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Mt. Juliet Middle School football field renamed for Barry Wilmore

Mt. Juliet High School alumnus and NASA astronaut Capt. Barry Wilmore receives a plaque from Mt. Juliet Middle School Principal Candis Angle at the Aug. 15 MJMS football game against Gladeville Middle. The field was renamed in honor of Wilmore who played football on the field when it was still Mt. Juliet High School. | Photo by Sarah Tate

The Mt. Juliet Middle School football field was renamed in honor of Mt. Juliet High School alumnus and NASA astronaut Captain Barry Wilmore.

While attending Mt. Juliet High School, at the location of the current MJMS, Wilmore played football for the Bears on the field, adding to the significance of the dedication. Family, former coaches and teammates of Wilmore were in attendance for the ceremony as well.

MJMS Principal Candis Angle presented Wilmore with a plaque, which matches the one at the field designating it as Barry Wilmore Field. The dedication was held during halftime of the MJMS football game against Gladeville Middle.

As a special entrance, Wilmore flew in on a Lifeflight helicopter and ran the game ball onto the field, which was then given to Coach Bohanon from Gladeville Middle School to commemorate their first game.

Wilmore is a veteran of two spaceflights and has accumulated 178 days in space. In 2014, he served as a Flight Engineer for Expedition 41 until November when he assumed command of the station upon arrival of the Expedition 42 crew. He returned to Earth in March 2015. In 2009, he served as a pilot aboard Space Shuttle Atlantis for STS-129.

Wilmore was also a naval officer and pilot, completing four deployments from the USS Forrestal, USS John F. Kennedy, USS Enterprise and USS Dwight D. Eisenhower. He flew support missions during Operations Desert Shield, Desert Storm and Southern Watch and flew 21 combat missions during Operation Desert Storm.

Last year, Wilmore received the National Collegiate Athletic Association’s Theodore Roosevelt Award, the group’s highest honor given to an individual. Former winners include: Dwight D. Eisenhower (1967), Gerald Ford (1975), Sally Ride (2005) and John Glenn (2008).

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