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ALUMNI REVIEW 2010-Issue 4




This issue includes class notes covering the time period of May 16 to Aug. 15, 2010. Other than class notes, most stories and news in this issue were received in the May through August ’10 time frame.

FEATURES 10 Nay ’44, a POW in WWII 12

Shuba ’61 Rides for Warriors


Reading Room Honors ’69


Setting Sail: Hall & Potts ’71


Wynn ’04 Focuses on Climate

The VMI Alumni Review (USPS 954-740) is published four times yearly in fall, winter, spring and summer by The VMI Alumni Association, Inc., P.O. Box 932, Lexington, VA 24450. It is sent to alumni and friends of the Institute without subscription.

Class of 2014 is Largest Ever




Association/Chapter News

Periodicals postage paid at Lynchburg, VA.


Class Notes

PURPOSE OF THE VMI ALUMNI ASSOCIATION To organize the alumni, the better to keep alive the memories of Institute life and—by their united efforts—to aid in the promotion of the welfare of the Institute, and the successful prosecution of its educational purposes.

144 Births, Marriages & Degrees 148 Taps 156 Alumni News

DEPARTMENTS President’s Letter

154 Association Directory 167 The Institute 175 VMI Athletics 177 The Foundation 186 The Keydet Club

2010-Issue 4

ATTENTION POSTMASTER: Send changes of address to: VMI Alumni Review, P.O. Box 932, Lexington, VA 24450


143 Most Senior Alumni


Editor: Hope Hennessey Assistant Editor: Traci Mierzwa Editorial Assistant: Brenda Stoner

PRINTER Progress Printing Co., Inc. Lynchburg, Virginia

Change and Energy Policy 18

PUBLISHER The President of The VMI Alumni Association, Inc.

PUBLISHING OFFICE The VMI Alumni Association, Inc., Alumni Review Office VMI Moody Hall, P.O. Box 932, Lexington, VA 24450; 540/464-7224

and Dodge ’83 17

Volume 86, No. 3


VMI ALUMNI AGENCIES TELEPHONE NUMBERS The VMI Alumni Association: The VMI Foundation: The VMI Keydet Club:

540/464-7221 540/464-7287 540/464-7328

WEB SITE ADDRESSES Alumni Agencies: VMI: ON OUR COVER Front Cover: On a windy parade day, Superintendent Gen. J.H. Binford Peay III ’62 saluted the Color Guard, while a cadet held tight to the flag. Photo: Steele Burrow. Inside Front Cover: Barracks before matriculating cadets arrived. Inside Back Cover: Cadre with new cadets. Photos: Kevin Remington.


A MESSAGE FROM THE PRESIDENT Dear Fellow Alumni, The leaves are falling in Lexington, a sign of another season and the remembrance of our founding celebrated on Nov. 11. I hope by now you have had an opportunity to visit our school and to see the completion of the Barracks renovations, as well as progress on the North Post. Blanks ’67 With the fall, came reunions, and I am pleased to report that many alumni enjoyed a chance to see Brother Rats at parade and during evening activities and Old Yells surrounding the sentinel box. The class of ’85 had the largest 25th Reunion attendance of any class in our history, and they made a very generous donation to the Foundation. THANK YOU TO THE CLASS OF ’85. The printed edition of the 2010 Register of Former Cadets is scheduled for availability in the near future. As part of that project, the Association staff undertook an extensive data verification effort. I am pleased to report that through this effort and your cooperation, we have updated more than 14,000 alumni records. This is a terrific response rate and certainly improves the accuracy of our records. A special thanks to alumni who took the time to complete that update. Remember that all of the updated address and work information is available at no cost to alumni after logging in to our Web site in a password-protected, online alumni directory. In response to my request to get involved with VMI, Charlie Ramsburg ’66 (Greensboro, North Carolina), Mike Anderson ’88 (Charlotte, North Carolina) and Steve Skakandy ’01 (Camp Lejeune, North Carolina) attended our Alumni Association Board meeting on Sept. 4th and actively participated in committee meetings – a great showing from the chapter president ranks. Any alumnus is invited to attend our meetings, and we look forward to seeing more of you, as your schedules permit. In this issue of the Review, you have the opportunity to read about several alumni, their lives and the causes to which some are contributing their time and talents. For example, see the article about three alumni whose lives have been greatly affected by sailing: John Dodge ’83 and Brother Rats Thomas Hall ’71 and Rives Potts ’71. Dodge and his wife have established Project Sails to Save Haiti, a donation program to assist those impacted by the Jan. 12, 2010, earthquake. Hall spent 16 years carefully restoring his boat, Aquila – a labor of love – which he then donated to help at-risk teens, and Potts’ passion for the sport of sailing has earned him fame and many coveted awards worldwide. In addition, there is a heartwarming feature story about two generations of the Nay family: Bob Nay ’44, who served in World War II and was held as a POW, and his son, Bill Nay ’77, who urged Bob to share some of his story with us. Read about Lou Shuba ’61 who completed the 110-mile “Face of America” bicycle ride to honor primarily the wounded young men and women who have returned from Iraq and Afghanistan. Shuba, an amputee, received special recognition for his fundraising efforts. Also, check out the article about Todd Wynn ’04 whose life has taken a dramatically different turn than he had planned when he was a cadet. He is now vice president of the Cascade Policy Institute in Oregon, focusing on climate change and energy policy. As always, the Alumni Association stands to serve alumni, and I hope you will use the Web site (, this magazine and the full-time staff in Lexington to support you. Sincerely,

Randolph M. Blanks ’67 President, VMI Alumni Association



Sniper instructors who are training Special Forces, SEAL and Marine Special Operations Teams in south and west Afghanistan include John Tamborino ’03, far left, Christopher Watkins ’91, third from right, and Jonathan Watson ’91, second from right. Others pictured are not VMI alumni.


Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom An Update The following alumni names have been received since the publication of the 2010-Issue 3 Alumni Review. This update does not include alumni names received after Aug. 1, 2010. Also, once the name of an alumnus has been listed in the Review, it will not appear again, even if the alumnus is re-deployed at a later date. Not all of the alumni listed are currently serving in OEF/OIF, but they all have served at one time. Names and photographs are e-mailed to us almost every week.

Because we have to have a cut-off date for each issue, your name and picture may have arrived past that date and therefore are not published in this issue; they will be published in the next issue. Please send additions, corrections and photographs to the Alumni Review staff at: VMI Alumni Review, P.O. Box 932, Lexington, VA 24450 (e-mail: For a complete list of names that we have received, go to and click on the link titled “OEF/ OIF,” or go directly to

Class of 1980

Class of 1987

Kelly, William P. Lt. Col., ANG

Cade, Steven G. Col., USA

Class of 1985

Class of 1989

Rowlett, Wilfred G. (W.G.) II, Col., USAR

Black, James H. Cmdr., USN

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Class of 1990 Kucik III, Paul D. Lt. Col., USA

Class of 2004 Cage, J. Matthew Capt., USA Puvogel, John B., Civilian

Class of 2005 Barbaree, R. Donel III Capt., USMC Photo left: Lt. Jonathan Corrado ’05, right, and Lt. j.g. Jarod Wheeler ’05, left, on the aircraft carrier U.S.S. Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN 69) in the Arabian Gulf. Wheeler is an F-18 pilot with Squadron VFA 143, and Corrado is a nuclear engineering officer with the Reactor Department/Reactor Laboratories Division, which is onboard the Eisenhower.

Photo above: Dave Clarke ’83, left, lead electrical engineer in the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, wrote that he and co-worker Chris Campbell (ODU ’84), right, were part of a design team at Camp Brown in Kandahar, Afghanistan. Photos at right and above right: Clarke took these photos of two buildings in the Corps of Engineers Afghanistan DistrictSouth Headquarters compound at Kandahar Airfield. About the building names/signs, Clarke wrote, “I don’t know who the Keydet was that preceded me, and no one could tell me who named the buildings there, but it was obvious to me [that] he was from the ‘I’. Nichols Hall houses the district J-2 and J-3, and Scott Shipp Hall houses the J-4. As I tell people all the time, ‘We’re everywhere.’” Clarke has since returned to the United States.



Class of 2005 (cont.) Gorski, Brian R. Capt., USMC Guerra, Felix Capt., USMC Karnes, Andrew J. Lt., USA Murphy, Ryan A. Capt., USA Pobirsky, Lev Capt., USMC Wheeler, Jarod B. Lt. j.g.

Class of 2006 Deem, Kyle M. Capt., USAF Maxwell, Nolan J. Capt.

Class of 2008 Able, Kurt M. 1st Lt., USA DeLong, Brandon D. 1st Lt., USAF Zanelotti, Patrick J., USA

Photo above: John Puvogel ’04 volunteered for a civilian deployment to Afghanistan with the U.S. Army beginning in February 2010. Photo right: Air Force Col. Larry Avery ’80, director of the Office of Security Cooperation-Afghanistan, in Kabul, June 2010.

Photo left: Lt. Col. Paul Kucik ’90, USA, right, and Gen. David Petreaus, who is commander of both the International Security Assistance Force and U.S. Forces Afghanistan. Photo below: Kucik, right, and Robert Kolb ’89, USA, at an Iraqi school where they were conducting community outreach work.

Photo above: Col. W.G. Rowlett ’85, USA, left, with Mark Lowe ’81 at Joint Forces Special Operations Command Center in Iraq, August 2010.

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Photo above, left: Class of 1990 Brother Rats Lt. Col. Tom West, left, and Lt. Col. Mike Manning, both U.S. Marine Corps, connected while in Afghanistan. Photo above, right: West and Dom Ford ’93 in Afghanistan.

Photo left: In an AH-64D Longbow Apache were Captains Patrick Szvetitz ’03, right, and Matt Cage ’04 in Tallil, Iraq. Szvetitz is the commander of B Company, 1/1-130 Attack Recon Battalion, and Cage is the flight surgeon for the 412th Aviation Support Battalion.

Photo right: Air National Guard Lt. Col. Bill Kelly ’80 during his deployment to Afghanistan.

Photo left: Commemorating July 4th in Afghanistan were, from left, Craig Price ’93, Dom Ford ’93, Tom West ’90, Maj. Brad Rees ’94 (USA), Col. John Malik ’85, Col. Rob Gardner ’85 and Todd Eckloff ’90. All but Rees are U.S. Marines.



Above: Matt Payne ’08, USA, while on patrol in Iraq. Photo left: From left, Brian Sain ’07, Jonathon Roland ’08 and J.T. Tishman ’08 in Iraq. All are U.S. Army soldiers.

VMI Seeks Commissioning Information for Classes of 1990-2009 In order to more accurately reflect commissioning percentages at VMI, the Institute is seeking to uncover those alumni who have commissioned in any branch of service following their graduation through

an Officer Candidate Program or other commissioning avenue. VMI believes that there may be a sizeable number of alumni in this category. If you commissioned after graduation, by some

means other than direct commission through VMI ROTC, please contact Lt. Col. Gary Bissell ’89, assistant chief of staff, by e-mail at or by phone at 540/464-7104.

Black ’89 Aboard Al Basra Oil Terminal

Photo left: Cmdr. James H. Black ’89, USN, center, and a portion of his unit aboard the Al Basra Oil Terminal (ABOT) during a July 4th celebration. Black’s unit, Maritime Expeditionary Security Detachment 823, was deployed to Kuwait and Iraq in March 2009. The unit’s primary mission, Black explained, was to provide point defense and force protection of ABOT as part of Operation Iraqi Freedom. Photo above: An Iraqi patrol boat transporting the incoming commander, Task Group Iraqi Maritime, his chief of staff, Black and others to mainland Iraq for a meeting with the Iraqi Navy commodore.

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Benhoff ’86 Exhibits Photos of Afghanistan at Marine Corps Museum Editor’s Note: The following article featuring Lt. Col. David Benhoff ’86, USMC, was published in the July 20, 2010, edition of InsideNoVa, presented by News & Messenger. It is reprinted here with permission.

Photographing Afghanistan by Julia LeDoux [InsideNoVa] Smiles light up the faces of two young Afghani girls in one photo. In another, a group of U.S. Marines and soldiers are pictured while training and operating with their counterparts in the Afghan army. In a third, a youngster carries a sack full of grain as she helps her family harvest crops. In a fourth, a group of Afghani soldiers proudly displays the targets they shot following a weapons qualifying session. Those photographs – both in color and black and white – are among the 30 that were on display through the end of September [2010] at the National Museum of the Marine Corps in its new temporary exhibit titled, “Afghanistan, Its People, Its Army – and U.S. Marine Advisors.” Taken by Lt. Col. David A. Benhoff [’86], the photos depict Marines as they train and operate with members of the Afghan National Army. “My role is [to be] a fly on the wall,” he said of his time with the embedded teams. “I wanted to take photos of them doing their thing and not get in the way.” Benhoff, who lives in Culpeper and is assigned to the Marine Corps History Division at Quantico Marine Corps base, took the photos in 2009 while serving in Afghanistan with the embedded teams. Much of the training provided by the Marines to members of the Afghan army takes place in mountainous, rugged terrain or in remote villages that are not easily accessible. “In the areas that I was in when I was there, it was mostly just normal, everyday people trying to survive,” he added. The photographs will eventually be part of an upcoming photographic essay book, Afghanistan: Alone and Unafraid, to be published by Marine Corps University Press.


“I hope the photographs and text will help you understand the unique mission of the embedded training teams and give you a look at some of the terrain, culture and perhaps most importantly, the people of Afghanistan,” said Benhoff. “This is a battle for the very soul of Afghanistan.” Benhoff also deployed to Iraq in 2005 in a similar capacity for the Marine Corps History Division. His book, Among the People: U.S. Marines in Iraq, tells the story of the Marines’ work with the Iraqi people.

Photo above: Lt. Col. David Benhoff ’86, USMC, had an exhibition at the National Museum of the Marine Corps consisting of photographs he took while in Afghanistan for the Marine History Division. The exhibition was in place through September 2010. Photo by Jeff Mankie/ News & Messenger.

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VMI Locket is Now Available for Purchase

Unique, One-of-a-Kind Jewelry Honors VMI Legacy and Tradition This magnificent Fabergé-style egg locket hides a surprise that would please the master himself. Fashioned from 925 (millesimal fineness) sterling silver and 24kt gold vermeil, this inaugural locket honors the service and legacy of the graduates and families of Virginia Military Institute. Featuring exquisite guilloché patterns covered with hand-applied Italian enamels, this locket is adorned with the “VMI” monogram on both sides. The piece opens to reveal the VMI shako, the traditional parade hat and recognizable cadet uniform item, hanging from a gold chain. This truly unique piece of jewelry was handmade in the United States by immigrant Russian master jewelers in the same style and tradition as the czar’s treasured pieces. Attractive and indicative of the quality expected by alumni, this special gift includes your choice of an 18- , 20- or 24-inch gold-filled chain, manufacturer’s certificate of authenticity and an exquisite presentation box. Suitable for wear with formal-, business or casual attire, these lockets are wonderful keepsakes and conversation pieces. Pricing is as follows: VMI Locket Shako Pendant only

The locket is adorned with the VMI Spider monogram on both sides. Above, the shako is displayed.

$124.99 plus shipping $34.99 plus shipping

Shipping cost for Locket and Pendant: $6.00 ground, $15.00 overnight

To order, call 800/444-1839, or mail a check or money order to The VMI Alumni Association, Inc., P. O. Box 932, Lexington, Virginia 24450. To order online, go to About the manufacturer: For nearly two decades, The Artel Collection has provided the most creative, original and inspired assortment of egg pendants to major Fabergé exhibits across the United States. The manufacturer is currently the source of original egg pendants offered at numerous museum shops, jewelry stores and fine gift shops across the United States and abroad. 2010-Issue 4

When opened, the locket reveals the VMI shako hanging from a gold chain.


VMI Spirit Transcends Generations in Nay Family VMI is rich in tradition, challenge and discipline, and every cadet becomes a thread in the fabric that holds the Institute together. This is the story of two generations of VMI alumni, one who served in World War II and a second who greatly admire their sacrifice. In the Nay family, the latter felt the former’s story must be shared with all alumni, as it well demonstrates the bond formed among cadets at a very special place, the important lessons learned through cadetship and a spirit that cannot be broken. Robert E. (Bob) Nay ’44 was a gung-ho VMI cadet who loved the Institute and his country. Therefore, when Superintendent Charles E. Kilbourne, class of 1894, asked his class of seconds to leave school early to serve in World War II, Nay did so, willingly. “The superintendent reminded us of the special education and training we had received at VMI and then asked for volunteers to graduate early and enter the armed forces right away,” recalled Nay. “To a man, our entire class stepped forward. It still sends chills up my spine when I think about it.” That was in January 1944. By spring, Nay had met the girl of his dreams. He married her in September and was on his way to France in October. By November, the platoon leader and his fellow soldiers in the Army’s 100th Infantry Division were embroiled in combat with the Germans near Baccarat, France. Between Christmas Day 1944 and Jan. 9, Nay experienced the most intense combat of his time at war. The latter portion of the fighting was in response to Operation North Wind, the last major German offensive of the

Second World War on the Western Front. “We went on the defensive, because Patton took his Third Army out of the line north of us and wheeled north to attack the Germans in the Battle of the Bulge,” he said. “The Seventh Army had to spread out to cover the Third Army’s line, as well as it original sector. As things turned out, the 100th Division ended up on the extreme left flank, and our regiment and company were the most left units of all.” On Jan. 6, Nay and his platoon were assigned to hold a position west of Rimling, France. Early on the morning of Jan. 8, the position was overrun by the enemy, and Nay and his men were forced to withdraw to the outskirts of town. The company was attacked 24 hours later, and Nay

and some of his fellow soldiers were taken prisoner. Nay said his captors forced thousands of prisoners of war (POW) to lay face up on the snowy side of a hill for more than 12 hours while U.S. Army-Air Forces were bombing nearby. They were transported to another location and then to a POW camp near Hammelburg, Germany. In late March, Gen. George S. Patton, class of 1907, sent in a task force behind the German lines to liberate the camp. However, only 300 of the 800 prisoners were freed; Nay was among them. They rode out of the camp on tanks and half tracks but were soon attacked by German forces. Nay was recaptured and sent to Nuremburg, where he and his fellow prisoners experienced bombing attacks by Allied Forces. He was transferred to Munich and then on to a camp in Moosburg via a dangerous train journey. “On the train to Moosburg, the Allies conducted a massive bombing raid and hit the engine of the train,” Nay recalled. “The POWs ran out into the field and formed ‘POW’ with their bodies. As the P-51s did a fly by, they noticed the POW formation, tilted their wings and flew off.” While the prisoners weren’t abused physically, life at camp was unpleasant, and Nay and his fellow prisoners kept their mind off the situation by looking forward to their next meal. True nourishment for Nay was the VMI Spirit, which kept him going, as well. Patton’s forces came to the rescue again in May 1945, and Nay was liberated for the last time. Photo far left: The Nay family owned a shoe store in Wheeling, West Virginia. Photo left: Nay assisting a little girl.



heroism and wartime experience, he shared it with his friend, Jim Joustra ’76. Joustra, too, was moved and encouraged Bill to share it with other generations of VMI alumni and cadets. “What a great testament to the VMI Brother Rat system and the utter loyalty VMI men and women have for each other,” said Bill Nay. “Would there be anything more welcome for my dad to have heard but the words, ‘Brother Rat’?” What Bill’s father did reveal to his children over the years was the magical time he experienced in Lexington when he got to know their mother, Jean. A native of Staunton, Virginia, Jean Baylor

Nay was a long term Rotarian and never missed a Rotary meeting. The photo above shows Nay when he was president of the organization.

For a young man who had experienced the horrors of war and capture by the enemy twice, freedom was made even sweeter when Nay heard the words, “Hey, Brother Rat.” His good friend, Bob Mathews ’44, found Nay’s name on the prison roster and made sure he was on the first wave to be liberated. A friendship rekindled in Germany would last for many years back in the states. Nay’s son, Bill ’77, was moved to tears when he heard that story for the first time just six years ago. For most of his life, his father would not speak about his time in the war. After Bill learned about his father’s

met Nay on a blind date at McCrum’s Drug in Lexington in spring 1944. That spring, Baylor accompanied Nay to dances at VMI where they were serenaded by the music of Glenn Miller, Tommy Dorsey, Artie Shaw and Frank Sinatra. Nay graduated from VMI in June, and a September wedding was planned in Staun-

A telegram from Nay to his wife notifying her that he was safe and clippings announcing that the family shoe store had closed for the day in celebration.

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ton. However, last-minute changes in Nay’s military orders forced the couple to move their wedding to the home of Nay’s aunt and uncle in New York City. After a two-night honeymoon, Nay reported to camp each day and told Jean that if he didn’t come home by mid-afternoon, he had gone to war. “Like all VMI men, Dad kept his VMI honor close to him throughout the war, and he never broke his honor to his country,” said Bill Nay. “I find it impressive that he obeyed orders and never told my mother what day he would deploy. That was a difficult task for a new groom.” While Nay fought in France, Jean Nay kept the home fires burning. In January 1945, a call came from the War Department to let her know that Nay was missing and feared dead. Her hopes were raised in February

by a letter from a man in Michigan who learned from a short-wave radio transmission that Nay was alive and in a POW camp. She wasn’t informed by the War Department of details of his capture in January until mid-March. The couple was reunited that summer, and the war came to an end. Nay and his wife moved to Wheeling, West Virginia, where he worked for his father’s shoe store. In 1960, the family had grown to six, and they moved to northern Virginia, where Nay embarked on a long and successful career in real estate. He and his wife currently live in Woodbridge, Virginia. Bill Nay didn’t know about the strength his father drew from VMI during World War II when he began his college search, although it would have been a powerful recruiting tool. His father did encourage his son to give the Institute a shot. “Dad said I had good skills and that he thought VMI would refine them,” said Bill. “Now, I know firsthand that VMI gives you more than a regular college education. The VMI Spirit, the honor and discipline – you take that with you when you leave VMI, and that’s something very special.”


Shuba ’61 Challenges Others to Help Wounded Warriors When it comes to supporting America’s wounded warriors, Lou Shuba’61 puts his mettle to the pedal. Shuba, from Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, is a fundraising bicycle rider, well on his way to challenging VMI brethren to do the same and join him on the road. For the second year in a row, Shuba lent support to the “Face of America” (FOA) bicycle ride, an event produced and hosted by World T.E.A.M. (The Exceptional Athlete Matters) Sports. The 10th anniversary, 110-mile, ride began on Saturday, April 24th, in Washington, D.C., and ended with a dramatic arrival on Sunday, April 25th, near the Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, Civil War battlefield. An increasing number of servicemen and women are returning from Iraq and Afghanistan with severe injuries. This ride was intended to honor and thank these young men and women for their service, as well as honoring active duty and retired military personnel participating in the event. Like all FOA rides, this one was about meeting challenges, providing a sense of camaraderie and developing the lasting knowledge that all of the participants are integral members of their team. Shuba, an amputee who earned a special recognition prior to the ride, raised over $11,200 for FOA – more than any of the 400 riders. His Brother Rats and teammates contributed nearly 60 percent of this total. Class agent Sal Vitale ’61 assisted Shuba in his fundraising efforts. Up to this point, Shuba has been the sole VMI alumnus at FOA events, but he hopes to change this and get more Institute and alumni involvement. Ideally, he envisions a VMI team participating in future FOA rides, and he plans to discuss this with the school’s administration. Although other VMI alumni are not on board yet, the Institute already has a presence in FOA through the school’s Center for Leadership and Ethics. U.S. Army Lt. Col. Greg Gadson, a native Virginian and the center’s first Leader in Residence, has ridden in two FOA events. The 44-year-old West Point graduate lost both legs above the knees when hit by a roadside bomb in Baghdad in May 2007. He uses a hand-cranked bike. “It’s just a huge pump-up … an adrenalin flow of patriotism,” Gadson said of FOA. “You feel so proud to be an American.” In the 2010 ride, as many as 50 were wounded warriors. Gadson encourages participation in these worthwhile events. “You see people coming out, taking time out of their day to watch some guys that have served their nation pass by on bikes,” said Gadson. In the last two years, Shuba has been there for most of it. In 2009, he rode the first leg – 65 miles from Frederick, Maryland, to Gettysburg. In 2010, he went the entire distance and volunteered to inspect and prepare bicycles beforehand. Prior to this year’s event, Jeffrey Brandt, CEO and founder of the Gettysburg-based Ability Prosthetics & Orthotics, Inc., wrote, “We are proud to sponsor this event, as one of our own patients, Louis Shuba of Gettysburg, will be riding [in it]. Lou is an amazing man [with whom] I had the pleasure to climb Mt. Washington a few years ago. A true inspiration, he definitely embodies the World T.E.A.M. philosophy and said it best when he said, “A veteran is someone who, at one point in his/her life, wrote a blank check made payable to the United States of America for an amount up


to and including [his or her] life. Many times, as we go down the road of life, we are asked to give. These heroes volunteered and ended up giving more than most of us can imagine. They have not, however, lost the desire to participate in challenging events as a part of their rehabilitation.” As stated on its Web site, “World T.E.A.M. Sports is a registered nonprofit organization dedicated to creating soul-stirring opportunities for individuals of all abilities through the power of sports. By bringing athletes of all cultures, with and without disabilities, together as one TEAM, World T.E.A.M. enables fully inclusive TEAMS to accomplish goals beyond what is thought possible. World T.E.A.M. Sports recognizes sports as the true global commonality and believes that through such activities, the world can grow stronger and unite as powerful communities. World T.E.A.M. Sports is more than an organization; it is a movement to change the way the world perceives athletes.” For more information about World T.E.A.M. Sports and Face of America, go to http://www. Editor’s Note: The preceding article was co-written by Robert (B.J.) Small – a fellow rider, journalist and friend of Shuba’s – and the Alumni Review staff, with background information borrowed from the World T.E.A.M. Sports Web site. Our thanks to Mr. Small for his efforts and to World T.E.A.M. Sports.


Memorial Reading Room in Library Honors Fallen Brothers of Class of 1969 by J. Bolling Williamson ’60

Sept. 9, 1965: Three hundred and eighty-two new Rats signed the registration book, tucked in their chins and entered Jackson Arch to begin a life-changing experience. Half a world away, events were unfolding in South Vietnam which would have an even greater impact on many in the class of 1969. Their four years at VMI would be punctuated by the occasional call at SRC for a moment of silence in honor of an alumnus who had been killed in action, and one alumnus recalls an ROTC instructor, who had just returned, telling his class that “… many of you will hear the bullets whistle before this thing is over.” These events were occurring during the time of mandatory commissioning; consequently, the cadets knew that if they were offered a commission at graduation, they would have to accept it. The alternative, for many, would be an appointment with their local draft board. By the time of graduation in June 1969, the build-up of troops in Vietnam was in high gear, and most of the graduates were called upon to The Memorial Reading Room in VMI’s Preston serve. Four members of the class Library, dedicated by the class of 1969 to honor their fallen brothers. were subsequently killed in action, as listed below:

Blair 2010-Issue 4

Thomas George Blair Jr. (Springfield, Virginia) – Distinguished Military Student, Deans List. His Bomb write-up noted that “… being an Army brat, it seemed only natural that Tom would pick VMI as the place to develop for four years.” Serving in the U.S. Army, Capt. Blair died on May 29, 1971, of wounds received while leading his infantry unit. His awards include the Silver Star, the Bronze Star with “V” device, Purple Heart, Air Medal and Army Commendation Medal. Arthur Lee Galloway Jr. (Williamsburg, Virginia) – Distinguished Military Student, member of the swimming team. His Bomb write-up said, “Most of us came here undecided, unsure and scared – not so with Lee. A Rat in name only, he soon saw through the façade of the system Galloway …” Serving in the U.S. Army, Lt. Galloway was killed in action on March 27, 1971, while leading his infantry platoon. His awards include the Bronze Star with “V” device and second oak leaf cluster, Purple Heart with oak leaf cluster, and Air Medal with six clusters. John William Kennedy (Arlington, Virginia) – Honor Court; Co-captain, wrestling team; Co-captain, soccer team. In the Bomb, his write-up said, “Respected by his Brother Rats, Jack is one of those cadets (Cont. next page.) 13

who has given more to and will carry more away from VMI than any diploma is capable of symbolizing.” A pilot in the


U.S. Air Force, Lt. Kennedy was killed in action when his light reconnaissance aircraft was shot down on Aug. 16, 1971. His awards include the Distinguished Flying Cross, Purple Heart and Air Medal with two clusters. Frank Wright Webb (Kenbridge, Virginia) – Webb left VMI in the spring of his Rat year to enlist in the U.S. Army. He completed basic training at the top of his class and was assigned to Infantry Officer Candidate School. Lt. Webb was killed in action on May 5, 1968, while leading his infantry unit. His awards include the Silver Star, Bronze Star with two oak leaf clusters and “V” devices, Purple Heart with oak leaf cluster, and Air Medal. On the occasion of their 25th Reunion, the class of 1969 dedicated the periodical reading room, now named the Memorial Reading Room, in Preston Library Webb in honor of their Brother Rats who died leading at the front with unflinching courage and integrity. Located just inside the entrance to the library, the Memorial Reading Room has become a popular spot for cadets to study and relax, and it serves as a tribute to the service of these four men, along with other class “I do not mourn our fallen dead; rather, of 1969 members thank God that such men lived.” who answered their country’s -Gen. George S. Patton, class of 1907 call to duty.

VMI Alumni Set Sail on Adventures For me, my craft is sailing on, Through mists today, clear seas anon. Whate’er the final harbor be ’Tis good to sail upon the sea! “The Voyage” by John Kendrick Bangs For three VMI alumni, water is a powerful, driving force in their lives. Two have sailed since childhood, while a third picked up the hobby as an adult. All are grateful for the friends they have made through their interest and love of sailing, as well as have benefited from the camaraderie that surrounds the sport. Much like the Institute, sailing has challenged them, rewarded them and even provided shelter in the storm.

John Dodge ’83 The magnitude 7.0 earthquake that struck Haiti on Jan. 12, 2010, sent a shockwave of emotion around the world. Richmond, Virginia, is a long way from this impoverished Caribbean country, but John Dodge ’83, and his wife, Linda, were moved into action and turned to their friends in the sailing community to help strangers in need. “I had sailed by Haiti on races to Jamaica but had never been on the island,” said Dodge, an avid sailor. “To lose so many people in such a short period of time was devastating, and those left behind were without shelter or had plastic tents that just wouldn’t last. I’m very involved in the sport of sailing and realized the types of


materials we use for sails might be of help.” The Dodges established Project Sails to Save Haiti, a donation program designed to collect used sails, spinnaker poles, lines and other materials that could be helpful in constructing shelter for those affected by the earthquake. As Dodge expected, the sailing community has rallied around the project. He and his wife targeted sailing clubs surrounding the Chesapeake Bay, but the project has attracted the attention of boaters from as far west as California and north to Maine. In addition, Dodge secured a partnership with North Sails, a leading sailmaker, to provide drop-off points at all of its U.S. lofts. The Dodges then transport the donations to Miami, where more than 1,500 sails have been shipped to Haiti so far. In August, Dodge visited the country for the first time with Dr. Aldy Castor of the Haitian Resource Development Foundation to meet with public officials to make sure the donated sails are reaching those in need. Witnessing the devastation of post-quake Haiti was a powerful experience, but Dodge returned feeling good about the future of the project. “There is absolute, total devastation in Haiti, and you can smell it in the air,” he said. “I saw areas where the media wasn’t allowed – you’ve never seen anything like it in your life. However, my spirits were lifted when we visited the town of Aquin, about 90 miles outside of Port au Prince, where a fishing and agriculture academy is being established.” Funded in part by the Haitian Resource Development Foundation,


the academy is designed to teach best practices in fishing and to enhance students’ ability to survive and earn a living. Dodge said donated sails will be cut to size for fishing boats built by academy students, increasing their chances at success. “While the devastation I experienced was hard to witness, the visit to Haiti has given me confidence that the sails will get to those who need them,” he said. “We now have a system in place for delivery, and the sails at the academy will be used as they were intended.” Dodge came away from the trip knowing there are some parts of the country that may never be rebuilt but also feeling like his efforts aren’t in vain. “It is unbelievable to see the sailing community come together Photo at left: John Dodge ’83, second from left, at the helm. Photo above: Dodge and his wife, Linda, at right, with sons Justin and Kyle, standing in front of a truck flatbed filled with donated sails. Photo below: Donated sailing materials are also being used by an academy in Aquin (90 miles from Port au Prince) that is designed to teach students fishing and agriculture for both survival and income. In the photo below, Dodge and local fishermen hold up the “Sails to Save Haiti” banner during his visit to their village in August 2010. Photo bottom, left: An example of the earthquake’s massive destruction.

like it has, but there’s so much more to do,” said Dodge. “We have a short memory in this country. Earlier this year, Haiti was on the front page of the newspaper every day; now, it’s in the middle of the paper, if we’re lucky, once a week. We’ve got to make sure that our unused resources in this country keep getting to those in need.” For more information on the sail donation effort, contact Dodge at, or join the Project Sails to Save Haiti Facebook page.

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Thomas Hall ’71 Tom Hall didn’t learn how to sail until after he graduated from college, but the Chicago-based photojournalist thought he could turn a sailboat into a means for traveling to produce news and feature documentaries. The limitations of his budget led him to Aran, a boat built in steel with a classic wooden boat design that had been left uncovered and abandoned for six years. Hall purchased her in 1986 and renamed her Aquila. He said her masts were down, with bad paint and open seams, and the standing and running rigging spread like spaghetti across the deck. There were holes in the hull and damage to the woodwork, as well. “My dad owned a service station, so I restored cars growing up,” said Hall, who hails from Virginia. “I also was a model maker, so restoring the boat seemed possible. It’s expensive work but not as much when you do most of it yourself.” Hall was told that the cutter-rigged yawl was custom-designed and built in 1951 for $100,000; he got it for $8,000 – the cost of delinquent storage charges. He spent evenings and weekends working on parts of the boat in his apartment and at the boatyard. In 1989, he moved her to a boatyard near Annapolis, Maryland, and continued his labor of love. (Cont. next page.)


“Labor and time involved in the restoration were enormous,” said Hall. “Ferreting out rust was tedious, dirty and uncomfortable. The exterior woodwork was equally challenging to replace, repair and maintain. By the time I was done, all systems were repaired or replaced, including exhaust, fuel, plumbing, new head and fixtures.” The restoration, which lasted 16 years, was a big part of Hall’s life, and after he moved the boat to Maryland, Aquila became not only his passion but his home. He launched the boat several years ago but kept her close to shore. The man who dreamed of chasing his journalism career in Aquila by the age of 45, found himself 60 with arthritis and a different game plan. “I could sail Aquila short-handed or by myself, but last summer I decided to give her up,” he said. “So much time and effort went into her restoration. I could have sold her but decided to keep the spirit of the boat by doing something positive with it.” Last fall, Hall donated Aquila to Planet Hope, an organization designed to give at-risk, inner-city teens opportunities they usually don’t have. Sailing is a good way for them to learn teamwork, communication and other skills that can lead to success. “Aquila is an extraordinary boat and one of the best for sailing,” said Hall, who now lives on a motor yacht in Baltimore. “I’m a bit of a romantic, and I’m glad she’ll be going somewhere interesting and used to help young men and women.”

Thomas Hall ’71 in front of Aquila, the boat which took 16 years to restore and which became both his passion and his home.

Rives Potts ’71 A lifelong sailor, Rives Potts had no idea when he graduated from VMI that his career would revolve around his passion. Nearly 40 years later, he has sailed and worked with the best, and he counts himself fortunate to be able to share his love of sailing with family and friends. After earning his M.B.A. at the University of Virginia, Potts went to work for a boat builder in New York. In 1979, he crewed aboard Ted Turner’s Tenacious during the Fastnet Race, a biennial offshore yachting race from England to Ireland. Storms wreaked havoc over the race, and 15 sailors were killed, but Tenacious lived up to its name and was victorious.


Potts’ performance caught the attention of another famous sailor, and he landed the job of project manager and crewman with the Freedom-Enterprise Syndicate led by Dennis Conner. The team’s hard work paid off, and Freedom earned the coveted spot of representing the United States in the 1980 America’s Cup race at Newport, Rhode Island. Freedom defeated Australian challenger, Australia, four races to one. “I was part of five America’s Cup series and sailed in the best regattas with the best people,” said Potts. “It is the pinnacle of the sport, and I was involved not only with the sailing end of it but also with building the boats. It is a super thrill to be a part of it but also a lot of hard work.” Potts’ work in professional sailing took him around the world, including serving as Conner’s crew boss. The pair sailed with royalty and other celebrities during their travels. The VMI alumnus now calls Connecticut home, where he is general manager of Brewer Pilots Point Marina, a full-service, 50-acre marina in Westbrook with access to the Long Island Sound. He’s now racing at the amateur level and is just as successful. In June, Potts captained a crew of 12 in the Newport Bermuda Race, a 635-mile ocean race that usually lasts three to six days and mostly is out of sight Potts ’71 of land. In keeping with the family-oriented tradition of the race, Potts’ crew included his two sons and a nephew, one of his best friends from his America’s Cup days and several other family friends. At the helm of Carina, Potts was victorious once again, winning Class 3 and taking the coveted St. David’s Lighthouse Trophy, as well as many other awards. “The Newport Bermuda Race is one of the three biggest races, and it was wonderful to take part with my two sons,” said Potts. “I got the Carina to sail with my sons, and it’s been awhile since both of them have sailed with me, as they are Marines who have served in Iraq.” Of the three biggest races in the world, Potts has won the Newport Bermuda Race and the Fastnet. He would like to win the third, the Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race, which is widely considered to be one of the most difficult yacht races in the world. “Ocean racing is a 24-hour deal, and VMI certainly helped me develop a strong work ethic,” said Potts. “As a skipper, your job is to build a team, and VMI was helpful in developing that skill, as well.” With his strong track record and skills as a sailor, the Sydney to Hobart Race is likely on the horizon for this VMI alumnus.


Wynn ’04 Follows Career Path in Environmental Economics Todd Wynn couldn’t have predicted where he would be today when he matriculated at VMI from Woodbridge, Virginia, 10 years ago. The young cadet planned on a career in the military but instead decided to go to graduate school. After completing a bachelor’s degree in business and economics at California State University, Long Beach, Wynn earned a master’s degree in international and developmental economics

“In addition to business and economics, I was interested in public policy, so environmental economics seemed to be a good direction to pursue. My life seems to be a random walk, but I’m getting paid to do something I’m passionate about, and I love it.” While many students of public policy pursue jobs in government, Wynn has chosen a different path. In his role as vice president of the Cascade Policy Institute, he promotes free market-based alternatives to state and local issues in Oregon, work that sometimes attracts the attention of interested parties in Washington, D.C. “My research shows how economic freedom leads to a reduction in energy use,” said Wynn. “We’ve done a lot of work on auditing carbon offset programs, and we see a lot of waste and fraud in this area. Our research on the cap-and-trade schemes and other mandated CO 2 caps create a commodity literally ‘out of thin air’ that can be taxed, gamed and profited from, all at the expense of the consumer.” Wynn’s job not only is to conduct research but also to make sure it reaches the public. He is focused on marketing the Cascade Policy In his role as vice president of the Cascade Policy Institute and an expert on Institute’s work in state, local and climate change and energy policy, Todd Wynn ’04 often is interviewed by print national media, as well as on blogs and broadcast journalists and has been a guest on radio programs, too. and to the legislators who affect decision-making. from the University of San Francisco. It was “In some situations, we hope our work will during his studies there that he worked on help kill bills, introduce bills, and influence and climate change impact research with the Inter- improve other bills,” he said. national Crop Research Institute of the SemiWynn has become passionate about being a Arid Tropics in India. He produced a report on citizen of Oregon and not only enjoys the work the possible damages that would occur from an he does but also the environment in which he increase in global temperatures and potential lives. The Pacific Northwest offers quite a bit adaptation methods for rural Indians. for a lover of the out of doors. Wynn’s work on climate change and energy “I’m an avid kayaker, camper and hiker, and policy attracted the attention of the Cascade that comes in part from my days at VMI,” said Policy Institute, Oregon’s free-market think Wynn. “I loved being on the Maury and the tank that focuses on state and local issues in beauty of the Lexington area.” Oregon. He joined the staff in 2008 as a policy If Wynn has his way, his work will help imanalyst and was promoted to vice president in prove the nation’s environmental quality but April 2010. in a way that will foster market-based policies “Some of the best education I received was at that preserve individual liberty and economic VMI,” said Wynn, who lives in Portland, Oregon. opportunity. 2010-Issue 4


Largest Matriculating Class Enters VMI Dealing with large classes of incoming 4th class cadets is becoming commonplace at VMI, and that is a good thing, considering the Institute has surpassed its goal of increasing the size of the Corps of Cadets to 1,500. The class of 2014, consisting of 501 new cadets, is the largest ever to matriculate at VMI and represents a growth of 2.24

Members of the incoming class were selected from among 1,795 applicants. More than 80 are children of alumni and nearly 60 percent of the incoming Rats are from Virginia. Twenty-nine cadets are transfer students. “Not only did we have the most competitive applicant pool we’ve ever had,” said Col. Vern Beitzel ’72, director of admissions, “we

percent over last year’s matriculating class. The class includes 59 women – 11.8 percent of the class of 2014 – the most women to matriculate in a single class. The VMI post is well prepared for these numbers, with Old, New and Third Barracks construction and renovation completed over the summer and a new obstacle course ready for use in the ongoing Military and Leadership Field Training Grounds project.



think they’re strong in character and leadership as well.” “With more Rats, we brought back more upper class cadets to help shoulder the load,” said Col. Thomas Trumps ’79, commandant of cadets. “We have had to train and trust cadre, regimental and battalion staffs, along with all company leaders, to execute the training plan, and the larger classes are providing more leadership opportunities for the cadre corporals and sergeants.” While the incoming cadets are exposed to the same Spartan conditions as every other class in recent years, they have moved into newly furnished cadet rooms, thanks to completion of the Barracks renovation, said Trumps. All cadet rooms have been refitted with new desks, chairs, cabinets and shoe shine stools. With all three Barracks fully occupied with new cadets on the

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fourth and fifth stoops, for the very first time the Institute has an expanded operating environment that involves all of the courtyards and Barracks. Editor’s Note: The preceding article is a compilation of excerpts from two articles by VMI Communications and Marketing, one of which appeared in the Institute Report.




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ASSOCIATION NEWS ASSOCIATION NEWS Hawaii Chapter Gathers for New Market Day The Hawaii Chapter had a New Market get-together on May 14, 2010, at Camp Smith’s Sunset Lanai overlooking Pearl Harbor. Attending were, from left, Michele and Jonathan Fredericks ’07, Ian Brooks ’97, Russ Henriet ’07, Jessica and Wilson Nance ’06, Diana Khaksar ’06, Mike Ceroli ’85, Greg Barnekoff ’07, Angela Ceroli, Ken Wiseman ’06, Air Force Lt. Gen. Dan Darnell ’75, Mike Chang ’85, Tom Smyth ’58, Melinda and Jim Rice ’83, David Hudock ’97, Shelly White (related to Jeff White ’84), Jacob Hong ’88, Jeff White ’84 and Russ Takata ’74.

Southern California Chapters Commemorate New Market Day On May 15, 2010, New Market Day, members of three Southern California chapters met for a picnic and New Market ceremony at Doheny Beach State Park in Dana Point, California. The San Diego, Inland Empire and Los Angeles/Orange County Chapters were represented. Photo courtesy Alumni Association Far West Regional Director Bob Clingenpeel ’69. Additional information provided by Greater Los Angeles Chapter President Matthew Hemenez.

New York Chapter Meets for Dinner


Alumni from the New York City and Long Island Chapter met for dinner on May 26, 2010. Chapter members included President Robert Munno ’81, Regional Director Felix Wolkowitz ’75 and John Gibney ’80,

recently named to the VMI Foundation Board of Trustees. Visiting with the chapter were Adam Volant ’88 from the Alumni Association and also Melissa Williams ’01, M.D., who traveled from Maine to join the group.


VMI Old Corps ... Back Then

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ASSOCIATION NEWS Norfolk Chapter Meets at Ocean View Pier 1

The Norfolk Chapter met on June 5, 2010, at the Ocean View Fishing Pier. Local alumni from the Hampton Roads area gathered, and in addition to a brief update from Alumni Association Executive Vice President Adam Volant ’88, the chapter enjoyed a myriad of door prizes and a raffle. Chapter President Douglas Burdett ’82 was ably assisted by Regional Director Asa Page ’79.






ASSOCIATION NEWS Norfolk Chapter Meets at Ocean View Pier


Photo Captions Photo 1: The class of 1980 had the best representation at the event, including W.V. Dunn, Dixon Tucker, Bob White and Craig Wilson. Photo 2: Capt. Asa Page ’79, left, and Douglas Burdett ’82, right, both serve Hampton Roads alumni as regional directors of The VMI Alumni Association. They are elected to serve the association and represent area alumni as part of the board of directors. Photo 3: Alumni climbed stairs to get to the top level of Ocean View Pier in Norfolk for the chapter event. Photo 4: During a raffle giveaway, the chapter president asked all alumni who were in the #1 Club during their cadetship to step forward and be recognized. Photo 5: Current Cadet Mike Joyce ’13 and Frank Campion ’89 met at the chapter event. Photo 6: David Adams ’09 linked up with his dyke, Joshua Visconti ’12. Also pictured is Cadet Katie Gill ’13. Photo 7: Members of several classes from the 1960s era enjoyed the sunset and the company. Photo 8: Class of 2002 Brother Rats Naomi Pike and Rachel McGraw shared stories during the event. Photo 9: Joe Keller ’36 was the most senior alumnus attending the event with his wife, Raye. Photo 10: Some alumni took advantage of the shade and the opportunity to talk with one another.



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ASSOCIATION NEWS VMI Friends and Family Attend Busch Gardens Event Alumni and friends of VMI gathered on June 19, 2010, at Busch Gardens amusement park in Williamsburg, Virginia. Enjoying the day at the park, alumni received special pricing for park entrance and a meal together.

Camp Lejeune/Crystal Coast Chapter Inaugural Meeting and Family Picnic

On Sunday, June 27, 2010, the newly formed Crystal Coast Chapter held a family picnic and its first chapter meeting at Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, Hospital Point. Some of those attending the picnic were, from left, photo at left, Stephen Skakandy ’01, John Holmes (Honarary ’82), John Moder ’98 and Josh Lewis ’96. Photo above: Travis Stephenson ’02 with his wife and baby.




Pacific Northwest Chapter Holds Summer Social The Pacific Northwest Chapter, located in Seattle, Washington, met for their Chapter Summer Social on Aug. 1, 2010, at the home of Lissa and Bob McDowell ’68. Pete Farmer ’68, chapter president, greeted 1 area alumni and organized the event. The group enjoyed catching up on local alumni news and also conducted a chapter business meeting, led by Farmer. Photo 1: 1st Lt. John Arthur ’08 and wife Kathryn. Photo 2: Walter Witschard ’60. Photo 3: From left, Roland Staiano ’84, Bob McDowell ’68, Pete Farmer ’68, Kyle Farmer ’13 and Larry Stetson ’68. Photo 4: David and Mara Pitkethly ’58. Photo 5: From left, Tom Boyer ’00, Charlie and Christine Bennett ’99, Randy St. Clair ’90 and George Coulbourn ’60 (seated). Photo 6: From left, Pete Farmer, Dave Tribolet ’71, Richard Wilson ’72 and Bob McDowell. Photo 7: Chapter members and guests. Conducting the meeting is Pete Farmer, chapter president.


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ASSOCIATION NEWS Ship Christened in Honor of Gen. John A.B. Dillard Jr. ’42

On June 25, 2010, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, San Francisco District, christened their newest command vessel, the John A.B. Dillard Jr., in honor of Maj. Gen. John A.B. Dillard Jr. ’42. Attending the christening ceremony were, from left, Maj. David Kaulfers ’90, San Francisco District; Brig. Gen. Rock Donahue ’83, commander, South Pacific Division; Jack Dillard, Maj. Gen. Dillard’s son; and Lt. Col. Laurence Farrell ’90, commander, San Francisco District. During his Army career, Dillard had commanded the South Pacific Division of the Corps of Engineers, where the Dillard is stationed, and later commanded the U.S. Army Engineer Command in Vietnam where he was killed in action on May 12, 1970. The Dillard is a multi-purpose vessel capable of serving as a command center, hydro surveyor, dive operations platform and debris remover. An 86-foot, catamaran-hull fast boat, the vessel was built by Seattle-based Kvichak Marine Industries, according to an article that appeared in the Ventura County Star, forwarded to the Review staff by Bill Hinman ’53.

Have You Ever Considered Returning to VMI to Work? VMI advertises most faculty and staff employment opportunities on the employment page of the VMI Web site (http://www/ Full-time positions offer competitive salaries and an excellent benefits package. The online application system that VMI implemented in 2009 allows you to submit all of your application materials online and acknowledges receipt of your application. The system has saved postage costs for applicants and VMI, and reviewing materials online saves copying and storage costs, as well. Through its membership in the Mid-Atlantic Higher Education Recruitment Consortium, VMI has also partnered with area public and private institutions (including W&L, UVa, JMU, Virginia Tech and all Virginia community colleges) to advertise position vacancies on the consortium’s Web site. Check out the employment page today!



ASSOCIATION NEWS Alumni Play in First Central Virginia S.A.M.E. Golf Tournament Taking part in the First Annual Central Virginia Post of the Society of American Military Engineers (S.A.M.E.) Golf Tournament held in Fort Lee, Virginia, were, from left, Grady Andrews ’79, John Barr ’77, Bill Robson ’75, John Karafa ’84 and Mark Reilly ’88.

All Alumni Are Cordially Invited to the Lynchburg Chapter Valentine’s Hop Remember those cadet days when you brought your date to the formal VMI Hop? The Lynchburg Chapter has recreated that event and invites you and your guest to meet other alumni, enjoy music by the VMI Commanders and a memorable evening together. The Valentine’s Hop will be held at Boonsboro Country Club in Lynchburg, Virginia, on Saturday, Feb. 5, 2011, beginning at 6:30

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p.m. In addition to the live entertainment, a full buffet – including tenderloin, shrimp and pasta stations, open bar, and dessert tables – will be served. Valet parking will be provided. The cost is $65 per person by Dec. 31, 2010, and $75 per person after that date. Dress is Black Tie optional. (Photos shown are from the 2009 Hop.) Contact Lynchburg Chapter President Christopher Boswell ’00 at or Chapter Representative John McCarthy ’87 at or mailing address 3241 Landon Street, Lynchburg, VA 24503-3111.


ASSOCIATION NEWS Kramer ’03 Joins Alumni Association Staff The Alumni Association is pleased to welcome Nichole Kramer ’03 to its staff as the New Cadet Recruiting coordinator. Her first day on board was Aug. 23, 2010. Kramer graduated from VMI with a degree in history and commissioned into the Marine Corps in which she served as an adjutant and staff officer at the battalion and higher headquarters level. In addition to receiving recognition for exemplary service, Nichole served two tours in Iraq before returning to complete her final active duty assignment in Quantico, Virginia. As a cadet, Kramer was a member of the Bomb staff and track team, and she worked as a Summer Transition Program counselor. In her position as New Cadet Recruiting coordinator, Kramer has the opportunity to apply what she learned at VMI and in the Marine Corps – specifically in the areas of training, event organization and working with groups – to effectively contribute to the Alumni Association’s mission. “Nichole brings an interesting blend of skills and experience from the Marine Corps and from her experience as a cadet,” said Alumni Association Executive Vice President Adam Volant ’88. “We’re very pleased to have her as a part of our staff, serving in this important role for both alumni and the Institute.”

Kramer ’03

Alums Support Air Relief Operations for Haiti

As part of Operation Unified Response (Haiti), the 12th Air Force (Air Force Southern), which is headquartered at Davis Monthan Air Force Base (AFB) near Tucson, Arizona, took part in air humanitarian relief efforts that occurred after the January 2010 earthquake in Haiti. Pictured above, from left, were Maj. John (Andy) McQuade ’97, Capt. Michael Haag ’03, and Maj. Corey Cheers ’94. Pictured at left, from left, were McQuade, Lt. Col. Edward Swanson ’90 and Cheers. McQuade, who traveled from the U.S. Air Force Academy in Colorado, and Cheers, from Langley AFB in Virginia, were sent to Davis Monthan to support the commander of Air Force Forces Staff. Haag is assigned to Air Combat Command, 12th Air Force, and Swanson provided his support from Air Combat Command at Langley AFB.





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Westminster Canterbury in Richmond Welcomes New Residents

Alumni and wives living at Westminster Canterbury in Richmond, Virginia, got together for cocktails and dinner to welcome new residents R.B. Barnes ’54 and his wife, Maya. According to Jo Ann Wicker O’Hara, who provided the photos on this page, special guest Jane Ferrell, widow of Nip Ferrell ’35, traveled from Charles City to attend the event. Present but not pictured were: Mary Easterly ’44; Harry Lee ’47 and Elizabeth; Buddy Metz ’45, D.O., and Dee; Charles Miller ’42 and Anne; Ed Smith ’50B and Sarah; Nancy Phillips ’44; and Bunny Tucker ’37. Mrs. O’Hara, widow of the late Robert O’Hara ’35, wrote about the evening, “A good time was had by all!”





Photo 1: JoAnn O’Hara, widow of Robert G. O’Hara ’35. Photo 2: John Halsey ’43 and wife Judith. Photo 3: The late Thomas Hupp Jr. ’44 and wife Juliet Goode-Hupp. Photo 4: Taz Ellett ’44 and Marguerite with Jane Ferrell, widow of Nip Ferrell ’35. Photo 5: New residents Maya and R.B. Barnes ’54 with Anne Scott, wife of Russell and widow of Fred Addison ’54. Photo 6: Juliet Goode-Hupp ’44; Janet Dennis, widow of O.D. Dennis ’43; and Jean Salley whose husband is John Salley ’47, D.D.S. Photo 7: Guest Russell Scott with Mary and George Hutter ’52. Photo 8: Ben Harmon ’49B and wife Page with Canny Pasco, widow of Merrill Pasco ’37.



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CLASSNOTES NOTES CLASS Jennifer, sent me an e-mail indicating Howard was doing fine but was getting a hip replacement this fall. Mary Nance, Owen B. Knight’s daughter, reports that his great-grandson, Kyle Owen Herndon, was recently inducted into Dear BRs and SRs, the Coast Guard Reserve at Fort Meade. It has been a joy and fulfilling pleasure to have served as your class agent these He carries his great-grandfather’s first past 15 years, but my declining health and name and is so very much like him. He has painful side effects tell me it’s time to bail always admired his great-granddad and has out. always wanted to serve his counAt this point in time, a nose try. He hopes to finish his college count of ’35 assures me we degree while serving and hopes to have six BRs and at least someday become an officer. O.B. eight SRs I am aware of, but was so very proud of his grandchilundoubtedly there are more dren and 10 great-grandchildren of the latter. and would be very proud of Kyle. I don’t know how many of Mary also keeps in contact with you have had the opportunity Misha Kadick’s widow and reto return to Lexington more ports she is doing well. recently, but if able, please I am sad to report the passing of do so, as it is an inspiring our BR William Henry Cox, M.D., sight with all the improvein May. His obituary is included in ments and new construction. the Taps section of this Review. And it was heart warming Finally, I am happy to report that to look down at the Athletic I came through my heart surgery in Field, note the world class Class of 1939: Paul Bigler’s widow, Roberta, with Max fine shape. I’ve been faithful in my features, and see the W&L Hopkins ’97 when he visited during summer 2010. The rehab exercises and am about to students, male and female, photo was taken on the Bigler’s back porch, which Roberta get back on the golf course myself. working out on the weekend said was one of Paul’s favorite places to sit. Marcy and I are still planning to go with our cadets. If you have to Russia with a group of my ’64 been a financial supporter of BRs and wives in late September. the Institute, you will feel rewarded with the one of Paul’s favorite places to sit. I reIt should be quite an experience. use of these funds. ceived a nice note from Evelyn Mathews Robert Smith And let me confess as one of the early indicating she had celebrated her birthday objectors, it was a joy to see the fine young and was doing fine. women who march in the ranks of every Bert Brayshaw called to tell me that company. his wife, Mary, had passed in June after a In closing, let me add, I remain very long illness. He is doing fine at his home proud to be an alumnus of my alma mater. As I talked to everyone for this report, at Magnolia Beach near Pt. Lavaca, TX. God bless ... Jim Sherman the dominant theme is the quiet way In talking with him I found out that he we are living our lives now that the big had graduated from a high school in South Frank Parker III ’64 Carolina that had only 11 grades and enreunion is past. For many, coming to Lexington was a sort of “Last Hoorah” of tered VMI when he was only 16! To then good time travelling. And so, we are all graduate as a civil engineer from VMI is testimony to native intelligence, hard work settling in for a period of gracious abiding and determination. That reminds me of the and reflecting on past glories. This seems to be another phase of the never-ending “Stonewall” quote we all memorized. Ira Saxe reports that he is doing OK kaleidoscope of life’s phases – each with Howard Golladay sent a post card from after undergoing prostate surgery in late their special meaningful significance. his home in San Diego saying that “we July. The recovery has been pretty tough, It makes me think, and I’m sure it will both now have cow tissue aortic valves.” but he plans to be back on the golf course He heard that it leaves one with a tendency remind you, too, of the times as cadets very soon. Bill Brand sent me an e-mail when we signed out a horse for a Wednesto “Moo” once in awhile, which I am indicating that he was doing fine and that day, Saturday or Sunday ride. As we not looking forward to. Marcy, my wife, Tickie is back in her house after the water returned to the stables, we would walk our says that I can honestly say that I’m a inundation and the cleanup, including remounts the last quarter mile, so they were real “Cowboy.” Howard’s granddaughter,


placement of the flooring. Tickie is due at Bill’s place for a few weeks to rest up from the ordeal. Max Hopkins, our honorary BR, went to Roanoke with his mother and son to visit Mrs. Bigler. She is doing well, although she recently had a mishap to her hand that will require surgery, but she is in great spirits and doing well otherwise. They had a lovely visit and lunch. A photo was taken on her back porch which was





CLASS NOTES cooled down by the time we reached the stables. Our inspiring horsemanship instructor, Col. Fray 1908, taught us to take proper care of our mounts that way, and we learned another lesson at VMI that may help us through this phase of our lives. So, now-a-days, if someone asks us how we are doing, we could say, “We are just walking our horses back to the stables.” – an alternative to Ben Hardaway’s colorful expression, “I’m just circling the drain.” This is being written in the time period when we are all getting in the mail the 2010-Issue 3 of the Alumni Review that reports on our 70th Reunion. It was great for the front and back inside covers to tell the story of the president of the class of ’40. I’m sure I speak for all of us in saying how appreciative we are for the Review editors to have featured our president’s inspiring action at the reunion in this prominent way. That same Walt Edens reports that his household is even happier now. His son, Sandy Edens ’72, and Diane Dooley were married June 19. All who met these delightful “minders” at our reunion were charmed, and we wish them a long and happy life together. It is interesting that the newlyweds had known each other in high school in 1967 and reconnected after they were both free by searching the Internet. Diane was living in San Diego but moved east to be near Sandy, and the rest is history, as they say. Diane is now working in admissions for a local community college. Walt goes to see his Dottie at least once a week, and she seems to be made happier by his visit. It is with great regret that I must pass on a report of the death of Chuck Wilson. I last talked to him in May, but this time, his phone was reported as no longer in service. Eventually, through the Llano County tax records, I was able to find a neighbor who said he died about two months ago which would be last June. She told me that his wife, Teeny, has gone to live with one of their children, which would be in either Pineville, LA, or Seattle, WA. She also said that Chuck had had heart troubles for a long time, which he had not mentioned to me. She, too, knew Chuck as a great story 2010-Issue 4

teller, especially those stories based on his years of lunching with or seeing LBJ every day when he was in the Presidential Detail of the Secret Service. I do hope we can find more about where Teeny is. I was able to talk on the phone with a number of Brother Rats who are leading the quiet life and do not have any special news. So, briefly, here’s about them. Most all have health problems they are living with, as would be expected at our ages, but this shouldn’t be an “organ recital,” so I won’t tell all about those issues. John Cowart was cheerful and has a scooter to get around on – no more driving. Art Wadsworth is reading Gibbon’s 18th century The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire. Sol Rawls recently went to Richmond for a meeting at the Commonwealth Club, and he reports that son Waite is about to break ground for the Museum of the Confederacy satellite at Appomattox. Jim Cheek is not mobile but spends time in his chair each day, says he gets good care and reads a lot. Frazier and Jinny Baldwin are moving to the Methodist Country House in Wilmington near Greenville about the middle of August. Earl Brown has a golf cart in which to tool around Carolina Meadows and is waiting

for his sport, basketball, to resume on TV. Doug Cook has his usual insatiable curiosity about the balmy weather in Hilton Head as compared with his glorious Ithaca weather. He has recovered from a spell after the reunion. Eppy and Doris Powell are still wheeled into the dining room each evening so they can be together, and he is faithful in doing his physical therapy. Ruth and Bud Irwin are fine and are often visited by their daughter, Kathy Conway, who lives in nearby Columbus. John Augustine and June continue to lead an active life. They will be going to a 22nd Bomber Group reunion at Wright Patterson AFB near Dayton in September where they will visit the Air Force Museum. These reunions have been going on since 1950. John tells that the 22nd was his first assignment after flying school at Langley where he went in April of 1941. They flew B-26s for 2-3 years. Their 6-foot, 3-inch grandson reported to football camp at VMI the beginning of August. Dan Flowers keeps up his busy regimen, going to his office daily, meeting with three church groups each week and swimming. He has recently engaged a Pilates trainer. Jeannie walks about two miles most every day. They had been to Wyoming to visit their daughter and son-in-law. Virginia Merchant sent a lovely note about her interest in the Institute and telling that she has decided to join the Society of VMI Family and Friends. She thinks of herself as part of our class family. The message to her in reply was, “You are indeed a part of our class family and always will be.” When I talked to Ben Hardaway in mid-August, he was at his office preparing a PowerPoint talk on the future of fox hunting in America to be delivered soon at the National Sporting Library & Museum in Middleburg, VA. This organization is dedicated to preserving and sharing the literature, art and culture of horse and field sports. Ben says he can walk with his stick but not very far. He will use some time from a shared plane ownership agreement he has to get there. Jack Camp had a good report 33

CLASS NOTES on his health issues when we talked. Although he went as far away as Boston for the diagnostic services of a specialist, he is getting the treatment he needs close by in Wilmington, while maintaining a consulting arrangement with the specialist. So, his check-ups are only a half-hour away. He and Rachel enjoy their club on Figure Eight Island, NC. Rachel likes to cook, and they enjoy eating at home. The enervating nature of his treatments makes it good to be at home. Just now he is interested in the political goings on and in supporting conservative viewpoints. Matt Freidlander was enjoying his summer place at the Highlands in NC and has no particular health problems. His sport was golf which he gave up to accommodate knee replacements a couple of years ago. He and Jackie play a lot of bridge. Bob Barnes and I had a nice talk, and I also chatted with his friend, Michelle Edelmann. He has a friend, Leo, who comes to his residence for daily care, and Bob sounded quite content. Bob was interested in telling me about an amusing photograph of himself on horseback – I think he was facing backwards but couldn’t be sure if that was the direction he described. Evelyn Turner called in June to say that she had recently gotten back from her trip to Turkey and wanted to catch up with things. We gave her a report about the reunion which she had been very sorry to miss. Her daughter, Courtney, was nearing the end of her assignment in Turkey, so Evelyn chose to go there while she could. That precluded her going to the reunion. Courtney had gotten to know lots of people, and so, for Evelyn, it was a oncein-a-lifetime chance for Courtney to show her what it was like in that country. She was gone two weeks and had a great trip. Betty-Jane and I are able to go on as usual. For exercise, she water-walks in the heated pool in our spa three times a week. I try to swim in the outdoor pool there almost every day. My work at the Heritage Library Foundation keeps me very busy and very interested. Just now, I am lecturing whenever I can on the much overlooked story of Hilton Head Island in the Civil War. The invasion of the island in 1861 by the Union Army was the largest amphibious landing in military history up until WWII, with 13,000 troops coming 34

ashore in 500 assault-landing boats. Later, when the Army of the South was fully established, the population in Hilton Head in 1864 got up to about 57,000 people. While this history is mostly forgotten, with the Civil War Sesquicentennial Commemoration coming up in 2011-15, it is now a time to refresh those memories. Don’t forget to keep in touch. It is always a high point to get a phone call from one of you.


details. Remember April 25-26. Ed Hensley’s phone number is 804/200-1342. I got garbage when I tried to call Jack Ayler and Bob Spear. Bob Maling and Charlotte Adler sent notes, so I know they haven’t changed their addresses. Thanks to all for your response to Annual Giving this year. “Always keep your words soft and sweet, just in case you have to eat them.” Keep the Spirit ’41

Richard C. Horne III

Walter Richards

“Drive carefully. It is not only cars that can be recalled by their maker.” The “dog days of summer.” Not much doing here. Maybe I’m lazy. My computer won’t cooperate with me. I’m trying to get all of the addresses and phone numbers straight. I have had some discrepancies. If you haven’t been getting mail from the Institute, please let me know your correct address and phone number. Frank Kirby seems quite adjusted to his location at Harbor’s Edge. His phone number is 757/393-6192. Logistics will keep him from our 70th. Stuart Seaton is working with Carole Green to learn


Charles P. Wilson

The news for ’42 this last quarter was the death of Clyde Hooker. I have written you about that, and his obituary appears in the Taps section of this Alumni Review. My most recent correspondence from a Brother was from George Rhea. His wife, Bunn, sent me an e-mail that George wanted to correspond with some of the Brothers. He is living in Nashville, TN, and apparently has been most (or all) of his life. Following VMI, he served with the 101st Airborne Division, then as an employee of the Tennessee Eastman

Class of 1942: On May 20, 1942, these U.S. Army soldiers, all class of ’42, were traveling from Fort Riley, Kansas, to Fort Monroe, Texas, to train as horse cavalry officers. From left: Harry Siebert, Jack Woodward, Willoughby Williams and Charlie Chewning.


CLASS NOTES Corporation participating in the Manhattan Project. After that, he joined the Medical Services Division of the Tennessee Health Department until retirement. For several years, he had been confined to a rehab center in Nashville for diabetics with limited use of his legs. Bunn says his attitude is great, as long as he can watch Southeast Conference football, Vanderbilt basketball and the 1943 Tennessee Titans pro-football. His address is: Bethany Health and Rehab Center, 411 Ocala Drive, Nashville, TN 37211 and telephone 615/312-0481. On New Year’s Day, he will be 90! Also had a letter from Harry Siebert last week. He and Jody seem to be in top shape and traveling a bit. He is at his Mars Hill North Carolina home – 28754. Street address is 481 Overlook Road. He gave me a bit of history which he thinks is correct but not certified. He thinks he is the last of all the horse cavalry officers that VMI produced. Here’s how it goes … Siebert, Clark and Satterfield were the only three who finished the Cavalry School in August 1942. They were assigned to a horse outfit, the 1st Cavalry, Fort Bliss, Texas. The outfit had 16,000 men and 13,000 horses assigned to it. In March 1943, they were dismounted and the horses sent to Australia. The people were put into a “motorized infantry division.” Since Clark and Satterfield are deceased, Siebert is the last “horse soldier” that VMI produced. And he just turned 90!


Jeffrey G. Smith

As I begin to write, the temperature is once again in the high 90s, with stifling humidity, for the umpteenth time this summer. We are deep in the Dog Days of midAugust. Paraphrasing one of the songs of our youth, “We’ve got it bad, and that ain’t good.” If I had my ’druthers, I’d be lolling by the pool rather than pecking away with one and a half fingers at a computer – but very mindful of the blessings of air conditioning. 2010-Issue 4

Speaking of the heat, within a very few days the new Rat class, 500 strong, will report for matriculation. Two things strike me: 1) The number of 500 new cadets approaches the 720 in the entire Corps when we were at VMI. 2) It was warm and humid when we entered as Rats in early September 1939, but this year’s Rats will endure much worse heat indices than we. Fortunately, today’s uniforms, which are issued immediately to entering Rats, are far better suited to the heat (not to speak of smarter appearance) than our Rat pants and gray flannel shirts worn unwashed for many days. I doubt I’ll ever forget the ripe odors of those garments, crusted, as most were, with the residues of sweat. Message of the Day: It’s great to be a surviving member of the class of ’43! As for just how many survivors we number, I’ve had a challenge or two. My previous class notes stated there were 44; actually, the correct number was 48. I’d relied on the Alumni Office listings which, I later realized, failed to include Bob Reeves, Jim Dischinger, Jim Demmler (who has severe Alzheimer’s) and John H. Bader (presumably alive; exact whereabouts unknown). At their own or family request, all four had been removed from one or another of VMI’s various mailing lists – including the Alumni Office’s “official” roster. Nevertheless, they are our Brother Rats, very much so. Our survivors, as I write, total 45. You can take that number to the bank, I hope. I’m sorry to report three deaths of Brother Rats: Robert L. Smith of Englewood, OH, on 27 April 2010; Daniel M. Thornton Jr. of Virginia Beach on 9 May 2010; and John W. (Sonny) Litton of Norton (southwest) VA at 9:30 p.m., 1 August 2010. I wasn’t notified of the first two until after I submitted my class notes of 15 May 2010. I received a brief note from Bob Smith’s son, Doug, informing me of his father’s death and adding, very importantly, that his father “loved VMI and what it stands for!” (Editor’s Note: Obituaries for Mr. Litton and Mr. Thornton are in the Taps section of this Review.) Dan Thornton was 89 and had been in declining health for some time. He’d served on the Norfolk City Council 196670, as well on the Virginia Port Authority. He was a very close friend as a cadet, but

the last extended conversation I had with him was in late 1945, when we broke bread with USMC Maj. Gen. (later GEN.) Lemuel Shepherd, class of 1917, in Tsingtao, China. Dan was General Shepherd’s aide-de-camp. Sonny Litton was another close friend as a cadet, as well as a fellow civil engineer and member of Company C. Sonny suffered a stroke or heart attack in early 2008 or late 2007, the lingering effects of which kept him from our 65th Reunion in April 2008. Sadly, his condition and memory slowly deteriorated, making it necessary in recent months for Georgia Lee to move him to a local nursing home. Georgia Lee told me 4 August (the day of his funeral) that despite his memory loss, his face never failed to light up when VMI was mentioned. The Institute was his great love. Sonny was buried on 5 August with military honors. Frank Williams called to tell of Sonny’s passing. Sonny, Frank and Brian Bowen were commissioned in the Corps of Engineers at Fort Belvoir and served throughout World War II in the same combat engineer battalion in Texas, North Africa, and eventually France and Germany. They had more than their share of combat. All were wounded at one time or another. And their experiences created a special bond for all three. Some very welcome news: In my last report, I described the relatively quick onset of intestinal/stomach ailments that caused Billy Bell to cancel his plans to attend the mini. Two weeks of tests cleared him of any cancer. He had a benign (not sure that Billy would agree it was “benign”) gastric upset which was responding favorably to a careful diet. His back and legs are not what they once were, and he’s “wearing out” his walker. He continues to enjoy his music and was in good spirits when we spoke. Betty Brook is the acknowledged bridge expert at Falcon’s Landing (their retirement home in Leesburg) and shares her expertise by giving lessons there. And now, the news for which you all have been waiting: The Mini Reunion of 18-19 May 2010, in the Mount Vernon area of Virginia: In a nutshell, it was an extremely pleasant and enjoyable occasion. ’Twas a shame that age, infirmities and unforeseen circumstances prevented 35

CLASS NOTES Bruce Suter was my indispensable, strong, same time as our 65th. Accordingly, it was others from attending. Attendees included right arm. The Catletts were on their way encouraging to learn from the most recent eight Brother Rats, five wives, two class (after the mini) to New York City to visit a Alumni Review that eight members of the widows and four related guests. Grand new grandchild. Congratulations. Dick, trim class of 1940 attended their 70th Reunion. total of 19, all of whom got along beautiand slim, keeps in shape with his golf. Frank They were led into the Barracks following fully. As planned, all (except Jane and me) Williams maintains an active role in his fam- the parade honoring the alumni by Walt stayed at the just-opened Hampton Inn, 10 ily timber business – and absolutely refuses Edens ’40, First Captain and one of my minutes from The Mt. Vernon Grounds & to let his mobility problems affect either Army comrades. With the aid of his son, Gardens & Museum -- and the Potomac mind or spirit. Johnny Van Landingham, Walt climbed atop the sentry box to lead River. Thirteen minutes from our home. erect and fit as always, exercises and keeps a an Old Yell for his class. It was the Army’s The weather cooperated, and Jane and I hand in his family business. John Halsey is a great loss when Walt was not promoted to had the pleasure of hosting cocktails and dedicated tennis player. Gerry Asch remains general officer. dinner at our home on the evening of 18 eternally tanned and debonair. Brian Bowen May. The next day, most took advantage Happy to report that George Snead said demonstrated the truly pleasant and efficient he was “much better” since his scare of of the proximity of George Washington’s way to travel was hopping the train, cane and heart failure. Kitty said he “seems to be home and the recently enlarged exhibits all, from and to Lynchburg. and museum. However, to take it all in doing fine” and equally important, she is, Our next class occasion will be the 70th too. George has resumed his leadership – or even get a good sample – requires a Reunion at VMI in April 2013. We’ll be in of the singing group of the residents of bit of walking, which at our age and stage our 90s, God willing. I’d say that all those their retirement home. And he continues can be challenging for some. Others opted who attended the mini seemed in good his PT regimen, despite bad knees, one in for the sights in our nation’s capital. No enough shape to attend the one in Lexingparticular. Has a pending appointment with one seemed at a loss for amusement or ton. And I’d hope and pray others could an orthopedic doctor. Lots of us have been diversion. there, done that. On the night of the 19th, a small bus took join in. I recall only too well that only The very good news on Bill Johann is all for the 18-minute trip to the Potomac three members of the class of 1939 were River and our water view restaurant, Cedar able to make their 70th which occurred the that a recent cataract operation on his one good eye restored his vision Knoll, for another enjoyable after years of near blindness and relaxing evening. Cameras caused by macular degeneraseemed to be everywhere. Frank tion. Not 20/20 uncorrected but Williams’ attractive granddaughnevertheless, “pretty good,” as ter (who attended the mini with Bill described it. He’s conher father, Frank Jr.) is a profestemplating getting glasses to sional photographer, among other improve further. Meanwhile, talents. Copies of her photos he continues to appreciate – and those of Bruce Suter – St. Mary’s Wood. “Big, nice were later sent to all attendees. apartment; nice folks; good Elsewhere on these pages are food.” He “feels good, mind is two of the results, displaying in true color the wrinkles, warts Class of 1943: Above: On May 19, 2010, Brother Rats, clear,” despite (he said) a little and all that go with our current wives, class widows and guests attended a mini reunion short-term memory loss, and in Mount Vernon, Virginia. Below: Brother Rats attending he’s frequently visited by his territory. So, who attended? Brother Rats the mini were, from left, seated, John Halsey, Frank Wil- son and daughter. His sights are liams, Brian Bowen and John Van Landingham. Standing: set on attending the big 70th. and wives: Gerry & Anne Asch, Bruce Suter, Jeff Smith, Dick Catlett and Gerry Asch. Bill, who turned 90 in April, is Brian Bowen, Dick & Barbara showing the way! Catlett, John Halsey, Jeff & Another Brother Rat leading Jane Smith, Bruce & Joan Suter, the way is (retired) Judge Don Frank Williams, and Johnny & Foster with whom I had a long Shirley Van Landingham. Class chat on 27 May. Don will reach Widows: Betty Haskins and 90 on Christmas Eve this year. Maxine Mahone. Guests: Frank With good reason, he expects Williams Jr and his daughter; many more years. After all, Maxine’s daughter, Sharon Meyhis father lived till age 101 ers, and Maxine’s sister, Delores and served under Brig. Gen. Miller. Pershing in the excursion into All our Brothers looked great, Mexico. Don’s brother, Robert, with minds active and interests you might recall, graduated keen. Through the entire mini, 36


CLASS NOTES from VMI in 1941, was shot down, became a POW and died 10 years ago. Don’s dad sent him to two military prep schools and then to VMI, where he stayed a year before deciding that enough was enough and enrolled in flying school. That led eventually to the Army Air Forces, flying C47s. Don enjoys good health, living in California – and highly important – plans to attend our 70th. I had a pleasant telephone chat in 4 August with Gordon Smith at his Illinois home, interrupting him – literally. He said he was writing a letter to me (which I received two days later). He had encouraging news regarding recovery from effects of the stroke he suffered while in Florida this past December. A good athlete, he knows the value of physical therapy – and he works on it constantly. The hoarseness of his voice has gone completely. Feeling is coming back to his right hand and side. He can walk, with a cane, 1,000 yards – and hopes soon to make it a mile. Gordon says that he needs lessons from Frank Williams on how to use the cane, especially tips to keep track of it. So far, he’s left it in grocery carts four times. He uses weights, does all the right things, except he seems to be defying accident risk by riding his power lawn mower. Over the phone, he was his usual cheery, upbeat self. That did a lot to make my day. Bill Hallett (Richmond, VA) class agent for 1947, called me recently to provide an update on Emma Gray Emory, Bill Emory’s widow. In earlier class notes, I had stated that she had been removed from the mailing and solicitation lists, which caused me concern about her well being. Bill (Hallett) assured me that she is just fine. Bill (Emory) died in 1991, and about five years ago, Emma Gray married a Richmond physician. She is quite happy, and it’s only logical the time had come to cut some VMI links. Emma Gray and her husband are good friends of the Halletts – and we wish them all our very best. On the evening of 3 Aug., Frank and Indie Bain Bilisoly and Vince and Betty Thomas left their Norfolk waterfront retirement residence to dine at the country club. At some point during dinner, Frank passed out and had to be returned to the assisted living wing of their residence by ambulance. He soon recovered –and is 2010-Issue 4

fine, walker and all. Diagnosis: sudden drop in blood pressure. The next morning, Vince was exercising in the residence swim pool. As he climbed a pool ladder to exit, the attendant responsible for tending him neglected to steady him. Vince fell backwards and ended up with a fractured hip. Off to the hospital, where, on 5 Aug., he was operated on, had a retaining pin in his hip inserted, endured a miserable day before being returned on 7 Aug. to the 2nd floor nursing wing of the Thomases’ retirement residence. Vince has been ordered to put no weight on his leg for eight weeks. It’s been taxing on Betty, needless to say. She’s held up remarkably well – and is preparing to have a hip replaced on 17 Sept. Col. Pat Webb, VMI’s head of Annual and Reunion Giving, recently sent us class agents our “Score Cards” for each class and some impressive numbers on contributions for VMI’s 2010 Fiscal Year (1 July 2009-30 June 2010). The VMI Foundation received $2,555,091; the Keydet Club, $1,740, 353; and the Athletic Operating Fund (I don’t know the source of that money), $1,633,093. “There were 4,490 graduate alumni who made a gift” for an overall 34% participation rate. And what about our class? Well, class of 1943 members and Class Widows donated $197, 975. That was the next-to-best amount from 13 classes – 1940 through 1949C – with the class of 1942 tops at $208,367. The class of 1963 gave a whopping $658, 941! As usual, our major portion, by far, came from Bill Gottwald whose generosity to VMI and our class is legendary. We had other very generous contributors, notably Bob Reveley. We had 14 Institute Society level donors (at least $1,500) of whom four were Class Widows (Nita Clark, Janet Dennis, Betty Haskins and Virginia Wyatt). But the rate of giving was only 50% from our Brother Rats, ranking us number 10 of 13. My considerable years in the Orient ingrained in me that being number 10 at anything is to be the very worst – in spades. Voices from the Past Department: On 30 June, I received a note from Paul Stagg, class of 1948A, Bon Air, VA, enclosing an attractively bound (gray embossed hard-cover, 5”x7”) notebook calendar

of a type that were sold annually by the Second Class Finance Committees of our cadet years. The one Paul sent me, titled in gold letters “The Keydet,” was for 1942. It was published and sold by our class committee, of which I was president in 1941-42. The calendars were best sellers to members of the 1942 class as gifts for their Ring Figure dates. Paul’s daughter found the calendar he sent me at a flea market. (Paul’s brother was Willie Stagg, class of 1944.) I felt as if I were intruding when I read the numerous brief, neatly written entries, but they were of things long past. Although many were mundane, others were wholesomely romantic and sweetly nostalgic. I deduced that the calendar sent me had been given by (Robert) Tyler Bland ’42 (Company B) of West Point, VA, to his Ring Figure date and (one would guess) his future wife. Tyler Bland, no longer living, became an infantry major in WWII and was awarded the Silver Star, two Bronze Star medals and the Purple Heart. In civilian life, he was President of Tyler Bland, Inc. I intend to look into the calendar/diary with the Alumni Office and the VMI Archives. At the start of these notes, I spoke of how it’s great to be alive. Reflect upon the words of one unknown who is very much alive and ready to count his greatest blessing – “I’ve had two by-pass surgeries, a hip replacement, new knees, and fought off cancer and diabetes. I’m half blind, can’t hear anything quieter than a jet engine, take 40 different medications that make me dizzy, winded and subject to blackouts. I’ve had bouts of dementia, have poor circulation, and can hardly feel my hands and feet anymore. I can’t remember if I’m 88 or 92 and have lost all my friends, but thank God, I still have my driver’s license.” I dislike to close with a scold which I fear many will simply shrug off. “It seems to me I’ve heard that song before, It’s from an old familiar score, that melody … ” I enjoy passing along news of interest. More than that, I consider it a duty. But dear readers, I would very much appreciate your sending me more information – on your initiative – without my prodding or pleading. Bye-bye. 37



Robert P. Jones Jr.

Having a new computer that speaks only in a language completely foreign to me makes me start early on these notes as I don’t know how long it will take to type them. I had a very nice letter from Betty Caldwell thanking the class for the flowers sent in George’s memory. She said the basket of white oriental lilies, red roses, deep pink carnations and yellow daisies was perfectly lovely. She asked that I express her deepest gratitude and affection to the class of 1944. The thoughts and flowers were greatly appreciated at that sad time in her life. Bob and Hazel Smothers had to cancel their May trip to England and Spain that I wrote about in my May notes. Bob’s son, David, died in early May from pancreatic cancer at age 58; as Bob wrote, “way too young.” On the happier side he has just finished another book. This one is about his parents. Bob has become quite an author, and his books are certainly leaving a great record of his family’s history for the education of future Smothers generations. A note from Ike Eikelberg let me know that he and Chrys had recently had dinner with Harry and Nancy Ratrie. Harry had hurt his right ankle on the golf course and had his foot in a fancy medical support. Even then, Ike wrote, “Harry still moves a bit better than he does.” Ike also mentioned that he agrees with the comments I made in my June Annual Giving letter stating my belief that VMI is continually producing young men and women graduates prepared to handle leadership positions in all fields. I firmly believe they are equal to any and better than most. I received a great gift from Mabbot Warren; Joe’s VMI blazer buttons. They are now on my blue blazer and have me waiting harder than ever for the return of cool weather. In her accompanying note she wrote, “Life goes on and we remember.’ I thought this was a very sincere and touching comment. Mabbot reports she is active in her church with a myriad of friends. She 38

also says children and grandchildren, all lovable and caring, are making her life as a widow very bearable. A drive to Richmond to visit her many friends there raised her confidence level to drive and visit old friends. My conversations with her have been lighthearted, and I feel that is the sign of a girl once again becoming happy with life. In June I had a letter and a couple of phone calls from Ezra Trice. He reported the Gulf oil spill had resulted in no serious damage yet in his area or a Point Clear where he has a summer home. He said Lucy was fine and they spend most afternoons sitting on her front porch sipping a little scotch watching a variety of birds at her feeder and pelicans in the bay. They also have five raccoons coming out at dusk and looking for a handout. Ezra mentioned they hoped he could handle his annual trip to Lexington in July and meet the Sherrards there in their annual get together with the Lexingtonians. Over three or four weeks of phone calls that visit, which Faye and I planned to try to attend, turned into a three-day unplanned mini reunion. Faye and I met Ezra, Lucy and the Sherrards, in Lexington Sunday July 18th. By then the Irbys and the Helmens were on board along with Jim Doss, Scottie Haley, Ruth and Bill Ellinghaus and Betty Bond Nichols. We had a couple of very social evening cocktail sessions followed by great dinners at a couple of good local restaurants. The cocktail session on Monday evening was held at the home of Bill and Ruth Ellinghaus. As always Ruth’s hospitality was outstanding. During each day folks visited different places in town and at the Institute. Among them were the impressive Hall of Valor in the new Marshall Hall, the bookstore and café for cadets and visitors on the west end of the newest addition to Barracks and the VMI Museum. Its expansion in JM Hall is ongoing with most areas opened to the public by the end of the year. We all paused for that afternoon nap which seems to be a daily part of all our lives these days. Our only planning had been Ezra making the hotel reservations for those who needed them. From there we just let things happen and we regrouped at meal time and after our naps. It was a really

great social occasion. All of us departed for home at various times with Ezra, Lucy and the Sherrards being the last to leave on Wednesday morning the 21st. We all hoped it wasn’t the last time something like this happened. While in Lexington Faye and I had checked out the revisions just recently completed to our class memorial plaque in the Memorial Garden in front of Cocke Hall. I think I wrote in my class notes several years ago of the needed changes to that plaque. I wrote that Hugh Dischinger ’45 (their class agent at that time), Gabe Horne ’42 (their class agent) and I had agreed that Frank Hamilton ’45 wanted to be a member of the class of ’45 even though he had matriculated with our class but “washed back” to ’45 after his Rat year with us. Cecil Coburn who had matriculated with the Class of 1942, wished to be considered a member of our class. Cecil and Frank were both killed during WW II. To make the plaque historically correct and match other Institute memorials Frank Hamilton’s name was removed from our plaque and Cecil Coburn’s was put in its place. The renovation was an excellent job and the refinishing makes the plaque really outstanding. Ezra has since called me to say how much he and Lucy had enjoyed the extended weekend. They and the Sherrards had visited The Greenbrier Hotel for a fine lunch the Tuesday we left for home. They tried to visit the new casino added to that hotel but couldn’t. The folks there told them they had to be registered guests of the hotel to go in. A call from Dick Meade let me know he had “graduated” from a cane to a walker to reduce the chances of a fall. So far that is working. Dick had talked to Bruce Bowden who is ‘hanging in there’ and did not seem to be I the least dispirited. Bruce called me a day or two later and I got the same impression. When Hap and Margaret Irby were in Lexington with us, Hap mentioned that one of his insurance peddling friends told him that half of all folks who are 87 will cash in their chips before they reach 91. I like hap’s comment on that. “Maybe so, but still it has been a great ride.” I had a call from Cynthia Cabaniss expressing her fears for her son Chris, a VMI ALUMNI REVIEW

CLASS NOTES captain in a Marine Corps artillery unit. He is leaving in October for a seven-month tour in Afghanistan. I think this will be his second tour over there and we can all share her hope that it’s a safe one. She is still living in her home and her daughter is a great help in her life which is still centered around her children and grandchildren. Bob Watt called me after he got hold of the summer edition of a magazine published by The Civil War Preservation Trust. He said that issue had a lot of detailed information on VMI’s activities during the Civil War. I f you are interested ask for it at your local library. Bob reports he is still making his weekly visits to the golf course and the tennis court. That’s all for now. Take care of yourselves wherever you are. God bless all of you and God bless America and VMI.


