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Bartlett native sworn into AFROTC

University of Alabama undergraduate student Gabriel Rye, at left, is congratulated by Lt. Col. Mark Valdez, UA AFROTC commander, after Rye was sworn into UA AFROTC during a ceremony at halftime of UA’s home soccer match against LSU on Sept. 21. Photo by Bryan Hester.

University of Alabama undergraduate student Gabriel Rye, at left, is congratulated by Lt. Col. Mark Valdez, UA AFROTC commander, after Rye was sworn into UA AFROTC during a ceremony at halftime of UA’s home soccer match against LSU on Sept. 21.
Photo by Bryan Hester.

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. — Gabriel Rye is now contracted with the University of Alabama’s Air Force ROTC detachment.

Rye, a graduate of Saint Agnes Academy and a Bartlett native, was one of 20 UA undergraduates sworn into UA’s Air Force ROTC detachment on Sept. 21 at “Bama Salute,” a UA Athletics-sponsored event that honors active duty military members and veterans at various UA sporting events throughout the year.

The UA cadets were sworn in during halftime of a UA soccer game in front of nearly 700 people, an atypical celebrated venue and audience, as contracting ceremonies are typically low-key, with family and other cadets and ROTC cadre present.

After completing all Air Force ROTC and academic degree requirements, contracted cadets – cadets in the Professional Officer Course (POC) and scholarship cadets – accept a commission as second lieutenants in the Air Force, appointed by the President of the United States. Since 2004, 159 University of Alabama AFRTOC cadets have been commissioned into the Air Force.

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