Aaron Hall, 16, a junior at Minarets High School, is one of 95 semifinalists (seven from California) for the 2018 Military Child of the Year.
The Military Child of the Year Award, in its 10th year, reflects the positive impact that these special young people have made on their military families, their schools and their communities. The final seven award recipients will travel to Washington, D.C., to be recognized at an April 19 gala event, during which senior leaders of each branch of service will present the awards.
The final seven will each receive $10,000 scholarship and a laptop computer.
“It’s truly an honor being a semifinalist for this prestigious scholarship,” Hall said. “I really appreciate all the help and support I’ve had through my friends, family, teachers and community as a whole throughout the past few years. It is their support and care that has allowed me to continue my journey and make the most of it. I hope all falls in my favor as the months pass by because as Yogi Berra once said - “it ain’t over til it’s over.”
Hall, the son of Colonel David and Christina Hall of Yosemite Lakes Park. Colonel Hall is currently in Sacramento assuming duties as the Director of Operation of the California Army National Guard. He was the keynote speaker at Sierra Tel’s 13th Annual Patriot Day last year, honoring those who lost their lives in the Sept., 11, 2001, terrorist attack on New York and other locations in the country, and to pay tribute to all first responders.
Aaron is a leader and member of numerous organizations at Minarets High School having served as: vice president/treasurer of the associated student and president/treasurer of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, National Honor Society, Key Club, the California Scholarship Federation and Future Farmers of America chapter parliamentarian.
Academically, he is No. 1 in his class, and has taken several college courses online in order to further his academic abilities.
Aaron was selected as the Underclass Mr. Minarets Mustang, awarded to the individual who best exemplifies the values of Minarets and demonstrates academic achievement and school spirit. He was nominated by his teachers and was selected by the student body.
Aaron has also been a varsity starter on the Mustang baseball team since his freshman year, having been selected to the West Sequoia All League team twice. He was also selected as the team MVP and garnered All League honors on the Cross Country team.
He plays on the Central Valley Marlins Baseball Team, Fresno USA Baseball Team, Schutt Speed Elite Baseball Team, and Florida Marlins Scout Baseball Team. Additionally, he was a two way starter on the Mustang football team, earning All League honors as the leading tackler on the team as a Sophomore.
He has raised funds that have allowed him to travel to Korea and Japan so he could play in a World Baseball Tournament. Between his freshman and sophomore year, Aaron raised $7,400 in support of a Veteran’s Appreciation Baseball game at Minarets, with $4,500 donated to Doc’s Dogs for Vets. The organization, founded by a Gold Star family whose National Guard son died in Afghanistan, raises funds to fight PTS through service dogs.
Aaron hopes to play baseball In college, a goal that has kept him focused on positive outlets, despite the stress of his father’s overseas deployment and recent absence and his brother’s departure to college.
Using his public speaking skills he has found success in contests such as being a part of the 5th High Team State Novice Parli-Pro; High Individual Regional Parli-Pro; Impromptu Regional Contestant; Creed Regional Contestant and Lions Club speech contest finalist.
Six Military Child of the Year Award recipients will represent each branch of the armed forces — the Army, Marine Corps, Navy, Air Force, Coast Guard, and National Guard — for their academics, volunteerism, leadership, extracurricular activities and other criteria while facing the challenges of military family life. The seventh award is the Military Child of the Year Award for Innovation.