Richard A. Matheis

Reflecting on John Williams’ last Class Notes in the Alumni Review (which I just read), let me set the record straight. I was not “railroaded” into the position of class agent – I was “shanghaied!” It was a total act of disloyalty to me perpetrated by my supposed friends BR Williams, Gant and Walker. When they realized I was not attending the luncheon in Crozet Hall on April 20, they decided to call for our business meeting immediately, rather than at breakfast the following and last day. It may have been as John reported – but it would not have been had I been there. They appeared at the door of my hotel room after lunch. One look at their faces told me instinctively what must have occurred. They had that look of satisfaction indicating they had been up to no good. I immediately said, “No!” I then stated, in the words of former U.S. President William Harding, “If nominated, I will not run. If elected, I will not serve.” They were not impressed with my knowledge of history but continued the pursuit of their prey. I finally relented but only with one caveat – Williams had to assist me with the minor tasks, particularly class agent meetings. He agreed. 2010-Issue 4

All of the above is said with tongue in cheek. I must add that, so far, the responsibilities have been time consuming but very enjoyable. I therefore thank you all for the opportunity to serve. Now, down to business. As of today, Aug. 18, 2010, we are 55 in number. This includes a phone call John Williams just received from Lin Maggard. Ollie left us this past Palm Sunday, March 28th. Our regrets are extended to Lin, and I hope she will remain close to us. (Editor’s Note: Mr. Maggard’s obituary appears in the Taps section of this Review.) After a bit of research, I accumulated 30 e-mail addresses and sent a note to all. I then attempted to reach the other 25 BRs by phone. I had limited success. However, I did make contact with enough Brother Rats that I am running the risk of missing some of my notes. Please forgive, if true, what is even more important – because of this being my first experience with the deadline for submitting this kind of material, I had insufficient time to contact our Sisters. I promise to do better next issue. Had a nice talk with Hugh Dischinger. He doesn’t enjoy talking much about himself, but I did manage to squeeze out of him that he has a family reunion coming up with his children shortly. This includes Charlie, who lives in Huntsville, AL, and is involved with the design of our next space shuttle; Martha, who is in Richmond doing major work in cancer research; Joe, a talented lawyer in Denver; and Amy, way up in British Columbia, working with disabled children. What a talented family! Now, if we can just get Disch away from his computer once in a while. About a month ago, I received an e-mail from Russ Newton up in Jacksonville, FL, in reference to the failure of one of our largest banks in the state – the Bank of Florida. The feds appointed the EverBank of Jacksonville as its successor. It turned out he was one of the founders of that bank and apparently is still active in its management. He suggested if I had any banking needs in Naples to let him know. In jest, I was tempted to say I was desperately in need of big bucks and wanted an uncollateralized loan for $xxx,xxx. I thought better of it, since perhaps my sense of humor might not be on the same frequency after

all these years. I am impressed with his success after all these years – particularly after seeing, while I was recently in my other home base in St. Louis, this magnificent new building with a cloth banner draped over the top – EverBank. I had a chance to talk to good old Charlie Bigger in Baton Rouge. He may be the last of the great travelers in our group. He just returned from one of the islands near the Isle of Capri and the Italian Amalfi coast – one of the most beautiful parts of Europe. No walking canes in that family! I caught Jim Adams at home, also in Louisiana – Shreveport. I told him a true story about a family that moved from the north to Shreveport one winter, many years ago. They had a freak snowstorm one day. The mother took her two young children outside and showed them how to make a snowman. They went inside to eat lunch. The children couldn’t wait to revisit their snowman. After lunch, they ran out to their front yard, only to come running back inside, crying. Someone had STOLEN their snowman! Jim told me more about his work these days, in addition to that previously reported by John Williams. His institute, which trains real estate agents-to-be, keeps him busy teaching about 16 hours a week. Closer to home base, we have Nate Adams who is all wrapped up with the Lexington baseball entry in the Shenandoah Valley League. During the season, they have been housing players from other parts of the Southeast U.S. What great guys. Hmm – might be a possible place to stay at our 70th. A little further south, we have Jack Burnett in Roanoke. He sadly reported he was not able to physically go to the reunion this year. He likened himself to the “Humpback of Notre Dame.” My heart went out to him. I also spoke to Charles McKay’s wife, Greg, in Huntington, WV. She stated “all is well” in the McKay household, but Charles was not available for comment. I received a nice response to my first e-mail from Kay Gantt. Unfortunately, it had one sad note – their daughter, Sherri, died of melanoma on June 23rd. Our heartfelt sympathy goes out to Kay and Joe. On a more pleasant note, she reports that Joe takes long walks daily and is a volunteer 39

CLASS NOTES worker at Virginia Baptist Hospital. He fixes wheelchairs. In the future you know where to send any wheelchair you own in need of repair. Keep those wheels rolling, Joe. By the way, to those who attended the reunion, Joe is missing two copies of the Bomb that were on display in the Hospitality Room. If you have any information regarding them, please call or write Joe. And now a little information from Jim Lewter in Chase City, VA. It is expansive enough that I decided to give it to you in its entirety: “Don’t have much to report except that Bob Allen called to thank me for the Mardi Gras DVD sent to him. He didn’t remember seeing it before. I looked for a VHS tape or DVD of the movie for years, and last Christmas, my grandson found one. My son-in-law knows how to make copies, and I have sent it to anyone who wants a copy. I was a charter member of the band in 1947 and living in New Orleans when they came to the Mardi Gras. I think it has more great scenes of VMI than any other movie. It is still shown on Turner Classic Movies. Take care, Jim Lewter.” And here is another message in its entirety. This is from Doug Lindsey in Alexandria, VA: “Since our little reunion in Lexington, Sara and I have checked into a retirement home, Goodwin House, Alexandria. Not like Westminster-Canterbury in Richmond. Very few VMI connections here. New address is 4800 Filmore Ave., Apt. 259, Alexandria, VA 22311. (Phone and e-mail unchanged.) In order to keep the brain from retiring also, I have renewed my IRS Enrolled Agent license, completed 27 hours CPE (including three hours in ethics) and plan hopefully to complete 27th year with H & M Block Premium Service in 2011. Look forward to five more years of great class notes. Doug Lindsey.” Still going, Bob Allen is planning to attend the reunion of his WWII 138th and 1255th Engineer Battalions in Missouri during October. Speaking of Bob, he continues to garner impressive honors. This time, it is the University of Oklahoma. He is to attend a banquet in his honor on Nov. 12th at which time he will receive a Distinguished Service Award … Congratulations, Bob. I received an e-mail from Bruce Pates 40

’70 telling me his mom, Jean, recently survived a four-hour hip replacement and two months rehab. She is now doing well and walking with vigor. Nice to hear pleasant news these days. Another e-mail was received several days later from Betty Adair’s daughter, Temple Glenn, telling us her mom passed away on March 6th of this year. Sorry to have to relay info of this nature. Spoke to Jim Morgan last week. As previously reported, his wife, Jean, fell out of her wheelchair and broke her foot and thus was unable to join the reunion. Jim indicates the foot is fully healed, and she is now chasing him all over the house. Go get him, Jean. I had a great chat with Bob Pettigrew way out in Casper, WY. His life has been mighty interesting. Born in the West Indies, family moved to a farm in Virginia, attended VMI, then on to the V12 Program at Cornell, tour of duty in Korea, then a career as a mining engineer in the far west. He even entered the political scene and at one point, was the mayor of Casper. What a guy! Lastly, a little bit of info on BR George Stenhouse, or should I say, Rev. George Stenhouse? He is now a retired clergyman but sounds VERY energetic. The career must have been very easy on him. Unfortunately, his wife, Sylvia, fell and broke her femur but is fast recovering. That’s it for our BRs. And now for a favorite subject of mine – mini reunions. Please give this topic some serious thought. We will have our 70th Reunion and hopefully, all 55 of us will be available to attend. I’m already working on preliminaries for that. In the meantime, we should be planning on how we can comfortably gather together as we did with our mini reunions in the past. Remember how much fun we had in Albany, GA, Richmond, Charleston (that was the best, hosted by the Myers) and, of course, Naples, FL? Incidentally, while at the reunion this year, Jo Pittman told me she had a very nice file of that event which I requested she send me – she did. What a keepsake that is for Sandra and me. Thank you, Jo. For mini reunion starters: How about a short cruise out of New Orleans, Miami, Ft. Lauderdale, Jacksonville or Norfolk?

Minimum walking and lots of time to socialize, drink and eat. Give me your thoughts when you can. My goal is one a year, as we did in the past. We still need volunteers to host a potential of three or four minis. From my personal experience, I can tell you it can be very gratifying. Try it – you’ll love it! Late Breaking News: I just received a summary of the contributions to the VMI Annual Giving Campaign. Of the 13 classes between 1940 and 1950, our class’s total was exceeded by only ’42 and ’43 – thanks to a very generous gift by our very own Bev Myers. (I will always remember her playing the role of tour guide at the Charleston mini, giving us the history of that magnificent city.) In the words of our great oracle, John Williams, “God bless VMI and the class of ’45.”


William A. Eliason

It has long been a perplexity to me that we seem to not bother to tell people how much we like or love them until it’s too late for them hear it. I sincerely hope that this is not the case with our Judge Nottingham to whom, with all brotherly love, these notes are humbly dedicated. As I related in my August letter, Judge has been diagnosed with melanoma cancer which has spread through many of his vital organs. And at this writing, he was hanging on to life with his indomitable VMI spirit and advised me that Judge Jr. was standing by to drive him to Lexington for our 65th if he was still here in April. When I talked to him, I tried to let him know how much he was loved by the entire class and respected by the Institute for his loyal and generous support through the years. As I’m sure most of you know, Judge’s father, son and grandson were all VMI. This is a VMI family for the ages. If he’s still with us, please let him know that you and we care. If he is not, I know that if there is a hereafter, it will be a much better and happier place than ever because Judge is there. One of the sad parts about this job of VMI ALUMNI REVIEW

CLASS NOTES class agent is that we don’t know that we are losing a beloved Brother Rat, because we are never told that he is in trouble until he is gone One of the joyous parts of being class agent is that I have come to know and love Brother Rats as alumni when I only vaguely remember them as cadets. So it was with Bill Rance. Bill was one of our most active and vocal members. He went off to war, came back commissioned in the Marine Corps and graduated VMI with academic stars on his collar and sleeves. He then earned his juris doctorate at Ohio State and became one of Ohio’s top corporate lawyers. His generosity and support of both of his schools were as unwavering as his cold-eyed glare when he would, occasionally, get upset with something or somebody. His family put together a delightful synopsis of his life as sort of a program for his memorial gettogether. I’ll bring it to the reunion for you to enjoy. I inferred, I hope correctly, that it was a celebration of Bill’s life – he always loved a party! As to the reunion next year, it looks like we will have enough to make it worthwhile. As I go though the responses, I’ll note who can make it and who can’t. Those who did not respond are still question marks that I’d sure like to hear from.

There are 70 of us, and I had 21 responses – and the letter was postage-paid both ways! The survey was almost unanimous that these notes should continue, and as long as you keep responding, they will. Tommy Layman wants the notes to continue, but his only contribution was that my “job” is to call him for news. Tom should have practiced what he preaches; I have no recollection of his ever having called me. But, oh well, Tom is Tom. He ain’t never gonna change. By the way, Tom, this is not a job; jobs get paid. We love ya’ anyway. It’s an honor to serve the class, but it is a PITA when you’ve got a “job” and no work. Many thanks to all who sent notes. Here they are in no special order. Norval Marr, the enthusiastic supporter of Sarah Pallin, says, “You betcha,” he and Ardith are still kicking but perhaps not so high as they once did, and they’ll be at the reunion. Unfortunately, hand and wrist arthritis has caused him to cancel his traditional silver salmon trip to Alaska. He doesn’t think that he can handle a 25pounder on a fly rod. He’s still going to test his hand on the Snake River in Idaho, however, and then on to Montana. Norval certifies that he will wear his VMI tartan kilt to the reunion.

Class of 1946: John Naill drew this cartoon. Class Agent Bill Eliason wrote, Naill “thought the younger classes might be amused with his evaluation (circa 1943) of our next door academic neighbors. We called them ‘Minks’ because they sneaked around on hop nights, late-dating our gals.”

2010-Issue 4

Babs and Mort Mumma took a quick trip to San Diego for the promotion to O-6 ceremony (that’s a bird colonel for the few civilians among us) of their youngest son, James Mumma’88, USMC Reserve. In May, they visited Istanbul for two weeks and then dallied through the islands of the Aegean and Adriatic Seas on a Regent Seven Seas cruise, winding up with a shore trip to Venice. Then, in August, to beat the heat, they headed off to the mountains of northern Arizona and followed it with another visit to San Diego. Apparently this retired fighter pilot and his Babs are not happy unless they are on the water. Can’t blame ’em. Next May, they are off on a West Coast cruise to Canada and Alaska. Mort was kind enough to clear the reunion dates for a brief dry land visit. Pete Whittemore reports from “The Beach” that there’s not much “exciting” going on. He and Jane are spending too much time with doctors and their retinue. (Tell me about it!) Jane has post-polio syndrome and hydrocephalus affecting her body, and she’s tired all the time. They have not travelled as they would like to, but they will try to make the reunion. My old (and I mean old) roommate, Beth and Pat Echols, took me to task for not sharing the story of their discovery of his long lost cousin which they sent me last year. Apparently, they didn’t bother to read my notes in the 2010-Issue 2 Review. Hope they kept their copy. Pat had the thrill of walking his eldest daughter, Carter, down the isle to wed a Baptist minister. She has been a very active full time layperson in the Episcopal Church for many years. This got Pat to impart the knowledge to me that he had done likewise. Seems Beth is a retired Baptist minister, also. Pat always was “well-churched,” and he still sings in the choir. I well remember that the only time I was happy with my bad hearing was my year rooming with him. Frank Dresser wasn’t so fortunate. Beth and Pat plan to grace the 65th. My letter to Bud Kessing was answered by his wife, Candy, and I quote it here in its entirety: “Oliver O. Kessing Jr. is at home in Fort Myers (FL) with ‘dementia’ and is under hospice care. Candy K.” Jule Spach writes, “Just had a wonderful experience. I noticed that the [agent] of the class of ’41 (sic) is Jeffrey Smith 41

CLASS NOTES ’43. I dyked for a Jeffrey Smith 67 years ago. I wrote and asked him if he was that Smith. Got an answer. It was. Now a lieutenant general, distinguished history, former commandant at VMI. We exchanged pictures. Time does make a difference.” Bill Watson: “Like so many at our age category [who find] the need to downsize, we are caught up in the poor real estate market. In retrospect, moving from Florida via Virginia to Scranton may not have been the best move. When winter comes, we miss Florida.” Bill, you made the right choice in leaving Florida for Virginia; your problem was going back to the coal country. Real estate is just fine in Williamsburg. Erline and Ted Holt attended the annual VMI party on the Ocean Pier in Norfolk in June, and Ted was disappointed in not seeing the Bill Eliasons and the Web Chandlers there, as he was the only ’46 in attendance. Sorry we missed you, Ted, but both Web and I have been somewhat limited in our travels. Nancy Chandler had both of her knees replaced last year, and Nancy Carol Eliason is still recovering from mitral valve replacement and other complications. We’ll all join you next year in April at the reunion. John Naill advises that he and Sally celebrated their 15th anniversary on the beach in Jamaica. He says that things are going well for them, although “one would expect ‘one shoe’ to drop any minute.” Hope you enjoy his artwork [see drawing accompanying these notes]! They’re on for the reunion. Received just a note from “hizzonor” Judge Warren Stephens. He doesn’t say, but he is likely still filling in as a circuit court judge down Newport News way. From what I read in the papers, the courts are short of judges and money down there, so I guess he works pro bono. Always great to hear from my very first VMI roommate, Jim Price. You’ll recall that he broke a hip last year on leaving the 19th hole of a golf tournament. Despite that injury and the fact that the Krauts shot up both of his legs in WW2, he is back on the links. Say’s he can only walk about four holes or so and then has to ride the rest of the way. He and Midge are moving to Blakehurst, 42

a great retirement community nearby, on 8/31/10. They’ll still spend November to early May in Florida, so will miss the reunion. He ends with the surprising news that “Baltimore is HOT this summer.” (NSBR) Buck Bedinger is in health care at Westminster-Canterbury in Richmond, VA. He suffers from various neurological issues and is confined to wheelchair and bed. His daughter, Martha Bedinger Hart, writes, “While this is a very difficult situation, Dad seems to connect with a piece of artwork of VMI that is hung on the wall over his bed.” Despite his condition, Judge Nottingham took the effort to send me thanks along with telling us that he has set up his hospice with “everything I will need – so far, so good.” When my time comes, I just hope I have the jois de vive of this wonderful guy. He survived WW2, including the slaughter at the Anzio beachhead, and tells us he has no regrets – he’s got every thing done he expected to and more. Amen to that, Brother Rat! Ford and Norma Ford have been travelling to the extent that they can – cruise to Alaska; bus to Newfoundland and other parts of Canada; a week in Vermont and other parts of the U.S. while keeping the house and acreage maintained; and keeping in touch with son Bob and wife Gae, grandchildren and great-grandchildren by telephone. “Thankful that we are able to do so.” Trips are by bus, “Bluebirds” over 50’s. Paul Marks reports that there’s not much change in the lives of Joan or him. They still are blessed with fairly good health and are able to do most things that they want to. Guy Gilleland rings in from Florida: “We’re hanging in at 86 &81, married 57 years, three children, five grands, two great-grands (one 15 yrs.). [Took a] trip to Scandinavia and Baltic countries in Oct. ’09 – 13 cities, nine countries, in 17 days – much too hectic but very interesting, especially Poland, [which is] now fully and beautifully reconstructed after almost total destruction in WWII. Last gasp trip this Aug. to Switzerland (fourth time). This or divorce. Michigan every Christmas and Florida beach every summer. Wearing thin.” (Class agent note:

What’s wearing thin, Guy? Michigan, Florida, beach, bathing suit or butt?) Waldo and Binky Forster are still running two homes, and he can’t get her to downsize. “She still keeps me (?) with her doll house furniture and miniatures. Next week, going to Aztec show and will deliver a doll house to our great-granddaughter in Cincinnati.” Planning on the reunion. Zack Dameron writes that their daughter, Katherine, who worked with J.P. Morgan Chase in London for eight years, returned to New York two years ago and now travels for them to Europe and Asia. Married Jeffrey Jones a year ago. Son Zack is a psychiatrist at UVa. His wife, Becky, is a radiologist – two children. Son Tayloe sells bonds in NY and returns home on weekends. He and wife Suzy have two children – a daughter is a junior at UVa and a son, Tayloe, is a junior at Collegiate School. He told me on the phone that he has joined the caregivers’ club but that Ann is not able to do a whole lot, but still keeps up her bridge. They expect to make the reunion. He wants a repeat of the cover picture of his north end going south through Washington Arch. I finally caught up with Buck Williams. My mail to him has been coming back “unknown at this address” for years. “Just a note to tell you that I never finished Rat year at VMI. Joined the Navy Air Corps and was called out early spring. Later became captain of the Villanova U. football team. Graduated there. Was stationed on Okinawa when Harry dropped the big one.” In 2006, George Coleman got tied up in L.A. traffic and missed his plane to the 60th Reunion. Apparently, the traffic has not improved, so he’s not taking a chance this time. Both he and Shirley are still working. His law practice clients, architects and won’t let him quit in May. Son Dave became a doctor of veterinary pathology. Daughter Heather got her Ph.D. in environmental science. In August, they visited her in Victoria, British Columbia, Canada, and report it to be “a beautiful spot.” It is, indeed. Coming into the harbor, the building of the provincial parliament and the Empress Hotel with lawns make an impressive waterfront landscape. Nearby are the spectacular VMI ALUMNI REVIEW

CLASS NOTES Butchart Gardens which alone are worth the trip. If you go, take the ferry from Anacortes, WA, through the fabulous San Juan Islands, and then return through Port Angeles and the Olympia Mountains. Last night, as I was preparing your remarks for these notes, Nancy Carol asked me if I had a good response. I replied that all of the “regulars” had responded and a few new ones. I also commented that I was disappointed that my old roomie, Phil Reitz, had not been heard from. I assume that Phil, like Radar O’Reilly, has ESP, because as I am writing these notes, low and behold, the phone rings and it is Dr. Phil. As he said before hanging up, we talked clean through the lunch hour, and I am now desperately afraid, having reviewed our families’ respective health conditions, that I will get another doctor’s bill, and I’ve got a plenty. I can report that both Phil and Joanna are holding up well. Joanna perhaps a bit better than Phil, as she regularly out shoots him in golf. For years, the two of them have gone to Venice, FL, on winter vacation, always driving. However, about a year ago, while driving to Buffalo, he found himself growing unusually and uncomfortably tired. Practicing self-diagnosis, he decided to hang up his Michelin’s and stop their motor travels for the duration. Apparently, he was wise enough to seek a second opinion, and he decided that he had no problem driving. Last October, they did a victory lap from Utica to Buffalo to Erie to Venice and back. Very sadly, they lost their daughter in January to metastasized breast cancer. I’m sure you all know how much I empathized with him on that. As Pat Echols said to me when our beloved Leslie had to give up to cancer, “We shouldn’t live long enough to bury our children. On a brighter note, Phil and Joanna attended a family reunion in Bandon, OR, one of my old stomping grounds. They rented a lodge on a high cliff overlooking the Pacific and had a wonderful time. They have a son who lives in the Cascade Mountains of southern Oregon, I guess in the Crater Lake area. Now that Phil has decided he can still drive, they are planning for the reunion. That’s all for now. Keep those cards and letters coming and, above all, you be careful; it’s dangerous out there! 2010-Issue 4


Bill Hallett

Very happy to report that the bugler was not needed during the past quarter. Very good news indeed! After all the flooding in suburbs of Oklahoma City, I checked with Ben McCarley to see if all was well at their Edmond home. Ben said that in spite of the 10 inches of rain no leaks were discovered. Excellent results from Alice’s carpal tunnel surgery. Ben was pleased that his medical specialty had been kids and babies. “They generally always get well; wasn’t at all sure that geriatric medicine would have been so gratifying.” Much happiness at Nags Head, NC, when Sarah Newsom and her extended clan gathered there in June for beach fun and summertime feasting. A Father’s Day call from Jorge Sarmiento telling of the grand time he was having with some of his children and grandchildren. Even though fall is arriving in his part of the world, he still manages to swim most days at his club; he enjoys the heated pool. Jorge and one of his brothers are preparing a bid for an airport construction project. Jorge said there were way too many environmental rules to comply with. Many pages of hard-to-understand rules in fine print; “must have been started in your country!” Jorge pointed out to me that Jack Timmins’ name was misspelled in my May 15th letter. He and Jack had roomed together, and Jack had introduced him to classical music. The Timmins Music Room is still in Preston Library. At mid-year, Lou Hundley decided it was time to change his outlook and improve his vision. Cataract surgery and installation of a multi-focal lens improved both. Now, all is right with his right eye, and the left is working fine. Soon after July 4th, the Lexington Ladies Golf Assn. hosted a pair of tournament events which were conducted using a stroke play format with competition for low gross and low net. Helen Gillespie placed third in the low gross division. She said her golfing has been limited since excessive heat moved into the valley. On May 8th in Richmond’s Hollywood Cemetery, the Stuart-Mosby Historical

Society sponsored a Memorial Service honoring the life of Gen. James Ewell Brown Stuart at his gravesite there. JEB, then age 31, was shot on May 11, 1864, during the Battle of Yellow Tavern and died the following day in Richmond before his wife, Flora, reached his side. She wore the black of mourning for the rest of her life until she died May 10, 1934. Cavedo and Hallett attended that most impressive service. An interesting story and a bit of morerecent history from Bill Haughton our Roswell, GA, correspondent. Recently while shopping at his local Home Depot, he noted the cashier’s name plate which said, “Pooley.” Bill asked if his last name was Hubert and, lo and behold, it was. Pooley Hubert Jr., son of that “kindly” football coach of the dark ages of our Rat year. “In 1946, two of VMI’s best football players, Lynn Chewning and Bill Hawkins (both ’49Bs), were recruited by Navy and were enrolled at the Naval Academy. Navy’s coach also tried, without success, to recruit Bobby Thomson.” According to Junior, Pooley (real name Allison T.S. Hubert of Waynesboro, GA) got so mad he got drunk and started making phone calls. First, he tried to call the president of the U.S. without success; then he called the Navy coach and couldn’t reach him either. Then he called Chauncey Durden, a good friend who was sports editor of the Richmond Times-Dispatch, and pushed him to print the story about the audacity of the Naval Academy stealing football players from VMI. Chauncey refused and told Pooley that he (Chauncey) would get in trouble if the story was printed. According to Pooley Jr., his father was so outraged that he finally resigned as football coach at VMI in 1946. Young Pooley was in high school in Lexington and living at home with his dad, so he was eye/ear witness to those events. Time marched on! Talked with Fred Floyd recently, and he confirmed that the Eastern Shore had not escaped the drought afflicting the rest of the commonwealth. We joked that the air conditioning of today did not exist at our homes when we departed for VMI in 1943; many other changes during those six decades! Fred and his son have nearly 600 acres planted in soy beans and wheat. He admitted that he does little of the work and 43

CLASS NOTES will, on occasion, give a bit of free advice. Fred asked me to extend his greeting and best wishes to all those Bro’ Rats whose memories he still cherishes after all these many years. One of the best of the summer lecture series at the Virginia Historical Society took place on July 22nd when Brig. Gen. John Mountcastle ’65 presented Memories of World War II, complete with slides of and comments about the 1940-45 era. The D-Day landings, merchant ships on the Murmansk run, Doug wading ashore (for the third time), Churchill and Roosevelt at Yalta, the surrender ceremony on the Missouri in Tokyo Bay – all current events of our much-earlier days. Buck Cavedo and your scribe attended and shared the applause offered for the WWII vets in attendance. Three days later, with Buck at the helm, the Surprise set sail for a three-week cruise with some of his family of the Chesapeake Bay and its tributaries. Now hear this. My heartfelt thanks to the 36 Bro’ Rats and six widows who saw the light and made meaningful contributions to support the Institute. Those Bro’ Rats, representing 58% of those on our roster at June 30th, gave $43,019 to help assure that VMI will continue to be heard from. For the 26 Bro’ Rats who did not contribute, I hope you will join in soon – any amount will be greatly appreciated and will do much to increase our donor participation record. The Institute is depending on the old Corps. My report of Jack Trotter’s death reminded Don Doherty that there was more to the story of Jack’s alleged arson of one of the academic buildings; Jack had also suffered a gunshot wound at that time. At the time, Don Vandervoort, PenDell Pittman, Jorge Sarmiento and Jack were roommates. Contrary to Institute regulations, Don had brought his pistol to VMI and kept it in his desk drawer. It was missing on the morning following the academic building fracus. When Don went to the guard room to report his pistol missing, the OC showed Don the weapon found at the scene of the “disturbance” the previous evening. It was Don’s pistol; he received demerits and penalty tours for having a pistol in Barracks, and soon thereafter, Jack was on his way. That seems to be the rest of the story. Don said that he and Anne are well; she plays golf and tennis often, 44

and he claimed to stay busy looking after his 30 acres of weeds. Universal truths. Nothing hurts more than that moment during an argument when you realize that you were wrong. I totally take back all those times I didn’t want to take a nap when I was younger. Bad decisions make good stories. Jim Brice “confessed” that after nearly 18 years following his retirement as a fulltime judge, his part-time service on the bench will end in August, as he finishes his last case. Jim, that bird colonel who “jeeped” me back to my Tokyo quarters following the VMI party at the home of Lt. Gen. Edward Almond ’15, was MacArthur’s PIO; he had visited the punch bowl but could still keep the jeep on the road, I think. Ding Price wrote that he was very proud of all of our Bro’ Rats whose awards are recognized in the VMI Hall of Valor. His own collection of awards include one from Vietnam, four Army Commendation Awards, four Air Medals, a Legion of Merit and a few others. Glad to report that Joan and Mac Davis held the high ground when the Cumberland River flooded parts of Nashville; no damage at their home or his office. Mac’s clarinet playing is on hold until the surgical repair to nerve damage in his left elbow does its job. During one of those end of June 100-degree days while Mac and I were talking, he remembered that there was some snow falling at VMI on May 1, 1944; he was surveying the Parade Ground at the time. Soon thereafter, Mac left VMI, joined the Navy and went to UNC. During his May 16th valedictory address, Cadet Alex Houser said: “VMI had taught us intangible values that are not learned at more traditional colleges such as a true sense of honor, integrity, duty, courage and a never-say-die mentality.” Well said! The school you support does many fine things. Eighty-one percent of the Corps (787 cadets) received some sort of financial assistance from the Foundation during the past academic year. Please keep up your good work. It means a lot to those young people who will, in the near future, be our country’s leaders. We do live in exciting times. Chelsea Clinton got married, Lindsey Lohan got out of jail and the price of pork bellies reached an all-time high.

The Society of American Military Engineers presented Lucius Dabney a certificate recognizing his outstanding commitment to the society by being a loyal member for 60 years. His membership dates from March 1, 1950. If I remember correctly, there was a membership drive about that time at Inchon. Bill Glass called asking for any recent news from Jorge Sarmiento; his two recent e-mail attempts to our Peruvian Prince had bounced. I gave Bill all the contact data I have. Who knows, snail mail is the answer! Bill said he was doing fine and had no news to offer for this edition. Ben McCarley attended a recent meeting of the Oklahoma Chapter of the Alumni Association. Said he was old enough to be the grandfather of most of the other attendees. He shared a somewhat recent oldie some of you may remember. A student in a public speaking class was about to give his first talk and was quite anxious. The teacher put his arm around him and said: “You are nervous, aren’t you?” The student replied: “Oh no! This time of day I always wet my trousers.” Recently, Bill Phillips told me that I may be hoping for too much when, in closing the Notes, I ask that you age gracefully. I always hope for the best for all of us! So, for a bit of a change, and until next time, I leave you with these words borrowed from a country preacher’s closing prayer: “Help the sick, solace the lonely, comfort the bereaved, placate the rippedoff, console the mugged and unwind the uptight … ” and be very good to yourselves. Please take time to write; your Bro’ Rats want to know.


Dale E. Wykoff

While Irene Sadler was reaching to an upper kitchen shelf, she fell and broke both her pelvis and spine. A neighbor heard her cries. She spent two months in the hospital. Now, with the help of a walker, she is able to move about a bit. We all wish her a fast and full recovery! Billy and Betty Bond remain in both good health and spirits. His last trip was to northern New Mexico where the brown VMI ALUMNI REVIEW

CLASS NOTES and rainbow trout fishing was excellent. Mike Calhoun attends all the city council meetings and his long background in local politics makes his opinions much sought after. Don Florence is still living with his daughter, Debra Pianka, who says that he has lost considerable weight and is really looking good. Ed and Peggy Kritzer are doing well, as he continues his fight against Parkinson’s disease. John Trumbo and Dale Wykoff recently visited Ed and enjoyed a good chat with him and Peggy. Bev and Katie Laws are doing well and Bev is now able to walk well enough to take a recent trip to Atlanta. Blake and Cheddy McFeely are enjoying life in California but we frequently talk about how VMI was 65 years ago. He especially enjoyed the days when there were horses and polo. Lots of good things have passed, Blake. Glad that we are still around to remember them! It is always a pleasure to talk with J.Y. O’Neal. Recently, however, the telephone connection has been miserable. Could it be that he needs to dig into his pockets for a new telephone? Although all of us from ’48A are of similar age, J.Y. and I were actually born on the very same day, so I watch his state of health with interest. So far I can report that we are both still alive! We keep in close touch with Paul and Sarah Stagg, and Paul’s interest in VMI sports is unlimited. Paul, along with John Trumbo and Dale Wykoff have again purchased season football tickets and while sitting together hope that we’ll have a reasonably rewarding year. Bill and Lamar Whitmore are doing well. Bill’s fourth back surgery has limited his mobility but not his mental ability, and we were recently discussing his most recent book “Full Time Doctors – An Endangered Species” and how the practice of medicine has changed. Janet Timberlake is still residing in the family home in Harrisonburg but expects to move to a smaller, more convenient, home soon. It is fun talking with her as she remains so concerned and interested in everything that is happening in ’48A. Dora Meler has been on vacation in Utah and has been so busy since returning that it has been difficult keeping up with her! I guess that’s the price one must pay to work in New York’s high finance district! Speaking of finances, the ’48A Scholarship will be awarded soon, and I shall pass 2010-Issue 4

the information on as soon as I hear the amount and to whom it has been awarded. You may recall that the cadet to whom it was last given left VMI before the end of the academic year, so the financial status of that amount is unclear. As far as overall giving in FY 2009, our class has been outstanding! Of the 10 solicitable members, every one donated! No other class had a 100% record except the very senior classes of 1934 and earlier. Please stay in touch.


Louis Castellano Jr.

By the time this VMI Review issue reaches you, the reunion of Oct. 22, 2010, will be history. We had 14 Brother Rats committed to the reunion. Interestingly, I received two telephone calls. One from the class agent of 1949A and one from a member of the class of 1949B, both applauding the idea of having a reunion every two and a half years. I might mention that for the year 2009, the class of 1948B had a contribution rate of 46.88% and the total contribution was $39,407.00. As I mentioned in one of my previous notes, the Supreme Court of the United States in the decision directing VMI to admit women mentioned that VMI was the highest endowed per capita school in the country. You and I both know that this type of loyalty was generated from the Ratline and the Honor Court system, both of which are the true strengths of the Institute.


James Harrington

Everyone on my mailing list contributed to the Alumni Association during VMI’s most recent fiscal year. Many thanks! In a short note, David Flippin indicates that he, like the rest of us, is not often involved in any adventurous activities, but he does write! He and Sarah have celebrated their 82nd and 83rd birthdays (respectively) this year and more recently, their 60th wedding anniversary. David would appreciate letters from his “long lost” Brother Rats: 700 S. Holden Road,

Apartment 104, Greensboro, NC 27407. From Stan Millimet: “I’m sorry, I almost forgot. Not that I have anything exciting to write about. I’m still ecstatic over the scholarship that my son, Scott, established in my name – and he already has one daughter at Rice U. in Houston, and next year, he’ll have the twins in college. What a great son he is! I’ve already forgiven him for being an Aggie (Texas A&M). Otherwise, all is pretty quiet. I do important things like feed the birds – every day, if I don’t forget. And I still read a lot – two papers a day – plus watch Fox News. Where I come from, that makes it a busy day. We did have a nice visit from our daughter last month – she’s another Texan. “I do think about you and our classmates often. I hope that each of you is well and enjoying life. These are difficult times for our great nation, so we pray for our brave service personnel in harm’s way and also for every American, especially our loyal citizens who know what path our country should be on. Yeah, Jim, I’m on my soapbox again, but if we don’t speak up and take action, who will? And we have a right to. We have beloved Brother Rats who gave their last full measure for us and our country. We owe them. I’ll keep trying to do something exiting, perhaps even noteworthy – but don’t count on it. Old Father Time keeps exacting his toll.” Here’s Allen Penniman’s lengthy and welcome newsletter: “I glanced at my June and July calendar, and the only thing that I can say is that it has been so hot in Louisiana, I have not even had the courage to go outside, and boarding an airplane is simply out of the question. So, I remained inside in Baton Rouge and have stayed out of the heat. I did make a brief trip to Shreveport to celebrate my sister’s 80th birthday but missed the opportunity to see a granddaughter graduate from Kent, a prep school in Connecticut. Joanie was able to make this trip. “Joanie also made her annual trip to the west to visit children in Amarillo, Albuquerque and Santa Fe. I became the bachelor and stayed around Baton Rouge and suffered. But all is not lost, because we are busy making plans to visit Montana on our annual visit with friends to a beautiful place near Bozeman. The weather will be a vast improvement. Following that, 45

CLASS NOTES Joanie and I are working on a trip to travel the Hudson River Valley area in New York. This is a part of the country that I have not seen for years, and it looks like it will be a wonderful trip. A great amount of history and beautiful homes and many places of historical interest are available. If all holds, I will have much more to report next time Brother Jim calls. “I should not close without talking about the BP oil spill and its affect on Louisiana and the entire Gulf Coast region. This situation has been going on for months, and you hear conflicting reports about the real severity of the problem. There is no doubt that the well has caused millions of barrels of oil to escape into the Gulf. On the other hand, the damage at this point does not seem to be overwhelming. The fishing areas, most of them, are still open, and the quality of the catch as well as the oyster beds is fine. Even the areas that have been closed will probably be reopened, and the government has done a good job in this area. So, eat up and enjoy Louisiana seafood. It won’t hurt you, since you were able to survive four years of mess hall food at Crozet Hall. “The damage to the land is the hardest thing of all to really determine. They have tried to keep the oil out of the marshes and off of the beaches, and it seems like they have been fairly successful. Time will tell, but of course, it is not good at all for the wild life and especially the birds which have been severely damaged. Those of us who hunt are concerned about the duck flight patterns and what the oil has done or will do to the places where migrating ducks and geese feed and rest. The federal government paid to flood the fallow land by the tens of thousands of acres. Hopefully, this will help, because this sport is important and produces great income for the state. We are renowned for our duck and geese hunting. “If you excuse BP for the accident, and I am not sure that is the case, they are doing everything possible to correct this situation. They have hired thousands of people and hundreds of boats to clean the lands and the waters of the oil. They are paying unskilled laborers $18.00 an hour and in some cases, room and board. The extravagance and the waste in these programs is unbelievable, and yet they are trying to clean up this problem. It reminds me of the 46

WPA days when the agency sent eight men and a portolet to mow an old lady’s front yard. She complained about the number of workers and was told that their system was such that there were two a’comin’; two a’goin’; two a’crapin’; two a’mowin’. Highly inefficient, it seems to me. My last comment is that the land and the ocean are forgiving, and I truly believe in due course this will all be corrected. Thank you for your concern. “Joanie and I enjoy good health, and although I am certainly not the first in the class to reach this interesting place in life, Joanie and I had our first great-granddaughter born two weeks ago. A beautiful, great-granddaughter, Lily Mulkey Hussion, is the daughter of Sarah Mulkey Hussion, who is the daughter of Lila Mulkey, who is the daughter of Joanie Penniman. This is the first one of the fourth generation of our family, and I wonder how many more there will be. We are blessed! I send all of my Brother Rats my warmest regards, and for the sake of Louisiana, EAT MORE SEAFOOD.” It’s helpful to have a viewpoint from the source, to moderate the barrage of so-called “news” about the gulf oil spill. As with many of the rest of you, I remember the WPA, the CCC, the NRA and the other alphabet agencies that helped prolong the “Great Depression” for seven or more years. Present day parallels are apparent – just different nomenclature. The Harringtons: Ann and I have spent our summer conducting our usual “Camp Chaos” for visiting children and grandchildren, beginning in June with a week-long visit from our #2 grandson and two of his classmates, new-hatched second lieutenants just graduated from the USMA. Other “campers” followed in July and August and even propose to spill over into September. It’s a busy time, and frankly, it’s taking a toll on our old bones. On the way back from our grandson’s graduation from West Point in May, we stopped off in Lexington, where we drove through the post to get reacclimated from our USMA exposure. The post was empty except for a few summer school students and the ghosts of ’49A. At the Hampton Inn, we remembered good times there and thought of those of you who remain, as well as those who have left our ranks. While there, I checked my home

voice mail and found a message from Harrison Whitten. Harrison had visited Bald Head Island during our absence and made contact. I’m sorry I missed his visit, but I had a nice visit with him by telephone and invited him to join our “cyber club” e-mail contacts. Harrison left VMI after two years, served two years in the Air Force and then was graduated from RPI (now Virginia Commonwealth University). His successful family business, Whitten Brothers, is an automobile dealership in Richmond. Harrison retired in 1993 and has turned the business over to his two sons and a grandson. I spoke with him at his summer retirement place on the Chesapeake Bay. He says he enjoys tennis, traveling and working on antique cars, and he promises to keep in touch with the rest of us. Herb Johnston gets credit for participation, if not for loquacity: “We send greetings but no new news. We are off to the Outer Banks to vacation with our kids and granddaughter as we usually do in Aug. We celebrated our 60th wedding anniversary in June and that was special to us!” Here’s a nice informative note from Joe and Sue Fil: “We have enjoyed brief visits from family recently. Joe, our oldest, spent some time in D.C. and was able to spend a few days with us and his brothers. He has been appointed as Inspector General [Army] and will leave Korea sometime in the near future. Right now, he is involved with maneuvers with the South Korean military forces in preparation for their assumption of the major defense responsibility of the peninsula. He probably will hand over the 8th Army when this is completed. We are looking forward to his transfer to this continent. While he was here, we had the excuse to get the family and friends together for a reception at a local restaurant. Our grandson, Paul, visited us with his new wife, Natalie. She is pretty, intelligent, hard working and all the good things. It’s terrific having such a super new granddaughter. We showed them the area and our little valley. They spent some time with their uncles, cousins, etc. and covered all the places of interest here in the Bay Area. We have had some very cool weather lately. The Bay Area has many mini-climates. SF and the coast have been completely socked in with heavy fog. Our valley has had blue skies and 70 degrees (cool for this time of the VMI ALUMNI REVIEW

CLASS NOTES year). Sue received a lovely letter from Margaret Butler. She has wonderful family support and reports all her children are fine and doing very well. Larry did a great job. Charlie (Tiller) and I communicate occasionally, and it is always nice to hear a voice. Sue and Nancy had a nice connection. I’m still involved in repairing this old house and have started some gardening activities. I just transferred eight redwood and incense cedars into five- gallon cans and started about 30 gal. cans of ivy which I will plant when the rains start ... We had all the wall to wall carpet removed and the floors refinished, so the house looks quite different, and we like it much better. We have been in this tent for 50 years, so change is good. Our East Coast family beckons, but something always comes up, and we remain the barnacles we are. So, let’s get together for a mini reunion while we can still get around. Sue and I will head up to the lake for a couple of weeks. I hope to get the boat in the water and do a little fishing. Hope all is well with you and Ann and that Camp Chaos is in full swing.” OK, that’s it for this issue. On a personal note, the youngsters of ’49B have lost a stalwart brother. Somewhere, perhaps in the 1949 Bomb, there’s a photo of me apparently winning a two-mile race. Frank Liddell is pictured right behind me, smiling. That’s what I remember about Frank – not his speed and stamina but his grace and understanding that I might need more points to earn my track letter. There is no way I could outrun Frank – but on more than one occasion, he made it possible for me to win. I was usually able to stay close enough, on those long two- and four-mile runs to hear Frank singing, “Like me, I guess, he’d like to rest, where there’s no quest for water – cool, clear water.”


Dan Smaw

These are the class notes for August 2010. Sadly, I report the death of our beloved Brother Rat Frank Liddell. He died peacefully at home on 27 June with his family and close friends by his side. He is survived by three children, three step-children, sev2010-Issue 4

eral grandchildren and step-grandchildren, as well as Lise Putman Liddell, the mother of their children. We offer our deepest condolences to all the family. Frank is well known in VMI circles for his achievements on the track team. Jim Harrington ’49A wrote that he ran behind (way behind) Frank for many miles and during practice on warm or hot days when most, except Frank, were dragging, Frank would tease them by singing, “Cool Water.” Frank served VMI in many ways – on the board of visitors, board of trustees of the Foundation and as a generous contributor. He will be missed by his Brother Rats. (Editor’s Note: Mr. Liddell’s obituary appears in the Taps section of this Review.) Tommy Challoner called in May to say he and Glad would not be coming to Georgia, as planned, since she fell in a North Carolina welcome station and sustained a broken back. They returned to Richmond where she had surgery. We wish you a complete and speedy recovery, Glad. Charlie Upshaw called on 15 May to wish me a happy New Market Day. His grandson, Andrew ’06, had a short time left on his second Iraq tour. After that, he expects to attend an Intelligence school, since that seems to be his field of interest. Charlie says Andrew has taken advantage of the R and R system and gone to several countries – Australia and New Zealand being the latest. Helen Casey called in May to say a couple of BRs had called Mark since his phone number, 248/960-1727, was in recent Class Notes. He enjoyed their calls – now, let’s see several more of you give him a call. Helen takes him out to lunch one or two times a week in nice weather. He is doing okay. On 24 May, I got a call from a voice way out of the past, Fred Duggan. He had recently received the Alumni Review and decided to call. He, David Ameen, Si Hart, Bill Hawkins and George Ritchie left VMI after the first semester of our third class year and entered the Naval Academy from which they graduated. Fred told me which branch of the Navy each went into – of course, I don’t remember all the details. Fred would be interested in coming to our next reunion and is sorry he did not come to the 60th. We had a lengthy conversation,

and it was good to hear from him. Greg Nelson wrote that his one-day mini reunion on 26 May turned out very well. The lunch was a big success and most stayed for the Glenn Miller Orchestra concert. The attendees were: Harv and Barbara Bradley, Beanie Branch, Tommy Challoner, Tom and Virginia Cooke, Nux Enochs, Max Feinman, Gertie Gault (came with Nux), Benny and Page Harmon, Carel and Ikey Humme, Grover and Teancy Outland, Margaret Lee Overton, Buddy and June Marshall, Dan and June Payne, Ding and Nobbie Patton, Jackie Prillaman, Leo and Evelyn Soucek, Bill and Ann Stribling, Mack Van Hook, Ed and Deegee Watling, George Wolfe, and Kitty and Greg Nelson. Inge Van Hook had some trouble from cataract surgery, Jane Dooley had a bad back problem and Glad Challoner was recovering from back surgery – they could not attend. Ding Patton called in late May and said that after Greg’s lunch, they went to northern Virginia to a family birthday, then were returning to Florida. In early June, Tommy Bowers called and wanted an address – he thinks I run a directory service, which is partially true. We talked about several things, including his “hard duty” in the Caribbean. Leo Soucek wrote in early June to say they had enjoyed Greg’s mini – food was good, music was good, conversation was good and the traffic back to D.C. was better than usual. You can’t ask for more than that. Ding Patton called on 10 June to say that Nobbie’s ankle was doing well after the removal of pins placed in it when she broke it in Romania a year or so ago. They were planning to go to Wintergreen, VA, the next week. He had talked with Boyd Guttery recently. Nux Enochs wrote in June to say what a success Greg’s luncheon was. He was surprised at the large turnout. He said Gertie Gault had a good time seeing and visiting with old acquaintances. I talked with Earthmole Lewis in June shortly after the city had had bad flooding. He said they were not affected. Earlene was doing well which is good to hear after all her treatments. He had talked with Frank Liddell recently. In late June, I talked with both Beth 47

CLASS NOTES and Danny Myers. They are doing well and enjoying their gardens and koi pond. Danny’s prostate cancer is being well controlled and causing no problem at this time. He is interested in our next reunion, since they missed the 60th. Harv and Barbara Bradley were going to Boone, NC, in July to visit some of his family. They were then going to Hendersonville, NC, to Barbara’s family reunion. Bill Sweeney called in late June to talk about Frank Liddell, as they were roommates during the Rat year. Bill said Nada is still having a few medical problems which require treatment. Following his birthday, Leo Soucek says he can’t notice any difference from a year ago. He said it is a good thing we did not have to pass in review at the 60th.since it would look odd to be pushing a wheeled walker pass the reviewing stand. As we all know, old age ain’t for sissies. Louise and I spent the first week of July on the Outer Banks of NC at our annual family reunion. While there, we helped Louise celebrate her 80th birthday. After an absence of three years being stationed on the West Coast, our grandson, Andrew Timpner ’07, and his wife, Christin, were with us part of the time. I talked with Grover Outland in July, then received a note from him going over everything we talked about. If that sounds strange, it is because I was not home when Grover called, so he wrote a note. He said he and Teancy had spent a couple of weeks in June and early July on the Eastern Shore with their three children, their spouses and seven grandchildren. They had a wonderful time and caught and ate lots of flounder, enjoyed the family and caught up on some reading. Grover had talked with Mark Casey who told him he needed a VMI bumper sticker for his scooter. Grover called Buddy Bryan ’71 at the Foundation who is to send Mark one. He said he enjoyed Greg’s mini in Richmond which was very nice. The partial knee replacement he had in the winter is completely okay. He recommends the least invasive procedure as the way to go. He and Teancy are going to Connecticut in August to take a cruise – I think it is to Canada and New England. Greg Nelson wrote in mid-July that he and Kitty returned from two weeks in Nan48

tucket at the end of June. While there, the temperature never went above 75. Now, he is sweltering like all the rest of us in the South. Since Kitty no longer plays tennis, she is back in the pet rescue business and their basement is filled with kittens – Greg lost count. He wishes the “adoption-out” process was as quick as the acquisition process. Greg’s daughter spent 10 days in July in Newfoundland, where her mother (Greg’s first wife, Dottie) was born and raised. She did a lot of genealogical research, visited a lot of relatives, did some sightseeing (including a whale watch), and just had an interesting and enjoyable visit. Greg’s older son landed a position as vice president of Sales and Marketing with a company in NC after being out of work for 18 months. That made Greg’s whole month. Tom Cooke wrote that one of his volunteer programs is “Habitat for Humanity.” He and Virginia travel the county in a pick-up truck collecting cans (mostly beer cans) at several collection sites that collect cans in “Recycling Huts.” The $0.54/# helps build Habitat Homes. The program has raised approximately $50,000 in four years – not bad for a bunch of beer cans. I talked with Lon Walter in early August. Their daughter, Beverly, had serious back surgery in July but was recovering very well, even though limited in doing some things, like driving. Their grandson, Matthew (Terry’s older son), entered the Air Force Academy in July as a “Doolie.” I hope the spelling is right, since I am not familiar with AF terminology. Lon had talked with Mark Casey recently. Our next reunion is now scheduled for 7-8 Oct. 2011 in Lexington. As usual, “Early Birds” will come on 6 Oct. This puts it halfway between the 60th and the 65th – five years is too long to wait. It is too early to know where we will be staying and having dinners, but you will hear later. This is an early warning so you don’t come up with any scheduling conflicts. I hope all BRs and SRs will make a real effort to attend. Since I am new to Lexington reunions, I will be looking for volunteers from those of you in Virginia, other states are not excluded. Greg is exempt, because he is our expert reunion leader. For Fiscal Year 2010, VMI had an overall participation rate of 34%. The ’49B

rate was 57.69% with 45 BRs and 4 SRs contributing. Thanks to each one of you, and for those who missed last year, please make it this year. Louise and I are going to Michigan next week for our granddaughter, Ashley Timpner’s, wedding. She will marry Kurt Helfrich ’08. More on this in the next notes. God Bless America, VMI and ’49B.


Haywood France

All you Brother/Sisters must have had an active summer. The lack of correspondence would indicate sore muscles, especially in the writing hand and dialing finger. I hope all had a great summer, and we look forward to hearing about all the travels, visits and relaxing you experienced. I had a nice note from Mary Ellett stating that she and Bob didn’t have anything exciting to report, which was probably a good thing at this stage/age. She and Bob are still very active, Bob with his plants and she with her parttime teaching at two universities. She was also the invited speaker at the grand reopening of the Virginia Museum in Richmond. It had undergone two years of renovation and is now twice the size. Caroline Robertson called with a question about the Class Scholarship Fund. She wanted to know how to contribute to the fund. For your information, you can make your usual contribution to VMI Annual Giving and designate the contribution to the ’49C Scholarship Fund. Tom Hawkins called and said that he and Arlene were doing well and managed to keep up with their appointments. They are still recuperating from the great time they had on their cruise. Stew Snoddy reported on some good news received from Heinie Henzel. He is doing great and has adapted well to his new North Carolina lifestyle. I’m sure he will incorporate several Heinie modifications to his present style. I have his phone number, if you would like to give him a call. I received a letter from the Alumni VMI ALUMNI REVIEW

CLASS NOTES Association concerning the new Register of Former Cadets. They have had better than 60% participation from the alumni. Better than 14,000 alumni have updated their information. The Register should be complete and published in the near future. Fiscal year 2010 is closed, and ’49C alumni had a participation rate of 72.7% in Annual Giving for the year. This is slightly lower than last year and is below our goal of 100%. The Institute’s alumni had a participation rate of 34%. Thanks are extended to all, and let’s keep the effort going to reach 100% participation.


Bill Moore

Anne and I had the joy of surprising Dick Mandt recently on a Sunday afternoon at the Bryan Center in Mooresville, NC, where Dick is successfully recuperating from bypass surgery to improve circulation in his left leg and foot. He has had the right one successfully completed previously. Our visit coincided with a birthday party for Jeanne. We “crashed” a lovely celebration and enjoyed visits with sons Rich and David and many friends of Dick and Jeanne. Our granddaughter, Savannah (6), was with us and enjoyed the visit (and cake!) almost as much as Anne and I did. Dick is chomping at the bit to get back home, and it seems probable that he will soon be able to do just that. Jeanne looks and sounds great with no outward sign of memory problems. Both send their greetings and best wishes. Dick Martin is battling another round of cancer with a small tumor near the site of the original one. No sign of the original, but careful watching of that area has revealed a small, nearby tumor. Prompt attention gives us all great hope that it can be handled in the same manner as the original (successfully). Dick is already in the first chemo treatment phase and is not looking forward to the next phase which involves external beam radiation. He well remembers the loss of strength, energy and well being of the last time around. He is already experi2010-Issue 4

encing some of this but sounds feisty as ever, which, of course, is a good sign. Jackie is his and our rock, as she has always been. If anyone can get Dick through this, it will be Jackie. Jackie, we all love and thank you. Elliott Hudgins had a small stroke in June. Nan tells me that he is completing a rigorous physical therapy regime and is rapidly regaining functions that were originally lost or impaired. He has/is working very hard at rehabilitating with great success. Elliott even had to relearn how to write and do math calculations, along with other basic skills. Brain scans show very little damage except small areas associated with the mentioned skills. Shows what prompt observation and intervention can accomplish, even at our age. We can thank Nan for the promptness. Incidentally, there is mention in the last class of 1990 notes that their son, Reed ’90, and his battalion were bound for Afghanistan. The latest “skinny” is that they are no longer bound for that particular hell hole but are destined for “elsewhere.” I can’t in good faith include Bill and Carol Clark with our “walking wounded” above. They are still, like most of us, “keeping on keepin’ on,” as Bill so accurately puts it. Both have long-running problems, as, again, do most of us. Biggest news is that Bill is going to have his pacemaker replaced – not because it’s not doing its job, but because there is a more advanced model available. Carol is taking maintenance chemo, but this has been the case for some time. They still have time and energy to visit and enjoy visits of their relatively nearby children and grandchildren. Syd and Beverly Stealey are planning to expand their scope of travel with a visit to Whitehorse soon. Syd and I had a discussion of the “rocks” in the Alaskan fog bank that crashed Sen. Stevens’ plane and concluded that it was a “mighty big rock.” I had a chance to get details of Kenny and B.J. Stagg’s trip to Israel and Egypt. They returned just before our reunion, but we just never seemed to have the opportunity to talk about it between all the reunion activities. They had a well-planned and fascinating trip to both places. Of interest to me was that

part of their Israel trip involved going into the West Bank to the Christian holy places there. Of particular interest was Kenny’s account of their observation and conversations with the locals about conditions in the West Bank. I’ll refrain from repeating details lest I get accused of meddling in Middle Eastern politics. I will say that it appears to me that we seldom get the complete story of conditions as they exist over there. The Egyptian portion of their trip included a trip down the Nile from below the Aswan dam to a spot just upriver from Cairo. This portion included the famous Valley of the Kings, which they thoroughly enjoyed. They plan another trip to California in October. Another of our peripatetic (that’s LA for rambling) BRs, Jennings and Harriett Bunch, have returned from a family wedding in Seattle and from visits to both Jennings’ and Harriett’s family members in the Pittsburgh area. You just can’t keep good people down or still! They are doing well in spite of nagging back problems (Harriett), again, like a lot of us. Barbara (Hugh) Barnes and granddaughter Brooklyn spent a fun time at the sea turtle preservation center on St. Simon Island, SC, this summer. Lots of hands-on stuff and presentations they both enjoyed. Even included a stint on a shrimp trawler and dissecting a baby shark that the trawler snagged. Apparently, Brook didn’t care too much for the later operation! Unlike most of us, Mary (Joe) Ripley is eagerly awaiting her next birthday. Her daughter, Anne, is taking her to Ireland in September for the occasion. It’s something Mary has long wanted to do, and I’m so glad it’s working out for her. She sends her love to all and regrets that she was unable to attend the reunion. Gene Witcher reports that son Lee has bought a new house and that it’s plenty big for both of them to have their space without colliding, so Gene is moving in with him. I’m glad for both of them. Gene’s health is still good, but it’s comforting to have a loved one nearby at our ages. Joanne (Ed) Miller has moved from her 40+-year home in Alexandria into a smaller apartment in nearby Springfield, VA. She misses her 49

CLASS NOTES old home but had come to realize that it was just too much to keep up. Joanne still drives which is a great comfort when you’re as active and involved as she always has been and still is. She had promised a visit sometime when she and her daughter, Maria, visit her granddaughter, a sophomore at UVa. I finally caught up with Nancy (Hank) McWane. Previously when I’d call, I’d get no answer and just assumed that she might be visiting one of her daughters on the West Coast – Catherine in Portland, OR, or Blanche in Ventura, CA. Not so. Nancy was at home all the time. She spends a lot of time outside, as she has a large farm to take care of. Her third daughter, also Nancy, is in Lynchburg. They are looking forward to a visit from Catherine very soon. Nancy is doing well and sounds great. Even Anne and I got into the rambling act this summer, though we no longer consider ourselves great travelers. For one thing, there’s generally too much of interest going on at home. For example, son David ’86 is building a new Moore’s Country Store in the TimberlakeBrookville area west of Lynchburg. I’m thoroughly enjoying being a “NATO observer” and meddling. And for another thing, both of us hate air travel, as it’s presently done. We much prefer the auto for up to 1500 miles. I’m very fortunate that my eyesight is better than when I was younger and that I still have good night vision. We’re also fortunate that Anne’s driving abilities still enable us to have a competent relief driver, except during night/rain conditions. We need to be holed up anyway under those conditions. Having hit on the “do’s, don’ts, bewares and such,” we still escaped two weeks of brutal hot weather by going to one of our favorite places – Brier Island, Nova Scotia … 70-degree days and 60-degree nights. Granddaughter Savannah and David’s mother-in-law, Penny Thomas, went with us. David and his oldest daughter, Hailey, flew to Halifax and joined us on Brier Island for a few days. Daughter Laura and her family were also there. Not only did we greatly enjoy the cool weather, but we always enjoy the local people and the good seafood. 50


Robert White

Our 60th Reunion is now history, but I have a few observations which I believe are worthwhile. Dee Dee Shepherd was everywhere. He did dozens of things that made the party that much better, from seeing that the hospitality room was open and properly stocked (Mary Buchanan and Helen Talbott supplied the bar) to helping Hoge Sutherland assist Tom Kelly to march with the class. Seeing Tom Kelly and George Oliver marching with the class to the courtyard of the new Barracks was truly inspiring. Jane Patton caused Lexington County Club to be opened for our Tuesday night banquet, and the dinner that we had was the best banquet food that I have ever enjoyed. Jane was also the one who got Gen. Peay ’62 to be our speaker the night before. The memorial service by Gloria Berberich was a time to honor our entire class but also to reflect on how much the friendship and kinship of Brother Rats no longer with us still means and always will. Bill Kelly, in his own elegant way, thanked Ralph Warren for his 10 years of superb service as class agent. That service was truly above and beyond the call of duty. Braxton Green, in addition to organizing golf for those who wanted to play, did a great job of marching us from the parade reviewing stands to the Barracks courtyard where he and Tommy Kirk led the cheer for 1950-B. Walter Edens ’40 was never more beautiful than when he was climbing the ladder to the sentry box and leading his class of 1940 in their cheer. And that includes being on the cover of The Saturday Evening Post as first captain during the VMI Centennial in 1939. The entire picture in the courtyard was priceless – the reunion classes around the sentry box; the old yells by alumni present, joined by hundreds of cadets assembled around the stoops; the band playing; and everybody singing the “Spirit” and then the “Doxology.” It was a time to be cherished. Add to all of these things the social

interaction of all of our Brother Rats and ladies present, the reunion gave to all of us something solid to hold onto in these uncertain times. I, for one, would not trade it for the world. I received several nice letters from Tom Kelly. He says that there have been 12 reunions of our class (not counting minis) and that he attended all of them. He also said that all were happy experiences but that the 60th was the best of all … (Perhaps all of that experience was a help.) Seriously, though, a number of Brother and Sister Rats have said the same thing. Red Bragg also wrote to say how much he and Ruth had enjoyed all of the things that happened at the 60th. He also stressed his appreciation for Ralph Warren and his 10 years of excellent service as class agent. Perhaps you already know that Red and Ruth are from Huntington, WV. I say that because it seemed appropriate for him to sign off as he did: “Please remember that coal keeps the lights on.” Gus Jones volunteered to give each Brother Rat at the reunion a T-shirt and a hat, both decorated with the VMI insignia. I took him up on it and received a beautiful hat and T-shirt. I do not have a count of how many other Brother Rats did the same. It was a nice thing for him to do. I have heard from Jones Felvey who, as you may know, lives in the northern neck of Virginia. The area needs affordable housing for teachers, nurses, government workers and the like, but almost all of the housing available is too expensive. So, Jones is in the process of building 40 affordable houses (in the $120,000 range) on 20 acres and selling them in an affordable way, as to down payment and ongoing charges. The entire project is pro bono as far as Jones is concerned, and it’s of tremendous value to the area. There are already eight houses built or under construction. Jones is convinced that there are other locations having similar needs where Brother Rats live, and he would be delighted to share his knowledge of how to do it. I believe that the whole project is a wonderful thing for Jones to have undertaken, and heartiest congratulations to him are in order. Let me hear from you. Your Brother Rats like to hear what you are doing and how things are going with you and your families. VMI ALUMNI REVIEW



John Ross

This note covers the period May 12-Aug. 12, 2010. My first contact in this period was a call from Doc Laville, who reported on a visit with Brom Nichol in Pensacola. Doc reported Brom is very upbeat, despite his medical problems. Doc also had an opportunity to meet Brom’s parrot, Jack. I left Henry Pitot a happy 80th on his voicemail. The next day, I again missed Henry but visited with Julie. She reports they are both doing well and that Henry had a great birthday celebration. I reached both Claud Eley in St. Louis and my Fairfax, VA, neighbor, Jim Connolly, to extend birthday greetings. Jim, who was watching a lacrosse game, reports he and Mary Ellen are fine. Claud is busy teaching a program for seniors at Washington University on World War II. He and Gigi sound good for the 60th. Claud recounted an interesting assignment when he commanded an engineer compound on Iwo Jima in 1954. I reached Jim Close, another Virginia neighbor, to welcome him to the Octogenerian Club. He and Alice had just returned from a granddaughter’s college graduation and intended to celebrate his birthday at a dinner in Georgetown that evening. I failed to reach Gene Held in Shavano Park, TX, as the telephone number previously used is no longer a working number. I then called Jim Coley, who lives in the vicinity, for assistance, but he was unsuccessful. Any help would be appreciated. I was disappointed to learn that Jim and Gayle will be unable to make the 60th due to mobility problems. I failed to reach Brom Nichol on his birthday but left greetings on his voicemail. Shortly thereafter, Brom reported his brother and wife had visited him for three days, which he greatly enjoyed. He hopes to make the 60th but not sure how he will get to Lexington. I left birthday greetings with Don Baldwin’s wife, Jody, who reported they are doing well. Don subsequently called to thank me and informed me that his 2010-Issue 4

roommate, Rav Marshall, had a book in publication on early Virginia history. I left birthday greetings for both Virginia Wick and Charlotte Marr. Sam Scott called to thank me for his birthday card, and we had a long reminiscing session. When I called him two days later on his birthday, he was out, so I talked with Jessie. She had just had successful cataract surgery on one eye and was scheduled for the other. I put Marie on the phone and let the two nurses discuss the medical procedures. I received a postcard from Paul Shrader, dated May 20, 2010. He writes, “Was in Lexington two weeks ago. VMI stunned me! It’s glorious! Talked to Brom Nichol two days ago. We are hanging tough. Semper Fi … Paul.” I call your attention to Paul’s description of VMI today – “Glorious.” So, if you have not visited the Institute recently, come to the 60th, and see what Paul is talking about. I checked on E.J. May’s progress in recovery from back surgery a number of times. After some time in the hospital and then in his community’s health facility, Ed is finally at home and doing well. He is in rehab, but his surgeon has given him a good report. Shortly after receiving Paul Shrader’s postcard, I had a phone call from Polly that Paul had a heart attack and surgery

for three blocked arteries. Subsequent to surgery, Polly reported on Paul’s progress, culminating in his discharge from the hospital, and he now is recuperating at home. Beano and Ann Graf are not likely for the 60th. Both have medical problems that impair mobility. I reached Bill Hairston in Hickory, NC, to extend birthday wishes. He had just been discharged from the hospital after surgery and faces a long rehab. Marie had a nice telephone chat with Nancy Hill. The Parks are now on the net – I welcomed Pete Philp to the Octogenerian Club and learned that he is still working two days a week at a thrift shop and facing knee replacement surgery. I finally reached Lain Peck in Connecticut to extend birthday greetings. He lost his wife five years ago. Lain will consider the 60th but cannot drive as far as Lexington. Brom Nichol had outpatient surgery to remove a malignant growth and is doing well at home along with Jack. Jim Connolly was forced to spend another weekend in the hospital to drain a fluid build-up. Yet he did not miss a beat as our network coordinator – ’51 owes him big time. I received a call from Henry Pitot thanking me for the birthday greetings and card.

Class of 1951: On a summer 2010 vacation at the Windsor Castle, Berkshire, England, were from left, Joe Tom and Frances Howard, Royal Guard, and Colby ’92 and Adrienne Howard.


CLASS NOTES He and Julie had just returned from her brother’s funeral in Biloxi, MS. They both are doing well and expect to see Kay Bennett at their vacation community in the near future. Henry is still teaching but has reduced his load. I missed Mrs. Agnor in Charlottesville and left birthday greetings. I reached George Cohen in Hilton Head to welcome him to the Octogenerian Club and to wish him a happy Father’s Day. He and Marty are doing well, and George is a definite for the 60th. I received an e-mail from Gibson Gay that his wife of 60 years, Cathy, died of pneumonia on June 17th. I immediately acknowledged and offered condolences. Fred Anson called from Ironton, OH, for contact information on Sid Hannah. Fred and Rose are doing well and looking forward to the 60th. I called Patty Blackwell in Abingdon, VA, and wished her a happy birthday. We reminisced about Mack, and I learned she has a daughter in Roanoke. Patty indicated she may make the 60th, and I assured her that all the widows will be most welcome. I received a most welcome postcard from Paul Shrader, dated July 2: “Happy 4th! Glad you care about me. It sure helps. I’m free from hospital – in cardiac rehab to build strength. Doing great. Have a great gal in Polly. Semper Fi – Paul.” I called Jackson Davis to check on his implant and talked to Laverne, as Jack was at a luncheon. Jack subsequently reported that he is doing fairly well in his recovery from a defibrillator implant. Jack also said he had a nice telephone visit with Jack Nichols in Asheville, NC. Dave Kneessey checked in from Indianapolis. He is a definite for the 60th and will be accompanied by a daughter. Dave is in good health and most anxious to see all the new buildings and improvements at VMI. I was put in contact with Jessica Yates, a granddaughter of Bob Moss, who wanted a 1951 ring for a shadow box. Bob’s had been buried with him. I explained the die for the ring was no longer available, that the generic VMI ring is not similar and that the cost of new rings is considerable. She was naturally disappointed but seemed to understand. I then called VMI and reported on the foregoing. 52

I received word from Duane Holloway that Nancy Bell, widow of my roommate, Herb, died on July 9th in Williamsburg. I received a letter from Paul Robinson in Neenah, WI, informing me that his roommate, Rav Marshall, had a book of early Virginia history, titled The Jamestown Century, published in 2009. He also enclosed a copy of the title page, the index, forward and preface, all of which indicate the book would be of interest to those interested in the beginning of Virginia. Everyone on the VMI ’51 mailing list should have received by mid July a letter from the Reunion Committee providing information on our 60th. Please read it and respond. Try to make it. Paul Shrader, still in cardio rehab, has responded that he and Polly are coming. I left birthday greetings for Jane Catlin on her voicemail. I received a very thoughtful thank you note from Robin Jordan. She notes that John “Loved ‘The Institute’ and his years there.” I subsequently had a call from Robin in which she reports the family is doing well. Robin is also considering the 60th, and I told her the class is most desirous for the Sister Rats to join us. Marie and I traveled to Williamsburg for the funeral of Nancy Bell. On the day before, we had a nice visit with the Holloways – lunch and dinner. The next day the celebration of Nancy’s life was in Bruton Parish Church, the colonial era Episcopal Church. Following the ceremony, there was a reception at the Williamsburg Inn, where we had a chance to visit with the Bells’ three daughters. It was a very nostalgic occasion for me – a few days after our graduation, I was in Herb’s and Nancy’s wedding in the same church, followed by a reception in exactly the same room at the inn. After the funeral, we had a chance to visit with Barbara and Jack Lowden and Duane Holloway. I failed to reach Ellen Johns on her birthday, as I do not have a current telephone number. Dick Cole e-mailed me thanks for my birthday wishes. He reports that at 81, he has no complaints, plays 36 holes a week, visits Las Vegas every year to escape the Minneapolis winter and Mona is fine. Dick

is not sure about the 60th. I responded, urging him to join us for the reunion. I reached Sheila and Rav Marshall who had just returned from a visit to the Canadian Rockies. I visited with Rav with regard to his recently published book on Colonial Virginia. The Marshalls are a definite for the 60th. After multiple attempts since last January, I reached Ellen Nelson just before she left for a family visit to the state of Washington. Ellen sounds very favorable for the 60th. Tom Wornham reports from La Jolla, CA, that he and Pinkey are doing well. He has not been back to visit the Institute since graduation and would like to make the 60th but is not sure. I urged him to make every effort. I wished Willard Hays a happy birthday and thanked Peggy for the great work on our Reunion Committee. The Hays had just returned from England, visiting their daughter and new grandchild. I wished Lang Sheffield in Americus, GA, a happy birthday. He has some mobility problems but expects to make the 60th. I left birthday greetings for Bland Wilson in Birmingham, and he called me back with thanks. Bland is doing well and was watching golf on TV. He hopes to make the 60th and inquired about Johnny Lyden and Bobby Guthans. Speaking of golf, Bonnie Carstens sent me a great picture of Jim Enochs and himself on the 18th tee at Pebble Beach. I hope to have it included with this note. Lee Duval is doing fine in her recovery from abdominal surgery. She is not sure about the 60th. Bob Nolley reports from the North Carolina beach that Jeanne is doing very well in her rehab from knee surgery and that his blood work is still good. He is trying to put together a video for our reunion. Skip Parks had a telephone call from Jim Marshall. Skip still is confident for the 60th. I talked with Glennie Brown in Richmond about our reunion, during which I learned that she was at Nancy Bell’s funeral, sitting near the Lowdens. The church was so packed that I missed her. Jack Evans called to check on his e-mail status. He is still performing inspections of military facilities for the government and looks good for the 60th. VMI ALUMNI REVIEW

CLASS NOTES Ed May reports he is making progress in his rehab following surgery, complicated by pneumonia – still weak. Mary Lee is having a back problem. Right before my deadline, I heard from Pete Philp, who is doing well in rehab after a total knee replacement. And Nancy Hill checked in with Marie to report that Jack is doing well in rehab and that they were leaving Virginia for a week to visit a religious-connected camp in upstate New York. Remember our 60th – April 24-26, 2011, in Lexington. Any questions, contact our chairman, Johnny Gray, at 804/320-5863 or As of mid August, 24 BRs intend to attend with many more indicating favorable consideration. We once again urge our SRs to come – you will be most welcome. Keep the news coming. Marie and I hope you have a great holiday season. Semper Fi – Jack


Nutz Navas

Jim Wiley called Bob Lambert to give him an update on Carol’s condition. Carol was diagnosed with inoperable lung cancer. Jim and Carol decided to proceed with a regimen of chemo and radiation, which resulted in the best possible outcome. She is, for now, free of this terrible disease. Things were looking so good that they were planning on attending the VMI-William and Mary football game in Williamsburg! In fact, Bob and Betty were trying to organize a dinner before the game with Walter Ames, Zeke and Sarah Finney, Gary and Sandra Pittman, Bill and Anne Ruffin, Jim and Carol Wiley, and the Lamberts. Jim Mecredy writes that he and Lucette are both healthier than they deserve to be and are happy that God is keeping them around for further service. Jim went to the doctor recently, and the doctor could find nothing wrong with Jim. Earlier this summer, they went to two weddings. Lucette’s grand-nephew was married in Cleveland, OH, on May 28, and her granddaughter, Jerusa (David’s daughter), was married 2010-Issue 4

on June 5. It took them only three days to recover. David was class of ’78. They see Tim often (class of ’80), since they are only five minutes away. Tim’s son, Michael, just graduated from Georgia Tech and is working for an environmental company in Nashville. Weir Goodwin wrote from Houston that he had nothing to report except that he was getting too old to still be alive! All three of his sons live nearby, and he sees a lot of them. Weir lives in the Village at Memorial City, which is a retirement facility, and says his apartment is quite nice, quite spacious and very comfortable. He admits that his legs have given out on him. He uses a walker for short distances and a Power Chair for longer ones. Charlie Piper writes that things have been pretty routine this year, and he and Sharon are in fine health. They are leaving for a six-week trip to Europe in early September. He calls it a “once in a lifetime trip.” First they are going to Edinburgh, Scotland, for a few days and will see the Military Tattoo at Edinburgh Castle. Then, they will go on to Amsterdam and board a ship that goes up the Rhine and ends at Budapest, Hungary. They will rent a car there and start west through Austria and go to Munich and Oktoberfest for a few days. After that, they plan to drive through Germany, France and the Low Countries for two weeks and fly out of Amsterdam on Oct. 5. His last sentence is, “I see where Bobby Thompson died. I’ll always remember when he hit the home run because of the loud moans from you that you could hear all over the post.” Rem Simpson called Hume Powers in mid August and said he seems to be doing OK. Hume doesn’t drive anymore, but he and Pat go to the mall six days a week and walk, which is good exercise for both of them. J.B. Hyatt writes that he is still doing his usual stuff where he “rags” Obama, Reid and Pelosi, but that is “old hat” for most of us. His brother, Onza Hyatt ’58, took the whole Hyatt family, about a dozen of them, and in August, went to enjoy two timeshares in Williamsburg that sleep 12. J.B. says if any of our Bother Rats are interested in keeping in touch with our politicians or the three branches of government in Washington, we can get a copy of the Original Congress Handbook, 8120

Woodmont Ave., Suite 110, Bethesda, MD 20814, www.uscongresshandbook. com, phone: 1-800/USCH (8724). The listed price is $18.95. He says it gives all you need to know about the people in our three branches of the federal government in Washington. Now is a good time to keep track of these politicians! Chris Holland writes that when he and Sugar were up this way last year visiting Sally Birge, he gave me information on Tommy, Weir, Buck Boxley and himself, which I neglected to put in our class notes at the time. I apologize for that, because it was material I thought would be great to have. So, here it is in its entirety: “On 13 Nov. last year (2009), The Episcopal High School in Alexandria inducted into their Hall of Fame the 1947 football team as one of the most outstanding teams ever. There were four players on the first team that played at VMI. Tommy Birge was the first inductee when it was founded. All but one man on the first team at EHS played college football. Four were captains in college, two from VMI. We were undefeated. We won the first game 14 to 13. We got a ‘chewing out’ by the coach the next week. We beat every team by at least 35 to 0 and only had four TDs scored against us. Tommy Birge was captain and all everything – scoring, receiving, kicking – he did it all. Weir played left end, Buck Boxley was left tackle and I played right half. Weir was captain at VMI in 1951, and Buck was captain in 1955. We played both offense and defense. We wore leather helmets. No face masks or teeth guards. No gloves and high-top shoes. Coach Slick Morton wanted Tommy. Weir was already going, as he was enrolled by his father – Nat Goodwin, class of 1917, First Jackson Hope Medalist – the day Weir was born. Slick promised we could room together. That did it. The rest is history at VMI.” In April of this year, Chris was appointed grand master of Masons of South Carolina and as a deputy district grand master for the 29th District. My roommate for two years, Tex Spellings, sends best wishes from Dallas. The first remarks most of you write is, “Everything here is about the same.” So it is with Jim and Darlene. He says they have air conditioning (growing up in Marshall, TX, they did not have it) and realizes how 53

CLASS NOTES lucky we all are, especially this hot and humid summer. He is sweating the world economy and the U.S. government. Most of us feel the same way. One of their grandson’s girlfriends went to W&L. Tex can’t believe it has 51% girls. VMI matriculated 501 new cadets in August. There were 59 females in the mix. The goal is to reach 1,500 cadets at the Institute in the next couple of years, with 10 percent being female cadets. Things have changed dramatically since we attended the Institute 62 years ago. Boyd Guttery reports from Jacksonville, FL, that he had minor procedures done to take out bone spurs and calcium around the screws in his back and to enlarge a spinal column opening, but he was able to fly to Atlanta with his granddaughter for a few days to visit his son, Darryl (her father). She attends the University of Central Florida. Boyd also has a grandson at the University of Miami on ROTC scholarship; a grandson at Georgia; and a grandson and granddaughter at Florida with seven more to go! Boyd has volunteered to host a mini reunion sometime after New Year’s. There is lots to do in the Oldest City. If any of you have any comments on this proposal by Boyd, please let me know.


William C. Noell Jr.

Regretfully, I must start off these class notes with the announcement of the passing of our Brother Rat Dave Kestner in Florida on 18 June. As you know, Dave has had medical problems for right many years and really wanted to come to our 55th Reunion, but when I talked to him just before it, he said that his sprit was willing, but his body was not. According to Mickey Woodward, Dave has attended eight reunions, the last being in 2003. Also, Mickey noted that Dave taught Engineering Drawing at VMI in ’53-’54 – a CE major. He retired from the AF as a lieutenant colonel after 21 years. He lived in Harrisonburg until he moved to Florida. I sent out the obituary (which is in the Taps section of this Review) to those on the class e-mail list. I had an e-mail from Dave’s niece, Valerie, saying that she would like to receive Dave’s copies of the Alumni 54

Review, if possible. This I will check on but will ensure she gets this issue about Dave. An e-mail from Ed Brown and Parker Cross confirmed that Chippy Woods had another stroke in May and was at Maryview Hospital in Portsmouth, where Parker visited with him. At the time, he could not walk but later went home with his daughter, Marbara, and in June was on a walker. He now lives with his daughter, since Liz passed away. At the time, he was getting rehab three times a week. Bob Lambert ’52 worked with Chippy in Franklin and stays in touch with him – Bob lives close to Ed in Kingsmill. Parker Cross had an aortic valve replacement at Cleveland Clinic in June. Said this was being “done on a proactive basis while I am still young.” Parker also told Russ Horne in an e-mail that he was no longer associated with Skype. He did not want everybody to know how bad he looked … looked pretty good for our age at the Richmond lunch in April. Then, a few days ago, I received this comment from Parker: “Post op open heart surgery recovery somewhat derailed by MRSA infection but now on road to mending.” In a note to Bromo Seletz, I mentioned that Judy and I had just finished the book Charlie St. Cloud, which takes place in Marblehead, MA – one of his homes – and we hope to visit up in the area sometime in the near future. He replied, “I apologize for not staying in touch, but I am being treated for Alzheimer’s disease. I am fighting it and refuse to give in.” If anyone happens to be interested in a copy of his novel about VMI and Lexington, I still have some unsold copies. An e-mail from Jack Trigg said that he and Peachy visited Gayle Shorter in Camden in May. They were there for four or five hours and were given a great walking tour of her gardens and house. Jack said that the house was quite lovely, and much of the decor was dedicated to Wyatt’s memory, thus VMI was well represented. Jack advised that he recently ran across Elizabeth Nash Dillard’s bio on “Dodo” and, in May, finished rereading it. Jack recommends it to all who were inspired by Dodo – “He was truly a legend of his time.” Jack also noted that now that he is 78 and has practiced medicine for so long, he now understands Dodo’s

physical problems and such, which he did not when he first read the book. Jack also commented in another e-mail about the loss of the Southern Inn. Said he thought it was old when we were cadets, and he went there many times with a former Southern Sem girlfriend. I had an e-mail from Faye Andrews saying how the Southern Inn was one of her favorite places to eat in Lexington. Faye still has their cabin up at the foot of the mountains in Rockbridge County, out Route 251, although she still lives in their home in Morristown, TN. She was at graduation in May, and I did get to visit with her very briefly on the parade ground. As for the burning of the Southern Inn, it is noted below in my “trivia” paragraph. When Gayle Shorter and family had the memorial services for Wyatt last year in Lexington, we joined the whole family for dinner at the Southern Inn. Also, the last time that I saw Wyatt was when Judy and I had lunch with him at the Southern Inn after a VMI function a couple of years ago. I had a telephone call from Herman Decker saying that he was going to Lexington to visit VMI with his family – his sons and their wives and kids. He called me to find out how to see Barracks, since it was closed up until the Cadre/Rats arrive on Aug. 23rd. He should be there now, as I write these notes, but since we are not in Lexington, we will not be able to visit with him. In the e-mail from Mickey Woodward, he noted that he had talked to Jack and Meredith Townes, and they were heading for England and France in September – planning on visiting Paris and the Normandy beaches. He also stated that he and Betty were getting ready for another trip – a cruise to the northern provinces of Canada in late September. Right now, Judy and I are trying to enjoy the lake and boating here, but the 90degree+ heat in June and July and so far in August has not helped – especially with the humidity. Jennifer and family have been here for several weeks, off and on, since June, and Andy and family were here over a long weekend, so we’ve had a lot of cooking and company – 11 for meals one weekend. So, we have had kids a lot this summer – all happen to be water bugs, so not hard to entertain. In addition, we kept Judson, 3 years old, for 10 days, while VMI ALUMNI REVIEW

CLASS NOTES Jennifer and rest of family were in Boston over July 4th for a week. It was a great experience/fun – but sure kept us going. And below are my comments on the Southern Inn fire, mostly taken from the Lexington News Gazette. I did send out an e-mail announcement on the fire to those on the list. Judy and I have eaten there several times in recent years, and it is quite a change/upgrade from those VMI days, or even when I used to take my son, ’84, there during weekend visits. Those at the 55th will recall that we had our early arrival dinner that Sunday night at the Southern Inn. Lexington Trivia: The historic Southern

Inn burned on the morning of Friday, July 9th, starting about 1:30 a.m. It is believed that the fire was caused by lightning during a major thunderstorm at the time. The inside was almost totally destroyed, roof collapsing into the first floor, but the exterior walls held up. The historic, vintage “Southern Inn” neon sign survived the fire and can be reused when the restaurant is restored. It had just been repaired and repainted last year. The restaurant was established in 1932 by the Macheras family. The room above the restaurant was empty, which is where the Macheras – the building owner’s grandparents – originally lived

at the time the restaurant was established. Alex Macheras and then George and Sue Ann Huger, who run the restaurant, said that they have plans to restore the restaurant. George Huger is a relative of our Brother Rat Scott Huger, who was killed in an auto wreck at VMI in 1954. When I last looked, they were still cleaning out the mess and evaluating the structural condition of the walls. Last estimate that I saw was six to eight months to get back into operation. The Hallmark store next door was damaged, mostly by water, and the adjacent SunTrust Bank had to close for several days due to smoke infestation.

Class of 1953 2010 Richmond and Beyond Lunch Warren and Win Koontz hosted the 2010 Richmond and Beyond ‘53 Lunch at the Country Club of Virginia. Attending the event this year were 39 Brother Rats, wives and friends. Herold and Ellen Hofheimer, Warren and Win Koontz, Robert and Keith Miller, Kenneth and Chris Perry, Luke Witt, Parker and Anna Cross, Warren and Anne Goddard, Reed Johnson, John and Maggie Lund, Frank and Lois Wootton, William and Christina Allison, Webster and Helen Maddux, Terry and Betty Davis, David and Betsy Stuart, Ronald and Elizabeth Haywood, Theodore Mariani, John and Bruce Evans, John and Meridith Townes, John and Doris Gilbert, and Bill and Judy Noell.

