Mays leaves mark in four years

Four years ago, Central Michigan University's Reserve Officers' Training Corps ranked in the bottom half of the nation.

With its graduating cadets lagging behind the rest, the program needed strong leadership, discipline and confidence.

It needed Maj. Gregg Mays.

Mays, who served four years at CMU as chair of Central Michigan Univeristy's military science department, retired May 5 and moved back home to Florida.

The ROTC program he leaves behind is now one of the country's strongest, with last year's cadets graduating in the nation's top 15 percent.

"He was great to work for, every year he worked here the ranking of the program kept getting better and better," said Mary Brewer, ROTC human resources administrator.

Central ranked 183 out of the 271 ROTC programs in the United States in 2004.

Now it sits in 41st place for overall performance including academics, training, military skills and physical fitness.

Despite the program's vast improvements, Mays deflects the credit elsewhere.

"(Others) came to me and I approved their ideas- I just stayed out of their way," he said. "I'm looking forward to retiring, but I'll miss everyone. We really accomplished a lot."

Graduate cadet Lt. Michael Allen worked closely with Mays and said he remembers Mays for bringing new programs to the ROTC.

"Mays started the '300 physical fitness club' and that is something that has gotten national attention," he said. "Mays was an excellent instructor, he was very professional in developing us as people."

Lt. Col. Aaron Kalloch, who takes over as chair, said the adjustment is smooth because of Mays' contributions.

"Mays left a great foundation, I just need to keep the train rolling," he said.