HARRIS COUNTY, Ga. (WRBL) — A 2022 Harris County High School (HCHS) graduate and JROTC cadet, Samuel (Sam) Winstead, is the first student in the high school’s history to earn the prestigious Georgia Military Veterans Hall of Fame (GMVHOF) military scholarship, according to a press release from the Harris County School District. GMVHOF and scholarship founder Col. Paul Longgrear (United States Army, retired) of Pine Mountain, Georgia presented the $4,000 scholarship to Samuel on Tuesday.

“Our purpose is to influence the patriotic attitudes for local and national leaders by rewarding students who choose to participate in JROTC and ROTC, thereby inspiring citizens to be more Constitutionally oriented,” Longgrear said.

To qualify for the scholarship, said GMVHOF director and chairman of the board Col. Rick White (United States Army, retired), Georgia high school seniors must:

  • Have competitive GPA and SAT scores
  • Have been enrolled in JROTC
  • Be accepted into the ROTC program of an accredited four-year college or university
  • Express plans to serve in the military upon graduation

This year, 11 of 15 scholarship recipients had an A average for their high school GPAs, says the press release. Applications for the scholarship were submitted from 13 cities and 14 school districts. Those who receive the scholarship will be attending Augusta State University, Fort Valley State University, Oglethorpe University, University of Georgia and University of North Georgia. So far, $92,000 worth of scholarships have been given out through the GMVHOF program.

Samuel was born in Fort Benning, Georgia to Lt. Col. Mark and Kristine Winstead and has lived his entire life in Harris County. Following in his father’s footsteps, he plans to join the military.

“Sam has been influenced over the years by a tradition of service – both civilian and military – within our family,” Mark said.

Samuel plans to attend the University of North Georgia in Dahlonega, Georgia where he will participate in the ROTC program.