2010-Issue 4


CLASS NOTES employed, and shows no sign of easing up. He says he’s “close” to a local high school noted for sending young people of promise to the service academies, especially the one located in Annapolis. He believes that VMI is missing a great opportunity to attract some quality “players” to its hallowed campus and thinks the Institute might be well advised to send some “recruiters” his way. I agreed and told him I’d see what I could do. From what Don says, it might be a pretty good investment in time and effort for the “movers and shakers” in Lexington to invest a little time and interest in Don’s neck of the woods. In that vein, I believe that each of us would be the best possible exemplars and spokespersons for the school in attracting

young person with the right “credentials,” I am not reluctant or hesitant in pointing him in the VMI direction. And I’ve had a pretty good track record in that regard. My latest success story is a young man currently majoring in international studies and carrying a 3.8 GPA. Moreover, as a rising Get three hugs a day for survival, five for second classman, he will serve as a battalmaintenance and eight or more for growth. ion S-3 and is on course for a commission One touch is worth 10,000 words. in the armed forces. He actually loves the I recently read that … “Most people get place, which is kind of scary, I’ll admit, married believing a myth – that marriage but at this point in his development he is a beautiful box full of all things they looks awfully good. It goes without saying have longed for, companionship, intimacy, that I am very proud of him. He’s making romance, friendship. The truth is that me look awfully good. marriage, at the start, is an empty box. You Couldn’t help but recall a letter I remust put something in before you can take ceived from Robert (Bob) MacGregor. As anything out. There is no love in marriage. some of you may recall, Bob only attended Love is in people, and people put it into the VMI for his Rat year but writes … “I marriage. There is no romance in margained much from the Institute. I thank my riage; people have to infuse it into their Jackson-Hope medalist father for sending marriage. me there. Stay on the case. VMI is a great “A couple must learn the art and form the institution”. As I once mentioned in an habit of giving, loving, serving, raising – earlier column, it is interesting and perhaps keeping the box full. If you take out more ironic that some of the most moving and than you put in, the box will empty.” complimentary assertions I have received Sound simple? Then, why should it be so thus far have come from Brother Rats hard and take so long to learn? who, for whatever reason, didn’t graduate Had a brief but rewarding conversaClass of 1954: Bob and Ivy Modjeski. from the Institute. Could it be that they tion with Keith Ewing. Keith is one of a have a basis for comparison which, in dwindling number of BRs still gainfully young people of promise to the VMI. It’s retrospect and in the totality of their life’s employed, at least full time. He says he a big, big responsibility, and I certainly experience, leaves them with an inage, an is doing well, although his BW is having don’t think it’s for everyone, but I do impression of something which they con“some problems with her knees” and will believe it’s the right place for the right guy sider worth remembering? It seems odd, probably undergo replacement surgery. and girl. It’s serious business. I am very I know, but I, too, have formed a deeper Dave Basket reports from Connecticut selective with my encouragement, support respect, admiration even, for a place which that all is well with him at this juncture. and recommendations. But when I meet a grows larger and more important with each He plans to continue “living every day to passing year. Anyway, thanks, the fullest,” as long as time and Bob, for the letter and especially circumstances permit. for the message. Take care. And Spoke with Peggy Trumbo God bless. last evening. (Peggy remains as Had a nice talk with “Easy “effervescent” as ever, always Ed” Garbee’s better half. Both exudes the most pleasant aura halves seem to be holding up – scintillating – and often in pretty well. Ed’s still working the face of daunting adversity.) at Dollywood, as in Tennessee. She said that she and Dick had Reminds me of another story. just returned from a two-week Once the late nite comic, Johnny sojourn to the West with famCarson, was hosting Dolly and ily and friends. I am happy to introduced her this way: “And report that both are doing well, now ladies and gentlemen, here enjoying the proverbial “glass they are, Miss Dolly Parton.” half full” to the best of their Johnny was a very funny guy, ability. Class of 1954: At a Richmond, Virginia, cocktail party hostmaybe the best in the business. Had a nice chat with Don ed by Anne Addison Scott were, from left, George White; Anne He’s sorely missed. Ferry. Don is still “running Terry, wife of Claiborne; Fran White; and Betsy Berry. Not too long ago, I was asked his own show,” i.e., gainfully



Bill Turner


CLASS NOTES by a fairly astute, well-meaning Brother Rat how I was enjoying my role as class agent. I responded that, for the most part, I was enjoying it very much. What I didn’t say is there are certainly times, albeit rare, when the “challenges” posed by this exalted position give me pause. One such occasion transpired recently when I called one of my classmates who was unavailable, but his wife was. She answered the phone and when I asked her if she were “Doris,” she replied, somewhat curtly, I thought, “I am not Doris; neither am I Helen or Betty; I am Hortense, the fourth one. After apologizing profusely for having committed so egregious an error, we proceeded to have what turned out to be a most interesting and informative conversation. She concluded her part of the verbal exchange by telling me that since she had been married to “J” for more than a few years, she had just about concluded that VMI is a place for maladjusted young men. While I sat pondering the weight and wisdom of that decision, she concluded: “Well, Bill, I must admit I have enjoyed our conversation, and I do believe I’ve talked more with you these past 15 minutes than I have talked with ‘J’ for the past three months.” What could I say? What could anyone say? For the life of me, I could not think of anything either clever or witty to say to the lady. So, I said simply, “Thank you, ma’am. I’m glad I could be of service; that’s what I’m here for.” I bid her an almost tearful adieu and moved briskly to the next call. As I say, for the most part, I’m enjoying this job very much. It allows … “opportunities” I would never have otherwise known. Happiness depends on your attitude toward what happens to you, not on what happens to you. Happiness is our choice. That is a reality of life. Moreover, “marriage is like a three-speed gear box: affection, friendship, love. It is not advisable to crash your gears and go right through to love straightaway. You need to ease your way through. The basis of love is respect, and that needs to be learned from affection and friendship.” – Peter Ustinov When you look at relationships that make it, the people are good friends and treat each other with respect; they have shared values, and they trust one another. Trust is the foundation. Without it, you 2010-Issue 4

don’t feel safe. If you don’t feel safe, you can’t be vulnerable. If you’re not vulnerable, you can’t be intimate. Above all, you MUST retain your sense of humor. And, especially, you have to be able to laugh at yourself. I read recently about a wedding ceremony that had just concluded. The groom thrust his hand into his overalls pocket and asked the preacher what he owed him. “In these parts, we don’t charge for the service,” the reverend replied. “But you may pay according to your bride’s beauty.” The groom handed the preacher a dollar bill. The pastor then raised the bride’s veil, took a look and dug into his own pocket. “Here’s 50 cents change.” Oscar Wilde once wrote that “all tragedies are finished by a death. All comedies are ended by a marriage.” But that’s a bit too cynical, even for the likes of me. It’s Saturday morning, and I’ve just gotten off the phone with David (Dave) Crockett. Dave lives in Neptune Beach, FL, and invites any of his BRs who are ever in the area to stop in and sit a spell. I learned a lot about Dave from our conversation. For example, I didn’t know that he was a product of Fork Union Military Academy (FUMA) and that his dad “ran the place” for a while. I didn’t know that he was in the Air Force for three years or that he once had four offers from the pros to play professional baseball. (Dave played first for the Keydets and could hit the stitches off the ball. A “spray” line drive type hitter who almost never struck out, he could also hit for distance. He was one of the Institute’s best.) Dave said he spent more than 18 years at FUMA, which sends many of its graduates to the VMI. Dave sounded great, said he and his wife of many years were doing quite well, and seemed happy and content. He was one of the finest men I knew at the Institute – a genuine, 14kt gold gentleman, in every sense of the word. It was so good talking with him. Very special. Finally, in closing, I’d like to say something quite serious but extremely important. During my recent visit to the Institute, attending the annual Class Agents Conference, I spent a good deal of time visiting VMI’s Hall of Honor in Marshall Hall. I was visibly affected, impressed … and humbled. It is a beautiful tribute to those VMI men who have served

in all of America’s wars and been awarded the nation’s highest decorations for valor. Twelve of our classmates are on that wall! Listed below are their names together with their awards and decorations. One cannot help but be profoundly moved by their sacrifice and service: Anderson Jr., Lt. Col. William C., USAF; Distinguished Service Medal; Distinguished Flying Cross (two awards); Meritorious Service Medal; Air Medal (15 awards). Bramlet, Lt. Col. James W., USA; Silver Star; Legion of Merit; Bronze Star Medal with V (three awards); Meritorious Service Medal (two awards); Air Medal with V (six awards); Army Commendation Medal. Cockes, Lt. Col. Elbert D., USAF; Distinguished Flying Cross; Bronze Star Medal; Air Medal (nine awards) Daniel Jr., Lt. Col. John S., USA; Silver Star (three awards); Legion of Merit (two awards); Soldier’s Medal; Bronze Star Medal (three awards); Purple Heart (two awards); Meritorious Service Medal; Air Medal with V (three awards); Army Commendation Medal with V (four awards). Fuller Jr., Lt. Col. John D.P., USAF; Distinguished Flying Cross; Air Medal (11 awards). Gary III, Brig. Gen. John H., USA; Defense Superior Service Medal (two awards); Bronze Star Medal with V (two awards); Joint Service Commendation Medal (two awards). Hanson, Lt. Gen. Robert A., USAF; Silver Star; Bronze Star Medal; Meritorious Service Medal; Air Medal (seven awards). Jenvey II, Staff Sgt. Arthur C., USA; Bronze Star Medal with V (five awards); Meritorious Service Medal; Air Medal; Army Commendation Medal with V (four awards). Moore, Lt. Col. Robert J., USA; Legion of Merit (two awards); Soldier’s Medal; Bronze Star Medal with V (six awards); Air Medal with V (10 awards); Army Commendation Medal with V (four awards). Phillips II, Brig. Gen. Ran L., USA; Legion of Merit; Bronze Star Medal (three awards); Air Medal (three awards); Army Commendation Medal with V (three awards). Stoy, Lt. Col. Dutton G., USAF; Distinguished Flying Cross; Meritorious Service Medal; Air Medal (three awards); 57

CLASS NOTES Air Force Commendation Medal (three awards). Williams III, Lt. Col. Sylvanus J., USA; Legion of Merit; Bronze Star Medal (two awards); Meritorious Service Medal (two awards); Air Medal (two awards); Army Commendation Medal with V (three awards). Some of them are in poor health now. Some are gone. Jack Daniels, for example, is currently “residing” in the VA Hospital in Nashville, TN. He has been there for over three months, after suffering multiple strokes. “Awful Art” Jenvey didn’t graduate from the Institute but died a hero nonetheless. (I have a special regard for Art who called me several times while I was recuperating from a pacemaker/defibrillator implant.) As some may recall, Art roomed with George Hardy and George “Rocket” Crockett during his short stay at the Institute. I was amused by the revelation that on one occasion, following a “disagreement,” Art tried to force an extremely uncooperative Mr. Hardy’s hand into the electric toaster. I was amused, but I am sure George was not. As you know, George was a little on the serious side, and I am afraid Art’s humor escaped him. I am reminded, too, of my dear friend and drinking companion, “Jungle Jim” Bramlet – gone. Anyway, when you visit the campus again, and I hope you will soon and often, please include the Wall on your itinerary. Spend a few minutes with those BRs who answered their country’s call to arms – and did it magnificently. You will be the better for it. It is the Soldier It is the soldier, not the reporter Who has given us freedom of the press. It is the soldier, not the poet, Who has given us freedom of speech. It is the soldier, not the campus organizers, Who have given us the freedom to demonstrate. It is the soldier – Who salutes the flag, Who serves underneath the flag, And whose coffin is draped by the flag – Who allows the protester to burn the flag. Amen. And I say again, Amen. God be with you. … Shalom. 58

’55 55

Read Hanmer

The Fourth Quarter Alumni Giving figures are in, and again, ’55 is among the leaders in both dollar amounts given and percent participation. Only one class in the post-1950B group (those classes with over 100 solicitable alumni) has a (slightly) higher percent participation: ’50B at 67.24% vs. ’55’s 66.45%. 1955 is fourth, in dollars given, at $650,537, behind the class of ’34, which had a special gift of over $2 million; ’58 with $944K; and ’63 with $658K. WELL done, guys and gals! Tom Tait alerted me to the “Second Annual Military Officers Association of America (MOAA) Wounded Warriors Golf Tournament,” which the MOAA’s George C. Marshall Chapter sponsored at the Lexington Golf and Country Club in August. All net proceeds from the tournament go to the “Wounded Warriors Program of Virginia.” I made the tactical decision to have the class of 1955 sponsor three holes in the names of our Brother Rats who died in combat: Walt Draeger, Bill Martin and Moon Osborne. In addition, sponsorships were provided in honor of Mary Tyler and Dave Barker. A number of Brother Rats participated in the tournament and also provided sponsorship donations. Tom reports that the tournament was a huge success: it grossed over $18,000 and, after expenses, should be able to send the Wounded Warriors Program approximately $13,000. As for our golfers, Bill Davidson and Tom Tait represented the class of ’55 very well. They didn’t win anything on the course, but Tom won a rain jacket in the raffle. Tom says it looks good but is too small (wonder why?). A Tait family member will be the recipient of the jacket. A snap of Tom with Jim Joyner ’67, Mike Bissell ’61 and three-war Marine Wally Fogo is nearby. Pete Haake has updated the very moving CD-based Tribute to our deceased Brother Rats that was featured at the 55th Reunion. If you wish to have a

copy of the Tribute, please contact Pete at 712 Quaker Road, Scottsville, NY 14546, 585/889-1958 or phaake1@ In a separate note, Pete said that he and Cathy spent two weeks in the Thousand Islands at their summer home on Grindstone Island. Grindstone is seven miles long, 2-1/2 miles wide at the widest and it takes a 3-1/2-mile boat ride to get to their camp. The St. Lawrence River is the widest river in North America at that very spot, six miles wide. Camp is a log house with four bedrooms and a bunk house. Pete says, “Stop in any time. Great fishing, swimming, hiking, hunting (in season). Call 315/686-1712 for reservations!” Pete has lots of pictures from the 55th and will work on them in the winter, hopefully to get them on the alumni Web site. When I noted in an e-mail that Lois and I were taking a cruise in the Baltic Sea in August, I found out that Ben and Connie Semmes and Tom and Kay Williamson had taken similar cruises, the Semmes this summer and the Williamsons in 1999. Tom put me on to a fascinating book, “The Return of the Prodigal Son,” which is based on the famous Rembrandt painting that hangs in the Hermitage in St. Petersburg. The book helped put the painting and the biblical story in perspective. Ben and Connie found Tallinn, Estonia, to be very interesting, even inspiring Ben to say he “would have liked to storm the (Tallinn) citadel in the Middle Ages.” No 8-inch howitzers to blast the walls in those days, Ben. Ben went on to observe that the restoration of the city of St. Petersburg, and the historical sites there, is amazing, considering the damage that the German siege of the city caused. It’s gratifying that the Russian people had the appreciation for and were able to save the art work. Ben also remarked on the evolution of cities built on hundreds of islands, incorporating numerous canals. That drives home the importance of water transport before the arrival of the automobile. Lois’ and my experience was much the same. Beautiful scenery and friendly people in all the countries. Fortunately, we hadn’t signed up for an excursion from St. Petersburg to Moscow, because VMI ALUMNI REVIEW

CLASS NOTES the fires in central Russia had rendered recently. They live about 35 miles apart niversary on the 18th of June and spent the air practically unbreatheable there. in the SC-Georgia border region. Tom the weekend at the Grand Hotel in Point We were struck by the antipathy that and Ray usually play golf once or twice Clear, AL, “acting like we were young our various tour guides had for their a year and go see the Keydets when they again.” Dick went on to say, “All is well countries’ recent pasts. In Estonia, there play in western South Carolina. Tom said here, the golf is better than ever and we was no use for either the Nazis or the (at the time of writing) it was too hot for are looking forward to the return of our Russians, with (unsurprisingly) similar golf, and since Ray is recovering from BRs to golf on the Gulf Coast again, like lack of regard for the Nazis at the other prostate problems, they just got together we did two years ago.” stops, especially in Rostock, Germany, to eat and chat. Dick observed that the Gulf oil spill is where the GDR regime was similarly Fielding Tyler has announced his rea national disaster for the local economy damned. All in all, a very interesting and tirement as executive director of the Old and especially for those involved in the enjoyable trip. Coast Guard Station in Virginia Beach, seafood industry. Hopefully, the spill MEDICAL UPDATES: after 20 years of service in that post. I will not kill all of the sea life before Jim Hart recently had a bout with what know he will be sorely missed at the CG it is cleaned up. The beaches are still appeared to be a tick-borne disease akin Station museum. Ya’ done good, Moose! beautiful, and the water is not as bad as to Rocky Mountain Fever. Infusion of Sue Hill also reports that she and Sam the publicity indicates. There are some antibiotics turned the tide, and Jim was are doing fine. They celebrated their real bargains on rental property along all released from the hospital in late June birthdays at Sandbridge with children of the Eastern Shore beaches. If anybody to resume his assaults on the computer. and grandchildren. Everybody had fun. comes to the beach, please let Dick and Thank you for the update, Phyllis. A quick note from Bill Nolley, to relate Evie know so that they can “meet and I, in turn, had an adverse reaction that he and Staige visited Norfolk for greet.” to a colonoscopy, with high fever and Jimmy Atkinson’s granddaughter’s wedWalter Reed sent along a note to say that disorientation. Fortunately, there was no ding. Sam Hill, Sam Segar, Happy Hog- he and Loli had just returned from Florida perforation of the colon, as was initially shire and Lou Drake ‘54, plus others, where they spent a month with both of feared, and three days at Walter Reed gave a breakfast Sunday morning for the their daughters and their daughters’ famiArmy Hospital, connected to copious wedding party and out-of-town guests. lies, plus about 15 other extended family tubes of various sorts, made it all go Bill and Staige had dinner with Charlie members. The Reeds were based in the away. I don’t relish going through that and True Luck. They are off to Paris Ramada Inn in Hollywood, FL, and spent again. with some grandchildren. Bill noted that most of their time checking out the beach Sue Hill reports that Happy Hogshire “Holy City” is red hot (this summer) and playgrounds and kid shows for the has been in the hospital for a month and with temperatures at 100 plus. four grandchildren. They also spent time at is headed to some rehabilitation. Among Dick Sutherland sent a note to keep us the Hollywood beach and the many really other things he had heart trouble and had up to date on the happenings in southern neat restaurants in the area and managed to three stents placed in an artery. (Editor’s Alabama. check out a few really nice condos. (Their Note: Sadly, Mr. Hogshire passed away Dick and Evie celebrated their 55th an- daughters are trying to get them to move after these notes were submitfrom their home in Califorted. His obituary will appear nia, which will not be easy.) in the Taps section of the next Walt reports that Loli is still Alumni Review, 2011-Issue 1.) in rather delicate health but Mort Bregman writes that is doing her best to improve he and Jean had to miss the through a combination of meds reunion due to Jean’s knee and low impact exercise. Walt replacement surgery, which says he hopes they can make had been well overdue. Jean the 60th Reunion. had a great surgeon and is now Marty Fisher reports that doing very well. Jean’s advice he is (again) president of the to anyone who is thinking York Lions Club. It’s his third about replacing a knee but is stint as president – they really reluctant: get the procedure love him! Marty says he hopes done posthaste. Now that the to see some BRs at the VMIworst is over, Jean is sorry William and Mary game. that she didn’t say yes to the Thththththat’s all folks. surgery years ago. Keep those notes, e-mails and Class of 1955: Attending the Wounded Warrior Golf TourOTHER NEWS: pictures coming. You, too, Tom Williamson said that nament in Lexington, Virginia, were, from left, Jim Joyner can be featured in these class ’67, Mike Bissell ’61, Tom Tait and Wally Fogo. he and Ray Collins had lunch notes! 2010-Issue 4




Richard M. Smith

To begin this next issue of my notes, I received a note from my old buddy John “Rocky” Stone telling me he had been in Mt. Pleasant, SC, at Trident Academy for his grandchildren’s Grandparents Day. He again ran into Don and Barbara Nyman, as he did last year. They got a full day “education,” he commented. Since he has been associated with the furniture industry most of his life, he told me Stanley Furniture Co. in his area was closing its doors in Dec. They are the last operating major manufacturer in this country and, like the others, are sending their work to China. Our lost BR Allen “Sharkey” Pate got in touch to thank me for keeping the ones out in “the hinterland” informed with what was happening to the class. He wanted an update on our deceased. He is still working for W.G. Yeates and Sons Construction in Biloxi, MS. He says he is not ready for

retirement yet and enjoys the challenging work with safety management. I heard from Jack and Ina Gee Pittman, who had been in contact with Betty and Jim Mann, that Bill Tolley was being released from Durham Hospital but, according to Else, still wasn’t doing very well. She planned on putting him in Centera Nurse and Rehabilitation facility in Hampton, VA. The address is 2230 Executive Dr., Hampton, VA 23666, Rm. 202, if anyone wants to get in touch. The Pittmans will be getting together with Ina Gee’s old cronies from U.N.C. at the beach soon. Fred Farthing was by to visit Bill the last weekend in June and called to tell me that Bill seemed to be improving since Fred last saw him in the nursing home. He was exercising and eating better and had a more positive attitude toward going home. Fred is still experiencing “hot flashes” since taking hormone shots as result of his prostate cancer treatment but continues to shoot good golf scores. I was sorry to learn from Marshall Mundy that Ann Schoen died after a series of illnesses had hospitalized her. I sent flowers from the class to Sonny.

Marshall informed me later that in addition to him and Monica attending were Wes and Betty Foster, Jim and Julie Brawner, and a large crowd of the Schoen’s friends from the Atlanta area. On July 18th, Honey and I attended a surprise birthday (75th) party for Motsy Foster given by her sons, daughters and grandchildren in Richmond. Many of her and Jimmy’s friends were there, including Betty and Jim Mann, Jo and Don Heslep, Betsy and Doug Gottwald, Bill Lamb, and Irene Myers. Honey and I traveled to Hampton during a rainy Sunday in July to visit Bill and Else Tolley in their apartment at the Chamberlain on Fort Monroe. They are getting used to being there, looking out over Chesapeake Bay in this refurbished old hotel. He has a difficult time moving about without the use of a wheelchair but is taking physical therapy to get his strength back. He still has difficulty speaking for any length of time as result of the tracheotomy. We got a tour of the whole facility which has many amenities to enjoy. Else has a full time job getting Bill to all his doctors’ appointments but seems to be handling it

Class of 1956 Class Agent Richard Smith traveled to Florida during winter 2010. While there, he had the chance to see some of his Brother Rats and family. Photos clockwise, from top, right: -Pannill and Claire Jones at dinner with several BRs and wives in Tampa. -Walt Tatum and Dick Smith playing golf at MacDill Air Force base in Tampa. -Dave and Ann Blair near their home in Punta Gorda.



CLASS NOTES well. We hope his progress will allow him to join us at the 55th Reunion next year. Since Les and Pat Belsha have begun playing golf on a regular basis, we have invited them to join Honey and me at the Petersburg CC on Aug. 28th for golf and dinner. They also are planning to go with us back to Pipestem State Park in early Oct. for several days of golf when the fall foliage is at its peak in WV. As of June 30, 2010, our class had made gifts to VMI totaling $170,000 from 57% of our solicitable alumni. We still rank near the bottom for classes of the 1950s. I received an email from Ken McDonald recently filling me in on some things that he feels strongly about, and I appreciate anyone’s comments regarding their likes and dislikes. It helps to make me more aware of what I send out to you BRs. He has some physical issues, just like most of us, which we would like to do away with. Ken is in contact with quite a few of the guys in his vicinity: Hop Graham, Bill Tolley, John Machen, Pete Jennette, Tom Undercoffer, Fred Farthing and Bruce Fowler. Bob Brickner called to let me know he was concerned about what I had put in the last Review after hearing from Betty and Jim Mann. He had not received his copy, so I brought him up to date on my comments. We also talked about our families and what the younger ones were doing. He continues to drum on the issue that we need to work harder at staying in shape. I told him I agreed, but it was hard to turn down some of Honey’s “home cooking.” I apologize for not having more to report or pictures this time, but I’ll do better as the weather gets cooler. Yours in the “Spirit” … Dick


Clayton M. Thomas III

Now in August, the torrid days of June and July are behind us. The weather continues to be hot, but the evenings are longer, and the days will cool down in a month or two. Recently, we received the latest figures from Annual Giving. According to Pat Webb, vice president of Annual and Reunion Giving, our alumni demonstrated 2010-Issue 4

true devotion to VMI in FY 2010. 4,490 alumni made a gift, which amounts to a 34% participation rate. Our class distinguished itself with a 60.38% rate. We had 99 donors with 96 Brother Rats and three widows contributing. The widows are Patti Hammond, Betty Mixson and Lind Vaughan Wright. Thanks to Jay Musser, “The Rain Maker,” his e-mails notified a large segment of the class about my by-pass surgery, and the Brother Rats responded with a deluge of notes, cards, letters and phone calls wishing a speedy recovery. Thank you, Brother and Sister Rats, for your great encouragement. Dawn and I are both very grateful. Tom Ayres phoned from Bridgewater, VA. He had just received the Alumni Review and wanted to hear how I was mending. He had his by-pass just five days after mine while in Clearwater, FL, and is doing fine. He says he feels better than he has felt in years. Phyllis and he return to Florida every November through April, and we plan to get together in the Tampa area this year. J.J. Kirshmier is another Brother Rat who called after reading the class notes in the Alumni Review. Living in Tidewater, VA, he receives the magazine several days before we do in Florida. J.J. is feeling poorly but will continue to return to Winter Haven every fall. Russ Davis, our class president, called often, talking with Dawn and keeping up with my progress. Don Jamison called Russ and asked how I was doing. Don’s celebration at VMI was spectacular. Russ had never seen such an outpouring of love, appreciation and admiration, all mixed with good humor. There was a strong turnout from the class of 1957, and Dawn and I wish we were there also. Recently, Katie and Ken Dickinson left Merritt Island for Roscoe, SD, and we were unable to get together before they departed. Their trip in July to Wisconsin was exciting, as they ran into a flood and spent 12 hours waiting at the airport. We will see them in January. Clint Glover went through by-pass surgery in November 2006 and found the rehab beneficial. He is fine now, and Belkis and he are enjoying life in Antioch, IL. Frank Holmes’ birthdate on our birthday list was 12 July. He wrote back informing

me that the correct date is 7 Dec., Pearl Harbor Day. Frank roomed with Bill Dick and was surprised to learn of W.W. Dick’s death. I asked Frank if he knew Bill was at Pearl Harbor when the Japs attacked, and did he remember anything Bill might have told him. Frank said that Bill told him that during the air raid, Bill’s mother had him and his brother get under the bed in their quarters at Schofield Barracks. That was all Frank could remember. It has been a long time. In May, Ruth Smith wrote wonderful news about “The Great White Owl.” Ron Kay’s throat tube was removed permanently, and he is eating regular food again. He is up in his wheelchair and uses his walker. He enjoys a 100-ft. “stroll.” This is the first time in years Ron had walked. He wears his VMI class ring again, as he weighs 150 pounds, up from 118. He is happy to be alive. He can talk on the telephone, as his voice is back due to speech therapy. He even enjoys a Guiness daily. Lucy McCormack reveals that Rod had triple by-pass surgery immediately after our 40th Reunion in 1997. He spent three months sleeping in his Lazy Boy chair all night, as he couldn’t stand lying flat. Mo and Cindy Levine in Westminster, CO, are waiting for their third grandchild to be born in Chicago any day. Also, they plan a trip to Scandinavia in the summer, and in the fall, they will bike tour somewhere in the states. Carroll Mason called from ManakinSabot, VA. Darrel and he continue to travel, and on their last trip to New York City, they took in a Broadway show and greatly enjoyed the musical “Mary Poppins.” I grew up reading P.L. Travers’ books. George Sydnor sent pictures from the VMI-VPI baseball game of 27 April 2010. Our rebuilt stands are a vast improvement. Unfortunately, the Hokies won 9-2. With George were Brother Rats Lynn Avis, Mad Dog Bolling and a friend. Ann Wilson traveled to Idaho on Memorial Day, joining Pete’s sons and family and her sons and family. They placed Pete’s ashes in the Wilson family plot next to his father and his brother. Following the burial, they all went fishing. Pete loved to fish, and Ann knows he’ll be watching as they cast their lines into beautiful Lake Coeur d’Alene. 61

CLASS NOTES In early August, we received a letter from Larry Wise with a check for VMI, which I forwarded to the VMI Foundation. This makes Larry one of the first donors for Annual Giving in Fiscal Year 2011. After living for many years in the Pacific Northwest, Bob and Ann Vail moved back east to Waynesboro, VA. We were looking forward to seeing them on one of our trips to Lexington. Unfortunately, Ann wrote the sad news that Bob passed away on 13 Feb. 2010. He went in for back surgery which was successful, but his blood count was low, so a transfusion was in order. He had a rare reaction to the blood which damaged his lungs severely and in spite of two and a half weeks in intensive care, Bob failed to recover. Ann is coping with this new, strange life and misses him terribly. She enclosed a copy of his obituary which I will send to VMI. It is always a sad day when we lose a Brother Rat.

Wes Roberts

’58 Attention in Barracks: The class agent is having difficulty maintaining contact with the following BRs. Their e-mails continue to bounce back as non-deliverable. Note Bono: This applies to e-mails sent by the Institute in my name, as well as my personal e-mails to you. BRs, this is your responsibility; when you change e-mail addresses, please be diligent in informing me. Send me an e-mail with your current e-mail address before you pop the next beer. You are: Dave Martin, Al Neuburger, Sam Harrison, Duke Johnston, John Drake and Dick Culver. Security Alert: The class agent has been notified, since the last issue of the AR, that he is subject of a Mafia contract on his life. The threat deals with my claim of having caught a record rainbow trout in the South River. The failure on my part to have “certified” my statement left me open for this threat, which will be personally handled … and you thought this was an easy job! Bill Gee, who is generous with his time 62

in assisting me with this column, sent an e-mail link to a video of the Ford Model T assembly plant. He also sent it to Charlie Hayes, who, in return, related stories of his having worked in the Ford assembly plant in Norfolk, VA, during the summers of 1953-59. Charlie, in reply, noted that our late BR Bruce Baker worked in a Chrysler plant doing similar work. Charlie said that he and Bruce were the only cadets who came back from summer break smiling, as they considered VMI a breeze compared to working in these plants. Charlie added that the plants lacked air conditioning and other amenities. (We all know that Charlie, no doubt, added to that “hot air.”) Charlie was appreciative of the wages he earned each summer, as he was able to pay for a year’s schooling with three months of summer work. Ewing Best reports that she is going to be a grandmom for the first time. Ewing and Charlie’s only son, Michael, and wife Morgan are expecting their first child in March. Ewing states, “I’m a little sad that Charlie can’t be here with us, but I know he is watching over them with a huge smile on his face.” BR Paul Johnson reports that he is still working at the V.A. in Houston. He hopes to go on a “mule hunt” in Colorado in November. Paul has seen Jack and Lynn Boze frequently and hopes to visit Jim and Peggy Poteet in Hunt, TX. Gary Harris was just inducted into The Explorers Club (NYC) as a Member National-09. This organization has been working with a similar group from Cusco, Peru, seeking a rumored lost Inca city in the western slopes of the Andes Mountains. Gary states this search has been going on for the last 12 years in difficult, unmapped territory. BR Tony Lash sent a picture of “Trouble, Trouble and More Trouble.” Tony is shown with two VMI graduates, Tim Joyce ’00 and Shawn Joyce ’02, who are brothers and both Marines. The picture was taken by their mother, Isabel Joyce, in 2002 at a Celebrate South Weekend in Richmond. Who but Tony could find “More Trouble”? Our New Jersey transplant, Dave Pai, reports from Davidson, NC, that he and Anna saw Brook and Linda Doggett in April when they were in the area visit-

ing their daughter, Leanne. Dave also reports that in March he had to undergo a heart angioplasty and two subsequent shock treatments to get his “ticker” ticking properly again. Currently, the Pais are in Oregon visiting their son, Mike, and family. Dave reports that he just loves the Pacific Northwest weather. “Here is some news from the Paulls:” Jerry reports that he and Karen, along with Bill and Betty Dunn, attended the Potomac River Chapter VMI New Market Day Dinner at the Army-Navy Club in Washington, D.C. Jerry also attended the VMI International Affairs Working Group at the Army-Navy Club. The speaker was Armaud de Borchgrave, former correspondent for Newsweek and editor-in-chief of The Washington Times. Jerry and Karen are going on a “Roads Scholar” (formerly Elderhostel) trip to Seattle, WA; Victoria, BC; and the San Juan Islands later this summer. Ted Henry reports from SC that he and Becky are “just pretty much hanging around the house.” They did go to Myrtle Beach for a week, although they enjoy it more later in the year when there aren’t so many people there. They will be traveling to Torremolinos, Spain, in September; they will spend two weeks in an apartment right on the Mediterranean and may also make a side trip to Tangiers, Morocco. The Henrys had spent time in this part of Andalusia several years ago and really enjoyed the slower pace of living. Now, that’s living! Jim Beamer reports that four Instituterelated Beamers attended the Annual Beamer Family Reunion at Fancy Gap, VA, on Aug. 7. The four were Carter Beamer ’41, Jim Beamer, Don Jones ’67 and Wilson Beamer ’74. The Beamers first settled the Beamer Knob area in the mid 1700s. Clayton Beamer, class of 1929, was the first Beamer to graduate from VMI. We are saddened to report that Carter Beamer’s wife and Wilson Beamer’s mother, Madeline, died at age 92 on Aug. 9. Brother Rats, it is a difficult matter to address, but nonetheless, we need to speak to it. I refer to the sudden passing of Allene Rice, wife of our BR Darrell, on July 18, 2010. We offer our heartfelt condolences, as simple as they may be. Our BR Onza Hyatt and his wife, Becky, attended the VMI ALUMNI REVIEW

CLASS NOTES fered so many maladies, that we ought to services in Petersburg and represented Shep Shepard open our own infirmary! Maybe Doc Malour class. Such passings are beginning to lory will head up the staff.) If Tony feels occur more frequently among our ranks. well enough, he and Ann will take a St. To quote Onza, “We need to comfort one Lawrence Riverway cruise later this year. another while we can.” He went on to Over the past months, I have enjoyed say, “I second the notion, Wes, that you This quarter was not kind to the Stonespeaking telephonically with these BRs (to conveyed in my birthday card … we are wall Class; we lost two BRs: Jerry Borst name a few): Ron Swirk, Bill Holland, in our golden age and maybe short for this and Dick Hein. Darlene said she and Jerry world.” Onza invites any BRs passing near Jim Cowan (who had just completed stringing mucho acres of barbed wire Hopewell to come and visit. were bicycling and had just finished eating fence and had his feet up on the porch rail Our BR Gene “Hard Luck” Grayson ice cream at a rest stop when she looked enjoying a scotch), Brooke Doggett, Moon around and saw Jerry was having trouble. chimed in from Radford concerning his Menefee, Drew Troxler and Frank Nor55th High School Picnic. He said Bob She thought he was adjusting his helmet, but vell. Through these conversations, I obtain he suddenly fell to the ground. By the time Buckland came in from Frederick, MD, information interesting to the class as well and Walter Leach arrived on his motorshe got to him, he was gone – a massive as to myself. Please don’t think you have cycle. (Where the heck is Radford, VA, heart attack. Jerry was such a genuinely nice nothing of interest to share, as I am always guy – quiet but self assured, as he displayed anyhow?!) Gene, who casts himself as the in need of “fodder” for the Review. World’s Best Trout Fisherman, “popped” so many times on the football field. Our BR Bill Harshaw and wife Carolyn an Achilles tendon, eliminating him from thoughts and prayers are with Darlene any serious trout fishing. (Good try, buddy. spent a memorable two weeks in Machu and his two sons, Alan and Roger. After Pichu, Peru, in April. Says Bill, “We “Better luck next time.”) receiving word about Jerry, I got a call from To continue the GIM list, which seems to traveled with Overseas Adventure Trail. Colleen Waggoner, Richard’s wife. Richard They never have more than 15 persons per grow too long too often, I report to those had suffered with Alzheimer’s for the past group. Our first venture with them was a who have not gotten the word that BR nine years and was confined to a nursing mind-boggling trip through Egypt, two Hull Negley is recovering from surgery to home when he passed away in December. drain a cyst on one of his kidneys. His able years ago, when we traveled with John and Colleen visited him every day, and occasionBetty St. George ’57.” “nurse,” Judy, is literally keeping him on ally, he would recall something about VMI To repeat Onza’s adage, “We are in our the road to recovery, as they left for their and his BRs. He wanted very badly to attend golden age” and find ourselves closer than Canadian quarters as soon as the doctor the 50th Reunion but unfortunately was not allowed it. By last report, Hull was making ever in spirit to one another. Stay in good well enough. We’ll miss Richard and will a good recovery, and we’ll be hearing from health. Keep the Spirit. remember his family in our prayers. God’s Blessings … Wes him again soon Ann and I began this quarter with a Not to be outdone, BR Tony memorable 5,500-mile road Williams – former Chief of the trip all over the eastern GIM Riders when he and Gene seaboard, visiting friends, Grayson, as regimental color relatives and BRs. Because sergeants, mustered the halt, lame class notes pages and pictures and blind and marched them to are limited, I sent a copy of the post hospital – has apparently our exploits by e-mail to put some of those “talents” to those BRs on my list, but for practical use. Tony reports that those who are not on the list, he was having minor heart pain here is a summary of our trip. and weakness and decided to go We visited family in Atlanta; in for a checkup. That “checkup” went on to Fort Campbell, resulted in a seven-day hospital KY, where we visited the first stay and placement of a stint in noncommissioned officer I one of his coronary arteries. One met when I joined the Army lung was also found to be partially in 1959; and then to Chuck collapsed; that problem is being and Margo Cotton in addressed with medication adjustFrankfurt, KY. The Cottons ments. But wait, Tony’s not done are doing great, and Chuck with his GIM report yet. In April, has his Parkinson’s well in Tony underwent successful radiahand. Margo arranged a tion treatment for prostate cancer, dinner with Bill and Susie Class of 1958: Tim Joyce ’00, Tony Lash and Shawn and in June he passed a kidney Kirkland in a small bistro Joyce ’02. stone! (Tony, our class has sufoutside of Frankfurt. Bill


2010-Issue 4


CLASS NOTES looked great and shamed us all by wearing his ’59 class sweater that fit him perfectly. Shortly thereafter, Ann and I headed for Niagara Falls, but on the way, we stopped by Columbus, OH, to have lunch with Pete McWane. Pete had just returned from a trip to South America, including the Falkland Islands. When Pete was in Stanley, he asked about the British officer who called London from a pay phone during the invasion of the Falklands. Subsequently, he met Michele Binnie, the young girl who answered the phone. The story was that after the British victory at Goose Green/Darwin, the parachute regiment needed to continue pushing toward Stanley. They were told by the Darwin manager that the telephone line might still be operable between a house at Swan Inlet and the settlement of Fitzroy. John Crosland, the CO, cranked the phone handle at Swan Inlet, not really expecting any result. However, the line was still intact, and the telephone at Fitzroy was answered by Michele, the 13-year-old daughter of the city manager. She called her father, Ron, who spoke to the British officer and told them the Argentines were gone. Knowing that the area was clear, the parachute regiment was able to safely move forward to Fitzroy. A great story made even better when recited by Pete. We continued on to Niagara Falls where we spent a wonderful three days and then to Tarrytown, NY, where we met Bud and Susan Mease for the last day of his USMA Class of ’60 50th Class Reunion. It was fun seeing many old friends with whom we had served over the years. Coincidentally, five of us there had lived on the same street in Hawaii back in 1961. We visited West Point and then headed off to

Class of 1959 Photos from top, right: – Terry and Harry MacGregor and their son, Mark, got advice from Nancy Wood on what to see in Las Vegas. – Pete McWane was in The Falkland Islands on the anniversary of the Argentinean invasion where he met Michele Binnie. – Mel and Jean Anderson with Bob Haines and his girlfriend, Monique Harnetty, enjoying a wine break during their trip through Spain and Portugal. – Ann and Shep Shepard celebrated their 50th Wedding Anniversary with their whole family at Hilton Head, South Carolina. Photo below: “The Reverent and The Bear toured the Botanical Gardens of Memphis trying to absorb some culture,” said Class Agent Shep Shepard.



CLASS NOTES CT for a few days to visit relatives. Because of some problems back in Utah, Bud and Sue flew home, while Ann and I continued on to Rockland, ME, where we met Joel Strunk, Jud Strunk’s youngest son. Joel, a tuna fisherman by day and a scriptwriter by night, planned to take us out on his fishing boat, but just as we got it in the water, we discovered a hydraulic leak. It didn’t slow us down; we spent the day on a land tour of the surrounding area, and in the evening we met his family for supper. Joel is a clone of Jud; at times I thought I was talking to our BR. In the morning, we drove to Lake Weld where we joined Jud’s widow, Marti, her husband, Sturgis, and Jud and Marti’s son, Rory. Rory had part of his family with him, daughters Scarlett and Tatum and son Jud III. Rory had to leave and get back to work as a TV producer in Portland, so after he left, we jumped into Sturgis’ car and drove up to Sugarloaf Mountain to meet Jud’s third son, Jeff, and his family. Jeff inherited Jud’s home – a four-story, octagonal log cabin. Jeff hasn’t decided yet whether it was a curse or a blessing – lots of maintenance. Jeff has two talented children. Mason, his son, has taken up the mandolin, piano and guitar and can perform all the G-rated songs that Jud ever sang. Songs like “She’s Got the Biggest Parakeets in Town” are off-limits until he’s 18. Besides working on the cabin, Jeff is in partnership with Sean Westcott, the Olympic snowboard gold medal winner. They own a bar and club at the foot of Sugarloaf Mountain. It was great seeing the Strunk family, but we had to get on our way. Our next stop was DE where we made our way to Rehoboth Beach to visit with Hank “Sonny” Thomas. Unfortunately, Sonny was in the V.A. hospital with some very serious health problems. After returning home, I contacted him and found he has been suffering from cancer for years, and he spends most of his time these days visiting various hospitals. Sonny appreciates all the cards and letters he receives from his BRs. We then traveled to Virginia Beach to visit our son, Phil ’83, and his family. While there, we visited with Jim and Bet Vermillion and spent the morning at “Old Comfort.” We were surprised when they told us that their beautiful home is up for sale; seems their children have changed the center of mass, and Charlottesville is better suited for all of 2010-Issue 4

them. Later that day, we met Harlee Pate at his historic home in downtown Norfolk and were again shocked to find it was also up for sale. We had a great visit with Bet, Jim and Harlee but were disappointed that we didn’t get to see Barbara. Barbara was working hard, ensuring that all of us continue to receive our monthly Social Security checks; thanks, Barbara. Next, we headed down I-81 to Dublin and spent some time with Dick and Linda Phillippi. We met them at their beautiful lake house, and after a few hours of telling war stories, we joined Dick and Linda and 50 of their closest friends for dinner; not one of them went to VMI! We had a great evening. We spent the night at the lake and on the way out of town the next morning, stopped by to visit their home in Wytheville. What a beautiful home, built in the middle of 300 acres on top of a hill, just off the interstate. We left Wytheville and headed for Crossville, TN. We noticed that we would be passing Kingsport, TN – the home of George and Marie O’Neill – so we decided to stop and say hello. We caught them a little off guard, and Marie had to throw a lot of stuff in the closet, but we managed an hour visit before we got back on the road. George and Marie are about to celebrate their 50th wedding anniversary. We proceeded on to TN where we joined my brother and his wife for three days of golf and fine dining. Playing mountain courses put quite a strain on me, but I survived and made it to Tallahassee, where we stopped to visit Phil and Betty Sellers. They wanted to play a round of golf, but after those mountain courses, I was in no condition to play. So, they relented and took us for a tour of Tallahassee and the surrounding area. We spent a delightful evening having supper with a young man who just completed his Rat year at VMI. Were we ever that young? It was great, but the ladies would not let us strain the Rat. We packed up the next morning, and after three and a half weeks and 5,500 miles, we headed home. Our sincere thanks to our BRs, their spouses and families who were so kind to us. We truly appreciated your hospitality. Max Guggenheimer recently attended the Retired Military Golf Classic at Myrtle Beach, SC. There were about 1,000 participants there, and Max says they were all treated special. Max suggests that this

might be a great opportunity for the retired military in our class to get together for a mini reunion. If you’re interested, drop me a line. Gordo Keiser still works at the Marine Corps Warfighting Lab where he enjoys working with Marines more every day. Gloria continues to put up with his foolishness as they enjoy life and the success of their offspring. Son, Duane, is the artist who conceived the online “painting-a-day” movement that was featured in USA Today several years ago. Son, John, a former F-14 aviator, flies for Cathay Pacific Airlines, and daughter, Paige, is a children’s book illustrator whose latest work was Wow! It’s a Cow! Both are extremely proud of their kids’ accomplishments. Gordo stays in touch with his old roomy, Tommy Klemenko, and hopes to join classmates in Lexington for a football game or two this fall. Noland and Mary Pipes recently hopped aboard a riverboat in Amsterdam and cruised to Budapest, where they visited beautiful and historic spots along the way. Noland’s health is much better, and Mary had a nerve block she hopes will relieve her persistent back pain. Bill and Susie Kirkland are doing great. On their way home from the great evening we spent with them while visiting KY, Susie told Bill that we must be a close class to have remembered as much as we talked about. I agree, but what Susie doesn’t realize is that we make up a lot of it as we go along, or at least we embellish stories; a little. When Bill heard about Marilyn Southard’s condition, he sent a Healing Blanket to her from his church group. Lee called Bill and thanked him for such an appropriate gift; it was the first time they had talked in 50 years. They caught up on a lot of things. Bill and Susie will be going out west to visit the national parks soon. They plan to spend a couple of days in Las Vegas enjoying the shows and making their fortune. We wish them the best of luck. Bill and Connie Nebraska are planning another family reunion in the Pocono Mountains where they celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary last year. Their two boys and their families, as well as Bill and Connie, had so much fun, it’s become an annual event. Bill and Connie ache for the Southard family. They pray for Marilyn, Lee and their family who will need strength and faith to get through this. Bill feels a special bond 65

CLASS NOTES with Lee, since he was instrumental in getting Bill’s brother into the Cleveland Clinic for a lung transplant. Lee didn’t hesitate to help; a true life example of the BR philosophy in action. Ken Bradford admits that he has not kept in touch with the Institute and his BRs for many years. He wasn’t going to attend the 50th reunion, but Cec Young, in his own inimitable way, said, “Aw, Kenny, let’s just go together and forget the old crap.” Cecil died unexpectedly, and Ken lost heart for going. After VMI, Ken went to grad school at UNC, got a Ph. D. in English, taught at VMI, JMU and UNC, became the state English supervisor for the Virginia Department of Education, retired, unretired and did school consulting, retired again, then unretired again and has been teaching English, economics and government to grades 7-12 at the local Orthodox Jewish school; Cec really got a kick out of that! Ken’s preparing to retire again but not totally; he’ll be teaching a couple of adjunct college classes somewhere around Richmond. Ken, his wife, Beth, and their menagerie spend summers in their cottage on a little island off the coast of New Brunswick, Canada. Beth paints and teaches online, while Ken vegetates and plays golf. Nowell and Sallie Loop were inactive earlier this year, but when school ended, the grandkids kept them hopping with concerts, recitals and awards assemblies. Since then, they’ve traveled to ID and WA to visit friends and to Victoria Island, BC, to visit the “gardens.” Nowell met a St. Gertrude grad who was friends with the Dreelin’s and my wife, Ann, also a St. Gertrude’s alumnus. They shared stories about summers on Gwynn’s Island but decided not to go into too many details. That’s the same story I get from Ann whenever Gwynn’s Island is brought up. Someday I might get “The rest of the story!” John and Teddi Martin enjoyed a European River Cruise on the Danube, cruising from Passau, GE, to Budapest, HU – a trip to commemorate their 35th wedding anniversary. Stops included Salzburg, Melk, Vienna and Budapest. Melk was their favorite, with a beautiful and stunning 900-year-old Benedictine abbey. Teddi enjoyed it so much that she renewed John’s lease; he’s now good for 36! They thought that taking the trip in July would help them escape the summer’s heat in VA, but alas, no such luck; it was well 66

over 90 degrees the entire trip. John ran into Billy and Sue Kornegay at the Powhatan County monthly meeting of the WWII roundtable, founded by Billy. They were still basking in the glow of their grandson’s accomplishments and his honor as the VMI 2010 class valedictorian. He’s headed for med school at Virginia Tech’s new school of osteopathy. Mel and Jean Anderson, Bob Haines and his girlfriend, Monique Harnetty, recently completed a trip to Spain and Portugal. They visited many beautiful places, but Palacious Nozaies in Alhambra, Granada, was one of their favorites. They flew into Madrid where they spent a few days, then took the high-speed train to Barcelona, where they rented a car, drove to Gibraltar, swung over to Portugal and back to Madrid, from where they flew home. Spence Tucker flew to Seoul as a guest of the Korea Institute for Defense Analyses. He gave a presentation at a symposium treating the 60th anniversary of the start of the Korean War. He had a fantastic time and was amazed at what the Koreans have accomplished. Agnes Inge Carter took two grandchildren to London for spring break and had a great time. Daughter, Owen, had a son, their 12th grandchild – an even number of boys and girls. Agnes assures us that at least six will go to VMI. She and Charlie will spend three weeks in South Africa this summer. Friends who live there planned the perfect “insider” tour: Cape Town, Durban and the Indian Ocean. Agnes says, “Are we over the moon? YES!” Royall and Geri Geis “house swapped” with an American who is married to a Scot and must return to the U.S. each year to retain his citizenship. They occupied his Edinburg penthouse which overlooks the ocean. Having never been to Ireland, Geri planned a side trip with reservations in many castles along the way. Rusty Loth went to Memphis to visit his daughter, Laura, a French professor at Rhodes College. The Reverent Noland Pipes introduced Rusty to a little culture by taking him to the Botanical Gardens, thinking beauty and culture would bring a long needed change to the Bear – alas, to no avail. Noland and Mary were wonderful hosts, and Rusty and Laura greatly appreciated their hospitality. On the return drive to Richmond,

Rusty stopped by Cookeville, TN, where he had lunch with Neils Anderson who, he reports, is doing great. George O’Neill wants it known that he feels the class of ’59 could have coined the phrase “Fair and Balanced” in all ways, especially when referring to the fairer sex. That said, George continues to pursue that ideal. Recently, he apparently misrepresented Sarah True’s true prenuptial value when he disparagingly wrote, and I unwittingly reported, that Jim True lured her into marriage at a young and very tender age by the promise of an ice cream cone. Sarah was quick to respond that she was worth so much more than that; it was really a banana split ... a whole ’nother plateau of worthfulness. George stands humbled and corrected! Gold Bags True knows how to wow the ladies. Terry and Harry MacGregor stopped by Las Vegas on their way to their son’s wedding in Sedona, AZ, and visited Larry and Nancy Wood. Another of Terry’s and Harry’s sons, Mark, joined them, and they had a great, mini family reunion visiting all the hotspots. Expert advice was provided by Larry and Nancy, longtime residents of Las Vegas – dinner and water ballet at the Bellagio and the Phoenician to watch the gondolas weave their way through the hotel complex. Larry and Harry bored everyone to death telling “Old Corps” stories, but they were amazed at how much they agreed on the details. Larry retired from teaching, after 31 years in the Clark County School District. The NJROTC unit was on parade, with Larry as the reviewing officer, giving him a perfect send-off. Bruce and Norma Mackenzie were walking out the door on their way to Ottawa, Ontario, when this article was submitted. They planned to stop in Altoona, PA, to visit Nevins Wilburn. Bruce Googled Altoona; he found it is in the middle of nowhere and is famous for absolutely nothing. They also plan to visit Wolfe Island, Ontario, a beautiful island between the U.S.A. and Canada, great for birding. Once in Ottawa, they will board a canal boat and travel to Kingston, down the Rideau Canal, passing through 23 locks in five days. Bud and Denyse Kramer traveled to Richmond for Bud’s 55th Benedictine reunion. They had a great turnout: 20 from Benedictine and 15 from St Gertrude’s. They talked about the old times; however, they could hardly recall VMI ALUMNI REVIEW

CLASS NOTES things that happened that long ago. Following so proud of our four children and their spouses L. Edward Tolley the reunion, Bud and Denyse hopped aboard and our 10 grandchildren and their many actheir motor home and visited the surrounding complishments. We are about to board the area, where they spent three weeks visiting plane and fly to Branson, MO, where we will historical sites at Yorktown, Jamestown and spend the week golfing, dining and attending Williamsburg. Before returning to Florida, shows with Chuck and Margo Cotton. In the Now that we have truly attained the they visited the Pamunkey Indian Reservation. meantime, keep those cards and letters coming status of “The Old Corps,” it is appropriate Bud’s grandmother, a full-blooded Indian, was in. Yours in the Spirit … Shep to look across the years – wow!, born there – her father being the the decades – and to contemplate chief. Bud and Denyse have had just what value I gained from their cancer encounters. Bud’s sismy years at the Institute with ter, Betty, passed away earlier this that loosey-goosey gang of teenyear after a long fight with cancer, agers, the pride of the classes of and their daughter-law, Crystal, is ’56, who had problems, at times, still fighting for her life. Crystal getting off on the left foot. At could use your prayers. our 50th Reunion, it was delightNell Mohn, the project manager ful hearing, repetitively, and for the Jud Strunk presentation, in some cases, entertainingly visited the Strunk family and embellished, many of the memomany of Jud’s friends in Maine. ries of Barracks and classroom It was a very productive visit. She events. Smiles were in abunhas put together a comprehensive dance, although age has inflicted “dossier” on Jud – enough so she most of us with pain well hidden is ready to present it to her boss and dutifully attended, through and those who have been funding strict attention to the tablets and the project. Once completed, she elixirs prescribed. Personal acwill have a better idea about what Photo above: Jack Horgan, Jimbo Smith and complishment stories were hard will happen next and if and when Jim O’Dell. Photo middle: Bolling Williamson, to come by and, when told, came they might be able to schedule Jon Parnell, Dan Marston and Bill Elliott. from the wife as a reflection on a show. Photo bottom: Andy Wise, Jack Willard and Jim O’Dell. the man she loved and respected Ann and I have had a busy but since their day of marriage. The exciting quarter. After returning value gained could be read by from our long but memorable looking into the eyes of men of road trip, we joined Anne and ’60. Without words written nor Spider Allison ’56, Betsy and spoken, it was easily discernable Paul Bark ’56, Cathie and Bob from the eyes that the early risSpurrier ’58 and Ru and Tom ing, pressure-packed schedNance ’58 for the U.S. Army ule, more-than-a-load load of Birthday Ball at the Indian River work to do, variety of personal Colony Club. It was awesome to interfaces, successes and disapsee all the old grunts, swabbies, pointments, all the daily routine gyreens and coasties prancing molded each Brother Rat into around wearing awards and meda physically strong, mentally als from wars that most young awake and honorably straight people know nothing about. It man. I am so proud to be a was a great evening, and we Brother Rat of the class of ’60. thank our fellow VMI graduJimbo and Ruth Smith are ates for including us. Our next big adventure was celebrating sponsoring a golf tournament our 50th wedding anniversary. on the 10th of Aug. as a fund We gathered our whole family raiser for the purchase of mediin Hilton Head, SC, for a week cal equipment that they will use of reminiscing, golf, good food as they travel to the Dominican and togetherness. The week was Republic where they volunperfect, and we could not have teer with the Medical Ministry asked for anything better. We are International to provide medical,


Class of 1960

2010-Issue 4


CLASS NOTES surgical and dental care for the poor. Jimbo and Ruth started with this endeavor back in 2008 and last year had their first golfing fund raiser, netting $18,000, which was used to purchase four cardiac monitors, an ophthalmologic tonometer, CO2 anesthesia analyzer, OR suction machine, a 25-quart sterilizer and new surgical instruments. Thanks, Jimbo and Ruth, for such a noble thing to do. Those who may want to donate to this worthy cause should get in touch at Jimbo at Jim Savage and Sam Horner are scheduled to be in Jimbo Smith’s tournament. Otis Pool, Jim O’Dell and Joe Sisler must be in jail, otherwise why wouldn’t they be there? By way of Hap Miller, Jim Pittman says that the 50th Reunion DVD he is constructing will be available in the fall. He is sorting through the numerous photos and “has had some learning experiences” making it perfect. Jim and Hap were instrumental in getting the 50th Reunion booklet arranged after Peanuts Elliott gathered the info. I have several booklets available, and I can get more for those who might like to have one (this will require a donation to the Alumni Association). And speaking of the Alumni Association, last year we had nearly 60% participation of BRs donating to the VMIAA that did not factor special donations to the Class of ’60 Reunion Fund. Remember, it is not so much how much you donate – it’s the fact that you did contribute something. My goal this year is to get at least 75% participation. It is contagious; trust me. Thanks so much, men. Alex Smith has arisen from the caverns of New York City! He sent me a note that the movie “Mardi Gras” had aired on Memorial Day and would be on again on June 13. I didn’t get to see it then but have seen it since. He also sent a picture of Christine Carere when she was at the Institute for the movie. On her right was Mark Smith’59, and on the left was Howard Sprinkle ’59. Sadly, Ms. Carere passed away in 2008 at age 78. Ah, the memories. Jim Greathead, Ed Marquette, John Moore, Buddy Frith, Ed and Linda Duncan, Sam Horner, and Tom Beavers have sent me numerous e-mails that are really good patriotic, religious or moral subjects. In these times when the fabric 68

of America is being unraveled by people who are either just plain dumb or who have an agenda aimed at the destruction of America, it reminds me more of the foundation of instruction at VMI. Guy Smith e-mailed me to congratulate the Reunion Committee on a great job and to advise that he had recently visited Peaks of Otter on his way to Giles County. The trip was a winner, until he neared Hokie country, where the fuzz picked him up for exceeding the speed limit. I’m sure the officer must have been an old turkey farmer and recognized the VMI sticker with blood in his eye. The judge wasn’t of the Ruth Bader Ginsberg ilk, and he only has to go to driver’s ed classes. Hope he passes. Dick Murphy sent me a note to say that he and Mary Anne ran into Doc Mallory in Chicago’s O’Hare Airport as they returned from a trip to California’s Gold Coast. Doc was on his way back to Greensboro, NC, where he is helping a new company get settled in the furniture making industry. Doc had expressed his regrets at not being able to make the 50th but will be engaged in NC until? Don and Liz Duncan called recently, just checking in. Both are in better shape than in the recent past. Don is enjoying being back into more engineering with Dominion Power (maybe that’s why my stock is up to a 52-month high). Don says that when he’s not working, he is golfing, and that’s fine by Liz. Their son, Kevin, and two daughters, Christie and Heather, are all on the treadmill of working and raising grandchildren. My apologies for not having names under the pictures included in the last Review. Bo Bowles and Neal Callaham are identified. To the right in ranks for the parade are: left to right, Bob Graves, Ed Davis, George Miller, Bill Knowles and Bill Overman. In the middle photo, left side, are: Bo Bowles, Sam Horner, Charlie Gehring and Suzanne O’Dell; seated is Mike Ondos. The center photo is class president, Roy Quinn. Right is Phil Hamric (cowboy hat). Bottom left are Joe Sisler and Don Webb. Center are Joe Stewart and Carl Benner. And you know Ed Duncan. The sun is going down, and there is no more to report. Thanks for your business, BRs.


Sal Vitale Jr.

By the time this issue reaches you, there will be only six months till the 50th and 45 days till the end of 2010. Some of you will need to be thinking about, if you haven’t already done so, the income tax consequences of your mandatory 401K withdrawals for 2010. A good way to offset the tax bite imposed by the withdrawals could be to donate some of the money to the Class of ’61 Campaign. Our campaign is focusing on funding the programs for the Ethics and Leadership Center (not to be confused with bricks and mortar). It is never too late to add a little more to what you may (hopefully) have pledged to our 50th Campaign. You did send in your reunion registration, didn’t you? Enough preaching from me! It has been a busy spring and summer and lots of goings on. On with the news! Those of you who do not have e-mail missed the following story. About 18 months ago, Lou Shuba visited the Vietnam Veterans Memorial State Park in Angel Fire New Mexico and was very impressed by the memorial site and chapel. The memorial was originally known as the Vietnam Veterans Peace and Brotherhood Chapel and had its origins in a battle near Con Thien, South Vietnam, in which 16 Marines lost their lives. Among the deceased was David Westphall, a close friend of Dick Weede and the son of Victor and Jeanne Westphall. Thanks to Mr. and Mrs. Westphall, the memorial exists today to honor not only the 16 Marines but all members of America’s armed forces. On Lou’s return, he called me, and we agreed that a 1961VMI plaque dedicated to our class should be placed at the memorial. Thanks to the research help from Brother Rats J.D. “Jack” Miller and Bill Dabney, profiles of our BRs were assembled and sent to the Veterans Foundation, as required by them. Additional information was provided by Katherine Wise, the former editor of the Review. Pictures of our BRs in their military uniform could not be found, so cadet pictures were used. The plaque is black granite, 12 inches square and laser engraved and honors Brother Rats Denis Nicholas, Marion Runion, David Spearman and Peter Kleinberg. Elfriede Winiker (Fred’s wife) knew David Spearman’s sister, Nancy Collie, who lives in Danville, VA, and arranged to have the information forwarded to her. Does anyone know how to contact the other BR families? Should you be near the beautiful Moreno Valley in Angel Fire New Mexico, stop in and visit a


CLASS NOTES while. There is no charge for admission. Not long after my last column due date, Sue and I were on the road to Southport, NC, for the golf outing sponsored by Dickey and Diane Stone. We could only be there for part of the weekend, and the day we were to play, it rained. (You can’t humiliate yourself when you don’t play.)We had a great time and so did those in attendance, to include: Dick and Diane Stone, J.C. Miller, Rhett and Jan Clarkson, Mike and Betty Pitt ’60, Don and Ibis Kern, Sal and Sue Vitale, Walter Stokes, Bob and Bronnie Polk, Bob and Jeanne Burks, Jim Miner, Don and Ann Rishell, Dick and Rita Huneycutt, Stu and Lee Crow, Bud Alligood, Dude and Kathy Copenhaver, Jim and Blair Bickford, Don Wilkinson, George and Edna Henning, Lee and Betsy Badgett, John and Linda Butler, and Dick and Judy Youngblood. It seems that no sooner do you mention someone in the Review,

Class of 1961 Photos from top, right: - In Southport, North Carolina, on May 20, 2010, for a golf outing were, from left, front row: Stone, Miller, Clarkson. Pitt, Kern and Vitale. Second row: Stokes, Polk, Burks, Miner, Rishell, Huneycutt, Crow, Alligood and Copenhaver. Back row: Bickford, Wilkinson, Henning, Badgett, Butler and Youngblood. - At Richard Youngblood’s Richmond party on May 22, 2010, were, from left, front row: Durrette, Youngblood, Copenhaver, Van Orden, Farleigh and Woodfin. Back row: Nelms, Stone, Jarvis, Kiger, Phillips, Woodcock, Daniels, Mabry, Payne, Clarkson and (not pictured) Vitale. - On July 22, 2010, the Polks visited the Gibbings at the Gibbings’ home in Virginia Beach, Virginia. Attending were, from left, Joyce Gibbings, Bronnie and Bob Polk, Bill Gibbings, Jerri and Larry Wetsel, and Pat and Robert Williamson. Not pictured, Sue Vitale. - At the annual pig roast at Lou Shuba’s home in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, were, from left, front row, Sue Vitale, Bill Fout, Ann Hollowell, Sandra Fout, Sylvia Woodcock, Jerri Wetsel, Dana Shepherd, and Pris and Lou Shuba. Back row: Sal Vitale, Bill Haeberlein, Jim McFalls ’59, Sleepy Hollowell, Stu Woodcock, Larry Wetsel and Harry Shepherd ’58.

2010-Issue 4


CLASS NOTES they show up. What a treat it was to be with Dick and Rita Huneycutt at the golf outing. Last time we saw him was our first class year. Dick spent his life as an entrepreneur and still has some projects going on. As soon as I heard his voice, many stories ran through my mind about him, and he told a few that were whoppers. I still wonder if I was in the same school at the same time as you guys. Ray and Sally Hanlein did not make the outing but did manage to play several rounds of golf with Dick and Diane a few days later. Then, when the Stones were in northern Virginia a month later, they played golf again. I guess they both owe me at least two strokes a hole! The next weekend, Sue and I attended a party for those Brother Rats living in Richmond and their guests. (Yes, I invited myself again.) The party was hosted by Dick and Judy Youngblood, and we had a wonderful time. In attendance were: Wyatt Durrette; Dude and Debbie Copenhaver; George Van Orden and his daughter, Lee; Floyd and Jane Farleigh; John and Ann Woodfin; Bill and Connie Nelms; Russell and Gwen Stone; Dick and Betty Jarvis; Lou and Jane Kiger; Bill and Norma Phillips; Stu and Sylvia Woodcock; Bill Daniels; Oscar and Caroline Mabry; Garland Payne; Rhett and Jan Clarkson; and Youngblood and Vitale. Everyone had a wonderful time, and again stories came forth. Battle Haslam is enjoying his time on the VMI Foundation Board. Their last meeting was in Savannah, GA, and Battle stayed with Bill and Marcia Keech. Keech is enjoying his retirement and is feeling good. Back in NC, Battle rendezvoused with Bill Braithwaite for a visit. Bill is on sabbatical through July 2011 from St. Johns College in Annapolis. Bill was visiting the Little Switzerland area of NC to be a seminar leader for the Hickory Humanities Forum, which was organized by Lenoir Rhyne University. According to Battle, Bill is quite distinguished and professorial, sports a long white beard and mustache and is such a purist that he doesn’t own a cell phone! Battle took two major fishing trips in July, along with his grandson, Wynn (15). They went to Tropic Star Lodge, a remote Pacific coast fishing resort unreachable by road, just 50 miles from the Colombian border! They caught marlin, sailfish, tuna, Dorado and roosterfish. Two weeks later, Battle and Wynn flew to Jackson Hole, WY, where they visited with Gaylia Hudgins. As you may recall, Gaylia and Bland volunteered at the Visitor Center for several years, and since Bland’s death in 2007, Gaylia soldiers on in that role. After a tour of the Tetons and Yellowstone, Battle and Wynn joined Harrison Fridley and his son, Lt. Col. Mitchell Fridley ’89 (assistant commandant) at Three Rivers Ranch in eastern Idaho for three days of spectacular


trout fishing on the South Fork of the Snake River. Wynn has started his sophomore year. Battle hopes Wynn will consider VMI when he contemplates colleges. Finally, did you ever wonder how Battle underwrites all his trips? Well, I found the following on Face Book:“The Angus Barn at 9401 Glenwood Avenue, Raleigh, NC, 27617 is proud to announce that Battle Haslam will be playing piano in the Wild Turkey Lounge for three weekend engagements: Saturday and Sunday, Oct. 10-11; Friday and Saturday, Nov. 6-7; and Saturday and Sunday, Dec. 5-6 for tips.” Floyd and Mary Jane Roberts, my roommate, visited when they were touring the “War of Northern Aggression” battlefields from Fredericksburg south. Floyd is in good humor and coping very well with his current medical situation. We had a great time together, and I can only hope he will be at the 50th. David Magee is enjoying retirement and has become a regular on my e-mails. He has a knack for finding very interesting “stuff.” Bob and Bronnie Polk have been making the rounds. Bob visited Ken Patrick at the Cleveland Hospital and then attended a high school football reunion held in Virginia Beach and even found time to have dinner at Bill and Joyce Gibbings’ home. A Brother Rat in town is time for a party. So, Robert and Pat Williamson, Larry and Jerri Wetsel, and Sue Vitale came over for dinner. Sal was out of town. John and Irene Gangemi finally took the trip to Australia that they scheduled to make last year but delayed because of Irene’s health problem. It was Sydney with family and then off to Melbourne, Adelaide, Brisbane and Phillip Island in Victoria, Australia, to see the fairy penguins. Bill and Marcia Keech ventured north to visit the kids in northern VA and then spent three days on the Chesapeake Bay with Gates and Margret Richards on their lovely Grand Banks trawler. (I miss those trips on the Chesapeake.) Ed Fox is busy with his bed and breakfast facility in Pennsylvania and hopes to be at the 50th. Should you be visiting in the Gettysburg area, let him know at FoxsBandB@ Ron Hudgins is still working full time with his structural consulting, and his wife, Doris, makes sure he keeps moving. Doris says they will be at the 50th. Rod sees Battle Haslam every few months. Ashby Taylor is finally underway with the restoration of his historic home in Craddock, VA. Still no schedule date for completion, and I guess that is the way it is done on the Eastern Shore. For over 20 years, Andy Thacker served Cal Poly Pomona University and was known as an educator who cared for the academic achievements of his students. In June, he was recognized by his students and colleagues as an “Outstanding Academic Advisor” and was awarded the

first “Legend of IBM” title. A Dr. Andrew J. Thacker scholarship program was also established at Cal Poly Pomona that will help future generations of students. The way to go, Andy! (Editor’s Note: See more about Thacker in the Alumni News section of this Review.) One of the joys I have as class agent is making contact with Brother Rats who we have not heard from in years. During this Reunion Campaign, I have made contact with several, and here are their brief stories. Charlie Stevens lives in Norfolk, is retired, but does some teaching at ODU and consulting work. Charlie and his wife, Ann, were in high school with Bob Polk and Joyce Gibbings, so we had an opportunity to look at old HS yearbooks pictures, and guess what? Polk was the homecoming king. Charlie left at the end of his third class year and went on to earn his Ph.D. at ODU. Beverly Scott lives in Williamsburg and is almost retired. You may remember Bev was a basketball player and had a concussion and had to leave at the end of his second class year. Bev went into the construction business first with an uncle and then for himself and has constructed over 200 concrete culverts and bridges in VA and MD. (That should make Capt. Stevenson, concrete and Col. Dobyns structures, pleased.) He is still called on for consulting on concrete structures. We hope to meet Bev’s wife, Elece, soon. We should see Stevens and Scott at the 50th. You never know when you will meet a Brother Rat who has been missing or at least not mentioned in our column in the Review. Was I surprised when a man came up to me at the Aylor funeral reception and said he is a ’61 Brother Rat? Well, Fred Stephenson left after his third class year; joined the National Guard and while on active duty, was approached for Officer Candidate School; completed the Infantry Officer Candidate School and The Army Aviation Center for Officer Fixed Wing Training; and served in the U.S. Army for the next 18 years. Fred worked with the BDM Corporation and later as a flight instructor at the Flight Simulator at Fort Hood, TX. He and his wife, Kathryn, retired to Culpeper. I was very pleased to hear from Dave Hancock. Dave is still working his tail off in the Linden, NJ, high school, which is very much an urban high school with all the issues that come with that environment. Dave spends lots of time working with kids and trying to keep them out of the slammer. He also works on a team of teachers, psychologists and sociologists to help challenged kids with ADHD etc. Ernie Johnson is living in Memphis, TN, retired from the packing business and said he can’t drive, which will keep him from the 50th. He occasionally talks to and e-mails his roommates, Harbert Alexander and Paul Thompson. I had a delightful conversation with


CLASS NOTES Ron Scott. Ron, who lives in Destin, FL, was Badgett spent Lee’s birthday in Cancun. Jim and ters for the Marine shooting team, and I saw, in the consumer products business, and Pizza Connie Oliver had a two-week vacation in Mon- firsthand, George’s trophies. I spent some time Hut was one of his accounts. Ron’s son owns tana with family and then toured Yellowstone. It on the firing line during the Inter Services Rifle a Pizza Hut in Athens, GA, so if you are in the was a great time. One day, I received a call from Matches and got to visit with a Virginia Beach area, stop in and say, “The Pizza Man” sent me, David Pouleris ’98 who had in his possession Marine I know, who was competing in the and receive your free pizza. Ron stays in touch a 1961 wood paddle with the name “Frank” matches. It was very hot! I was George’s guest with Gerry Eubank and Bob Burks, and Ron is imprinted on it. David is stationed at Little at the Distinguished Shooters Banquet, and the thinking hard about the 50th Reunion. Welcome Creek, and he brought the paddle to my house. folks I met were fabulous people, as well as the back to all of you. The paddle story I heard from David was an old best shooters in the world. I especially enjoyed I also had a chance to talk to several other girlfriend of “Frank” was getting rid of stuff, and meeting one of the “Top Ten Shooting Team,” BRs who do stay in touch with me. George the paddle was purchased by this David’s mother female Marine Corps shooter Sgt. Emily WindWard is doing much better health wise and is at a garage sale. It turns out that “Frank” is Frank massinger, and the Army’s top shooter, Sgt. figuring out how he can pass in review in his Deaner who says he lost his paddle over 40 years Sherri Jo Gallagher, who they say may be the mobility cart. (We can carry him, if all else ago, and since no other Frank spoke up for it, the greatest high-power shooter of all time. George fails.) Larry Dapra, now living in Forth Worth, paddle must be his. According to Hershell Mur- has extended an invitation to all those BRs who TX, was only with us a few months when he ray, the Naples, FL, breakfast bunch – Hershell, may be in the Richmond area and in need of a got his appointment to West Point. I told him Hill Browning and Dave Elliott – meet regularly place to stay. George has a beautiful home, and we have better reunions; he is thinking about and will be at reunion. his wife, Marina, is a wonderful host, as well returning. Jim Gabbert is still living in Salem, I finally visited the Marine Corps Museum in as a former women’s national high-power rifle VA, and is in good health and providing care for Quantico (during the weekend with the 104-dechampion and big game hunter. As George tells his 90-years-plus mom. So, he and Nancy can gree temperature) with George Van Orden. it, “If I get out of line, Marina will give me return for only part of the weekend. Some time Should you be traveling on I-95, the museum is a 500-yard head start”! What a weekend. On together is better than no time! Mike Payne right off the exit and not on the post – definitely my way home from George’s, I stopped to see is experiencing some health issues but has worth visiting. I was aware that Bill Dabney / Dennis Curtis. Dennis lives about 20 minutes not given up on the 50th. Len and Mary Kay Hill 881 was a featured exhibit. I did not know from George. Dennis was not home, but I did Martin in San Antonio and Dave and Cammie that BR Dick Weede also was featured, as he meet his son-in-law, Patrick, who lives across Bella in Oregon already have their tickets for told the story about Leatherneck Square. We the street. Patrick said Dennis and his wife, their trip back to Lexington. A special thanks visited these Brother Rats’ exhibits at least a Jerry, moved from Georgia to be closer to the to Fred Kressierer for taking the time to visit dozen times, and when we heard visitors talking grandkids. I finally caught up with Dennis by Ken Patrick in the hospital several times. Fred about these exhibits, we were quick to sound phone and all seems to be OK. He is planning lives about an hour away, and I know the visits off that they were VMI 1961 Brother Rats. I to be at the 50th; right, Dennis? meant a lot to both Ken and Sue. Fred is retired also saw a write-up on George’s grandfather, Don Rishell was in town for a meeting, and from American Express and spends a lot of time Col. Van Orden. Since I was with George, we he stayed with us. He manages to stay very busy in church activities and at hospitals cheering up went on to the post and visited the headquarwith projects all over the country, and it’s always those that need it. nice to see him when he is in VB. At Tom and Barbara Phlegar, Jim the end of July, Sue and I traveled and Connie Oliver, and Barry and to Gettysburg for the annual Shuba Elizabeth Orndorff got together to pig roast. It was a beautiful day, and eat a buffalo dinner at the Swinging as always, the food and homemade Bridge Restaurant in Point Bank, beer were outstanding. Those in VA. There were no comments on attendance included: Bill and Sandra the quality of the meat? Tom had his Fout, Stu and Sylvia Woodcock, annual music festival at his farm, and Larry and Jerri Wetsel, Bill HaeberBarry and Betty Orndorff attended, lein, Sleepy and Ann Hollowell, Jim along with a couple of hundred other McFalls ’59, and Harry and Dana folks. If you go to www.YouTube. Shepherd ’58. It was great seeing com and type in Phlegar, you can see Sleepy vertical and walking. He has how one of your Brother Rats can been through a lot. Jim McFalls make a fool out of himself. Archie kept us laughing with his storytellRamirez relocated to Fredericksing, and it amazes me how many burg, VA, about 18 months ago and he has. (A surprise visit by Ken and is practicing with Rappahannock Sue Patrick finished out the day. Neurosurgery Associates. Hopefully, The Rabbit was on his way home we will see more of him now! At the from the Cleveland Hospital and had Boys Invitational Baseball Tournato stop in for some pig. Ken looks ment, the Chesterfield Baseball Club great and says thanks to all those Class of 1961: On Aug. 2, 2010, at Three Rivers Ranch Nationals started Wyatt Durrette’s who took the time to call, send cards South Fork on the Snake River in eastern Idaho were, from grandson, Tanner Fuller, as their and visit him during his two-and-aleft, front row, Battle Haslam, Wynn Haslam and Lt. Col. pitcher. Tanner threw a “no-hitter,” half-month hospital stay. On the day Mitchell Fridley ’89. Second row: Harrison Fridley. Third and his team won 2-0. Talk about a Bob Polk visited him, Ken had three row: The fishing guides. proud grandfather. Lee and Betsey calls from BRs: Paul Johnston,

2010-Issue 4


CLASS NOTES Mitch Kot (Vietnam) and Sleepy Hollowell. As mentioned before, Fred Kressierer called several times and brightened Ken’s day. Tom Whalen is still traveling around the world, and he has his airline ticket in hand for the 50th. Charlie Peckham is living in New Hampshire, is planning to reunite with us at our 50th and is on Facebook. On Friday nights from 4:30 p.m. to 7:00 p.m., Bill and Joyce Gibbings continue to host beer and cookies parties for all who want to attend. Actually, quality beer, wine and great nibbles are served. One Friday, Dude and Kathy Copenhaver made the trip from Fayetteville to join in the Friday festivities. With Dude as the main attraction, the party grew to include Don and Ibis Kern, Jerri Wetsel, Charlie and Ann Stevens, Robert and Pat Williamson, and Sue and Sal Vitale. During the last few months, Garland Payne has also been a frequent visitor. So, if you are in Virginia Beach on a Friday, Bill says come by. I get mixed reviews from you when I identify those on the “Gim List.” No one likes to hear bad news. Unfortunately, lots of us have aliments, and it is my view that when you know that someone is having a health problem and you have gone through the same problem, a few encouraging words from you can go a long way to hasten healing. Also, calls and cards to ailing BRs lift the spirit, as both Rabbit and Sleepy can attest to and a couple of extra prayers can help to. I ask you to keep the following in prayers: Nelle and Hugh Gouldthorpe, Floyd Roberts, Larry Respess, Mike Payne, Buzz Bossart, John Steadman, Andy Thacker, Carl Zick, John Woodfin, Ken Patrick, George Ward, Sleepy Hollowell, John Purner, Jim Berger and all those other wives and Brother Rats who are coping with health issues. Thank God that losing two Brother Rats in a week is not something that happens too often. George Russell “Russ” Aylor Jr. died of a massive heart attack and was laid to rest in Culpepper. Harrison and Terry Fridley attended Russ’ visitation and said that there was quite a large crowd. (The line went out of the funeral home to the highway.) The next day at the church service, VMI was well represented with Bill Gibbings, Fred Stephenson, Sal Vitale, Ray Hanlein, Spike Callander, Dick Weede, Carl and Becky Hirsch, Ben and Diane Lynch, Ed and Linda Duncan’60, and Everett Powell ’55. We met with Paige and the children, and they were most appreciative. Kenneth George “Ken” Ederle passed away quite suddenly. According to his daughter, Meghan, the doctors were not sure what was wrong. During the next week, his condition worsened. The family said to thank all the Brother Rats for all the kind thoughts and prayers and the beautiful flowers from the class and his old swimming teammates. Meghan said,


“Though Dad was not feeling well, he clearly remembered the greatest details of his friendships and experiences with all of you. That always amazed me, and it was just so wonderful to see!” I am very sorry to tell you that we lost two sister Rats. Janet Popp suffered from cardiovascular disease. Medical science bought Jan 11 years after her two coronaries, but unfortunately, her biochemistry, physiology and system collapse toward the end generated the coma she never came out of. As I was finishing these notes, I learned that Pat Eubank, Gerry Eubank’s wife, has passed away. Pat had been sick for the past few months, and when I recently talked to Gerry, he said the doctors were not sure what the problems were. May both Jan and Pat rest in peace! We all want our children to outlive us, and sometimes that is not the case. Our hearts go out to Dick Parker’s wife, Gloria, who recently lost her daughter. Finally, I received a call from Jennifer Zinn, the daughter of BR Lt. Col. Ernest K. White. Ernie spent his Rat year with us and after graduation from West VA University (WVU), spent 25 years in the Army, with his last assignment as PMS&T at WVU. Ernie passed away in 2000, and Ernie’s wife, Nona, lives with the daughter in Greensboro, NC. I thanked the family for bringing this to closure. That is the news through Aug. 14. I had a hard time picking only five pictures to be published from the 20 sent me. Sorry if I offended anyone. Finally, if you haven’t registered for the 50th Reunion, please do so. We will need a preliminary count for the hotel and other activities in the next few months. Please stay healthy! To all, a Happy Thanksgiving, and God bless you and VMI.


Jerry Burnett

I start my VMI class notes of 2010-Issue 4 on a sad note. We lost BR Michael Cantrell, age 70, of Rocky Mount, VA, on Monday, May 24, 2010, after a long battle with Alzheimer’s disease. Mickey was born in Pound, VA, and is survived by his son, Michael Lee, and daughter, Chesten Cantrell, of Rocky Mount, VA. Mickey was a biology major, and he was in my section our Rat year. He was always kind and cheerful and possessed a wonderful sense of humor. He left after our Rat year and graduated from Randolph Macon College in Ashland, VA. In the ’70s, he was clerk of the circuit court of Wise County and later served as an assistant to the commissioner of revenue. He moved to Rocky Mount, VA, in the 80’s where he ran a business until his retirement. He was buried at Bolling Cemetery in Pound.

After my last class notes regarding “Bricks – A Mark for All Time,” I received a nice note from Howard Cobb. He donated one of his accumulated bricks to his old roommate, Tom Sweeney, one to Ron Goodyear who lived in Covington when Howard and Nell were living there, and one to Bill Lloyd who was in his high school class at E.C. Glass. He donated his remaining brick to any other Brother Rat that I or the VMI Foundation chooses. I also received a nice note from Jim Richards who chose to dedicate one of his bricks in memory of his beloved roommate, Richard D. LeMay, who was killed in action in Vietnam. He dedicated another brick to BR James P. Rogan who also died in Vietnam. Jim had seen both of them in Vietnam shortly before their respective deaths. He thinks of them often and cherishes their memory. At their last meeting, Jim, who commanded Foxtrot Company, did not let me forget that he still didn’t think much of his parade lines grading. Jim loved his teasing. Bill Bryant wrote wanting the following information, which I am sure all of you would also like to know. We matriculated 387 BRs of which 267 graduated. I can document that 38 BRs have died since matriculation. However, 90 BRs do not respond to mailings, and their whereabouts are unknown. Bill and Cynthia cannot understand why more BRs haven’t retired to the beautiful Williamsburg, VA, area. They see Bowles and Patsy Pender frequently, as well as Jay and Carol Bierman. They occasionally see Mott and Diane Robertson. Cynthia has created a masterpiece in their back yard with perennial, woodland and shade garden areas, two water features, plus a dependency, pavilion and “Greek Temple” folly. She also volunteers as a tour guide for two

Class of 1962: At the Confederate Veterans Annual Reunion, July 24, 2010, in Anderson, South Carolina, were, General Stonewall Jackson and wife Anna (as portrayed by Jerry and Joy Burnett).


CLASS NOTES Colonial Williamsburg historic buildings in the subsequent treatment methodologies are rapidly Tour.” Walt said it was a fabulous trip, and they Colonial Williamsburg Floral Design Studio, improving the capabilities for the prevention, had a great time together. The trip included where she has become a superb floral arranger, management and curing of disease. The good several VMI professors, five cadets (ranging another passion. Bill volunteers for the Colonial news is that even though we are pretty far down from Rats to first classmen) and several alumni. Williamsburg Archeology Conservation lab, the ‘trail,’ our classmates and families will see The combination of groups and the knowledge re-cataloging 70 years of artifacts. Last year, he many of the benefits in our lifetime.” Skip and of Professor Kip Muir and the other trip leaders took up lawn bowling, which he describes as a Sharon enjoy their two young grandchildren and made for an energetic and great learning experigreat sport. At 70, he is living proof that it is not ence. His group (numbering 23 in total) was an old person’s sport. A long time bowler and generally on the bus by 8 a.m. and didn’t return Bill recently won the club’s 2010 Pairs Champiuntil 6 p.m. The evenings were fun, with good onship. A few weeks ago, they were driving to French restaurants and much interaction with Decatur, GA, to visit their daughter, Katherine, the group. He said the cadets were fabulous and who is at Emory University working toward would make every alumnus proud. By the end a Ph.D. in neuroscience. They will continue of the trip in Paris, Maureen and Mary looked on to Panama City, FL, to visit their married at George and Walt and said, “We have seen son, Christopher, who is stationed at Tyndall battlefields for a week; today, we are shopping.” Air Force Base, being trained to be an F-22 Walt and George would recommend this trip to crew chief. His duty station for the next four everyone. Class of 1962: In April 2010, Weldon years will be nearby Langley Air Force Base, Pat Lang wrote in early June that he had Eddins, left, and Pat Morrison fished at where he will be assigned to the F-22 squadron celebrated his 70th birthday. Pat is working on Weldon’s Solomon place for two days. which accompanies Air Force One on flights. his third book in a trilogy. I have read his first Note the hats, as well as the fish. Thus, the reason for Bill’s first question when book and reviewed a synopsis of his second I mentioned the number of deaths of our BRs. book. I will give you a report on his third book, He reports, based on U.S. actuarial tables, 29% family, golf and flying their Bonanza to neat spots. since part of it involves VMI and, as I recall, of white males die between 18 and 70. Since he They also had a great visit to Australia last fall. General Jubal Early. Pat is still on the board of doesn’t know and I am not sure how many BRs Spencer Elmore wrote after my last class the Guggenheim Foundation. Last year, he was are in our database, we don’t know if our class notes that he would like to donate his accumumuch engaged as an expert witness in court is ahead or behind the curve. Finally, for his lated bricks in the name of BR Nelson Elliott cases involving prisoners at Gitmo. He said it thought for the day – at age 70, we have a 50% and James N. Barker. took a lot of his time. chance of reaching 84. Bill, thanks for the good, It is always nice to hear from John Shelhorse. At present, I have incorrect e-mails for 28 or morbid, news. George Collins wrote and sent pictures of the Brother Rats. If all of you would be so kind Seymour Samuels had open heart surgery in “Battlefield Tour” in France led by VMI professor as to e-mail me your e-mail addresses when mid March to fix an aneurysm of the ascending Kip Muir. George said it was an excellent trip, you receive these class notes, it would be most aorta, replace the aortic valve and a bypass. very moving. He said, “My father was a 90-day appreciated. He went back into the hospital in early April to wonder in the Third Army with Patton.” The readEdmund and Margie Strickler spent the have fluid drained off the heart and lungs. At ing material was superb, and the company on the month of June in South Boston. Joy and I had last report in middle of May, he was recovertrip was most enthusiastic. He recommends this the pleasure of seeing them often and having ing as programmed by the cardiologist with the trip to all interested in WWI and WWII history. dinner. Edmund and I played golf. At last report normal bumps in the road. Our prayers remain The trip pointed out the pain and problems our in the middle of July, they had made it to Monfor your continued improvement, Seymour. fathers and grandfathers went through. tana and were enjoying the cool weather. Skip Davis reports that Sharon and he have reWalt Perrin also sent a note from Mary, Bill Mizell and I played in the Member/Guest tired from Providence on March 31st but continue George and Maureen about the “Battlefield Golf Tournament at Princess Ann Country Club to serve on several boards, consult in Virginia Beach. Joy and I are and work on a couple of entreprecrazy about Bill’s new friend, Dineurial projects that have promise. anne. While we were dining at the Last fall, the governor appointed club, we ran into Tom and Carpie Skip to the Life Sciences Discovery Coulbourn. Foundation which awards grants to Wayne Pacine wrote to complipromising biomedical technology rement the editors of the Alumni Research projects and developing comview for producing one of the best panies. Partly, with the help of The publications in quite some time. He University of Washington, they have commented that the photos were had success, and he finds it fascinatexceptional and covered a wide ing and intellectually challenging to range of topics. He really enjoys help fund cutting edge diagnostic and reading it. Charlie Crowder had treatment advances. The funds come told him that I was an expert skeet/ from the tobacco settlement monies trap shooter. Charlie, thanks for Class of 1962: In July 2010 at the Burnett’s home in and the Gates Foundation, and the the compliment, but I raised 500 South Boston, Virginia, to work on the 2012 Class Restate’s goal is to encourage research quail last year, and 450 of the quail union Biography Handbook were, from left, Judy and and economic development. He said, out of the 500 flew leisurely on to Tony Curtis and Joy Burnett. “New diagnostic techniques and their freedom by my “non-expert

2010-Issue 4


CLASS NOTES shooting.” Anyway, Wayne has challenged me to a match sometime-somewhere. Wayne shoots at Bull Run Park Shooting Center almost every weekend and really enjoys the sport. Frequently, he will shoot 50 straight on wobble-trap and has gotten up to 68 straight on one occasion. He, too, has his own challenges shooting skeet. Wayne continues to work and loves his job at the Board of Governors Federal Reserve System. He reports to the #2 man on the board, and that presents continuous opportunities to have an extremely challenging and exciting job. He just returned from a business meeting in Brussels, Belgium, and took several side trips to Paris, Amsterdam and Brugge. Wayne, thanks for the invitation to the private luncheon at the board. I will take you up on your offer. John Cooke writes that he has had three misfortunes in the last month. First, he fell down an embankment and fractured a bone in his face and two other places. Later, he had internal bleeding, was rushed to the hospital by the rescue squad and spent two nights. Lastly, he has had a skin cancer removed from his left ear which required partial removal of the ear. Otherwise, he is doing as well as can be expected after losing two brothers in the past year. In early July, Joy and I were honored to have as our guests Tony and Judy Curtis. We discussed and worked on the 50th-year Reunion Book. Our class owes Tony and Judy our gratitude for the hard work they are doing on this reunion book. To date, they have received 120 bios. They have called 110 BRs asking that they submit their bios. At a designated time, Tony and I plan to publish and circulate a list of all BRs who have submitted their bios and the ones whom we have contacted that have not submitted their bios. If you do not plan to submit a bio, please notify Tony or myself so that we will not have to “bug you anymore.” If you are interested, I would be happy to e-mail you a list of our deceased BRs, and perhaps you may be able to help us update our records of any other BRs who are deceased that we are not aware of. I enjoy being your class agent, and I look forward to your notes. In the Bonds and Spirit of VMI … Jerry Burnett


Michael J. Curley

Hot enough for everyone? Here in Richmond, we’ve set many heat records recently, but it’s been years since we last saw 105 degrees! They say you can always talk about the weather whenever the conversation goes flat, and that’s exactly what’s happened here for the last


quarter. So, it’s time for me to chide the class for not sharing enough news and pictures about yourself and your family recently. As a result, I have only one picture to publish and about 75% of the usual volume of news to share with you all. With great humility, I admit to snapping a picture of Tom Snyder with my new Droid, but it was unfortunately too small for print … my bad. So, your class agent is whining again, OK? Let’s change the subject to something we all look forward to … a colonoscopy! There, I’ve said it, but it’s for a good purpose, I assure you. I am looking forward to my second routine procedure since I turned 60, and although I dread it, particularly that horrible cocktail, I know it’s necessary. Out of love for all my Brother and Sister Rats, I encourage you all to make this a part of your medical regimen. We all know colorectal cancer is a silent killer, and I’ve needlessly lost one roommate to it already. Enough said? I’ve been having some computer problems of late, and one of the hateful side effects was that I nearly lost my entire e-mail file … everything. As a result, I was slow to answer some e-mails, one of which was from my old Glee Club buddy, Tom Snyder. His e-mail was dated June 26th and mentioned an upcoming trip to Richmond. I failed to check the date of his trip at the time. Man, was I surprised to receive a call from Tom on July 11th announcing his imminent departure the following morning … Good Grief, what a screw up! Happily, we, along with his lovely bride, Lynda, were able to get together for breakfast Monday morning, Tom’s treat. His e-mail is a terrific accounting of what’s going on in his life: “Hi, Mike: I’ll be heading east again for our family reunion outside Richmond, and if you’re in town, would love to see you and learn what’s new (or old, since it’s easier to remember!). Will be getting in on Saturday, July 10th, and be there until Monday the 12th – a short stay, as usual. Be staying at the same motel as last year. Sunday or Monday a.m. might be good for our schedule. We’ll have just returned (I hope!) from a backpacking trip in Alaska and the Yukon where we’re doing the Chilkoot Trail of Klondike Gold fame with my 25-year-old son and five great nephews from the states. The nephews are city kids (two from D.C., 1 from MD, 1 from Virginia Beach and 1 from Poughkeepsie, NY) who range in age from 13 to 16 and will be flying in today and tomorrow. We fly to Whitehorse, YT, on Monday and then travel to Skagway, AK, via bus and train to the trailhead before heading out for six days. My wife, Lynda, is the only female in our party, but we’ll be in the same camp sites as an 81-year-old friend from New Zealand and his party of nine that includes at least two women. Be able to celebrate Canada Day (July

1st) and the 4th in style on the trail. Some BRs, I’m sure, will have been in Skagway via ferry. Let me know if you’re in town when we’ll be in Richmond. Sounds like you’re doing well from your messages as class agent, which you continue to have my gratitude for doing. In the bond … Tom.” (mjc: Tom, promise I won’t let this happen again … next time, we will gather a crowd in your honor!) Looks like Doug and Rachel Sterrett have made their move to Boone, NC. “Yes, for those who don’t know, we have moved lock, stock and barrel to Boone over the past month; we are very busy renovating the home we are buying. I have just about rebuilt the upstairs, painted both the upper and lower porches (both look down on a mountain stream – headwaters of the New River), and a large deck. We plan to do extensive work on an older section which has a bad foundation. Right now, everything we own is in storage in several spots around town. Hope to start moving some of it in next week. I’ve found a lot of sore muscles and joints over the last week but feel the new physical activity will be good for me. Rachel sends her love and says hello. We’ll keep you updated as we get more settled.” I received a short email from Phil Marley and in it he mentioned a health problem which prompted me to inquire about it. He replied, “My ‘heart stuff’ is not good. I was diagnosed with congestive heart failure about six years ago. It has really slowed me down. Because my situation is inoperable, I take heavy diuretics which means I need to be close to the bathroom. (mjc: Relax, Phil; you’re in good company there!) My health issues have just kept me out of the loop, and I haven’t been in touch with my Brother Rats. Susan and I retired to Siesta Key, Florida. It’s a beautiful place, and we have a wonderful view of the inter-coastal waterway from our great room. The Gulf of Mexico is right beyond our front door. I have become an avid reader and crossword solver, and of course, I still enjoy a scotch or two. The political situations and the state of our union keep my ire up, but my sense of humor keeps me going. I enjoy reading about the happenings of my Brother Rats and families in your columns. You do a great job! Thanks for responding.” I’ve often wondered about Garry Kemple, and when I heard that our Class Goodwill Ambassador, Pat Kelly, was planning a CA trip, he agreed to look him up. Pat found him and paid him a visit. He writes, “Gary is in good spirits after 29 days in the hospital. Learning to walk again. He said he hasn’t come to any VMI functions because of his condition. I reminded him that at this age ALL OF US have some sort of physical (or mental) disabilities. We talked a bit about his life. Seems he went into


CLASS NOTES the Army after getting a master’s degree (don’t New Zealand. We had a wonderful three-week first grandchildren, and our lives are changed remember where) and then decided to move to trip. The Ozzies and Kiwis are wonderful people, forever. Look for them in the Provisional ApCA, as he had several relatives living out there. and the scenery, particularly in New Zealand, was pointments, Class of 2032!” And similar news Got married, had two boys and one girl. The spectacular. A great trip!” (mjc: And thank you, from Frank Allison: “ … as we discussed, my girl and her family live very near him – come Art, for our one picture!) oldest daughter, Stephanie, has four boys and over weekly. One son lives in Las Vegas and On frequent occasions, I receive e-mails from all have provisional appointments to VMI. She the other somewhere in CA – Fresno, maybe? a group of you attempting to put a name on a teaches second grade at Maybeury, about a mile He went to work for a chemical manufacturer face in some 47- to 50-year-old photo. Usually, from your house. She lives less than a quarter of in City of Commerce (part of LA) and worked I am just as much in the dark as anyone as to a mile from the school. Her oldest son, Walker there until retirement. Was diagnosed with the identity of the innocuous face, but the net White (my grandson), will be reporting to VMI MS 26 years ago. It didn’t bother him a lot the result of these exchanges is that I hear from on Aug. 21st to join the Ratline, class of 2014. first 10 years, but then the effects began to be people who don’t usually write. This quarter’s The next son down will be a junior at St. Chrisnoticeable. Since then, he’s been working to contributor is John Macrae who wrote, “What topher in Richmond and has expressed a great keep in shape and minimize its effects. This last a nice surprise. To all, it is so good to hear from deal of interest in the VMI class of 2016. Their hospitalization was due to a urinary tract infeceveryone. Thank you, Mike, for all your notes father is a graduate of the UVa Darden School tion. It seems any sort of infection compounds and for keeping up with us all. I have a story of Business, so I was surprised when he decided the effects of MS, so it hit him really hard. to tell. About a year ago, I volunteered to help to go to VMI. He says that he is interested in a That’s why he was in hospital for 29 days. I with the local VMI Alumni Association (Triad) military career. The Institute is a good choice think that if he were encouraged sufficiently, he for making contact phone calls. Imagine my for him. would come to the 50th. He is very talkative, so surprise when one of my contacts was Hudson UPCOMING EVENTS: Hobbs and Heidi I think if we e-mailed or called him, he’d love Barker! Since that time, I have had the pleasure Goodwin are planning a Major Mini Oct. it!” (mjc: Patrick, You are a Prince!) of visiting Hudson. Then, about two months 21st to the 24th at their “Rivah” place near Bob Walton also checked in to say, “Buddy ago, my daughter, Joanne Villers in Roanoke, Kilmarnock, VA. I attached an Adobe PDF Cato, Ken Reams and I still stay in touch fairly called the Lake Townsend Yacht Club to purpresentation to my class e-mail with full details. regularly through e-mail, and Buddy and I get chase some sailing lessons for me for Father’s I am sure a good time will be had by all! A together for lunch/dinner every now and then. Day. She talked to Hudson Barker! Hudson number of us will also be gathering at the Rivah Mary Landon and I hope to get out to Texas said, ‘Is this the same John Macrae that went place of Jack and Tracy Harris for a major crab sometime next year, and we’re hopeful that we to VMI?’ What a pleasant surprise! Kent, I am picking. Jack and Tracy will be joined by Mike can hook up with Mike and Betty Walton while happy to hear you are coming back to Virginia! and Peg Curley, Bob and Bromby Earle, Art we’re there.” Jim Taylor made me chuckle with I will certainly look forward to seeing you!” and Ann Phaup, and Dick and Jane Warren, a Ted Chilcote-ism. Jim wrote to say, “Hey, (mjc: Thanks to Kent McCraney for initiating who don’t get out of town very often, at least to Mike: My recent horse experience reminded me this exchange and for making his plans to move eat crabs! of something Ted Chilcote said in 2008 when back to Virginia general knowledge.) Class Notes and the Class Roster are available I called him. When I heard Ted raised quarter “Exciting news for the Smither family,” online at Class notes pictures horses, I asked if he rode them, and he said writes Mike. “Daughter Beth and her husband, may be also be viewed at www.curleyrat. ,‘Just try to find an orthopedist on Wednesday Paul, doubled the size of their family with the Check out photos of Tom afternoon.’ Excellent advice.” births of twin sons Alixandre Trent Donhauser Snyder and Garry Kemple on the photos site. Jan Lacy wrote of her recent trip back home to and Drew Peter Donhauser on 28 May 2010 The Class of ’63 lost one of our members, Nebraska: “I’m fine – went to NE for Mother’s (our son, Trent’s, birthday!). Needless to say, Michael Shenberger Smith. Mike was with Day – she was 90 last October. Cold there – ice we are both thrilled and exhausted. They are our us for only a year and 4-1/2 months, was in F on the car the day I came back. Heck Company and according to Charof a hail storm this past Sunday. Maybe lie McBride, “ … roomed with this one will get me the new roof that Bill Birdsong and me for the first I’m convinced I need and would have semester of our third class year. if Lacy was here – they diss old granI can’t remember his major, but I nies!” (mjc: Hell, Jan, so did Mell!) think he played Rat football. He I always worry when Artie Phaup was a quiet guy and always talked doesn’t answer his e-mails within a about York, PA.” Many of you few hours. Remember, he runs our weighed in but, like me, couldn’t Web site and has become my interface paint much of a picture. May he with the Web. So, I sent him an address rest in peace! change recently … no answer. Then Mike and Peg Curley were after a few days, he wrote, “Mike, blessed with another grandson, I’m currently in New Zealand but will James Thornburg, born to Peg’s address the changes when I return. son and his wife, Jonathon and We spent several days in Australia Amanda Thornburg, Feb. 22nd. (Cairns and Sydney) and now New What a neat kid who is already a Zealand (Christchurch, Queensland target for a Provisional AppointClass of 1963: Ann and Art Phaup visiting a Queensland, and Auckland), then off to Fiji before ment from his step-grandfather, New Zealand, sheep farm during their July 2010 trip to the return trip. Here’s a photo of Ann I might add. Also heading for Australia, New Zealand and Fiji. and me at a sheep farm in Queenstown, VMI is my grandson, Cole Spicer,

2010-Issue 4


CLASS NOTES a sophomore at Benedictine High School in The Holy City. Son Paul Curley ’94 and wife Katherine have already secured an appointment for grandson McCourt Curley, age 2-1/2. (mjc: Man, that’s pretty scary … more ‘curleyrats’!) That’s all from The Holy City for now. Pray for our troops in harm’s way, our departed and those on the GIM. God bless! … Curleyrat LESS THAN THREE YEARS UNTIL OUR 50th!


