Marion JROTC Cadet Haden “Monty” Montgomery has qualified to compete at the Junior Olympics for the second year in a row. Montgomery qualified to shoot in both the International Air and the Small-bore (.22 caliber) disciplines.
“I wasn’t sure that I would make it this year as I did not shoot particularly well during the qualification matches,” said the excited Montgomery, a senior at Marion High School. “I really wanted to go this year and am super excited to be able to shoot in both disciplines.”
Montgomery becomes the second Marion marksman to qualify for the Junior Olympics, joining his teammate Alysa Yancey who was an instant qualifier during qualification matches in February.
“Monty is an excellent marksman,” said retired Lt. Col. David Farlow, Marion’s rifle team coach. “He has worked very hard this year to improve his skills. He is a walking example of what dedication, diligence and hard work can accomplish.”
The Junior Olympics is sponsored by USA Shooting and held at the Olympic Training Facility in Colorado Springs. Only the very top marksmen from across the country qualify for attendance.
Farlow credits the success of the rifle team in part to the generous support his program has received over the past few years that enabled the purchase of top-quality equipment and travel expenses for team members to attend high-pressure national-level matches.
“Donations from the Brandon Barrett Foundation, Marion High School Alumni Association, the American Legion and many individuals helped us to purchase the SIUS Electronic Target System a couple of years ago,” Farlow said. “That alone has led to significant improvement in our shooting.”
Farlow went on to explain that other donations have enabled the cadets to compete at the highest levels and help hone the marksmen’s skills in the high-pressure matches.
“The travel costs for these two cadets to go to Colorado Springs for 10 days is high,” he said. “We welcome any donations to help off-set their cost for attendance.”
Donations can be mailed to JROTC at Marion High School, or made online.