NEW ORLEANS (WGNO) – Headed down the hall at their high school, they took their first steps

WGNO Good Morning New Orleans features reporter Bill Wood says it’s the first steps of a trip that would take them 5,000 miles from home.

They left their school, the Academy of the Sacred Heart in New Orleans.

From Louisiana to London, they traveled.

Their mission was to participate in a parade.

A fifty-year-old, three-hour parade that is the biggest of its kind on Earth.

Academy of the Sacred Heart sophomore, 15-year-old Kai Jones says, “it could have been a little bit bigger!”

Kai loves a big crowd moment.

Kai and senior Sophia Schuler are cheerleaders.

They are two of the one thousand All-American cheerleaders who auditioned back in the summer to march through London, the capital of the UK.

They were part of the London New Year’s Day Parade.

Sophia Schuler says they marched right past Buckingham Palace.

The Royal Family was not there at the moment, but if they had been Sophia would have had a cheer ready for King Charles.

As for Kai, she had a wink waiting for the Royal Family.

Back in the USA, Kai Jones has plans to become a doctor, a cardiologist.

Sophi Schuler will study business at Ole Miss.

One day, they’ll both look back on the time they were teenagers turning time to a new year in London.