Hernando County brothers receive Congressional Award

By Kim Leoffler, Reporter
Last Updated: Sunday, June 18, 2017, 10:33 PM EDT

Two brothers from Hernando County have been selected to receive the Congressional Award Gold Medal. They are two of ten recipients in the state and about 370 throughout the country.

  • Two brothers receive Congressional Award
  • Ronald and Joshua Florkowski are from Hernando County
  • They are two of 10 recipients in the state  

It's been a long time coming. The Florkowski brothers have been working for about four years toward earning this award.

"They told me and I was ecstatic about it," Ronald Florkowski said.

"It was an honor it was a great honor," Joshua Florkowski added.

They got started when Ronald, the older brother, wanted to attend the air force academy.

"We started looking for ways that he could kind of stand out amongst the academy applicants. And while we were doing that we came across this congressional youth award," Darlene Florkowski, the boys’ mother, said.

For the program, the brothers spent time volunteering with local hospice centers and working with the tops program aimed at helping young soccer players with disabilities. Over the past few years, they have totaled over 400 hours giving back to their community.

"It could get daunting but they stuck through it," Darlene said.

In order to get the award the brothers had to meet certain criteria in four different categories: volunteering, personal development, physical fitness, and expedition and exploration. And their mom said by setting and meeting goals in each of these categories the program has helped her sons grow tremendously.

"It's given them a hearts for others. You know kids teenagers they're normally more for themselves and what they want. It's shown a lot of integrity," Darlene explained.

And Ronald and Joshua said they were thankful to work toward this goal together.

"It's encouraging it's very encouraging. I greatly appreciated it and we supported each other along the way," Joshua said.

"When we go out to hospice it's been hard to see people have to pass you know one day you see them and the next weekend you don't but a lot of it he's been there with me," Ronald added.

They will officially receive their gold medals on Wednesday.

The brothers are also in the Air Force Reserves.  They'll attend a military youth banquet while they're in D.C.