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VMI Cadets March to Site of the Battle at New Market - NBC29 WVIR Charlottesville, VA News, Sports and Weather

VMI Cadets March to Site of the Battle at New Market

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Thursday marks 150 years since the Battle at New Market in Shenandoah County. To pay tribute, cadets from Virginia Military Institute marched 84 miles to the battlefield.

Civil War reenactors, history buffs, students, and a group of cadets made it out to New Market Thursday. Thursday marked day five of the 84-mile odyssey that the cadets embarked on by foot. Their mission: to carry on a tradition that goes back 150 years ago to the Civil War.

"Some of the other guys have had some really bad foot problems. Blisters and open wounds and that sort of thing,” said Kurt Schommer, VMI Cadet.

Schommer says it’s all a part of paying homage to those who came before.

"We want to support VMI, and it's a big deal being the 150th anniversary. We're very proud of our heritage,” said Schommer.

All this week, visitors, Civil War enthusiasts and others will gather at New Market to relive the past.

"I think the history is important. Not just Civil War history, but history in general. Knowing what our ancestors did, what they went through,” said Eric Arnesen, high school senior and reenactor.

Arnesen dressed up for the anniversary. He says later this fall he heads to VMI.

For VMI cadets, this pilgrimage signifies a rite of passage.

"I've just learned so much from this trip. And it's a good way to preserve history. I like it,” said Schommer.

For those who missed out on Thursday's historic activities, you can still catch others going on all through Sunday. For more information, click here.

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