May 29—It's exciting enough to receive an appointment to the U.S. Naval Academy, but when you're expected to graduate a century after your great-grandfather, there's an added sentiment.
That's the story for North Cobb Christian School graduate Alex Mamula, who, when he completes his education in Annapolis, Maryland, as part of the class of 2025, will do so 100 years after his great-grandfather, Capt. George W. Bains, a member of the Class of 1925.
According to the Mamula family, Capt. Bains served on a ship in World War II and later as an attorney for the Navy. Bains was the commanding officer of the USS Okaloosa and was later a legal officer in the US Navy JAG office for four years, presenting cases before the Supreme Court.
And now that Mamula's received his own appointment to the Naval Academy, he said he's ready to carry on the family legacy.
"I am honored and excited to carry on my family legacy and graduate from the Naval Academy exactly one century after my great-grandfather, Capt. George Washington Bains," Mamula said. "He has been a great inspiration to me, is an admired figure by many, and I am honored to carry on this family legacy."
The recent graduate, nominated for his appointment by U.S. Rep. Barry Loudermilk, R-Cassville, was also accepted to the U.S. Coast Guard Academy.
Mamula, a Marietta native, said he's wanted to attend the Naval Academy and serve his country since he was young. His main focus in high school was to prepare himself for that service.
"When I was in elementary school, I learned about my great grandfather ... and I became interested in attending the Naval Academy and serving my country," he said.
And the student's family says he worked hard to become a strong leader, well-rounded athlete and exceptional student to reach his goal.
At the Naval Academy, Mamula plans to major in naval architecture and marine engineering. He said he hopes the experience will help him strengthen his leadership and academic abilities, while continuing to honor God.
Mamula graduated May 22 with a 4.37 GPA. During his time in school, he served as captain of the varsity football team — a role in which he received the Christian Character Eagle Award from his coaches — was president of his school's student body and Beta Club and was a member of the National Honor Society and the National Spanish Honor Society.
He also completed an 80-hour internship and participated in the school's STEM academy, a rigorous academic path that included honors Math and Advanced Placement courses. He also received an outstanding student recognition through his STEM courses.
Outside of school, Mamula also completed community service and pursued hobbies like scuba diving, wakeboarding and snow boarding.
As he leaves high school behind, Mamula said he wants to be remembered as someone who strived to achieve high goals and inspire others.
Follow Thomas Hartwell on Twitter at twitter.com/MDJThomas.