Missouri Military Academy


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From BG Garaci, my NMMI brother and President of Missouri Military Academy. I cannot help but share his message.

Dear MMA alumni and friends,

On January 21, I addressed the corps at Vespers, our weekly non-denominational service focused on self-reflection, personal and spiritual growth held in Memorial Chapel. During my address, I reflected on my recent recovery from the serious injury and surgery to both my legs and how I learned to deal with adversity through my own experience as a cadet at a military school. 

I shared with cadets that I had to draw upon physical, mental and spiritual strength to recover my mobility and return to campus. As I did so, it renewed my belief in and commitment to what we teach cadets at Missouri Military Academy.

While we strive for excellence and tangible results in academics and athletics, it is the intangible skills and traits — most importantly, their resilience and never-quit attitude — we develop in cadets that truly make a difference in their success.

In my address at Vespers, I shared with the cadets something one of my high school coaches told me that I have never forgotten:

“If you never quit, you are a competitor, and in the end, you will be a winner. If you quit, you are a loser, and once you quit, quitting becomes a habit.”

Here are other insights I shared with cadets, advice I believe encapsulates some of the important lessons we teach here at the Academy:

Each cadet has a special talent and something to contribute. Seek excellence with your God-given talents.

Resilience is a personality trait you can each develop. Resilient people exhibit maturity, display a strong sense of personal responsibility, maintain optimism, persevere when times are tough and are cooperative. People who lack resilience complain, blame others, display a negative attitude and lack self-worth and self-confidence.

Bad things happen to everyone throughout their lives. How you respond to adversity is critical and defines your character. MMA will help you develop resilience, a “never quit” attitude and the ability to overcome adversity, and in many instances, the ability to turn adversity into opportunity.

My successful recovery, ahead of the anticipated schedule, required a lot of support from many individuals – my wife Kathy and family, doctors, nurses, specialists, and physical therapists. My gratitude for their support is immense, and it renewed my appreciation for the selflessness and generosity of others, people who give while they (like everyone) have their own problems and challenges. Our cadets have this kind of support at MMA — an incredible brotherhood, supported by staff, faculty, and coaches focused on their success.

It is with gratitude that I have the opportunity to share and teach cadets these lessons. With their parents’ partnership and support, we are teaching them to take command of their lives.

I hope to see you on campus at the Maroon & Gold Gala on Saturday, April 20 in further support of our shared mission. Please find details below on how you can help make the event a success — and make a difference for our cadets.

Richard V. Geraci
Brigadier General, USA (Ret)

Behind every great institution stands supporters who play a vital role in its success, and we are grateful for individuals like you who embrace this responsibility. Thank you.

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