Coon Rapids man nominated by Franken for admission to two military academies

U.S. Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.) has nominated Juan Suarez of Coon Rapids for admission to the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy and the U.S. Air Force Academy.

If chosen for an appointment by either academy, Suarez, the son of Claudia Pelton of Coon Rapids, would be part of the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy or U.S. Air Force Academy class of 2017 and would enter this fall.

“I am very pleased to nominate Juan Suarez to the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy and to the U.S. Air Force Academy,” Franken said.

“Each year, I nominate several talented young Minnesotans to our nation’s military academies because of their strong character, academic and athletic achievements, and demonstrated leadership ability.

“I have no doubt that Juan has the ability to excel at U.S. Merchant Marine Academy or U.S. Air Force Academy and become a successful future leader in our nation’s military.”

Suarez, a senior at Coon Rapids High School, has captained the football team and participated in lacrosse.

He is the president of the Coon Rapids High School DECA Chapter, a member of the National Honor Society and is a Civil Air Patrol Honor Guard member.

In addition, he has volunteered at the muscular dystrophy and ovarian cancer foundations, as well as with projects aiding wounded soldiers and for Independence Day celebrations.

The individual service academies make the final admission decisions and begin notifying nominees of their status in February.

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