John R. Cavedo

It’s been three full months since we set up the Web site and the Facebook page for our class. The purpose of both was to provide a forum for exchanging photos and personal activity. Both initially had good response. But within 30 days, neither had many “hits.” During the past 30 days, both sites have been basically inactive except for items Sherrel and I have posted personally. So, unless there are a dozen or so of you who object, or there is an increase in activity, we’ll pull both offline. Perhaps we were too far ahead in technology. We can try again in a year or so. Frank Parker has had heart surgery. He wrote, “Looks like I’m having surgery to replace a leaky aortic valve. Lucky to have picked it up on annual physical. I should be in great shape to make our Russia trip.” I got this quick note from Frank Parker: “Looks like I’m going to make it. Two weeks post surgery, and I’m fully mobile. I can do a half mile two or three times each week. No question I’ll be ready for Russia in September.” Mary Jo Jordan e-mailed, “It was my pleasure to travel with the VMI group and get to know all of you better. What a wonderful, kind group of travelers. I can’t help but think about how much Sam would have enjoyed being with his Brother Rats and wives for this trip. It really was a fun time, despite the baked brains and airport delay. I rode back to NJ with the Seagers and their relatives, the Pennypackers, from JFK and then drove to Columbia, MD, on Sunday. I spent the week there and then drove home to MI on Friday. So, I am back home for a couple weeks and have just now finished unpacking after being gone from MI for a month in total. “I want to add another special thanks to those who helped me when I was ill at the mosque. You can’t imagine how relieved I was to see some familiar faces. My doctor agreed that it was no doubt dehydration from the heat mixed with the meds I take. So, I will always be care-


ful to drink, drink and drink!! I thought I was doing that but evidently not enough that day. Thanks for being such wonderful paramedics and friends! I have felt totally fine since then with no other problems. “I’m driving to Petsokey today. It’s a really pretty area of MI on Lake Michigan. It’s a beautiful day here and will be a pretty drive. “I’m thinking seriously about the Russian trip. My son is encouraging me, as he spent a summer in Russia and enjoyed it there very much. Wish he could come with us, as he reads the language (and could speak it at the time but says he’s lost a lot of that since returning and not using it for so long). But of course, he’ll be working in September. The group was wonderful and so welcoming and fun. I may sign up again but haven’t made the final decision. Connie said she would think about it. That will work out one way or another, so I’m not concerned at all. Guess I just need to catch my breath a bit before making the final decision.” Class agent note: Mary Jo did sign up for Russia with her travelling companion from the Egypt trip. That companion is Connie Gage, a childhood friend of Sandy DeForrest. That should be a reminder. All of class of ’64 is invited. Singles spouses and widows. All with friends are invited. Tom Allen’s wife, Carol, wrote in, “Just wanted to let you know Tom and I got home Friday night after a good trip in Jordan. Good and bad, actually. We both really enjoyed being in Jordan, but our guide made us really appreciate the way Hala (the guide from Egypt) looked after us! The Jordan guide did not warn us at all when there was going to be a lot of very difficult walking, even though two people in the group walked with canes! Tom had a bad fall on some steps near the Dead Sea, a shock for me when I saw his leg very scratched up and bleeding! And no warning at all that we would be walking on very uneven difficult roads for a LONG time in the Roman ruins in Jaresh. So, consequently, Tom was in a good bit of pain. “But in spite of the difficulties, our treks to Petra, Wadi Rum, the Jordan River, Mt. Nebo and the Dead Sea were all very interesting and meaningful. It was really something to stand where Moses stood and looked out on the Promised Land. And to get in the waters where Jesus was baptized in the Jordan. And to float in the Dead Sea. “Getting back home was not any easier than getting there! We were on British Airways, and our flight from Cairo was cancelled. Fortunately, I used Skype to call about the flight a couple of days ahead of time, so no surprises at the airport. But we flew from Amman to Cairo on Thursday night, finally got to bed at 12:30, got up at 2 a.m. and flew to Rome at 5

a.m. Then to JFK, then at last to Raleigh after a two-hour delay in JFK. So, we were very glad to get home. We’re still recovering from jet lag and the time change. “All in all, not a restful trip but a really good trip. So fascinating to see the pyramids and the Nile and so on and so on. If only the vendors weren’t so annoying!” Pete Mitchko has had a tough time recently. At my request, he sent in the following: “Things aren’t too bad. I have been fighting coronary artery disease since 1984. So far, I have a great cardiologist, and we keep cutting the blockages before they do damage to my heart. The five angioplasties did not include a quad bypass procedure in 1998. Seems I just have bad plumbing. Absent this little issue, everything else is good, and I am still gainfully employed by Uncle Sam in the U.S. Treasury Office of Thrift Supervision as one of the oldest living field bank examiners. Unfortunately, I spend too much time closing banks these days. Hopefully, my daughter will graduate Cal State Fresno next year, and I can put in my papers and head down to my house and boat in Cape Coral, FL - if the oil slick doesn’t beat me to it. I am going to try to make the 50th matriculation reunion and certainly will be at the 50th in 2014. I think sometimes I am the poster boy for angioplasties. It was very new when I had my first one at Columbia Pres in NYC. Then, it took five days for the procedure. Now, it is in and out in less than 24 hours. “I mainly am on Facebook to keep track of my little princess who decided that California was the only place she could go to college and not have me showing up every weekend to keep track of her or for that matter sitting in class and doing her papers. “Hopefully this will be the last financial bank crisis I will see. I started with the Federal Reserve in NYC in 1968 as an examiner, and this is my third agency and looks like I will end my career in the OCC (Office of the Comptroller of Currency) when congress passes the final financial reform act and merges this agency.” Tony Munera e-mailed: “The attached picture of me and my son, Andy, was taken at Radford’s 12th Annual Memorial Day Program sponsored by the Veterans of Foreign Wars, American Legion and Vietnam Veterans. My son is the commander of the Radford Army Ammunition Plant. He was the keynote speaker at the event and gave a very inspiring talk. Hard to believe that 30 years ago I was that skinny. Barb and I went to Radford to listen to his talk and to visit with my son and his family which includes our two grandsons, Adam, 17, and Justin, 14. They both have provisional appointments to VMI. Maybe one of the two will take them up on it.”


CLASS NOTES Jan Rudinoff, who is a good correspondent and travels as much as, if not more than, Sherrel and I, sent in the following: “Paula and I are going to Bumbershoot in Seattle after coming back from a couple of weeks in Nelson, BC. We have a boat on Kootenay Lake and will stay with friends. The VMI dates for the matriculation reunion and Russia are not good for us. But I will keep looking at the trips. We are off to Alaska for two weeks June 6-14

and then back to Kauai for July and half of August.” Bill Black is another Brother Rat with some severe health issues: “Well, try as I might, I can’t get the problem to go away by ignoring it. The short version is that I was diagnosed as having lung cancer in mid May. Type II A, N1, squamous carcinoma to be exact. Since then, I’ve been getting tested in various clinics and hospitals in the Houston area. Last week, I was

admitted to the prestigious MD Anderson Clinic on an outpatient basis. My admission was largely due the relentless and herculean efforts of my son and daughter-in-law. Yesterday, I/we met with my cancer doctor for his presentation of what’s going to be done to cure me. Basically, the plan is in three parts: chemotherapy, surgery and radiology. Chemo starts Monday, June 21st, and consists of four applications, three weeks apart. At the midpoint, they’ll run tests to

Class of 1964

Photos clockwise from top left: -Tony and Andy Munera at the Radford Ammunition Plant, May 2010. -John Thornton and Hank Cronin at the Rappahanock River, June 2010. -Attending Ring Figure Weekend in October 1963 were, from left, Sam Jordan, Joe Chompaisal and Ed Seager. -Meeting in Jupiter, Florida, were, from left, Nelson Trinkle, Lee Fleshood and Don Carson. -Butch and Joan Nunnally, pictured fourth and fifth from left, with their family on the North Carolina shore, June 2010.

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CLASS NOTES evaluate the results and make any adjustments that seem appropriate. The chemo is to shrink the main tumor and hopefully to kill the cancers in the surrounding lymph nodes. The surgery is supposed to actually remove the cancer itself. And the radiology is making sure everything is cleaned up. Please understand that the above is my expression of what I think I understood of yesterday’s briefing. The whole program will take a minimum of four months, probably six, to administer, but the medical staff is optimistic that I can expect a complete cure.” Six weeks after that first e-mail from Bill, at my request, he provided the following update, “We got No.3 done yesterday. It was a long day. We got up at six and to bed between 1 a.m. and 2 a.m. this morning. We reviewed the results of the first two with the medical staff, and everyone felt like we were heading in the right direction. The last (hopefully) treatment is scheduled for Aug. 23rd. The removal surgery should follow that in 3-4 weeks. Then, we’ll see where we are. “Again, thanks for your support. These treatments remind me of jump week (in Airborne School). Each one is a little harder to face than the preceding ones. I REALLY, REALLY, REALLY, REALLY HATE needles, and right now feel like a human pin cushion. I am fortunate to have caught the thing relatively early and that it’s a not an overly aggressive type of cancer. I am really fortunate to have the assistance of my son’s and his wife’s five years of cancer experience with their son (who is now cancer free). Without their efforts, my wife and I would probably still be stumbling around in the medical hinterlands of Montgomery County, TX. “Anyway, that’s the latest. I’ll keep you updated as we troop the line. PS: Louise has been a real rock for me, too, but you knew that.” Bill Crone, always a good correspondent, emailed, “Straub Beer, the second oldest brewery in the U.S., located in St. Mary’s, PA, wanted to expand their area of distribution beyond PA and OH. So, my brother-in-law and I and four other investors elected to open a whole new beverage distributorship in Norfolk, the first new one in over 40 years, to distribute their beer and eventually other beverages. You can see our story on our Web site (, which is a work in progress. In a span of three months, we rented a warehouse, received the ABC license, accepted our first two truckloads of beer and then kicked off our business on New Market Day with a beer tasting in Norfolk. “As for me, the small deck business I had was not keeping me busy enough because of the faltering economy, and I needed another challenge, so I’ve taken a very active role in the business. I’m the financial officer, the warehouse manager, the delivery driver and often


salesman as we attempt to introduce Straub beer to VA. Our long range plans are to distribute throughout the entire Southeast and overseas. I have taken on all these roles so I will know the business inside and out and so that, when parts are turned over to others, I’ll have an intimate knowledge of all operations. “We were fortunate to have our Triple A ballclub, the Norfolk Tides, name the right field pavilion the “Straub Pavilion” (for a fee, of course) and have just gotten our beer into the Coast Guard and Navy Exchanges and are working on the Army and Air Force. As you can see on our Web site, we are adding restaurants, bars and convenience stores daily. The big difficulty is getting into the “big boxes,” such as Farm Fresh, Kroger, Food Lion, Wal-Mart, BJ’s, Costco, Sam’s Club, etc. But once we break into that circle, we’ll likely make it big. As an aside, if any of our Brother Rats have an “in” at one of these regional chains, it would really help. “So, there you have the story of entrepreneurial spirit spawned by the Institute. I guess my thought was, if the investment fails, the worse that could happen would be that we’ll have a lot of beer to drink. And that can’t be all bad! Anytime you’re in a Hampton Roads bar or eatery, John, ask for a Straub. If they don’t carry it, tell them they should.” Walt Sykes, who is helping the Keydet Club campaign for our class, sent the following: “John Thornton and I attended our first Keydet Leadership Outing on the 4th of June, along with our seasoned BR trio of Buzz Birzenieks, Don Giles and Pat Taylor. I played golf with Don, Sparky Woods and Tripp Duerson ’86, which was very enjoyable. Don and I played from the veteran’s tees and did our best to hold up the team. We played Captain’s Choice format. Our team shot a 64, a good number, but not good enough to win any monies. Alas, our putters were cold. Pat Taylor also played golf and was teamed with three alumni from the class of ’73. John Thornton shot sporting clays, and Buzz played tennis with his dyke, Paul Bouis ’67, in the indoor air conditioned W&L courts. Does this sound too hard to handle? Later that evening, we went to a fabulous buffet dinner to include your favorite beverages at Moody Hall. John wished he could have eaten more. Next year, he plans to not eat for a few days before. John and I stayed with Buzz and Jane; we had breakfast the next day with Pete Mazik, who was doing well. It was a great couple of days.” Hank and Elizabeth Cronin spent a weekend with John and Ronnie Thornton at the latter’s waterfront cottage with 15 acres on a tributary of the Rappahannock River in Virginia’s Northern Neck. Hank reported, “They have

had their vacation home for about 25 years, so John is quite familiar with the area. John hunts and fishes on his property, and we were invited to spend the weekend (July 30-Aug. 1) with him. Ronnie was busy with a horse event and could not join us, but John brought his beautiful golden lab, Clipper. We had a lot of fun talking “VMI talk,” drinking, eating, boating and looking for various waterfowl. We saw about 25 eagles and numerous osprey, egrets and hawks. The weather was just perfect, and we had a great time. John took us several miles up and down the river by boat, and we passed a cottage that is owned by Walt and Karen Sykes, as well as one that was formerly the property of John Cummings. The area is very rustic – with few people – a perfect location for a retirement weekend get-away.” We leave soon for Lexington for the 50th Matriculation Reunion (Aug. 25-26). Those planning to attend are Sherrel and me, the Davises, Birzenieks, Cronins, Brittinghams, Muneras, Duncans (Floyd), MacDonalds, Warrens (George) and Pete Mazik. Others have shown an interest. More on our “doings” in the next class note. After the Russia mini reunion in Sept.-Oct., no further trips are finalized. The Kitchens are looking at Australia/New Zealand. The Muneras are looking into the Greek Isles, and Frank Parker is thinking about a trip to the Holy Land. All are thinking about 2011 and 2012 and are hoping BRs will join them. They will send out details as those events fill in with more detail. If you have an interest in any of these trips, contact them directly. Thanks to everybody for their input and support.


Mickey Finn

It is mid August here in Wilmington as I assemble these notes and work with your committee on the finishing touches for our 45th Reunion. What a great team, headed by Charlie Russell and composed of Granny Amos, Bob Deaderick, Jeff Wilkins, Easley Moore, Dees Stallings, Donny White, Mike Friski and Chuck Hough. Please accept this “Old Yell” and our thanks to you all for the success of this reunion weekend. Wayne Chiles writes, “I look forward to seeing everyone at the reunion and really appreciate all that you do to keep us ‘pumped.’ It’s hard enough just keeping us ‘pumping.’ Also appreciate the guys who are working to pull off this event. Hope they don’t go to too


CLASS NOTES much trouble; the only real requirements are beer=cool; food=hot, at least, in most cases. I need to share a funny story about our BR Bob Deaderick. For some years, I have been involved with Rotary in Springfield, and for several years, just ended, served as an assistant governor. Bob assumed the role of president of his club on July 1, 2009. For some reason, he couldn’t find an appropriate person to induct him. So, he asked me, even though he has two past governors and an AG in his club. Of course, I was delighted and had a wonderful evening. I saw Bob again at our District Conference – in fact, had to loan him a tie for the big banquet. I asked how his year had been and was surprised that he felt it had been a major disappointment – infighting, not getting things done, etc. Of course, I was sorry to hear that, knowing he had put a lot of energy into the role. The upshot came later that evening when his club was awarded the honor of Best Club in the District. Way to go, Brother Rat! Bob wrote: “Hope all is well with you, Jane and your family. We celebrated my birthday, as always, together with both kids, their spouses and our five grandkids at Sandbridge Beach. Praise the Lord, life is good.” John Hill had a brain tumor removed 9/20/05 and has been under treatment ever since. Here is an update from the Caring Bridge Web site: “John’s brain cancer situation has been in limbo since his May 4th MRI. It showed a tiny spot, and while the neurooncologist at Duke and his oncologist here both said it was probably not anything to worry about, of course we did to some extent. They wanted another MRI done in five weeks, which happened on June 15th, and that one continued to show the same tiny spot. Again, they weren’t too concerned but did order another MRI plus a PET scan in six weeks, which took place on July 27th. We are delighted to report that no cancer activity was found, so he will return to his regular schedule -- MRIs every four months and a visit to Duke every year, with our next visit already set for January 2011. You can follow John’s progress at: http:// Phil Taylor was unable to make it to our reunion, but he did send this note: “My son, Marshall (age 14), is scheduled to receive a kidney transplant at the University of Michigan Hospital in Ann Arbor, MI, on Sept. 2nd. Consequently, I will not be able to join with our class for the 45th Reunion in Lexington. Please ask our BRs to say a prayer for Marshall and his donor, Karen Tyner. We will post details on his Web site:” Al Orgain had a great summer – check out this description: “Jan and I just returned from two weeks in Alaska by planes, trains, ferry, van, foot and float plane. We were in commo w/

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Mike McBride while there, and he guided us by phone and e-mail to some great places, but we were never able to make it to his Wilderness Lodge at Kachemak Bay. You should check out his Web site at www.AlaskaWildernessLodge. com, for it looks like a fabulous place. He told me that his daughter, Shannon, is running the place now and keeping him busy. We should be at reunion … see you then.” And speaking of Michael McBride, he opines: Hey Mickey, thought you might like to see this link – opening of the $ll0 million Smithsonian Arctic Studies Center in Anchorage. (I’m an emeritus member of the Smithsonian’s National Board; served six years in D.C.) Just back from my morning run. Huge fresh brown bear tracks just above the high tide line, bigger than the size 11 cannery boots I run in. (Running in sand in boots makes the tongue hang out!) We are alive and well these 41 years, living remote in Alaska. A recent feature in Coastal Living Magazine drew a few shots across our bow from Bro’ Rats and other alums. This reminds me of happy visits by Jimmy Sinclair many years ago, coach Clark King with Jerry Eggleston ’51 and other Keydets over these four decades. Bumped into our Bro Rat Karl Zeller when I was at a board meeting of the ‘international voice of wilderness,’ The Wild Founda-

tion in Boulder. Neither of us knew the other was involved. Gee, but it was great to see him, full of enthusiasm and good energy! Every four years, our Wild board convenes an international UN-like gathering focused on world wilderness. I brought the 8th World Wilderness Congress to Alaska in 2005 – l,200 delegates from 70 nations for two weeks in November. We met in Merida, the Yucutan, opened by Pres. Phillipe Calderone, similar participation and joined by Jane Goodall, Sylvia Earle and who’s who in global conservation. Sorry not to be there for the 45th, as we are still in the saddle (though my daughter and son are fully engaged and taking over the business as we convert it to a non-profit dedicated to young people’s outdoor education). Next week’s guests – the longest serving SEC chairman, Arthur Lovitt, and l5 of his associates on a think-tank retreat. We still love what we are doing and expect to continue until we drop. Best to you, yours and all Bro Rats.” While we are on Alaska, Michael Carlsen sent a nice long letter updating his move from California to Fairbanks, AK! He writes that the California state budget went “poof” and adjunct professorship at Fresno State University disappeared, making it difficult to obtain classes he wanted, so he transferred to the M.S. Geology Program at UAF. Michael reports: “… there is a down side, namely October, November, Decem-


CLASS NOTES ber, January, February and March. The daytime high actually climbs above zero by March!” I’m impressed at his desire to get another degree at our young age! Michael, thanks for the letter! Larry Umberger reports: “We spent last weekend with our son and his family in a cabin at a lake about an hour away. During our time, we took a bike ride that turned out to be about 10 miles long. The two grandchildren are growing up, and we continue to enjoy our time with them. I am still working but not sure how long, since the engineering firm I work for is nearly out of projects. Look forward to seeing you all!” Charles England brings us all up to date with this great e-mail: “Thanks for being such a loyal class agent over the years. Just a shout out to let you know what this Loyal Keydet has been up to since withdrawing in good standing in my third class year. First, I got married to my high school sweetheart, Barbara Jones, worked for a couple years at the VA State Highway Bridge Design Division and had our first child, Amy. We then moved to Blacksburg, VA, where I graduated from Virginia Tech in March 1967 with a B.S. in electrical engineering. My wife worked in Blacksburg and has a PHT (Putting Hubby Through) degree! Interesting side bar: Col. Nichols, then EE professor at VMI, was at Virginia Tech taking graduate classes while I was taking undergraduate classes there. Our second child, Chip, was born in Blacksburg in Feb. 1967. We moved to Richmond, VA, where I worked initially for Westinghouse in their Industrial Sales Division as a sales application engineer. Our third child, Andy, was born in Richmond in March 1968, followed by our fourth, a daughter, Amanda, in 1977. I am proud that all our children graduated from college. Amy from Southern Seminary College (stop your snickering), Chip from the United States Military Academy, Andy ’90 from VMI and Amanda from Meredith College in Raleigh and Baptist Theological Seminary in Richmond. Interestingly, Andy, our VMI ’90 son, recently became president of St. John’s Military School in Salina, KS. He had our own Gen. Peay ’62 out to the school this past spring to speak at St. John’s graduation. I retired early for health reasons in 2002, as regional manager for Infilco Degremont Inc., a French company, where we designed and built water and wastewater treatment systems for large industrial clients both in the U.S.A. and overseas. Our life has pretty much centered around our family and enjoying time at our home on the Chesapeake Bay. Boating and fishing are my hobbies. BR Peter Trible, the modest one, will of course say he taught me all about fishing on the Chesapeake Bay. Barbara and I have great memories of my time at VMI and her visits. I still have


memories of the mad dash back from Goshen to Sunday SRC, arriving in ranks just as the last bugle notes sounded. Usually, we had a car full of guys (Wayne Chiles, Clyde Bragg, Benny Dyer, Vince Cable and more) and their dates. We could pack a lot of bodies in a 1960 Mercury Comet. All education is certainly not book related. An Old Yell to Old Friends!” Jim Turner is now the chair of the VMI Biology Department, as he reports: “I have been back in Lexington for the last 10 years after retiring from a very rewarding career in biomedical research, first at the Wake Forrest University School of Medicine and then the University of North Texas Health Science Center. VMI offered me the Weichmeister Visiting Distinguished Chair in the Sciences and Engineering for 2001-02 to return for a year and teach in both the Biology and Chemistry Departments. Afterward, I was delighted when they offered me a full-time position as VMI’s first director for undergraduate research. At the moment, I have finished my first full year as the chair of the Biology Department. It has been a wonderful experience to be able to return to the Institute and help contribute directly to the development of its many exciting and robust academic programs. I look forward to welcoming our Brother Rats to Lexington for our 45th Reunion!” Hugh Dowdy penned a wonderful letter that started with the recognition of 43 years of marriage to Jackie. They have four children and six grandchildren with a seventh on the way. Their three boys graduated from VMI ’92, ’94 and ’00, while the oldest child, a daughter, graduated from VCU School of Pharmacy. His sons’ careers are dentist, Air Force major and pharmacy technician. The question is: Does anyone else in our class have three or more children who have graduated from VMI? Let me know! Hugh and Jackie vacation at Hilton Head in February with Brian and Joyce McNeil, and Hugh reports they often see BRs Doug Thomas, Bob Law, Jack Cook, Steve Smith, Wayne Chiles and Irwin McCumber. All seem to agree that “the older we get – the better we were”! What a great letter. It arrived on Saturday with these notes due on Monday. Timing is everything! Bill Donsbach sent a nice note of regret that his health will not allow him to travel to reunion, but he will be there in heart, mind and spirit, sending all his best to everyone. Bill and Dale enjoy the South Carolina climate from the edge of a golf course in Murrells Inlet. Bill, Jane and I hope to get down to see you both before this is in print! To all of you who attended our 45th Reunion, we hope you had a great time and will certainly be back for out 50th! To those who could not

make it, please make plans to be there for our 50th Reunion. Thank you for all the support and kindnesses you have given me as your class agent. But mostly, I want to thank you for your support of VMI and your Brother Rats of the class of ’65!, ’65!, ’65!


Al Carr Albert Conner

We received the results from last year’s annual giving campaign in August. I sent out an e-mail report to those class members I have e-addresses for. Here it is for the rest. I’m proud to report that our great class came through once again for dear old VMI at 58.75% participation (first overall in our peer group of 20 classes) and with $326,695 in total giving (third in our peer group). In hard financial times, you again stepped up to help VMI make it through another year while emphasizing excellence in education, athletics and military. It is truly an honor to be a part of such a class of patriots and loyal alumni. Thank you for your generosity and expressions of support. The e-mail gave a more complete report. If you’d like to see it, contact me at the e-address above, and I’ll forward a copy. Considering how challenging this year looked last November, the VMI alumni en masse also came through, generously contributing a total of $2.5 million to the Foundation Fund; $1.7 million to the Keydet Club Scholarship Fund; and $1.6 million to the Athletic Operations Fund. The entire alumni participated at 34%. This generosity fills in important operations and program support which is not provided by state or federal funding. The largest single source of revenue now is tuition and fees, and as parents and grandparents, we know what burdens those impose on families. But keep in mind that now over 80% of the cadets are getting financial support – so that funding must also come from VMI Foundation support, as well. That’s why we’re each so important to the effort and why the Institute appreciates our support so much. Incidentally, let me also express the appreciation of one alumnus to Brother Rats Tom Slater and John Jumper for their tireless efforts on behalf of VMI on the Board of Visitors. I can’t think of two better people to help the old school through tough times. They and the superintendent and large supporting cast are all in the Conner family prayers. Cliff Crittsinger, who we are proud to share with ’64, called me on June 15th to let me know he’s been retired now from the Naval Air Systems Command for 3.5 years and is moving to


CLASS NOTES Colorado. As we talked, he told me a previously unknown great story about how he left the Institute and fought to get back in and graduate with us. It turned out that Gen. G.R.E. Shell ’31 told him when he left that, while it was commendable that he wanted to continue schooling and return, that wasn’t going to happen and couldn’t happen. Nevertheless, Cliff persevered, got his grades in good order and reapplied – meanwhile, he managed to go through Ring Figure in a tuxedo (he had also chaired ’64’s Ring Committee). In the end, Gen. Shell went to bat for him, the Academic Board let him back in and the rest is history. He joined us, became a valued member of the Corps (A Co.) and our class, and was a terrific president of the International Relations Committee, while working hard at the PX and on blood bank campaigns. Cliff graduated with us in ’66, went into the Army and, per the Register, earned a Silver Star and Soldier’s Medal for valor in the process. Cliff’s another example that the Spirit of VMI is not just about football games, and I’m honored to share a class-side of our ring with him. Speaking of which, Cliff told me that he and a group of his ’64 BRs were putting together a proposed New Market Legacy Award (NMLA) in which the first class would vote for the best representative of the Brother Rat-spirit in that class and in the tradition of the New Market Corps. You will recall that ’64 were the New Market centennial class, and they are hoping to make the first presentation at their 50th Reunion to the class of 2014, the 150th anniversary class of New Market. Well, I presented some things I’d learned about the New Market boys and VMI’s Civil War soldiers and sailors. He then asked me to join with them at a July 24th meeting at “Danton,” Mike and Marisa Murphy’s (class of ’64) beautiful farm in Orange County, VA. Cliff’s pretty persuasive, so I said “yes,” wondering dimly how or if I would be received as “on-message” by our elders. The introductions were a hoot (the down-side of a good memory), as I relived flashbacks of “Meet Your Cadre”day 1962. I had “met” many of them before in the dark recesses of VMI, and it all somewhat recalled Days of the Rat. However, I must tell you, I haven’t enjoyed many days more than hanging out with those welcoming and interesting guys. I gave them my pitch on New Market Corps perspectives, and we had a great time reminiscing about VMI, Vietnam, Civil War history, etc. On the other end of the spectrum, Cadet Michael Curt Herron ’11, a member of today’s Corps and a first-rate Civil War student and New Market re-enactor, also worked with their committee and added modern relevance to the reveries. I listened to their discussions on the award for the rest of the day, and I was impressed! I certainly wish them well in pulling

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the proposal together, selling it to the Institute and making it work. As a related exercise, I’d ask you to seriously cogitate about who YOU would consider the best representative of the Brother Rat-spirit and the New Market Corps legacy in our class, if we were voting in 1966. I’d bet we’d get some interesting nominees and stories. I also heard from Cliff in August. While on his way to Colorado, he stopped in Lexington and stayed with Woody and Lori Sadler. After proclaiming them “excellent hosts,” Cliff related, “Woody and I (along with Sandy Morrison) were roommates our first class year.” He planned to visit and work on the NMLA at the Institute for a few weeks before continuing his trek west. While there, he also planned to speak with the leadership of the class of 2011 to get their input on the award and listen to their ideas for selecting a BR recipient in today’s Corps. And speaking of legacy, in June I heard from Al Carr. He and Jim Szymanski presented the Lattin Award at the VMI annual awards ceremony. The award honors our Brother Rat John Lattin, who was KIA in Vietnam. As Moby relates: “The Lattin Award, an engraved Beretta service pistol with belt, holster and ammo pouches, is given each year to the highestranking Army cadet who will go Airborne Ranger. As you probably know, Johnny and I roomed together from our second night at VMI until we graduated. He was killed in Vietnam, while leading a Long Range Patrol in December of 1967. I have had the honor of presenting the award since Col. Lattin [John’s father, who established the award] died in the mid 1990s. I had to miss two years, but John Sharkey and Jim Pauls, who also roomed with Johnny, were able to fill in. This year, Jimmy and Kathleen Szymanski were our guests in Lexington, and Jimmy was kind enough to join me in the presentation. I’ve kept in touch over the years with some of those who’ve won the award. They’re an impressive bunch.” I asked Al if he could tell me something about this year’s winner. He replied: “The cadet who won the Lattin award this year is Weston Whitcomb ’10, a history major from Indianapolis, IN. In talking with him, what drew him to VMI was a member of his church from the class of ’94. He found out that Whitcomb was interested in a military school, talked him into a visit and Whitcomb says he was sold.” Not mentioned in the note is that Al had a brick placed in John’s memory with our class section in front of Barracks. The memories which link the past to supporting, encouraging or inspiring present and future cadets are the most cherished. Memories are wonderful things. I received an e-mail from Ken Petrie with an interesting ac-

count: “While out and about today, I stopped by the local PO to pick up mail. When I got back to the car, I took a few moments to sort through the bills (!). While so engaged, a gent who appeared to be about my age or a few years my senior came up to my window and asked, ‘Are you VMI, class of ’66?’ I was driving my ’90 Accord (mileage 300K+… a story in itself), and he was pointing to the sticker on the left rear quarter-pane which dates to sometime shortly after our 25th Reunion. When I answered yes, the guy said, ‘I’m class of ’63!’ I asked his name, and he said, ‘George Blood.’ It was none other than ‘Mung’ Blood, Band Co. second lieutenant and drum major our Rat year. Well, the first half of it, anyway, as George got hitched over Christmas furlough and preceded his BRs to greener pastures (to paraphrase his entry in the yearbook). Upon hearing his name, I yelled, ‘George Blood,’ told him not to move, jumped out of the car and gave him my name! I won’t try to kid you that we were great friends at the Institute, but he was one of the good guys and a terrific musician to boot. And he did remember me, or at least put on a good show of doing same. Well, we traded some memories, and I mentioned the get-together I’d had a few years back here locally with Mike Warring ’63 and my old dyke, Bob Earle ’63. George is living here now and of course pals around with Mike on a regular basis. … Always fun to come upon someone from back in the day. You know, ‘the Old Corps,’ before the place became a country club, etc. etc.!” (All are class of ’63.) It was Memorial Day when Ken wrote, and he added: “This weekend, I’m sure that your thoughts, like mine and those of all our class, will be on our BRs who gave all.” Heard from Dave Pinkus in July. He and Carol are living at Cedar Creek Lake, TX, and “loving the lake life.” In mid July, they were taking their grandson to Washington, D.C., and the Old Dominion, including Lexington. Their grandson is, provisionally-speaking, appointed to the class of 2020, and they want to show him the sights of Lexington. They’re starting the indoctrination early and with my compliments. Our granddaughter, Hannah, is also provisionally in 2020, and grandson Drew is in 2021, while grandson Liam is in 2025, and granddaughter “X” (unknown, not named after our BR “X.” Parsons) is in a class to-be-determined-later. My problem is that all four parents are die-hard Virginia Tech Hokies. My main tactical plan is to wait till they hit the age of reason and puberty and then plant the idea that it would be a great way to irritate their parents and rebel by going to “Grandpa’s school.” When I started to write these notes, I merely expected to see and pull together some random blurbs and thoughts. Instead, and frankly


CLASS NOTES to my astonishment, I found some amazing insights as to what makes VMI so great. Ties to legacy, memory and to each other – family, friends, our class and those classes which touched our lives at various points, and classes beyond our frames of reference -- all inextricably bound together by what Mr. Lincoln eloquently termed “mystic cords of memory.” May it ever be so. Beyond that, I don’t have much news to cover A.D. June-August 2010. I hope that means everything is coasting along well in all your lives and that you are all healthy and well and looking forward to September 2011 in Lexington. As ever, your proud class agent and Brother Rat … Take care.


Jan Abernathy

I begin with heartiest congratulations to Randy Blanks as he assumes the position of president, VMI Alumni Association. His long time volunteerism and support for all aspects of the Alumni Association are now culminated in the leading position for all alumni. And Anne Blanks also deserves recognition for her support of Randy and VMI. Together, they are representing all alumni with dignity and with a strong sense of purpose to continue guiding VMI toward a great future. Lead on, Brother Rat! I received a number of new contacts regarding Gene Touchstone’s and Dennis Graves’ services. By now, all will have read the messages received and forwarded to Debbie regarding Gene. In a minute, I will have more and a message from Debbie. The Arlington National Cemetery service for Dennis was spectacular in its simplicity and in the numbers who were able to attend. As a class, we had weeks to prepare for Dennis’ service, and the Internet reached many BRs who had been quiet for years. Nearly 40 BRs, 16 of our wives and sweethearts, 14 of his family members from all over the U.S. and a VMI piper (Richard Sharp ’13), his mom and his Sweetheart were in attendance. We laughed and shed some tears, enjoyed a mini-reunion, and shared our love and respect for Dennis with his family who were, quite honestly, blown away by our presence. Carole and Bob Green could not make the service, but Carole sent VMI red, white and yellow flags for BRs to carry and leave at the site or at the graves of other BRs and VMI men. Binny Peay ’62 signed a leather-bound, gilt-edged copy of The Institute and dedicated it to the family. We all also signed the book in the fly leaf. At some point in an e-mail, I referred to the day as a


celebration of Dennis’ life. I believe it was, but I have been questioned on this. My response is not for publication in the AR, as much of it will be personal and sensitive to my respect for Dennis, but I will eventually send a letter to all BRs as to Dennis’ life and his military service. It was a hard life right up until his passing. Doug Berry: “Unfortunately, I will not be able to attend the services for Dennis. Please give my regards to Bruce Bodner. Dennis, Bruce, and I were dykes for the Bravo Co. (class of ’64) staff. Dennis Graves was my friend. I cherish our last phone call. He will be missed.” A final message regarding Dennis is from Tom Engelman: “Oh, my … well, I always hoped to be back in touch with Dennis. Dennis is among the few BRs I knew well enough to remember as beautiful.” Tom’s handwritten letter (no phones, no Internet, no running water and no electricity at his home) is full of poignant messages. It is a clear reminder to me that we all need to check in with our Brother Rats. Before our next reunion, I will set up a system for us to find and contact the dozens of BRs who are on the “lost list” for 1967. (Editor’s Note: The obituaries for Gene Touchstone and Dennis Graves appeared in the Taps section of the 2010-Issue 3 Review.) Ken Chun: “I was on Gene Touchstone’s foursome at our 40th Reunion Golf Tournament. I had never played golf in my life, and poor Gene had to tolerate my shoddy play. However, I got bit by the golf bug, and I promised Gene I’d be back at the 45th to show him I was serious about golf. Long story short … I retired from United Technologies this past March, and I’ve been on the golf course or practice range ever since. I had my first series of lessons in May, and I’ll go back for a second series from the PGA pro at Sahalee Golf Club. Every day I’m out there, I think of Gene, knowing that he’s watching my swing.” As I write these last tributes to our BRs, I cannot put my hand on the note I received from Debbie Touchstone. In it, she thanks ’67 for their support and the kind memories shared about Gene and how he touched so many lives with his positive attitude. And she adds that his family and the grandchildren will always stay in touch with VMI. Vernon Knuckles sent a postcard from Rio speaking about the run-up games for the World Cup soccer games. Randy Heneberger sent me a check to make certain I would pick up foreign change coins on my next overseas trip, after I teased him in this column last spring. I think he feels we are globetrotters. Thanks, Randy, but I put the check into the ’67 account. If and when we travel overseas again (averaging once every 10 to 12 years), I promise to secure coins for your collection. Max Toch sent me a great “Red Neck Church” story that began with “Opening Day of Deer Season,” which is considered an

official church holiday. Barrett Graham and Bob Poland continue to load me up with e-mail jokes. Many are side-splitting, but I cannot forward many of them. Wayne Marshall sends me everything Tom Gritzmacher passes along. From these BRs, I get a lot of funny stuff, often with a strong political bent of one sort or another. As I have learned the hard way, some among us on both sides of the political issues surrounding our daily lives just cannot enjoy a fun poking at the “other” side, so I don’t forward the e-mails. And speaking of e-mail, if you want to be in the ’67 loop for electronic contact and you’re not already getting ’67 messages, please send me your e-mail address. This includes your changes of server. I understand why some do not want to clutter their system with non-business mail. So, send me a personal contact, and tell me you only want to hear the “important” stuff from the class. And as it was important for Ron Lowry to ask, I received an answer to our late ’60’s tuition costs: $2000.00-ish. Phil Gioia: “Got my Pathfinder keyed today. Only thing that might have incensed the wrath of the coward that did it is the Purple Heart license plate. It gets harder and harder to live out here in the Bay Area – there is such a collection of ingrates, Quislings-in-waiting and cowards that it overshadows the solid types. I’m giving the keynote at the Memorial Day ceremony at the National Cemetery at the Presidio – will think of you all and remember those we served with and those who went before us. All the best; all the way.” Ray Irvine asked me for contact information on Stan Waskiewicz, as he and his son were going to be driving through Ohio. In a second message, he said the trip was postponed, as Anne was due to have a hip replacement. I am still waiting for photos from Europe trips from Jo Stafford and Tom Gritzmacher … and Terry Moore’s Alaskan cruise. Richard Stanard and I exchanged e-mails bemoaning retirement age … he can retire, and I cannot afford to. Richard says, “In August when I turn 65, I have private pension benefits kicking in. That, plus my social security, will take the heat off as far as income is concerned. Then, full retirement from the working world will become reality for me. It has been a bumpy ride, but I know I’m not the only one by far, and I know my Institute background has supported me constantly through it all.” Mel Wright wrote to ask what time Friday parades begin, as it is not easily found on the VMI Web site. Friday parades are at 1635. He plans to take his grandsons to one and a football game. Dave Neel checked in with a new e-mail. Howard Seal also sent me a message that his granddaughter is dating a cadet, and he wants to take her to Lexington this fall. He asked if there was any special procedure to visit Moody Hall, and


CLASS NOTES I assured him there was none. (I think Howard for provisional appointments. Guess I should do passing of her dad and uncle. My mom faded has the only granddaughter old enough to be the same for the two girls. Looking forward to away peacefully on Saturday, Aug. 7th, at the dating anyone!) Pete Wells sent me an article Mardi Gras and wondering if the VMI band will age of 88. I made an emergency 3-day trip about Roger Staubach and his actions regarding return with your pipers. They charmed everyone home to Hawaii to say my goodbyes as she lay a flight Roger was on with some wounded solin Mobile!” Class agent’s note: While they are in Hospice. Those people are truly the angels of diers – about giving up his seat in first class. I not MY pipers, Joan and I claim them anytime our country. (Class agent’s note: Bob Green’s recall the game in 1964 where VMI held Roger we can. At the military tattoo in Florida a couple mom passed in April. Joan’s dad passed in June. to minus yardage for the only time in his entire of years ago, Joan was cheering and hollering I encourage all of us to take the time to collect football career. He spoke of VMI defense with when the VMI Regimental and Pipe Bands took family memories while we can.) Our summer humility that day, and I have always considered the field. So loud, in fact, that a lady behind us in has been a roller coaster ride like yours. We had him a class act. Pete also sent this contact for the stands asked, “Which one of those cadets are to cancel our planned trip to New England for the latest veterans’ information: yours? “Her response was, “All of them!” a series of operations to Monica’s right knee. opa/publications/benefits_book.asp. Ome Jack Sheeran sent me a new e-mail contact. She had a torn meniscus which caused a cyst Crawford said he has been hacked and to disre- After 38 years of teaching, he was not certain to grow in the back of her knee. Mostly, this gard info from him regarding medical suppliers. how it would feel come September when he was caused from running/racing too many hard I regret to report that there was a serious fire would not be in the classroom. Patty retired a downhill races, not to mention 15 marathons. at the Southern Inn. It happened in mid-July couple of years ago. By the time you read this, She’s back to walking a mile, and she’ll start when VMI was not in session, except for sumthey will have seen many of us at the Army/ teaching on schedule. The good news or fun mer classes. VMI football game. And both Dixie and Bev that we had this summer is we were able to Terry Moore: “Got the Alumni Review today and Walker and Ed Maxwell have offered to share be volunteers at the U.S. Senior Open Golf realized I haven’t sent an update in quite a while. their homes for the Gardner-Webb/VMI game Tournament at Sahalee CC here in Seattle. Our Our next reunion is in 2012, correct? When? I on 20 Nov. (Joyce has not checked in on this.) love to Joan, and I’ll see you guys in 2012. If want to get it on the schedule so I finally attend And this issue should arrive before that game, Monica’s not in school, she’ll make the trip to one before I kick the bucket. Probably won’t so e-mail me with any last minute additions the 45th. Aloha.” recognize anyone there, but I am coming. Let to the party. I sent an e-mail to all from Mike I will close these notes with a brief review me know if I can help with the planning chores. Bagnulo but have not received any answers of how Joan and I were able to get away for a (Class agent’s note: It will be the first reunion yet. “Jan: Does anyone know why the movie few days and try to recover from being apart weekend in early September but the dates are not Grey Garden opens with the ‘VMI Spirit’? It from 1 Feb. until 17 June – she was her dad’s yet set by VMI. And those on the planning com- is also played several times during the movie.” 24/7 caregiver by her choice. Toward the end, mittee need to remember he is volunteering!) The Anyone have a clue on this? Bob Hess is due to Hospice was a tremendous source of informaupdate: As you know we’ve retired in Daphne, pass through Atlanta in a few days (late August) tion and care. As Ken states above, those who AL, and love it. While not on the water [Mobile on his 7,700-mile motorcycle tour of the U.S. provide the Hospice service are angels. Joan’s Bay or the gulf], we are across the street from the We were roomies for three years, but I have health and wellness parent company has a water [Mobile Bay] and have easy access with a not seen him since graduation and am looking conference in Salt Lake City every other year. neighbor or with our association pier. Last year, forward to a visit. Tom Coughenour is trying to We usually fly out early and camp, while rock we had several jubilees, as I believe I mentioned meet up with us, also. hounding for a hobby. Too tired to camp this in another update. So far this year, we’ve had a Ken Chun: “Our condolences to Joan on the year, so we stayed in B&Bs mostly and saw couple – lots of crab and shrimp. much of south and east central NeDon’t be concerned; we are too vada. Drove the “Celestial Highway,” far up the bay to have any oil ispassed near Area 51, saw Lehman sues. But the oil crisis isn’t the big caves in Baxter, NV, at the Great problem – it’s our congress [both Basin National Park, paid to dig for sides] … We’ve purchased a boat turquoise in Tonapah and then found and are beginning to really enjoy that the real expense was having the it. It is a 26-foot Everglades center finds made into jewelry. At least all console which is good for fishing of our Christmas presents are set. We and some water sports, like tubing. rented a GM 4-wheel drive vehicle, Glad to see the article on Gene since we planned to spend so much Touchstone. He was a great guy, time off-road. The vehicle was great, and I am sorry to lose him so early. but the U.S.-made tires were not. We Beth and I are planning to go on an had a flat in a mountain pass around Alaskan cruise on the ship Silver 8000 feet on a less than dirt track. Shadow. I bought a new camera You could see 100 miles down the [Nikon D5000] for the trip and am valley (nothing to see, though), and practicing to be certain I get some it was around 25 miles to the nearest great photos. They have all sorts paved road – no cell service. I have of shore excursions – fly fishing, changed a lot of tires (and tank treads remote adventures, town tours and in my youth), but that GM system Class of 1967: Celebrating their kinship as the only VMI much more. It will be fun, and was a 2-hour challenge. We were very grades in Daphne, Alabama, were, from left, Terry Moore, we’ll be worn out on our return. pleased to be able to limp back to Ed Knowling ’65 and Beth Moore. I’ve signed up my two grandsons the Hidden Canyon Ranch where we

2010-Issue 4


CLASS NOTES were staying. Robin and Doctor Crouch (he is a urologist) were our hosts, and we felt a connection with their place and their personalities. It really is hidden (six miles from the paved twolane highway 21 near Garrison, NV) and quiet. Mule deer were grazing in the field by the lodge when we arrived the first night. And their “pet” llama, Morey, was guarding the place. They have a conference center with all of the lodging and meeting space one would need, in addition to the lodge, and a pool and trout stream and the clearest sky for star-gazing and much more. I slept like a rock. We recommend this place for a true get-away, but I will add that most access is by roads with signs that state things such as “No services for the next 150 miles.” And gas in the area was often as much as $3.19 per gallon for 85 octane. On many corners in Nevada, even in remote places, there were signs referring to Harry Reid’s upcoming re-election bid that were not complimentary. By the time this reaches you, we will know if those signs had any effect on Nevada voters. If you would like to see your name in this column, you probably need to send me some news – something. And photos can go directly to Traci Mierzwa in the AR offices at tracim@ If you send them to her, it cuts out any loss of clarity from multiple transfers. Be certain to identify the people by name and class year and add a short caption to the photo, so all will know who and what is being shown. We get five photo spots each issue. Let us use them … Jan

Tom Hickey


Ron Gallagher

I closed the last set of notes with an e-mail from Tom Norment (Williamsburg, VA). This time, I’ll start with Tom. He wrote in mid May, “On May 6, I held my 18th annual Golf and Clam Bake fund raiser in Williamsburg and was really gratified that BRs Rich Wallach (Middleburg, VA), Chandler Williams (Midlothian, VA) and Rick Siegel (Bethesda, MD) came as a foursome sans Kevin Henry (Winston Salem, NC) who was a last minute cancellation. Had a lot of VMI support with Bo Bowles ’60 who I befriended when we both served on the VMI Foundation with Gen. Peay ’62 who brought a foursome including his son who is a member of the class of 1987. Also, Gil Minor ’63, the


former president of the VMI BOV, was extraordinarily generous in his support, along with current President Tom Slater ’66. The Institute was heard from that day!” Got a nice e-mail from Steve Wilson (Mathews, VA) who wrote, “I am still working part-time for SAIC – going on eight years now – as a senior policy analyst. Fancy title, which means I research, write, edit and prepare briefings and documents in support of the Office of the Army G-1 (Personnel). My primary focus these days is working on Deployment Cycle Support (DCS), an Army program established by directive of the Secretary of the Army to support soldiers, DA civilians and their family members during deployments of 90 days or more by providing resources and assistance with the myriad programs that exist to help them cope with the stresses of extended deployments and to build and sustain resilience. It keeps me off the streets but gives me a chance to continue contributing to our Army. We still live in Mathews, VA, where I participate as a volunteer in three organizations: vice commodore of the Mathews Yacht Club, editor-inchief of a series of books on historic homes and properties of Mathews County (for the Mathews County Historical Society), and member of the New Point Comfort Lighthouse Preservation Task Force (a county committee formed to save the third oldest lighthouse still standing in the Chesapeake Bay and the 10th oldest in America). In our free time, we travel when we can. I attended a meeting/luncheon of the Richard Henry Lee Chapter of the Sons of the American Revolution in Irvington, VA, where I met Col. (USA, Ret) Mowton (Tony) Waring who was an Army ROTC APMS and tac officer during our first two years. We enjoyed reviewing some of the more memorable events that transpired back then.” Terry Emerson (Geilenkirchen, Germany) replied to a Happy Birthday e-mail with, “Well, I am 64, as many of us are … My wife fixed a wonderful meal … scallops and lobster. We had a bottle of Lanson Rose champagne to start and cook with … followed by a bottle of RheinHessen Chardonay (not oakey!) from my vintner in the district. She was dressed to the nine’s, and we ate downstairs in our castle parlor/dining room. Spring is here, and we are getting ready to enjoy the wine festing season. Good to me!” In June 2010, Pete Farmer (Seattle, WA) wrote, “VMI graduation weekend 2010 was a lot of fun. Our son, Kyle, just completed Rat year. Tentatively, I’ll be there 2013 for his graduation AND a class reunion. Visited with roommate Skip Roberts (Lexington, VA). We were joined by George Squires (Richmond, VA) and wife Kitty Sue (her first visit) for New Market Day. Jim Burn’s (Dahlgren, VA) son

just graduated, but despite looking for Jim that weekend, we never connected. I was hoping to do a change of command for a BR with a current cadet. Jay Slaughter (Wilsonville, OR) and Larry Stetson (Tacoma, WA) were at our home Nov. 22 for a Pacific NW Chapter meeting. Patty and I see Bob and Lissa McDowell (Friday Harbor, WA) periodically and have visited with John and Martha VanLandingham (Eugene, OR).” In August, Pete wrote, “VMIAA Pacific Northwest Chapter held a meeting Aug. 1 at home of Bob and Lissa McDowell. I am PNW Chapter president. Larry and Lynn Stetson attended. Patty Farmer and our son, Kyle Farmer ’13, joined us.” (Editor’s Note: See photos taken at this chapter event in the Association News section.) A letter asking for donations prompted Ken Pennington (Amelia Island, FL) to respond, “Skip Harding (Tampa, FL) and I were the only two ’68s that completed three years in the baseball program, and I’ve been watching their success over the past few years. My sports experience at VMI led to a brief but memorable career as a high school head coach. I have not seen the new Gray-Minor field, and it’s on my bucket list. I think we only played 18 or so games our first class year, and I’m amazed at these 60+ game schedules. Wish I could take all those trips now.” Jim Burns, in response to the same letter, wrote, “We just returned from St. Martin on our annual family trip. My 31-year-old son, 27year-old son and wife, and my 25-year-old son (VMI ’07) all came down. The only missing son was the 22-year-old (Sloan, VMI ’10), since he is hiking the Appalachian Trail from Maine to Georgia to ‘shake out the four years at VMI.’ See you soon – maybe at a football game.” Larry Ryan (Winchester, VA) also responded with, “I’m adjusting to life in Virginia. I no longer chase cars through stop signs and red lights when I see a VMI sticker. And I’m no longer surprised when they serve apple butter and spoon bread. Life in Winchester is pleasant. I had the opportunity to visit VMI for New Market Day. I drove down with a colleague from work (Army Corps of Engineers) – Bill Ryals ’76. The ceremony was moving, as was expected; the Corps looked great. We toured Third Barracks, told each other a few stories (we nodded in polite agreement to each other’s adventures, while wondering how much exaggeration had crept in). We had a great lunch at the Southern Inn and stayed for the baseball game that evening. I see Dean Kershaw (Hamilton, VA) on his occasional forays back from the Mideast and hope to visit him in Dubai in July.” Later in June, Jim Henry (Williamsburg,


CLASS NOTES VA) sent along a change of address with the following explanation: “We bought a lot in Ford’s Colony back in 2001 and began building in September. That will be our retirement home, with lots of biking and golf in the plan. This keeps us in Virginia, close to the grandkids and not too far from our northern Virginia roots. I will be working for a while, given the economy.” In a short e-mail, John Andrews (Yorktown, VA) wrote, “I am still working. We merged with PNC, so I am managing a PNC Mortgage branch here in Newport News. Diane and I have our first grandson, Lincoln Davis, class of 2031.” Steve Powers (Malvern, PA) replied to a birthday e-mail with, “My wife and I are doing well with our four married daughters and nine (9) grandchildren. So many gifts to buy with so little time and money! It is my privilege to see Gil Piddington (Downingtown, PA) and Frank Pinizzotto (Newark, DE) from time to time here, near Philadelphia. They always like to share the old stories and a few new ones.” And Bill Todd (Springfield, VA) replied, “Kathy and I are still in Springfield, VA, where I continue to work for Boeing, running their contracts and pricing activities for the Boeing Strategic Missile & Defense Systems. I have been spending a lot more time in Huntsville, AL, lately, since we moved the division HQ down there. Kathy is doing well, working a lot of church related activities, especially running the nursery where we have added many new babies lately. Must be something in the church water!!! Brittane, our youngest daughter, is in the second year of her master’s program at West Virginia University and our youngest son, John, is a senior there, majoring in business administration with an emphasis in marketing. He is looking to get an internship this summer with Universal Films in L.A. where my son-in-law is their V.P. of Theater Relations. There is nothing like networking within the family. My oldest son, Bracken, and his wife, Lauren, are staying with us while he commutes to Patuxent River, MD, working in the Naval Air Systems Command Contracting Intern Program. Since he thinks his next assignment will be in the Washington area, they are waiting to get a place here until that is finalized. He and Lauren have taken possession of our basement and have their own apartment down there. Kathy and I will be looking to build our “Dream Retirement Home” on the property we bought near the Wrightsville Beach/Wilmington, NC, area a few years ago. It is a gated community called Landfall right on the inland waterway and about six minutes from the beach. My ultimate goal is to get a wave runner and significantly improve my golf handicap. Now, if we could just get the price of Boeing stock back where it was three years ago!”

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Clay Thompson (Salisbury, MD) e-mailed, “Donna and I are still trying to ‘get through’ the loss of our second son last June at age 28. Our other son is doing OK in York, PA. We have no real trips planned, except we hope to make Rat Parade in September and continue to play some ‘bad golf’ in our area.” Arnold Ellis (Richmond, VA) wrote, “All’s well here in South Side Richmond. Nuttin’ new - just enjoying retirement. I keep busy repairing small engines and bicycles. I’m into my second year as a gardener, waiting for them ’maters to ripen.” And Craig Smith (Roswell, GA) wrote, “My wife, two sons and two grandchildren (ages 1 and 3) are all doing well here in Atlanta. My wife and I just returned from a two-week trip to China. It was with a group from VCU, to which my brother and his wife (who were also part of the tour) have a connection. Being in the construction business, it was very interesting to see the tremendous progress the Chinese have made in the past 20 years. I can now confirm where all the world’s scrap iron has been going!” Les Martin (Hanover, PA) put birthdays into perspective with, “I am not counting birthdays anymore; I just want to have them. So, you can relax the calls and or anything else and still feel good about yourself. My wish is not to start missing birthdays one after the other.” Jim Lambert (Columbia, MO) was looking

forward to the fall when he wrote, “Living in central Missouri in a college town has been very nice for my wife, Phyllis, and I. We have certainly enjoyed being with our two daughters and our five grandchildren. Although, I must admit, it can get a little overwhelming at times. My oldest daughter has quadruplets that turned 3 in April. My youngest daughter has a son that turned 4 in June, so you can see they all keep us busy. Phyllis and I are looking forward to a European trip this fall, along with my brother, Mike ’66, and his wife, Trisha. We hope to be able to hook up with Terry Emerson in Paris for a short visit. If anyone is traveling through Missouri and needs a place to stay between St. Louis and Kansas City, we always have a room and a cold drink.” In mid July, Chips McCallum (Norfolk, VA) sent a link to a story about a fire that damaged the Southern Inn in Lexington. He commented, “I can visualize guzzling pizza and beer to the sounds of Steppenwolf in the back room of The Inn like it was yesterday.” Dave Avery (Lyme, NH) was feeling philosophical on the occasion of his birthday when he reminisced, “Somewhere on the road to a quiet life in academia, the road took a fork. In grad school at UVa, I smoked a meerschaum pipe and wore tweed jackets with leather elbow patches. I visualized a quiet and undistinguished life of pontificating to med students about psychoactive drugs. The only

Class of 1968: At the Pacific Northwest Chapter Summer Social on Aug. 1, 2010, at the home of Lissa and Bob McDowell ’68 were, photo left, from left, Bob McDowell, Pete Farmer and Larry Stetson. Photo below: Lissa and Bob McDowell, Patty and Pete Farmer, and Larry and Lynn Stetson. See Association News section in this Review for more photos of the event.


CLASS NOTES problem with that plan turned out to be that, as a toxicologist, I was a fairly good database administrator and not an especially good lecturer. That was OK; there was a big demand in the pharmaceutical industry for scientists with computer skills, and picking up a degree in CS to give me some paper creditability was not too hard. What I didn’t realize when I made that transition was that, in general, computer people work a lot harder than faculty. First off, while a professor might lecture four hours a week and work on publications and research the rest of his time, senior geeks are expected to work 45 hours a week and be on call 7/24/365. And ‘on-call’ for these jobs means solving complex technical problems that stretch across multiple servers with different operating systems with real financial consequences, typically late at night and alone. If you do the job perfectly, no one knows you exist. “Then late in life, the kids came along and life started to change a bit more each year. At about age five, we taught them to ski and ice skate, visualizing fun family weekends at the Dartmouth Skiway and playing pond hockey. The trouble was, both got hooked on their sports: Christian on alpine racing and Meade on ice hockey. Hooked means every waking moment not devoted to staying abreast in a competitive school is focused on your sport. With 12 years of ski racing behind him now, Christian trains or races 30 hours a week in season, then relaxes in the warm months with track, cross country and 6 a.m. weight training with his personal trainer to stay in shape to race. He’s on snow about 150 days a year. Thanksgiving is 10 days of training at A-basin. Summer is training on the glacier at Mt. Hood. His life plan? World cup. Meade, with nine years of hockey, works with her trainer on the ice in the summer when she is not at a formal training camp; then in the fall swings into three-on-three hockey to prep for try-outs for placement on the peewee team in regular season; followed by spring fling hockey; and then weight training to get in shape for the summer camps. Spare time? Soccer goal tender for the U14 travel team competing all over New England. Her life plan? Starting line as center on a Division 1 team – preferably Yale – then a job in coaching. Since neither can drive yet, the wife and I split chauffer duty and coordinate training schedules on IM. “Not sure when college athletics moved from accepting walk-ons for varsity sports to expecting a decade of focused professional coaching in a kid’s chosen sport in order to be recruited. It’s all good, but retirement looks to be at least 10 years away. Neither kid will be going to VMI, not because of the military or


lifestyle, but because the Institute will never compete in Division 1 in ice hockey or ski racing. I just need to keep pushing the stone uphill for them.” Dave O’Connor (Hartfield, VA) provided the following: “All the family is well. Ryan’96 has just returned from his third deployment, this time to Afghanistan, with the 1-17th Inf, 5 Bde 2d ID, the first Styker Brigade in A’stan. They suffered significant casualties in Kandahar (22 killed) as the stopgap unit before the surge. He was the S-3 and then moved up to XO. We are headed out to Fort Lewis for their Redeployment/Memorial Ceremony and to watch our two grandchildren, while he and Erin have a little ‘us’ time. Two daughters, Kathryn and Shelley, are working in Newport News and Wilmington, NC, respectively, and doing well. I travel to Europe and Africa in support of training of EUCOM and AFRICOM staffs as a contractor working for USJFCOM in Suffolk, VA.” As I’m sure you know, we lost Bill Besenfelder back in July. George Squires wrote the touching remembrance: “Kitty Sue and I attended a lovely ‘Service of Thanksgiving’ for Bill Besenfelder Sat., July 17, at the exquisitely beautiful Grace & Holy Trinity Church (Episcopal) in downtown Richmond, VA. The church is located across from a city park, next to what was called, in the old days, The Mosque Theater – with beautiful Arabic decor. As we parked, a long-haired Ron Cowardin (Richmond, VA) came ambling up the sidewalk, and we went in together. Inside, we came across BR Dave Clark (Doswell, VA), and we all sat together. After the service, as we talked, another attendee greeted us – BR Howie Donald (Richmond, VA). Afterward, KS and I attended a reception at the Carriage Hill Apartments, where Bill was the muchbeloved (literally – he went out of his way to help people, and the folks there loved him) social director. We met Bill’s lovely and gracious wife, Nancy. Among others, we also met Bill’s son, Taylor, who had spent 36 hours on planes and in airports to get back home from a surfin’ safari (that’s the life!) in Australia. Unfortunately, we did not get to meet his new grand-daughter – born, amazingly, just three days before Bill’s passing.” (Editor’s Note: Mr. Besenfelder’s obituary appears in the Taps section of this Review.) Johnny Lester (Richmond, VA) provided a very short note: “Time to hang up the slide rule. Business is no better, and the time is right. Thoughts run from freedom to panic.” But Hal Hostetler (Portsmouth, VA) had more to say, when he wrote, “Brenda and I are busy. In July, a week at our Eastern Shore for VBS in the morning and night evangelism

with migrant Latino farm workers for a week. In September, we go to my 1968 Army Ranger class reunion at Fort Benning, GA, and in OctNov., I’ll make a music missions trip to Israel with Camp Kirkland, playing and witnessing in an orchestra to serve all through Israel. I’m playing in the Tidewater Concert Band, officer in the Military Officers Association of America, visiting the state legislature and Congress in D.C., singing in the Virginia Baptist Men’s Chorale, working in Awana, leading the church orchestra, doing lots of other stuff as the associate pastor of our church, and cutting grass. Things are pretty calm. Oh – having arthroscopic surgery for a torn meniscus.” Jack Bareford (Swainsboro, GA) provided an update which included, “As I told you, I lost my job at East Georgia College due to the grant funding for our rural center going away. So, I retired from the university system after 13 years. I am working again – started June 14th. I was asked by our city and county joint development authority to come in and help them full time. The former president quit over a contract dispute, and they needed the help. I am helping them do a search for a replacement. They asked me to consider doing the job full time, but my grandson is due Nov. 4th, so I am not interested. We plan to have a new person in place by Nov. 1st. I did tell them I would stay until we could find a good candidate, but we have quite a few good prospects, to include a couple locally, that will be good at it. My ex-wife will move down to Baton Rouge in January when my daughter in law has to return to work, and I will follow as soon as possible. I have had my house on the market since last September, and it is in a great neighborhood here, but only three people have looked at since then. May have to rent it or something so I can get down to Baton Rouge to find work there and help with the baby.” I’ll close with a note from Paul Hebert (Nairobi, Kenya): “I wanted to also let you know that I will be coming to Lexington on March 30, 2011, to address the Corps of Cadets, faculty and friends (hopefully, many BRs) and to accept officially the Jonathan Daniels Humanitarian Award. I have already received the cash honorarium of $25,000, which I have donated to the Anajali Education Trust in Nairobi, Kenya, through the U.S.A.-based NGO, the Anajali Ministries. These funds, plus $5,000 of my own, have gone to purchase of 10 acres of land outside of Nairobi, which will be the site of the new high school for graduates of the Anajali Primary School and for other slum kids who qualify. I am starting, with a few others, to raise funds for the construction and initial operation of the high school, which we hope to begin with grade 9 in January 2011.”




Walter Judd

Greetings, Brother Rats and friends of the class of 1969. Summer activities are in full swing now in the heat and humidity of eastern Virginia. Leading stories this time: we paid our last respects to Bill Blandford and exchanged a lot of talk with others about the lightning strike and burning of the Southern Inn on Main Street of Lexington. Over the past few months I have heard from several BRs that Bill Blandford of Powhatan, VA, was suffering from effects of cancer. In deference to his family, I grieved in private over the fact my good bud was leaving this earth too early. With a fall wedding for a daughter looming, I prayed he would beat the problem and take care of his family duties. It was not to be. Bill said his goodbyes and quietly passed away on 13 July. On Friday, 16 July, on a very hot day, a contingent of friends and Brother Rats attended Bill’s memorial service in the yard of his old, small Episcopal church. There was a little shade under the large trees but no relief from the heat. Bill’s Dream Team canoeing and golfing partners were all there plus a few of us admirers. Bomber Hudson gave a beautiful eulogy, remembering Bill well and giving the crowd some snickers and laughs. Thornton Newlon, Spunky Butler, John Robins, Glenn White, and Jim Baker gave Bomber support, as well as Chunky Neale, David Prugh, Joe Farrar, Win Winfree, Val Southall, Bob Waldo, Tommy Thompson, and me. Joe Farrar passed to me that his and Bill’s families have been friends and connections for four generations. When he mentioned Bill’s father, I remembered attending that funeral in the same church yard many years ago. Our VMI ties go deep. Sharing with all of us in our loss was Frank Flannigan, Bill’s canoe-mate for many James River canoe trips through the years. Those expressing regrets at the news of Bill’s passing included Charlie Bryan, Bruce Sharp, Bob Heely (a fellow Marine), Glenn Hammond (in law school at same time and place), Jim Long, Jim Chapman, Rick Mattozzi, Ken Houston, Thornton Newlon (my contact on all activities), Win Winfree (“He fought bravely: a Marine to the end and a great person. Bill and Betsy were such a remarkable and wonderful couple”), and Glenn White. Glenn’s comments about this year’s canoe trip in late June: “we stopped by to see Bill on the Thursday evening before we went to camp at the put-in. He was in excellent spirits but was obviously weak. They had brought a hospital bed that afternoon for

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him and Spunky helped them move it in and get it set up. Bill was getting tired so we thought it best to leave after about an hour. On Saturday night before the camp fire we called him and said a few greetings to him. I led the campfire and challenged/forced all to say a few words/ remembrances reference the trip through the years. All chose to say a few words about Bill! It was a little moving to say the least. In attendance were Messers Butler, White, Newlon, and Baker.” Glenn Hammond’s comments rate special notice: “Bill and I attended law school together at the University of Richmond after the Vietnam War. He was never anything but kind and hardworking. He unloaded trucks at night to help with tuition since the VA never paid us on time. On the day his father died, I told Bill I was sorry for his loss. In typical Blandford style, he said ‘Glenn, after what we saw in the war, what better way for my father to pass away than from a massive heart attack on the golf course!’ He always turned bad into good. God bless Billy Blandford and our class.“ The annual Keydet Club Leadership Outing is expanding in scope. What used to be a quick rush up the interstate has turned into a several day party. On 3 June Tom Morris and I drove over from Williamsburg and met two other Toms (Thompson and Jones) for dessert at the Sheridan Livery Inn. All experienced a true storm during the evening and noted the power outages along Main Street. Three Toms (Thompson, Morris and Jones), ‘Brell and I ate breakfast together at Redwood Family Diner, a popular place since it had power. We all joined Jim Chapman, Gary Mackey, and Jim and Beth Long for golf at the Lexington G&CC mid-morning. Ron and Betsy Wall came later for the seafood banquet dinner. Morris and I played with Col Jamison and Will Bynum. Thompson, Chapman and Jones played with Coach Sparky Woods’ brother and finished in the money in one flight. Mackey and Sebrell were teamed with Admissions Department’s Tom Mortenson and Danny Thornton ’78 and they also finished well in the other flight. When Tom and I arose early to head back home, we found Dr Jones doing his morning jog through the grounds. The fog rising over the barracks left us with an interesting photo shot. On 8 June, I talked with Dr Mike Hanna and heard about his and his wife Bobbi’s practices. He serves a medical center plus several nursing homes and she runs the AIDS clinic for NE Alabama. They have three daughters in medicine at various levels and places. He still has his old Packard and loves tinkering with it. Bob and Susan Alexander passed the word about the lightning strike at the Southern Inn in Lexington on July 9th. The interior of restaurant

and bar was completely destroyed by fire and the caving in of levels above. John Sebrell reported the owners will rebuild and be in business again in about a year. See the article with pictures: rw_article.php?ndx=17984. When I wrote the following “For all of you planning on visiting Lexington any time soon, be advised the Main Street look has changed. A fire last week extensively damaged the Southern Inn and stores on both sides. Lightning is the culprit for the late night blaze. Upper floors and roof caved in and damaged the restaurant and bar below. Appears the front structure was spared but the interior burned or was damaged.” Don Nelson replied, “How can that be? First my old 2nd class room became a Women’s shower. Then Lejeune Hall was demolished. The College Inn is gone... and now this. Is nothing sacred? Maybe it’s because they stopped serving Southern ‘frahd cheecken’?” Sorry BR, nothing remains the same. See Curs’ note below about the Big Binnie, the clocks in the clock tower of the Third Barracks. Wayne Keesee checked in looking for the dates of the annual Ride to VMI motorcycle outing. “I hope all is well with you and your family in Virginia. Rather warm up here in Connecticut, but it is July, so it’s okay with me.” I got his message at the end of July during our hottest week (when I noted the temperature on my back deck was 104.4!). Rick Mattozzi: “Although I had heard of GW’s recent death, I was not aware that Bill Blandford had also died. Thanks for letting me know about Bill. He was a good friend and I shall miss him. I suppose we have now reached an age and entered an era where more of us we may begin to leave the scene more frequently than in the past. However, with life expectancies being longer than ever before, perhaps we and our BRs will stay healthy for many years to come. At least, I hope so.” That is all the more reason to gather as a class anywhere we can. Drew Brantley rallied the troops and got five of them together for a baseball game in early August. “We met at Hooters to enjoy a few libations of our favorite malted beverage. In attendance were “Crazy” Leo Barnes, Bubba (aka T.O. Palmer), Wip Priest, Glenn White, and myself. We managed to make the game and enjoyed a great night both game- and weather-wise. We talked VMI football, baseball, whether Leo’s son would attend VMI to wrestle, how Wip’s hip replacement was doing, Bubba’s work as Chief Custodian of Supplies and Advise in the Nursing Home, politics, and the cleavage associated with several of the Hooters girls working our table. A good time was had by all.” I cannot add a single thing to that night’s fun…


CLASS NOTES Roy Swatts wrote in late May: “Our son-inlaw, Chris, is in Montana and staying at our cabin while he is taking his helicopter flight training. Attached pictures were taken a couple of days ago when he soloed. The lake is Flathead Lake. It is about 2 hours north of us. The town of Polson is just to the south east of this photo. We stayed there a couple of years ago when we went to Glacier National Park. It is absolutely beautiful and so different from anything in the eastern US. The airfield is at St. Ignacius. It is about an hour north and just outside the National Bison Refuge, another beautiful place, especially neat to see the large herds of bison in the wild. He sent us several photos of a herd of elk (anywhere from 50 to 150 at a time) that he sees almost every day. We have a deer feeder just outside the front door and several mornings it had been knocked over. He got up early one morning and found out what knocked it over: a black bear. We knew we had one coming up to the huckleberry patch on the back side of the property and national forest, but this is the first time we had seen it. We got up one day late last week and it was snowing again.” Later in early July, he continued: “We have an array of deer and turkey at our feeders every day so far. Had a nice 8-point deer two nights ago. Something has been turning over the feeder every night, so I sat out in the truck to try and get a photo of whatever it was. Finally gave up and came in, then, just before going to bed, I looked out and saw the bear. It appears to be fairly young one and did not get too concerned at our presence and picture taking. He did not show any sign of aggression; just concentrated on getting as much of the food as he could. I will wait until others get here, then start using firecrackers to keep him away.” Paul Curs wrote in early June with tales of other places. “I recently visited VMI with my wife Kathy, my oldest son Nathan, and his oldest son Dean. We checked out the new Hall of Valor. What an amazing feeling to see all those medals and so many from our class! And, to be standing there with three generations of my family was a mind-blower (as we used to say “back then.”). I asked a HOV staffer where the new clothing store was and he said, “under the clock tower” and gestured towards barracks. I must admit, I thought for a moment, “I was here for four years and ... there is a clock tower?” As we left the clothing store, the cadets were setting up the 105 howitzer to fire at 1700. I told my family of the first time that cannon was fired when we were rats. We F troopers were standing so close to it, back on that first day in August, 1965, that I just about came out of my shoes when it went off. One of those “never forget” moments.” Again later in July: “since retiring from CAL, I’ve flown to 47 airports in Europe, Africa, and the Middle East that I never thought I’d ever see


... and I’m up to 53 countries that I’ve flown to in my 40 year flying career.” Keep on flying and reporting, airline Captain Curs. Jay Hoenig from Shanghai in early June: “just received the Alumni Review and as always, enjoyed catching up on what everyone is doing. Sorry I missed Ward [Carr]; however I think he spent most of his time in Beijing, not Shanghai. I’m enclosing a picture of what I think is the only VMI decal on a car in China; could be mistaken but it’s a good bet. In your next issue, please encourage our BR’s to drop me a note if they or their families may be coming to China. Been here 15 years and might be able to offer them some unique ideas who, what and where to go in both business and social endeavors. Besides working on fraud and corruption investigations in China and the Asia Region, I spend a lot of time cycling, golfing and charity work with young people. The golfing is great so have them bring their sticks. The red building in another photo is the Chinese Pavilion at the 2010 Expo which is seeing attendance at 400,000/day. Take care.” Rawls Williams sent the story of Bill Mauldin, combat cartoonist. We continue to see the WWII vets pass along and want to continue to honor those folks still with us. Bob Waldo in early Aug wrote: “by the way, Larry Seekford and I were in Myrtle Beach last week and parked beside a car with VMI1969 SC plates. The car belonged to David Reid and we got together for dinner with Jan and him. It was a great time and really nice seeing another BR down there. We also went out to dinner the first night we were there, before finding David, and ran into three other VMI folks. These were much younger, with one still at the Institute.” Don Mercer and I exchange emails on a regular basis. In early Aug he wrote: “It’s been awhile since I last wrote. I just received my Alumni Review in today’s mail, so thought I’d send an update. I’ve been doing some more traveling and fishing. Last February, I fished with my oldest daughter, Noelle, off St. Thomas. I caught a wahoo and then thought it best to call our middle child, Erin, to apologize, as she graduated from UVA. I figured that was in order when you catch, kill, and eat another school’s mascot. We just got back from a reunion cruise to Alaska aboard a Holland America ship with some of the Night Rustics with whom I flew in Cambodia in 197071. The trip was fantastic. We helicoptered to two glaciers in Juneau, fished for salmon in Sitka, and took a float plane trip to a lodge in Ketchikan to eat Dungeness crab. The salmon that we caught - pink and silver - arrived yesterday and will, no doubt, be delicious. The photo below was taken of me, Cheerie, Noelle, and Noreen as we approached the Hubbard Glacier. Seeing it calve was quite interesting. I thought watching ice move might be in the category of watching paint

dry or grass grow, but the calving was far removed from either of those two exercises.” Tom Hickman provided a quick update on Mike McCrory and his son Alan, who is now running for South Carolina’s attorney – general. Doug Marks on scene in the area reported: “Alan Wilson found himself in a runoff after the Republican primary. Two weeks after the primary, Alan won the runoff with about a 20% margin. He will now face a Democrat in the November general election. I think it will be a good battle.” Bob Leibecke reflected back on days just before and after Mike’s helicopter accident. To him and a lot of us the passing of years has done nothing to dim the memories of good times and bad. Ken Houston: “A lot has been going on with me in the last few months. Started drawing my pension from the former Container Corporation of America, aka Jefferson-Smurfit, aka bankrupt!! If you recall, I got into seniors insurance a few years ago (Medicare, Medicaid, life, annuities, and long term care). I went independent several years ago and my part-time business, based on referrals, has taken off—I sell policies based on true needs and NOT commissions which give me great satisfaction. To top it all off, I start teaching next month at our local community college, 12 hours per week, three different subjects (all English-related which was my minor at VMI) and have nothing to do with my Master’s in Foreign Affairs.” Stay busy and live longer! It is our new mantra. Charlie Bryan, a very good fund raiser, has been invited to be part of the VMI Foundation’s Board. He will do well with such a group whose very mission is to raise and spend money on behalf of the “I”. Joe Flanz is back in the US after several years at the Embassy in Tokyo. In late May he wrote, “Michie and I are fine. I will be retiring next month (for a second time). To give you a very brief history of the last almost 30 years, I retired from the Army in 1992 after 23 years of active duty, seven of which were spent in Japan. I joined the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) on retirement and have had short 3-month assignments in Bosnia and Saudi Arabia. Fortunately, we were also able to be stationed in Japan again and lived there seven out of eight years between 2001 and 2009 when we returned to the States last year. Michie worked for the U.S. Government for twenty years doing research on Japan until she retired in November. She has been active in various Japanese-American organizations in the Washington, DC area. Our first retirement trip will be to Alaska (Inner Passage) in July. We have never been cruising, so it will be an adventure.” Ron Wall on the origin of the term “Good to me”: “My recollection is the term “Good-to-me” actually arose from members of the Class of 1968’s propensity to use that term to the point of nausea for the rest of us. It was their version of


CLASS NOTES an Air Force fighter pilot’s favorite exclamation, “Sierra Hotel” [or some similar words]. Every time something favorable happened, ‘68 members would say (often shout), “Good to Meeee!” They did it so much, for us at least, it became their name. Never the Class of ‘68: just Good-toMes.” This history lesson is provided free of charge… At the last Class Agents conference, we discussed social networking sites. I have started using LinkedIn after hearing discussions about the security of several possibles. If anyone is interested in becoming editor-in-chief of on-line class dialogue, please contact me. I am offering the task to anyone so interested. At the meeting we got a good laugh about one class whose editor is a no-nonsense wife! While I don’t have room in these notes for all of his health notes, here are hints for long and healthy living from the (Thomas C.) Jones Center of Macon, GA on diabetes & endocrine wellness. “Coronary artery disease is our #1 killer and I believe in early intervention and prevention. Know your numbers! If someone has had a coronary event, they need to be more aggressive and consider advanced cholesterol testing: not just LDL but also HDL and Apo B particle size and numbers. Patients need to be more aggressive knowing risk factors: diabetes mellitus is very common as we get bigger and older. Fasting glucose is normal at 90. If high, get serious with weight loss and exercise. 126 is diabetic: testing for hemoglobin A.C. should be done then or earlier to detect early diabetes. Hypertension is a stroke: the lower numbers the better. Goal for blood pressure is 130 / 80, so I believe these goals will prevent a heart attack or stroke: exercise 150 min/week, low salt diet with plenty of fruits and vegetables, and a lot of WINE! Pay attention to the doctor, BRs! In the Spirit ... Walt


Warren Grasty

To tell the truth, I’m having a pretty rough time with this class agent thing. In particular, sitting here, when it’s 105 degrees outside, trying to envision three months from now when you will be pondering your upcoming Turkey Day festivities as you read this. Forgive me, but I find it just a tad difficult relating to earmuffs and overcoats right now. But as the Brits say, “Musn’t grumble,” so off we go… As most of you who are Facebookers already know by now, Jerry Nickelsburg climbed all 14,410 feet of Mount Rainier in July. Not quite sure why, but he did.

