Albany, N.Y., May 3—State Senator Tom O’Mara (R,C,I–Big Flats) and Assemblyman Phil Palmesano (R,C,I–Corning) today joined their legislative colleagues at the Capitol to host the 65th annual “West Point Day” and pay tribute to current West Point cadets from New York State, including Corning native Lili Ruland.
The Legislature’s annual celebration honors the United States Military Academy at West Point, located in Orange County in New York’s Hudson River Valley. West Point is the oldest, continuously operating Army post in the United States. It began operating in 1802 during the presidency of Thomas Jefferson.
In a joint statement, O’Mara and Palmesano said, “The Legislature’s ‘West Point Day’ provides a yearly opportunity to recall and pay tribute to the historic contributions that this prestigious military institution has made to the strength of our nation and peace throughout the world. We are proud that New York State is home to West Point. We are equally proud this year to have the opportunity to recognize Cadet Lili Ruland of Corning and appreciate this chance to express our gratitude for her deep commitment to serving the United States of America. Cadet Ruland and all of her fellow cadets are among America’s most outstanding young men and women who are destined to become our nation’s future leaders. Lili is an enormous source of pride to her family and friends, and our entire region.”
Ruland is the daughter of Kenneth and Jennifer Ruland of Corning. She is a 2014 graduate of Corning-Painted Post East High School.
As part of West Point Day, O’Mara and Palmesano also co-sponsored a Legislative Resolution in their respective legislative chambers honoring West Point, and Ruland and all of the current cadets from New York State. The resolution reads, in part, “The Academy and its graduates are an integral part of the proud history of this State and Nation. The leadership and sacrifices of the members of the Long Grey Line have helped this country withstand countless threats to our cherished democratic way of life. The alumni have excelled not only on the battlefield but in many fields of endeavor. The Academy continues to provide our country with able and dedicated future leaders…Our Nation has enjoyed the legacy of freedom and the United States Military Academy at West Point has played a vitally significant role in the maintenance of peace and freedom.”
An estimated 1,200 new cadets enter West Point each year. Currently, there are over 4,000 cadets enrolled at the academy from every state in the United States, as well as from several foreign countries. Upon their graduation, West Point cadets are deployed throughout the world and serve on active military duty for at least five years.