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Captain Ernst Shares Why He Gives

Taylor Huneycutt is a College Program midshipman in the prestigious Naval ROTC program at The Ohio State University. As a College Program participant, his tuition is not paid by NROTC. Since he is responsible for the cost of his education and expenses, the generous support of Captain and Mrs. Larry Ernst has made all the difference in enabling Taylor to focus on his engineering degree while being an active member of NROTC. Captain Ernst shared with us his personal motivation for aiding students like Taylor.

Making college a reality was not easy for young Larry. His father passed away when he was only 9 years old, leaving his mother to raise him and his two sisters on her own. Larry worked in a grocery store to help support his family from the time of his father's death until he graduated high school with honors.

Larry worked hard to sustain himself while at The Ohio State University. Though he had an NROTC scholarship, it didn't cover room or board, so Larry worked three jobs while in college. He also took advantage of the Stadium Scholarship Housing for two years, worked as an resident advisor his senior year, and took out loans for fifth year which NROTC didn't cover.

With his many years of hard work, Larry went on to become Captain Larry L. Ernst, Commanding Officer of the USS Midway and "thoroughly enjoyed my 27 years active duty in the Navy."

He's also come to support students to spare them a little of the burden of his college years. With Captain Ernst's generosity, Taylor has had time to hold the Company Athletics Officer billet, in overseeing the company's physical training program as well as the remedial fitness program. He also served as the commander of the flag detail for several of this season's home football games, which was a very exciting and enriching experience. Taylor is also pursuing one of the most challenging majors on campus, mechanical engineering.

To Taylor, Captain Ernst said "Do not give up on your dream of a college education no matter how hard it is to achieve. I can assure you it is worth the effort and will reward you many times over for the sacrifice you have to make now."

Want to share your story with us? Please contact Leslie Kreinberg at 614-247-6600 or by email at Kreinberg.3@osu.edu