HARLINGEN — They come from as far as Nigeria, Korea, Vietnam and Houston.
And Kristen Luckey loves them all.
“We’ve had a lot of really great graduates come through here. A lot of the kids here are really great young men,” said Luckey, director of marketing and publicity for Marine Military Academy.
“I handle all of the marketing,” said Luckey, who’s son is a freshman at MMA.
“We advertise all over the country, considering our students are from all over the country, all over the world really,” said Luckey. “I also do all the websites, all the stuff with social media. We have over 800,000 followers between all of our social media pages.”
She’s also the cheerleading coach, although at MMA the cadets aren’t cheerleaders — obviously.
No, these young leathernecks are “yell hounds.”
“I love going to the football games and the basketball games, and the sports part of it,” she said. “It’s just fun. I love watching the kids play.”
She’s been at MMA just a little over two years, but the 1998 graduate of Harlingen High School South is deeply entrenched in the community.
“I love working here,” she said. “There’s so much history, it’s such a key part of Harlingen, the monument. The academy started in 1965. My dad was a graduate of MMA, my mother was a cheerleader.”
She was referring to the Iwo Jima monument, which holds a commanding presence over the academy grounds.
So fond is she of the school’s cadets, she works to keep them involved in various activities.
“I keep them involved in the community,” she said. “So when you see cadets out at events and things like that, I’m the organizer.”
She looks forward to the MMA birthday ball this Saturday, which will draw more than 800 attendees from all over the world.