Senior summer goes AWOL


Devin Poplin

Hannah Cherry and Kyler Lardieri will have abbreviated summer vacations but they feel strongly about their commitment to serve the U.S. armed forces.

Devin Poplin, Staff Writer

As the school year comes to a close, most seniors are planning one last big summer blowout. Senior week with friends, vacations with family and trips to Raystown are all common, but there are two seniors this year that won’t get to experience much of their last summer.

Senior Hannah Cherry has enlisted in the Army and leaves for basic training on June 23. That is just over two weeks after graduation. Hannah said she will be away until at least the end of November, she may or may not be able to come home then.

Another senior, Kyler Lardieri has also enlisted, but he enlisted in the Marines.  He leaves on June 15 and will be gone for 13 weeks.

“I chose this because I always knew I wanted to join the military. I think this could help me experience life in a way.”

— Hannah Cherry

When asked if they are ready to go, Hannah said yes, she is. “I’m a little nervous to get there and settle in the first week, but that’s it.”

Kyler said, “I’m as ready as I’ll ever be.”

Hannah said that before she leaves she is planning to work out a lot and also spend as much time as she can with friends and family.

“My family and I have a lot of day trips planned,” she said.

“Before I leave I would like to go visit my sister in Michigan,” said Kyler. “I would also like to go on a weekend trip hiking and kayaking.”

Both seniors said they will miss their friends back home.

“I am going to miss the memories I could have made with my friends during my last summer. I am also going to miss seeing my little brother and sister every day and watching them grow up,” said Hannah.

I’m as ready as I’ll ever be.”

— Kyler Lardieri

Both Kyler and Hannah’s families seem to be supportive of their choices. Kyler said that his family is excited about his decision and are happy he is pursuing it. Hannah said that her mom and gram are both very encouraging.

“I chose the Marines because it is more of a challenge than the other branches,” said Kyler. “I plan on making it a career. If I didn’t my career choice would be a police officer or working for the CIA or the government.”

“I chose this because I always knew I wanted to join the military and I don’t know what I would take as a major in college right now,” said Hannah. “I think this could help me experience life in a way.

“If I enjoy the military I will make it a career, but I definitely plan on getting schooling out of it. If I had to choose something now I would probably pick to take something in broadcasting.”

Kyler said that he hopes to help people in need and make a good career out of the Marines.

Hannah said, “I want to make people proud. I want to look back and think that it wasn’t a waste of time. I think the military will help me grow up and be responsible and it will help me learn more about myself in a positive way.”