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Phil Jornlin checked in from Sarajevo and said that, except for the landmines, Bosnia is a pretty fun place. Yeah, sounds like a real blast, Phil. Prior to Bosnia, Phil spent almost three years in Liberia as a senior security advisor to the president and her Special Security Service. By now, he should be starting a two-year stint in Iraq, just in time for the expected troop winddown. Ahem, that’s Troop Wind Down, Phil! In any case, it will be interesting to hear his take on the changes there since his first visit in the ’80s during the Iran/Iraq War. Keep safe, Phil, and keep us posted. In May, Kent and Judy Schlussel went on an amazing two-week tour of Israel that included trips to the Lebanese and Syrian borders, lunch with a Druze family, a day in a Bedouin village, with a few nights in a Kibbutz on the Sea of Galilee, and visits to Masada, Bethlehem, the Temple Mount and an olive farm. WHEW! They also met with a Palestinian journalist and Orthodox Jews and saw the Dead Sea Scrolls. In October, they will head to the Caribbean. Somewhere in between, they will fly to Haiti to volunteer at a clinic and orphanage founded and operated by a Charlottesville physician. In a blatant attempt to engender envy, Gordon Williams and son Chris tooled around Scotland in early July playing golf, including rounds at Carnoustie, Royal Dornoch, Cruden Bay and Saint Andrews. I’ve got to hand it to you, Gordon. The envy thing really works. That said, with handicaps of 7 and 14, respectively, they are real golfers, unlike some of you pretenders out there who shall remain nameless. For now. Ben and Val Morris also spent some time across the pond in July. After flying into Nice, France, they headed to Arles, where they began a cruise on the Rhone and Saone Rivers. To top it off, they spent a few extra days in gay Paree, and they highly recommend this cruise to all BRs. Thanks, Ben; I’ve just added this to our bucket list. Going in the other direction were Carl and Julie Strock, who moved from London to Frederick, MD, where Carl is president of Bechtel’s global construction operations. One would think he would get tired of all this building stuff, but he and Julie spend their “spare” time renovating their farmhouse in Essex County, VA. Carl says they frequently see Peel and June Dillard. Rumor has it that Peel is assisting with the renovations to help Carl accurately recreate the ambiance of the ghetto. From across the Chesapeake Bay, Bill Bott stays busy fishing, crabbing and boating with the family on the Eastern Shore. This includes son Charles ’99, wife Caroline and their two sons (Provisional Appointments for ’24 and ’26), who live within a few hundred yards. He and Brigitte leave shortly for Alaska to visit son

Wescott ’96, wife Ann Marie and their two sons (Provisional Appointments for ’30 and ’32). Thanks for keeping the VMI pipeline primed, Bill. Back on the “mainland,” Jim Spacek wrote from Tidewater about his disturbing discovery of two photos circa 1969 – one of Tom Love decked out in full Ranger gear and the other of Paul Munch dressed as a priest and blessing the multitudes. Sounds to me like bribery material here, Space. Another Swamp Rat, Tom Morehouse, checked in to say that he is now chief financial officer at WHRO in Hampton Roads, the local PBS (TV) and NPR (radio) outlet. He seems to have come full circle from his stealth ham radio operations in Room 416 of NEB back in the day. Tom actually sees the ephemeral Penn Schubert fairly often at Peninsula Pilots baseball games. The Pilots, a college summer league baseball team, had two Keydets on this summer’s roster: pitchers John Garrett ’13 and Coby Cowgill ’13, and are coached by Hank Morgan ’99. Hopefully, Tom will be able to drag Schubert along when he comes to the W&M and ODU football games this fall. In late May, I joined John Bailey, Jim Mawyer and two of their sons, Patrick and Todd, for a weekend of golf at Penn National near Gettysburg. Except for a debilitating attack of the shanks midway through the second round, it was an exceptional weekend. Patrick, a graduate of Stevens Institute of Technology, lives in northern New Jersey and is a civil engineer with an engineering firm in New York. Todd is a University of Tennessee grad and co-owner of TK Promotions in Richmond. You may recall that TK Promotions provided the quality shirts, hats and tote bags at our 40th Reunion. So, if you or your organization ever have the need for promotional items, you now know who to call. As of May 16th, Gary and Lynn Weishaar officially became empty nesters with the graduation of Nick ’10 with a degree in electrical engineering with distinction. For Nick’s sake, I hope it’s not the same distinction with which I graduated. He is working in Richmond for Alstom Power and will be in training in Paris for several weeks this summer. I feel a junket coming up – Hunch. Older son Kurt ’05 is an engineer with Malcom Pirnie in Richmond and was recently promoted after he obtained his Virginia professional engineering license. Congratulations all around! This summer, Gary and Lynn plan to spend more time at their cabin on Kerr Lake, where Chuck and Penny Wills occasionally join them, which, in my humble opinion, is a situation ripe for shenanigans. To follow up on a reunion item, Don Crawford’s MS bike ride in June raised a whopping $3,790! Many thanks to all of you who contrib-


CLASS NOTES uted to this most worthy cause. The class of 1970 was well represented at the Keydet Club Leadership Outing in Lexington the first week of June – Herb Braun, Bob Copty, Ralph Costen, Steve Craddock, John and Carole Flemming, Bill Gearhart, Reed Heddleston, Bill O’Connor, Neil Steverson, Dixie Walker and yours truly. This appeared to be the first significant event attended by John Flemming as a retiree, having just retired from government service in May. Congratulations, John! Riker Purcell clocked in from Richmond with his first ever contribution to class notes. After teaching English at Woodberry Forest School for five years following graduation, he received his law degree from W&L and worked for several small law firms in Roanoke and Savannah. He then went into the title insurance business, from which he retired last November. Wife Ginny is a vice president at the Westminster-Canterbury continuing care organization in Richmond. Both of their daughters live in New York. The older daughter is a lawyer (surprise!) and is married to an Aussie, while the younger daughter works at the Metropolitan Museum. It’s really great to catch up with the Purcells and to hear that life is good. Now that you are retired, Riker, we hope to see you more often. Dick Cheatham writes in that wife Patti did a two-week transcontinental road trip from Richmond to Portland, OR, and back to bring her daughter and two grandsons, ages 9 and 11, to Richmond. Dick and Patti plan to home school the youngsters with the assistance of friends in the area. Given these demands and his frequent speaking engagements around the country with Living History Associates, Ltd., Dick’s book on citizen leadership is still in process. Another Richmond-area Tweet, Bob Hawthorne, wrote in from Glen Allen to say that he is still working at Martinair Private Jets. He also confessed that he has picked up his tenor sax after 40 years of collecting dust (the sax, not Bob) and now plays in the Thomas Jefferson Alumni Cadet Corps Band at local events. This is much easier now that he has gotten his arrhythmic heart issues sorted out. Much of his spare time is spent with his three grandchildren who live nearby. Keep on truckin’, Bob. Speaking of Tweets, Bob Wood chimed in from nearby Fairfax, VA, where he recently retired from life in retail. Ah, another EE who heard the siren call of the business world. As some of you may remember, Woody and I were charter members of the Perpetual Summer School Society after discovering, much to our (and our parents’) chagrin, that our Rat year GPAs rounded down to 1. Bob occasionally runs into John Bailey and Beau Caire, both of whom work at the Prince William County Pub-


lic Service Authority and will meet with pretty much anybody for lunch during the work week. The weekend of the 4th of July included several notable events. The first was the annual VMI/VPI class of ’70 golf challenge at Ocean Isle, NC. Representing the home team were Ralph Costen and Bill O’Connor, who squared off against two of Ralph’s high school buddies, both victims of unfortunate post-secondary school choices. Bill sent in an incriminating picture, but unfortunately, the resolution was too low to publish. So, send me some money, and I’ll forward it to you. The other, less historic 4th of July event was an impromptu round of golf with Reed Heddleston, Walt Galanty ’72, Kimo Wong ’75, Kelly Sullivan ’01 and me at Old Hickory Golf Club in Woodbridge, VA. Speaking of Reed, on July 15th, which happens to be his birthday, daughter Lindsey presented him and Carol with their first grandchild, Jules Eloise Smith, in Waimea, Kauai, after 34 hours of labor! Eloika, as she is called in Hawaiian, and mom are doing fine. At 21 inches long, the Heddleston genes appear to be dominant. I can just see the frequent flyer mileage meter revving up as we speak. Chad Lash writes (eloquently, I might add) that his wife, Caryn Wagner, daughter of Bob Wagner ’57, was confirmed by the U.S. Senate last February as Undersecretary for Intelligence and Analysis at the Department of Homeland Security. I detected just a twinge of disappointment that some of his past exploits were not deemed substantive enough to warrant further investigation during the background checking process. Not to worry, Chad; we know what you did. On a more upbeat note (pun alert!), it is good to hear that Chad still performs at various northern Virginia music venues with his old high school friend, Roger Henderson. So, all you locals keep checking the Washington Post’s Weekend event listings. For the 11th time in 14 years, Chad has served on the staff at the northern Virginia Writing Project’s Student Summer Institute, a two-week creative writing camp held at George Mason University. In July, Chad attended the untimely funeral of Donna Adams, wife of Jim Adams ’71, in Arlington Cemetery, where he saw Dave Kennedy ’71 and Mead Stith ’71, with whom Chad sang in the good old days. While we are on the music thing, if I were George Yurchak’s child, I’d be pretty hacked off right now, ’cause he’s spending all my inheritance going to concerts! I present as evidence snippets from posts to his Facebook page: On July 19th, Ringo Starr and, four days later, The Music of ABBA at the Beau Rivage Casino in Biloxi, MS; then Melissa Etheridge at the Hard Rock Casino the next week; and back

to The Beau for Cyndi Lauper, with a musical play squeezed in for good measure! Sadly, the last concert I attended was several years ago, and even that was using a freebie ticket from my neighbor. What is becoming painfully clear here, George, is that … I am not worthy. Trolling Facebook, a little more revealed that Jim and Pam Nelson celebrated Jim’s 62nd birthday on July 16th by hiking up Old Rag Mountain near their hometown of Madison, VA. Jim opined that the slope steepens in direct proportion to the increase in your age. In late July, Liz and I joined John and June Bailey, Stix and Nancy Chandler, Jim and Judy Mawyer, and Dave Schmidt at Charlie and Margaret Walker’s OBX beach house in Corolla, NC. Also joining the fun from the house across the street were some of the young ’uns – Waite Walker; Patrick and John Bailey Jr.; and Payton, Todd and Taylor Mawyer ’01. Talyor and wife Laura brought along 6-month old daughter Jane, Judy and Jim’s first grandchild. The major event of the week was repairing the wind damage to the beach tent, a.k.a. “The Man Cave,” using $42 worth of PVC pipe, 2 x 4’s and duct tape. All that was missing from this scene was Fred Sanford’s pickup truck. The amazing thing wasn’t that only four of us fell down at some time during the course of the week, it was that all four were able to actually get back up unassisted. While we were at the OBX, Dick Knight took advantage of the situation and scurried through northern Virginia, so we were not able to connect. And I was so looking forward to a free meal. Fortunately, Dick was able to meet up with Cy Dolph at Cy’s law office in Norfolk, where they caught up on life since graduation and took a blood oath to make it to our 45th Reunion. September promises to be a busy month for the Knights, as Dick and Linda’s younger daughter will be getting married in Maine, and later in the month, he will host a Civil War conference in Lexington, at which Waite Rawls will be discussing the Museum of the Confederacy’s plans to open a branch in Appomattox. After the OBX boondoggle, Liz, Dave Schmidt and I caught up with A.C. and Beth Arnn for a quick visit at their Kitty Hawk, NC, timeshare. They had just returned from 10 days in South Korea with son Patrick, an Air Force F-16 Viper pilot. It sounds like they gave South Korea’s modern mass transit system a real workout. This included a ride on the Ktrain from Seoul to Busan on the Sea of Japan at 300 kmh, which, for all you LA’s out there, converts from metric into “fast.” Patrick arranged for them to stay on base and get a special tour of the DMZ. Planning continues for daughter Sarah’s April Burlington wedding that should


CLASS NOTES provide a much-needed stimulus for the local economy. Dave Schmidt reports that his mother is doing extremely well following major surgery earlier this year in Akron. Being 89 years young at the time, her doctors were having doubts about the whole thing, which involved removing about 90% of her small intestines. Note to doctors: She plans on playing with Dave in her club’s member/guest golf tournament this fall. Looks like she showed them! Other good news is that Dave is a proud grandfather for the second time with the arrival of Rylie Ellen Schmidt. Son Tyler and family are in Korea, where Tyler is stationed with the Army for three years. Speaking of grandchildren, Howie and Barbara DeWolf appear to be in the running for the Gene Pool Expansion Award with the arrival of two more grandchildren, which brings their grand

total (pun intended) to 11. Howie is still not sure whether chasing all these young ’uns around will help him and Barbara stay young or simply wear them out faster than usual. Amidst all this grandchild frenzy, youngest daughter Allison, a.k.a. Auntie Allison, is set to start her senior year in high school. OMG! Also in late July, Bill and Paula O’Connor hosted a dinner for the class of 1970 Athletic Scholarship recipient and football team co-captain Damiso Alexander ’10 and his mother. Joining in on the festivities were Tom and Jill Cooke, Herb and Susan Braun, and Howard Donald ’68. Reports of local beef shortages hit the newswires the next day. Ben Dick advises that son Tyler (23) returned to UVa following a two-year sabbatical to complete his undergraduate degree in Foreign Affairs and Government. Daughter Brittany Leigh (24) is now the office manager for Foxfield and is bringing

them kicking and screaming into the 21st century via updating their technology, computers and teleconferencing capabilities. Ben and Kent Schlussel occasionally cross paths in and around C’ville, though not often enough to be considered a threat to society. Ben is still searching for the next big thing in life after handling too many stressful legal cases. He has also started a workout and health regimen at a local sports facility to deal with his Type II diabetes, a disease that afflicts over 50 million people. More power to you, Ben. And now, for the grand finale, a dose of pathos. Shortly after the deadline for submitting the previous class notes last May, I received a missive from Bill Scherer detailing an unfortunate series of events that befell him and Barbara on their way from reunion to the Richmond Airport. This involved a Virginia State police trooper, a speeding ticket and a heart-breaking letter to said trooper explaining, among other things, that 80

Class of 1970

Photos clockwise from above, left: - Kent and Judy Schlussel in Herodian, Israel, while on a group tour in May 2010. - Relaxing in the “Man Cave” on the Outer Banks at Corolla, North Carolina, were, from left, Dave Schmidt, Charlie

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Walker, Warren Grasty, Stix and Nancy Chandler, June and John Bailey, and Jim Mawyer, July 2010. - Jerry Nickelsburg atop Mount Rainier in Washington state, July 2010.  - Gordon Williams and son Chris on Swilken Bridge, the Old Course, St. Andrews, Scotland, July 2010.


CLASS NOTES mph isn’t “really” all that fast when you are used to driving motorcycles at 190 mph. Somewhere in Central Virginia, an angst-riddled trooper cowers in the dark, lonely corner of his barracks room, pondering the question, “What if … ?” As always, please let us know if you get to NOVA, so we’ll be sure to leave the lights on. In the Spirit!


James Kelly

These notes will cover the period from 15 May 2010 to 15 Aug. 2010. As you are reading these notes, the long hot days of summer are beginning to give way to the dark and cold days of winter. Most of you know already that this summer has provided one of the worst combinations of heat and drought our area has seen in quite awhile. Yards are but a memory, and farmers here have been feeding cattle hay since early July. Pulaski (and a whole lot of the rest of Virginia) is in the midst of an ecological disaster and in need of one of our government’s bailouts. I hope, wherever you are, that fall has been kinder. Our class and the VMI community were saddened to learn of the death of Jim Adams’ wife, Donna, on 15 May 2010 after a long and courageous battle with cancer. We will fondly remember Donna as someone who was always our friend. She was a gracious host for classmates, as well as those on “official” business. Many VMI cadets were watched over and cared for by Donna while they were away from home and toughing out their cadetships. Donna was buried in Arlington National Cemetery in June. A large group of classmates and VMI people joined the family for her service. Our heartfelt condolences go out to Jim, and we wish him well, as he returns to Lexington this fall. In early June, the 139 crew … Gault, Littleton, Wall and Morefield (minus Lockridge) gathered in Salem (at Mouse’s place) for an evening of war stories and commiseration about growing old and retirement, etc. Box and Lanny headed up to Lexington the following day for the Keydet Club Leadership Outing and were joined there by Kirby, Bryan, Gearhart, Acuff and Strickler. Box and others joined in on the golf outing, while Sam went fishing on the river. He ended up in the ER at Stonewall Jackson Hospital with a hook through a finger. Sam rebounded well and was preparing to leave the following week for a cruise to Bermuda with Spring and Tom and Connie Martenstein. No injury report from the cruise was available at press time. Sam also had visited with Ted and Karen Wachtmeister at Sandbridge


and was expecting to get together with E.J. Patrick later this month (Aug.) in Richmond. Mike Strickler had recently gone to Cincinnati for the wedding of Zeke and Jane Ellington’s youngest son. Also attending were Pickral, Golden, Neale and Roberts. Mike reported that Worth was still living in Cincinnati and doing well. The “Cuffer” came in for the Keydet Club event from Florida, stayed briefly in Lexington, headed back to Florida and then went “home” to Arizona. While on tour, Cuffer did visit with Tommy Lawson who was doing well and working on a big jury trial. Lanny described the Keydet Club event as an “inspiration.” He spent some time with athletic scholarship recipients that he termed “top notch” kids that any alumnus should be proud to support through Annual Giving. Littleton, Gault, Bryan, Metzger, Acuff and wives were also in attendance at the annual Fourth of July celebration at VMI for a cookout and fireworks. Buddy and Carol had all of their grandchildren and family there and reportedly remained a safe distance from our other Brother Rats. The Bryans are also sporting a daughter-in-law after Paul’s (’05) wedding in June. In other news, Ned Mikula’s oldest son, Matt (a VMI alum), has graduated from law school at William and Mary and is getting ready for the bar exam . Ned and Anne recently took a tour of Russia, Denmark and other points of interest. “Ox” Schrader (who already passed the bar) is going out to practice solo in Tampa, FL, and continues to live a bachelor’s life in the sunny south. Geoff Schelhorn’s son is headed off to Morgantown for his freshman year at WVU. Geoff is struggling with putting a Mountaineers sticker on his car. Speaking of Schelhorn, I had mentioned in the last issue that, excluding individuals for whom I have no DOB, Ken Piernick might be the youngest member of the class of ’71. Well, gentlemen, I stand corrected. Mr. Schelhorn has that distinction by a fairly wide margin. He was born well into 1950, and while we were Rats, he should have been in high school being a junior and looking for a homecoming date or something like that. Geoff e-mailed me with his story. He says his mom started him in school when he was four in order, according to Geoff, to cut down on the number of children she had to keep at home. Geoff thinks he was at least “mentally mature” and did well in sports, etc. As an eighth grader, he attended Augusta Military Academy, run by a VMI grad, and played football under a coach that was from VMI, as well. Geoff had an uncle by the name of Charles Norris who matriculated at VMI in 1860 at age 17. When Stonewall Jackson deployed from VMI during the Civil War, he intended to leave behind any cadets under the age of eighteen but young Charles stowed away in a supply wagon and entered the war. Later, as

an acting captain, he was killed at 1st Manassas/ Bull Run. His brother, who served in the Loudon Artillery, returned his body to Leesburg to parents who did not know he was in the war. Check out the book They Were Heard From … VMI Alumni in the Civil War by B. David Mann ’46/49C for more on that story and others. I got a rare correspondence from Buck Hamilton who is out in El Paso, TX, with his wife, Aga, and their cats. Buck is working for the Department of Homeland Security as a protective security advisor in the Office of Infrastructure Protection. He assists state, local, tribal and private sector security managers in improving their security posture for critical businesses or facilities. During the last two years, Buck has become board certified in security management and physical security. Aga is developing her own IT business, but Buck calls her “real passion” assisting victims of Internet scams. She has a Web site at cybercrimeops. com and helps victims and small law enforcement agencies, free of charge, with scam related incidences. With these two on duty, I don’t think anyone is likely to break in their home or hack their computers. Bill and Margaret Ginder were recently involved in a campaign to raise funds for the MDA in TX. It was one of those events where they agreed to be “arrested” unless they raised a given amount of “bail” money. Many of their followers were kept informed of their escapades, their undercover outfits, etc. via e-mail. With a goal to raise $5,000, these two indeed had their hands full. Luckily, their goal was not only achieved but exceeded by over 2,000 additional dollars. This amount enabled them to send an entire cabin of children to a camp for “Jerry’s Kids.” I noted on their tally board several donations from our Brother Rats. Congratulations on a job well done. Buddy Bryan was in Texas on VMI business and visited with the Ginders. Bill says that it was so hot, he thought Buddy was going to “render away,” which I think must be Texan for getting pretty darn hot. Cold Texas beverages were supplied to relieve the suffering. From “Who Dat?” country, John Sloan reports that things are going well. Janet has just retired and has John going to Weight Watchers, so that he will live longer to maintain her new lifestyle. John is a “Landman” out there and loves his work which, he says, sometimes involves a few “explosives.” John continues to be an avid stamp collector which has been a 50-year hobby for him. Janet’s sister is a high school basketball coach in Houston and most recently won the Texas State 5A Girl’s Championship. We have several Brother Rats who are accomplished sailors and yachtsmen who race in large competitions. Sam Marshall ’55 sent me a story about Rives Potts’ recent victory in the 2010 Newport Bermuda Race which, in yachting


CLASS NOTES circles, is considered a major achievement. Rives owns and sails the Carina, a boat considered a “classic” for her looks, performance and history. This boat has been sailed more times than any other vessel in the Newport Bermuda Race. Rives runs a Connecticut boatyard and has sailed in the America’s Cup and offshore with Ted Turner. You can read all about this at (Editor’s Note: Rives Potts is also featured in an article about alumni sailing in the front section of this Review.) NJVC is one of the largest information technology solutions providers supporting the U.S. Department of Defense. The company announced, at the end of May, that Alan Tashima had been named as VP of Intelligence Community Programs. According to their press release, NJVC is “thrilled to welcome this proven leader to its senior leadership team.” Full resume and other glowing comments about Alan can be found on the company’s Web site … but Alan, of course, can’t tell you what he really does, so don’t ask. I got a nice note from Sam Wright whose son Matt graduated from VMI in May with majors in chemistry, international relations and science and security. Matt commissioned in the National Guard and is going to armor school at Fort Knox. He will later be working in Charlottesville which, according to Sam, will allow him to join his “old retired parents” in fishing, canoeing and goofing

off. Sam and Betsy plan to be at the 40th next April. During the night of 8-9 July, a fire destroyed the Southern Inn in Lexington. It was a landmark that had an impact on many an outing for a lot of us during our time at VMI. It was one of a very few places we could safely take our parents and at least some dates. The restaurant had been purchased by Derbie Huger ’62, local VMI alum, in the 1980s and was operated by his son George. When George upgraded the facilities, he called on Laura Metzger to do the wallpaper, painting and other wall treatments. John Metzger’s lawn service also has taken care of the owner’s properties for a number of years. Ken Coleman worked for Derbie for more than 30 years with Institutional Foods before it was sold to Ken’s current employer in Staunton. According to recent news reports, the owners plan to restore the restaurant. Steve Fogleman organized a cookout to be held at the home of Carl and Ann Biersack in Fairfax for the weekend of 15 Aug. The gathering is for Kathryn Baxter in memory and honor of Mike. Several BRs were expected, and we hope to have a picture to record the event (after my deadline for these notes). Fogie’s invitation noted that this was to be a family affair and that no Rat swimming would be permitted. The Secretaries of the U.S. Departments of the Interior and Agriculture have appointed Steve

Class of 1971: Ann and Carl Biersack ‘71 hosted a cookout on Aug. 15, 2010, in honor of Kathryn Baxter (Mike’s widow). Brother Rats and wives in attendance included: Buddy Bryan, Steve Fogleman, Dave and Donna Honeywell, Charlie Lindsey, Steve and Nikki Matthews, John Metzger, John and Debby Nilon, John Noon, Rick and Jennifer Pearman, Ken Piernick, Steve and Dianne Price, Geoff Schelhorn, and Alan Tashima. The young man pictured in the back is Anderson Caldwell ’12, who marveled at the group’s “youthful” exuberance.

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Sanetti to serve on the Wildlife and Hunting Heritage Conservation Council (WHHCC) which is an official advisory group under the Federal Advisory Committee Act that will help promote and preserve America’s hunting heritage for future generations. The new council provides a forum for citizen input on matters pertaining to hunting and wildlife habitat and encourages partnerships with various hunting and wildlife organizations. Steve is currently the president and CEO of the National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF). Steve has also graciously agreed to once again provide some shotguns for the sporting clay shoot at the 40th Reunion. It never hurts to have friends in high places. Al Davis has a new grandson and has had himself “tuned up” for the 40th with a new heart valve (double by-pass) and a new knee. Al is now ready for some serious dancing and says he doesn’t mind if it’s a DJ or a band when he gets there. Buzz and Jan Booker attend the same church in Pulaski as Kathryn and I, and we get to see them fairly often. Their son, David (UVa ’06), has just returned stateside from a deployment to Iraq as a UH-60M Black Hawk pilot and unit commander. Capt. Booker was awarded an Air Medal for Meritorious Service in Combat. David will be stationed for a while in Hawaii before reporting to Fort Rucker, AL, for leadership training. While on leave, David plans to visit with older brother Armistead (W&M ’02) in New York City and then travel to Chicago for some Cub’s baseball. Kathryn and I just returned from a very hot Hilton Head Island after a week with the grandchildren, Lauren (’26) and Ryan (’27), and their parents Chuck and Veronica Fox. We did not encounter any VMI alumni, per se, but people did recognize our shirts and made comments about VMI or about knowing of someone associated with VMI. The Citadel, of course, is pretty close by there, and folks may have just been cautious. In a recent letter to class agents, Adam Volant ’88 notified us that more than 275 new cadets were at VMI for the Summer Transition Program and a very large matriculating class was expected in August. New paving is complete, Barracks is completed and other projects are on schedule for completion. The campus and the cadre are ready for a new group of Rats … and the beat goes on. Figures for Annual Giving in Fiscal Year 2009 have just been released, and I am proud to report that the news is pretty good. Over 4,490 graduate alumni made gifts or commitments to VMI for a 34 % participation rate … slightly below our goal but not bad, considering the economy. Full dollar figures and breakdowns are available through VMI. Even better news comes from the class of 1971. Gentlemen, we had 115 alumni donors for a 44.57% participation rate. We out paced EVERY class in our decade and EVERY class after that. Now, that’s what it’s all about, kicking some seri-


CLASS NOTES ous butt and, more importantly, getting on board with supporting VMI. I am very proud of you and encourage you to keep up the good work. If you haven’t joined our donors yet, then this tax season is a good time to get started. Every time I write these notes, I am reminded of how much VMI has influenced all of our families, and I’m impressed by the number of VMI grads that are the sons of our classmates. And just about all of us who have grandchildren have made a Provisional Appointment for them at VMI. I think there is a reason for that, beyond a neat certificate to tape to their play pens. Whether or not they ever go to VMI, we want them to at least know that VMI will be ready to provide a top notch education for those young men and women who do matriculate. Our support of Annual Giving is the best way I know of to make sure that happens. Kathryn and I look forward to seeing many of you this fall. I hope that each of you will have a great holiday season. Keep your eyes on the mail for information concerning the 40th Reunion. My thanks to all of you who have agreed to help or have sent in your thoughts and suggestions. Rah Virginia Mil … Jim


Larry Houseworth

Fellow Spirit-keepers, families, friends, passers-by: These notes are brief, as they cover the seasonally quiet period from New Market Day through mid August 2010. Little did I imagine that my snarky diatribe about three feet of February’s “Global Warming” would evilly manifest as the hottest summer on record in D.C. Apropos to a certain coiner of the phrase, I’m beginning to think this is evidence of Global Weird-ing …

To business – Pat Webb, the Foundation’s VP for Annual and Reunion Giving, reports that 4,490 alumni (34%) made gifts and commitments totaling $2.55M to the Foundation Fund, $1.7M to the Keydet Club Scholarship Fund and $1.63M to the Athletic Operations Fund during FY 2010. In this age of battered 401(k)’s, hammered home equity and (for some of us) accelerating college tuition rates; this is outstanding. A quick look at participation rates nationwide shows VMI’s on a par with Johns Hopkins and Stanford (both 35%), ahead of Cornell and Northwestern (32%, 31%), and well ahead of UVa (23%) and Tech (18%). Yet, every cent of donation to VMI – every one – is absolutely critical. Declining tax revenues will force the commonwealth to further reduce support (in actual and adjusted dollars) for several years into the future, forcing VMI to absorb more and more of its escalating operating and research costs without driving up tuition. Anyone who’s had any contact with the Corps, the faculty and the Institute sees firsthand the results of this giving. And as a class (I include widows as “Sister” Rats), 37% of us contributed almost $90K for FY 2010. The Foundation, Keydet Club, the Athletic Operations Fund and the 25% of the Corps who could not attend VMI without some form of financial aid thank you – as does your humble scribe. To the news from our mass – Mike Sadler, revealing traces of rosily reminiscent myopia, sent a quick note saying “… the further along we get, the more enjoyable it seems to get visible reminders of the year in the Ratline.” Beautiful sentiment, BR, but I’ll stick to VMI birthday cards – not 3x5 “you’re up’s” … Emily Griffith filled me in on another ’72 legacy – “I promised you a couple of pictures from this last weekend (ed. note - Graduation). All went well, and there is another Griffith in the Army Corps of Engineers. Greg gave James ’10 the oath, and both of our darlings were

there. It was a lovely weekend. Now, the Class of ’72 has one more legacy rising to the ranks of first classman in Adam Woloshuk ’11 (ed. note – Mike and Cindy’s son). Cindy and I are involved in getting a VMI Mothers in Prayer alumni group going. So far, we have about 20 moms ready to start praying for our graduates. So, the class of ’72 has started another little project with BR wives in the mix.” Heartening, Emily – thank you … And in that familial vein, I post the following from Sandy Edens – it speaks for itself – “ … Diane (Diane’s story is next paragraph) and I accompanied my dad to his 70th Reunion at VMI. I think there were seven members, maybe eight, of the class of ’40 who returned and many had family with them. Ninety-one years old and these guys were charged up about VMI, the Old Yell, the cadets, the review and life in general. It was an inspiration for me to see these men of the ‘Greatest Generation’ and to hear their stories and to see the friendships that were cemented at VMI and have lasted over the many years since. I was particularly appreciative of John Augustine ’68, I believe, who helped me with my failing father to lead the class across the Hill and into the Barracks. He stepped forward to help my dad and in the process missed the opportunity of being with his dad, Col. John Augustine ’40, USAF (Ret). I turned to thank him, and he was gone; the unsung hero of the day left without the thanks and recognition that was deserved. Typical of VMI men, though; he helped without expectation of anything in return. Thanks, John! After attending the 70th of the class of ’40, I anxiously await our 40th! While there I was able to spend some quality time with Col Tom Moncure, Vern Beitzel, Buddy Bryan ’71, Rich Flowers and Waite Rawls ’70. It was good to get caught up with some of the BRs. “ … Diane and I dated during our Rat year and also half of the third class year. We parted

Class of 1972 Photo left: The Griffiths’ son, James, far right, graduated in May 2010. Family attending the graduation were, from left, Edward ’08, Greg, Emily and James. Photo right: Emily Griffith pinned bars on newly commissioned 2nd Lt. James Griffith ’10, as Father Greg looked on.



CLASS NOTES ways (she accurately and quickly states that I ‘dumped’ her over Christmas of our third class year). Well, fate has gotten a hold of us, and we have joined back together. In fact, we were married on June 17, 2010. So, she waited 41 years, and we are doing something we should have done years ago. Many BRs (Jim Snead, Pete Grojean, Vern Beitzel, Rick Faught, Charlie Crim) may remember her, but if not, she will be with me in 2012 when we return for the 40th. “… the thing that has transformed me into having VMI be the major part of my youth’s memory is the VMI ‘family.’ Whether it was Dad’s class of ’40, seeing John Augustine or Waite Rawls, returning for our 25th and seeing many of the BRs I knew, or just getting a birthday card from you, I have reconciled in my memory the fact that, while I did not graduate, I will remain a part of VMI, with VMI a large part of me … if there is a BR who has expressed reluctance in returning, as I did, I am happy to talk with him to share my experience.” Nothing more needs to be said, BRs – may God bless you, yours, VMI and our great country – In the Spirit and, as always, humbly honored … Larry


Mike Kelly

The summer is rapidly drawing to a close. It is mid August as I write these notes. It actually isn’t as hot right now as it has been – only 94 at the moment! Pat and I are chilling by the pool. My brother, Jim ’71, and his wife, Kathryn, have been down for a visit this weekend and just left a little while ago; Jim and I had a mini class agent’s meeting around the pool! We also were planning our trip to West Point this fall. These plans include linking up with our brother, Rick, in Pennsylvania and then all of us heading for the ball game. Hope to see a lot of you there! I think we’ve had one week all summer when the temperature was not in the 90s. It is about to set a record for the number of days in the 90s and 100s As I said in my last notes, I figured we’d be sweltering when the notes came out this summer, and when you read these notes, it will be almost Christmas time and cooler! And of course, we’ll be wishing we were at the pool! Pat and I traveled out west in June, toured some of the national parks and had a great time in the Albuquerque area. We are getting ready to head out to Las Vegas in September to keep the grandkids for a few days and then on to the

2010-Issue 4

North Rim of the Grand Canyon for a visit. In the last notes, I mentioned that my son, Derek, had graduated from Appalachian State and that I was going to help him move to Maryland where he will be working. He’s now living in Bowie, MD, and working for Hensel Phelps Construction on a project at Fort Meade. When I carried him up there, we went on post and found the job site, gates to enter, etc. and of course made a trip to the commissary. As we were walking down the aisle, I spotted a shirt and a head that looked familiar and said, “Pull your chin in, Marine!” It was none other than Ed Hall, who was also shopping in the store. Ed was doing well and looked good! He doesn’t live far from Fort Meade. I’m hoping that sometime when we go up to visit Derek, we can have a class get-together, as a lot of BRs live in the Baltimore/Annapolis area. We are actually headed up that way next week as we have a wedding to go to, plus it will be our first visit to see Derek. But I’ll be contacting some of you in the near future to see if we can get together! Pat’s son, Bryan, recently moved to the Charlotte area to help a friend of his get a landscape business going, so we now have another travel destination. My daughters, Kathryn and Ashley, both live in Greensboro, NC. Kathryn has an on-line art business, does photography work and teaches art at some of the local schools. Ashley teaches the fifth grade in Burlington, NC. My oldest son, Scott, is a senior VP with Bank of America in Las Vegas. A lot of you sent me messages this summer, and as always, it is great to hear from you. I want to start by saying that I received a note from Dave Northcraft regarding his visit to the oncologist in July. His prognosis indicates he has early stage 1 CLL (Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia), and he’s due to go back in November for another checkup. At the present time, his immune system is compromised, his white-cell count is down and he’s having pain with some glands and his spleen. Currently, he’s trying to eat right and not lose any more weight (he said he’d dropped nearly 30 pounds initially.) His spirits are good, and he hopes to continue to press up the hill of science. You are in our thoughts and prayers, Dave! Dave stays in contact with several of the guys, including M.B. Adelson, Dave Sutherland, Tom Clark and Ron Martin. M.B. plans to finish his Ph.D. in December, and Dave has suggested we all go to Tallahassee and have a big celebration party. Dave is still active in new cadet recruiting. He said he has two Missouri license plates, VMI-73, that he’d be glad to mail to any BR that might want them. M.B. said that it was a lot harder going to graduate school and more expensive than sending one of the kids to school. As an attorney,

if he’s in the library doing research, he isn’t getting any billable hours! He thinks it is worth it, however, and enjoys being a student in a civilian college. He has put his German restaurant plans on hold for the time being. With the economy still slow, being heavily involved with his school work and trying to keep his practice going, he decided the restaurant could wait for awhile. M.B. mentioned that his dad had passed away in May. (Dave let me know and we passed the word out.) He really appreciated Rich Lykins and Dick Knight ’70 coming down for the memorial service. M.B. stays in touch with Buck Harrison. He said Buck has a child that is an Army lieutenant stationed at Fort Campbell, KY, and is scheduled for deployment to Afghanistan soon. M.B.’s niece, daughter of Russell Jackson ’75, is a first lieutenant and currently in Afghanistan. We hope for their safe deployments and return home. Tom and Bonnie Clark have continued their travels this summer. Following their spring trip to the Bahamas, they purchased a camper and have been moving around the country camping. They’ve been down to Albuquerque, have a trip planned to California in September for a wedding and then plan to head up to South Dakota before the onset of winter. Tom said he’d been in touch with Dave Northcraft and that Dave and Susan were planning a trip to visit them in Colorado this fall. Dave’s son, Daniel ’01,

Class of 1973: On June 29, 2010, Col. Roland Tiso, USA (Ret), received the Knowlton Medal for exceptional achievements from April-December 2009 while serving as a senior military analyst of the Office of the Defense Representative in Islamabad, Pakistan. The Intelligence director at U.S. CENTCOM presented the medal. See the Alumni News section in this issue of the Review for more about Tiso’s award.


CLASS NOTES lives nearby in Littleton, CO. Daniel works for and new cadet recruiting this fall. That includes niece from Galveston to Providence, RI, where Habitat for Humanity, and his wife, Jennifer, is staffing the VMI booth at a couple of college fairs she’ll be attending the University of Rhode Isa school teacher. in Maryland. land. He promised to wave when he and his URoland Tiso stays in touch with me on a regular I also heard from PX English, who lives in Haul pass through Carolina! His daughter is a basis. Roland recently was awarded the Knowlton the Annapolis area, as well. PX is “between high school senior this year, so he knows they’ll Medal by the U.S. National Intelligence As- jobs” right now, although he is doing some be doing some college searching this fall. sociation for his outstanding service and work private consulting work. He and his wife, Dave McCown sent a picture, which is in Islamabad, Pakistan. The medal was awarded Caroline, stay busy with a number of activities, included in this issue. The McCown family has on June 29 by Brig. Gen. Steve Fogarty, intel- and PX is active on the board of trustees for the a VMI history going back to 1931. Check out ligence director at the U.S. Central Command Boys’ Home in Covington, VA. the photo of all those sharp Keydets! Dave said where Roland works. Roland was also awarded Don Reisch made it back from his California his daughter, Claire, just completed her first an Army Commendation Medal in recognition vacation to find his home pretty well intact. year at Hollins University where she is studying of his actions in combat on Nov. 1, 2003, while You’ll recall in my last notes that Don was tour- English and creative writing. She had a really serving as an adviser to a Ukrainian infantry ing wineries when Nashville was hit with the good year and is very excited and positive about brigade in Iraq. Congratulations, Roland! You spring floods, but fortunately, his home received the program. His son, Allen, VMI class 2011, make us proud. (Editor’s Note: Tiso’s award is very little damage. He said that Nashville had was home for the summer and took a couple of also announced in the Alumni News section of this been sweltering in the heat this summer with classes in calculus and Shakespeare at the local Review.) Roland advised me, however, that he’s record 90- to 100-degree days, and like many of community college. He also did an internship received his “warning order” to be ready to head you in your messages, he said to “stay cool!” with the Smithsonian and worked part time to Afghanistan in the near future. He’ll probably I had a nice note from Wes and Ivonne Carr. at Home Depot. Sounds like he stayed busy! be there when you read these notes. Hopefully, it Wes said he and his son volunteered to drive his Allen is a biology major, and I know he’s used won’t be a long deployment, and to staying busy – been there, done he’ll be back home safe and sound that! Dave’s wife, Happy, continues very soon. Roland’s daughters to work as a librarian at Briar Woods continue to excel. Allie is preparHigh School and is very involved in ing to attend the Pittsburgh Ballet school activities and sponsoring stuTheater, where she’ll study for dent clubs. Dave is still working as a two years to attain her profespsychologist in his practice. Dave said sional certification. C.J. has spent that he recently talked with Jimmy her summer at Bates College in Chalkley, who’d had back surgery Maine attending a summer dance. but was recovering well. And Dave Roland is still staying in shape and said he had talked to Jimmy Parks. said he’d entered the Tampa Bay It’s been awhile since I heard from Classic Body Building ChampiJimmy C. or P., so I hope you guys onship in June and took second will give me a buzz! place in the “over 50” division! It has been some time since I had Way to go, Ro! heard from Dick Bugbee, who lives I had a short note from Ralph in Nazareth, PA. He always sends a Littreal who said he and Becky Christmas card with a picture of a have had a mellow summer and couple of great looking young men on actually enjoyed cooler-thanit. But this month, he sent me a nice normal weather. Must be nice! message. In his note this month, Dick He said they just returned from a said his sons, Matt and Chris, now great vacation in Oregon traveling seven and five years old, are becomaround Mt. Hood and the Columing quite the athletes in football, basebia River Gorge. ball, soccer and martial arts. He loves Scott McCarthy, who lives in every minute of it! Dick is still flying Bethesda, MD, said he had surfor Continental Airlines and flies vived the earthquake that occurred mostly to Europe and South America. in the area in July. It has been hot With his travels, his wife, Tahizy, gets up there, and he’s spent his share to do a lot of the day-to-day Mom of time in the pool, as well. Scott duties. Dick, however, is counting the went to VMI in June for the Keytime down for when he can retire in det Club Leadership Outing and about five years, and Tahizy can get said he had a great time. He was a job outside the home, and he can joined by Billy Stephens, Yerry become Mr. Mom. Dick also shared Kenneally, Stu Seaton and Mark with me a surprise he had a couple of Class of 1973: The McCown family on Post for a tailgate Weiss. Scott plans to attend the weeks ago when his dyke, Fred Philparty were, from left, David; David’s son, Allen ’11; Lee ’58; Maryland Alumni Chapter Rat lips ’70, was in the area. Fred looked and Lee’s son, Derek ’89. Missing from the picture is Albert Send-off event in Columbia, MD, Dick up and paid him a visit. This was (Mac) ’31, now deceased, father of David and Lee. and will be involved with Ed Hall the first time in 36 years they had got-



CLASS NOTES ten together. Dick said his next big job was to get the boys down to Lexington to visit VMI. The Lost BR Award for Issue 4 goes to Bob Poynor. Can’t remember when I last heard from Bob, and as he said, his note was “long overdue.” Bob still lives in the Montgomery, AL, area and works at the Doctrine Center on Maxwell AFB. A lot of his time is spent updating or writing doctrine publications and then trying to get various commanders to agree! Last year, he finished the Nuclear Operations doctrine pub and hopes to complete a revision to the Air Force’s basic doctrine pub this fall. He and his wife, Sandy, live in a rural part of Montgomery with their three cats. Bob said he has a BMW motorcycle and enjoys riding it. (I suggested he contact Mac MacKenzie, as he has lots of Beamers!) Bob indicated that after sitting on the sidelines for many years, he decided to get involved in politics somewhat and has joined a military and veteran’s advisory committee in support of a young up-and-coming woman Republican who is challenging a democratic house seat. Great hearing from you, Bob. Well, that is about it for notes this time. Guess I should mention from a personal standpoint that I am still employed with the state. As I discussed in May, it looked as if the General Assembly was going to split up my division of environmental health, and I would be out of a job July 1. Fortunately, that did not happen. Instead, the budget bill that passed requires that we study the feasibility of merging my division with the division of public health, which is in another department. We have to provide a two-phase report, one part in October and the other in January. I fully expect it to be used next year to look at restructuring our divisions. We’ll see what happens. At least this way, we have an opportunity to look at what makes sense and recommend what is best for the programs and public health, plus I get at least a year’s reprieve. As you read these notes, it is also coming down to the close of the calendar year. I recently received the fiscal year roll-up of annual giving for our class. (The Institute’s fiscal year ends June 30.) Thanks to all of you that contributed to the Institute this past year, and some of you were very generous givers. I know I’ve “preached” about the budget situation at VMI, and it continues to be tight, so every donation is critical. I must report to you, however, that our percentage of alumni participation dropped from 41.4 percent last year to only 31.7 percent this year. That really is a trend I hope we can correct. This figure means that nearly 70 percent of our class did not contribute anything back to VMI this past year. I know times are tough right now, and several of you are out of work, but there are a lot of us who could contribute something, and I am asking you to do that. We are almost halfway through VMI’s

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fiscal year, and now is the time to get in a donation for tax purposes this year. It really is easy, and you can log into the VMI Web site and even make a donation using a credit card. All of us have benefited from the Institute in various ways. So, if possible, please take time to give a little something back! I have mentioned in the past that in our neighborhood, called The Enclave, there are actually three VMI graduates. Larry Parker was in the class of ’59. He and his wife, Susan, came over recently, as Pat and I were hosts for our monthly neighborhood game night. Larry brought us the film Mardi Gras to watch. The film, made in the 1950s, was about some VMI cadet’s adventures and stars Pat Boone. Larry said he is in the film as one of the characters seen in the judo demonstration. Phil Taylor ’65 likewise lives just up the street and his wife is also named Susan. Their son, Marshall, clearly a big VMI fan, will have had a kidney transplant done by the time you read these notes. The surgery is scheduled for September. Please keep this VMI family in your thoughts and prayers. It most likely will be around Thanksgiving when you read these notes, so I wanted to close by saying thanks to all of you for the support you provide and the information you send back to me. I also want to remind you that if I don’t have a correct e-mail for you, please pass it on, so I can get you “in the loop.” Hopefully, we’ll see some of you this fall, either at ball games or perhaps Founders Day. And lastly, Pat and I wish you a very Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah and Happy New Year and hope that you have a fantastic holiday season.


Snookie Parker

Summertime Greetings to All. I’m writing during the dog days of August. Was this not a scorcher of a summer? Man! Just attended a Tim McGraw outdoor concert in Raleigh, NC – was approaching 100 degrees at night, no less, and about 98% humidity – wow! That NC crowd was sweltering. Brought new meaning to his song, “live like you were dying!” However, it was not so bad for a boy that had grown up in FL when air conditioning was a luxury – just another day in the life. Ought to get used to it. Great concert, though! Kind’a like Jimmy Buffet gone country … lots of sing-a-longs by the crowd. Enough about that. How about this: Brother Rats Rally! Cpl. Michael Kilcullen, son of Pattie and BR Don Kilcullen, is in a very isolated area of Afghanistan where no Americans

have been before. In addition to no electricity, no hot meals, etc., there are no laundry facilities. Michael, being far more squared away than his old man, did pack extra T-Shirts, etc., but having limited space and a long checklist of required items to bring and without the ability to do laundry, Mike basically wears his underwear until they wear out (been there, done that). With the climate he’s in, the salt from all the sweat quickly cakes up and chafes under all the gear he carries, and in no time at all, he has “holy” underwear which he can only toss. Pattie and Don have of course been providing Mike with health and comfort items, but the underwear replacement mission left them flummoxed – 24 sets to get through the remainder of this deployment, and it MUST be GREEN. BR Kilcullen queried a few BRs for assistance: Bob Trost, Gene Rice, Charley Banning, Mike Andriani and yours truly, Snookie Parker. BR Bob “The Ambassador” Trost was first to respond, even though he was on a cross-country motorcycle trip in Grand Junction, CO, you could follow along at www. Bob noted that it would be awhile before he could chase down the underwear but had this timely advice: “Send him a case of Monkey Butt powder. Best anti-chafe around and all our (motorcycle) gang uses for saddle chafe on multi-day rides.” I followed the Ambassador’s note with suggestions where we might find green undergarments and suggested a coordinated effort, otherwise young Mike might have 120 sets inbound. Within hours, a plan was in place: Lera Andriani was to acquire the T-Shirts at Fort Belvoir, because they live very close. BR Gene Rice was to order the briefs through the Quantico PX. I love it when a plan comes together. If anyone would like to send a care package and/ or card, Michael’s mailing address: Cpl. Michael P. Kilcullen, 2/6 F. Co., Unit 76274, FPO AE 09510 – 6274. “To one and all, Pattie and I send our heartfelt thanks. We love you guys!” So says Don Kilcullen. Tidewater Breakfast Club on the Rise! On 18 June, the Class of ’74 Tidewater Area Saturday Morning Breakfast Club met for lunch at Freemason’s Abbey in Norfolk with the following members in attendance: Chip Beaman, Bill Pennypacker, Sam Turner, Dave Sheppard, Paul Van Doren and yours truly, Snookie Parker. Known members of the club not attending this lunch are: Chuck Cayton, George Van Laethem, John Crawley, John P. McLaren, John Pate, John Wood, Steve Ham, Gary Trinkle, Mick Ernzen, Don Sharpe and Mike Hogan. The purchase of two class coins was transacted before a coin check was called. The meal and setting were superb, only to be outdone by the company. Plans were set in motion to resurrect the breakfast club. The Class of ’74 Tidewater Area Saturday Morning


CLASS NOTES Breakfast Club was revived July 17 when six of our BRs met at Amory’s Seafood Restaurant, Suffolk, VA. Paul Van Doren coordinated the time and place and getting the word out. Present were Paul, Sam Turner, Don Sharp (down from Goochland County, not Richmond, so says Don), George Van Laethem, Chip Beaman and Bill Pennypacker. Having Sam Turner surface and rejoin the fellowship was great. Sam Turner regaled all with stories from his days as a single VA Beach police officer. What’s more, it was discovered that Sam has made himself a home computing expert and a student of investing. Paul and Bill bragged about co-authoring the “What Next General” feature in this month’s issue of the “Armchair General” magazine. Just like the NVA Breakfast crowd, the Tidewater team took time to wail about the problems in the U.S. and brag about their children’s latest accomplishments and embarrassments. The attendees took a moment to notice who on the invite e-mail didn’t make it. Gary Trinkle did not show up; therefore, he was the focus (butt) of all jokes. Several had noticed that Mike Hogan had surfaced on Facebook but had not responded to follow-up messages. Don Sharpe reports that Mike was not in attendance but was doing his

civic duty in a Goochland Parks & Recreation Board meeting. Mick Ernzen apologized for not making the breakfast and offered me the following commentary upon reviewing the pictures. “ … as I looked at the pictures, your words from the reunion came back to me when you mentioned how the class conducting their 40th Reunion had lost so many people and that in five years that might be our class in the same boat. Therefore, it was time to get everyone in attendance at our next reunion. Well, as I look at these pictures, it took me back a few years when I used to look at the Alumni Review and all those ‘old’ classes and their group pics … just dawned on me seeing George … ‘THEY’ are now ‘US’! D#%@, you look old, George!” Hey, it is what it is! The path forward for the club is to have this breakfast at 8:30 a.m. on the 3rd Saturday every other month, rotating between three locations. The next will be Sept. 18, 8:30 a.m., at a location yet to be determined in the Hampton vicinity. (Sam said he’d check out locations.) After that, the breakfast will be Nov. 20 at “d’ Egg,” 206 Main Street, Norfolk. Well done, gang! Mike Fisher sent greetings from Orlando, FL. Mike visited Craig Smith in Sarasota, FL, while Sarah stayed in Orlando with their daughter. Mike

joined Sarah and daughter – went to Sea World. It turns out that Pat Flynn and I were in Orlando on business at the same time (June 8-10). However, somehow we missed seeing Mike. I hope Craig Smith is improving his handicap … a paltry 1 or 2, last I heard – embarrassing. Steve Orr’s first grandson, Stephen R. Orr V, received his provisional appointment to VMI, class of 2032. Upon hearing that date, I refer you back to Mick Ernzen’s observations in a previous paragraph. “ ... ‘THEY’ are now ‘US’! D#%@, you look old, George!” Steve’s oldest son is almost half way through his Ph.D. program. His second son (first lieutenant, Signal Corps) is expecting to leave the Army at the end of this year and pursue career opportunities related to his field of study – computer science – while having an inactive reserve commitment. His two younger children each have one more year of college remaining. However, the big news is that after approximately 18 months, 600 hours of study and 14 hours of testing over four exam parts, Steve has received his Certified Management Accountant (CMA) certification. Congrats, Steve! A B.S. in physics to a CMA – go figure! Sometimes, that’s where life’s opportunities take one. Now, Steve has to deal with the annual CPE requirements. Never ends, does it! Well done, Steve!!!

Class of 1974 Photo right: George Van Laethem, left, and Chip Beaman at Amory’s Seafood Restaurant in Suffolk, Virginia. At the Tidewater Breakfast Brunch were, below, left: Chip Beaman with Bill Pennypacker. Class Agent Snookie Parker said, “Pennypacker’s eyes were closed in all pictures – this was the best shot. Stay awake, Bill!” Below, right: Paul Van Doren and Sam Turner.



CLASS NOTES Craig Smith working on his handicap and Steve Orr working on certifications – is there no justice in this world? Bob Johnson started a program at Walter Reed (see site in link below). Bob is still on active duty in the Pentagon until at least Sept. 15 and still on the Army’s Quadrennial Defense Review (QDR) team. Wife Pam is now working at the State Department. Her office is near Fort Meyer at the Foreign Service Institute, which is where the State Department trains their people. She holds a Top Secret security clearance, so there are things she now can’t tell Bob. Biggest news in the Johnson household is an impending grandson – a first for Bob and Pam – any day now. The good news is the grandson will live in Baltimore, so it is close by. http://www. media/resource/Lists/wrarticles/DispForm. aspx?Id=576& Mike Andriani reports that things are going well for the Andriani clan. Wife Lera is back at INOVA Hospital working as a case manager. Son Mike III is taking Economics 101/102 over the summer so as to complete his econ requirements and lessen his academic load for third class year. Mike finished his Rat year with a 3.05 GPA and is looking to join the VMI Ranger Platoon next year to sharpen his light infantry skill. Mike and Mike recently attended a dinner with RDC legend Steve Fogleman ’71 which was sponsored by a local Alexandrian Civil War group. The dinner’s guest speaker discussed VMI men who served with Mosby’s rangers during “the War.” I understand that it was a super evening, and Fogleman looked great and is going strong! Thanks for the note, Mike. Proud parent moment for Snap Carlock. Snap’s daughter, Catherine, has a Web site that she and three others from the journalism school developed for their last project at W&L. Black in Lexington: splash.html Catherine has graduated and left for San Francisco to intern for Red Undercoffer was home on break from Baghdad. It looks like his next assignment will be in Afghanistan. Red on Iraq – “Combat troops are out in August, and that is it! Interestingly, the anniversary of the helicopter evacuation of Saigon received a great deal of play in the Iraq and Iran media, so go figure the hidden meaning, and things could get interesting.” Red likes Afghanistan. He has legitimate credibility as a Mujahidin in Charlie Wilson’s War 85-87. Red did mention that during this past May, he and roomie Alan Vicory both experienced losses, with the deaths of VMI men who had inspired them to attend the Institute. In addition to both men being VMI graduates, they were combat veterans and distinguished civil engineers. Alan lost his Uncle, James M. Strickland Jr. ’51. According to Red,

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Jim Strickland was an inspiration to both during their cadetship with his quiet, unassuming yet strong presence and leadership. Jim was also the father-in-law of Mike Cole. In Red’s case, upon returning from Iraq in early June, he was informed that John M. Wray Jr. ’42 had died. The following war story has been passed on as part of Undercoffer lore. During WWII, John had been the XO of Red’s uncle’s (Lt. Col. Charles E. Undercoffer) cav troop (troop commander) in the 107th Cavalry. John joined the 107th Cav, an Ohio National Guard outfit, in 29 Palms, CA, just after graduating from the horse Cavalry Basic Course in Fort Riley, KS. Together, they fought their way across Europe, ending their part of WWII with their troop doing the linkup with the 5th Army coming up from Italy at Brenner Pass, Italy. One family story Red’s uncle told about John was about a combat action in southern Germany. According to legend, their troop was in the lead, with orders to go like hell in order to cut off Hitler’s regiments from retreating into the Alps to establish the fabled “Nazi National Redoubt.” It seems they were just making a crossing of the Isar River when all hell broke loose with a near ambush. The troop had only one map, and it was held by the commander (Chas E. Undercoffer). Everyone was tired and sleeping as they could. John was dozing in his jeep near the rear of the column, where XOs generally operate and was awakened by a series of explosions and small arms fire. According to Red’s uncle, John looked forward to see a massive explosion and a building with most of its roof coming down on Red’s uncle’s command half track. To John and all onlookers, it appeared that the command track was destroyed and all occupants dead or wounded. John later commented that all he could think of in the thick of the shooting was, “Lord, help me; the commander’s dead, he has the map and I don’t even know where we are!” To make a long story short, the troop performed per SOP and immediately returned fire, shooting its way out. When the smoke cleared, the commander’s track and the commander/crew were unscathed and the precious map still in the hands of the commander. With that, they continued the march to the Brenner Pass. Alan Vicory’s “Uncle Jimmy” was indeed an amazing man – a VMI man to his core. He was decorated (Bronze Star) in the Korean War, a partner in a large civil engineering firm in Roanoke (Hayes, Seay, Mattern and Mattern), and an avid sailor. Alan’s family looked up to Uncle Jimmy as the example the Vicory family hoped Al would emulate (Al has emulated to some degree but claims he will never come close). Red rightly claims that he and Al are both better men, having been associated with John and Jim through VMI. Charley Banning chimed in with “ … an all too familiar ‘ring to it’ – our father, uncles and heroes are succumbing to the maladies of old age. They

were all great men who honorably answered their nation’s calling.” Like Red’s uncle, Charles – Charley’s dad – was a part of the forces that fought their way to Germany. In Charley’s father’s case, he started in North Africa, marched through Italy and stayed on as occupational forces when the war concluded in Germany. Charley’s dad was steaming across the North Atlantic in May 1942 when he got word that his sister, Julia, was born. At the time, a typo on the telegram to his dad spelled his sister’s name as Julius. The poor guy thought he had a baby boy!!! He never saw her until she was six, when he was first allowed to return home from Germany in 1948. I think we all have a VMI hero we latched onto when we were young – someone who inspired us, someone to emulate. Charley speaks for us all when he says he is sorry to hear about these great guys with VMI heritage passing. They have a wonderful legacy. Speaking of legacy, I refer to Mick Ernzen’s earlier observation: “… just dawned on me seeing George ... ‘THEY’ are now ‘US!’” I wonder – are we inspiring? Hope so! I’d like to think we would not be VMI men if we were not! CLASS AGENT PLEA! Don’t be caught without your class coin. If you need one, send $10 (cost of coin and postage). Please forward any news regarding births, deaths, illnesses, marriages and other significant events concerning your family and/or careers. Brother Rats are interested and do care. I know e-mail addresses have a half-life of about six months. Keep us current. Send your updated e-mail address to me, Charley Banning or Kevin Nettrour (our Web master) nettrour@accessus. net. Check out the Web site. Send me a note. Yada, Yada, Yada and Yaba Daba Dooooo! Warm Regards … Snookie


Art Nunn III

Hello, My Brothers, This is my first class notes submission, and I must open with an apology. I did not know that I would be writing this particular set of notes until a few days before the due date, thinking that I would be starting with the November submission. Obviously, I was mistaken (a chronic condition), so I have little to go on. Next time, look for something more in depth. Let me tell you that I am excited and humbled to be taking over for our very own class William Shakespeare, the honorable Robert Mills. To say that Robert has done a remarkable job over the last five years would be an understatement of significant proportions. He is indeed a tough act to follow. Of course, I rarely understood


CLASS NOTES his poetic prose, but maybe that is just me. Prior to retiring from the class agent position, Robert had a great time groovin’ around the Big Easy at the New Orleans Jazzfest in April and made it through unscathed, even without Andy Dearman to watch his back. It was interesting, though, because without Andy, the female impersonators on Bourbon St. didn’t show nearly as much interest. Mr. Mills is heading to NYC for a few days at the U.S. Open before the Reunion, so he can see how tennis is suppose to be played. Robert’s son, Edward ’07, and daughter, Valerie, were in Richmond to attend the August wedding of Wadsworth Bugg IV ’07 and Josie Hanners, before Valerie flew to Nicaragua and ultimately Arequipa, Peru, to do volunteer work/study while deferring her admission to Villanova Law School until next August. Over the past several months, I have had the pleasure of running into several of our Brother Rats at different occasions. Our class was well represented at the Keydet Club Leadership Dinner in June. Tom Mason and Mark Hall wandered in from Roanoke, and both are doing quite well. Tom did express concern, however, that there appears to be a significant paucity of eligible women of our age group in the Star City area, but the rest of us were left wondering whether or not they are absent in numbers or simply in hiding. I will not speculate farther on this quandary.

Kimo Wong made it to the dinner, as he always does. Life remains active for Grandpa Kimo, and he is always willing to share photographs of his growing family. Allen Morgan was there, as well, with a freshly grown beard that he discovered while vacationing in Italy. I guess he forgot to pack a razor, and he and Sandy have come to appreciate the new look. Speaking of Allen’s lovely wife, she purchased a wonderful gift for Allen at the Keydet Club fundraising auction in Richmond earlier this year. This involved an afternoon of lunch and detailed meetings with Coach Sparky Woods and his assistants. Allen was gracious enough to include yours truly, Kimo Wong, Oliver Way, Mike Hunter, Tom Baur, Lewis Graybill ’62 and Dennis Merklinger ’62 in the activities. It was a great deal of fun. Coach Woods is a very engaging speaker and a great emissary of the VMI Spirit. I had the questionable honor of seeing Dave and Tana Schuyler and Mike Fleenor at an engagement party that Judy and I held for our oldest daughter in July. Uncle Dave is Uncle Dave. What more is there to be said? Mike has resumed his full time medical practice in Bristol, VA, after having recovered fully from a fight with cancer last year. He looked great, and both he and Dave were looking forward to our 35th. I hear often from Randy Frank. He and Terry

have moved from Oregon to Bellingham, WA. They have settled in nicely and are continuing to enjoy life in the Pacific Northwest. Randy and Terry were also looking forward to the reunion. Paul Bernard reports that he is enjoying his relatively new position with Carson, Ashley & Associates in Warrenton, VA, and that his new position is keeping him closer to home. This is a great benefit, as Abby is recovering from back surgery to repair an old horse riding injury, suffered while she was at Sem, and is heading into pancreas surgery about the time of our reunion. We all wish her well and a speedy recovery. Bo and Nancy Temple report that Nancy has recovered nicely from knee replacement surgery and that Bo has completed a series of melanoma treatments at Walter Reed. Meredyth, Peter and J.P. are all doing extremely well in their individual pursuits, and Bo states that Meredyth has been a tremendous help to him and to Nancy over the past couple of months. Bill Glasgow is alive and well in Victoria, TX. Bill is working as an environmental compliance coordinator for Vista Chemical Company, and my company has been working with him recently, which is how we connected. Bill is happy in his relatively new position, but he confesses that he did not realize how hot it gets in that part of Texas. There is a rumor going around that Maj. Gen.

Class of 1975 Photos clockwise from above, left: – Dean Armstrong standing next to the 5th Marine Memorial, 28th Regiment, 5th Marines, atop Mount Suribachi, Iwo Jima, on March 3, 2010. – Armstrong holding a flag with a Marine atop Mount Suribachi. – Standing in front of the Great Wall of China at Bodaling Pass north of Beijing, China.



CLASS NOTES Eddie Spain is actually still alive and well but will not be able to attend our reunion due to demands on his time in Europe. This information is as yet unconfirmed, and any sightings confirming this rumor would be appreciated. John Young recently started a new position with General Dynamics, where he is taking over a senior role in business development. The change has John relocating from Burlington, VT, to Charlotte, NC. Unfortunately, that put a halt to his plans to attend our reunion. Speaking of taking on new positions, Chris Smart has moved from Abu Dhabi, where he completed 20 years with BP, to Buenos Aires, where he is a petro-physicist for Apache. He is awaiting receipt of all of his furniture and his toys, while trying to learn to speak Spanish without inadvertently insulting someone. Rich Mines participated in a Mercer on Mission trip to Malawi, Africa, from June 7 to 29. Rich and another professor led a group of nine undergraduate students on a three-week service learning mission. The team worked at two orphanages, establishing vegetable gardens and a fruit orchard and then constructed a tree nursery for the Makoli Village near Zomba. They also collected water samples and performed various analyses to determine the water quality at Mangochi Orphanage and Educational Training (MOET) and Makoli Village. Rich said that it was a very rewarding experience. Rick Hening reported in to say that life is good in Rocky Mount, NC, where he is still with McLane Carolina. Rick and Suzanne had a whirlwind of a summer, beginning with their son, Sam’s, graduation and party, a family reunion in Atlanta, and a quick trip to Virginia with Sam to Camp Easter Seals. Rick, Suzanne, and Sam were then off to Orlando for the 38th Annual National Down Syndrome Congress Convention. At least they were able to follow this with a couple of days at Walt Disney World. Rick (Dawg) Law wrote from Golden, CO, to ask me where I am and what I am doing. Now, I admit I am new to this class agent thing, but Dawg, I think you are supposed to be telling me that stuff! Oh, well … as long as we are all communicating, that is a good thing. As for me (since Dawg asked), I had an incredible experience this summer, as I accompanied my father, Bill Nunn ’43, on a trip to the Moselle River region of France for a series of celebrations honoring the troops of Patton’s Third Army who liberated that region in 1944. From village to village, it was a series of very moving tributes to the men of the Greatest Generation, and it was a great privilege for me to be a part of it. While over there, we were accompanied by Maj. Gen. John McLaren ’74 who is the current commander of the 80th

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Division. Other than that, life is busy, as Judy and I prepare for the marriage of our two oldest daughters (Meredith and Andrea) within six months of one another. Our other two daughters are doing well, with Pammy teaching middle school near Charlotte and Alison in her senior year at Montreat College. Our son, Matt, is deployed again with the Navy Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron-23. He had just returned from a tour in Iraq when he got sent out again a few months later. We are not sure where he is this time, but we receive e-mail from him occasionally, and his spirits are always high. By the time these notes are published, our 35th Reunion will be a fond memory, but let me take this time to recognize Jelly Bear Taylor for all of his efforts in pulling the reunion activities together. There is no doubt that it will be spectacular. Once again, many thanks to Robert Mills for a job well done as class agent for the last five years. I am honored to try to follow in his footsteps. Stay safe, stay healthy and stay in touch. If you don’t stay in touch, I may have to start making things up! … Artie


William Bhatta

Brother Rats: These notes were written on 15 Aug. 2010. There is good news and sad news. First, the good news. Greg Hedley always had the best intentions to send in a BR update after he read the quarterly class notes, but he actually did it in June. Greg and his wife have been married 28 years and remain busy with four children. Their son, Matthew, graduated from Radford with an accounting degree, and their youngest son finished his sophomore year at ODU – he attended VMI for one semester and then finished his freshman year at Tidewater Community College. The Headleys had a busy summer, with marriage ceremonies and William & Mary alumni. Their oldest son, Jeffrey, finished his first year of medical school at Eastern Virginia Medical School. He married on 26 June in the W&M Chapel. Both Jeffrey and his fiancée are W&M graduates. Their daughter, Kimberly, finished her first year of teaching at St. Andrew the Apostle school in Fairfax, VA. She married on 31 July in Williamsburg. You guessed it; she and her fiancé are also W&M graduates. Greg has worked for the Department of Defense for the past 34 years. He attended Tom Turlip’s retirement luncheon several months ago and worked with Rich Mathews for a number of years at the Norfolk Naval Shipyard.

Jerry Eggleston wrote from Utah! He has worked for the Union Pacific Railroad the past six years and hopes to retire with them in another 10. He was originally working out of Salt Lake City but moved to Helper, UT, to work there temporarily. Jerry has two children: John, 20 years old, serving a two-year mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints in Leeds, England; and Danielle, 15 years old, a straight “A” sophomore in high school and junior varsity cheerleader. Jerry said if anybody loves to ski, come to Utah! Jim Delisio has been working in the Washington, D.C., area for Ecolab since 2004. He said it is simpler to describe his job if he just says, “I sell soap for commercial dish machines and laundry systems. I take care of every dish machine on Capitol Hill, Air Force One and many places in between.” Jim was named Territory Manager of the Year in 2008 (out of about 1800 TMs). He is still umpiring slow pitch softball and trying to justify his 2002 induction into the Amateur Softball Association Hall of Fame. Jim’s wife, Leigh Anne, is still a preschool “every person” at Arlington United Methodist Church. She enjoys being an almost-empty nester with grandchildren. The Delisios have three children and two grandchildren. Kate is married to an Army veteran; he returned from Afghanistan in April. They have two children (the grandchildren), Gabriela and Tyler Bryant Good. Their youngest daughter, Carrie, is a senior at George Mason University. She is majoring in communications and networking her way into satellite radio on the baseball station. Their son, A.J., graduated from Herndon High School this year. He is searching for a culinary apprenticeship and works at a local restaurant. Jim tried to talk A.J. out of his career aspiration, “but he is 18 and knows what he wants to do, which puts him that much further ahead of me at that age.” Jim was comfortable with A.J.’s choice, “as long as he buys his cleaning supplies from me.” Jim’s dad (Lou Delisio ’52) is doing well. He turned 80 this summer and is pursuing his fourth career – golf. Lou is proud to say that before his

Class of 1976: Hunt Ozmer, right, met Dave Heatwole and his wife, Eliza, for coffee at Seattle International Airport on his way back to Roanoke from Vancouver, British Columbia.


CLASS NOTES last birthday, he shot his age! but J.R’s world has been turned inside-out and with people – standing room only; many stood Clyde Furr reported everyone is fine. Clyde’s upside-down. outside. It certainly gave me an appreciation for son, John, is an Army captain living in HeidelHere is some VMI trivia from Alan Mills: Chip’s outstanding reputation in the Roanoke berg, Germany. His job is to plan, escort and aide “While I was surfing on the television, I stumbled area. (If you missed the article about Charles Peter in VIP visits to Europe. His second son, Matthew, onto the A Team show. Got to wondering what Deyerle, class of 1842, check it out on page 13, works in Oklahoma erecting metal buildings. the actors were up to, so I Google’d the main Issue #2 - 2010 Alumni Review.) Here are several Clyde said, “He’s in the middle of nowhere, and in stars. It seems Dwight Schultz, a.k.a. ‘Howling BR memories of Chip: Jim Delisio: “Chip and I Oklahoma, that’s out there a ways. He’s enjoying Mad Murdoch,’ the crazy pilot for the team, is a played on the tennis team when Don Jamison ’57 himself, has a girl friend and beer. All is well in conservative talk show host these days. Dwight was coach. Chip knew what was important in life his world!” Clyde’s daughter, Katie, is married to has a daughter, Ava, who, according to Wikipedia, and never worried about an errant backhand. He an Army captain stationed in Vilseck, Germany. graduated from VMI in 2009.” was as self-effacing as anyone in our class. This Katie teaches first grade in the local Department Did you know Razz Waff was a senior VMI was evident during the last Ozmer golf tournaof Defense school system. Clyde and Mary are alumnus? When he was contacted to update his ment. Chip didn’t play very well, but he was a big busy as certified NRA referees – they officiate at profile for the VMI Register of Former Cadets, he donor for the cause, and he was the entertainment national matches for small-bore (.22 cal) rifles. At discovered he was listed as a member of the class for the day. His name was misspelled on the big the National Metric Small-bore Championship in of 1926. (William E. Cantrell (’26) currently banner by the driving range, and we laughed Bristol, IN, Mary was the chief statistical officer, holds the most senior alumnus honor.) about that for three holes. Hunt and I were part of and Clyde was the chief challenge referee. The Next time you see Mack Curle, ask him to the foursome, and we were wondering what the match director for the metric match holds more relate his story about driving down Route 288 in hell he was so upset about. He ended the round Olympic medals than anyone else in the world, Chesterfield, VA, right next to Tom Moody’s car, by saying he was glad to get our group to laugh, regardless of sport. From there, they went to blowing the horn and hanging out the window with his jokes and his swing. He was what our Camp Perry, OH, where they were both challenge waving to him – Tom ignored him completely. class is all about – quietly successful and true referees for the National Small-bore Rifle ChamFirst Call – While I have thoroughly enjoyed to our BRs. I will miss him … ” Jim Joustra: pionships. Clyde said the construction industry is being the 1976 class agent, it is time to begin the “Chip was a BR in the truest sense and a good, not very active. “It seems the jobs I bid on are let search for my replacement. Traditionally, we have good friend and wonderful man. He went before to folks who are bidding 50% less than me. How “crowned” a new agent at each class reunion. The his time and we’ll all miss him very much. His they do it, I don’t know, but I do know I can stay 35th Reunion is officially 9-10 Sept. 2011. If you loss is hard to fathom.” Ares Koumis: “Chip home and not make money – easier than working are interested in performing the job, let me know. was just a ‘gets-no-better’ combination of those my tail off and not making money!” If no one volunteers, you will be stuck with me. two defining (and sadly, endangered) uniquely By the time you read this, Razz Waff will be a I end these notes with sad news: Thurman American personalities: the ‘good old boy’ and the major general. (He was recommended for promo- (Chip) Deyerle passed away suddenly on 23 July Southern Gentleman. For Chip, whose memory I tion on 4 Aug.) Razz completed his tour as deputy at his home. He is survived by his parents and salute and untimely passing I mourn … you made commanding general (Individual Mobilization Aug- sister, June (his former wife), and three children this humble Yankee’s time at VMI entertaining, mentee), U. S. Army Human Resource Command, (Shaver, Holli and Katherine). Jake Berberich, bearable – and so memorable.” J.R. Mott: “Chip Alexandria, VA, on 30 Sept. He was reassigned to Bob Gleason, Andre Koneczny, Hunt Ozmer, was more than a BR to Mei and myself. He was the 99th Regional Readiness Command, Fort Dix, Jim Mallon, J.R. Mott, Mark Sculley, Phil and always will be a member of our household NJ, as the commanding general. His official change Haymes and I attended Chip’s memorial service here. And he was as generous a person as I have of command was 23 Oct. Razz, I hope this is close in Roanoke on 31 July. The chapel was packed known. As some may know, Chip stayed here to accurate – from the Internet: “The for the first summer that he was 99th Regional Readiness Command is project manager and lead engineer comprised of 185 units served by more for the new Glasgow bridge. I had than 20,000 soldiers. Units span the specgone back to Germany to bring trum of the Combat Support and Combat Mei to the U.S. In the meantime, Service Support branches of the Army. Chip had taken it upon himself Of the 99th’s units, 41 are designated to maintain the grounds and the as Force Support Package units – units house. It was a summer of drought, which will be the first called in the event and he saved the yard. He had of a global crisis or contingency. The cleaned the house for Mei’s arrival. 99th Regional Readiness Command Frankly, I was a little embarrassed is responsible for over 200 facilities by Chip’s extreme generosity, but including Army Reserve Centers, Army that was Chip. His nickname here Maintenance Support Activities, Equipwas the ‘Poolmeister.’ That guy ment Concentration Sites, local training was a scientist when it came to areas and air support facilities. The 99th pools. I was in the pool yesterday is responsible for an annual budget of trying to get it to Chip standards – more than $70 million dollars.” not possible. That was a sad day. Class of 1976: Roommates at the 25th Class Reunion And now, the BR minute: On 9 July Last note: no matter where Chip were, from left, Barry Ratliff, Richard Keith, Chip Deyerle at 2:38 a.m., J.R. and Mei Mott were was camped out, he always took and Tom Diggs. (Editor’s Note: Sadly, Chip Deyerle died blessed with their first child – Yvonne. his VMI portrait … says a lot.” on July 23, 2010. His obituary appears in the Taps section She weighed 7 lbs., 3 ounces and was Paul Parker: “One of the many of this Review.) 20 inches long. All are doing fine, things I remember about Chip goes



CLASS NOTES way back to high school. In 1972, most of the seniors were going to Virginia Tech. Two of us were going to VMI, Greg Lucado and I. Then, we discovered Chip was accepted to VMI. That really blew me away … He was a classy, cool guy … I was not. Anyway he gave us instant status – classy guys go to VMI, too!” (Editor’s Note: Chip Deyerle’s obituary appears in the Taps section of this Review.)

Bland Massie


Rah, Super ’77, Rah, Rah, Rah … Well, at least this time there is something to tell you guys. Moe needs the scoop to deliver the poop! On 16 May ’10, Mike Hutchings ’10 and 247 of his BRs graduated. Eric, the proud dad,

administered the oath to Mike as he was commissioned a second lieutenant in the U.S. Army (Infantry). The Keydet Club held their third auction for academic support on the 22nd of May at the Jefferson Hotel in Richmond, and ’77 was out in force. Those representing Super ’77 were Meg and Bert Deacon, Billy Hupp and Dianna, Charlotte and John Krovic, Hope and John Marshall, Jane and Moe Massie, Ellen and Buzzy Northern, Gail and Buster Pace, Patti and Chris Perry, and Travis and Tommy Underhill. Chris Perry sponsored a very nice bathroom makeover. Buzzy served as the evenings M.C. The dollars were flowing!!! The Keydet Club also had their Leadership Outing on 4 June ’10. Moe saw Will Bynum and Chris Perry present and accounted for. Sid Huguenin wrote to say he got married in Hawaii. He sent two pictures from his I phone. The resolution was not good enough to be used here – so Moe was told by VMI. Just as

well; we would have had to crop Sid out of the picture anyway. Hey, Sid, you forgot to tell Moe your bride’s name; surely you haven’t forgotten it already? Tim Thompson’s “Team Dragon Force” continues to win championships – 31 trophies and 10 first places in the Battle of 7 Cities Martial Arts Competition. Congrats, Tim! Check it out at Susa and Michael Jo Freeman were also married since our last update. Diane and Barney Knotts, Marty and Bob Manteuffel, Gail and Buster Pace, and John Quackenbush made it to the wedding. Mary was kind enough to send the news and photo. She also said Carolyn and Ed Anderson came to Dallas the 4th of July to visit them. Ed flew his plane but had to avoid a lot of bad weather. Glad to hear you both made it safely. (See photo accompanying these notes.) Speaking of photos, there is one of Eric Hutchings with second lieutenant son Mike and Maj. Gen. J.D. Johnson in Fort Lewis,

Class of 1977

Photos clockwise from top, left: - Ed and Carolyn Anderson, right, with Martha and Bob Manteuffel in Dallas, Texas, for the 4th of July. - Attending Michael and Susa Freeman’s wedding were, from left, Buster Pace, John Quackenbush, Barney Knots and Bob Manteuffel. - Former VMI Commandant Col. Eric Hutchings and his son, Michael ’10, at the May 15th Commissioning Ceremony. Michael was administered the oath by his

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father and commissioned a second lieutenant in the U.S. Army Infantry, like his father. - In Fort Lewis, Washington, were, from left, Col. Eric Hutchings, son 2nd Lt. Michael Hutchings ’10 and Maj. Gen. J.D. Johnson. Johnson is the I Corps Commander at Fort Lewis, and Michael Hutchings was on temporary duty, serving as a platoon trainer. - “Dad’s last par,” Aug. 10, 2010, Bland Massie ’53 with son Bland Massie Jr. at the Pine Needles Country Club, Fort Valley, Georgia.


CLASS NOTES Washington. J.D. was the I Corps commander. In case you haven’t heard, J.D. is getting his third star. Congratulations, J.D. Hoorah! Who knows? You may take Gen. Peay’s ’62 place when he retires as the VMI superintendent!!! FYI, 275 new cadets attended the STP (Summer Transition Program) this past summer. 501 cadets matriculated in August. The largest Rat Mass ever. Fifty-nine of the 501 were female cadets, bringing the total to almost 200 in the current Corps. Thankfully Old, New and Third barracks are all completely renovated and construction completed. Moe has had the chance to see Steve Kelly who now lives in Lynchburg and Bert Lassiter who has been here on business. Hopefully, the three of us can have lunch together next time. Moe ran into Wanda and Scott Snow at the Greenbrier Classic Golf Tournament on 31 July. Both are doing well. Great seeing them and a great golf tournament. Bob Hartzell e-mailed to say he had lunch with Rick Hagreen in Seattle and that Tammy and Rick are doing fine. Rick is an organizational effectiveness consultant to companies. Harts also saw J.D.’s sign at Fort Lewis, but J.D. was TDY at the time. Bob said he and Debbie will be doing their tailgate again this football season. Moe sure hopes so! David Skeen e-mailed from Austin to say he is still with IBM and working on Tivoli systems management software. His last child was off to college in Arizona in September – Empty Nest – alright. Mike Parish e-mailed to say Mike Smith lives two blocks from him, and he sees him occasionally. He also may see Steve Turley over Thanksgiving while Steve visits in-laws in Lincoln, NE. Speaking of Thanksgiving, Moe hopes you all have a nice one and a great Christmas. While Moe is talking about Thanksgiving and being thankful, let me tell you a short story. Imagine that you do a surprise visit to see your folks 600 miles away. Until you pull in the driveway, they have no clue you are coming to see them. You spend all day Sunday catching up until after midnight. Monday, the three of you run errands and go out for dinner. Tuesday morning, you and your dad play golf together and you finally win – it has taken you 55 years to do that. That night, you see the Braves baseball team win on T.V. (your dad’s favorite team). Wednesday, you plan to leave for home around 10:00 a.m., but your trip is delayed, because at 5:30 a.m., your father suffers a massive stroke and dies at 8:30 p.m. that same day. Moe tells you this because on 11 Aug. ’10, this happened to him. So, why is he thankful? My father never suffered and went quickly, sparing my mother a long and exhausting illness, and I was there to enjoy


my father for three days and be there for my mother. If it had to be, I could not have written a better script. Something told me I needed to get to Georgia to see my parents. My father had not been sick, and there was no reason to suspect anything. All Moe wants to say is God is in control, and if you have a tugging feeling telling you to see someone or make something right between you and someone else, do not ignore that feeling. Do something about it, because it may be your last chance. I’m so thankful I was given that opportunity and for once, I listened. And now you know the rest of the story. Rah, Rah VMI Whole Da*# Class. In the Spirit of VMI, Never Say Die! … Moe


Tom Brown

Greetings, Brother Rats. As you read this, I certainly hope the weather has moved to the cool side, as this summer was rather hot. Speaking of hot, here is the hottest news from around the class. Matt Schell will be in Virginia for the Lock Haven and W&M football games. Matt also says he is a grandfather again for the third time. His name is Matix Yoshihito. His father gave him his middle name in honor of his late grandfather Yoshihito, which means Joseph in English. Congratulations, Grandpa Matt. Tim Fredrikson just recently finished working on an independent film, shot locally by David Stewart Productions, called “Return of the Cheyenne Kid – Part 2.” He was originally slated to do just some background extra work, but Tim eventually ended up with one of the supporting roles, as “Dirty Juan Jose,” the so-called leader of the “bad guy’s gang”! It is actually a short film, patterned after the 50’s western serials, and looks to be a great little piece! Do you get a residual, Tim? Short notes came from several BRs. Stan Walchock was trying to think if he and Pam have done anything interesting lately. Work, eat, sleep, repeat was the reply. Sounds like a good constitution to me. Jeff Yates said he didn’t have much to report other than to say that his son, Tyler, class of 2013, successfully made it through the Ratline and his Rat year and is into his third class year. Jeff said Tyler did much better than he did in his first year. Jeff said, “I am very proud!” Speaking of dads and sons, Jay Hutt and his son, John, went with Bland Massie ’77 to the PGA golf tourney at Greenbrier and ran into BR Bill Hardy and wife Gay, who were staying all week on the property at a friend’s house. Jay asked if she needed any

new friends for next year. Jay had a great day – gorgeous place and beautiful course. Jay also saw Don Jameson and Dan Troppoli, former director of Admissions at the I. Jay’s son, John, got an autograph from Jerry West, although he just had to ask, “Dad – who was that old guy?” AARRGGGHHH! Bob Magnan asked if I remembered the old Chinese curse, “May you live in interesting times”? Well, in the past 12 months, Bob had three angioplasties and buried his mother on New Year’s Eve. Needing a break badly, Bob decided to cross a big item off the “Bucket List” and took advantage of the deal of a lifetime; he went bow hunting in Africa. Bob says it was a great trip, in spite of uncooperative weather. Well, Bob, that sure was an interesting time for you. Bob Kirby checked in from the Outer Banks with a little news. Tom Sliwoski and his wife, Cathy, and two children visited their new home in Edenton, NC, for an extended weekend on Aug. 6. Tom, his son, and Bob spent a couple of days fishing on the Chowan River, and their families enjoyed reminiscing about the good old days. Bob and Michelle have spent the last 18 months constructing their home on the Chowan River. They formally moved there in June after their youngest, Sarah, graduated from high school. Sarah is slated to enroll at East Carolina University. Alec Earle checked in, reporting he completed the Culpeper, VA, Sprint Triathlon and has his sights set on the Nations Olympic Distance Triathlon in September. Alec saw Ralph and Mary Williams in San Antonio. Ralph is working hard as the Air Force Personnel Center (AFPC) engineer at Randolph AFB. Ralph has numerous huge (multi-million dollar) renovation projects started or in planning. He’s trying to fix years of neglect, as only he can! They love him at AFPC! Way to go, Ralph. Chip Schelhorn reports his family did a road trip to FSU in Tallahassee. His youngest daughter, Carlie, had the lead in a movie that was presented as a thesis by one of the FSU Film Students called “Private Little Eyes.” They were able to check out the school, see the FSU football team practice and go inside the stadium. Since Chip moved to Florida, FSU has become his favorite football team in Florida. Chip just purchased club-level seats for the FSU/Miami game. They also went to check out Gainesville on the way back and went inside of The Swamp. Chip and family went on a sevenday cruise to the western Caribbean. Chip is working for Wells Fargo Insurance Services and can’t believe he has been with them going on 27 years. Wow, time goes by fast. Jim Mackin reports several BRs recently met in D.C. for lunch at the cafe Berlin: Tim McGreer, Tony Pileggi, Tim Moriarty and Bill


CLASS NOTES Pearson. Bill just moved up to northern Virginia. Jim hadn’t seen Bill or Tim McGreer in a long time, and it was a nice way to play hooky from work and enjoy catching up. Jim thinks they plan to do these lunches on a quarterly basis or so. Sounds like a great plan. Hugh Crawford sent an update. He just got back from teaching in China for 10 weeks and learned that he had just received the University System of Georgia Board of Regents University Professor of the Year Award for 2011 (boy, that’s a mouthful). After teaching at VMI for 10 years, Hugh moved to Georgia Tech, where he has been since 1996. In one of the classes featured in the award, Hugh took 15 students, read Thoreau’s Walden and then they framed up a house using only the tools Thoreau could have used. They felled trees with axes, squared timbers with broadaxes, and cut mortise and tendon joints by hand. A lot of manual labor for an English class, he says. Congratulations, Hugh. Here are some captures from monitoring those of you on Facebook: Steve Powers was busy this summer with recognition! Steve received a plaque from the president of the New Hampshire Motor Transport Association in appreciation for being chairman of the 2010 NH/ VT State Truck Driving Competition Committee. Chuck Shank vacationed in Alaska. Dac Colden celebrated his 30th anniversary at a casino. Mike McCarthy said his knee is fixed and is out of the hospital. It will be a few weeks before he is hopping around on it. Fortunately, he did not need to get a new knee this time. Good to hear. Tom Tanner had a great time with all his VMI roommates at Smith Mountain Lake (plus honorary member of room 161, Al Moore). Brother Rats Dave Lucado, Mark and Anne-Ashby McKissick, Greg and Judy Gearhart, along with Susan and Al Moore joined Tom, Ginger and neighbor Terry for a water extravaganza! Glenn Dallinger has joined the FB crew, as well. For those of you not on Facebook, come join us. There is a class page VMI 78. Come join the crew.


Michael Ogden

August 2010. Hope this finds everyone safe and well. How are those physicals coming? Tom Bright checking in: Tom retired from the Marine Corps in 2006 and moved to northeastern Pennsylvania. He promptly got divorced and went to Iraq and Afghanistan for two and half years in the private sector to help rebuild the countries. He returned

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last summer and took a civil servant position with the U.S. Army, as he “considers what I want to do when I grow up.” Tom started up a construction-focused project management firm (Pioneer Global Industries) and has been working to get it moving. Tom remarried on Oct. 10, 2009, to a beautiful Amarillo, TX, gal named Katie (welcome to the world of VMI, Katie!), and they are entrenched in South Canaan, PA. Tom has one son, Thomas, who is 11 and keeps him young at heart. J.J. Carty and wife Maria celebrated their older son, James’, graduation from Virginia Tech (What?! TECH?!) and passed through VMI on the way home. J.J. reports, “Things looked great at VMI, notwithstanding the Hill was covered with cars awaiting final dismissal of the Corps after commencement.” On the college scene, they have “one down and one to go,” with their younger boy, Patrick, entering high school. Patrick plans on making the JV baseball team right out of the gate as a freshman, so maybe they will have another up and coming star for the VMI team. “We’ll keep working on him.” J.J.’s new boss at work is Col. Dave Shutt ’82, and they have an office colleague, Brent Selnau ’89. “I have run into more VMI guys in a few years here in D.C. than I ever did in 20 years on active duty,” says J.J. I gotta say the same thing for living in the Hampton Roads area. “We” are everywhere! Not a lot from the Bill Albro front. Bro writes, as only he can, “Went to Meade’s for the VMI/Richmond picnic. Helped him cut grass, drove an ATV, took a dip in the mighty James River and was rudely awakened by Jim Elliott from my nap in the hammock. Noel Harris was there and gave me veggies from his garden, called a bunch of people names for being lightweights and not showing up … but they know who they are. Planning on a trip later in the month with Deano Smith and ‘Dan the man’ Sheahan ... no tally or tally ho on anyone else in the class.” Hey, I just relay this stuff; I don’t write it! From Doug Doerr: “I took my scouts to summer camp at Raven Knob, near Mt. Airy, NC. Our intermediate stop point was VMI, where I tried my best to talk my scouts into considering going to VMI one day. They liked the mural of the battle in J.M. Hall. They also wanted to see where I saw the ghosts in Preston Library, but alas, Preston Library was closed for the weekend. Maybe next time. At camp, we climbed Raven Knob Mountain and took a picture from up on top. I did not have my VMI flag but did have a Nalgene bottle with the VMI monogram on it.” In July, Brian Tollie, Jeff Goldhardt, Mike Staso, Randy Hawkins, John Poffenbarger

and Tom Manley met for breakfast at Montclair Family Restaurant, and they then went to the National Museum of the Marine Corps for a tour. (Doug is a museum docent and gives tours on the weekends.) They rendezvoused with Meade Spotts and his family. Doug gave them a three-hour tour – of Leatherneck Gallery, Making Marines, World War II and the Medal of Honor Wall. All were all polite and allowed Doug to ramble on about the beloved Marine Corps. Semper fi, Doug! Brian Tollie says, “It was a great tour of a great museum. Everyone should see it.” Brian also had the opportunity to have dinner with J.K. Hudgins and his wife, Debbie, and Vicki Higginbotham on a recent visit to San Diego. J.K. told of his recent visit to Lake Havasu, AZ, where he was able to perfect his diving skills. Meade Spotts says of the tour picture, “We’re the guys in the front in the civvies, as opposed to the young Marines in uniform, though some confusion on your part is understood, due to our incredible physique and modesty.” And thanks to Doug; “Rarely do I get repeated thanks from my kids. We stayed there until about 3 p.m. Something for everyone; nothing (left) for my wallet once we cleared the gift shop. The ‘War Department’ particularly enjoyed the private tour and the background that’s left off the official narrative – she’s now trying to get our politically correct kid’s school to swap out a visit to some European art display in D.C. with the Marine Museum. I pity the school administrators.” Finally Meade asks for all to come visit if/when you’re ever in Richmond. “We have extra room and usually only get Albro.” Harlan Niehaus chimes in with, “Well, we’re all a bunch of old farts.” News flash

Class of 1979: The Zech family celebrated second son Micah’s graduation from Air Force boot camp at Lackland Air Force Base (AFB), San Antonio, Texas. From left: Heidi, Russell, Roland ’13, Roxanne and Micah. Micah is now stationed at Sheppard AFB in Wichita Falls, Texas, attending Aircraft Equipment Apprentice tech school.


CLASS NOTES there for all your BRs, I am sure! Harlan is dealing with the day-to-day grind at work and filling his weekend time painting the exterior of his house. He kind of put it off a few years. “On the positive side, it’s been five years and no recurrence of the cancer I was treated for. Guess I had better not complain about the house.” Great, great news BR! John Colonna writes in from Norfolk, “Like all of us, I was deeply saddened by Frankie’s [Lumpkin] passing. I was able to attend the viewing but not the funeral. The tremendous turn out for his viewing the night before was a testament to just how many lives he touched. As Mac’s comments echo, everyone who ever met Frankie was his friend. It was nice to see so many from ’79 again. Teresa and I continue to love living in Norfolk. After 7+ years, I finally got around to having a dock built. We’ve had a great summer, boating and pulling the kids around on a tube. I’ve been told that having a house on the water without a dock is like having a great computer but with no Internet connection. I’m inclined to agree.” Kirk Latsha is ALIVE! He writes, “Heading back to the classroom this week to start my eighth year of teaching and coaching at Southern High School in Louisville, KY (working on my second retirement).” I played golf last week in Pennsylvania with brother, Kimber, VMI ’77 and member of the VMI Board of Visitors. Can’t say who won the golf match!” Great to hear from you, Kirk, and super news about Kimber! Word from Henry Rogers: “Who could resist a plea like that for notes?” Henry has one more year left paying for college, and then

he and Kathy will be financially independent. “After four kids and eight years, it will be nice to actually use my money for things other than college. After May, we’ll be closing Rogers National Bank for good,” he says. In June, Henry got his black belt in Tae Kwon Do, finally fulfilling a childhood dream. The test lasted over four hours and Henry thought it was going to be the end of him, but he survived. “You know it’s bad when your breathing resembles Darth Vader.” Henry is excited to be able to do more teaching now. In October he’ll be leading a group back to Budapest, Hungary, for mission work, so he is busy getting ready for that. John Kailey’s son, who was a 1/4-inch shorter, is now 1 and one half inches taller than John and weighs 210 pounds at age 14. Needless to say, he is a natural for football. He played baseball last year, also, for the first time in a number of years and did well. The little one plays baseball, too. John says, “I daresay that I probably have the youngest son in the class – 7.” Hmmmm … Jay Thompson “may” have you beat, John! Any others gonna challenge? John is still on active duty. Allegedly, he will have an OCONUS (outside the Continental United States) tour, beginning mid September. He has had several false starts, so we will see what happens. That being the case, he says it sure would be nice to Skype some BRs! Frankie Lumpkin’s Memorial Golf Tournament in June, the “UF Open”, was a well attended blast! Great fun with the family and friends and a fine turn out from VMI and the class of ’79. Several BRs, including Tom Herbert, Massie Meredith, Mac Curtis,

Class of 1979: At the National Museum of the Marine Corps were, from left, kneeling, Randy Hawkins and Doug Doerr. Standing: Mike Staso, Meade Spotts, Jeff Goldhardt, Brian Tollie and John Poffenbarger. Doug serves as docent and provided the fun, fact-filled, three-hour, personal tour. A grand time was had by all.


Mike Ogden, Bill Albro, Dave Jeter, Chuck Biviano, Doug Mauck, Sam Pace, Chip Humphrey and Mark Byrd – I KNOW I have forgotten a few (sorry, guys – getting old and I did not take notes!) were in attendance! I know Patty and family appreciated the support. Thought is for ’79 to make next year’s tournament an informal reunion. Get a block of rooms, play golf if you want and all get together for that night for dinner and fun. John Arthur, Jim Harrington, Pete Underwood and Asa Page recently ran into each other at a Western Branch VMI Alumni Association outdoor BBQ held in Portsmouth, VA. The event is held each year to welcome new cadets matriculating to VMI from the Hampton Roads area. Little did they realize it, but Jim and Asa live just a couple of miles from each other in Virginia Beach. Asa’s youngest was about to start the Ratline and was getting plenty of good advice from the BRs. Speaking of Asa, he had his 30-plus year retirement ceremony from the Navy in June. A wonderful and well done affair attended by myself, Pete Underwood, John Arthur and Mike Thomas. That’s it for this go ‘round. All well here with Renee on the Virginia Eastern Shore. She keeps busy with the Northampton County Chamber of Commerce, and I am breaking in a few new admirals at work. I would like to put a plug in for Facebook. We have over 90 BRs signed up and logged in to the VMI Class of 1979 group. We even have a few BRs from Iran on Facebook. Just another suggested way to keep in touch and for your “oh so wonderful” class agent to get word to you. Stay well, and keep in touch.

Class of 1979: John Arthur, Jim Harrington, Asa Page and Pete Underwood recently ran into each other at a western branch VMI Alumni Association outdoor BBQ held in Portsmouth, Virginia. The event is held each year to welcome new cadets matriculating to VMI from the Hampton Roads area.




John Gibney Jr.

