JROTC helped grad overcome struggles, Ida devastation

Haven Troxler

When Haven Troxler walked across the stage to receive her diploma, she had her JROTC Flight Academy classmates to thank for helping her achieve her goal.

Troxler has struggled with her mental health throughout her high school career, to the point that it took a toll on her attendance, grades and life. She got to the point during her freshman year that she missed school for weeks at a time because she did not have the motivation or drive to attend.

“Through an act of kindness of the JROTC flight I had that year I did in fact return,” Troxler said. “The flight wrote me a get well soon card after a long period of absences which inevitably gave me the hope and motivation I needed to come back to school.”

Like most people in the area, Troxler was also impacted by Hurricane Ida as her home was damaged beyond repair.

“I have had to bounce around from place to place for those years all the way up until now,” she said. “Going through the last few years bouncing between family members has been a struggle to come back from. Though presented as a challenge in my life this has shown me what my family is  capable of going through. As well as what I myself can get through and not give up from when times are tough.”

Troxler first got involved in the JROTC program during her freshman year in high school. It was something she was drawn to since her grandfather is a Marine.

“In the beginning, I knew that this was going to be a program that would change my life for the better if I stuck to it,” she said. “During the end of my sophomore year I had a decision to make. I had to decide if I was going to continue my journey with the unit or I was going to leave and take other courses. I ultimately chose to continue with the unit. By this time the unit had become a second family to me.

“Though I originally did not join for myself, I chose to continue on doing things that I love with amazing people around me while building relationships that will last a lifetime.”

Additionally, Troxler spent a lot of her time at the Satellite Center as a digital media team member. She helped create the marketing package for this year’s Haunted History Hike and was able to go on a field trip to The Mortuary haunted house in order to get a behind the scenes look at what it takes to make such a production happen.

“I was even given the opportunity to present ideas to the superintendent of St. Charles Public Schools himself, Dr. Ken Oertling, for a project he requested,” Troxler said. “This project turned his frequently used sayings into posters to be printed and placed throughout the central office building as well as his office for motivation for him and his staff.”

Troxler said the Satellite Center helped prepare her for life after graduation.

“While learning more about time management, I had to develop more multi-tasking abilities in order to complete the projects and assignments given like you normally would see in the working world,” she said. “This experience also gives me a chance to have hands-on learning opportunities of what it is like to give and lead a formal presentation and make necessary preparations.”

Troxler also took part in the school’s concert and marching band, as well as the choir. She loves English and said her favorite part about high school was meeting friends and building lasting relationships.

“As a high school student in St. Charles Parish you are given so many more opportunities that can give you better fundamental soft skills needed to function in the world outside of high school,” she said. “I feel like my experiences in Hahnville High School definitely had an impact on the person I have become today.”

Troxler will attend Fletcher Technical Community College this fall to achieve her associates degree in general studies. She then plans to transfer to Nicholls State University and complete her degree in human resources.