DALLAS — Back from the week-long Pennsylvania State Police Youth Week program held in York, Riley Oremus described what the camp was like to veterans at the Daddow-Issacs Dallas American Legion Post 672, the group that sponsored her trip.
“We were given two shirts, two shorts, one ball cap, and a water bottle, … and we woke every morning at 4:30 ready for physical training. I was very ready for breakfast,” said the Dallas High School senior at the Legion post’s Tuesday night meeting.
The 180 young men and women aged 15-17 roomed in freshmen dorms at York College for the week and worked on platoon drills, physical training and the finer elements of military life like being on time, being prepared, flag ceremonies and dressing in regulation uniform.
The brochure for the program, sponsored by the state police, the Pennsylvania American Legion and the PA National Guard, explicitly lists the experience as “not a recreational camp.” It’s intended for students who aim for careers in law enforcement or plan to join the military.
“It was fantastic,” said Oremus. “We got our rifle qualification and water survival certification.”
Oremus said she gets her drive and determination from her parents, Maureen and Chris Oremus, who live in Franklin Township. She’s also motivated by her older sister, Lindsey, and her uncle, Michael Koval, a 21-year retired Marine helicopter pilot who served during Desert Storm in Afghanistan.
Oremus said she applied for early admission to kindergarten at age 4 because she couldn’t stand being left at home while her older sister went to school. At 16, she is now applying to the Naval Academy.
She works out every Wednesday at the Marine Corp recruitment center in Wilkes-Barre, runs with the school track team, swims and is involved with the Dallas High School Military Interest Club.
Her enthusiasm and abilities have not gone unnoticed. Oremus earned the William Evans Leadership Award at the conclusion of the camp, which included a $500 scholarship and a plaque. She also was invited to return next year as a junior camp counselor.
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