Hello, Brother Rats: These notes cover the period May 16, 2010, through Aug. 15, 2010. The period began with Col. Rob Gearhart’s retirement from the Marine Corps after 30 years on active duty. Rob invited our former Marine Corps BRs to attend his change of command ceremony. Both Steve Letts and Tom Gelles sent regrets and best wishes, but Steve Chace and Dan Conn were able to make it to Quantico for the ceremony. Also in attendance were Andy Ludlum and John Diggs. A group photo should appear with these notes. All the best in retirement, Rob. The VMI Web site posted a list of faculty members who received awards for the prior academic year. Among the recipients was Tim Hodges, a professor of mechanical engineering. Tim was awarded the Charles C. Luck Jr. ’20 endowed Institute Professorship in Engineering. The Institute Professor Program recognizes members of the VMI faculty for outstanding achievements in teaching, curriculum and course development, scholarly engagement, professional citizenship, and cadet development and is the highest honor a VMI professor can receive. Congratulations, Tim. Elliott Wolffe called and said that he and Amy are now settled in their home in New Orleans following their wedding last November. Elliott expected to visit New Jersey, and we discussed a possible dinner together in the City. Jack Keane sent an e-mail requesting contact

information for Don Briggs. Did you guys ever connect? May closed with a conversation with Chal Glenn. Chal reported that Steve McKenna ’79 remarried. He also said that he and Robin were looking forward to their time as empty nesters after their son, Josh, matriculates to Clemson. June began with an e-mail from Bill Kelly. Bill was unable to attend the reunion due to a job conflict. Bill is still in the military working full-time at the Barnes Air National Guard in Westfield, MA. He plans to retire next year. Bill also sent two photos, one taken during his deployment to Afghanistan in 2009 and one taken at his daughter’s college graduation in May. One photo appears below; the other is in the OEF/OIF section of this Review. In 2009 Jim O’Connor wrote and produced a play that ran off-Broadway. Jim did the same this year, and his play, “Literary Disruption,” ran as part of the Midtown International Theatre Festival. Jim sent an e-mail inviting our NYCarea BRs to attend. Scott Sayre sent an e-mail in response to a birthday card, noting that it was a gorgeous day in Lexington to play a round of golf and have a cigar – so he did. Col. Larry Avery, currently deployed in Afghanistan, is scheduled to return in September and retire from the Air Force in October. Larry is the director of the Office of Security Cooperation and is stationed in Kabul. A photo should appear in the OEF/OIF section. Pat McCarthy sent a video clip of his 16th anniversary trip to Grand Cayman. He also wrote that it was great seeing so many BRs at our reunion. Larry Ciacci sent an e-mail saying that he had to miss the reunion due to being on assignment for FEMA. Larry lives in Connecticut and is

Class of 1980: Bill Kelly with his wife, Patty, and their six daughters – Shannon, Bretta, Erin, Meara, Noreen and Dana – at Erin’s college graduation in May 2010.

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headquartered in Manhattan. He also wrote that he’d try to attend Jim’s play. In a subsequent message, Larry wrote that his two oldest children graduated from college this summer and that his youngest is on a traveling baseball team. Bert Schneider sent an e-mail with an attached article about a summer research program that he started at Raytheon Missile Systems in Arizona. The program hosts cadets from the U.S. Armed Forces academies. Bert would like the program to include VMI cadets. More on the program can be found in the Alumni News section of this Review. Jonathan Ives sent an electronic invitation to attend his promotion ceremony in Seattle, WA. Jonathan was promoted to brigadier general in the U.S. Army Reserve on July 10th. Congratulations, Jonathan! June closed with an e-mail from Walt Wood containing a YouTube video that explains the work he and Mary Lynne do in Peru. I will forward the link upon request. July began with a visit to our house in the Poconos by Steve and Cathy Andrews and their daughter, Caroline. They stopped on their way from their home in Connecticut to Reading, PA, where their oldest daughter, Virginia, was performing with an orchestra that was next traveling to Europe for two weeks of concerts. Virginia will attend VCU in the fall. Tom Gelles sent an e-mail with a link to a news story reporting that the Southern Inn Restaurant in Lexington was destroyed by fire. The VMI Keydet Club sent via e-mail an invitation to the 10th Anniversary Pup Cup Golf Outing to be held in September in connection with the William & Mary football game. The outing supports the Jeff Morgan scholarship. Jody is scheduled to attend.

Class of 1980: Attending Rob Gearhart’s retirement ceremony in May 2010 were, from left, John Diggs, Gearhart, Andy Ludlum, Steve Chace and Dan Conn.


CLASS NOTES Patti and I attended the off-Broadway play written and produced by Jim O’Connor with Matthew and Tonya Keys. We visited briefly with Jim after the show. July closed with an e-mail from Walt Wood. The subject line read, “A note to my married classmates or those about to get married.” Attached was an article that I’ll forward upon request. August began with an invitation to attend a pool party in Long Island at the home of Phil and Kathy Munisteri. In addition to me and Patti, also attending were Pat and Beth Griffin and Matthew and Tanya Keys. Phil promised to send the photos he took of each of the VMI wives riding his noodle in the pool. Maybe he will send them for inclusion in the next set of notes. At the submission deadline, I spoke with Chris Dombalis. Chris is working in a Newark, NJ, port facility, managing a commercial shipping business. He reports that Jen and the girls are doing well. This was followed by a call with Gary Levenson who returned to Lexington as VMI’s deputy commandant. Thanks to Dave Hageman, Frank Leech and Tuck Masker for the e-mail messages containing jokes and commentary on current events. Finally, Dave Hageman responded to a message by confirming that he and Dianna were married in July. Jodi Weatherwax was one of several VMI alums in attendance. Dave promised to send pictures. Typically, many of our BRs attend VMI football games in the fall, either in Lexington or at away games. I look forward to hearing from and possibly seeing many of you at one or more of the games. Thanks for your continuing support.


Gerald Manley

Brother Rats and Families, I hope that this edition of the Review finds you all happy, healthy, and well. Once again the time for Class Notes crept up on me and I am finalizing our notes on 16 August 2010 when it hit me that tomorrow, 17 August, will be a “mere” 33 years since we matriculated and became the “VMI Mass of 78+3.” This is when we first started to forge the Brother Rat Bonds while wearing moron dyke with our shaved heads, chins in, and shoulders back. This was when our journey as a class began and joint memories were created. Before I move to our regular updates, please allow me to start with, once again, sharing our


deepest sympathies with Jim Migliarese and his beloved family. Jim’s brother, Ted, passed away on 30 May 2010 after a brief illness. Ted was a tremendous brother, husband, father, grandfather and friend to so many. For Jim and your entire family, our hearts and deepest condolences remain with you, BR. May God continue to bless you and yours. Here are our most recent updates: Jeff Adler sent me a note back in late May sharing that he and his gracious wife, Christie, hosted a gathering for their son, Daniel, and seven other young men and women who were all accepted to VMI for the Class of 2014 … I mean Class of ’81 + 33 … from Loudoun County, Virginia. Jeff and Christie had the parents of the future Keydets attend, as well, so they could learn more about what these prospective cadets were about to embark on this fall. To facilitate this informational gathering, they were fortunate to have Leonard Weschler ’10, John Freeman ’13 and his parents, Bob and Laura Freeman, present to educate the parents and the “future Rats” about the VMI experience. Jeff shared, with a tear in his eye, that nobody wanted to hear much about the “old Corps” but were excited to learn about the “new Corps.” (Many thanks to you, Jeff and Christie, for supporting these new cadets and their families in such a meaningful way.) Doug Blowe also shared inputs back in May but I had just missed being able to include in last write up. Doug has gone back to school again, working on a second master’s degree. He is pursuing a degree in psychology: Cultural Diversity. Doug’s oldest, Galen, is still a VMI hopeful. Galen is excelling in body building and weight lifting. Galen is benching well over 300 pounds (a tremendous accomplishment in weightlifting, but not so impressive, when one realizes that BR Grover “Endomorph” Outland can ingest double that weight in crabs at a single sitting…but I digress). Shortly after our last Notes were submitted, a group of us met at IHOP in Chantilly for a great breakfast on Memorial Day. It was great seeing Jeff Adler, Glenn Alexander, Grover “Endo” Outland, Ken “Piggy” Herbert, George Depaoli, Gene Loving, Joe Provenzano and Pieter Nauta. Seems like we spent hours catching up. My daughter swung by to see “Uncle Grover” and to take a group picture, which I hope comes out well in this edition. Everyone looked great and was in good spirits! We need to gather like that more often! While I am pinging on my 4-year roomie, Grover Outland, let me share some updates he passed my way. Grover called me just as these notes were being prepared to share that he was on his way to pick up his daughter, Emily (who, by the way, is an incredible artist), from Nature

Camp in Rockbridge County. Turns out that Scott Marsh’s youngest son, Ben, was also attending the same camp and part of the same group of 70 +/- Fifth and Sixth graders. Grover and Scott were to meet up with the kids before they headed their respective ways. Sincere accolades to Scott as he has been involved in supporting this camp in many ways over the years to include being a counselor and assistant camp director; a very noble and fulfilling commitment, Scott. Grover also shared that he ran into Ed Lawless at a General George C. Marshall VMI National Security Group function at the Army Navy Club this summer. Ed has had a very distinguished government career and Grove shared that he is doing well. What update from Grover would be complete without the mention of a meal! Grover, Melissa, and Emily Outland met up at Cantler’s Maryland Blue Crab House in the Annapolis area for a crab fest with Mike and Sherrye Shupp and Dave Openshaw. By all accounts, it was a great evening. If anyone can ever make it to Cantler’s with Grover, you will truly enjoy the food and the Outland hospitality! I had the pleasure of running into Mike “Psycho” McLeod this year in the DC area. Psycho was setting up his model displays for the Navy Museum’s Cold War Gallery. Photo constraints in the Review do not allow me to share all of the pictures of Psycho’s handiwork, but I have to say it is nothing short of impressive! I will post the pictures I have on our VMI ’81 Facebook site. Mike has done some very impressive modeling work for the Navy and he is currently working on a private contract to build of 8 models for former SECNAV Mr. John Lehman. Psycho has is incredibly skilled and detailed in his work, which, as Mike says that is “What I live for!!!” Mike has been emailing the Honorable John Lehman back and forth to iron out details and specifics for each of the projects. In addition to his modeling, Psycho continues to enjoy his jumping. He just purchased a wing suit and describes it as a “scream!” With that outfit, it takes him about three minutes to get down from 15,000 feet. Unbelievable! Hank Lee chimed in to share great news about Bruce Gottwald being appointed to by Governor McDonnell to the VMI Board of Visitors. To steal some of Hank’s words, Bruce is a great pick as he has been a loyal and tireless alumnus working to help VMI in many ways. Bruce brings not only his keen business mind but even more importantly an appreciation for what cadet life is really like and what the Institute needs to do to keep turning out a great product. Just one more reason for us to be extremely proud as a Class as we now have two BRs that will have served on the Board; Dennis Johnson and Bruce - both 1st Class Privates if Hank and I recall correctly.


CLASS NOTES Hank also boasted a bit about Rick “Moose” McCue’s Cigar Socials. Last gathering in August found Hank, Moose, Ken “Catman” Morris, Vince “V” Wood from ’81 as well as Steve Oddi ’78, Anthony Moore ’78, and Jeff Roseme ’82. Catman has told Moose that the 2nd Friday of every month is now locked in perpetuity for the gathering so that all can plan to join the camaraderie. (We will work to get some of the NoVa BRs to make the road trip on a regular basis!) Hank also shared that he, like many of us, are starting the preps for our kids to go back to college. Hank’s oldest daughter, Ellie, is a rising sophomore at College of Charleston and is truly excited about getting back to school. (Thanks for the updates, Hank! Always great to hear from the one that made me the “second best looking red head in barracks!”) John “Yo” Ferry checked in and shared that he actually spent a half of day on vacation at the Jersey shore this year – that was a half of a day more than he spent last year! Ferry-Rat also shared that he was able to attend the wedding for John McKeegan’s step-daughter, Veronika. Veronika Vitkina married Mr. Nicholas Finkelman on June 27 in Garden City, NY. Both John and Maureen Ferry were guests for what they describe as a “platinum” wedding. Veronika made for a gorgeous bride in a beautiful setting. John F remarked that the reception was of such class and style that it left them wondering where the photographers from People Magazine were hiding. John and Maureen were truly honored to be the VMI representatives and had a fabulous time. “Yo Ferry” further reported that John McKeegan and his lovely wife, Larisa, were extremely happy and justly proud that day! John F also reported having dinner with Mark “Sloppy” Gonsalves and Robert “Digs” Digby in Princeton in July. Events of that night cannot yet be printed as litigation is still pending on Sloppy, but John shared that the three of them had a great time. Ray Lawson has been extremely busy. Ray is currently coming up on the half way point of his Masters in Nuclear Engineering at the University of South Carolina. Not so amazingly, Ray is holding on to a 4.0. (VERY impressive, Ray!) With great humor, Ray shared that his GPA may not remain a 4.0 by the time the next Alumni Review goes to print, so I thought I would lock it in print for the remainder of time on Ray’s behalf. Ray shared that his spring 2011 semester final exam date falls dead on the 30th Reunion Saturday. (While I think Ray will pass with flying colors, I offer that we will raise charged glasses at the 30th in his honor and for his undoubted success.) Ray’s oldest son (Ray J.) just finished a Summer Internship working at the same nuclear site as Ray. Ray J. has since

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gone back to Carolina to start his junior year in Mechanical Engineering. Ray’s youngest son (Brandon) is a high school senior. He was getting pretty bored with his school work so he dual enrolled in college and started taking classes in math and computer programming through the summer. Brandon has a 4.0 too so far and dad is justly proud. Ray’s daughter (Savannah) continues to design and sew clothes and purses and has a real talent for the craft. Savannah is extremely creative and gets lots of compliments on her handiwork. Ray’s loving wife, Gale, continues to be the glue that holds things together. (With so many in school, including Ray, they need you, Gale!) Received a great update from Ed Boylan, as well. Ed shared that he and Linda have not been able to attend past reunions due to life’s circumstances but that he truly hopes to make the next one (and we hope you do, Ed!). Ed is in the Dallas/Fort Worth area and currently a Regional Manager for a start up pharmaceutical company. Ed reports that it is a great “ground floor” opportunity and he is, thankfully, busier than he has been in a long time. Ed and Linda are enjoying their time in the Dallas/Fort Worth area and also enjoy seeing Sandy and Tom Savage on occasion. Tom, Sandy, and family came to the high school graduation party in June for Ed’s daughter, Peri. With that graduation, Linda and Ed are going to be empty nesters this year as Peri will be going to the University of Texas at Austin this school year. (Good luck to Peri, Ed. Always good to hear from you, sir!) Bart Price shared that he and wife, Patty, were finishing up chores at Maple Hill Farm before school started up again. Their eldest, Brandon Price ’07, had just deployed for his second tour to Afghanistan. Brandon’s lovely wife, Bethany, and their 16 month old daughter, Chloe, (Bart and Patty’s first grandchild!) are home for the duration of the deployment. Bart’s youngest, Ethan Price ’11, is a biology major and was heading back to the Institute for his 1st class year. His last semester will coincide with our reunion! (Great update, Bart! Special thoughts and prayers are with Brandon as he defends our freedoms.) Bill Grigg shared news that he and beautiful bride Lisa just had their 20th wedding anniversary and still enjoying Charlotte and raising their three kids. Bill also shared that Sam Woolwine’s oldest son, Trey, got married last year completing three generations of Woolwine’s marrying their high school sweethearts! Trey is currently in dental school (and I assume that means free dentures for all of Sam’s BRs in the not so distant future!). I will also put in a plug for Bill as he shared that he has a new Bojangles store opening in Hampton, VA, across from Langley Air Force Base. Bill shared that VMI Guys get a discount!

Scott Armstrong shared a great email update. He is back on Active Duty with Regular Army status. He hopes to retire in about 4 years with a very honorable and respectable total of 33 years combined AD and USAR service! (Very proud of you, too, Scott!). Scott is currently assigned to Fort Gordon, GA, after finishing a 2 year assignment at FORSCOM HQ, Fort McPherson, GA where he saw his old roommate (emphasis on the “old”), John Aulbach on a few occasions when John was TDY to USARC HQ. Scott is married and has two daughters: Sarah, 26, and Justine, 20. John boasts about his loving wife, Martine, being his best friend and support system. Scott sends his regards to the Class and hopes to catch up with us all at the 30th. (Great update, Scott, and looking forward to see you and Martine in April!) Received a quick note from the beautiful MeiLing and husband … oh, what’s his name … oh, got it … Jim Frishkorn (sorry, Jim; you are always in Mei-Ling’s shadow!). Jim and Mei-Ling are doing well. Jim had a trip to Virginia this summer to see family while Mei-Ling stayed in Florida to spend time with her father. Mei-Ling’s father, Richard “Gunny” Akuna, is a disabled Marine Corps veteran who sustained devastating injuries in Vietnam. Gunny Akuna is a true hero and I hope I have the good fortune to one day meet him and render a heartfelt salute for his service and sacrifices for God and Country. (Mei-Ling and Jim, please pass on a heartfelt “Semper Fi” to the Gunny from the Class of ’81!) John Cawthorne checked in from the Retired List. In last Review I reported on John’s retirement after 29 years. John’s last job with the Air Force was as Deputy Director, Installations and Mission Support, Headquarters Pacific Air Forces, Hickam Air Force Base, HI. What a great place to retire from! John and Lisa have moved back to NoVA, to their home in Annandale VA. John will be starting work with CH2M-Hill in October as a Senior Client Service Manager. John’s son, Dylan, starts at NC State this fall. Dylan was accepted everywhere he applied (USAFA, VMI, UVA, Clemson, VA Tech) but opted for NC State as it is his grandfather’s alma mater, that and the fact that he received a 4-yr full ride Park Scholarship! (Outstanding, Dylan!) Ann Wolven provided an update on behalf of Greg. They, like most of us, are trying to survive the sweltering head out in southwestern Indiana! Greg is keeping busy at work – where the A/C works just fine, no doubt. Greg pulled a few all nighters recently with the storms that went through their area this spring and summer. Greg is Chairman of the NRECA Multispeak Software Integration board now in addition to his responsibilities at WIN Energy REMC. Greg and Ann’s son is still pursuing a degree in biomedical electronics and internet security



Class of 1981



Photo 1: Attending the class of ’81 Memorial Day Breakfast in Chantilly, Virginia, were, as named by Class Agent Jerry Manley, from left, “Jeff Adler, Glenn Alexander, Grover (All You Can Eat) Outland, Ken (Piggy) Herbert, George (Giving Grover a Run For His Money) Depaoli, Gene Loving, Joe Provenzano, Jerry (Real Funny With The Captions) Manley and Pieter Nauta.” Photo 2: Brother Rats at Ski Bash 2010 were, from left, Billy Stamm, Jim Hart, Bob (Clinker) Moss, Bob Underwood, Dave Hinchee and Rob (Cos) Costello. Photo 3: Jeff Adler hosted a gathering for future cadets (class of ’81+33) from Loudon County, Virginia. Pictured were Jeff Adler, Cybil Shreffler, Leonard Weschler ’10, John Freeman ’13, Matt Sustek, Victor Roberts, Eric Dentler, Tom Bower, Payton Case and Daniel Adler. Also attending but not pictured: Lauren Weinberg. Photo 4: Mike McLeod testing his new wing suit over Deland Naval Air Station Museum near Daytona Beach, Florida. Photo 5: Mike McLeod with son Sean and brother Thom in front of one of Mike’s display cases at the Navy Museum, Washington, D.C., where Mike’s modeling talents and workmanship were part of a Cold War gallery.





CLASS NOTES at Vincennes University. Their daughter, Katie, finished her freshman year with a 4.0 while majoring in psychology and with a minor in Spanish. She was named to the All-Academic Honors Team of the Great Lakes Valley Conference. She plays volleyball at Division II Saint Joseph’s College in Rensselaer, IN. Ann is still teaching F2F and online classes at Lincoln Trail College in Illinois when she is not keeping Greg on the straight and narrow. Andrew Kolesar shared that he spent time in Hershey, PA, with Bernie Banas, Marty Cristo, Coach Walt Ayers (basketball coach during Rat and 3rd class years) and their respective families. Bernie is Senior VP at Hershey Corporation and was a great host for the weekend. Marty and Drew traveled from our homes in Northern and Southwestern Ohio, respectively. Everyone was doing well and lots of old stories were shared. (Thanks, Drew!) Rob “Cos” Costello shared that he had a great time at Jim Hart’s father’s (VMI 55) place on Smith Mountain Lake. Jim hosted a total of six BRs this summer: Billy Stamm, Clinker Moss, Bob “Gator” Underwood, Dave Hinchee, John Ditillo, and the Cos. It was the 31st annual event and Cos reports that Billy Stamm gets the award for most attended (Billy has been there more times that even Jim). Cos is encouraging the rest of us slackers to make time for the event next year, and I think we should take him up on that! Received a quick note from Jim Waring who was in Fort Worth, TX, this summer for a recent AUSA -Fires Symposium. Jim was able to link up with John Haithcock who is still based out in Lawton, OK. Jim and John had a good time catching up on VMI and Army Field Artillery days. Jim shares that John has not changed a bit. Brian Quisenberry shot a quick note from Iraq. Brian is doing well and is scheduled to be back in the U.S. in early September, well before this article goes to print. Godspeed, Brian! Looking forward to you being at home in the US and God bless you for your service, BR! Bruce Kitchen has been doing exceptional work for the Keydet Club. Hopefully, we are all getting his email updates. If you are not seeing them, get Bruce your email address and he will keep you posted. Contact me if you don’t have a way to reach Bruce. Thanks for your support, Bruce! Joe Provenzano chimed in and shared that the Marine Corps Base Quantico is in good hands. Joe is there and managing facility programs for the base and shared that Marc Barthello is one of MCBH’s new contactors down in Norfolk area for Department of Navy Public Private Venture Housing under Naval Facilities Engineering Command Mid-Atlantic. Marc works

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with Joey’s Housing Officer. Other VeeMee’s within the MCBQ Public Works Branch include John Dorsey ’76, Rich Reisch ’82, and Monte Loving ’90 Latest from Glenn Zaramba is that his oldest son Scott is heading off for a semester in Spain as part of his senior year at Boston University. Glenn’s younger son, Bryan, who is also at BU, plans to complete his linguistics degree a year early in order to graduate with his brother, Scott. Glenn’s wife, Charlotte, hit a bit of a speed bump with a medical procedure in early July but was recovering at last report (Hope you are 110%, Charlotte!). As for me, I have had a lot of work and travel since last Review. Was recently involved in Joint DoD Inspector General Training and made some great friends and acquaintances across all services and that training sets me up for working with Combatant Commanders and Joint Task Force IG’s, should I be so inclined. Highlight of my summer, though, was taking my daughter, Jenna, on travel with me to Japan for 10 days. I had a week’s worth of business in Yokosuka and Atsugi by day and then she and I hit restaurants and other sights by night. At the end of the trip, we took time off to hike to the summit of Mt. Fuji, which was a great father-daughter experience to share. Afterwards, we spent a couple days in Tokyo at the Joint Department of Defense hotel, the New Sanno. I took her around to see places such as the Imperial Gardens and the Meiji Shrine. It was a really great trip to share. Well, BR’s, that is about all I can come up with for this edition. I truly appreciated all the updates received. Please keep them coming! I look forward to seeing many of you in Lexington for up-and-coming football and basketball games. As always, please keep me posted on email addresses for any BRs that may not be on our distro list and for any changes you may affect to your own. Stay in good health and stay in touch! Yours in the Spirit and the Bonds of VMI – Jerry


Charles Kause

August is a lousy month. It is the worst month of the year. Nothing good happens in August. Wars begin, gardens wither, sports are in the doldrums, and it feels as if the entire country is trapped in the bosom of Mississippi or Louisiana. When you are trapped as professional parole for the military industrial complex, you are still expected to show up for work wearing wool suits and ties while being parboiled on the sidewalks waiting for yet another late shuttle

bus to take you and your satchel to the Pentagon for yet another unimportant meeting. This August was particularly lousy. I had intimations in July it was going to be rough when I got a late night phone call from Paul D’Antonio. When Brother Rats call their Class Agent late at night, it is never pleasant. It usually means having a curt discussion with an irate BR over our Beloved Alma Mater, a sin of omission or commission on my part, or bad news. Paul brought bad news. His old roommate, John Carvil III, had been ailing with a nasty form of cancer and was being transferred to hospice care in Virginia Beach. John did not want too many people to know about his condition while he struggled against it. He fought bravely and went through two courses of chemotherapy, as well as an experimental treatment. His family and circle of friends, including his VMI roommates, rallied to his side over the months of treatment. But when the Paul notified me to inform the class, he knew John’s passing was imminent. John died at home under hospice care with his family on August 4, having lost his 11-month struggle. He leaves behind his wife, Sue Ellen, and two sons, John Regan and Joe. John and Sue Ellen planned a celebration of his life for all his friends and family to come together to laugh, and mourn his death. It was held in his family’s parish, the Church of the Ascension in Virginia Beach. Several BRs, besides me, were able to attend John’s memorial service: Tim Boylan, Doug Burdett, Bill Burnette, Stu Byrd, Paul D’Antonio, Pat McClave, Tom O’Sullivan and Jim Thrasher. We all agreed that John truly deserved his VMI nickname “Cool.” No one could remember a time when he ever displayed any stress or suffered from that malady known as the “Rodent Gastric Distress.” John was one of the few BRs who marched in a parade without his shoes. He did it as a Third Classman. We never knew what he was thinking, but he was always the first to propose a block running adventure. As John aged, he matured, as well. He found work to his liking as a systems engineer for the Navy’s Space and Naval Warfare Systems Center, in Little Creek, Virginia. John specialized in position, navigation, and timing issues and presented several papers over the years to professional organizations like the IEEE. I could have sworn I saw Tim Boylan with his family at my parish in Washington, DC a few months ago. It turns out I was right. Tim told me at John’s memorial service that he takes his parents to church when he is visits them in Alexandria. Tim, however, retired from the Army and now supports Joint Forces Command while residing in Smithfield, VA. Stu Byrd looked rather distinguished with a shock of white hair and a well cut suit. Stu is an operator


CLASS NOTES at the Brunswick Steam Electric nuclear power plant outside of Wilmington, NC. When asked if Stu knew Homer Simpson, he replied, “Yeah. He’s my boss.” Doug Burdett is spending his free time as an amateur (or is it semi-pro?) comedian in the Hamton Roads area, when not beavering at his cash flow job that he says is his own marketing firm. At the reception following John’s memorial service, Doug teamed up with Tom O’Sullivan to discuss the salient issues of the day, along with the foibles of several BRs. Several belly laughs later, those two almost have me convinced to open a Facebook account. Jim Thrasher was able to make John’s memorial service because he was in the area. His son was getting a medical procedure at Eastern Virginia Medical School. I remember hearing Jim was providing overwatch on Bill Caulfield’s son at VMI, while Bill was working in Europe. I asked Jim if Caulfield the Younger performed better than his dad’s Rat Year. Jim’s eyes lit up and said, “Oh, yeah! He got a 3.2 GPA and is skinny as a rail.” Bill was neither by the end of Rat Year. I did not get a chance to chat up Pat McClave during the reception. As we parted company, though, Pat promised to drop me a line to tell me about his world. Over drinks and dinner, Bill Burnette told me about his world. We both share the lot of being government contractors in an uncertain world. But Bill also has a world of his own choosing. Bill was recently appointed joint Master of Fox Hounds (MFH) for The Caroline Hunt just north of Richmond. He joins Ben Hardaway ’40 of Midland Fox Hounds (GA) and Jack Ferguson ’68 of Princess Anne Hunt (VA) as active masters. VMI had a pack of fox hounds in the late 30’s on post with cadets and staff hunting regularly on horseback at White’s Farm. The hounds were kenneled in what we knew as the Pit (little wonder why it smelled the way it did). As a joint MFH, Bill is responsible for the organization and operation of the Hunt, ensuring the hounds are well cared for and trained, and the volunteer staff is prepared to support a hunting day. During hunting, both he and his wife, Tammy, serve as a Whipper-In to keep the hounds safe and focused on their work. Through the years North American foxhunting has evolved its own distinct flavor which is noticeably different from British foxhunting. The most obvious difference is that in North America the emphasis is on the chase rather than the kill. Because there is no rabies in the British Isles, populations of fox are extremely high and fox are considered vermin. Farmers with sheep farms want the animal numbers controlled. In America, a successful hunt ends when the fox is accounted for by entering a hole in the ground,


called an earth. Once there, hounds are rewarded with praise from their huntsman. The fox gets away and is chased another day. When hounds do not account for a fox by chasing him to an earth, the vast majority of times hounds lose the scent of the fox and that ends the hunt. On many hunts scent isn’t sufficient for hounds to run at all. They cannot run what they can’t smell. Even these slow days are fun as the scenery is always beautiful, fellow foxhunters are enjoyable and watching the hounds as they attempt to find the quarry is pleasurable. Fox populations in hunt country are exceptionally healthy due to natural selection. The season for foxhunting is from when the crops are harvested in the fall until the spring when they are planted. Since no one knows where a wild fox may take them, large areas of land are required to have a successful hunt. Bill, as MFH, is in overall command of the hunt and his word is final in the field and in the kennels. He decides when and where hounds will meet, what coverts are to be drawn, and when hounds will go home. He is responsible for hounds showing the best possible sport under existing conditions; and he is responsible for the hounds, the staff, and the Field neither damaging nor annoying the landowners who make the sport possible. He is the boss, and during his term of office there is no higher appeal. In many hunts the duties of the Master are divided among Joint Masters. The Huntsman controls the hounds, indicating to them by signals where he wishes them to draw for a fox, and he is responsible for a fox being well hunted when found. He attempts to be sure that hounds work together as a pack by encouraging the tail hounds and steadying the lead hounds, and in case of a check he must be prepared to assist hounds to recover the line by use of a cast if necessary. His technical decisions must be quickly made, and staff and Field must abide by them or utter chaos will ensue. The Whippers-In assist the huntsman in hunting the hounds. They are an extension of the huntsman, usually far out on the flanks, and are used to help assure that the hounds do the huntsman’s bidding. They act as safety valves to prevent hounds from running onto roads or land not open to hunting. Also, the Huntsman uses them as scouts to get notice of the movement of a fox. The Field consists of the mounted followers and is controlled by the Field Master who rides at the head of it. The Field Master is responsible for seeing that the Field does not interfere with hounds in their work; and he is also responsible for seeing that the Field avoids damage to the landowners. So, now that we know all about foxhunting, Bill invites us to his favorite spot outside Bowling Green, Virginia to watch

horses and dogs chase foxes into the brush. Paul D’Antonio retired from the Marines and is now working as a civilian government employee of the Air Force. He is a Regional Engagement Analyst within the A5 of the Air Staff in the Pentagon. Paul promises to take me to lunch in the Pentagon to tell me about how a Marine rotorhead finds happiness as an Air Force Planner. Speaking of Air Force planners, I just received the latest edition of the Department of Defense organization chart to adorn my cubicle at work and I noticed the hardest workingman in the Pentagon must be Major General Darren McDew. According to the org chart, Darren has four jobs: Vice Director of the Strategic Plans and Policy Directorate (J-5), Joint Staff; JCS Member to the Permanent Joint Board (Canada - US); Chairman, U. S. Delegation to the Inter-American Defense Board; and Chairman of the U. S. Section, Joint Mexican - U.S. Defense Commission. Darren must walk around with a mattress on his back, because he probably never goes home with four jobs to do. Larry Curtin was spotted on television news as a witness to the recent shooting by the Pentagon Police of a crazy man outside the Pentagon commuter entrance. What we do not know is what was Larry doing at the Pentagon and is he still there? Someone who is no longer at the Pentagon is Sean Le. Why is it I discover my BR was in Afghanistan by reading last quarter’s Alumni Review? Unlike Sean, though, there were two BRs who corrected my last epistle to you regarding BRs in Harm’s Way. Bill Jennings wrote me a note that he appreciated the mention in the Alumni Review, but he is really nowhere near as adventuresome as I made him out to be. To be precise, Bill has been to Afghanistan twice, but not twice a year. He would like to go again, but nothing scheduled at this time. Bill has been keeping in touch with Robin Godshall, who is residing in Fredericksburg, VA, and looking for work in the civil engineering field. Dr. Tom McCune, wrote a note to inform me of his most recent tour in Iraq. He was invited to come to Duhok in Kurdish Iraq by his friend, Dr. Ghazi Zabari, who is helping establish a kidney transplant program in his hometown. Tom flew up from Balad with his colleague, COL (Dr) Kozmowski, to add expertise to the subject of kidney transplants. Tom attended a dinner party in Duhok hosted by the chief of the Iraqi military, General Babacar, along with General Ray Odierno as a guest. After dinner, Tom reported he roamed the streets of Duhok without escort or body armor, because he felt so safe. Maybe it was safe because the Kurds and Iraqi terrorists were all cowering in fear behind their compounds, because they heard The Skull was lurking in their fair town.


CLASS NOTES Bob Louthan is making a big change. He has joined a firm out of Richmond called the Pelion Financial Group Virginia. Bob is the President of Pelion and is focused on merger and acquisition opportunities and capital formation for companies in the $250 million of revenue area. Bob is looking to support the intelligence and homeland security arenas; banks and financial institutions; and manufacturing, distribution, and engineering firms. Ron Mecredy has finally left his client at the National Reconnaissance Office to pursue new opportunities with his employer, Booz Allen Hamilton. Ron and I joined Booz in 1994 when we left active duty and wound up in the same gig at NRO. Ron was a Steady Eddie, while I bounced around all over the place. But Ron finally felt the need to broaden his horizons and so joined an effort with a client at the Department of Energy. While there, the BP disaster in the Gulf of Mexico occurred. He very quickly helped establish Deepwater Horizon, the official site of the Deepwater Horizon Unified Command. At this time, the site is now transitioning to Restore the is the official federal portal for the Deepwater BP oil spill response and recovery. This site provides the public with information on the response, current operations, news and updates, how to file a claim and obtain other assistance, and links to federal, state and local partners. In order to address the long-term environmental, economic, and societal impacts of the Deepwater BP oil spill, and weave together local plans and development priorities with state and federal assistance, President Obama asked Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus, a former Mississippi governor, to lead the integrated Gulf Coast Reconstruction Effort. His responsibility is to build a framework that will quickly connect local and state reconstruction plans with the resources they need to succeed in rebuilding and preserving the unique ecosystem of the Gulf, to succeed in creating sustained economic development, and to succeed in giving opportunities back to those whose livelihoods have been shattered by the spill. Now that things have calmed down in the Gulf and the website is humming, Ron is going back to the Defense Intelligence Agency to work on some esoteric IT issues. The ironic thing is DIA is the duty station Ron left the Air Force for the commercial world back in 1994. He reports the Defense Intelligence Analysis Center (DIAC) is little changed since his departure. Right before my deadline, Ron reported in that Andy Balding has now joined Booz in some unknown

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capacity, which I hope to inform you of in my next epistle. By the time you read this note, I trust the weather will have changed for the better. Mrs. Kause is doing her part to change my attitude by changing my latitude without plying me with booze. She was tired of seeing her savings disappear into the ether of Wall Street stupidity, so she reprogrammed funds to make a down payment on a river shack in Colonial Beach, VA. I suppose I shall be spending my weekends along the banks of the Potomac River, watching eagles and ospreys at play. I know nothing of fishing, boating, or crabbing, but I will give it a try. I could use any and all advice on the waterman’s life from all of our outdoorsy BRs. Drop me a line, love your family, and have your affairs in order. We know not when we shall slip the mortal coil.


Jim Outland

I hope you are reading these notes during the cooler days of autumn because it has been a very hot summer in Central Va. A great thing about summer months, however, is receiving updates from travelling BRs, so I’ll dedicate this edition to recent travels. Hugh Daughtry, wife Robin and son Zach traveled from their home in Charlotte to Charleston, SC over Memorial Day and had dinner with Col Brent Dunahoe (USMC) and wife Lisa. Hugh sent me photo proof of the meeting, with Brent having wisely denied BR Hugh’s request to appear in vintage 1980s PT gear. Those that remember may know that Brent met Lisa, a native of Isle of Palms, during the weekend of “the game” in 1982. Even though

all of you were part of the infamous Corps Trip to attend THAT game, I still feel obligated to remind the many who don’t clearly recall all the details of having been there. Regardless, it definitely seems BR Brent came out with a better outcome from that weekend than the rest of us. Hugh reports the Dunahoes are doing great and enjoying the good life at The Citadel where he is Commanding Officer of the NROTC unit. Even though the Bull Dogs’ graduation was two weeks past and Hugh called the Friday before Memorial Day, Brent picked up on the office phone on the first ring so it seems he runs a tight ship even during the off-season. Despite the short notice, all were able to get together Saturday evening to include young Daughtry who was granted a reprieve from dining on the forward six inches of his chair. Hugh reports that son Zach did receive a modified dinner version of the “Dunahoe treatment” which would have made Doc Foster proud. After a once over of the younger Daughtry’s 6’1”, 230 lbs frame and a vigorous interrogation concerning his life plans, “Dr.” Dunahoe provided the assessment that humping a heavy machine gun as a Marine was Zach’s best option. The Dunahoe’s son, also named Zach (great minds think alike?), will matriculate at The Citadel this fall and thus perpetuate the family tradition of his mother’s father and grandfather. Brent is also looking forward to retirement next year, a milestone which will cause The Citadel and the USMC to lose a valuable resource. Under BR Dunahoe’s leadership, the Citadel NROTC unit earned top honors this summer among the 757 candidates attending the 1st session of Quantico’s Officer Candidate School. Eight Citadel cadets and enlisted Marines earned OCS honors during the period including both the Honor Graduate and the Academic Honor Graduate slots – hearty proof of what the “Bull-Pukes” can accomplish with a VMI man in charge. Another BR summer

Class of 1983: In May 2010, sons of ’83 Mitchell Marcotte and Zach Daughtry prepared for a pre-prom party with their dads, Ivan Marcotte and Hugh Daughtry. Mitchell and Zach are classmates at Charlotte Christian School.


CLASS NOTES traveler was Col. Steve Amato (USAF) who fore our matriculation in August ’79 along with On the international travel circuit, John Dodge beat the Virginia heat by heading with Mary to Jeff Perkins ’84 and Chip Aker ’84. Paul also headed down to Haiti in August to direct the “Sails the wilds of Alaska. There they visited BR Trent confirms all four of Teddy Gottwald’s sons are to Save Haiti” project that he and wife Linda Boggs and family who Steve reports are doing now Eagle Scouts with Ted Jr. having completed started earlier this year. Now a global initiative, well and are great hosts in “The Land of the his just before matriculating with this year’s the donation program is designed to get used Midnight Sun.” After consuming “a little wine Rat Mass. Another ‘83 legacy starting school in sails ( “ the bigger the better but we will take and beer” and reminiscing about anything” ) as well as spinnaker VMI days they took in a fishing trip poles, lines, and anything else one on the Kenai River. As evidenced might think of to construct tents by the photo I received of our “Last and shelter for the homeless in that Frontier” Fishermen, it looks like earthquake-ravaged country. Since Steve displayed hoggish guest its launch, the Sails to Save Haiti behavior by catching the biggest program has received donations salmon. In Trent’s words, “I had a from across the US and the world. serious case of fish envy going on It is now supported by not only in that photo!” Yet another traveler many sailing corporations but also was Col. (Dr.) Marty Curry (USA) by the US Americas Cup Racing who Amato discovered adrift in Team. Through their Facebook Lexington in late June. In Steve’s page John and Linda continue to words, “He was stumbling around raise awareness about this effort Moody Hall, so I invited him to and are always in need of resources stay with us” which seems like the such as trucks, containers, or ships typical type of stray the Amatos with the ability to deliver donated Class of 1983: On May 29, 2010, Hugh Daughtry and Col. have taken in while living there. sails to Haiti. Brent Dunahoe, USMC, enjoyed dinner together in CharlesMarty was recently selected for a Jim “Jowls” Johnston checked ton, South Carolina. The Daughtry family was visiting from two year Army medical fellowship in from VA Beach to report on the Charlotte to attend their son’s basketball tournament. at Johns Hopkins University where international move of BR Tony he will further his Ear, Nose and Thompson. Tony is with Merrill Throat skills. August was BR Jack Manley’s son, Miles, who Lynch in Europe and recently transferred from Another recent Institute visitor was Borden travelled from Texas to start his junior year of heading up Banking Services for their bank in Ray whose 12 year old daughter Mary Claire high school at Massanutten Military Academy. Geneva to work in Merrill’s London office. competed in May at the Virginia Horse cen- Anne and Miles both decided MMA would be Jim also let me know that Dave Haskins is ter, formerly known during our cadetship as a better track for him in achieving his goal of now President of David H Elliot Company “White’s Farm.” Lexington treated the Ray’s attending VMI and she plans to be back in VA in in Lexington, KY. On the home front, Jowls’ well with Mary Claire winning two trophies for early October to attend one of her son’s football daughter, Kate, has graduated from George her medium green and grand green pony hunter games. Should any of you be in the area or are Mason and now works for the Northern Virginia championships, all of which sounds like quite MMA grads, I’m sure Miles will appreciate Mental Health Institute, which should provide a lot of Borden Ray green to me. your encouragement. suitable quarters for any of our BRs in NoVa. Also travelling this season was Younger daughter, Madeline majors Paul McCusker and family. The in Bio Chemistry and is a rising McCuskers journeyed to Las Vejunior at VPI - which Jim says was gas to see daughter Kate play in kind of tough to deal with at first. a soccer tournament and followed Having a Bio-Chem major and a up with a quick trip to the Grand Mental Health professional among Canyon and Hoover Dam. While Jowls’ spawn, makes me just marvel visiting the dam they observed at the good fortune of those young film crews with big orange rolls ladies. of fabric creating what would Travel writer BR Lynn Selden become one of AT&T’s “Rethink checked in recently concerning Possible” TV advertisements. News his meeting with bestselling author like that really doesn’t require Pat Conroy. As you may know, Mr. me to “rethink possible” ways to Conroy is a Citadel graduate and put in a pitch for my employer the author of such works as The of 20 years – the update just kind Great Santini, The Prince of Tides of sells for itself, so thanks BR! and Lords of Discipline. Our BR Paul also trekked back to Virginia and Mr. Conroy had a nice lunch from Illinois in August to visit son and discussion of book ideas which Class of 1983: In June 2010, Col. Steve Amato, USAF, Jack attending the National Scout I hope to learn more about in the left, enjoyed salmon fishing in Alaska’s Kenai River Jamboree at Ft. A.P. Hill. This future. In the meantime, be sure with Trent Boggs. prompted him to recall earning his to see Lynn and Cele’s Web site own Eagle Scout just one week beat which includes



CLASS NOTES private high school in Powhatan where my their recent kayak adventure in Alaska. Barry Coceano youngest son Mason (17) attends. At one of the Two other less exotic travels this season from meets I ran into Kemper Wharton and since yours truly: First, my boys and I left the warmth swim meets last forever, we had a good chance of The Southside to “cross over the river and rest to catch up. Mason is the true Renaissance man; under the shade of the trees,” those trees being at he plays basketball and soccer on his varsity the beautiful home of Meade and Cheryl Spotts teams, played the harmonica in the school talent ’79 during the VMI Club of Richmond Summer show and has a part in the high school’s upcomPicnic along the banks of the James. As always, a Hopefully these notes find all doing well! ing production of Grease. As you may know, great time was had by all with an added drought- The notes are a little short this time around due my oldest son Kyle played football for UNC year bonus of no cars left behind in Meade’s to the small number of inputs. Remember, few (VMI was his 2nd choice). I was attending one infamous “Field of Lost Vehicles.” During the inputs equals a small output, so, please provide of his games which is the reason I was AWOL picnic I enjoyed speaking with a number of men me with your updates. It only takes a few from the 25th reunion. As luck would have it he from different classes, but the attendance from minutes and you can send them to my e-mail had a successful career and was invited to the ‘83 seemed light with the notable exception of address … it’s that easy. Please help a (Class NFL combine in Indianapolis in February and Warren Groseclose, his radiant fiancée, and the Agent) Brother Rat … yes, that is a plea. he must have done well enough because even lovely Vicki Johnston. Vicki was covering for Now, to the notes. I received the following though he wasn’t drafted, he got offers from BR Ray Johnston who, in her words, “had an update from Eric Jolly. “I hope this email finds 8 NFL teams to sign an undrafted free agent appointment with his recliner.” Kudos to you, you well. I hate that you calling me out is the contract. He decided to sign with the Pittsburgh Vicki, for “carrying the water” (or was that the only reason I am checking in but things have Steelers and recently attended the three-day beer?) and showing the flag on his behalf. M- been kind of hectic around the Jolly House this mini-camp. We have high hopes he remains Ray – feel free to send your emissary again to year. Joan has ventured back into the realm of with the team and is able to make the active cover for you at anytime (she is better looking coaching competitive swimming at the local roster at the end of the summer. than you, anyway). I hope this contact will put me My second travel across the mighty lower down on your “Hit List.” James took Jodi and me to the Keydet Eric, thanks for the great info. Yes, Club Dinner Dance and Auction at you’re off the “Hit List” but please The Jefferson. BRs attending and keep us all posted on Kyle. As a supporting our Keydets included die-hard Steelers fan, I hope I get Bunny Hewitt, Trey Adams, and Cal to see Kyle wearing my beloved and Jeannie Murray. Cal’s efforts black and yellow this fall. Just to rally 83s support for the Keydet getting an offer and chance to play Club and VMI Athletics in general in the NFL is a great accomplishare especially noteworthy. He best ment! captured the gist of what we are up I also received an update from against with the following: “There is Anthony “Gus” Agostinelli. so much occurring in college athletics today, a place like VMI must be Class of 1984: Chris Parks received the first place trophy “Since you asked nicely I guess I successful on the athletic fields to at the Guantanamo Bay Yacht Club’s regatta in Guan- will drop you a line. There is nothtanamo Bay, Cuba. ing new here on the home front. demonstrate to all that a zero tolerI am still employed in the airline ance honor system, duty, and doing business (that is always good news the right things on and off the field in this line of work). Roxane and can produce a successful Division Mia are great. Mia is 9 now and is I athletic program. As much as we a great young lady. Roxane is very might shake our heads at how athletbusy in her real estate business, so ics dominates the college scene, it is a much so that I renewed my license fact of life.” Having started these notes to help her (just what I need, two with BR Daughtry leaving Charlotte, jobs). We are still in Pittsburgh, it is only fitting that we end them back looking for another Stanly Cup home in the “Hornet’s Nest” with Bill to go with our six Lombardi Cornett. Bill may not have actually Trophies. I am still within walking gone anywhere this summer but he did distance of all of my family and send me much-appreciated encourageRoxane’s sister lives down the ment, courtesy of Robert E. Lee: “Do street. There is nothing better than your duty in all things, you cannot do being around family.” Gus, thanks more, you should never wish to do for helping out a fellow paesan less.” Translated into today’s vernacuwith the update. I was sorry to see lar, I read that as: “Git-R-Done.” So do your hockey team fail to get out of your duty BRs whatever it is, wherever Class of 1984: At the 2010 VMI Keydet Club Leadership the first round but glad to hear you it may be, and I hope you always end Outing Golf Tournament in Lexington, Virginia, were, and your family are doing great in your travels, as they say in baseball, from left, Bobby Chapman, John Munno, Greg Cavallaro and Barry Coceano. the Steel City. “safe at home.” Go Keydets!


2010-Issue 4


CLASS NOTES Since I was aware that Gus still lived in his hometown (Pittsburgh), after receiving Eric Jolly’s e-mail we were able to get Eric and Gus in contact with each other. Gus, who is also a die-hard Steelers fan will be able to have Kyle Jolly over to the Agostinelli household for meal or two when Kyle breaks camp with the Pittsburgh Steelers this fall. Gus…don’t forget how big Kyle is (Offensive Lineman). You better have plenty of hamburgers, hot dogs, steak, potatoes, etc. Mike Melton forwarded me a wonderful article from the Richmond newspaper about our very own Frank Kollmansperger. The company that Frank purchased seven years ago – Entry Guard Systems – maintains parking control systems that allow parking lot owners to control vehicle entry and exit. Frank is also trying to help the parking lot owners save on electricity (lighting) expenses with a new state of the art system that allows lighting to be powered on/off by sensing vehicle and human motion instead of having the lights remain on at all times, even when there are no vehicles coming/ going or people in the parking lot. Frank, what a great idea; I wish you success in this venture. Chris Parks sent me the following great update. “I hope that you had a great 4th of July this year. I just wanted to drop you a message to give you an update. I have been very busy with my work in the U.S. Marshals Service. Lots of travel over the past year. I spent a couple of months down at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba late last year and early this year looking at how we were going to transition the detainees from the military into federal custody. While I was down there I was able to participate in the Guantanamo Bay Yacht Club’s regatta. I sailed with another civilian (from VA Tech) and we took first place! It was lots of fun. Every year we get a group of law enforcement types together to put on an information seminar at the Institute to give the cadets an idea of the different types of jobs in law enforcement. It first started about 12 years ago when Scott Fairburn ‘82 (ATF) and I got together with two other agents and met with cadets one evening for the informal seminar. We now have alumni from state, local and federal agencies represented at these functions. I will be in New York this fall for the United Nations General Assembly. The U.S. Marshals and the ATF assist the State Department with the protection details for the visiting delegations. This year I will be in charge of the USMS contingent. I will act as the liaison between our headquarters and the State Department and make the assignments for the USMS deputies assigned to the mission. It should be lots fun! Well, I must run. I have been called into work. Take care and have a great summer.” Chris, thanks for the great work you are doing with the U.S. Marshals and also getting the word to


VMI cadets about opportunities to serve in Law Enforcement. Have fun in the Big Apple. I see Jim Dixon often, and have the opportunity at least every couple months to have dinner with Jim, Carlos Zamora and their families. Jim and Carlos both spend quite a bit of time earning frequent flyer miles. Just this past winter, Jim accepted a position with Fulbright Law Firm as the firm-wide executive director and is spending time shuttling between Houston, Washington, D.C., and the firm’s other offices throughout the US. Carlos is the head of British Telcom’s South American Division and spends a great deal of time sleeping on the red-eyes while shuttling between Washington, D.C., and numerous countries in South America. In June, I played golf with John Munno, Bobby Chapman and Skip Goodwillie ’83 at the annual VMI Keydet Club leadership outing. Even though we didn’t win the tournament (Bobby and I both had rough days and were not key contributors to the team that day), we still had a great time. John is living in Richmond and keeping busy flying the international routes with American Airlines. Every time I talk to Johnny, he is getting back from London, Paris, Rome, etc. Tough life! Bobby is still living in Lynchburg and is president/CEO of Bank of the James Financial Group. Bobby, you and I need to get rid of the Blackberry’s so we can spend more time on the golf course. Dawn and I were able to spend a recent weekend with Greg and Marlene Cavallaro at their awesome condo and dock on Smith Mountain Lake. Always the gracious hosts, Cav and Marlene leave no stone unturned when they entertain. Greg, we had a fun time as always … thanks for hosting. On the job front, Cav continues to do amazing things for VMI athletic programs as CEO of the VMI Keydet Club. Even in the tough economic times that we experienced in 2010, the Keydet Club, under the leadership and guidance of Cav, was able to cover all promised FY10 commitments to VMI for athletic scholarships and athletic operations – no small feat by any measure. Cav, we all appreciate everything you are doing 24/7/365, not only for VMI but also for the Class of 84 – great job BR! Steve Hiller wrote me the other day. He and Sharon were heading back east to Roanoke for Sharon’s parent’s 50th Anniversary celebration. Steve was scrambling to meet a couple work deadlines and still join Sharon – albeit two days later than her arrival in Roanoke – for the Anniversary celebration. At the same time, Steve was applying a VMI recruiting pitch on the son of a family friend. Steve, sounds like more work than vacation. I hope the plan was executed as designed and you made it back to Roanoke in time. I wouldn’t want to miss that stick check … the penalty for missing the wife’s

parent’s 50th anniversary is bound to be harsher then a 10-6-30! Well, I will close out this addition of our class notes. By the time these get published hopefully we will be well on our way to a winning 2010 campaign for the VMI football team and Men/Women’s soccer teams. Additionally, the Barracks renovation projects should all be completed so it is a great time to get back and visit VMI. Your continued support affords cadets opportunities … the same opportunities we were provided during our time. Until next time, good night Chris Busse, wherever you are!


Matt Daniel

By the time you read this, many of you will have witnessed the results of Jake Spivey’s efforts over the past few months to put our 25thtogether. Our Reunion’s success was due to the hard work of Jake, Joe Irby, Meade King, J.J. Wranek and a host of other BRs that made things happen. To these and some others who shall remain un-named we owe them a debt of gratitude. Please hoist a glass in their honor! Speaking of hoisting glasses, Paul Shoemaker has been hoisting both a wine glass and running shoes while working in Paris for AREVA. Paul completed the Paris 20KM, the Paris Semi

Class of 1985: In July 2010, Paul Shoemaker participated in a Paris, France, triathlon.


CLASS NOTES handful of times since he graduated, the longest being the two months he was assigned there by the Army ROTC as a “Gold Bar Recruiter.” John notes that if you ever happen to be making a helicopter landing into VMI, then you probably will be using a descendent of the SOP written in part by our BR McConnell. After his graduation in 1988, BR McConnell went into the Army for 3 years, getting to enjoy some time in Germany with time in Southwest Asia during Desert Storm. He commenced a job with LOGICON (later bought out by Northrop Grumman) in 1992, and have been in the DeClass of 1985: James Stinebower with his two boys durpartment of Defense contracting ing a visit to VMI. world ever since. BR McConnell moved over to Electronic responsibility for all digital marketing efforts Data Systems (EDS) in 2000 – email, websites, social media and online and became a Hewlett-Packard employee when marketing. Is it just me or does that sounds like H-P bought EDS in 2008; his office is in Falls a big job for a Marine? Anyway, that little jab Church, Virginia. Clint Hubbard ought to provoke the rest of our Marine BRs to On a personal level, John and Melissa were check in and send an update. Urie, Malavet, married May 2001, and they’ve been to Russia Walpole, Rivenbark … where are you boys? a number of times to adopt their two children, BR Weede is married with an 18-year anAnna (age 7) and Michael (age 5). The neatest niversary coming up in September 2010. Rich part of that story is worth a direct quote from says they have two daughters – ages 16 and John: “Coincidently, I went on a VMI-sponWhen I wrote the notes in February, I whined 14. He closed with a great Rich Weede quote sored trip to Russia and Germany in the sumabout all the snow we had; here it is August, “Hands full with two daughters - car insurance mer of 1988, and the changes there have been and central Virginia has had 10-12 days of temis sure expensive for teenage girls.” Tell me you pretty profound. It was kind of amazing to see peratures over 100 degrees Fahrenheit. It’s hotthe switch from Communism to Capitalism in ter than a … well, I really can’t use that analogy can’t picture him standing in front of you saying that! It was great to hear from you Rich and the span of not so many years. Interesting also in a family publication like Alumni Review, but know that our Weede has not been eradicated. that a trip brought about by my time at VMI I think y’all know where I was headed. After hearing from Rich, the floodgates of went to the same places overseas that I ended In my opinion, one of the greatest gifts from news from long-lost BRs continues: reading up spending a lot of time for very different our VMI Experience is the way we can drift the update from Pete Kramer inspired a report reasons.” away from one another for a few years but from John McConnell. John filled in the blanks Thanks for a great update, John, and look when we re-connect, it’s like we never lost on his world since May 1986. BR McConnell forward to seeing you at the 25th. touch at all. Or to put it another way, most of left us after Christmas of our 2nd class year – Time for a bit of housekeeping: in the last edius haven’t changed a bit since 1986. To wit: I guess he figured he had the Ring so it was time tion, Ed Talbott’s Web site was mentioned, but got an update from one, each, Weede, RH. As I to take a sabbatical. John says he returned to the unfortunately, there was a typo in the address. read his e-mail, I swear I could hear him saying Mother I in the fall of 1986 and actually graduThe correct address is: the words with that patented dry, wry sense of ated with the Class of 1986+2. He said he had a humor he obviously still has. (For another huaquilaet. I highly recommend you check it out great time with them although retaining his ’86 morous example, get out the Bomb and re-read to see Ed’s many adventures; don’t forget his identity. One story that John enjoys relating is his first class history with his description of classmates from pharmacy school. once when he was coming back from a furlough compromising with his dad.) Rich retired from You may recall in the last edition, there was and Captain Wilcockson greeted him with a the Marine Corps in 2007 after a last tour at some discussion of a certain former battalion “Welcome Back” as though he was a returning CENTCOM and took a job at Kforce Services commander who may or may not have been alumnus. BR McConnell says he wonders what Corporation. Other than the job, BR Weede involved in a “Smokey and the Bandit” bootleg the Deputy Commandant’s thoughts were when says he’s not sure why he stayed in the Tampa, run to transport kegs of beer across state lines he (John) had to answer a special report to him FL, area with the hurricanes, oil spills and drab from Idaho to Utah. (Is that a violation of later on in the semester. economy. But he offers that the weather is awethe Volstead Act?) No official word as yet on John has made it to the five and 15 year some, except for July through October. “Father Troy” Lanier’s “family trip” to Lake reunions and hopes to continue the tradition and Powell in June. Just to jog the memories of you Kforce is a nationwide professional staffing make it to the 25th in the fall of 2011. Other and solutions firm, and Rich is the director for boys, it was to be four families and a 60-foot than reunions, he’s been back to VMI only a Kforce’s Internet Operations Department with house boat. That is just what the world needs – Marathon and the Paris Triathlon. His studly picture is included in this edition of the Alumni Review. (I’m sure this photo will spawn another “biker shorts war” with Hugh Hill – remember gents, this is a FAMILY magazine) “Shoe” was in the States in June and hooked up with old pal Jeff Hill in Annapolis. (Jeff doesn’t head that for north for just anybody!) I received a nice note from Jim Stinebower and a nice picture of himself with his son, Aiden (almost 6), and his (unnamed!) youngest don on his 3rd birthday. Thanks to all that “poked” me on Facebook on my birthday – it was very much appreciated. It’s been quiet, dull, work-filled summer for your faithful scribe. I have been able to venture out on my ’61 BMW motorcycle a couple of times after getting it running again after a 26 year sleep. It runs much better than I do at its advance age! Gotta Run! ... Eck


2010-Issue 4


CLASS NOTES a group of late 40’s “used to be’s” with a few kegs of beer on the open water. BR Lanier promised to let us know how it went – any bets that it could have turned into fisticuffs when somebody’s wife either voluntarily or involuntarily lost her top? Speaking of violating the Volstead Act, there was a You Tube video making the rounds featuring Lanier’s old roommate Jim Taggart pouring concrete at an undisclosed location building what appeared to be a rather large distillery. No surprise there as I’m sure Taggart’s ancestors have been in the whiskey-making business for years – it just seemed to be a rather ambitious project what with state police helicopters flying around all the time looking for illicit activities. Check out You Tube and “Virginia Distillery Company;” might be our last chance to see BR Taggart before he goes into the license plate making industry. Those federal boys don’t screw around; atleast that’s what Scott Wagner has always said and why he purchases camouflage netting to protect his “projects.” Hopefully, our FBI Agent BR “B.F.” Diehl is not reading this edition. Actually, the thought of B.F. going after an alcohol operation conjures up the notion of the fox guarding the hen house, doesn’t it? This news may be a bit dated but late April saw the HCA hospitals in the central Virginia area host a company-wide talent show to raise money for the American Heart Association. They raised over $8,000 but what is pertinent to our discussion here is that one of the judges was our own Dr. Cyrus Kump, M.D. or as he is known at work: “Dr. McDreamy.” Yeah, you read it correctly; that’s what they called him. And no, I couldn’t see it either; I’ve seen better looking heads on a mug of beer. As they say, if you live long enough … And remember one and all that the HCA Big Kahuna in central Virginia is our boy, Pat Farrell. Hey Boxhead, what kind of outfit are you running over there? I’m telling you boys you don’t even have to try and make this stuff up; it just comes to you. Let’s forget about Dr. McDreamy for a bit and talk about John Pitcock. I dang near had to look him up in the Bomb. Not really, but it was good to hear from him and get a brief update – although not quite as brief as the two line update from Tim Perez a few years ago. BR Perez, we want to know more … After 21 years in the Army, BR


retired in the summer of 2007 as a lieutenant colonel. Among his stops along the way was a tour at VMI ROTC during our 15th reunion, but he finished his career at Fort Knox. John settled back in his home town of Granville Ohio, and works for Defense Logistics Agency (DLA) at Defense Supply Center in Columbus, Ohio. BR says he has seen Bill a few times when Bill was up in Columbus on business travel. As for himself, John is a Weapon System Support Manager working current ops/readiness for the Mine Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) vehicle program. He says it is great work for an old soldier, as he is still connected to the fight and gets to interact with soldiers daily. The not-so-good part is that he is currently deployed to Bagram AFB in Afghanistan as the lead for a five-person surge team working MRAP Readiness and Battle Damage Repair parts issues on the ground. Actually, BR should be home by the time you read this news. John and his bride Laurie have two kids, Austin (15) and Abbey (13). Both youngsters are active in ice hockey; Austin is a goalie on their local high school team and Abbey plays on the girl’s team. BR says the he has been playing and coaching hockey for several years now as well. Both kids play Lacrosse also, and Abbey is an accomplished figure skater. Sounds as if he has enough to keep him busy, and he closed with a great quote: “Things

are pretty good; I have been very blessed in my life. I haven’t thought much about school lately, but Laurie sent me the write up from the Review and it got me thinking about times ‘back in the Old Corps.’” Thanks for checking in John although I will have to get a ruling on whether or not you are indeed free and clear from any hospitality duties at the 25th – true enough, you wrote in on your own but admittedly after your bride nudged you along. To use a favorite Dave phrase “I’m just sayin’ … ” While talking about those with hospitality duties at the 25th reunion, here is an update from Tim. (No, Keilty is not on the hook, but he met up with someone who is – read on.) Last summer, they were traveling up to Niagara Falls for a little R & R when Mrs. (Colby) suggested they make a little detour to the great city of Rochester, New York, and look up our class valedictorian. There were only two in the phone book, and BR got lucky on his first try as Sue answered the call. After a brief chat, Sue asked if Tim ever got up to Rochester. TK said she was very surprised when he told her they were about 30 minutes away! Well, she immediately called Jim and they all met for cocktails at the Estate. BR says he met Jim and Sue’s kids and they told all kinds of war stories well into the wee hours of the morning. TK says that Jim and Sue were lovely hosts and were as warm and kind as he remembered them. BR is still practicing law in Rochester and his twin boys are headed off to play college football next year. As far as the clan, they are all doing well in Fredericksburg, Virginia. Tim got remarried a year or so ago, and his new bride, Colby, leads their Charity in memory of his first wife, Kerry. Over the last 5 years, they have raised over $350,000 for the Preston Robert Tisch Brain Tumor Center at Duke. Tim says he is shameless in his efforts to fight this disease so if anyone feels so inclined they can send donations to: Team Kerry, 11204 Gray Fox Point, Spotsylvania, VA 22551. BR offered a big thank you to all who have contributed and continue to contribute with a special thanks to BR Chris who has been a major sponsor of this endeavor for the past three years. Thanks, TK, for letting us know that BR is alive and well and fully capable of hosting cocktails – we appreciated the update as well. After we heard from his pseudoneighbor Mike Castaldi in a recent


CLASS NOTES edition, Dave Brackett checked in this quarter from Harford County in Maryland. Dave and wife Jennifer have a son Luke who will turn 2 years old in August 2010, and Dave’s daughter Rachel (from a previous marriage) will turn 21 in September 2010. BR Brackett, the big stud muffin, and Jen are also expecting twins in December. Dave says he thinks he has finally figured out what is causing the babies and these two will likely be his last two. Currently BR Brackett is employed as a consulting engineer in the HVAC field near the area of Elkridge, MD. Dave says his company works mostly with healthcare, and even with the poor economy, the healthcare market still seems to spend money, and he’s been “pretty busy.” Re-read the part about expecting twins; it would seem that BR Brackett has been getting busy at home as well as at work. Dave’s former roommate Mike Chapman lives nearby in the Bel Air area, and they frequently get together to hang out. BR Chapman is married to Christina and they have 2 young ’uns, Katie and James. I recall Mike introducing me to Christina at a football game several years ago; if it is indeed the same Christina then BR Chapman did like many of his BRs; he married up. And I guess if it is not the same Christina, then BR Hubbard just BRF’ed BR Chapman and ruined any chances Mike might have had for twins. Let’s hope for the best. Thanks for the update, Dave, and best of luck with the twins. Finally, it wasn’t quite a Louis Rucker sighting but early June was time for a visit to the local Red Wing Shoe Store for a new pair of work boots – no cracks from the peanut gallery about why I would need them; I’m writing this column! Anyway, an elderly-looking, grey-haired gent takes a chair several seats down from me and starts trying on boots as well; turns out to be Al Leatherwood. BR Leatherwood left the employ of VDOT where he was Resident Engineer in Dillwyn, VA, to embark upon a new career with the Buckingham Branch Railroad Company. Al says that “life is good” both on the railroad and in rural central Virginia. And I was just kidding about the elderly-looking, grey hair remarks – just busting on him for being MIA for so long. After 10 or 15 years, I really wish we had run into one another at Hooter’s instead of a shoe store. Well, we did manage some new names this quarter – it’s great to re-connect with these men. Don’t forget the 25th will be coming in the September of 2011. We hope to have a great turnout and you’ll need to bring your checkbooks. We’ll be establishing a team to work on this event so if you’d like to volunteer, please contact me. Until next time, take care Brother Rats.

2010-Issue 4


Ernie Edgar

Brother Rats, I hope you all enjoyed a restful summer and are enjoying the fall. As I write this for submission to the Alumni Review, the VMI fiscal year has just closed and the results are in showing that the class of ’87 remains active in our support to the Institute. On behalf of the Foundation and Keydet Club, thank you again for your generous and unwavering support to VMI. As you see from the masthead up top, Mary Ann and I have moved the Edgar clan to Tampa, Florida, where I remain the Deputy General Counsel for The PBSJ Corporation. My email address remains the same, as the move completes the transition from our company’s Alexandria office to our corporate headquarters in Tampa. Brother Rat Steve Glenn remains in our Raleigh, NC office where he runs our emergency and disaster response practice and is currently enjoying one of our executive’s remarks that he looks younger than I do. After 15 years in Alexandria, Tampa is a bit of a change, but then we found out our next door neighbor is David Dibbs ’63. We may be small, but we’re everywhere! As the last Alumni Review showed, 87’s presence remains substantial in theater. Paul Russo deployed to Bagram Air Field, Afghanistan for a 90-day tour as the Task Force Med Optometrist and came home at the end of July. While there, he linked up with Mike Evans (pictures of which are in the last Alumni Review), who was finishing a year in country as a contractor. He was also hoping to meet up with Eddie Ledford, who was also due in to Bagram for his Flight Physical. Paul is planning to coordinate another VMI vs West Point Reunion this fall. Although they didn’t meet up, I think Chip Bierman is over there now commanding the 3rd Marine Regiment. Renny Renshaw also heard that John Lightner is back in Afghanistan. Finally, Andy Kestner re-deployed there in July as a contractor. As he put it: there’s no work stateside so why not go where the work is and its interesting meeting all the troops and helping out. “I was trying to catch up with Paul Russo, but I think our planes actually passed each other over the Atlantic. I got an email from John Gillespie ’88 yesterday. He is passing through and I think I am having lunch here with him.” Over in Iraq, Gerry Tertychny is still working as an advisor, while Steve Cade deployed

to US Forces-Iraq headquarters in July. Steve pinned on colonel in February, finished three years of garrison command in Italy in June (where “everyone missed a great opportunity to visit - Kyle Oliver got the closest, but we missed linkup since I had a TDY trip back to the States at the same time”), PCSd with Rebecca and their three girls to Heidelberg, Germany the next day, and deployed to Iraq three weeks later. Steve just learned he has been selected for the latest War College list so we hope to have him back to the States soon. Back stateside, on July 9, in front of about 300 people, Vernie took command of the Memphis District, United States Army Corps of Engineers. “We had about 35 family members and friends attend, so that was awesome as well.” Right now, Vernie’s family is spread over three states. While Vernie is in Memphis, Julie and Eric (17) are staying in Virginia to allow Eric to graduate from Forest Park High School, and Jamie (21) is a senior at Kansas State University. Vernie is living in the BOQ at a nearby Naval Station where “it’s better than our rooms at the I.” I actually have double bed, A/C, basic cable and a bathroom in my room! I am finding that I won’t spend much time there - since I will be on the go a lot.” The Memphis District’s mission is primarily Civil Works with responsibility for keeping the navigation channel open on over 350 miles of the Mississippi as well as Flood Risk Reduction and Environmental Restoration. Overall, the district covers about 25,000 square miles with 600 employees and a $120 million budget. John Eubank has also “relocated.” After two years with Alliant Techsystems (ATK), John took a position as the Quality Engineer for Non-Intrusive Inspection Technology, Inc. (NIITEK) at their Charlottesville, Virginia manufacturing center. NIITEK manufactures ground penetrating radar (GPR) arrays for vehicle-mounted mine detection systems, including the US Army’s HMDS (Husky mounted detection system) currently being deployed in Iraq and Afghanistan. “Essentially I have gone from manufacturing the products that our armed forces use to kill the bad guys, to manufacturing the products that keep the bad guys from killing our soldiers.” And Charlottesville is a great place to do all that. Jay Pennington checked in from Colorado where he is the General Manager of Global Sales & Marketing for Dakota Legal Software, Inc. “Craig Walker and I stay in touch – frequently actually … weekly really. I talk to him more now than when we were roommates. I’m not sure what that says about how I was wired/


CLASS NOTES behaved during those three years, but we’ll leave that for another discussion. He’s joined my bride of 15 years, Rebecca, and me at The Masters for at LEAST five of the last seven or eight years and the one before this past year was truly the best time all of us had ever had there. He actually came out to Colorado for a week to hang out with us a few weeks ago while our two children (Rachael – 14 and James C. III; aka “Trae” who is 10) were in New England for three weeks with separate (of course) groups of their friends.” Bill McCarthy reported a recent Randy Janey sighting in Richmond. “Tom Mitchell and I got together for dinner with Randy and Carol on a brief fly-by through Richmond. Randy and Carol have lived in Antwerp, Belgium for 11 years now.” He sent along a picture, which we hope is clear enough to print (but if not, it’s on the Alumni Association website under our class). Speaking of pictures, Kevin and Jeana Price sent along some great shots from their wedding which featured Reid Garst, Doug Messner, Mike Jussila, Paul Munson and Natty Bo. One of these is featured here; the other two (where

these guys are cleaned up and with their better halves) are also on the Alumni Association website. Kevin has also been in touch with Jay Nagle, who I think is in Orlando. Not sure if this picture is printable in the Quarterly, but thought I would pass it along. Tom cut out before we could get the picture. Finally, Renny Renshaw passed on the following: “My kids had been begging for a dog for years. I finally gave in, and we selected a rescue dog. After applications, interviews, etc., the dog was delivered on Sunday. We had kicked around several names for the beast bandit, shadow, comet, etc. Those all changed when we were told he came from a shelter in Lexington, VA. To spare you the details, we bypassed Stonewall, Roo and Marshall for “JAMMER.” Can you believe that? 27 years after matriculation and that man still haunts me in my own home … ” Like I said, we may be small, but we’re everywhere. As I wind this up for another edition of the Alumni Review, please keep in touch with all the details of the things you are doing and the places you are going. I look forward to passing all that on to our classmates! ... Ernie


Drew McKone

Greetings, Brother Rats! I hope you all enjoyed your summer and are now enjoying the fall! Hopefully, by the time this is published, I will be in my new house! After four years of designing and saving and redesigning and saving some more, we are finally moving-in in late September. So, if you find yourself in the Dickerson, Maryland, area … please stop in! I had a nice visit with Sam Russell and Bob Clark at chez Clark in Richmond! While visiting with them, Mark Arboneaux called from Hawaii. Everybody is doing well, and we enjoyed getting caught-up with one another while taking advantage of Bob and Andrea’s hospitality. I had the opportunity to attend a VMI networking event in Richmond earlier this summer. While there, I ran into Rob Campbell (Capital Securities), Bryant Butler (Tridium, Inc) and Bill Nixon (Nixon IP Law, PLC). We

Class of 1987

Photos clockwise from top, left: - Col. Vernie Reichling, far right, received the district colors as he took command of Memphis District, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. - Billy McCarthy, left, with Randy Janey met for dinner in Richmond, Virginia. According to Class Agent Ernie Edgar, Tom Mitchell was there, too, but left before evidence linking him to the event could be established. - Celebrating at Kevin and Jeana Price’s wedding were, from left, Doug Messner, Gina and Kevin Price, Reid Garst, Paul Munson and Mike Jussila.



CLASS NOTES had a great time catching-up with each other and networking with other VMI grads. Great to see you guys! Bill Gregory checked in from Roanoke with the following update: I’ve been working as a Mechanical Engineer with AECOM. AECOM is based in Los Angeles with over 45,000 employees around the world. They were recently ranked #352 of the Fortune 500 and #1 design firm by ENR magazine. Several VMI grads work in the Roanoke office. I work next to Dan Lieber ’96. We often put our heads together crunching numbers to solve HVAC noise problems. Recently, I was the administrator who directed the Western Virginia Regional Jail in Salem, VA, (large 600 inmate facility) towards becoming LEED Certified earlier this year. The facility is the second detention facility in the country to become LEED certified. LEED certification nationally recognizes the facility as a ‘green’ building. Yes, a green prison. Karen and I have lived in Roanoke since ’92. Our oldest, Jessica, is going on 17 years old, has a serious boyfriend, drives and has worked as a grocery cashier this summer. Abby, 13, is the middle child and is a second degree black belt in Taekwondo where she is also an instructor. Nathan is 11 and is a senior first degree black belt and is big into scouting. Jim Florio is living in Fredericksburg, VA, with wife (Leigh), and four kids: Maria (9), Anna (7), Christopher (5) and Eva (3). He had the following update: I have been with the Secret Service for over 15 years, and I am currently the Program Manager for the Electronic Crimes Special Agent Program. As such, I coordinate all of the training and equipping of our computer crimes investigators and computer forensics agents. My office is located at our HQ building in Washington, D.C., so if anyone is ever in town have them look me up. Not much is new. I do take some interesting trips for work (we sometimes provide training internationally for foreign law enforcement agencies) and occasionally I still travel for a protective assignment. This year I have visited Hungary, Israel and Brazil. Thanks for your service to the Country Jim! While in Richmond earlier this summer, I was channel-surfing and saw a commercial featuring Brother Rat Krickovic and his wife, Happy! Great commercial and great to see Steve having such a great time with his business! After seeing the commercial, I reached out to Steve via Facebook and got the following response: “Hey Drew, sorry for taking a while to get back to you, I don’t check FB too often. Yeah, those commercials where a hoot to make ... although it wasn’t easy talking my wife into filming a commercial in our bathroom! “All is well, living in Glen Allen, VA. Married

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for 19 years to my beautiful wife, Happy. Two great boys, Tyler (12) and Travis (10), they are my pride and joy! Worked in the publishing biz for quite a while at Trader Publishing (with a few VMI folks). Work took me to LA and back to Richmond over the last 10 years. Bought a retail store in ’06 (right before the recession, great timing!) and I’ve been working my tail off ever since. No complaints, having no one to report to (other than my wife and the bank) is fantastic! Hope all is well with you, be cool!” I hope you enjoyed these updates and encourage you to add your own update! Have a great fall and a mild winter! ... Drew


Nathaniel L. Cross

What were you doing 25 years ago today? Well, OK, I might not be able to remember in three months, but today is the day after our matriculation date of Aug. 21, 1985. The cool part was that yesterday, the actual anniversary, I was able to spend it with several BRs and their families. We had the second annual NOVA ’89 picnic at Fred “Winton” Smith’s neighborhood park. In attendance, Fred and family, Bob and Tracy Bradford, Dave Clement, James Black and his crew, Pedro DeJesus and family, Harlan and Terri Carvey, Ben Dawson, and lastly Lori and me. I will start the updates with the guys from the picnic: Fred Smith is still with the Navy and stationed in DC. He recently got promoted to captain and learned that his next assignment will be commanding officer of Naval Base San Diego starting next June. I say we move the picnic to San Diego next year. Congratulations, Fred, and thanks for hosting a great party. Fred and Kara had to leave early to catch a flight for a quick 4 day weekend down to Hilton Head, but everyone had a blast. Harlan Carvey filled me in on a great trip that he and Terri had with their daughter: “Spent 10 days in Tanzania this past July on a mission trip with Compassion International. It was an amazing time in so many ways! To see how compassion helps the folks in Tanzania help themselves and each other, but also to be able to spend time watching our 16-year-old, Kylie, interact with an entirely different world. We went to spread hope, and we were told that this was one of the first Compassion trips that included service visits ... Terri and Kylie helped clean up a room and lay a concrete floor, while I took a 110Km, 2 1/2 hr ride for those two days to the border of Kenya to plant trees and help put a roof on a

building ... all without having any carpentry skills, or being able to speak fluent Swahili ... but we got it done! We also had a safari as part of the trip, and ended up getting VERY close to some lions who had apparently already eaten something much too tasty for them to even bother with us! All in all, it was really an amazing trip, to be able to reach out and help and serve people that we’d never met, nor ever would have met otherwise. The truly amazing and exciting part of the trip was actually twofold: not only did my wife get to meet the young lady that she’d been sponsoring and corresponding with for the past 5 years, but Kylie decided to sponsor a young boy that she actually got to meet! I think that by the end of the 10 days, with the differences in diet and facilities, as well as just the emotional and spiritual ups and downs, we were all ready to come back home! You mentioned my books in the last notes ... I’m working on #5 at the moment, and I’m co-authoring another one I need to get on as soon as this one goes to the printer. I also found out that #4 (which is the second edition of #2) has been translated into French and is slotted to be translated into Korean, and #2 is being (according to the publisher) translated into Chinese! The books I write are all about computer forensics ... fascinating to me, guaranteed to cure insomnia in most other folks! Not bad for an EE who wrote like an English major (according to one of the profs) but could not get my verb tenses correct enough to ever get much more than a C or a B! Last thing...if any of our BRs are interested in running the Mid-Atlantic Tough Mudder ( in October 2011, let me know. I’ve told Terri that I’d like to run it (it benefits the Wounded Warriors) and she’s told others, so now I’m stuck! Anyway, not only is this event apparently a lot of fun, and benefits a truly worthy cause, but at the finish, you’re apparently met with free beer from Dogfish Head! Need a reason, pick one!” Ben Dawson dropped by and if you haven’t seen his facebook page and the old VMI pictures you need to. Ben is living in Alexandria and working for Ricoh in sales in D.C. He has tried to stay in touch with Coleman Lawrence and Tom Jernigan. He also stays in touch with Jon Aycock ’86, his dyke, who is working as a regional manager with Cisco Systems. Dave Clement made the trip up from Norfolk. Jennifer kept three of the kids while Dave and Liam hung out with us. Dave just finished up a tour on the Ike where he was the navigator and is now working at Fleet Forces Command in Norfolk. Jennifer, thanks for letting the boys come and play.


CLASS NOTES James Black was at the party but had sent an email in earlier as an update: “I am finally back at work, after returning from an overseas deployment with my Navy Reserve unit, Maritime Expeditionary Security Detachment 823. Our primary mission was to provide point defense of the Al Basra Oil Terminal (ABOT) in Iraq, and force protection for the other US/ Coalition personnel assigned to ABOT. Additionally, we took over the training of Iraqi Marines from the British so that they could learn how to do the job on their own someday. Right before I deployed last year my middle son, Dane (7) was diagnosed with Sensory Processing Disorder and Aspergers (on the autism spectrum). My wife, Lisa, dealt with that on her own while I was away, but I am starting to learn more about his issues and how to deal with them. We moved Dane to the public school system where they are better structured to assist him in learning to deal with and overcome his disabilities. He seems to be doing much better than a year ago. My other two boys, Sam (9) and Charlie (5), are doing fine. Both are attending the private Catholic school where my wife teaches. We have been getting reacquainted. Sam is a bit easier as Charlie’s favorite parent is clearly Lisa. My daughter, Lily, is doing fabulous, other than she is now 2 years old. She is very headstrong, and gives the boys a serious run for master of the household. As I said, I am back at work, but I don’t really have a job as of yet. I was supporting the F/A-18 program office before I deployed, and they had to put someone in my position after I left. Right now I help out with little things at the office, but hope to be assigned to a program soon. I have returned to drilling with the reserve. I have about six more months as the unit commander, and then I will move onto another billet (hopefully). It’s been an exciting and challenging year. I’m hoping that the next one will be a bit tamer.” I can add to James’ note that he is now working with the unmanned aircraft program but does not see any oversees deployment in the future. Pedro and Mili DeJesus are living in South Riding, VA, with Pedro working as an electrical engineer. In the past he has had to travel to some of the “hot” spots for his firm that many of you are familiar with. His comment to me was that he no longer goes to “places where people shoot at you.” Pedro, that is some very sage advice and I hope that you stick to it. Lastly, Bob and Tracy Bradford made the drive up from Richmond with Lori and me. We had just seen the Bradfords the month before at Bob’s retirement ceremony at Ft. Lee. This was my first retirement ceremony, and I was quite impressed with the way the military came out to support Bob and the family and to thank them


for their combined sacrifices for our country. However, I was truly impressed with Bob’s farewell speech and felt that MacArthur did no better in his. Bob signed off using all of the call signs he had used during his career and it was quite emotional. It was also good catching up with his parents who are now retired and living in the Ocean City, Maryland, area. Bob starts working for Logistics Management Resources next month out of Ft. Lee as a Business Development Manager. In the last notes I wrote that we have the VMI ’89 facebook page thanks to Steve Chiles. If you haven’t logged on, I recommend that you do and catch some of the pictures that can’t make it in the Review. To start with is one John Piedmont sent in from Paul Pardew’s promotion to Colonel. In the picture are John, Paul and Wayne Jones. Congratulations also needs to go out to Wayne Jones who has made colonel and will be taking over the Paris Island Training Brigade in the summer of 2011. Wayne and Christine had to miss the picnic as it was the only time to check out the new surroundings at Paris Island and prep for the upcoming move. As of now, we have 100 BR’s signed up and 89 pictures. Coincidences, I think not! Anyway heard from Gary Bissell through the site: “I completed my Master of Education degree from Norwich University in June 2009. I’ll be completing my tour at the Pentagon (in the Army Operations Center) in June 2010 at which point I will be returning to VMI where I will be working as the assistant chief of staff for the Superintendent. Marti is the battalion commander of the 29ID STB (Special Troops Battalion) in the Virginia Army National Guard. Josh completed another season with the High school swim team (receiving his second letter) and is getting ready to start football in August. Bri is in the middle of fast pitch softball (both Marti and I are coaching) and is doing well pitching.” Thanks for the update Gary. Also heard from Bill Bersing: ” I’ve been living and working in Italy for the last 10+ years and am currently working as a Senior Program Manager for Jacobs Engineering Group. I see and talk with Bill Crone frequently in Vicenza and occasionally run into a few BRs. Bill’s doing a fantastic job as the senior general engineer (SGE) for the Navy’s Vicenza construction program.” Before we get to those deployed, how about a little comic relief. So, Marty Malloy and I are sitting on the beach a couple of weeks ago watching the sites go by. A guy walks by and Marty says, “Hey that’s Scott “Bornemann,” Nat says, “No its not and you mean Craig.” Marty “No it is,” Lori, “Find out!” Marty, “Hey Bornemann!” Well you get the idea. It was, and we got a chance for a quick chat. Turns out Craig

has been living in Knoxville but was in town to see family as he grew up in Virginia Beach. From Al Versoza: “I’m commanding a Joint Logistics Task Force comprised of Active Army, Army National Guard, reserve and Air Force units. We get the dubious honor of moving equipment from Iraq to Kuwait as part of the drawdown. The soldiers and airmen are doing a superb job and they are literally moving mountains. The enemy is still out there and we see their handiwork everyday we’re on the road. I am truly proud of this outfit and what it has accomplished since we’ve been on the ground. We just ask that you all don’t forget about the men and women in uniform who are serving this great nation in far and distant locations. The prayers always help. That’s for sure.” Don’t worry Al, you and your troops are in our thoughts and prayers, and we appreciate the tough job that you are doing. I’m not sure who posted it or brought it to our attention, but Scott Leonard was on Fox News during the Memorial Day weekend. Fox was doing a story on Memorial Day and resent causalities in Afghanistan. Scott’s Battalion had just lost a Marine and they interviewed several members of the battalion. Both Scott’s response, as well as Marines from his unit, were outstanding. I will try to get it posted on the class site so you can see it. Lastly, as I stated earlier, this is the start of our 25 years from VMI which means that in four short years we will be holding one of our biggest reunions. If you are interested in helping out please let me know in the next couple of months as we will be putting teams together soon. As the saying goes, “Many hands make light the work.”


Robert Clark

Greetings, Gentlemen, I hope the summer has treated everyone well. I’ve found that during the summer months, communication from our classmates slows down but goes up in quality, and this set of notes is no exception. I had the pleasure of catching up with Chris Whittaker at a Potomac River Chapter happy hour recently. He let me know that he had run into at least three of our BRs working out of the Pentagon in his short time there. It sounds to me like we need to have a photo from them sometime soon. Chris forwarded along an article he had published in the Army Sustainment Magazine on the techniques he used in working with Iraqi military leaders. The article


CLASS NOTES was good food for thought on adjusting one’s methods when developing new relationships in unfamiliar territory (Google “Army sustainment partnership Whittaker” if you’re interested). The techniques are probably a natural thing for sales folks, but for us computer dorks it’s a novel concept … (so you mean I can’t just force the world to see things my way?) Don Bowers sent me a great update about life in Bridgewater, VA, where he and his wife, Stacey, are raising Nate (10) and Meredith (7). Young Mr. Bowers is a sportsman and loves fishing, and Miss Bowers dances and is into horses. Don had been working at the local hospital until about two years ago, and he’s now the Controller of Harrisonburg Electric Commission. Even though they’re close to Lexington, life is keeping them busy so they only get to VMI a couple of times a year. Don’s son is already expressing favoritism for the Palms, which Don thinks might be trouble down the road. Don recently spoke with Ken Markwalter, who just took a job in Pennsylvania somewhere between Philadelphia and Allentown. He started working there ahead of his family making the move from southwestern Virginia over the summer. Don also keeps in regular touch with Tim Whitt who’s in the Phoenix area. Tim is fond of calling Don in the winter to complain that it’s cold in the shade in AZ. Charlie Early ’87, Don’s dyke, lives just a block down the street, and they have kids in

the same 5th grade class. Charlie just changed jobs and will be moving to Richmond soon. Thankfully, Mr. Early didn’t make Don do his laundry at all while he lived close by. Don was having a cookout with a nearby neighbor and friend recently, when his friend asked if by any chance he knew Greg Hatchett. Apparently the friend was a track coach for Greg in high school, and had a few good stories to share. Although Don missed the reunion, he stopped by on the Sunday following and was lucky enough to run into Mr. Hatchett to share the connection. Don was sorry for missing the reunion, but he wanted to extend his appreciation for everyone who left him phone messages and insults about living nearby and missing the weekend. Dave Kaulfers sent me an update that Mike Doczi is setting the citizen-soldier example for us all, and has stepped up to the plate to serve as a civilian employee in Afghanistan with the Army Corps of Engineers. Mike was slotted to leave in August, and his family had a farewell party to send him off in style. Participating in the festivities were our BR’s Barry Johnson, Joe Pittman and Hal Jones. Mike’s going to be over there for 13 months, and when he and I exchanged emails he was raring to go. Our guys are lucky to have you joining them sir. Already over that direction, I heard from Tom West who’s been in Afghanistan since February, working as a civil affairs officer with the 1st Marine Division. He was mobilized

Class of 1990: While on vacation, the Butlers stopped by Lexington, Virginia, during the April 2010 reunions.

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from his reserve unit, the 3rd Civil Affairs Group. There are quite a few VMI grads out there and the Institute is definitely being heard from. Mike Manning is the CO of 1st Battalion, 2nd Marines, and Todd Eckloff has recently arrived at the Division G-3 Future Operations Officer. Todd has recently completed his tour as the CO of 2nd Battalion, 5th Marines, which recently returned from a MEU deployment. And just back from the desert, our BR Paul Kucik sent me a note that he had returned over the summer from a year-long deployment to Iraq. He’s now living at West Point, NY, where he teaches in the Systems Engineering Department. Paul said that USMA cadets are very similar to VMI cadets, in that they’re very loyal to each other; enthusiastic about the future and sometimes they wait until the last minute to do assignments. He’s really enjoying the teaching gig, but feels old when he realizes some of his students have already been company commanders. Jim Hubbard dropped a note that he and the family had just moved to Chattanooga, TN. His previous employer was moving its trading operations to Houston, TX, but Jim was fortunate enough to secure a position trading energy with TVA. He said that it seems as if each move is getting him a little closer to Lexington. (South Florida to Atlanta to Tennessee) The Hubbard’s new home is on Signal Mountain, only 12 minutes off the interstate. Jim says he’d love to see anyone travelling through the area. His boys are doing great, and are keeping him busy coaching football and taking them fishing. I also received a nice update from Bob Butler and a photo of a football game last fall where he ran into a number of our BRs. Bob had come up to the game with his 2 oldest boys, and happened upon a handful of our classmates tailgating and catching up. Bob let me know that he and his wife welcomed Joshua Nehemiah into the family in June. Joshua’s three bothers and five sisters could not have been happier for the new delivery. It’s been a long time since I have communicated with Mike Roman, and I’m glad he touched base. The last time we connected might even have been back when he was at flight school in Florida right after graduation. Mike sent me a quick summary of life since then. He’s married a great lady named Heather from Pensacola, and he flew A-6E Intruders and the ES-3A Shadow in the Navy from 1990-2000. After the Navy, Mike flew for American Airlines until 2003, and anticipating a furlough he went to work for a company called HRH in their Mobile, AL, office for a couple of years (where he ran into Hunter Lyons).


