Banbury Army Cadet recognised for her service
Shannon Gilkes, who lives in Brackley, was appointed to serve as the Lord Lieutenant's Army Cadet for Oxfordshire at the South East Reserve Forces and Cadets Association's award's ceremony.
The prestigious award will see Shannon represent nearly 600 army cadets across the county in assisting the new Lord Lieutenant in her royal duties. She was one of four Lord-Lieutenant's Cadets appointed at the ceremony, one for each branch of the armed services.
Shannon serves as a cadet lance corporal with the Banbury Jordan detachment Oxfordshire (The Rifles) Battalion Army Cadet Force, where she has served for over five years.
Rita Cronin, Shannon's mother, said: "Shannon also had the honour of being chosen to be a guest speaker at the awards ceremony, and was highly commended by many afterwards for her eloquently delivered and constructed speech."
Shannon was nominated for the role due to her dedication to the cadet force, many efforts in volunteering and keeping up moral during the last two years.
Shannon, who is a former Chenderit School student and Hill View Primary pupil, now attends year 13 at Magdalen College School.
Rita Cronin, Shannon's mother, said: "Shannon has a heart of gold, and was out in all types of weather delivering groceries by foot and on her bike to the elderly for many months during our lockdowns.
"As well as raising funds for the poppy appeal through an online raffle when poppies could not be sold on the streets she went to every virtual parade night and worried about mental and physical health. Shannon kept up moral and demonstrated excellent leadership skills for other cadets by constantly thinking of different ways cadets and their families could get active or posting ideas of things they could do to pass the time and encouraging others to do the same."