WASHINGTON — Officials from the Horatio Alger Association announced they will double their high school scholarship, providing $20,000 for the nation’s top college-bound seniors.

Applicants for the scholarship must be U.S. citizens attending a U.S. college, but officials said students living on military facilities overseas are eligible.

The 106 scholarships are reserved for high school seniors with a financial need, a strong résumé of extracurricular activities, and maintain at least a 2.0 grade point average.

To apply, students must submit an application on the association’s Web site, a letter from an adult describing the adversity the students have overcome, and a copy of their parents’ tax returns.

Applications for the scholarship are due by Oct. 30.

In 2005, the group announced the first-ever national scholarship open exclusively to troops who have served in the Iraq or Afghanistan. More than 1,100 of the $5,000 were awarded last year.

The association will begin accepting applications for that scholarship Nov. 1.

For more information on the grants, visit

CH-53 Sea Stallion helo forced into hard landingA Marine Corps CH-53 Sea Stallion helicopter was forced into a “hard landing” late Thursday in Anbar province, officials said Friday. No injuries were reported in the incident.

The helicopter was forced down by “reduced visibility caused by dust,” according to a Marine Corps news release. Enemy fire was not a factor in the incident. The helicopter and crew are assigned to the 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing, I Marine Expeditionary Force.

Air Force’s Tops in Blue to perform in EuropeTops In Blue, the Air Force’s premier entertainment group, will perform at U.S. military installations across Europe in the coming weeks. The dates are:

Saturday: RAF Fairford, United Kingdom

Sunday: RAF Croughton, UK

Monday: Menwith Hill Station, UK

Tuesday: RAF Alconbury, UK

Sept. 16: Patch Barracks, Germany

Sept. 19: Buechel Air Base, Germany

Sept. 20: Spangdahlem Air Base, Germany

Sept. 21: NATO Air Base Geilenkirchen, Germany

Sept. 23: Kleine Brogel Air Base, Belgium

Sept. 25: SHAPE, Belgium

Sept. 30: Annual USO Service Salute, Wiesbaden, Germany

Oct. 2: George C. Marshall Center, Garmisch, Germany

Oct. 5: Ramstein Air Base, Germany

Oct. 10: Incirlik Air Base, Turkey

Oct. 11: Ankara, Turkey

Oct. 14-15: Aviano Air Base, Italy.

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