CLASS NOTES some tidbits about his specific tasks. Based in replacing me as class agent, because I HRH moved him to Birmingham and the upon what I’ve read, John’s initiative, flexibility, have started school again and will be unable company was purchased by Willis, the third perseverance and devotion to duty were highly to give the class the full attention you guys largest insurance brokerage firm in the world. commended by the folks down south. Sounds deserve. A handful of BRs said that they’d be Mike’s now the senior client advocate, where interested, and I conferred with the EVP of like a VMI guy to me. he helps his clients manage risk and purchase Gents, I want to say thanks for the generosity the Alumni Association (Adam Volant ’88) insurance from the spectrum of insurers in the and several of our classmates for advice on everyone showed with our reunion fundraisworld. In what Mike says is more interesting the most appropriate selection method, as than insurance, he and Heather have a son Jake ing effort, especially in light of the current any of the volunteers would have been great economic climate. From preliminary numbers, (3) and are excitedly expecting a daughter in for the job. All other things being mid-October. They love living in equal, selecting someone who Birmingham, and want to keep was already actively involved in how great it is a secret. VMI and class activities was the At the end of last year, Mike differentiator. I’m happy to say that attended the Change of Command Rob Clark has stepped up to the for Lt. Col. Larry “Gray” Riddick plate, and he’ll have the pleasure Jr., when he assumed command of of being your new class agent. Rob the USAF’s 71st Special Operacan be reached at 612/802-7484 or tions Squadron. The 71st Special Operations Squadron (71 SOS) is Gentlemen, it has been an honor part of the 58th Special Operations to serve the class for the last seven Wing at Kirtland Air Force Base, years. Getting to maintain connecNew Mexico. It operates CV-22 tions with everyone brought me Osprey conducting special operacloser to many of you, and helped tions flying training. Gray assumes make me even more of a VMI his command following a decorated diehard. As I said at the reunion, career flying the MH-53 Pave Low there’s nothing like being in a room for the U.S. Air Force’s Special Class of 1990: Lt. Cmdr. John Hahn provided coordiwith a couple of hundred guys that Operations Forces which included nation of USCG, Federal, local and private resources in you know you can trust and depend combat operations. In attendance support of the Gulf oil spill response effort. upon. There’s not much of that in were Lt. Col. Larry Riddick Sr., the world today. United States Army, Retired, along Please keep in touch gentlemen, with his wife, Patricia; Gray’s and thanks for everyone’s support. sister, Gail, and her husband, Mark; and Gray’s I believe we surpassed our prior year total by Hunter wife, Apri,l and their three lovely daughters, almost a 50% and our giving was more than every class after 1986, with only one excepSarah (7), Sydney (5) and Savannah (2). George Petty III John Hahn left me a message one evening tion. When I get details about what is being around the time late study was ending (I think it applied to our class scholarships, I’ll share that was the first time he’s ever been up that late). I detail. Thank you for a great showing. At the reunion, I announced that I would be spoke with him the next day and it turned out he was just finishing up 40 days in the Gulf of Mex- looking for volunteers who might be interested ico helping with the oil spill there. As summer winds down, I find As he’s known during daylight myself once again waiting for the hours, LCDR Hahn was assigned to urgent sounding of Little Toot Forward Operating Branch (FOB) before starting these notes. I wonder Lafourche as Branch Director ISO if anyone on the editing staff is symDeepwater Horizon, where he was pathetic to a cry of “Hold IT.” responsible for helping coordinate If you did not receive an email the efforts of more than 1,200 perfrom me in July or August, please sonnel across numerous Federal, contact ASAP. I aim to send these local and private agencies. As part notes out in August and to provide of his duties he ran a skeleton crew updates about the reunion and out of an alternate Emergency memorial fund. The fund is off to a Operation Center (EOC) location, nice start. I don’t have numbers to conducting final inspections for share as I write, but I do know that storm condition and security of all the interest and generosity of BRs operating areas, then ordered perincreased our participation rate last sonnel and equipment mobilization year. Thank you to all who were for continuity of operations once able to give. roads were deemed clear. I pushed Class of 1990: Last year, Tim Feagans, Mike Kemp, Jeff Todd Hubbard will be deploying him for details on what was going Moushegian, Mark Dick, Greg Hatchett and Bob Butler to Afghanistan with the Virginia connected for a pre-football tailgate. on down there, and he forwarded National Guard this fall. Wendy




CLASS NOTES and his daughters are already missing him as he prepares for the deployment. Wendy wrote that Tom Heffern visited in May with his sons. A good time was had by all; Tom even did some yard work for Wendy since Todd was away for training. Hmm, Tom, would you mind bringing the boys down to Waynesboro? I have some wood to split and stack, plus a lot of weeding. Tom plans to attend the reunion and will retire from the Marines next year. I am stunned that 20 years have passed and many of you will also be retiring from the military next year.

Tom is … “always running into BRs. Billy Canedo and I stay in touch and catch a beer on the town occasionally. I run into Pat Kiely at the Quantico gym all the time and really need to get back together with the Pentagon/Crystal City lunch bunch. Hope you are doing well … when I have more time, I’ll try to catch you up on even more.” Bill McClary took command of the 123rd Brigade Support Battalion on 8 July. He says of his command: Battalion is assigned to the 4th Brigade, 1st Armored Division based out of Fort Bliss, TX - my parent headquarters is a

HBCT (Heavy Brigade Combat Team). My battalion is the largest of six battalions organized under 4-1 AD with eight companies and more than 1200 soldiers. Our mission is essentially to provide comprehensive sustainment support to the BCT in any environment across full spectrum of sustainment functions; the brigade is designed to be self sufficient. We are on glide path to re-deploy to Iraq next summer. With any fortune his way, deployment workups will not interfere with attending our reunion. Tom Austin said hello. Lana and he are

Class of 1991

Photos clockwise from top, left: - Cmdr. Scott Smith, left, in the Strait of Magellan, June 2010. Smith is the commanding officer of U.S.S. Klakring (FFG 42). - Rufus Owen with George Petty III at Petty’s house in Waynesboro, Virginia, July 2, 2010. Owen is hiking the Appalachian Trail from Georgia to Maine. - Tom Heffern, far right, and boys visited Wendy Hubbard in Suffolk, Virginia, May 2010. - George Petty III visited Steve Dudar on July 10, 2010, at Dudar’s home in Alexandria, Virginia. “Steve’s wife put on a nice sushi spread,” Class Agent Petty said. - Dap Tillery and Matt Childs in Charlotte, North Carolina, after the NRA convention, spring 2010.

2010-Issue 4


CLASS NOTES enjoying Huntsville, Alabama, and the slower pace of life outside of D.C. Paul Kubin is enjoying his studies at UC-Davis. Cueball will soon be a physician’s assistant. Paul plans to attend the wedding of Heath Wells to Jocelyn Voell in October. Scott Day sent a note saying hello and that he plans to attend the reunion. Dean Bailey sent a carrier pigeon. Dean is recovering from an IED attack earlier this year. Dean was banged up, but is recovering and everyone in the vehicle survived. Cheyenne is Dean’s newest family member. She is 6 months old and joins her big sister, Kyra, who just turned 15. Dean heard from Jeff Covey and looks forward to a good bull session at the reunion. Dean plans to bring the entire family. Chuck Story was the first to share the news about Dean’s misadventures. Chuck lives near Dean’s mother and heard from her. Chuck is also getting married. On June 26 Vicky Evans and he were married. There were to be several BRs in attendance. David Conforti sent an update from sunny SoCal. He is general manager/director of Golf at the Trump National Golf Club Los Angeles. He is married to Kristin, and they have one daughter, Gracie. “Life has been a whirlwind – Did my 7+ years with Uncle Sam in US Dept of State (lived overseas in Bolivia, Barbados), then in golf biz lived other fun spots like Florida, Mexico, Bahamas and even got to live in Lynchburg [VA] and open a track in Amherst [VA]. Been here four years now and the stories are too many to mention. A real highlight though was hosting the superintendent and chapter alumni here in June 2009 for a function that was quite an honor. In the honors category, also cool that one of my golf students for over three years is matriculating next month.” Since David lives on the left coast, I think it would be appropriate at this point to mention the Spring Reunion. As we all know, football is played in the fall. Thus, there will be no football tailgating or games during our reunion. The Alumni Agency is aware of the sadness, lament and general grousing by alumni on this matter. There will still be a parade. The classes still march into barracks for Old Yells. There are spring sports with new stadium seating: baseball, soccer, lacrosse, alumni rugby. The Agency is working with the Athletic Department to schedule games with a major rival during the reunions. Torry Brennan also recently assumed command of an Army unit this summer. “I’m a lieutenant colonel, Active duty, U.S. Army, stationed in Warren, Michigan, at the U.S. Army Tank and Automotive Command (TACOM). I just took over responsibility as the Army’s Product Manager for the Abrams tank on June


11th … My wife, Dianne, and two daughters Savannah (11) and Brooke (8) joined me at the ceremony. I’ll be responsible for the sustainment and modernization of the Abrams tank for the next three years. Hope to see you at the reunion next year.” Frank took time from his gig as managing director - equity research 
with the firm Raymond James to say howdy. He couldn’t say much more as he stays busy with his four children. I would think activity with children increases exponentially rather than following a logarithmic curve-if my two are any measure. Jim Pugel checked in to say hello and that he plans to attend the reunion. Hmm, I think I need to start an excel sheet to make an early guess at the number of BRs who plan to attend. Rob Edwards sends a hello to all. “I married “up” and Maureen and I live in Severna Park, MD. We see Chris and Chris , who also live in Severna Park, on a pretty regular basis. My liver has never had a day off with those two in town. I’m working for GlaxoSmithKline as the sales operations director for their Immunology Division. I get to work from home but travel about 50% so it’s a trade off. Maureen and I have three kids 13, 10, 7 and living the suburban dream.” Chris made the move from the left coast this summer; he is currently in Norfolk attending Top Level School at the Joint Advanced Warfighting School, Joint Forces Staff College. Chris hopes to attend some of the four home football games this fall and see some BRs. Brief messages were received from Gregg Fittz, Frank Thurston, Chris Daniels and Ricardo Layton. That rounds up the news for this edition. I know several of you will be gathering for football games this fall. Please send high-resolution .jpg pictures to my email address so we can use all five of our allotted slots for pictures in the Review. I am sad to report that although Matt Childs announced that he took a trip to Occupied Virginia with his lil’ crackers, he did not provide a picture. This means his string of appearances in the Review has now ended. You’ll have to begin anew, Matt.

Class of 1992: Lt. Col. Dan Shipley, USMC, above: has taken command of Marine Fighter Attack Squadron (VMFA) 232, the “Red Devils.” Below: Shipley receiving the colors.

Adam Gregory


Andy Tate Andy Tate

Editor’s Note: There were no class notes submitted from the class of 1992 for this issue.

Class of 1992: In attendance at the 2010 Steve Smith Memorial Golf Tournament in Augusta, Georgia, were, from left, Steve Stich (friend of the Smith family), Jim Maiocco and Doug Yeabower ’91.



Class of 1992: Mike Kirkmire completed the 2010 Ironman Boise 70.3.


Bill Cox

Another three months has flown by. The Rats are back at the I and summer is winding down. It has been a busy summer for many of our BR’s so I get right to the meat and potatoes. Eddie Antoine sent an update from Virginia Tech. He is still working as the human resources coordinator for the division of Student Affairs. He is still single but has a two-year relationship under his belt. My advice to Eddie, no rush -- 40 is the new 30 anyhow. Eddie does some recruiting for Tech, and his advice to folks looking at switching jobs is to stay put, and if you work for the government, keep it. He further stresses that benefits are key parts of packages now. As we grow a little older, I agree with Eddie completely. My first two jobs, I barely paid any attention to the benefits package. When I went to work for Target Corp, part of the attraction was an awesome benefits package to include continuing education. Eddie also blamed an $800 root canal on Coley Rice ’90 and the skillful art of dipping that Coley taught him. Sills O’Keefe sent me a very nice note from Norfolk. Sills and Ra Yoeun attended Brian Melvin’s change of command ceremony in Norfolk. Brian just took command of the Naval Engineering Support Unit stationed there. Here is the description from Sills: It was a beautiful, but windy day. The outgoing CO and the guest speaker gave nice talks. (The outgoing CO has had a very interesting career. It sounds

2010-Issue 4

like Brian has big shoes to fill.) Anyway, after the official change over, Brian got to speak. He thanked everyone (many by name) saving “my BRs” for the last. The he said, “I hope you weren’t hoping for much. All standing orders remain in effect. XO, dismiss the crew.” That was his entire speech. As Ra said, “That was the best change of command speech I’ve ever heard.” Then we had a nice lunch. We only got to talk to Brian for a little bit but had a nice talk with his dad. Ra and I also had a good time catching up. It was his third day at his new assignment which is, literally, right around the corner from my home. So we are making plans to get together soon. Thanks for the update Sills. Lincoln Swineford sent an update from Richmond. Lincoln started a new job with Zannino Engineering as the Construction Testing Manager. He shares that it is a great opportunity for him. Lincoln and Rusty Smith caught up for dinner and drinks a few weeks ago. Linc says they had a great time. Having gone out with Rusty a few times, I find that pretty believable. Lincoln plans to make some football games this fall at the Mother I. See you there Lincoln. John Harper wrote in as well. He travelled to Jacksonville Florida for Rod Turbak’s change of command ceremony. Rod is now the CO of VR-62 which is a squadron of C130T. Rod is currently stationed at NAS Jax. Also in attendance at the change of command ceremony were Jason Denham, Charles Sternberg and Dan Labyak ’94. John also shared some sad news. Craig Eubank’s mother passed away on Aug 12th. I join John in sending our thoughts

and prayers to the entire Eubank family (Brother Chris ’91 and father Jerry ’61). Hang tough, guys, our thoughts and prayers are with you. Jennifer Swoboda sent in an update on Max’s behalf. Max has been in Norfolk twice in the past few months for work and was able to catch up with Sills O’Keefe on both occasions. The Swobodas recently traveled to Richmond as well and stopped by the Mother I during their swing through Virginia. Jen wants anyone passing through the Huntsville / Redstone Arsenal area (Alabama) to give them a shout. Gerri Timmons sent in an update for John as well. John is still working for Daramic Inc. and doing a lot of travelling with plans for visits to Brazil and China in the near future. C’mon guys, send in your own update; subjecting your wives to me is not a nice thing to do. Bryan Shorter chimed in from Las Vegas where he is settling in with the Air Force. He says he loves his new job. He and his wife, Elizabeth, are expecting a little girl on September 1. They have chosen Addison Jewel as her name. Bryan hopes to get the whole family out to Vegas by mid October. His other children, Cayden, starts kindergarten this fall, and Derek is finishing up high school in Rockbridge County. Rod Turbak gets double mention in this issue as he also sent in a long note. I have included it here. “Anyway, I did want to share with you that I took command of Fleet Logistics Support Squadron 62 (VR-62), the NOMADS, on Aug 7, 2010 at NAS Jacksonville, FL. This is a Navy Reserve C-130 squadron that supports Combatant and Component Commanders

Class of 1993: From left: John Weeda, Charles Sternberg, Rod Turbak, John Harper, Jason Denham and Craig Eubank.


CLASS NOTES World-wide. It was a grand day and couldn’t have asked for stronger support from our VMI Brethren. In attendance were my roommates CDR Craig Eubank, with wife Ann and kids, Jason Denham and John Harper. In addition, both Charles Sternberg, with his wife Tricia, and Johnny Weeda flew in from NY and New Jersey. As a side note, my first tour TACCO, Lt. Dan Labyak was there also. And, as an interesting surprise, the Jacksonville Base Commanding Officer, Capt. Jeff Maclay ’86 was in attendance as well. Unfortunately, we were only able to get a picture of the class of ’93 ’93 ’93! Everyone seemed to be in good spirits and the after party was one to be reckoned with. The only down side was that it all went by way too fast. Jason is still in Madison, WI, John in Ohio and Craig in South Carolina. All families are doing well. Late breaking and unfortunate news was that Craig just lost his mother this past Thursday evening. I am not entirely aware of all the specifics, but I heard that Craig was there, as well as his brother Lt. Col. Chris Eubank ’91 and his father Col. Gerald Eubank ’61, USA (Ret). I would like to offer our condolences from the class of 1993. Anyway, I was in San Diego this past week 17-20 Aug for some work and was trolling the Gas Lamp district for some libations and cheer. Low and behold, as I’m passing the bouncer to enter “The Field,” a live music Irish pub, a run eye to eye into none other than Brad Briller. Seems he was there with a bunch of his LTJGs and LTs on a training hop down from the RAG. It was great having a beer (or so) with him and catching up. He is finishing up his flight training and then starts the command track soon to ultimately take over as XO then CO in the March time 2011. He said he was taking command of VFA-27 out of Atsugi, Japan. Great thing is that my squadron frequently does detachments and short stop runs from the same site. We are already planning our trip to Roppongi in downtown Tokyo!” Steve “Reaper” Grim wrote in from Maryland where he and Alison are getting back into routine after her extended hospitalization. He had spoken with Kevin Morris and says Kevin is getting into triathlons. Steve will start doing some overseas travel for work in the fall and plans to purchase a Harley for the spring. Sean Fisher is living in Seaford, VA and working as a senior engineer for a company that owns water and wastewater systems on a few of the military bases in the Hampton Roads area. Sean had a son on May 4th, 2010. Jackson Ryan Fisher. Mom and son are both doing well. Kelly Mueller keeps me laughing with her comments from Korea where they are living now. She has a website which is funny to read. Jennifer Howard sends word that she


and Mike are thankful for Mikey’s continued good health. Great news Jen. As far as myself, I am settling into city life. While I do miss the farm, I don’t miss all the extra work, and I am enjoying the conveniences of living in the city. I live a few miles from two BR’s. Mitch Copenhaver and Tom Kent. I talked with Kevin Morello tonight and we were amazed by the whole six degrees of separation thing. It is amazing sometimes. Kevin is living in Williamsburg and his three children are keeping him running. I am 1/3 of the way through my MBA and it seems like it will never end. Life is good and outside of lawyer and divorce stuff, I am thoroughly enjoying myself. I took my daughter to Busch Gardens for three days the other week and I am still recovering from that. I wish I had the energy of an 8-year-old. Addison starts third grade this year at James River Day School in Lynchburg. I am blessed to have such a wonderful child. To those serving, I offer my now old compliments; I can’t say it enough how much we all appreciate the sacrifices you make and have made in the past. We are all better people for knowing you. To all those serving here and abroad, thanks. I don’t know what else to say. God Bless the Armed Forces, VMI, and the Class of 1993.


Christopher L. Doyle

Long distance greetings from Afghanistan. I was reminded by Dan Price’s post on Facebook that today is the 20th anniversary of our Matriculation. We all remember the events of that day and the ones that followed. It is amazing how fast the next four years went, and the ones since graduation. I remain very proud to be a member of VMI’s class of 1994. I am proud of our accomplishments in the community, corporate offices, law firms, doctor’s offices, etc. I am especially proud of the service our class has given to our great Country. Our Brother Rat’s contributions to Operations Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom will place us among the long list of classes that tied the Institute to our nation’s conflicts. Jon Lauder completed his tour as commanding officer of Marine Corps Recruiting Station Dallas. He reported to Headquarters Marine Corps, where he is the Aide de camp to the assistant commandant of the Marine Corps. The General was just nominated to be the commandant, so Jon is waiting to see what will happen once he is confirmed.

Max Bulloch is living in Jasper, AL. He is engaged, and his five active kids keep him busy. His oldest son played varsity football as a freshman. His second son is 12 and rides in rodeos. Max’s three girls (10, 8 and 8) play softball and do some riding themselves. Max lives about an hour from Chris Coolidge and talks to him often. Tim and Mendy Bailey are expecting a baby girl in November. Tim recently returned from Afghanistan and just checked in to Marine Air Control Group-48 in Great Lakes, Illinois. Chris Tujo recently placed second in the 10k swim in the Sitka Alaska sound. The water was a balmy 52 degrees. He has been doing ultra endurance swims and some triathlons for a couple years. Chris and wife Alicia are currently living in Sisters, Oregon and working for Merrill Lynch in Bend. They have a 4-year-old daughter named Alexis. Chris recently attended an alumni social event at home of Bob McDowell ’68 in Seattle, Washington, two weeks ago. Jake and Brandi King are living in Powhatan, VA. They have three girls and a boy. Jake says he keeps his hair high and tight so he can go to the Institute one day. Jake is working for Metalspray where he has been employed since graduation in 1994. Jake says they travel to the valley regularly to see family. Dave daCosta and his wife Mallory welcomed their first child, a baby girl, on July 20th. They named her Amelia Claire. Dave is working as the program director at a day habilitation program for adults with developmental disabilities. In his spare time, Dave likes to act in the local Boston area. He recently played the lead in Sweeney Todd. Everyone please stay well and have continued success.


Rick Killmeyer

Dan Williams

By the time you read these notes, we will have had a fantastic 15-year reunion. I received a call last week from Co-class Agent Daniel Seymour Williams. He was shipping out for a 1-year tour to Afghanistan as a member of the Nebraska National Guard. He said Jodi and the kids were in good shape, and he felt good about the mission. Godspeed, Dan! I was back in “Lex Vegas” at the beginning of June for the Keydet Club Leadership outing. In attendance were BRs Jeremy Ingram, Thom


CLASS NOTES Brashears, Scott Southall, Charlie Branch and Marlin Ikenberry. I was in Richmond in June for business. I stopped at Mama J’s for lunch. For those of you who missed the notes from last month, Mama J’s is owned by BRs Lester Johnson and Jonathan Mayo. Mama J’s serves authentic soul food, and it is absolutely fantastic! The only criticism I have is that they didn’t charge me enough! I was able to spend time with Jonathan. He looks great and is obviously busy with the restaurant and his consulting business. Congratulations to Lester and Jonathan! At the networking meeting at the Richmond Country Club I ran into Chris Doss ’94 and Jamal Thomas ’96. Ray and Daphne Jaklitsch had a baby girl! Calista Ann Laurel Jaklitsch was born on July 20th. I spoke with Ray by way of email; he and Daphne are absolutely thrilled! Congratulations to the Jaklitsch family. Thom Brashears reports that he was able to attend the promotion of his rat roommate Larry Quentin Burris to lieutenant colonel. I think Larry might be the first BR promoted to O-5 in the class. Congratulations Larry we are proud to call you our Brother Rat! As for me I have been busy at work trying to learn my new job. I had the opportunity to take a week vacation at my mother-in-laws home in Avalon, NJ. I am training for my second Half Ironman Triathlon and keeping my fingers crossed to remain injury free during my train up. See you at the reunion.


Rusty McGuire

What a great time this summer has been. I have been spending a lot of time of in D.C. where I get the chance to hang out with Christian Hoff, Peter Segersten and my rat Bill Steinbach ’99. It has truly been fun catching up. I have also heard from a number of BRs. Jim Zepko made the transition this past summer from being CO of Recruiting Station Los Angeles to being a student at Marine Corps Command and Staff College. He said, “it has been a great year in school, and my family time has increased drastically.” Following graduation in June they are heading to Camp Lejeune, NC. Chris Brinkac is also in Command and Staff with Jim. They are heading back to Florida for his follow up tour after graduation. There are a total of seven VMI guys in Marine Command and Staff this year, and Jim said they are all doing very well.

2010-Issue 4

Nathan Straub and his wife, Stephanie, are heading to Naples, Italy, this summer, after three years inside the beltway. Nathan will be the assistant operations officer for NAVFAC EURAFSWA – managing Navy construction across the European AOR. He encourages any passing through Southern Italy to drop on by and stay a night. Anthony Gray and his wife, Kerri, celebrated the birth of their first child in March. Her name is Sydney Autumn Gray and she was born March 8, 2010 in Bristol, TN. Anthony says “she is a beautiful little girl and is a blessing to me and Kerri.” Anthony is now an associate veterinarian in a small animal practice in Johnson City, TN. He made the switch from equine to small animal practice a couple of years ago. He really enjoys small animal practice and was recently certified as a veterinary acupuncturist. His wife is now back at her job as a small animal emergency and critical care veterinarian after her 2-month maternity leave. They live in Bristol, TN, and have been there for almost four years now since leaving Virginia Tech in 2006. Anthony does not see many BRs in TN but one of the technicians in his practice is Tanya Wood, the wife of Jared Wood ’97. They all get together occasionally. Colin Boynton is heading out for deployment in a couple weeks to be the officer in charge of a two SH-60B detachment (HSL-44 Det 5) onboard the U.S.S. OSCAR AUSTIN (DDG-79) with the U.S.S. HARRY S TRUMAN Strike Group. He said he has “five great junior pilots, three excellent enlisted aircrewmen and a spectacular maintenance team. I’m really looking forward to taking these guys out to sea and conducting whatever operations the COCOM throws at us.” Colin’s wife, Heather, and their lil’ girls are doing well and are looking forward to spending the summer in Lex with Heather’s folks. Christopher Noe is loving Baumholder. He just got back from a Brigade gunnery at Grafenwoehr for two months, and he is glad to be home. He will deploy to Afghanistan early next year. Chris moved down to be the brigade support operations officer this summer, which he says “will be a welcome change from being the Brigade S4.” Melissa and their kids are doing well and they are getting ready to make a trip back to the Richmond area this summer. Scott Shropshire is still in Fredericksburg, VA. He is currently working for VDOT as an area construction engineer for the district. He manages multiple construction and maintenance contracts in the Northern Region of the district (Stafford, Spotsylvania, King George and Caroline Counties). His wife, Michelle, also works for VDOT. She is currently acting assistant district administrator for preliminary

engineering. They stay very busy at work and keep pace, but Scott continues to pick at her since she is a Hokie. Scott said “I remind her occasionally that since she is a designer, she is short sighted; she only has to see in two dimensions. When her plans come to me in construction – I have to build it in three dimensions. We have some fun with our jobs and our co-workers laugh at us when we have discussions on projects.” In addition to VDOT, Scott is still in the Navy Reserve. He is currently a chief petty officer and the assistant officer-in-charge, senior enlisted leader for Amphibious Construction Battalion TWO, Detachment 107 in Raleigh, North Carolina. He graduated from the Senior Enlisted Academy at Naval Station Newport Rhode Island in December 2008. Last year, he became the first Navy Reservist to obtain the qualification as Craftmaster on the Navy’s newest Logistics Over-the-Shore equipment – Improved Navy Literage System. This year he deployed to Haiti in support of Operation Unified Response. He spent 29 days, boots on ground, in Haiti. His assigned tasked was as Officer-In-Charge, Administrative Pier and Craftmaster. Each time he got underway he proudly flew the VMI colors from the mast. Prior to the battalion’s deployment to Haiti, a familiar name was assigned as executive officer, Amphibious Construction Battalion TWO, CDR Greg Vinci ’93. Scott also ran into Cmdr. Matt Ott ’92 while deployed. On his return Scott took the family on a cruise. Their girls, Emma and Macy, had a blast, and Michelle and I got pampered in the spa. Karl Renne and his family moved to Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso recently. After the melt down of the government in Guinea they were evacuated to Freetown, Sierra Leone, for several months and have since been reassigned to the Embassy in Ouagadougou. Doug Bartlett was recently promoted to VP of National Sales for Covidien’s Respiratory products division. He has scheduled a mini-reunion next week with Tinguely and Danielsen, who are also both Covidien guys. Doug said he “had a great time hanging out with Jamal Thomas on a trip back to NOVA over Christmas. He’s leaned up quite a bit with all his running, but he can still put away a mean lunch!” Corrie Brice is assigned to work Security Cooperation (Title 22, so we work under the DOS) as part of the United States Training Mission, Saudi Arabia. He is living on a Joint Compound in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. Currently he is working with the Royal Saudi Land Forces filling the Deputy G-3 for Training


CLASS NOTES billet. He has been there since January and will be there for a one-year rotation. He primarily works with the director of training (a one, soon to be two star) and his deputy (a Lt. Col.). Corrie’s family is still in Pulaski, and they do not know where the Army will send them next. Curt Bourn was making his normal commute from Jacksonville to Atlanta to start a trip with Delta, and saw Lawson Fanney on the plane. Curt said “we had a good chat while strolling from Concourse B to A; he’s doing well and sporting the Grizzly Adams look.” Curt is still in the reserves and his squadron got some new neighbors with NAS Brunswick closing down and moving to Jax. One of those is VR-62, and their XO (soon to be Skipper) is Rod Turbak ’93. Curt said “I see him in the hallways frequently, but refrain from giving old yells. He always asks me, “Why is it when I see you you’re never doing anything?” My response: I’m a reservist.” Lee Freeman is finishing up at school in D.C. and he is off next for a hardship assignment to Ft. Polk, LA. There are three other VMI grads from ’89, ’99 and ’01 Class of in his DIA School. He also sees Chris Powell all the time and he is also doing well. Mike Obadal told me that Travis George will be moving this summer from Hampton Roads due to Air Force PCS, and Chris Antonelli and his wife had a new daughter just recently. Mike and Christine are expecting their third boy in September. Bart Filipiak’s wife gave birth to their first child, Norah “Dee” Flipiak shortly after midnight on February 19th. She weighed 6lb 15oz and is doing great! Thanks ... Rusty


John Duckworth

Editor’s Note: There were no class notes submitted from the class of 1997 for this issue.


Hamel Reinmiller

Editor’s Note: There were no class notes submitted from the class of 1998 for this issue.



William Steinbach

Brother Rats, I hope everyone has had a great summer. Fall will soon be upon us. Every year around this time my thoughts wander back to the Institute. Cadre is making their return to Barracks as I

1997: Jeff Matthew in Kuwait. write this; prepping for the incoming class of Rats that will matriculate next Sunday. While I look back at those memories very fondly, I am glad it is them and not me. I have grown too used to air conditioning. Thanks to everyone who submitted updates. Hearing from everyone is the best part of this job. Jason Trubenbach has left the Pentagon and is now on a year-long fellowship with OSD (Office of Secretary of Defense for you nonmilitary types). He did not go far, as he is across the street at Crystal City. He tells me he went to a Nationals game and ran into Charles Marr. Mike Polhamus started a new position as the Inside Sales Manager for Klein Steel, a division of Rochester Steel in November 2009. He and his wife Jamie along with their daughter, Madelyn, are residing in Rochester, NY. Wes Barrow is still working with Ernst & Young as the Lead Recruiter for the Richmond Office. He also tells me he has been selected to the board of advisors of the VMI Economics Department as well as the Young Associate Committee of the Keydet Club Board of Governors. While that is all fine and good, the most important accomplishment he had of the summer was a hole-in-one at the spring 2010 VMI Club of Richmond Golf Tournament on the Par 3 #7 at Independence Golf Club in Richmond, VA. The hole was playing at 170 yards, and

Wes stroked an 8 iron. He was playing with Brannon Howle, Billy Goodrich ’95 and Jason Annis ’03. I double checked with Wes to ensure that he did not use the “foot wedge,” and he ensures me it was legit. Patrick Henderson’s wife, Heather, sent me the following update, “I thought I’d update you on our growing family. Jack Wesley came into the world on May 24th weighing 9 lbs 2 oz and 21” long. Luke is a great big brother, and Jack is a sweet baby. We hosted the Last Supper for the Roanoke Chapter last month. Several upcoming cadets showed up and are excited about their upcoming journey. Patrick and I are looking forward to football season and heading up to tailgate. Maybe we’ll see you there!” Ryan Bogese gets the award for the “Not Really an Update” update. He reports that Jake Abell is still a dirtbag. I told Goose that Jake being a dirtbag is NOT an update; but that the class needed reminding so I would include it. Jake, this is what you get when you fail to send me updates and rely on your former roommates to do your work for you. I see some things will never change. Jake is lazy, and I will bag on him when I deem appropriate. Frazer Orgain requests that anyone standing should sit down for his latest news: Jason Hennigan is getting married in April. Jeremy Obenchain also adds that Hennigan is flying helicopters for the Coast Guard, and he gave Christiane Amanpour (CNN anchor) a ride a few months ago. Jeremy also says he met at least two Arab Marine officers who went through Quantico under Isaac Moore’s leadership, and he hears from them that Isaac can still hold his own in the ring. The search for Coley Campbell is still in effect. Anyone with any sightings please report to me. Jeremy also asked me the whereabouts of Chris Jackson. He believes Chris is in Richmond, but can not confirm. Jeremy also notes the Chris vowed never to use a computer again after May of 1999, so personal contact is needed. Word on the Stoop is that Ben Kincaid got married in Spain back in July. Photographic evidence would be appreciated. Chris Colbow is still in Afghanistan. He will be in Kandahar until September. Jake Hughes sent me what he says was his first update: “I now own TURZAC Realty in Hampton Roads. We have a few agents working for us and I still work in the home building and land development business but I’m focusing now on building the real estate business up. My wife, three sons and I just went over to Virginia Beach last week to


CLASS NOTES hang out with Brian Ross and his family for a day while they were on vacation there.” Thanks for the update, Jake. We lived next door to each other for three years. Don’t be a stranger. Patrick Geoghegan and his wife, Virginia, have made it back to the East Coast from San Francisco and are now living outside of Boston. They’re very happy to be back East. They had a barbecue with Steve Schwanke ’98 and family last month, and he reports they are doing well. Pat has also spoken with Ryan Olson ’96, and they are putting plans together for a visit sometime this fall. Pat also has plans to get another annual canoe trip in this year (4th year in a row) with his brother over Labor Day weekend - all fellas, no children and no women, so he believes it should prove again to be a blast! Sounds like Big Time to me. Woody Cromley is working full time for the Army Reserve, and he is also working on his MBA, which he say takes all of his time. I was wondering why he is not on Facebook as much anymore. Grant Eddy decided it was time to check in with the class and he sent me this: “I figured I’d give you a short update since I never do ... I am still living in Columbia, SC, working for Westinghouse Nuclear Fuel as a supplier quality engineer. My wife, Marci, and I have a 1.5- year-old boy who is a handful. Marci is going to have a baby girl in October.” Good to hear from Grant and his family. I am glad everything is going well for him. Rico Espinoza made it out to Okinawa and is expected to pin on his gold oak leaf in September. Congratulations to Maj. Espinoza. Patrick Meyer tells me that after learning that Mike Rust got his MBA, he was motivated to return to school. Patrick is now a certified financial planner, and he thanks Mike for the motivation and his wife, Julie, for the support. Leroy Trent sends his latest: “Things are good on my end. I finally changed command in recruiting in early July and have now moved to Fort Bragg where I will be a battalion S3. The move went well. Unpacking is always fun- especially with a 1-year-old. Speaking of which, Alex is walking now and keeping us on our toes. I ran my first marathon back in April, it was certainly tough, but I’m glad I did it; I have already signed up for another one in the fall. Nicole and I also ran into Jake Britt, Jochen and Leslie Dunville, and Chris Varner and his girlfriend, Suzie, before we moved. We got together in Richmond for a BBQ and it was good to see everyone. Britt showed up in a shirt that was about three sizes too small to show off for the ladies, and of course we strained him for it! Then we ate, smoked cigars, and enjoyed the company of ‘Mr. Daniels’ later in the evening.” Glad to hear everyone had a good time. I am sure Leroy was just jealous of Britt’s guns. Tom Cruz had numerous updates for the

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class. He sent me the following email: “After Jason Estes and I attended the wedding of Drew Staples to the former Kristine Marchbanks last year, Drew and I got to return the favor, so to speak, at Jason’s wedding to Su-Anne Ward in Raleigh. One of Jason’s brothers, Reverend Douglas Estes ’94 officiated the wedding. Drew is wrapping up his time working for the Brits as a liaison officer from the US Army. He and Kristine have been living near a small British military base near Stonehenge. He tells me he’s eager to get back to America, but I think he’ll miss living in the UK more than he’s letting on. I’m still living in the Hampton Roads area working for Northrop Grumman. I switched jobs about a year ago. Instead of building just submarines now, I get to work on aircraft carriers as well. It’s a good job, but I’m looking to get out of the area, hopefully to the Raleigh area for a job in commercial nuclear power.” Thanks, Tom. I had been wondering what Drew Staples was up to these days. Cameron and Jenny Tabor welcomed their third child into the world. Connor Keith Tabor was born on July 27th. Congrats to my co-dyke and his wonderful wife, Jenny. Matt Hart has been busy in North Carolina. He reports the following: “I got a job with Wachovia and am working as a teller. I am learning a new business and hope to work my way up in the banking world to make my income more equal to what I was making at the church. I have been able to get involved with a new church. I have preached once while the pastor was away, and I am thinking about getting involved with the middle school ministry at the start of the new school year. The VMI Club of the Triad Chapter had a cookout for the new cadets (Rats in the Old Corps). The Class of 1999 grilled the food for the

Class of 1999: Cameron and Jennifer Tabor’s children, Annelise, 4, Big brother Brent, 2, and newborn Connor.

event. Jeff Morrison, Randy Brown and I did the grilling. We had a good time together. We had 41 persons gather to meet/greet the families of the incoming new cadets heading up to Lexington for Matriculation. I believe there were alums from ’56 to ’09 present and accounted for. It was a great event and we had enough leftovers that the class of 1999 is planning another cookout.” Congratulations on the new job, Matt. Special thanks go to Matt for his service to the class. Matt started and manages our class Facebook page and it has been an invaluable source to me as our class agent. I believe that completes this edition of the class of 1999 notes. Thanks for all of the support. Congratulations to all of our BRs who have gotten married or had children since our last update. I believe I will have at least two new births to report next time, God willing. In the Bonds, Bill


Christian Arllen

I trust that by the time you read these words our 10th Reunion will be a fond memory and you will have new stories to add to those collected during our tour at the “I.” A number of you did not make it back due to deployments, and you all are frequently at the forefront of my thoughts. We are thankful for your service and pray you return home safe and sound. Pat Coyle passed away 24 July 2010. He was a captain in the U.S. Army where he was awarded the Bronze Star for his service in Iraq. He is survived by his wife Leslie; daughter, Hayleigh; parents, Margaret and Ralph Coyle Jr.; sisters, Mary Coyle, Geneva Gamell and Catherine Weissinger. Bobby Bartolomeo, Kenny Sykes, Shawn Segreti, Jimmy Sheldon, Matt McComas, Matt Neely, Tony Cerella, Christian Arllen, Matt McKee, Jason Cole, Carl Hammond and Matt Keller were present for Pat’s memorial service. Pat was interred at Virginia Veterans Cemetery, Amelia, VA, and oh how the memories and stories flowed. We enjoyed swapping stories with Pat’s brother in arms Terron Sims from their time in the calvary along with his friends and family. Ryan Thompson ’99 and his wife Kylene, Tom Craig’s sister, were also in attendance along with the family’s many friends. An education fund was established for Pat’s daughter and donations can be made via the following URL: While saddened by the untimely loss of our Brother Rat Pat Coyle this past month, the


CLASS NOTES funeral was an opportunity to grieve with his family and reconnect with old friends. Other updates from BRs follow: Matthew Keller took the Virginia Bar exam in August and Anthony Rayome finished his FAO tour in Egypt. Anthony, Auste and the kids are on their way back to Japan now for another tour on Okinowa. Derek Engelhard and his wife, Jennifer, moved to Atlanta two years ago and love everything ... except the traffic. Matthew and Wendy Martin are doing well in Norfolk, VA. Matt was just promoted to lieutenant commander and will be transferring to a department head tour in the squadron with HSC-26 from the U.S.S. BATAAN where he is currently the Mini Boss. Life is treating them well. Their daughter Ally is 2 1/2 yrs old and son Henry is now 7 months old. Will Moore is now married to a very tolerant woman, who is able to put up with his “creativity,” and he continues to practice law in Gloucester, Virginia. Jared and Amy Snawder just PCSed to Schweinfurt, Germany, after enjoying 2.5 extremely quick years in Melbourne, Australia, at the Australian School of Signals. Jared is currently serving as the S3 for the 44th Signal

Battalion and will be ramping up for a deployment to Afghanistan in later this year. Micah and Nadia North are all still in the Dayton area. Sophie is 2.5, and Jackson is 10 months old. Aside from the poor economy, things are good for the North’s and they are heading down to Panama City, Panama, for Pat Haddock’s wedding. Kenny Myers and his wife stopped by their house a couple weeks ago, and they seem to be doing well. Scott and Windsor Johnson just completed the adoption process. They adopted a little girl in Arizona, and she has assimilated into the family well. The boys, William and Lucas, love being big brothers, and she has dad completely wrapped around her finger. They also added a new dog to the mix, a drathaar from Whit Johnston; he is doing well and is engaged to be married in the spring of next year. Scott speaks regularly with Will Warthen, Jay Kearney and Jim Boatright; all are doing well. Jeff Rhodes is currently attending the Navy War College in Newport, RI, and he recently returned from his third tour in Iraq commanding a field artillery firing battery in Tikrit and later served as the brigade HHC commander. Jeff was recently promoted to major and is busy completing his professional development for

the new pay grade. Jeff was engaged to Genevieve McJunkin of Pittsburgh, PA, and they were married on 24 June 2010 in Pittsburgh. Rob Mason was in the wedding party. Tony and Bethany Cerella will be in Colorado until December when Tony will complete his time as a student at the Colorado School of Mines. Their twins, Sophie and Tony, are doing well and will turn two in September. Edward and Shana Pearson were married this past February. After living in northern VA for the past 10 years, in June, they moved to Long Beach, California, where Ed is now working with Northrop Grumman. They are enjoying the laid back California lifestyle and playing life to the fullest. Pat Haddock is still working for Coca-Cola in Atlanta and in the Army Reserve. He and Charlotte are schedule to marry in Panama this September. Donald O’Sullivan is still in Newburgh, NY, and working for Symantec. He was married this past April and travels often. He caught up with some BRs during his travels including: Pat Haddock out in Las Vegas, Nick Castleberry in Jackson, MS, and Paul Belmont made it to the Don’s wife’s XXth birthday party! (Don I redacted Krysta’s birthday counter for your

Class of 2000 Photos clockwise from top, left: - Over the 2010 Memorial Day weekend, Brett Martin, Kenny Sykes, an unidentified friend and Shawn Segreti went wild boar hunting in Florida. - Capt. Stephen Kohler, commanding officer, and Matt Martin when Martin was promoted to lieutenant commander on the U.S.S. Bataan, August 2010. - Attending Pat Coyle’s interment at Virginia Veterans Cemetery in Amelia, Virginia, July 30, 2010, were, from left, Matt McComas, Matt Neely, Tony Cerella, Christian Arllen, Matt McKee, Jason Cole, Carl Hammond, Matt Keller and Terron Sims.



CLASS NOTES safety and mine :-) Paul recently moved to West Point, and I am confident the O’Sullivans and Belmonts will see each other often; especially at the VMI vs West Point game this fall. Chris Lowrance is also teaching at West Point, and I am sure he has the place wired by now (pun intended). John Ferguson is currently on a short deployment flying B-1s into/out of AOR. He and Molly are still acclimating to the Texas heat, and John continues to instruct at the B-1 FTU at Dyess AFB. Their twins, Dean and Sophie, turned 2 last month and are keeping them busy. B.J. Arvin is about to start his 3rd year as a high school teacher in Donovan, IL. This year will also be his first year coaching high school football and due to the game schedule he missed the reunion. Justin and Jackie Wood celebrated the birth of their second child, Jacsyn Olivia Grant Wood, born on July 1st in Nashville, TN. Her big sister, Jordan, is enjoying showing her the ropes. Shawn and Erin Segreti welcomed their first child, Margaret May into the family on December 30th of last year. Carl and Rachael Hammond were blessed with the birth of their second child, Anna Catherine, in February 2010 and their son, Carter, loves being a big brother! They are still living in Columbia, SC. Mac Semler and his wife are doing well in the Philadelphia area. They are expecting their first child around Halloween and are excited. Mac returned from an amazing school trip to China recently and should finish his MBA from Villanova in the spring. I want to thank all the men that pulled together the reunion actives and fund raising efforts. Your efforts are greatly appreciated. Christian


Jason Whitaker

I hope everyone is doing well as we near the end of 201 and get ready for 2011. We are less than a year away from our 10-year reunion and I look forward to seeing many of you there. The 10-year reunion will be held on the weekend of Oct. 21-22, 2011. Thank you to those of you who have volunteered to assist with the Reunion Committee and Fundraising Committee. We have a lot of work ahead of us and we will do our best to put together a memorable 10-year reunion. I want to get to the class notes and will follow them up with some administrative matters that are important for us as a class. Congratulations to Parker Reeves and his

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wife, Jenni, who announced they are expecting a baby towards the end of the year. Back in May, I went with Parker, Jenni, Nate Charles and Justin Harber to the DC101 Chili Cookoff in Washington, D.C. Despite the rain we had a great time and enjoyed the music from Alice N’ Chains and Stone Temple Pilots. The show on stage was great but the person watching was even better, oh the sights you see when at an outdoor concert. Parker recently spoke with Tillman Bowling’s mother who reported Tillman and his family will be moving from Florida to the Leesburg, VA, area where Tillman will be working as an air traffic controller. Parker also shared a funny story with me about how he, Jenni, Nate, and Nate’s girlfriend were on Nate’s boat in a lake near Roanoke one Saturday night. They had been on the lake for a little while when it started to rain. Unfortunately the boat would not start so Nate and Parker had to get wooden oars out and paddle forty-five minutes back to the pier. Things like this only seem to happen to Nate; too funny. Congratulations to Adam Zydron and his wife, Courtney, who were married on May 22, 2010. They recently left Chesapeake, VA, to move to Nashville, TN, for Courtney’s emergency medicine residency with Vanderbilt Medical Hospital. Adam completed his M.S. in engineering management from Florida Institute of Technology (Aug-09) and is managing the Midwest operations for H&B Railroad Inc. Congratulations to Charlie Bunting and his wife, Sheida, who were married this year. Charlie and Sheida moved to New York City so she could begin her residency for anesthesia. Also attending a celebration for Charlie and Sheida in Newport, RI, for their wedding was Jon Schott, Adam Maldonado and Brad Muston. Charlie extends a sincere invitation to any Brother Rats to meet up for a beer in NYC. Charlie is looking forward to the reunion next year and sends his blessings to everyone serving on our behalf overseas. I received a sweet letter from Charlene Cook, the mother of Howie Cook. Mrs. Cook is very proud of her son and wanted to add onto the previous class notes about Howie’s graduation from the U.S. Army Flight School at Fort Rucker, AL in March. Apparently what Howie left out is that his uncle, Brian Keefer (Commander, USN retired and a 1979 Citadel graduate), contacted his old Citadel roommate Brig. Gen. William “Tim” Crosby ahead of the graduation to mention to him that his nephew, Howie, was graduating. Brig. Gen. Crosby made plans to be the speaker for the graduation ceremony and during his speech he mentioned the “jeep” incident with the Citadel. Brig. Gen. Crosby pointed out that to the graduating class that someone who participated in the caper was even present for the graduation

and then identified Howie. When Howie’s wife Shelley went to pin his flight wings on, Brig. Gen. Crosby stepped forward and presented her with his original flight wings which she in turn pinned onto Howie. Fred Hair sent me an update from Iraq and I’ll let you enjoy his words. “I’m good as can be over here. Brigade is almost within two months of our redeployment, so you can certainly believe that people are starting to get a little stir crazy. I successfully completed company command and passed the guidon to the next guy for his round back at the end of May. Two years and some change as a CO. I felt like I had the weight of the world lifted off of me when I was finally done. Now I have the pleasure of briefing the division commander on the status of brigade operations during morning updates. Not as hard as it sounds. I wish I had scored one of the early redeployment slots, but I guess they like keeping the worker bees in theater.” Jarret Somers is currently in CA for an outage at Diablo Canyon Nuclear Power Plant and will be there until early November. Jamie Dillon moved to San Diego in January to take a job with Space and Naval Warfare (SPAWAR). Jamie reported Tom Gleason just got out there as well for his assignment at Miramar with the Marine Corps and Alex Tedla is also living on the West Coast. Jamie extended a hearty welcome for any visitors to their new beach town. Jamie commented he frequently travels back to Washington, D.C., where he sees Drew Carbone, who has the coolest 9-month-old little boy named Joey with his equally cool wife, Kristi! Megan Portavoce sent in the following from France. “I am still living in France and just filed my request for French nationality. In a year or so, I shall be Franco-American! I also just graduated with a master in law (Intellectual Property- Patents) from the Centre d’Etudes

Class of 2001: At the DC101 Chili Cook Off in Washington, D.C., on May 22, 2010, were, from left, Parker and Jenni Reeves with Nate (John Rambo) Charles.


CLASS NOTES Internationales de la Propriété Intellectuelle in Strasbourg, France. The fact that the program was entirely in French did not make things any easier! I am studying to become a European Patent Attorney and plan to take the bar exam next year. Should anyone wish to visit Provence, they are welcome to get in touchthough I may be hitting the books, I would welcome a study break.” In addition to his regular job and readying himself and some gung-ho classmates for their march from New Market to the Mother “I” for our ten-year reunion Steve Skakandy still has time for other things. On June 23, Steve helped coordinate the first ever VMI Camp Lejeune/Crystal Coast Alumni Chapter which met aboard Camp Lejeune at Hospital Point. John Moder ’98, Josh Lewis ’96, Sgt Major John Holmes ’82 (honorary) and Steve welcomed 25 alumni and their families with hamburgers, hotdogs and beer. Steve said Nick Pomaro, Nick’s wife, Nancy, and their two children attended but unfortunately Charlie Benbow and his wife, Stephanie, couldn’t be there because Charlie was still deployed. Steve said the alumni classes ranged from Joel McBroom ’82 to two alumni from the class of 2008, who were Jared Gastrock ’08 and his wife, Laura, and Justin Kunert ’08. The chapter was planning another function for Oct. 23 that will be a hybrid Founder’s Day/Marine Corps Birthday Ball also at Hospital Point. Steve was happy to report that several of our Brother Rats have ponied up for the hike from New Market to VMI. As of late July, they put together a squad sized element that wants to make the walk, and Steve commented they’ll happily take anyone else who wants to join them. Steve said that Steven Harris, who will be walking with them, asked him if it was going to be a “Hazex,” and Steve told him that instead of a conventional fighting force, they’ll look more

Class of 2001: Howie Cook graduated from the U.S. Army Flight School at Fort Rucker, Alabama, on March 3, 2010. Attending were, from left, Cook and his wife, Shelley, with Brig. Gen. Tim Crosby.


like a band of gypsies. Both of them chose the name of this operation to be Operation Tinsmith because Romani (gypsies) were historically called “tinkers” from their common occupation as tinsmiths and tin is also the traditional gift for a decennial (10th) anniversary. Here in Woodbridge, VA, life is well and I have learned so much from parenthood. It’s hard to believe that our twin girls will be almost a year old by the time this edition is published. Work is great, but nothing makes my day more then to come home and see the smiles radiate from their glowing faces when I come through the front door, or on weekend mornings when Dawn and I enter their room to get them out of their cribs. Between daddy time and work, I try to do the best I can to serve as your class agent and I want to thank all of you who have sent me thanks, it is quite humbling.

my name or send me an email at the address above with your contact information so I can make sure it gets updated. We also plan to use the class page on Facebook (The VMI Class of 2001) to post announcements for the reunion and send out other class-wide communications as well. Finally, despite our nation’s continued economic downturn and sluggishness, I want to commend our class for the increase in charitable donations to VMI over the past year. Thank you to those who have contributed to our alma mater now and in the past, and I encourage everyone to do the same in the future. As alumni we need to carry the torch that was raised by those who came before us and who have given so much back to the Institute as we witnessed on reunion weekends during our cadetship. I wish you all the best over the holiday season and God bless you!

’02 Class of 2001: At the Icehouse in Swansboro, North Carolina, July 4, 2010, were, from left, Steve Skakandy, Eric Fromm and Justin Walskey. By the time you read this we have eleven months until our 10-year reunion. From a handful of volunteers, we have assembled a committee which will help plan the reunion and coordinate all fundraising. As details became solid you will start receiving more updates so you can plan as early on as possible for the reunion weekend. To ensure everyone receives timely information I need you to make sure that the Alumni Association and I have your current contact information, particularly email, phone number and home address. I still get letters, cards and other class mailings returned to me because people have not provided updates as they moved, changed jobs, etc. When talking to fellow BRs remind them to do this as it is crucial not only for this reunion but for our class in the future. To update your information go to the Alumni Association’s VMI RANKS Web site which allows you to sign up and edit your contact information online. You can also reach me via Facebook by searching under

Salmaan Khawaja

Brother Rats, I hope that this edition of the Alumni Review finds you and yours doing well. Life is going well for the Khawaja family in Richmond. Laura’s job as a prosecutor is going well, and I’m still navigating my way through the nuances of group private practice. We recently got another Llewellyn Setter puppy that we named Jayden and are having a heck of a time getting him housebroken, but he and big sister (I guess they are breed-cousins) River are getting along just fine. On to the notes … Jessie Barnard’s wife, Elyse, sent me an email recently with an update on their growing family. Elyse let me know that, in February 2010, Jesse was promoted and the whole family was transferred to Fort Worth, Texas. The family had the best road trip they’ve ever had, and it was “no small feat considering we had a 2-year-old and a wife that was 6 months pregnant!” Soon thereafter, on April 26, 2010, Jesse and Elyse welcomed their first son, Breece William Parker Barnard, to the world. Weighing in at 7 lbs. 7 oz; he joined his big sister Hallie Bea (age 2). Jesse also begins his MBA at Cox School of Business very soon. Jason Breeding is prepping the dissertation phase of his doctorate and hopes to be finish the “big monster” by December 2011. Jason is finally getting to teach chemistry at Abingdon High School and will continue to teach at the local community college to bring in some extra income, as this is the 3rd year in a row


CLASS NOTES without a pay or cost of living increase. Jason’s wife Amberlea was just promoted to senior southwest regional loan processor at her bank and is extremely excited for this new opportunity. Amberlea and Jason vacationed to Alaska this summer on the Carnival Spirit and during their cruise, they happened to run into Chris and Ida Bluhm ’03 who were on their honeymoon. Chris is currently with the Army and is stationed in Hawaii. At the time these notes were written (August), Heidi Mason Nagel and David Nagel ’01 were expecting the birth of their second child, Mason. Hopefully, by the time the Review is published, Mason will have settled in nicely with their family and Heidi and David are getting back to a normal sleep schedule! Best wishes to the Nagel family! Conor Evans dropped me a line on Facebook to let me know he just moved to the “metropolis” of South Bend, Indiana, in order to start working on his MBA at Notre Dame. Conor writes “Rah Virginia Mil and Cheer, Cheer for Old Notre Dame!” Eric Baines just started his second year of law school at the University of Richmond – best of luck, Eric! Dr. Marc Yelle is currently completing a visiting clerkship at Stanford, and then he is going to Nepal in October for a medical mission trip and also trying to get applications for residency completed as well. Sounds like the plate’s pretty full at the Yelle household! Mike Imrich dropped me a line to thankfully let me know that he and Taylor Jones are not currently incarcerated, which is always a good thing. John Leon let me know that he is about to finish his first round as the battalion reardetachment commander for 1-6 FA, 3-1 IBCT at Fort Knox. The unit is returning shortly from NTC (California) and they can’t get back quicker. They told John that the RD Commander is one of the hardest jobs in the Army just because of all the BS you have to deal with ... and if this training deployment is any indication, they are right. If he doesn’t get fired for whatever reason then he should be promoted to the position of RD Commander when they actually deploy next year. John’s also been tasked with establishing the only local chapter of the US Field Artillery Association in the Fort Knox area (just waiting on the association’s approval), and he’s also working on getting a St. Barbara’s Ball for this October. Ed Skarda, who is still working as a business banker for JP Morgan Chase, visited the “Mother I” back in May for the alumni Rugby game ... and, unfortunately, tore his MCL 10 minutes into the game. Aside from sustaining

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the injury, he had a great time with Anthony Montgomery, Ben Bowman and Noah Diehl ’04. Ed’s decided that, after 10 years of rugby, he thinks it’s time to stick to hockey, “as it is a safer sport.” Hah! When Ed was there, numerous cadets asked him if he was “Mr. Skarda from ’02” and they remembered our class and the “Step Off/Up”. I think we might all remember that too, not to mention a certain SGM’s booming voice of apology resonating throughout JM Hall. Ed rehashed the story on numerous occasions, and “I was given a lot of hugs lol ... one cadet told me he was going to put my name up alongside of Slemp ... haha.” Keenan Entsminger very kindly sat down and wrote me a long email with plenty of updates about numerous BRs. I really appreciate it Keenan – thanks! Keenan let me know that he and his wife, Carrie, and I are living in Richmond, VA. Carrie is currently in nursing school at Virginia Commonwealth University and Keenan teaches U.S. History at L.C. Bird High School and is also an adjunct professor at John Tyler Community College. Carrie and Keenan spend their free time with their wonderful yellow lab, Boone. Keenan writes: “I have been fortunate enough to stay in touch with a lot of the guys in and outside of Richmond over the past eight years” and he let me know the following:

Grey Lester and his wife, Lia are also in Richmond. Grey is still with professional governmental underwriters, and Lia is an elementary school teacher at John B. Cary in Richmond City. Keenan sees Grey quite often. Grey, Brett Prillaman, Derick Swenck and Keenan are on a Richmond City League softball team together. Those guys also helped Keenan out with the VMI Club of Richmond annual summer picnic this past July. It was a great time and there was a solid turnout. Keenan wanted to extend his thanks to them, Brandon Garrett ’01, Will Charlet ’01 and Eddie Desch ’10 for all the help putting the event together. Special thanks also to Meade Spotts ’79 for letting the Richmond Club put the picnic on at his place year in and year out. Whitt Hall and his wife, Casey, are currently in Houston, Texas. Whitt is an engineer with Transcore and Casey has taken a leave of absence from work due to the birth of their first child, Jackson Travis Hall (named for Stonewall not Castleberry). Keenan will be heading down September 9th to celebrate Whitt’s 30th birthday and to see Jackson (Hall not Castleberry) for the first time. Jesse Bilthuis and his wife, Kerr,i are currently living in Powhatan County, Virginia. Jesse is still with Dominion Power and Kerri teaches math at Providence Middle School in

Class of 2002: On July 8, 2010, while sailing the Tracy Arm Fjord in southeast Alaska, Jason and Amberlea Breeding, left, ran into honeymooning couple Chris and Ida Bluhm ’03.


CLASS NOTES Chesterfield County, Virginia. They have two little boys, Tyler and Zack. Both of the boys are the spiting image of Jesse. Keenan and Carrie just linked up with them in June of this year, and everyone was doing well. Nate Jones is back in his hometown of West Chester, Pennsylvania. Nate is getting ready to go back to school to become a teacher. He will start school this fall semester in West Chester. That’s right- Nate Jones will be sculpting young minds in the near future. Best of luck, Jonesy! (Or maybe we should be wishing good luck to his students? Just kidding of course!) Brett Prillaman is living in Richmond and has gone back to work as an engineer at Sydnor Hydro Inc. since he returned from Iraq last fall. Brett continues to serve in the rank of captain with the G-5 staff at the 80th Training Division. Brett is getting ready to tie the knot this Fall with Nicole Bulls. Nicole is a mission coordinator for the Virginia Baptist Mission Board. They have been staying busy getting Brett’s house ready for her arrival. Derick Swenck and his wife, Meghan, are also in Richmond. Derick is an engineer with Cleveland Cement, and Meghan is a physical therapist. They had their first child this past year. They have a beautiful daughter named

Georgia who has made most of our wives totally baby crazy. Says Keenan: “Thanks again, Derick.” Jon Tibbs and his wife, Sam, are living out in Goochland County, Virginia, and doing quite well. The Entsminger’s were able to catch up with them over the 4th of July on a James River tubing trip. Jon just graduated with his MBA from William & Mary and took at job as a project manager at Capital One. Sam continues to work as a nurse in the cardiac unit at Bon Secours Hospital in Richmond. Jackson Castleberry and his wife, Michelle, have recently moved to Boston, Massachusetts, from D.C. Jackson took a job at Google and he seems to love it. Michelle has been working in sales and has been traveling quite a bit. Jackson said that they are working hard, but are still finding time to have fun. Reuben Trant and his wife, Ashlyn, are living down in Norfolk, Virginia. Reuben took a job as a civilian engineer with the Navy and continues to serve as a captain in the Army Reserve. Ashlyn is an elementary school teacher in York County. Keenan was able to catch up with Reuben in June, and he says married life is great, and his new job is going well.

Class of 2002

Photos clockwise from top, left: - Jesse and Elyse Barnard’s daughter, Hallie Bea, 2, holding newborn Breece. - Breece Barnard, son of Jesse and Elyse, at age 3 months. - Jesse Barnard doing what he loves best – sitting in the rocking chair with Hallie Bea and Breece William.


John and Lea Trant were at Keenan’s 30th birthday party this past winter. They are doing well and happy to be back in Virginia. They are down in Chesapeake, and John is working as a government construction manager in Virginia Beach, and Lea is working as a mental health counselor in Newport News. Tim Burke was also at Keenan’s birthday party this past winter. It was great to catch up with him. Tim is working for the FBI and is still enjoying the single life in Atlanta. The Richmond crew is trying to find a long weekend to head down to Atlanta to crash Tim’s bachelor pad. Tri Tang and his wife, Jennifer, are still down in Charlotte, North Carolina, and have two beautiful girls, Lily and Annie. Jennifer is now pregnant with their third child. Tri is a hospital administrator down there and really enjoys life in Charlotte. Tim Wolford is still in D.C., finished up a master’s degree, and is with the FBI. Keenan hasn’t spoken with Tim in awhile but hopes to catch up with him this fall. Ryan Hickey is in Rochester, New York, and serves as police officer with the Rochester Police Department, and, at the time these notes were written, was working on a gang task force through the department. He may have the best stories of anyone I currently know in the workforce. He is another guy that we owe a trip to see. Hope all is well, lad. Matt Blanchette and his wife, Emily are currently living in northern Virginia. He and his wife are both Naval officers, and the Richmond crew hopes to see them when they get some down time. We miss you guys! Eddie Anderson and his wife, Charlotte, are living here in Richmond. Eddie is a financial advisor for Dominion Power, and Charlotte is an attorney. Keenan and Carrie caught up with them on the 4th of July tubing trip. It was great to see them. Jake Copty is back in Roanoke, VA, working for the family business. Jake and the Entsmingers hang out often, and I’m sure they will be hanging out again at some VMI football games this fall. David Ross is still with the Richmond Fire Department, was recently promoted and has been really active in the VMI Club of Richmond, hanging out with a lot of BRs during the Strawberry Hill Races event this past May. Keenan wanted to extend his thanks to Dave for all the help in making that event a success. That’s it this time around. Please drop me a line with notes about you, yours and the BRs you’ve been hanging out with over time. Picture files need to be rather large now for the Review to be able to publish them, so please


CLASS NOTES keep that in mind as well, and if you don’t see a picture published that you submitted, it’s usually because the file size was small. I will contact you to let you know if your file is too small, when the Review Staff lets me know, but that’s what the issue is. In the Spirit ... Salmaan

William Talley V


Phil Kerns

Editor’s Note: There were no class notes submitted from the class of 2003 for this issue.

Ryan Shealy


C. Justin Roberts

Hey, BRs! Hard to believe that the summer is already coming to a close. I swear – time is going by faster every year! I’m happy to report, though, that we have a ton of updates this time around! First off, lots of baby news! Congratulations to Steven Linkous and his wife, Michelle, are expecting their first baby due Feb. 2nd! Ali Cassell Matthews, who just opened up a consultative services company for kids with autism, and her husband Bubba Matthews ’03 were married in May in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic, are expecting their first baby as well. Jon and Sarah Dumas welcomed their second child, Elliot Mason, on July 4th and he weighed 8lbs 5oz and was 21.5 inches long! Drew Hardin just finished his MBA and just had his first daughter, Avery Jean Hardin, and named John Ginder her godfather. Winston Harrell finished flight school in Danville, Virginia and received his private pilot’s license in June. He is currently serving as vice president of the South Boston Lions Club and is a deacon at First Presbyterian Church in South Boston. Scott Campbell is still working between the Guard and Richmond PD. He has been reassigned by the Army to the DPU under the 91st Troop Command as of 15 July as their public affairs officer. Craig Hamilton is getting married

2010-Issue 4

to Sarah Chesser at the end of August. Dan Ropp is coming from Japan to be the best man ,and Ed Chen is a groomsman. Eric Hepfer and his wife, Kristy, are moving to Boston this week so he can start the MBA program at Harvard the next week. Tony Peters, his wife, Capt. Manuela Peters, USAF and their son, Simon, are still in Spokane WA for about 1 more year. He was “Mr. Mom” while his wife deployed in support of OEF to Kyrgyzstan (flying KC-135s Tankers over Afghanistan). He has been a Navy Officer Recruiter for a year now and is planning on getting out as soon as possible and pursuing a teaching certificate. Tony has been coaching wrestling at a local high school and was blessed with the opportunity to coach Team Washington at the USA Wrestling National Championships this year. Simon will be over 1 year old by the time this hits the news stands. He already has his provisional appointment and he claps along to The VMI Spirit! Matt Sharpe and his wife, Alexis, have been married more than four years now and things are great - they spent three weeks in Italy earlier this summer. They’re still enjoying living outside of San Francisco, and he’s continuing to work for NASA as a project manager in the Human Computer Interaction group out at Moffett Field, CA. John Puvogel had a few updates for me. He and his wife, Ashley bought their first house and got a puppy when they moved to Virginia Beach in November 2008 so he could take a new job with the Department of the Navy. John volunteered for a Civilian IA deployment to Afghanistan with the US Army and has been there since Feb. 2010 (leave to go home and return to

his Navy job in a few short weeks). Currently, Derek Raymond is in lovely downtown Baghdad, enjoying the obscene heat. He got engaged to Lilya Haynes in January before he left and the ceremony will be in December in Ft. Lauderdale, FL. Jarod Parker is over there too, and Derek just talked with him on the phone. Things are going well for Josh Powers and his wife Martha. They are still stationed at Fort Campbell Kentucky. Their son, Patrick, turns 3 on Aug. 29th, and he is quite a handful. He is still in command of A Company 3-187, and is halfway through his third deployment, this time to Afghanistan. Josh redeployed in October and then will PCS back to Fort Benning. He will most likely be in Afghanistan again in February. Josh ran into Jason Quash in Baghram on his way back for leave and got to spend some time with Dave Harris and Craig Hamilton in DC. Sean McElroy just completed his company command. His change of command ceremony was 01 July 2010. In June, he competed in the world series of poker, events number five and number eight. He cashed in event number eight and got 125th place out of 2341. “It was a really awesome experience,” Sean says. While in Vegas, he and his fiancée went skydiving. Other than that, He is just around Ft. Polk until October, when he PCS’s to the CLCCC (Combined Logistics Captains Career Course) at Ft. Lee. It’s a six-month school. After that, he’s not 100% sure where he’s going; however, he is trying to get stationed at Nellis Air Force base in Henderson, NV (about 15 minutes from the Vegas strip). Remind me not to play cards with that guy, haha!

Class of 2004: Eric, Staci and Savannah Waters at Spouse Flight Day in front of a CV-22.


CLASS NOTES Eric Waters and his family have for Chip Satterlee, which was the been living in Albuquerque, NM for norm since everybody sees Chip the past seven months. He has just somewhere. “He is like some kind of finished training on the Air Force’s traveling garden gnome,” Tim. My CV-22 Osprey. His squadron comco-dyke, Chris Richman, graduated mander is an alumnus from VMI, sniper school in June this year and Gray Riddick ’90. The flying is he’s trying out for Special Forces in great, and they have loved living in September, trying to get that Green Albuquerque. Mark Hamilton is now Beret. He’s still working for office stationed at Cannon Air Force Base in of personnel management (full time) Clovis, NM. He is also flying the CVand living in Indianapolis. 22. Eric and the family will be moving Lastly, I wanted to apologize to Hurlburt Field, FL, in October, and for not having an entry in the last are very excited about heading down Alumni Review, I’ve been dedicatto Florida! ing pretty much all of my time up Eric Damon wrote in to tell me here in Pennsylvania to the projects that Landon Winkelvoss is currently I’m managing, and May was an deployed to Afghanistan doing intelextremely busy month. That aside, ligence for the government. Before things for me are going great. Gethe left, Eric, Mo Pipkin and Terrell ting some awesome experience up Class of 2004: Tony Peters coaching Team Washington Jackson meet up for beers to say here as I’m overseeing four major at the USA Wrestling National Championships. goodbye in Alexandria, VA. Mike manufacturing line installations and Gregory is back from his deploybalancing my duties as a controls Lessen’s bachelor party a couple weeks ago. Jon ment in Kosovo and on military leave engineer for my companies plants Rushin, Brandon Smith and Mike Coakley were until he goes back to work with Lynchburg Police all over the US and Canada. there too, and they all had a great time! Department. Gary Cutler is currently a EBOLC ’04! ’04! ’04! ... Ryan Shealy Josh Montero, his wife Kari, and their two Instructor over at Fort Leonard Wood, training boys are doing well, though unfortunately his dad Timothy Johnson engineer lieutenants. He and his wife, Erin, are passed away this past July. In January 2011, he will enjoying their new house and he’s been playing attend the Field Artillery Captains Career Course rugby in his spare time. He’ll be switching over at Ft Sill, OK. Tim Price is currently commandto student mode and starting the Captain’s Career ing Delta Company, 2-502 IN, in the 101st. They Course this upcoming January. Sean O’Donnell William Ray are deployed to southern Afghanistan and things is getting out of the AF and just moved back to are going well. He has not seen any BRs except northern Virginia. He partied in the OBX for Jon


Class of 2004: Matt Sharpe and his wife, Alexis, hiking to the top of Half Dome at Yosemite National Park in July 2010.


Brother Rats: By the time you read this set of notes, many of you will have traveled to Lexington for the reunion and will already be up-to-date on many of the updates listed. With that in mind, I would like to thank those of you who made it to the reunion and hope you had a great time. To those that couldn’t make it, I understand you all have various commitments that pulled you away from the reunion and we hope to see you at the next reunion, but hopefully sooner than that. Without any further delay, here are the notes: Sam Johnson and his wife, Lyndsay, welcomed their first son, Connor James, into the world on June 27, 2010. Sam reports that “Connor’s already wearing his first VMI shirt, and we’ll hold out to see if he wants to join the class of 2031.” Sam continues, “As for everyone else, I know that Andrew


CLASS NOTES Stone will be at the reunion, and Tom Nick Viar sends word that his son, Caleb baby boy, Timothy William, into the world on Hardinge will try to make it with his wife Daniel, was born on May 5, 2010, and that July 14th. Aaron will get to enjoy him for a and triplet girls. However, you can imagine “he’s huge already.” Unfortunately, Nick will few weeks until he takes his company (A Co how hard it is to travel with three newborns. not be able to make the reunion this fall. 2-7 CAV) to Iraq this fall. John Streetman is not going to be able to Christine and Aaron Childers welcomed a Lev Pobirsky will be out of the Marine make it, but he is still in Southern Corps as of Sept. 4, 2010, and California and is getting into the will be taking a corporate job private security sector.” in Hartford, Connecticut, where Matt Hendricks sends word he’ll move with his wife. that his wife, Lynn, is pregnant Jim White and his wife, with their first child, and she is Whitney, are doing well in due in February. He also earned northern Virginia. In January, his masters in education from Old Jim received his professional Dominion University and is getting engineering license. ready to start his fifth year as a Chris Perry was licensed as high school English teacher-AmerMinister on July 18, 2010, at the ican Literature. This will be Matt’s First Baptist Church in Lexingsecond year as the English departton, Virginia. There were several ment chair at his high school. VMI alumni, faculty and staff Being in northern Virginia, Matt in attendance to include Jeremy gets to see Mark Lenzi and Tim Ward, Josh Lyles, Amanda Class of 2005: Triplets Siena Elaine, Rowan Anna and Riemann on a more frequent basis Moore ’09, Col. Thomas B Jovie Jane, daughters of Tom and Missy Hardinge, picas the two are both TBS instructors Moncure ’72, Col. L.E. Hurlbut tured at 2 months old. at Quantico. and Chaplain James Park.

Class of 2005: On July 24, 2010, Gracie Frost married Jeff Smith in Richmond, Virginia. Pictured were, from left, Michael Dongieux, J.R. Fidler ’02, Jeff Smith III ’72, Will Paulette, Ben Rand ’04, the bride and groom, Henry Lynch, Duke Acors, Wells Griffith, Tom Innes, Vadim Simakoff ’03 and Bill Paulette ’69.

2010-Issue 4


CLASS NOTES Mark Conley is now stationed in Little Rock, Arkansas, teaching young Navigators the way of the C-130 world. He also adds that Phil Shapiro is about to deploy for another 4 months. Lane Toomey ’74, the Cape Fear Alumni Association Chapter president, sends word that Loren Gernandt was recently recognized for excellence by being inducted into the Sergeant Audie Murphy Club on June 25, 2010 at Fort Bragg. This group is an Army-wide organization that recognizes outstanding non-commissioned officers. Col.Ted Kientz ’79 (Ret) and Mr. Toomey had the pleasure of attending the ceremony. Lane adds “knowing Loren from our chapter events, I doubt he would not toot his own horn about such an honor. Also, he was recognized as the XVIII Airborne Corps NCO of the Year in April 2010. SSG Gernandt is a distinguished young NCO whom the class of 2005 should be proud.” Ryan Murphy is doing well in Afghanistan. After returning from leave, he took over an Apache company in Kandahar and will most likely remain with the unit for the five months or so remaining of the deployment.

Jason Reinitz moved out of Florida at the end of June and is now stationed in the DC area. He’s been in touch with Derek Rankin and Scarlett Collins and ran into Chris Powell ‘96 in a course in Washington, D.C. Jeff Smith married Miss Maggie Frost on July 24, 2010 in Richmond, Virginia. Jeff also reports that this turned out to be the “hottest day in Richmond for the summer.” In attendance at the ceremony were Michael Dongieux, J.R. Fidler ’02, Jeff Smith III, Will Paulette, Ben Rand ’04, Henry Lynch, Duke Acors, Wells Griffith, Tom Innes, Vadim Simakhov ’03 and Bill Paulette ’69. As for your class agents, nothing drastically new to report. In June, I had the opportunity to head down to Charleston, South Carolina to witness the wedding of Ashley Brunson to our very own, William K. DeShazor. Tim Riemann and Jay Coleman served as groomsmen, Christian DeShazor ’04 was the best man, Class of 2005: Capt. Ben Melton received his green beret in a graduation ceremony at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, and many 2005 Brother Rats on July 8, 2010, after he successfully completed the were in attendance to include Special Forces Qualification Course. Andy Karnes, Marc Lyons, Rich Litwin, Duke Acors, Shore Stokes, Lawton Way, Will Ray, Ryan King, Donnie Barbaree, Justin Harris, Mark Lenzi, Saul Newsome and Alex Boykin. Other VMI gentlemen in attendance were Ollie Way ’75, Andy Barden ’03 and Phil Steinhoff ’11. I will not fail to also mention the lovely VMI wives and girlfriends in attendance for the weekend’s festivities: Mrs. Ashley Reimann, Mrs. Ashley Coleman, Miss Emily Mendelssohn, Mrs. April Lyons, Miss Bri Cox, Miss Sarah Bires, Miss Shelton Weatherford, Mrs. Emily Ray, Miss Ashley Ashley Mayes, Miss Nicole Penn, Miss Maureen Bell, Miss Kaitlin Whidden, Mrs. Bonnie Way and Miss Kristen Irving. The ceremony was held at St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church in Mount Pleasant, South Carolina, with the reception following at the Francis Marion Hotel. Speaking for myself, it was a wonderful ceremony and the reception was filled with great food, great friends and many great memories. A Class of 2005: On June 19, 2010, Ashley Brunson married Will DeShazor great weekend all around and on behalf of the in Charleston, South Carolina. Pictured were, from left, Will Ray, Justin class, I wish Ashley and Will even better years Harris, Tim Johnson, Christian DeShazor ’04, Duke Acors, Mark Lenzi, Will to come. DeShazor, Tim Reimann, Donnie Barbaree, Saul Newsome, Ashley DeShazor, While I was down in Charleston, Chris Jay Coleman, Shore Stokes, Ollie Way ’75, Marc Lyons, Rich Litwin, Andy Karnes, Ryan King, Phil Steinhoff ’11, Lawton Way and Alex Boykin. Johnson shot over from Augusta, Georgia, as he was on break from medical school before he



CLASS NOTES starts into a two year series of rotations where he will “disappear off of the face of the earth.” Jason Downs came down from Surf City for the weekend to hang out. Jason is still with 2nd Recon at Camp Lejeune and will be heading off on a MEU sometime this fall. When I wasn’t off at wedding events, I was hanging out with these two gents with some mutual friends on their boat seeing all the Charleston Harbor had to offer. Apparently, during the wedding reception, Jason was putting his superior nautical abilities on display as he helped tow some inept Citadel cadets back in from Morris Island. The weekend following the Fourth of July, I headed down to Fort Bragg, North Carolina for Ben Melton’s graduation from the Special Forces Qualification Course. Ben is slotted to join the 5th Special Forces Group at Fort Campbell, Kentucky and, at the time of submitting the notes, will not be able to make the reunion due to deployment. Following graduation, I briefly spoke with Danny Fields, who was Ben’s roommate. Danny was getting ready to start Robin Sage, the final exercise of the Q Course, and was slotted to join the 3rd Special Forces Group following graduation. After the graduation events, Ben, his girlfriend, Courtney, Will Ray, and I headed down to Surf City to hang out with Jason Downs and his girlfriend, Catherine. Despite a few thunderstorms, the weather was great and the company even better as a great weekend was had by all.

That concludes the latest edition of the class notes. The next set of notes should be filled with lots of updates and many pictures from the reunion. For those who submitted updates, thanks so much. We enjoy hearing about what’s going on in your lives. If you haven’t checkedin yet, please do. We’d love to hear from everyone. Until next time … In the bonds, Tim Johnson


Editor’s Note: There were no class notes submitted from the class of 2006 for this issue.


Sally Coffman Arciero

Editor’s Note: There were no class notes submitted from the class of 2007 for this issue.


Class of 2005: Lyndsay and Sam Johnson’s son, Connor James, was born on June 27, 2010.

2010-Issue 4

Will Davis

Robert Hill

To begin, I want to pass on information on Sgt. Dan . On this day in August, Dan is at the National Naval Medical Center in Bethesda, MD. While serving with USMC in Afghanistan, an IED detonated very close to Dan and he received several injuries to his body. Dan eventually made it to Bethesda by way of Germany following the incident. Dan has undergone several surgeries since returning to the States and hopefully, by the time these notes are published, Dan has returned home to continue his recovery. Please continue to keep Dan, his family, and close friends, in your prayers as Dan continues to recover. As I mentioned in previous notes, Reggie was signed by the Golden State Warriors. After playing under two ten-day contracts, the Warriors signed Reggie for the remainder of the 2009-10 season. Reggie has since been signed to play for the Warriors in the upcoming NBA season. During this year’s season, Reggie average 15.2 points per game, 4.60 rebounds

per game, and 2.8 assists per game. During the summer months, Reggie competed in the NBA’s summer league in Las Vegas, NV, and finished second in the league’s scoring. Good luck this season Reggie! Mr. and Mrs. Brett welcomed Gavin Gunnar Skoog to the world on August 11th at 4:14AM. Gavin weighed in at 7lbs 2ozs, and was 20 ½ inches long. Both Mom and Gavin are home and doing well! Congrats to the Skoog Family on their newest edition. With the news of Dan, I received a lot of feedback and tried to update our email chain as best as possible. The list has over 200 BRs at the time which has led to a large list of updates for this edition. Please keep the emails coming! Peter and Jason are going to fly helicopters for the Air Force at Ft. Rucker in Alabama. Pete noted he would definitely rather be on an Air Force base but Ft. Rucker will do for now. Both Pete and Jason will graduate from pilot training in October and afterwards head to Albuquerque. Pete has seen Nate in Panama City a few times since he’s been at Ft. Rucker as well. Eddie is done with graduate school. Eddie is going to be moving back to the Chicago Area, and he will begin working for the family business, Christopher B. Burke Engineering, LTD, in September. While in Chicago, Eddie had a chance to meet up with Chris, who was on leave from Afghanistan. Matt is doing well in Iraq. His dad forwarded me an email from him as he is finishing up his tour in Iraq. In August, he was orienting the new unit to his AO and introducing him to the partnered Iraqi’s. He should be returning to the States in August sometime by way of Kuwait. Christoph has moved to Arizona. He accepted an offer from Camp Decker and McKee, an international architectural, engineering and construction management firm. He will be working in their Phoenix, AZ, office. He and wife, Katie, are looking forward to their new adventures. Jeremy sent me a note after spending sometime in South Africa this summer. Jeremy along with John, VMI Professor Col. Thompson and another friend travelled to South Africa to catch a few soccer games during the World Cup. During their trip, they went on a safari, great white shark diving, did the world’s highest bungee jump and saw three soccer games including the USA-Slovenia match. Jeremy noted that Cape Town is a must visit. Jeremy is living in London and working for Bloomberg. John is in the midst of finishing his master’s this fall while still coaching for the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs. A.J. is now a winged Naval Aviator as of June 25th. AJ has since moved to Jacksonville, FL, to the fly the P3 Orion for the Navy. Congrats to A.J. on your accomplishments. Andrew


CLASS NOTES is at FOB Marez in Mosul, Iraq. In late October, the Field Artillery Battalion, where he was the 3rd ACR. They will be going to Kalzul, 20 he will be re-deploying as well. Nikolai is named the XO of the Headquarters Battery. Rob miles south of Baghdad. Phil is also heading living in Meridian, MS, with Matt. Nik is on commented that it’s not the easiest job and he off to Iraq in September with the 4th BCT, track to finish up Advanced Jet Training and in wonders each day if he’s still going to have a 1st CAV to Northern Iraq. Before everyone August, was scheduled to head to an aircraft job, tomorrow. Rob also passed along informadeployed, Rob, Alec, Joe, Phil, Dan and Dan all carrier for his first boat qualification. Nik hopes tion that Dan and Dan are headed to Iraq with went to Austin for the weekend. to be stationed at Oceana, VA, Lawton is deployed in Eastern when he’s done. Afghanistan with the 744 EOD Steve recently passed his CertiCompany out of Ft. Campbell. fied Public Accountant Exam and Currently, Lawton is a platoon is currently working for Argy leader and enjoying the scenic (a public accounting firm) in views. He noted that fortunately Tyson’s Corner, VA. Steve and IED’s have been scarce and his girlfriend spent some time they’ve been doing well as a unit. this summer in Aruba and had a Trey is playing for the Stockton wonderful time in the summer sun Ports of the Class-A Advanced and beautiful beaches. Cory is California League. As of August currently in Anchorage, AK and 15th, Trey had a 2.21 Earned Run stationed at Ft. Richardson with Average in 50 appearances, with a the Army. He’s been there since 3-1 recorded in 57 innings pitched. January and has been having a Trey is getting married on October great time! He will be deploying 10th, 2010. to Iraq in October for six months. Will is still in Sheffield, England, While in Alaska, he’s run into finishing up on his masters. He’ll Class of 2008: Attending a pre-deployment party in AusKip who recently deployed to be headed to Vandenberg AFB in tin, Texas, were, from left, Dan Boyd, Phil McCloskey, Joe Afghanistan, and James. September to be an engineer with Pickenpaugh, Rob Kelly and Dan McKeegan. Rob has been moved over to a space launch squadron. Will also

Class of 2008: The VMI contingent at Matt and Lauren (Haskey) Harrison’s wedding were, from left, Jordan Rich, Kevin Hill, Michael Clements, David Jacobs, the groom and bride, Brian Peeler, Hayden Cox ’10, Brett Leonard ’10, Jeremy Clement, Bobby Hawley and Shane Wilkinson ’11.



CLASS NOTES noted that both Joe and Clint are now engaged. Brett got married on May 29, 2010 in Bayville, NY, to his long time girlfriend, the former Miss Erika Breiding. Brett noted that Erika stuck with him through his VMI days for his sake. They honeymooned in the Bahamas and had an awesome time. Brett will deploy as the OIC of the Counter IED Targeting program from the National Guard Intelligence Center. He will deploy with the Army on Sept. 21, 2010. JT.. provided some much needed comic relief. He returned from Iraq on Aug. 2nd and headed to Eastern Europe to do some “sight” seeing. J.T. also sent me a picture with himself, Brian and Jonathon from Iraq. Enjoy your trip JT..! Branden will return from Afghanistan in the middle of September. He was working out of Mazar-E-Sharif while starting up a new Prime BEEF squadron. When he returns, he and Jessica Mason plan to marry on Nov. 6, 2010, in Panama City. Branden wanted to note that it’s free drinks for all Keydet’s in attendance. Someone please take him up on the offer. Dustin sent me a note about his annual Keydet Trip to the Florida Keys. Dustin as well as Ty and Dustin’s dad who is class of ’80 all got VMI tattoo’s on their backsides. Ty and Dustin got a tattoo of the Moe mascot they often sported at the Keydet Basketball games while Dustin’s pops got the VMI spi-

der. Sounds like an interesting trip! Katie is still in the Air Force and is in Fayetteville, NC. She noted that it’s “VMI Country” down here with Ft. Bragg. Since Katie emailed me, she PCS’ed to the Pentagon and she’s looking forward to seeing her BR’s in the area. As I was writing these notes, Matt emailed me as he just got back from Iraq where he saw J.T. They met up at Al Asad Air Base before Matt returned to the states. Matt sent a picture from one of his missions while in Iraq. Last but not least, Matt and the former Miss Lauren Haskey were married in the Outer Banks, NC, on July 31st. In attendance were Jordan, Michael, David, Brian, Jeremy, Bobby, Hayden, Brett and Shane. Congrats to Matt and Lauren. I’ve started working at HNTB in their Harrisburg, PA, office. We’ve been working on the Portal Bridge Capacity Enhancement since I started in late June. I started playing on the company softball team and in one game, competed against Matt, Alpha Company Commander (small world). I’ve also begun working for the Dauphin County Hazardous Materials Response Team which keeps me busy when I’m not visiting my girlfriend at Indiana University of Pennsylvania. Lauren and I made a trip this summer to see the Orioles play the Mariners in

Baltimore this summer, as well as the Phillies and the Rockies in Philadelphia. The summer has seemed to fly by since graduating from Penn State. I hope these notes find you well as you begin to enjoy the holiday season this winter. If you aren’t receiving emails from me, please send me your contact information. It’s an easy way for me to get information out quickly to all of you in times when the information is time sensitive like that with Dan. Enjoy the holidays with your family and please send me a note if you have a minute. Take care and God Bless!


Ian Williams

Editor’s Note: There were no class notes submitted from the class of 2009 for this issue.


Matthew Allen

Editor’s Note: There were no class notes submitted from the class of 2010 for this issue.

VMI’s 25 Most Senior Alumni According to the records of The VMI Alumni Association, the men listed below constitute the 25 senior alumni of the Institute. Please contact the Alumni Review if any errors are noted. William E. Cantrell ’26 Richard D. Schmitz ’31 Ernest C. Johnson ’29 Thomas M. Zeledon ’30 William B. Walshe ’32 Richard C.Wight Jr. ’30 Howard J. Bell ’33 William R. Landrum ’34 James Heine ’34 E. Lane Whitley ’34 Wayne C. Weaver ’33 Emmett J. Heerdt ’34 John D. Todd Jr. ’34

2010-Issue 4

Oct. 17, 1905 Feb. 24, 1908 May 19, 1908 Dec. 21, 1908 Nov. 30, 1909 May 26, 1910 Nov. 25, 1910 Dec. 3, 1910 Mar. 18, 1911 April 1, 1911 Dec. 6, 1911 Feb. 27, 1912 June 30, 1912

Richard H. McCormick ’34 Thomas St. John Arnold ’35 Alfred J. Snapp ’35 James E. Kirk ’36 Oscar E. Roberson ’38 Edwin T. Arnold ’35 James C. Sherman ’35 Gardner F. Goodwyn ’36 Randolph Tucker Jr. ’37 Robert W.W. Evans ’35 John A. Gialanella John H. Divine III ’36

Dec. 4, 1912 Sept. 8, 1913 Sept. 18, 1913 Oct. 25, 1913 Nov. 13, 1913 Feb. 7, 1914 Mar. 31, 1914 April 27, 1914 June 29, 1914 Aug. 7,1914 Aug. 28, 1914 Nov. 13, 1914



BIRTHS JAKLITSCH – A daughter, Calista Ann Laurel, to Daphne and Raymond F. Jaklitsch Jr. ’95 on July 20, 2010. ADAMS – A son, Jack Burgess, to Kelly and Joseph “Jay” B. Adams ’97 on Aug. 6, 2010. SEGRETI – A daughter, Margaret May, to Erin and Shawn T. Segreti ’00 on Dec. 30, 2009. WOOD – A daughter, Jacsyn Olivia, to Jacqueline and Justin G. Wood ’00 on July 1, 2010.

SKOOG – A son, Gavin Gunnar, to Andrea and Brett G. Skoog ’08 on Aug. 11, 2010.

MARRIAGES HADDOCK – Charlotte Anderson to C. Patrick Haddock ’00 on Sept. 4, 2010. RHODES – Genevieve McJunkin to Jeffrey P. Rhodes ’00 June 24, 2010. ZYDRON – Courtney Terry to Adam R. Zydron ’01 on May 22, 2010. BRYAN – Dana Henritze to Paul T. Bryan ’05 on June 26, 2010.

JOHNSON – A son, Connor James, to Lyndsay and Samuel A. Johnson ’05 on June 27, 2010.

DESHAZOR – Ashley Brunson to William K. DeShazor ’05 on June 19, 2010.

VIAR – A son, Caleb Daniel, to Sarah and Nicolas D. Viar ’05 on May 5, 2010.

SMITH – Maggie Frost to Jefferson D. Smith IV ’05 on July 24, 2010.


