Elon ROTC cadet leads team in Mountain Man March

Elon junior Austin Hughes completed the 26.2-mile Mountain Man March on April 23.

<span style=”font-size: 14px; line-height: 22px;”>Austin Hughes, Elon ROTC cadet and team leader, &nbsp;pictured in the front left alongside his &nbsp;N.C. A&amp;T team members and the gold star family.</span>
Austin Hughes, an Elon junior and Army ROTC student, lead a team of six North Carolina A&T Army ROTC cadets on the 26.2-mile Mountain Man March April 23.

The team competed in the most grueling category, which required them to hike through the Smokey Mountains wearing service uniforms and each carrying a 35-pound rucksack. To exemplify the military’s creed of “no man left behind,” all team members were required to cross the finish line together. The team finished with a time of 7:49:45.

The event is one of the largest in the U.S. organized to honor the sacrifice of fallen heroes who died while serving our country. In addition to more than 20 ROTC units, active duty, reserve units and civilian teams all participated.  In honor of the fallen service members, each team was paired with the family of a fallen service member, also known as a gold star family.