HARRISON – Lauren Haskey to Matthew C. Harrison ’08 on July 31, 2010. LUCAS – Erika Breiding to Brett J. Lucas ’08 on May 19, 2010

DEGREES Megan (Smith) Portavoce ’01 LL.M Law, Intellectual Property Centre d’Etudes Internationales de la Propriété Intellectuelle Strasbourg, France June 2010 Matthew J. Hendricks ’05 Education Old Dominion University Norfolk, VA May 2010



A Special Invitation to VMI Alumni From the Garden Club of Virginia and the Blue Ridge Garden Club

The Garden Club of Virginia and the Blue Ridge Garden Club Present

Virginia Military Institute: Houses, History and Honor Historic Garden Week in Lexington Saturday, April 23, 2011 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. Featuring: The Superintendent’s Quarters, The newly restored Maury House and 410 VMI Parade Special presentations at the George C. Marshall Museum will highlight both the Maury and Marshall years. Exhibits at Jackson Memorial Hall and VMI Museum will accent VMI’s early history and include the antique firearms special collection. Box lunches will be served in Moody Hall by prepaid reservations. Contact: Kathleen Vance For event information and online tickets, go to or contact Kathy Lamb at To order tickets, contact Catharine Gilliam at Tour proceeds help benefit restoration of Virginia’s historic gardens and landscapes.

VMI Superintendent Gen. J.H. Binford Peay III ’62, USA (Ret), and his wife, Pamela, have graciously offered the VMI Post to the Garden Club of Virginia and the Blue Ridge Garden Club for Historic Garden Week. On Saturday, April 23, 2010, in Lexington, “Virginia’s largest open house” will be held at VMI, benefiting the restoration of historic gardens and landscapes across Virginia. The garden club will work its magic with flowers in the superintendent’s quarters, in the newly restored Maury House and at 410 VMI Parade. The Peays’ home features their personal treasures, collected during a lifetime of service in the Unites States Army. Both the VMI Museum and the Marshall Museum will also be open for the tour. Special events will include presentations in the Pogue Auditorium on Matthew Fontaine Maury and George Catlett Marshall, class of 1901, and their VMI years. Speakers will be Col. Keith Gibson ’77, executive director of the VMI Museum; Col. Tom Davis ’64, professor emeritus of history; and Brian Shaw, director of the Marshall Museum. Come! Bring your visiting mother-in-law, your neighbor’s child who is considering VMI, and your children and grandchildren who don’t quite yet understand your devotion to this place. Bring architect friends who are interested in green preservation to the Maury House, a restoration funded by the VMI Foundation. Enjoy a box lunch on the porch at Moody Hall and refreshments in Memorial Garden. Remember once more how VMI remembers its own at the graves of the New Market Cadets, in Memorial Garden and at Jackson Memorial Hall. Tour the Marshall Museum and pay tribute to VMI’s most famous alumnus – “our man of the 20th Century” – at Marshall Arch, at his statue and walking through the yard of the new Marshall Hall. Visit the VMI Museum and see the world-class Henry M. Stewart ’35 antique firearms collection. Visit, too, the exhibit on the early years at VMI – including the Steinway piano Maury ordered for his home on the parade ground – and hear it played by a VMI wife, who, like Elie Maury, can “make it talk.” (The restoration of that piano was a gift from one of you.) Enter the Barracks through Jackson Arch and see a newly refurbished cadet room. This is our heritage. You have helped to build it and preserve it – now, come and help us pass it on.

Photo of VMI, circa 1847, courtesy VMI Archives.

2010-Issue 4





Class of 2015 William Cory Green Max Anthony McClain Matthew Joseph Remmie



Class of 2024 Brenton L. Underwood ’06 Col. Leslie H. Savage ’58, USA William K. Mizell ’62

Brother-in-law Grandfather Grandfather

Wallace Inge ’96 John Thomas Inge Colgan Christopher Martin Edward B. Martin ’57 William E. Reed II ’72 Class of 2024 William E. Reed II ’72 Benjamin Davis Reed Lt. Cmdr. Bryan L. Smith ’96, USN Samuel Ian Reed

Uncle Uncle Father

Nathan Warren Smith

Class of 2016 Eugene M. Sampey ’84 Emily Sampey Zachary Tecumseh Schuhart Arthur L. Schuhart ’84 Todd D. Toler ’90 Colby Todd Toler

Class of 2017 Kristen Warlitner


Class of 2025 Charles L. Downs III George Wyatt Inge Grace Ellen Inge Kelly Gail Martin

Tab Warlitner ’85


W. Reed Johnson ’53 William O. Seiferth ’87 Col. George F. Seiferth III ’82, USA Wallace Inge ’96


Class of 2026

Father Uncle Cousin

Hannah Marie Buchanan Ian Richard Carlisle Harrison Birdsong Inge Jacob Davis Smith

James J. Schaffer III ’77 Andranik Tsarukyan ’02 Charles D.M. Spears ’93 David V. Spears ’86 Joseph M. Spears III ’81 Joseph M. Spears Jr. ’56 Charles D.M. Spears ’93 David V. Spears ’86 Joseph M. Spears, III ’81 Joseph M. Spears Jr. ’56

Uncle Uncle Father Uncle Uncle Grandfather Father Uncle Uncle Grandfather

Class of 2027

W. Reed Johnson ’53 Mark D. Hagan ’71 James J. Schaffer III ’77 William O. Seiferth ’87 Col. George F. Seiferth III ’82, USA

Grandfather Father Father Father Uncle

James Harrison Duray Lily Scott Howle Calvin James Parsons

Ralph R. Hudson Jr. ’87 Wallace Inge ’96 Edward B. Martin ’57

Father Uncle Grandfather

Ryan Michael Weaver

Wallace Inge ’96 Mark D. Hagan ’71 Robert W. Hockley ’70 Edward B. Martin ’57 Michael L. Parish ’77

Uncle Father Grandfather Grandfather Father

Uncle Grandfather Father Father Father

Charles L. Downs Jr. ’94 Wallace Inge ’96 Wallace Inge ’96 Edward B. Martin ’57

Father Uncle Father Grandfather

Wallace Inge ’96 Charles R. Carlisle ’62 Wallace Inge ’96 Lt. Cmdr. Bryan L. Smith ’96, USN


Wallace Inge ’96


Charles L. Downs Jr. ’94


Warren C. Wagner ’70 William P. Johnson ’07

Grandfather Great-grandfather

Col. Paul H. Duray Jr. ’87, USA Wallace Inge ’96 Warren C. Wagner ’70 William P. Johnson ’07 Kevin M. Thomas ’98 Alexander J. Mitchell ’50B Matthew S. Mitchell ’02 Michael Weaver ’94 Curt Crowder ’94 Ray Crowder ’66

Father Uncle Grandfather Great-grandfather Father Grandfather Uncle Father Uncle Grandfather

P. Wesley Foster Jr. ’56 Wallace Inge ’96 William A. Murphy ’65 Michael T. Peacock ’94

Grandfather Father Grandfather Father

Steven L. Amato ’83 William B. Bott ’70 James A. Bott ’36 Charles B. Bott ’96 J. Wescott Bott ’99

Grandfather Grandfather Great-grandfather Uncle Father

Class of 2018 Meredith Fae Beaudry William O. Seiferth II Mark Wallace Williams Jr.

Father Uncle Father

Class of 2019 Kyle Joseph Scull Patrick Shahverian Joseph R.M. Spears

Lane M. Spears

Class of 2020 William Robert Beaudry Michael Downey Hagan II Casey Daniel Schaffer James A. Seiferth

Margaret Agnes Inge

Class of 2028 Arthur T. Downs

Class of 2029 Marshall Jeffrey Parsons

Class of 2030

Archer Henry Thomas Alexander James Trotter

Class of 2021 Stephen Daniel Hudson Jacqueline Owen Inge Sean Patrick Martin

Class of 2022 Kayla Grace Buchanan Benjamin Thomas Hagan Chloe Irene Hockley Kayla Marie Martin Mark Andrew Parish

Class of 2031 Bowman Chappell Foster Charles Thomas Inge Aidan Christopher Murphy Nicholas J. Peacock

Class of 2032 Class of 2023 Laura Marie Hagan


Mark D. Hagan ’71


Lucca Timothy Amato Carter Floyd Bott





Rawls H. Karnes Sampson Myron Mitchell Fitzgerald C. O’Neil Stephen Robert Orr V

2010-Issue 4



Class of 2032

Class of 2032 William Webb Conway William Patrick Creswick Alixandre Trent Donhauser Drew Peter Donhauser Athan Augustine Fritchley Xavier Vient Gurdak Sean David Kaliski


Wallace Inge ’96 William C. Creswick ’67 Michael T. Smither ’63 Michael T. Smither ’63 Vance D. Powell Jr. ’67 Donald L. Cummings ’65 David Kaliski ’64 Alan Kaliski ’69 Billy Karnes ’76 Andy Karnes ’05 Alexander J. Mitchell ’50B Matthew S. Mitchell ’02 John Cockey ’63 Stephen R. Orr III ’74

Uncle Grandfather Grandfather Grandfather Grandfather Grandfather Grandfather Great Uncle Grandfather Uncle Grandfather Uncle Grandfather Grandfather

James Henry Binford Peay V

Adria Lynn Pool Ethan Chris Powell Grace Marie Rowland James William Stewart Samuel James Taylor Kegan Lane Wamsley

Gen. J.H. Binford Peay III ’62 James H.B. Peay IV ’98 Ryan N. Peay ’02 Willard M. Hays ’51 J.H. Binford Peay Jr. ’24 1st Lt. Jonathan P. Pool ’07 Vance D. Powell Jr. ’67 Dwight C. Rowland ’72 Edward M. Seager ’64 Douglass A. Taylor ’67 Jacob H. Wamsley III ’82 Jacob J. Wamsley II ’51

Grandfather Father Uncle Grandfather Great-grandfather Father Grandfather Grandfather Grandfather Grandfather Grandfather Great-grandfather


TAPS TAPS John A. Chambliss Jr. ’31 John Alexander Chambliss Jr. ’31 of Chattanooga, Tennessee, died on June 8, 2010. He was 99. Chambliss matriculated from Lookout Mountain, Tennessee, attended VMI for one year, four months and 15 days. He was a Brother Rat of Charlie Dayhuff. Both came from Chattanooga. He later attended Southwestern in Memphis for two years and then earned a law degree at Cumberland University in Lebanon, Tennessee, graduating in summer 1932. He practiced in the law firm founded by his two grandfathers, continuing to come to his law office until his death. In World War II after entering the Navy as an apprentice seaman, he was promoted and commissioned and was a gunnery officer in the Navy in the South Pacific. He was discharged in January 1946, resuming law practice for the family firm, which is now named Chambliss, Bahner & Stophel. He was also a Brother Rat of Glover Johns,

who wrote The Pigeons of St. Lo and who led the American troops into West Berlin when Russia threatened to take over. Glover’s father, Glover S. Johns, class of 1908, and Chambliss’ father, John A. Chambliss Sr., were Brother Rats, as well. Chambliss is survived by his daughter, Ann Lacambra, and husband, José Maria, of Winter Park, Florida; his son, John A. Chambliss III of Chattanooga; daughter, Betsy Chambliss McLean, of Wenatchee, Washington; eight grandchildren and 16 great-grandchildren. He was predeceased by his wife, Bena McVea Chambliss.

William H. Cox ’39 William Henry Cox ’39 of Richmond, Virginia, died on May 14, 2010. He was 94. Cox matriculated from Suffolk, Virginia, and earned his bachelor of science degree in chemistry from VMI. He earned his doctor of medicine degree from the Medical College of Virginia.

He served in the U.S. Army during World War II as a captain in the Medical Corps from 1946-48. Cox practiced obstetrics and gynecology in Richmond for 30 years and during that time was chief of staff and head of the Obstetrics Department at Richmond Memorial Hospital. He also had privileges at Retreat for the Sick, St. Luke’s and Stuart Circle Hospital, where he delivered three generations of Richmond children. He was a member of Stephen’s Episcopal Church for over 50 years, a charter member of Suburban Sertoma Club and the Institute Society of VMI. He was also a former member of the Board of Maymont, The Country Club of Virginia and Deep Run Hunt Club. He was an avid horseman, fisherman and hunter. Cox is survived by three children, George Paul Cox, Nancy Cox Vaughan and her husband, Ernest, and Susan Cox Lane and her husband, Feldman; and five grandchildren. His wife, Doris Swain Cox, predeceased him.

J. Clyde Hooker Jr. ’42 Prominent businessman, leader in the furniture manufacturing industry, and a loyal VMI alumnus, J. Clyde Hooker, Jr.’42 died in his home in Henry County, Virginia on July 12, 2010. As a cadet, Hooker was the valedictorian of his class. He also was a member of the Hop & Floor Committee and the staffs of The Cadet and The Bomb and competed in wrestling and intramural athletics. Immediately after graduation, Hooker joined the U.S. Army and became an officer in the Field Artillery. He served in Europe with the renowned Third Army and served in three campaigns. He received the Bronze Star Medal and left the Army in 1946 in the grade of captain. Returning to his hometown of Martinsville, Virginia, Hooker joined Hooker Furniture, the company founded by his father, J. Clyde Hooker, Sr. in January 1925. His experience with the company went back to January 1925, when he, at four years old, had the honor of blowing the steam whistle that signaled the beginning of the company’s first workday. Hooker began work in the factory in order to acquaint himself with the manufacturing process and later moved to Hooker the company’s headquarters as an assistant sales manager. In 1956, he became the company’s sales manager, and, in 1960, he took over as the company’s president, a position he held until 2000. In the four decades in which Hooker led the company, its payroll grew from 375 to 2,000 employees, its annual sales expanded from $4.4 million to $250 million, and its annual net income increased from $175,000 to $15 million. The source of the company’s success was Hooker’s willingness to embrace new manufacturing techniques and to keep up with trends in office and home furniture. His company also was one of the first to import specialty furniture. Hooker was active in numerous trade organizations involving the


furniture industry. He was the President of the Southern Furniture Manufacturers Association (the precursor of the American Home Furnishings Alliance) and the Chairman of the Advisory Board of the Dallas Market Center. He received many industry-related honors, including the International Home Furnishings Representatives Association’s Pillar of the Industry Award in 1977 and induction into the American Furniture Hall of Fame in 1997. Active in the Boy Scouts of America and an Eagle Scout, he served as a Scoutmaster. For this work, he received the Distinguished Eagle Scout Award. In 2000, his hometown recognized his involvement there—to include, with his mother, Mabel Bassett Hooker, the establishment of a scholarship for Hooker Furniture employees and their families—by presenting him with the Key to the City of Martinsville. A long-time supporter of the Institute, Hooker was a trustee of the VMI Foundation from 1976 to 1991, during which time he served for two years as the National Chairman of the Alumni Annual Fund. He was a generous donor to the Institute, establishing two Jr. ’42 named funds: the J. Clyde Hooker, Jr. 1942 Scholarship for Merit in 2004 and an unrestricted endowment in 2002. He joined with his Brother Rats in support of the Class of 1942 Endowment (which provides unrestricted money to VMI) and the Class of 1942 Baseball Scholarship, and loyally participated in VMI Annual Giving effort, giving to the Foundation Fund, Keydet Club Scholarship Fund, and the Athletic Operations Fund. In recent years, he has given generously in support of Vision 2039. In 1993, the VMI Foundation Board of Trustees presented Hooker with its highest honor, the Distinguished Service Award. Hooker is survived by his wife, Katherine Sue Bridgforth Hooker (a.k.a., Kitty Sue), and his daughter, Katherine H. Boaz.


TAPS Donald J. Stroop ’39 Donald James Stroop ’39 of Cleveland, Ohio, died on June 22, 2010. He was 93. Stroop matriculated from Glenbrook, Connecticut, and graduated from VMI with a bachelor of science degree in civil engineering. He served in the U.S. Army during World War II from 1941-46 and was awarded the Bronze Star. During his time at VMI, he was on the Equestrian team for three years; the Cadet Staff and Rifle and Pistol Club for two years; and Officer of the Guard, Cross Country and wrestling team for one year. Stroop was a retired sales representative where he sold advertising space and also dealt in real estate. He is survived by his wife, Mildred Wager Stroop; two daughters, Louisa Oliver and husband Solomon, Elizabeth Stroop and partner Lu Stella; and three grandchildren. He was predeceased by his first wife, Margaret King Stroop.

Joseph L. Parrish Jr. ’41 Joseph Lamar Parrish Jr. of Austin, Texas, died on July 6, 2010. He was 90. Parrish matriculated from Old Hickory, Tennessee, and graduated from VMI with a bachelor of science degree in chemistry. While at VMI, he lettered in football and basketball and was class president. He went on to earn his master of business Parrish Jr. ’41 degree from Harvard University. He served in the U.S. Army during World War II in the Field Artillery from 1942-46. His battlefield commendations in his role as an intelligence, artillery and infantry officer included three Asiatic-Pacific Campaign ribbons for participation in the Philippine Island and New Guinea campaigns and amphibious assault in conjunction with the Luzon Campaign. Parrish was awarded the Bronze Star with an Oak Leaf Cluster for his meritorious actions in directing artillery fire during the battle in Luzon. He had a 37-year career with Tennessee Gas Transmission Company (Tenneco) and retired as executive vice president in 1984. Parrish is survived by his wife of 59 years, Grace Winter Parrish; children, Joanne P. Flynn, Joseph L. Parrish III and wife Jody, Jean Banks, William M. Parrish and wife Margaret, and Charles S. Parrish and wife

2010-Issue 4

Anne; and 13 grandchildren. He is survived by a cousin, William T. Wood ’54 who resides in Richmond, Virginia. Parrish was predeceased by his grandfather, William Morison Wood class of 1867, who fought in the Battle of New Market and died in 1943 and a cousin George A. Caldwell ’44 who died on May 18, 2010.

John M. Wray Jr. ’42 John Minor Wray ’42 of Bon Air, Virginia, died on May 6, 2010. He was 89. Wray matriculated from Richmond, Virginia, and graduated from VMI with a bachelor of science degree in civil engineering. He served in the U.S. Army during World War II in the Armored Division from 1942-46. Wray was an engineer for VDOT for 41 years before retiring. He is survived by his wife of 27 years, Rebecca Haas Wray; two children by his first wife, Anne-Marie Rhodes and husband Stuart, Markie Trent and husband Danny; stepchildren, Debbie Davis, John Haas Jr. and his wife, Nichole; 12 grandchildren and two great-grandchildren. He was predeceased by his first wife, Marie Rahm Wray.

John W. Litton ’43

Betsy L. Cadwell and husband Greg, Sallie L. Graham and husband Charles; and four grandchildren.

James A. Middleton ’43 James Arthur Middleton ’43 of Lake Forest Park, Washington, died on June 23, 2010. He was 87. He matriculated from Syracuse, New York, and earned a bachelor of science degree in civil engineering from VMI. Middleton served in the U.S. Marine Corps during World War II from 1943-46 attending radar and other engineering courses at Harvard and Johns Hopkins. He then went on to serve in the U.S.M.C. Reserve retiring as captain in 1957. He worked in Baltimore and Philadelphia at engineering firms and on to Los Angeles to work for Lockheed as an aeronautical engineer. In 1962, he moved with his family to Seattle, Washington, and worked for many years at Boeing, initially on the Minuteman III project and later for Boeing commercial Aviation. From 1965-84, he and his wife, Peg, published a monthly classical music and fine arts guide for the greater Seattle area, Soundings Northwest. Middleton is survived by his wife, Margaret H. Middleton; his children, Deborah Middleton, Janice Middleton, Peter Middleton and wife Sharalynne, Alan Middleton and wife Cheryl; and five grandchildren.

John Winfield Litton ’43 of Norton, Virginia, died on August 1, 2010. He was 89. Litton matriculated from Norton, Virginia, and graduated from VMI with a bachelor of Daniel M. Thornton Jr. ’43 science degree in civil engineering. Daniel McCarthy Thornton Jr. ’43 of VirHe served in the U.S. Army during World ginia Beach, Virginia, died on May 9, 2010. War II as a lieutenant from 1943-46. After He was 89. being severely wounded in action Thornton matriculated from following the invasion of Southern Norfolk, Virginia, and earned his France in 1944, he was awarded the bachelor of science degree in civil Purple Heart. engineering from VMI. He settled in Big Stone Gap He served in the U.S. Marine where he partnered with a friend, Corps in World War II and the William Thompson Jr., and foundKorean Police Action from 1943ed Thompson and Litton, a civil 47, and was awarded the Bronze engineering firm in Wise, Virginia. Star. During this time, he taught some Thornton was a former Norof the first engineering classes folk City Council member from offered at the then Clinch Valley 1966-70 and commissioner on Litton ’43 College and was their first baseball the Virginia Port Authority from coach, as well. 1970-82. He was a retired chairLitton was a lifetime member of the Norton man of Southgate Corp. United Methodist Church, having served He is survived by his wife, Nancy Edens his church as Sunday school teacher, choir Thornton; and sons, Daniel M. Thornton III, member and member of the administrative Bradley Thornton, Randolph Thornton; and board. He was a member of the National and two grandchildren. Virginia Society of Professional Engineers, the Consulting Engineers Council of Virginia and George A. Caldwell Jr. ’44 George Aiken Caldwell Jr. ’44 of Fairfax, the American Institute of Mining Engineers. He is survived by his wife of 60 years, Virginia, died peacefully at Fairfax Inova HosGeorgia Lee Strength Litton; two daughters, pital May 18, 2010, as the result of injuries


TAPS suffered in a fall at home. He was 87. Caldwell was born in Bristol, Virginia, on July 7, 1922, to George A. and Harriett Parrish Caldwell of Knoxville, TN. He grew up in Knoxville. He attended VMI for one year and went on to earn a bachelor of science degree from the U.S. Naval Academy in the accelerated class of 1946 on June 5, 1945. He was designated a Naval aviator in 1948. He served in WWII and the Korean War. He retired from the Navy in 1967 and was employed by IBM from which he retired in 1987. He was a communicant of St. John’s Episcopal Church in McLean, Virginia, where he had served as a vestryman and junior warden. Caldwell was a member of the Sons of the Revolution, the Military Order of the Cara-

bao, the Army-Navy Club and the Army Navy Country Club. He is survived by his wife of 55 years, Elizabeth Van Campen Caldwell; three daughters, Puller Lanigan and husband, Kevin, of Silver Springs, Maryland; Ms. Tyler Caldwell of Pembroke Pines, Florida; and Gibbs Burch and husband, Patrick, of Kennett Square, Pennsylvania; a grandson, Kevin Caldwell Lanigan, a sister-inlaw, Mrs. George L. Rosborough of Jacksonville, Florida, and a niece and two nephews.

Oliver Maggard Jr. ’45 Oliver Maggard Jr. ’45 of Noblesville, Indiana, died on March 28, 2010. He was 86. He matriculated from Larchmont, New York, and attended VMI for one year five months and nine days. He went on to graduate from Yale University.

Maggard served in the U.S. Air Force during World War II as an aviator from 1942-45. He was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross, Air Medal and a Purple Heart. He was a financial advisor with J.J.B. Hilliard, W.L. Lyons, LLC. Maggard is survived by his wife, Linda, and sons Oliver David Maggard, James Andrew Maggard and John Anderson Maggard; and a brother, John R. Maggard ’47 of New Rochelle, New York. He was predeceased by a brother Andrew M. Maggard ’49, who died Nov. 29, 2004; a cousin John R. McGiffert ’48, who died on Oct. 15, 2000; and an uncle, Stephen Y. McGiffert 1917, who died on Aug. 14, 1976.

Walter C. Plunkett Jr. ’45 Walter Carroll Plunkett Jr. ’45 of Ruckersville,

Frank A. Liddell Jr. ’49B Frank Austin Liddell Jr. passed away peacefully at home with his family at his side on June 27, 2010. He was 81. He matriculated from Houston, Texas, and was a member of the VMI Class of 1949B. As a cadet, he wrestled, sang in the Glee Club, and worked on the staffs of The Bomb, The Cadet, and the cadet humor magazine The Turnout. He was best known, however, for his accomplishments on VMI’s track team, which he captained during the 1948 season. In that season, he went undefeated as a two-miler and was the Southern Conference titleholder at that distance. He also set the conference record with a time of 9:33.2, the fastest time in the United States that year. In recognition of these accomplishments, he was inducted into the VMI Athletic Hall of Fame in 1973. The Frank A. Liddell Award in Track was established in 1981 to recognize those cadets who exemplify excellence and leadership in cross-country. After graduating with a Bachelor of Science degree in chemistry, Liddell worked as a research chemist with Monsanto Chemical and then obtained a Master of Arts degree from the University of Texas in 1952. He served in the United States Air Force from 1952 to 1955, where he advanced to the grade of first lieutenant. He was honorably discharged with a spinal cord injury he suffered in a plane crash on October 26, 1954. Liddell He entered law school within one year of the crash, and received an LLB from the University of Houston in 1958. He then joined his father’s law firm, where he later became a partner. He retired in 1973, but remained of counsel until 2009. He was also intensely involved in the Houston-area business community, and served as a director on numerous boards, including FTI, Inc., Houston Oil and Minerals, Seagull Pipeline, Southwest Chemical Services, and Texas Commerce Bank Retirement Investment Trust. Liddell gave generously and quietly to many charitable organizations, and served on the boards of many of those, including the Houston Ear Research Foundation, The Open Door Mission, and University of Texas Medical Branch (UTMB) at Galveston. Among his many charitable gifts, he established the Frank A. Liddell, Jr.


Centennial Fellowship in Chemical Engineering at the University of Texas and the Claire E. Hulsebosch, Ph.D. Chair in Neurological Research at UTMB at Galveston. Liddell remained devoted to VMI for his entire life. He served two terms on the Board of Visitors from 1978 through 1986 and served as the Board’s vice president in 1985. He was also a member of the VMI Foundation’s Board of Trustees from 1976 through 1982 and again from 1986 through 1990. During that tenure, he was responsible for the establishment of the Liddell School Tutorial Program, which helps incoming cadets adjust to the demands of the VMI system. Liddell was also a generous donor to his alma mater, granting numerous gifts to the Frank A. Liddell, Jr. ‘49B Scholarship Fund, the Track Enhancement Scholarship and Operational Fund, and the Beverly M. Read 1941 Institute Professorship in Arts and Sciences. VMI recognized him in 1996 by naming a room in the Preston Library in his honor. In 1997, the VMI Foundation presented him with its highest honor, the Distinguished Service Award, in recognition of his years of service to the foundation. Throughout his life, Liddell endured many hardships, including a broken back and forty surgeries. Told he would be dead by the age of 36, he outlived Jr. ’49B that prediction by 45 years. His will to survive was connected to his days at VMI. On the demands placed on its cadets, he liked to say, “VMI is a great place to be from.” He was grateful to have met those demands because they instilled in him a discipline of character without which he could never have lived so long. Or so well. His family remains grateful today. Frank A. Liddell, Jr. is preceded in death by his wife, Alice Staub Liddell. He is survived by his children Lise M. Liddell; Frank A. Liddell III, his wife Lee Ann, and their daughters Aubrie Lee Sellers and Anna Lise Liddell; Robert B. Liddell; and their mother, Lise P. Liddell, his first wife. He is also survived by Alice Liddell’s three children and five grandchildren; and his dearest love, Miss Shirley Ann Smith.


TAPS Virginia, died on July 4, 2010. He was 87. Plunkett matriculated from Norfolk, Virginia, and attended VMI for two years. He served in the U.S. Army as a sergeant during World War II from 1943-46. Plunkett was employed as a state tax advisor with Amvest before his retirement. He is survived by his wife of 58 years, Cordelia Michie Plunkett; three children, Walter C. Plunkett III, Cordelia Plunkett Wilson and Edmund Moss Plunkett; and six grandchildren.

In 1956, Boehm began his career in broadcasting sales and marketing working in an executive capacity for ABC, NBC and Adam Young. He retired as vice president and Western sales manager for the ABC Radio Network. Boehm is survived by his wife of over 31 years, Judith Brame Boehm; his son, Kenneth F. Boehm; stepchildren, Steve Boyer and Deborah Schneider; and two grandchildren. He was predeceased by a stepdaughter Teri Gonzales.

William E. Rance ’46

William L. Driskill Jr. ’50B

William Erwin Rance ’46 of Upper Arlington, Ohio, died on June 17, 2010. He was 85. Rance matriculated from Salem, Ohio, and graduated from VMI as a distinguished graduate with a bachelor of arts degree in liberal arts. He went on to earn his juris doctorate from Ohio State in 1951. He served in the U.S. Marine Corps during World War II from 1943-46. Rance was an attorney in private practice where he appeared regularly before the Interstate Commerce Commission. After working as corporate counsel for Eastern Motor Dispatch, he joined Theodore Boehm to found a firm which ultimately became Rance Pritchett Brantner Keller & Ely. He is survived by his wife of 52 years, Rosemary Kinney Rance; son, Brian D. Rance and wife Melinda; daughters, Susan L. Gliatis and husband Nick, Carol R. Ryan and husband Joe; and five grandchildren.

William Lawson Driskill Jr. ’50B of Lynchburg, Virginia, died on May 30, 2010. He was 81. Driskill matriculated from Lynchburg and graduated from VMI with a bachelor of science in pre-med. He later earned his master of science degree from Ohio State and his doctor of medicine degree from the Medical College of Virginia. He served in the U.S. Air Force during World War II from 1955-57 attaining the rank of captain. After returning to Ohio State, he became chief resident and completed his medical training in 1961. He practiced obstetrics and gynecology in Lynchburg between 1961 and 1992. He was a member of the Bedford County Hunt Club, St. John’s Episcopal Church and Lynchburg Academy of Medicine. He is survived by four children, Ann Lawson Driskill and husband Jarold Sole of Pasadena, California; Mary Elizabeth Driskill of Charlottesville, Virginia; Dr. Robert Leroy Driskill and wife Mary of Lynchburg, Virginia; William David Driskill and wife Elizabeth Meador of Norfolk, Virginia; and eight grandchildren. Driskill was predeceased by his wife, Nancy Whitehead Patterson Driskill. He was also predeceased by his first wife and mother of his children, Dr. Helen Jones Ellis, who died in December 2009.

Francis G. Boehm ’50B Francis George Boehm ’50B (Frank) of Sherwood, Oregon, died on July 7, 2010. He was 80. Boehm matriculated from Brooklyn, New York, and graduated from VMI with a bachelor of science degree in electrical engineering. He was in Band Company for four years, Glee Club for two years and the Monogram Club. He was the founder and captain of the first VMI Lacrosse team in 1948 and played for three years. Boehm ’50B Boehm served in the U.S. Army during the Korean Police Action in the 45th Infantry Division where he served as artillery commander from 1951-53. He was in the U.S. Army Reserve until 1964.

2010-Issue 4

James M. Strickland Jr. ’51 James Mell Strickland Jr. ’51 of Edenton, North Carolina, died on April 30, 2010. He was 81. Strickland matriculated from Arlington, Virginia, and graduated from VMI with a bachelor of science in civil engineering. He served his country in the U.S. Army during the Korean Police Action from 195153 as a civil engineer and was awarded the Bronze Star. Strickland was a former president of Hayes, Seay, Mattern and Mattern Architects and Civil Engineers.

He is survived by his three daughters, Susan S. Small and husband E. Morris Small Jr. of Edenton, North Carolina, Teresa S. Andrews and husband Mark A. Andrews of Charlottesville, Virginia, and Charlotte S. Cook and husband David L. Cook of Alexandria, Virginia; a former son-in-law David M. Cole ’74; and seven grandchildren. Strickland is also survived by a nephew, Alan H. Vicory Jr. ’74 of Villa Hills, Kentucky.

David G. Kestner ’53 David George Kestner ’53 of Tallahassee, Florida, died on June 18, 2010. He was 79. Kestner matriculated from Harrisonburg, Virginia, and graduated from VMI with a bachelor of science degree in civil engineering. He earned a master of science degree in engineering from the University of Missouri in 1969. He served in the U.S. Air Force during the Vietnam War, making the Air Force his career from 1954-75 retiring as a lieutenant colonel. He was awarded the Air Force Commendation Medal and the Bronze Star. Kestner is survived by his brother, Charles C. Kestner and wife Bonnie; stepchildren, Barbara Moyers, Elizabeth Mathias, Kathryn Lohr, John Beard and Steven Beard.

William W. Miller ’54, M.D. William Weaver Miller ’54, M.D. of Oberlin, Ohio, died on November 20, 2009. He was 76. Miller matriculated from Harrisonburg, Virginia, and was a distinguished graduate of VMI with a bachelor of arts degree in biology. He earned his doctor of medicine at the University of Pennsylvania. Miller received further training in pediatrics and pediatric cardiology at the Children’s Hospitals of Philadelphia and Boston. He served as a captain in the U.S. Army from 1959-62. As a pediatric cardiologist, he was a faculty member at Virginia Commonwealth University and later went on to private practice in Richmond, Virginia. In 1987, he established the journal Progress in Pediatric Cardiology. His life was centered on his family and friends, his practice and the great outdoors. Miller is survived by his wife of 51 years, Ruth Niemann Miller; a son Walter and daughter Rachel; and three grandchildren. He is also survived by a brother, George Tyler Miller Jr. ’53 of Wilmington, North Carolina. His father, George Tyler Miller Sr. 1923, died on July 24, 1988.

Robert J. Patane Sr. ’54 Robert John Patane Sr. ’54 of Daleville, Virginia, died on July 24, 2010. He was 77.


TAPS Patane matriculated from Great Neck, New York, and graduated from VMI with a bachelor of science degree in chemistry. He served in the U.S. Marine Corps as a first lieutenant from 1955-57. Patane was employed by General Electric Corporation and retired after many years of service. He is survived by his wife of 54 years, Jeanetta Bishop Patane; daughters, Barbara P. Jannah and husband Shaker, Patti P. Keith and husband Dean; son, Robert J. Patane Jr. and wife Lynne; and seven grandchildren. His brother, John William Patane ’59, of Moneta, Virginia, and his wife, Christine, also survive him.

Frank C. Wilson ’56 Frank “Fritz” Carroll Wilson ’56 of Boerne, Texas, died on April 26, 2010. He was 75. Wilson matriculated from Ft. Worth, Texas, and earned a bachelor of arts degree in biology from VMI. He went on to earn his doctor of medicine degree from Baylor University in 1960. He served in the U.S. Army as a captain in the Medical Corps from 1961-65 and was awarded the Army Commendation Medal. In 1953 while a cadet at VMI, the Corps was chosen to march in the Inaugural Parade for President Eisenhower. After he joined the Army, he was stationed in Munich, Germany, where he met his wife, Dorothea Dahlem. When he moved back to the states in 1965, he began his eminent career in the field of radiology. In San Antonio, he joined M&S X-Ray. He was there from 197292. As many of his noted accomplishments, Wilson was the first person to conduct a CAT SCAN on himself and then subsequently read the results. He retired in 2000. Wilson is survived by his wife of 45 years, “Dorle” Wilson; son, Patrick Wilson and wife Leanne; daughters, Cheryl Brayton and husband Robert, Tina Wilson, Vicky Steubing and husband Brady; and nine grandchildren.

Lawrence J. McCabe ’58 Lawrence John McCabe ’58 of Clairsville, Ohio, died on April 30, 2010. He was 73. McCabe matriculated from Wheeling, West Virginia, and attended VMI for two years on a football scholarship. He was the owner of Yankee Doodle Antiques, McCabe Dry Cleaning and A-Z Building Maintenance Company. McCabe is survived by his wife, Sharon Kurucz McCabe, and his four children; Kyle and fiancé Samantha Worwa of St. Clairsville; Kelle McCabe Tansmore and husband Milford of Columbus, Ohio; Jean Marie McCabe-Petri and husband Randy of Wheeling; Beverly McCabe of Wheeling; nine grandchildren and six great-grandchildren.


George D. MacMillan Jr. ’60 George Duncan MacMillan ’60 of Mt. Airy, Maryland, died on May 28, 2010. He was 71. MacMillan matriculated from Metuchen, New Jersey, and graduated from VMI with a bachelor of arts degree in English. He is survived by his wife of 43 years, Rosemarie Sitarik MacMillan; children Jaqui MacMillan and Brian MacMillan. He was predeceased by a son John MacMillan who died in 1987.

Joseph A. Ronan ’60 Joseph Anthony Ronan ’60 of Altoona, Pennsylvania, died on May 14, 2010. He was 74. He matriculated from Altoona, Pennsylvania, and attended VMI for one month and 10 days. Ronan is survived by his wife, Nancy LaBriola Ronan; four children and seven grandchildren.

George R. Aylor Jr. ’61 George Russell Aylor Jr. ’61 of Culpeper, Virginia, died on June 4, 2010. He was 70. Aylor matriculated from Fairfax County, Virginia, and earned a bachelor of arts degree in biology from VMI. He earned his doctor of dental science degree from the Medical College of Virginia. Aylor served in the U.S. Army as a captain in the Dental Corps. He started his dental practice in 1966 in Culpeper continuing his work for over 45 years where his son joined him in that practice 10 years ago. A dedicated member of the Culpeper United Methodist Church, he enjoyed serving his community. He was a founding member of the Culpeper County Planning Commission serving as chairman since 1989. His memberships included the Culpeper Foundation Board, past president of Culpeper Community Concert, past member of the Culpeper Hospital Board, Jefferson National Bank Board of Directors, the Lions Club, and State Board of Directors for the American Cancer Society. As an avid enthusiast of history and “student of the Civil War,” he was a member of the Brandy Station Foundation and the Civil War Preservation Trust. In 2005, he was proudly named a Culpeper Colonel for his outstanding community service. Aylor is survived by his wife of 46 years, Page Bolick Aylor, his children, Katherine Page Aylor of Glen Allen, Virginia, and Dr. Scott Andrews Aylor and his wife, Danielle, of Culpeper; and a cousin Joseph L. Weakley ’62 of Luray, Virginia

Kenneth G. Ederle ’61 Kenneth George Ederle ’61 of Bayport, New York, died on June 7, 2010. He was 70.

Ederle matriculated from Jamaica, New York, and graduated from VMI with a bachelor of arts degree in biology. He earned his master’s of science degree from St. John’s University and his doctorate from Arizona State University. During Ederle’s four years at VMI 1985-61), he was a competitive swimmer coached by Charlie Arnold, winning the Southern Conference all four years and the Virginia Big 6 in three of the four. Coach Arnold recruited Ederle. He was the nephew of Gertrude Ederle of English Channel fame, and her genes appear to have surfaced in Ederle. During his four years at VMI, he set 12 Southern Conference, Big six or VMI records in seven events, as well as many pool records at away venues. In 1958, Ederle went to the NCAA Regionals at Yale, the only VMI swimmer to do so. He did well but did not qualify for the Nationals. That same year he was named the Outstanding Swimmer at the Southern Conference meet (there were no All Conference honors at that time). The 1961 Bomb described him as “the most versatile swimmer in VMI history.” This was simple recognition of Ederle’s amazing record. He is survived by his wife, Mary Holahan Ederle; three sons, Christopher Ederle, Brendan Ederle and Justin Ederle; and a daughter Meghan Ederle.

Michael L. Cantrell ’62 Michael Lee Cantrell ’62 “Mickey” of Rocky Mount, Virginia, died on May 24, 2010. He was 70. Cantrell matriculated from Pound, Virginia, and attended VMI for one year. He went on to earn a bachelor of arts degree from Randolph Macon College. After graduating from Randolph Macon, he was the Clerk of Circuit Court of Wise County and later served as Assistant to Commissioner of Revenue. He moved back to Rocky Mount in the 1980s where he owned and operated a convenience market until his retirement. Cantrell was a member of the Rocky Mount Christian Church where he sang in the choir. His devotion to family and friends, kindness and cheerfulness remained the same during his burden with Alzheimer’s. He is survived by his son, Michael Lee Cantrell, and his daughter, Chesten Cantrell, both of Rocky Mount; two sisters, Frances Cantrell Roberson and Lena Cantrell McNicholas, both of Charlottesville, Virginia. Cantrell was predeceased by his brothers Robert and David Cantrell.

Michael S. Smith ’63 Michael Shenberger Smith ’63 of Largo,


TAPS Florida, died on July 24, 2010. He was 69. Smith matriculated from York, Pennsylvania, and attended VMI for one year four months and 15 days. He was an avid golfer and worked with several sports promotional organizations until his retirement in 2006. Smith is survived by two sons and two daughters.

Charles W. Besenfelder ’68 Charles William Besenfelder ’68 of Midlothian, Virginia, died on July 9, 2010. He was 64. Besenfelder matriculated from Richmond, Virginia, and graduated from VMI with a bachelor of arts degree in liberal arts. He earned his master’s in business administration from the Virginia Commonwealth University. He served in the U.S. Army as a first lieutenant in the Air Defense Artillery from 1969-71. He is survived by his wife, Nancy Hines Besenfelfer; daughters Catherine B. McConnell and husband Jimmy, Elizabeth B. Baker and husband David, Ann Meade Trahan and husband Francois; and son C. Taylor Besenfelder; and six grandchildren.

William R. Blandford Jr. ’69 William Randolph Blandford Jr. ’69 of Powhatan, Virginia, died on July 13, 2010. He was 63. Blandford matriculated from Powhatan, Virginia, and graduated with a bachelor of arts degree in history from VMI. He earned both his master’s of commerce and his juris doctorate degree from the University of Richmond. He served in the U.S. Marine Corps from 1969-72 including a tour in Vietnam. He continued in the USMCR and attained the rank of captain. Blandford was an attorney for the firm Blandford, Carrico & Newlon, P.C. He is survived by his wife, Elizabeth Hurd Blandford, and two daughters Claire Elizabeth and Merritt Randolph Blandford.

Thurman S. Deyerle III ’76

Deyerle III ’76 2010-Issue 4

Thurman Shaver “Chip” Deyerle III ’76 of Roanoke, Virginia, died on July 23, 2010. He was 56. Deyerle matriculated from Roanoke, Virginia, and graduated from VMI with a bachelor of science degree in civil engineering. He earned

his master of science degree from Virginia Commonwealth University in 1985. He was the owner and president of Greenscape Systems and was a member of Second Presbyterian Church in Roanoke. Deyerle spent most of his adult life in Richmond, Virginia, where he was president of Manson & Utley, and regional manager of W.M. Jordan. He is survived by his parents, Thurman S. “Buck” Deyerle Jr. and LeCompte Glenn Deyerle, and his sister, Whitney Deyerle, all of Roanoke, Virginia. He leaves behind three children, T. Shaver Deyerle IV, Lauren Hollis Deyerle and Katherine Elizabeth Deyerle from his former marriage to June W. Deyerle McPherson. Deyerle was the third in his family to attend VMI. The first, Charles Peter Deyerle, was one among the first class to graduate from the Institute in 1842 and the first career officer to die in service to his country. Charles Peter Deyerle’s brother, Madison, was a member of VMI class of 1860. (An article about this legacy in relation to Chip Deyerle appeared in the 2010 – Issue 2 VMI Alumni Review on pages 13-14.)

Joe O. Simas III ’79 Joe Olivera Simas III ’79 of Dunn Loring, Virginia, died on July 9, 2007. He was 49. Simas matriculated from Virginia Beach, Virginia, and graduated with a bachelor of science degree in electrical engineering from VMI. Simas was a systems’ engineer for military defense firms throughout his career. He is survived by his wife, Karen Kewer Simas, and daughter Catherine Rose Simas; his mother, Laura Waterman Wittstock and step-father Lloyd C. Wittstock; brothers, James O. Simas and wife Deb; Arthur W. Simas and wife Rhodora; sisters, Tedi Marie Grey Owl and Rose Marie Simas.

Justin B. Howe ’85 Justin B. Howe ’85 died on May 26, 2010. He was 48. Howe matriculated from Bluefield, Virginia. No additional information was provided.

Andrew P. DeMaio ’88 Andrew Paul DeMaio ’88 of Virginia Beach, Virginia, died on June 14, 2010. He was 44. DeMaio matriculated from Virginia Beach, Virginia, and graduated from VMI with a bachelor of arts degree in English. He was a lieutenant in the Army Reserve and a pharmaceutical representative for Bristol Meyers Squib in Charlottesville, Virginia, prior to his illness. DeMaio was a member of the Old North Church in Boston for the past seven years, residing in the North End and Quincy, Mas-

sachusetts. He is survived by his mother, Eleanore Kennedy DeMaio of Quincy, and three brothers, Mark, Neil and wife Jennifer of Virginia Beach, and Jonathan DeMaio of Jacksonville, Florida. He also leaves behind three sisters, Jamie Van Bergen and husband Peter of Williamsburg, Nancy Whitehurst and husband Craig and Robin DeMaio of Virginia Beach.

Patrick S. Coyle ’00 Patrick Shawn Coyle ’00 of Chester, Virginia, died on July 24, 2010. He was 32. Coyle matriculated from Virginia Beach, Virginia, and graduated with a bachelor of arts degree in English from VMI. He was a captain in the U.S. Army and served in Operation Iraqi Freedom where he was awarded the Bronze Star. Coyle is survived by his wife, Leslie Coyle, and daughter Hayleigh; parents, Margaret and Ralph Coyle Jr.; sisters, Mary Coyle, Geneva Gamell and Catherine Weissinger.

Brian R. McGuire Jr. ’07 Brian Robert McGuire Jr. ’07 of Brightwaters, New York, died on June 26, 2010. He was 25. McGuire matriculated from Brightwaters, New York, and graduated with a bachelor of arts degree in International Studies from VMI. He is survived by his parents, Brian Robert and Nina McGuire; brother Kyle and sister Kara McGuire.

Death in the VMI Family Ronald E. Chandler Machinist for Mechanical Engineering Ronald Eugene Chandler, of Staunton, Virginia, died on May 14, 2010. He was 55. Chandler was a machinist in the Mechanical Engineering Department at VMI where he was considered a valued employee. He was known to assist cadets with their projects and various related skills to aid them in their study of mechanical engineering. He had been employed in that department since 2004. Chandler is survived by his mother residing in Swoope, Virginia; two sons, Jerred B. Chandler and wife Ashley of Wise, Virginia, and Tracy H. Chandler of Radford, Virginia; two brothers, Gary M. Chandler of Swoope and Nolen Chandler of Staunton, Virginia; two granddaughters, Madison E. and Emma K. Chandler; and his fiancée, Julie A. Thomas.



Randolph M. Blanks ’67 4773 Charter Ct. Woodbridge, VA 22192

First Vice President Robert A. Heely ’69 507 Westover Ave. Norfolk, VA 23507

Second Vice President

Edgar James T. Perrow ’96 PO Box 3133 Lynchburg, VA 24503-0133

The VMI Foundation, Inc.

Executive Vice President

Chief Executive Officer


Brian S. Crockett

Walter C. Perrin II ’62

Adam C. Volant ’88 P.O. Box 932 Lexington, VA 24450

The VMI Keydet Club, Inc. President

Chief Executive Officer

Charles F. Plageman ’90


Gregory M. Cavallaro ’84

Thomas W. Davis ’64

Immediate Past President

Richmond P. Lykins Jr. ’73 1882 Elmhurst Dr. Germantown, TN 38138

Directors at Large

Terms Expire June 30, 2012 Bland Massie ’77 Heidi Nagel ’02

Terms Expire June 30, 2011 Kenneth Herbert ‘81 Dallas B. Clark ‘99

Terms Expire June 30, 2013 Jamel Lynch Jr. ’94 Michael Soares ’75

Region/ Director

Chapter Name

Chapter President

President’s E-mail

Chapter Representative

Russell Shun Takata ’74 Matthew R. Hemenez ’90 Todd E. Arris ’87 James R. Farmer ’68 Thomas R. Clark III ’73 Jay C. Wegrzyn ’66 Andre J. Gibson ’78 Trent L. Boggs ’83 Joseph S. Howard III ’97 Kenneth S. Krynski ’89

Russell Shun Takata ’74 Raphael S. Barsamian ’89 Todd E. Arris ’87 James R. Farmer ’68 William V. Trumpore ’89 Nathaniel P. Ward IV ’65 Peter H. Lyons ’54 Marcus Bruce Paine ’81 Thomas D. Kelly ’50B John D. Christie ’59

San Antonio Centex Chicago Kansas City, Missouri North TX - Dallas Rio Grande SE TX - Houston Southwest Ohio St. Louis Detroit Little Rock Bluegrass Third Coast (Corpus Christi) Oklahoma

Robert R. Costigan ’70 Stephen J. Barcik III ’85 Jeffrey T. Golden ’99 Jeffrey D. Vordermark ’79 Timothy S. Feagans ’90 Alexander E. Woelper ’80 Joseph J. Leonard Jr. ’83 Michael A. Demers ’80 Harry W. Gore Jr. ’72 David C. Hagemann ’80 James F. Dittrich ’76 Gregory G. McDearmon ’99 Walter J. Kleine ’63 Hamel B. Reinmiller ’98

Jimmie V. Thurmond ’56 Jeffrey L. Minch ’73 Donald A. Noschese Jr. ’92 Todd J. Jacobs ’90

Greater Rhode Island New England NY City - Long Island North Jersey

Patrick L. McGuire ’85 Patrick J. Griffin ’80 Robert A. Munno ’81

Patrick L. McGuire ’85 John W. Wainwright III ’82 John R. Gibney Jr. ’80

Baltimore Central Keystone Delaware Valley Western PA - Pittsburgh

Thomas M. Wirth ’98 Duane E. Williams ’66 Frederick J. Killmeyer IV ’95 Allan R. Berenbrok ’80

Thomas J. Hickey Jr. ’68 Lester C. Martin ’68 Frederick J. Killmeyer IV ’95 Robert A. Lane ’75

Augusta Appalachian Atlanta Coastal GA - South Carolina Midsouth Middle TN - Nashville

Terence L. Bowers ’68 Thomas N. Daniel Jr. ’60 Charles C. Schoen IV ’86 John R. Savage ’74 Richmond P. Lykins Jr. ’73 William E. Kirby III ’96

Raymond R. Lawson ’81 Campbell C. Hyatt III ’65 Charles C. Schoen IV ’86 John R. Savage ’74 Richmond P. Lykins Jr. ’73 Charles S. Sanger ’82

Hawaii Greater Los Angeles Bob Clingenpeel ’69 Northern California Pacific Northwest bclingenpeel1@ Rocky Mountain San Diego Inland Empire Chapter Alaska Arizona Las Vegas

Region I Far West

Region II Midwest

Fred Lehman ’91


Region III Northeast

Felix Wolkowitz ’75 fwolkowitz@

Region IV Mid Atlantic

Grover Outland ’81 outland@

Region V Southeast

Guy Conte ’75 guyconte@


Walter E. Woelper Sr. ’42 Steven P. Weiss ’86 Michael A. Demers ’80 Robert C. Polk ’61 Mark A. Benvenuto ’83 Hugh R. Hill ’85 M. Douglass Payne ’73 David R. Yockel Jr. ’90



Chapter Name

Chapter President

President’s E-mail

Chapter Representative

Club of the Triad Cape Fear Central NC - Raleigh Charlotte Camp Lejeune/Crystal Coast

Benjamin A. Booth ’03 Charles L. Toomey ’74 Michael J. Tutor ’96 Michael S. Anderson ’88 Stephen L. Skakandy ’01 (C) John Moder ’98 (AD)

Charles L. Ramsburg ’66 Charles L. Toomey ’74 Jonathan D. Atkins ’98 James A. Sharp ’93

Jerome M. Brinkley ’84

Birmingham Central Florida Mobile NE Florida - Jacksonville Southern Florida Tennessee Valley West Coast FL - Tampa Southwest Florida-Fort Meyer Greater New Orleans Mississippi

William H. Cather Jr. ’65 James G. Joustra Jr. ’76 Charles M. Rogers IV ’83 Michael T. Fellows ’95 John A. Weekes Jr. ’97 Herbert U. Fluhler ’77 Larry L. Fluty ’78 Bradford T. Herrell ’01 Rhys D. Williams ’07 P. Wells Griffith III ’05

William H. Cather Jr. ’65

New River Valley Lynchburg Roanoke William A. Madison ’90 Christopher M. Boswell ’00 Christopher D. Copenhaver ’99

William A. Madison ’90 John T. McCarthy ’87 J. Patrick Henderson ’99

N. Shenandoah Valley Chapter Charlottesville Blue Ridge Rockbridge County Allegheny Highlands Stonewall Jackson

W. Douglas Thomas ’65 James E. Duncan ’98 G. Wayne Eastham ’76 Thomas E. Jenks III ’67 T. Troy Barbour ’89 Roger A. Jarrell II ’91

Kevin J. Callanan ’78 Mark H. Bryant ’77 R. Edward Duncan ’60 Lewis V. Graybill ’62 Harrison L. Fridley Jr. ’61 Jason K. Gruse ’97

Eastern Shore

Thomas F. Wilson ’80

Norfolk Peninsula Virginia Beach Western Tidewater

Robert W. Leatherbury ’80 David G. Tyler IV ’86 Joshua P. Priest ’80 Edward M. Plucinski ’86 Gary J. Haste ’77 John L. Rowe Jr. ’66

George C. Marshall Potomac River

Douglas B. Warner ’03 Thomas A. Brashears ’95 thomasbrashears@roadrunner. com

G. Anthony Esteve ’00

Richmond Tri Cities

Adam N. Britt ’03 William H. Talley IV ’77

Samuel N. Stocks ’90 Augustus Robbins III ’47

Rappahannock Eric Nost ’79

Fredericksburg - Quantico Rappahannock Williamsburg Southside

Carl J. DeBernard Jr. ’94 Richard A. Duke ’90 Peter J. Kokolis ’96 George D. Dyer ’66

R. C. Thompson III ’74 Robert B. Powell ’63 John J. Kokolis ’96

Region XIV Pacific Rim

Thailand Taiwan

Vaipot Srinual ’72 Ching-Pu Chen ’85



Steven G. Cade ’87

Region VI Carolinas

Lane Toomey ’74 toomeyl@

Palmetto, South Carolina Coastal Carolina, SC

Region VII Deep South Jim Joustra ’76 Jim.Joustra@

Region VIII Southwest VA Turner Perrow ’96


Region IX Shenandoah Valley Ted Jenks ’67 tedjenks@

Karl L. Klinar ’54 Donald P. DeLuca ’62

John H. Friend III ’82 Grafton D. Addison III ’82 Christopher R. Jones ’72 Raymond J. Pietruszka ’77 Andrew M. Neff ’79 Brett R. Martin ’00

Region X Hampton Roads Asa Page III ’79 Douglas Burdett ’82 douglasburdett@

Region XI Metro D.C.

Sean Boyle ’91

Steve Nakazawa ’ 03

James A. Parsons ’80 David J. Trenholm ’70 H. Ali Mahan ’80 Oliver D. Creekmore ’66

Region XII Central VA

Hilbert Wilkinson III ’94 vmirichmondnetwork

Samuel Stocks ’90


Region XIII

2010-Issue 4

Vaipot Srinual ’72 Ching-Pu Chen ’85


ALUMNI NEWS ALUMNI NEWS In April 2010, the American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG) presented Robert W. (Bob) Allen ’45 with a 2010 Special Award during the organization’s annual meeting in New Orleans. The citation presented to Allen recognized him for being a “gentleman, mentor, motivator, visionary and consummate professional geologist” who shared his “untiring passion for geology with people of all walks of life.”

received the 2010 George D. Aiken Award for his achievements in the rural electric power industry. The Aiken Award recognizes individuals who exemplify the ideals and practices of George D. Aiken, a Vermont native, governor and U.S. Senator for 34 years. Aiken was instrumental in the conception and implementation of Gosney ’67 the Rural Electrification Administration Cal Poly Pomona which President Franklin D. Roosevelt University in Los signed into law on May 11, 1935. Angeles County, Gosney has been working for electric coCalifornia, honored operatives since 1977, beginning his career D r. A n d re w J . at Prince William Electric Cooperative in Thacker ’61 with Virginia. In 1983, he was hired by Norththe first-ever “Leg- ern Virginia Electric Cooperative and then ends of IBM” title. moved north to New Hampshire Electric The Legends of Cooperative (NHEC) in 1992, where he IBM title was cre- has been employed for 18 years. ated to honor outAt the time of this writing, he serves as Robert W. Allen ’45, left, receiving a “Special Award” from standing academic executive vice president of Strategy and Dr. John Lorenz, president of the American Association advisors at Cal Poly Governmental Relations at NHEC. Prior to of Petroleum Geologists, on April 11, 2010. Pomona. The IBM this position, he was director of operations program has pro- and engineering; vice president of energy Allen was in the petroleum industry for duced CEOs, political and community solutions and vice president of member 57 years, and according to the citation, leaders, and men and women who have solutions; and chief operating officer. created a legacy that will be in place for impacted society in meaningful ways, acGosney was also recently honored by generations to come. cording to an April 2010 Cal Poly College the Northeast Public Power Association Allen matriculated from Oklahoma City, of Business Administration press release. (NEPPA) with a Distinguished Service Oklahoma, and attended VMI for two Prior to this retirement from his academic Award for his invaluable contributions to years. He graduated from the University career, Thacker worked as an assistant pro- the NEPPA Legislative Services Program of Oklahoma with degrees in zoology and fessor at the University of Houston, as well on behalf of NHEC. geology. He moved to Ardmore, Oklahoma, as working with the Cal Poly In his community, Gosney in 1954 when he was employed by Conti- Pomona University for over 20 serves as chair of the Grafton nental Oil Company. years in the Department of InCounty Economic Development ternational Business and MarketCouncil and past chair of the The artwork of Frank C. Norvell ’58 is ing. A highly respected professor, Plymouth Planning Board. He exhibited at Uptown Gallery (Crossroads Thacker was honored with the was recently elected to the Town Art Center) and The Visual Art Studio, both title professor emeritus from Cal of Plymouth’s Board of Selectin Richmond, Virginia, as well as the Tides Poly Pomona University. men. He is a 2001 Leadership Inn J’s Gallery in Irvington, Virginia. Thacker matriculated from New Hampshire Associate. His artwork is also on display in private Richmond, Virginia, and graduGosney matriculated from and corporate collections in California, ated with a bachelor’s degree in Alexandria, Virginia, and graduThacker ’61 Maine and also regular one-person shows chemistry. He earned his masated from VMI with a bachelor’s throughout Richmond. ter’s and doctorate of education degree in electrical engineering. On his Web site, Norvell states, “I use degrees from the University of Houston in my engineering background to lay out my 1970 and 1977, respectively. Cyrus A. Dolph IV ’70 was recognized painting design for architectural and landin the 2010 edition of Virginia Super scape works to ensure I get the necessary W. Raymond (Ray) Gosney ’67 has Lawyers®. 156

perspective and depth.” Norvell paints from photographs taken while traveling in Europe and the United States. He also develops still life paintings from items that were collected during his travels. Norvell matriculated from Alexandria, Virginia, and graduated from VMI with a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering. He earned a master’s degree from University of Utah. For Norvell’s blog, visit:


ALUMNI NEWS During his more than 35 years in practice, Dolph has represented large and small companies, foundations, non-profits, individuals and financial institutions. He advises clients in a variety of business transactions and in the planning and administration of estates, foundations and trusts. Dolph is AV® rated, Martindale-Hubbell’s highest peer-reviewed rating for legal ability and ethical standards. This is the third year in a row that Dolph has been selected as a Virginia Super Lawyer. Dolph matriculated from North Post Office, Virginia, and graduated from VMI with a bachelor’s degree in English. In 1973, he received his juris doctorate degree from T.C. Williams School of Law, part of University of Richmond in Virginia, and in 1977, he attained his master of law degree from Marshall-Wythe Law School at the College of William & Mary in Virginia.

Thomas C. Jones ’69 and wife Elizabeth completed the Ironman in Cozumel, Mexico, in 14 hours and 40 minutes. Jones is a member of the Keydet Club Board.

Alan I. Tashima ’71 has been promoted to vice president, Intelligence Community (IC) programs of NJVC®, one of the largest information technology (IT) solutions providers supporting the U.S. Department of Defense. In this new position, Tashima is responsible for the company’s IC programs. Previ2010-Issue 4

ously, he was a senior associate with Booz Allen Hamilton where he led efforts to support the engineering systems of the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency’s Acquisition Directorate, particularly in relation to delivering components of the National System for Geospatial Intelligence. Tashima matriculated from Honolulu, Hawaii, and graduated from VMI with a bachelor’s degree in biology. In 1983, he earned a master’s degree from Central Michigan University.

Georgia in Augusta. As of this writing, he has an appointment as a clinical associate professor at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville. He has published over 25 research articles in professional referred journals and is active with both local and national lecture presentations. He has been honored by Dentistry Today as one of the Top Leaders in Dental Continuing Education in America for four years in a row. Recently, he has been invited to be a fellow in the International College of Dentists. John D. Sterrett ’73, M.D., received Sterrett matriculated from Woodbridge, The 2010 Fellowship Award for Dis- Connecticut, and attended VMI for two tinguished Service from the Tennessee years. He earned his bachelor’s degree Dental Association (TDA), from William & Mary in 1973. recognizing his many years of He graduated from the Universervice to the dental profession. sity of Tennessee, School of This is the highest award the Dentistry, in 1976 and received TDA presents. his certificate in periodontics Sterrett is a periodontist, spefrom Dalhousie University in cializing in the diagnosis and Canada in 1983. He earned a treatment of gum disease, with master of science degree in odadditional expertise in implant ontology from the Department and cosmetic dentistry. of Periodontology, Goteborg Sterrett has over 25 years University in Sweden and is Sterrett ’73 teaching experience, serving also a diplomate of the Amerias division head and acting director of can Board of Periodontology. the Post Graduate Program at Dalhousie Sterrett maintains a successful private University in Halifax, Nova Scotia, and as- practice with offices in both Knoxville sociate professor at the Medical College of and Maryville, Tennessee. R. Marshall Pinkard ’72, shown left with a Kenyan boy, traveled with a mission team from First Presbyterian Church (Norfolk, Virginia) to Nazareth Hospital, north of Nairobi, Kenya. Nazareth is a 220-bed mission hospital where medical treatment and education is given to HIV-positive adults and children. While there, Pinkard participated in patient counseling, doctors’ rounds, pharmacy duties and in-home visits to AIDS patients. He was also involved in the week-long Boys-to-Men Mentorship Program conducted for the local Kenyan boys and enjoyed a couple of days on safari. Pinkard traveled to Kenya with Jim Wood, senior pastor at his Norfolk-based church, whose son is Adam Wood ’13. Pinkard matriculated from Martinsville, Virginia, and graduated from VMI with a bachelor’s degree in English. 157

ALUMNI NEWS On June 29, 2010, Col. Roland J. Tiso Jr. ’73, USA (Ret), was awarded the Knowlton Medal for exceptional achievements while serving as a senior military analyst of the Office of the Defense Representative in Islamabad, Pakistan, during the time period of April-December 2009. Presenting the medal was Brig. Gen. Steve Fogarty, Intelligence director at U.S. Central Command. Tiso also was awarded an Army Commendation Medal for actions in combat

while serving in Iraq in 2003. During his 31-year military career, Tiso commanded infantry companies in Korea and the United States, a parachute infantry battalion in Panama, a U.S. observer detachment with the United Nations in Iraq and a peacekeeping task force in Egypt. His military service has included assignments in Somalia, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Afghanistan, Pakistan and Iraq. Tiso matriculated from Pelham, New York, and graduated from VMI with a bachelor’s degree in history. He earned his master’s degree from James Madison University in Virginia.

Roland Tiso ’73, left, receiving the Knowlton Medal from Brig. Gen. Steve Fogarty.

Keith D. Dickson ’76, Ph.D., has been chosen to participate as a fellow in the 2010-11 class of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Seminar XXI program: Foreign Politics, International Relations and the National Interest. The seminar is designed for senior military officers, civilian government officials, and executives

In November 2009, Gary J. Haste ’77 went to Puerto Cabezas on the east coast of Nicaragua with a group from his church – Kempsville Baptist in Virginia Beach – to assist in an orphanage run by the Verbo Church. Haste returned to Nicaragua in July 2010 with the same church group, as well as over 30 high school-age kids, to help construct a school building. Pictued bottom, left, was Haste and his son, Matt, and two of the children. “As you can see in the photo” (center, backset), wrote Haste, “[Puerto Cabezas] is an extremely primitive area. All of the work is done by hand, and it is [constructed with] only the bare essentials – walls and roof.” Haste explained that the orphanage compound is self sufficient in terms of water, housing,


from industry and non-governmental organizations. The seminar focuses on the development of analytic skills for studying foreign politics and international relations by exploring key poliDickson ’76 cy issues critical to American interests. This year’s class will have 87 fellows who are expected to reach top decision-making levels in the next three-to-five-years. Dickson is a professor of military studies at Joint and Combined Warfighting School, Joint Forces Staff College, where he has served since 1999. Dickson matriculated from Farmville, Virginia, and graduated from VMI with a bachelor’s degree in history. He earned his master’s and doctorate degrees from the University of Richmond in 1978 and the University of Virginia in 1998, respectively.

schools, etc. “Outside the fence,” Haste continued, “it is the poorest area in the poorest country in the Americas. “While working with the orphanage, I wore my VMI hat the whole time … and everyone loved it. A fellow named John (pictured below) helps run the construction projects for the orphanage. On our last day, John told me he really liked my hat, so I left it with him.” The hat was also worn by many of the children in the village. At bottom, right, is a photo of a little girl wearing Haste’s hat.


ALUMNI NEWS Secretary of Defense Robert Gates has announced that the president has nominated Brig. Gen. William D.R. Waff ’76, USAR, for promotion to the grade of major general and assignment as commanding general (Troop Program Unit), 99th Regional Support Command, Fort Dix, New Jersey.

As of this writing, Waff is serving as deputy commanding general (Individual Mobilization Augmentee), United States Army Human Resource Command, Alexandria, Virginia. Waff matriculated from Memphis, Tennessee, and attended VMI for one

year. He earned his bachelor’s degree in biology and music from the University of Mississippi in 1976. He earned a master of divinity degree from Seabury-Western Theological Seminary in Illinois and a doctorate of ministry degree from Graduate Theological Foundation, Georgetown

Off the Clock with Douglas Burdett ’82 Posted: June 11, 2010 Editor’s Note: The following article featuring Douglas N. Burdett ’82 appeared in Inside Business – The Hampton Roads Business Journal and is reprinted here with permission from the publisher.

With his 50th birthday on the way, the owner of Artillery Marketing Communications in Norfolk [Virginia] decided to approach the half-century mark with style. Now he’s rattling off one-liners in front of local crowds. (If only he could win over his two kids ...) As the specter of the big 5-0 loomed, Douglas Burdett decided it was time to break out and do some things he had never done. First, our intrepid businessman went bear hunting in Maine, bagging a 200-pounder on his birthday, Sept. 23. “I gave my wife the option of my taking the hunting trip or having a mid-life crisis. She felt the bear hunting trip would be a lot cheaper.” Then this spring, Burdett enrolled in a stand-up comedy class. Seriously, folks ... That Burdett, owner and president of Artillery Marketing Communications in Norfolk, would find himself learning how to snap off one-liners at age 50 hardly surprised some of his longtime friends. Inside him, was a comedian ready to burst out. “Their reaction was sort of like, ‘What took you so long?’ I was always the class clown, the guy going for laughs.” A tall, athletic guy, Burdett didn’t have much of an opportunity to get many laughs as a cadet at Virginia Military Institute or later in the Army. “They didn’t appreciate a lot of my material,” he said. The course, offered by the Muse Writers

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The photos above and below by Harry Gerwien appeared with the Inside Business article about Douglas Burdett’s foray into stand-up comedy.

Center in Norfolk, consisted of eight, twohour weekly sessions. On graduation night, students performed a stand-up routine at the Boot restaurant in Ghent. “I learned a lot,” said Burdett who moved

to Hampton Roads from New York City in 1997 with his wife, Pam. They have two children, Harry, 15, and Emma, 12, who “don’t think their dad is all that funny.” “It isn’t just about having material. It’s setting it up and also establishing a character that people can identify with. In my routines, I am sort of the guy who is clueless about a lot of things. The biggest thing I took out of the course was an appreciation for how hard stand-up is.” Burdett played several gigs before his big graduation night. The first came by accident when a client, Miss Utility of Virginia, was having a conference, and the warm-up act canceled. Burdett was asked to fill in and do his shtick in front of 230 people. “I told them, let me perform for you first and see if you like it,” he said. “It went over very well. Of course, they had had a lot of scotch to drink. But it worked out well.” He also performed at open mike night at the Cinema Café and had a gig at Cozzy’s Comedy Club in Newport News. The bear, by the way, is still in Maine where it is being stuffed and will become a member of the family soon. Burdett recently competed in the “Clash of Comics” at the Funny Bone in Virginia Beach. He billed it as his “farewell” to comedy. Unless, of course, you beg him to unleash his material again. He was one of 10 “amateur” comedians to hit the stage. Some 30 of his “fans” showed up to laugh him on. “I was pretty nervous,” he said, “but it went well. People actually laughed.” While he didn’t finish in the top three, many in the audience stopped by to let him know, “You are a pretty funny guy.”


ALUMNI NEWS University in Washington, D.C., in 1983 and 1997, respectively. In July 2010, Anthony U. Moore ’78 was appointed assistant secretary for the Chesapeake Bay Restoration by Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell. Moore was appointed to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in 2003 as a senior policy advisor for the Office of Water. In this position, he helped develop innovative and sustainable market-based programs to protect and restore environmental resources, and he managed the legislative affairs for the office. Prior to serving at the EPA, Moore was the director of policy for the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality from 2000-02 in which he managed the legislative, regulatory, public affairs and constituent service activities for the department. He was appointed assistant secretary of Natural Resources for the commonwealth of Virginia in 1998 in which he worked with agencies to protect and restore natural resources. Moore matriculated from Richmond, Virginia, and graduated from VMI with a bachelor’s degree in chemistry. Col. Timothy K. Bridges ’79, USAF (Ret), has been assigned as the director of Communications, Installations and Mission Support, Headquarters Air Force Materiel Command (AFMC), at WrightPatterson Air Force Base, Ohio. According to a May 2010 press release, he is responsible for providing leadership, direction and oversight for communications, civil engineering, antiterrorism and force protection. He also provides delivery of base support activities that directly impact base mission accomplishment and quality of life for the military and civilian community on and around AFMC installations. In addition, he directs strategic planning, programming, budgeting and execution reviews for all base support products and services, an annual $2 billion program. Bridges matriculated from Upper Marlboro, Maryland, and graduated from VMI with a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering. He was commissioned in 1979 as a distinguished graduate of the Air Force ROTC program. He has served in various 160

roles at the base level, to include design, planning, contract management and operations. He has also twice served as a base civil engineer and squadron commander and has served as an installation commander. He has had a tour as an Air Force ROTC professor, and he has worked at major command levels in readiness, environmental and resource areas. Bridges retired from active duty at the rank of colonel in July 2006 and entered the Senior Executive Service.

infrastructure and $10 billion in annual contracts. Cawthorne matriculated from Colonial Heights, Virginia, and graduated from VMI with a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering. He earned his master’s degree in business administration from Boston University in 1986. He also attended Air Command and Staff College, Air War College and Industrial College of the Armed Forces in Washington, D.C. in 1994, 1998 and 2000, respectively.

Hubert G. (Bert) Schneider ’80 was Inside Business, The Hampton Roads featured on the West Point Web site (Virginia) Business Journal, has recogregarding the cadet summer research nized Jesse P. Waltz ’85 as a 2010 Excelprogram he started at Raytheon Missile lence Award Winner and a finalist for the Systems. 2010 Entrepreneur of the Year. Raytheon Missile Systems designs, In 1993, Waltz started JES – a foundadevelops and produces missile systems tion, crawlspace and basement repair comfor U.S. and allied forces, including air-to-air, strike, naval weapon systems, land combat missiles, guided projectiles, exoatmospheric kill vehicles and directed energy weapons. The summer research program gives young adults a chance to exchange ideas, acquaints them with Raytheon protocols and gives Raytheon a better insight into customers’ needs. Schneider matriculated from Frederick, Maryland, and graduated from VMI with a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering. He received a master’s degree from the U.S. Air Force Institute of Technology Jesse Waltz ’85, right, received the 2010 in 1984 and a master of business Excellence Award from Ed Power, left, administration degree from the Uni- publisher of Inside Business, The Hampton Roads (Virginia) Business Journal. Photo versity of Arizona in 2000. In the summer of 2010, Schneider by Vincent Schilling/Inside Business. donated his father’s Korean War video footage to PBS for a televised pany – and while JES was growing, Waltz documentary. The show, “Unforgettable: also consulted nationwide on foundation The Korean War,” aired June 21, 2010, repair and business management. To keep on PBS. track of his various business activities, he developed BizWiz®, a Web-based busiJohn R. Cawthorne ’81 retired from the ness management system designed for the U. S. Air Force in May 2010 as a colonel. foundation/basement/crawlspace repair His final Air Force assignment was industry and other home improvement deputy director, Installations and Mission industries. According to Waltz, “With Support, Headquarters Pacific Air Forces, BizWiz®, I can determine at the touch Hickam Air Force Base, Hawaii. In this of a button, while anywhere in the world, position, he managed policy and resourc- what is happening at JES.” Currently, ing for Civil Engineer, Security Forces and this management system is being used contracting activities for nine installations by 40 companies in the United States and with programs totaling $38 billion in base Canada. VMI ALUMNI REVIEW

ALUMNI NEWS Waltz matriculated from Sunbury, Pennsylvania, and graduated from VMI with a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering. While at VMI, he was a member of the VMI wrestling team that won the 1985 Southern Conference Championship. (Editor’s Note: An article about Waltz appeared in the 2010-Issue 3 Alumni Review, page 166.)

Lt. Col. John J. Wranek III ’85, ARNG, had a chance to meet the 44th president during the weekend of May 15-16, 2010. President Obama made a surprise visit to the 29th Infantry Division Hail & Farewell on May 15th at the Fort Belvoir Golf and Country Club in Alexandria, Virginia. He often plays golf at Fort Belvoir, and Wranek watched him play the 18th hole. The president then came to the club house and spent time with the division, thanking the group for their service and greeting everyone. Wranek is the associate director of Alumni and Reunion Giving with the VMI Foundation.

James B. Wilkinson Jr. ’85 was appointed deputy directory, Department of Conservation and Recreation, by Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell in May 2010. Wilkinson served in the administration of President George W. Bush at the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) from 2006-09, as chief of staff to the Veterans’ Employment and Training Service at DOL and as a senior aide to Labor Secretary Elaine L. Chao. Prior to that, Wilkinson served in the administration of former Virginia Gov. James Gilmore as a policy analyst in the Department of Human Resource Management. In this position, he authored articles 2010-Issue 4

for the state employee newspaper, Commonwealth Currents, and coordinated the Governor’s Service Awards program in 2001. Wilkinson matriculated from Richmond, Virginia, and graduated from VMI with a bachelor’s degree in history. He earned his master’s degree from Regent University School of Government in 1992. J. Bradford (Brad) Adams ’88 has been named the new vice president of sales at Healthpoint, Ltd. Adams was most recently at Animas Corporation, an insulin delivery and glucose management systems company and Johnson & Johnson’s (J&J) fastest growing medical device company, as vice president of worldwide sales and patient services. Prior to Animas, Adams was vice president of worldwide sales for J&J affiliate Therakos, a photophoresis drug/ device therapy company. He also served as region business director for J&J’s Centocor business with $394 million in annual sales. Other J&J positions included corporate account executive for the J&J Healthcare Systems group, in which he gained experience in healthcare systems and consulting. Before joining J&J, Adams developed healthcare administration skills as assistant administrator at Memorial Regional Medical Center in Richmond, Virginia. Adams matriculated from Midlothian, Virginia, and graduated with distinction from VMI, earning a bachelor’s degree in economics. He received a master’s degree from the Medical College of Virginia. In June 2010, Silviu F. (Sal) Bora ’90 has been promoted to lieutenant colonel in the U.S. Army Reserve. Bora served in the active Army from 1990-99 and in the Army Reserve from 2002 to present. Since November 2002, he has been the Joint Operations Center J-3 battle captain in the Arizona Army Reserve, assigned to the AZ ARNG Joint Forces Headquarters and Headquarters Company. In Bora’s civilian life, he is the Juarez site director and Americas manufacturing director for Foxconn Technology Group. He is directly responsible for the manage-

ment of more than 6,000 employees with annual revenues exceeding $7 billion. He is also responsible for the manufacturing of over seven million computers, notebooks and servers and over one million computer circuit boards on two continents, at five manufacturing sites, in four countries. Bora matriculated from Cicero, Illinois, and graduated from VMI with a bachelor’s degree in history. He earned a master’s degree from Central Michigan University.

In June 2010, Sal Bora ’90, right, was promoted to lieutenant colonel in the U.S. Army Reserve. Congratulating him was, at left, Guy Conte ’75, Alumni Association Southeast Region director. The promotion ceremony took place in Phoenix, Arizona.

On July 10, 2010, Christopher M. Strock ’97 and a friend carried Gina Holmes down the Cascade Falls four-mile hiking trail after she tore ligaments in her foot, rendering her unable to bear weight. Cascade Falls is part of Jefferson National Forest in Giles County, Virginia. Holmes was hiking with her four children and stepped into a crater which left 161

ALUMNI NEWS her incapacitated. Unable to walk, she was unsure how to get down the mountain when Strock and his friend met her on the trail. They took turns carrying her down the mountain. Holmes sent an e-mail to VMI, because she was appreciative of the “extraordinary kindness.” She states in her e-mail, “… your [VMI] men are always so kind and respectful. Chris’ actions further show what kind of men you are developing.” Strock matriculated from Burke, Virginia, and graduated from VMI with distinction, holding a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering. He attained his master’s degree from Virginia Polytechnic Institute. Leslie E. (Les) Thornbury ’98 has accepted a Fulbright Teacher Exchange scholarship. This scholarship has allowed Thornbury to teach a year in Reforma, Chiapas, Mexico. Thornbury matriculated from Trumbull, Connecticut, and graduated from VMI with a bachelor’s degree in modern languages. Patrick N. Forrest ’99 received the Fulbright Award at the University of Alberta in July 2010. The Canada-U.S. Fulbright Program is a bi-national program of educational exchange supported by the Government of Canada, through the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada, the Government of the United States, through the Department of State, and a large number of public and private sector partners. The Canada-U.S. Fulbright Program is engaged with the university community in both countries. The mandate of the Canada-U.S. Fulbright Program is to enhance mutual understanding between the people of Canada and the people of the United States by providing support to outstanding graduate students, faculty, professionals and independent researchers. These individuals conduct research and lecture Forrest ’99 or enroll in formal 162

Entrepreneurs Mayo ’95 and Johnson ’96 Juggle Jobs and Duties

Editor’s Note: The following article, featuring Johnathan Mayo ’95 and Lester Johnson Jr. ’96, appeared in the Richmond Times-Dispatch and is reprinted here with permission.

Two Entrepreneurs Endure Long Hours as They Juggle Jobs, Duties by Emily Dooley

Lester Johnson Jr. and Johnathan Mayo have four jobs between them. And that doesn’t count the time they spend setting up events to raise money for charity – $40,000 donated in the past three years. The two, along with Johnson’s mom, Velma, opened up Mama J’s restaurant late last year [2009] in Jackson Ward. By day, Johnson, 35, is an engineer for Verizon Communications. By night, he manages the restaurant. Mayo, 37, splits his days between Mama J’s and as president of Avail Marketing. Ten to 12-hour days, seven days a week are not uncommon. “Being an entrepreneur is hard,” Johnson said. “It’s juggling seven, eight things – human resources, payroll, purchasing, food, health inspections ...” Johnson and Mayo started Avail in 1997, using savings to get things going. They recently won a contract to promote

Chick-fil-A’s local charity dodgeball tournament. “It’s probably one of the biggest contracts we’ve received,” said Mayo, who volunteered with the tournament last year to get to know organizers. Last year, they got a loan – under $50,000 – to expand operations and help with general business costs – from REDC Community Capital group, a nonprofit lender serving the Richmond area. It was their first and only loan. “That was huge for us. None of the banks would give us a loan,” Mayo said. For the duo, who both have mechanical engineering degrees from Virginia Military Institute and MBAs from Virginia Commonwealth University, the reason was often the same. They needed a longer history of positive cash flow. “It’s where you’re striving to get to and it’s almost like, ‘If I were at that point, I wouldn’t need a loan,’” Mayo said. While minorities are more likely to be turned down for a loan, Mayo has never felt that was the reason. It was about money. That’s how he runs his business also. They are conscious of using minority vendors when they can, but the bottom line is key to this emerging business. “We try to, but it’s not our only focus,” Mayo said. “Our focus is definitely service and quality.”


ALUMNI NEWS academic programs in the other country. Forrest will spend four months, starting January 2011, at the University of Alberta conducting research for a project entitled, “Protracted Refugee Situations: Improving the U.S. and Canadian Response to an Ongoing Crisis.” Forrest matriculated from Lake Mary, Pennsylvania, and graduated with a bachelor’s degree in English. He earned his master of law degree from George Washington

University and his juris doctorate degree from Syracuse University. He worked with the Department of Homeland Security as Presidential Management Fellow, was a member of the Bush-Obama Presidential Transition Team and is a former associate counsel with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services. Michael N. Lokale ’03, M.D., graduated from the Virginia College of Osteopathic

Sweet Reward

Editor’s Note: The following article featuring Steve Stark ’10 appeared in a May 2010 issue of The Winchester Star (Winchester, Virginia). It is reprinted here with the publisher’s permission.

VMI cadet’s graduation present is a massive cake created by TV’s “Ace of Cakes” Baltimore bakery by Rebecca Layne - The Winchester Star

The Old Barracks of Virginia Military Institute were not made of stone and stucco come Saturday afternoon, but white chocolate raspberry. The sugary sentries stood at attention outside the icing-covered walls, vigilant against incoming eating utensils. The $3,600 cake, made by Charm City Cakes in Baltimore, arrived as a graduation present for Steve Stark, 22, the first Millbrook High School student to graduate from VMI. “They left as high school boys and came home as amazing people,” said Steve’s mom, Stefanie, as she motioned toward the group of VMI graduates present at her son’s graduation party at their home in the Senseny Glen subdivision. “It’s such a big accomplishment,” she said. “It’s changed them all.” In April 2009, the Starks made a trip to Charm City Cakes – a custom cake shop featured on the Food Network’s “Ace of Cakes” reality TV show. They arrived with pictures of VMI’s Old Barracks in Lexington, now a National Historic Landmark, and told owner Duff Goldman

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Medicine (VCOM) in May 2010. Lokale was one of 156 graduates, and as he walked across the stage, the president of VCOM announced, “Here comes our Rhodes Scholar, and he’s a graduate of VMI.” Following the graduation ceremony, Lokale’s friends and family gathered at the college’s Newman Center for dinner and a slideshow depicting Lokale’s life. Representing VMI at the reception were Col. Tom Davis ’64; Col. Jim Turner ’65; Mike

they wanted a cake to match, all the way down to the two turrets, three cannonballs imbedded in the walls, and a small rat – the nickname for freshmen cadets – on the lawn. The detail was so true to life that the cake makers positioned a cadet – nicknamed the 1st Rat Sentinel – in the Barracks’ courtyard with banana peels and toilet paper strewn on him to depict an annual VMI tradition. Nearby, a gigantic replica of a gold VMI class ring was placed on the lawn. The Starks chose white chocolate raspberry from 50 possible flavors. It was the first cake of VMI that Charm City Cakes has ever done, according to Stefanie Stark. Steve graduated from Millbrook in 2006. He chose VMI because he “wanted to do the whole military thing.” His father, Tom, served in the Army for 10 years and in the National Guard for five years and met his wife while serving in Germany. Steve [began] training for the Army in mid June. After its delivery Saturday, the partygoers gawked at the threestory cake, which stood over a foot tall and took a couple of days to make, according to Charm City’s Sean Honey, who delivered it. “It’s crazy,” Steve said upon the cake’s arrival. “It doesn’t look like a cake right now. It pretty much looks like a scale model of the Barracks.” Jokes about how to go about cutting the cake and who would perform the heartbreaking deed were tossed around. “That’s going to bother me a little bit,” Tom Stark said. “It’s going to be tough. I think I might have to use a little parental guidance when that piece is cut.” Charm City Cakes could not be reached for comment.


ALUMNI NEWS Bozeman, former VMI head track coach; and VMI Board of Visitors members, Jim Rogers ’67 and Carter Melton ’67. Lokale plans to complete his medical residency in Tucson, Arizona. A native of Kenya, he graduated from VMI with a bachelor’s degree in biology. He continued his education at Oxford University, where he graduated with a master’s degree in June 2010. He was the 10th VMI graduate, and first from VMI since 1967, to be a Rhodes Scholar recipient. Brandon Waltrip ’03 was the recipient of two awards from Mississippi College School of Law: the American Board of Trial Advocates Scholarship and the Dean’s LSBA Leadership Award, chosen by Dean Jim Rosenblatt. The American Board of Trial Advocates Scholarship is given to a student who is nominated by the lead American Board of Trial Advocates instructor in the Trial Practice Course. Waltrip matriculated from Williamsburg, Virginia, and graduated from VMI with a bachelor’s degree in biology.

Joe Montagna ’04 and Gerrid Gall ’05 were in Pakistan to evacuate Pakistani flood victims during humanitarian relief efforts in the KhyberPakhtunkhwa province. As of this writing, the United Nations estimates that more than 21 million people are injured or homeless as a result of the flooding, exceeding the combined total of individuals affected by the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami, the 2005 Kashmir earthquake and the 2010 Haiti earthquake. Gall, who submitted the photos, wrote, “Our squadron, HMM-165 (REIN), is the U.S. air asset dedicated to providing relief supplies and transporting displaced people to refugee camps. Currently, we are operating in Northern Pakistan in the Swat Valley … being able to help those stranded and less fortunate makes it rewarding beyond words.” (Editor’s Note: Photos could not be printed larger due to low resolution of the originals.)

... Book Announcements ... Book Announcements ... Book Announcements ... Book Announcements ... Book Announcements ... Book Announcements ... Book Announcements ... The Crash of TWA Flight 260 by Charles M. Williams ’53. University of New Mexico Press, June 16, 2010. ISBN-10: 0826348076. At 7:05 a.m. on Feb. 19, 1955, TWA Flight 260 took off from the Albuquerque airport for a short flight to Santa Fe. The plane’s approved air route was a dog-leg running northnorthwest from Albuquerque, then east-northeast into Santa Fe to avoid flying over the Sandia Mountains. At 7:08 a.m., the ground service help at the airport saw Flight 260 about half a mile north of the airport terminal headed directly toward Sandia Ridge, almost entirely obscured by storm clouds. An Air Force colonel standing in front of his home a mile and a half northeast of the airport saw Flight 260 pass overhead and observed that, if

the plane was eastbound, it was too low; if it was northbound, it was off course. At 7:12 a.m., the plane’s terrain-warning bell sounded its alarm. Instinctively looking out the window, both pilots suddenly saw the sheer west face of the Sandias just beyond the right wingtip. It was an appalling shock considering they should have been 10 miles further west. Reacting instantly, they rolled the plane steeply to the left and pulled its nose up. When the heading indicator displayed a westerly heading, they started to level the wings. It was their final act. Hidden by the storm, another cliff side lay directly ahead. When they struck it, they were still in a left bank, nose high. Charles Williams, one of the first men on the scene of this horrific crash, has spent a lifetime unraveling the enigmas of TWA Flight 260’s final

... Book Announcements ... Book Announcements ... Book Announcements ... Book 164


ALUMNI NEWS ... Book Announcements ... Book Announcements ... Book Announcements ... Book Announcements ... Book Announcements... Book Announcements ... Book Announcements ... flight. It is a tale of days, minutes and seconds spread out over the span of half a century and a dramatic mystery cast upon a beautiful and treacherous mountain. In the end, Williams helps solve some of the controversies surrounding the crash, including the Civil Aeronautics Board’s over-swift determination that the pilots were at fault. About the Author: Charles M. Williams is an emeritus professor of computer information systems at Georgia State University. He is married with three children and six grandchildren and lives in Atlanta, Georgia. He is also a nationally recognized competitive race walker and former runner. Williams matriculated from Carmel, California, and is a distinguished graduate of VMI with a bachelor’s degree in physics.

of Richmond’s – indeed Virginia’s – professional, business, political and creative leaders over the past 160 years share the land with the 18,000 Confederate dead buried there. As Dr. Edward L. Ayers says in his foreward to the book, they “speak to us still.” Richmond’s Hollywood Cemetery is a 232-page book that includes almost 200 images, both original photography by Peters and images from the History Center’s archives.

Richmond’s Hollywood Cemetery by John O. Peters ’58. The Dietz Press, Petersburg, Virginia. ISBN: 978-0615-39192-2. Richmond, Virginia’s, Hollywood Cemetery tells countless stories, and in his new book, John Peters reveals many of them. Although Hollywood has long been viewed quite legitimately as a Southern shrine, there are other aspects of the cemetery that make it unique. Starting with Hollywood’s role as one of America’s great rural cemeteries and its incomparable setting on the mighty James River, Peters’ narrative includes intriguing stories about the ironwork, stone carvers, mausoleums and symbolism, to mention only a few. Many

Virginia’s Historic Courthouses (University Press of Virginia, 1995), co-authored with his wife, Margaret T. Peters, and Blandford Cemetery: Death and Life in Petersburg (Historic Blandford Cemetery Foundation, 2004). He authored Tale of the Century: A History of The Bar Association of the City of Richmond (1985) and, with Margaret Peters, Courts of the Richmond Area-A Primer (1969). He did the original photography for both Richmond’s Monument Avenue (University of North Carolina Press, 2001) and Hayes: The Plantation, Its People and Their Papers (North Carolina Office of Archives and History, 2007) by John G. Zehmer Jr. His articles and images have appeared in numerous other books and publications. He practiced law in Richmond for more than 30 years and is a graduate of the Virginia Military Institute and the University of Virginia School of Law. Mosby’s Keydet Rangers written and compiled by Eric W. Buckland. That Fateful Night Press; Second edition, 2010. ISBN 13: 9870-914927-65-5.

About the Author: This marks the seventh book for which John Peters has written the words or taken the photographs, sometimes both, as is the case with this work. He wrote and created the images for

Mosby’s Keydet Rangers includes a large amount of previously unpublished material that gives the reader new insights into the young men who matriculated at VMI and rode with Col. John Singleton Mosby. It is a comprehensive collection of short biographical sketches, personal letters, accounts of raids and incidents, anecdotes, newspaper articles, passages from books, memorials, and obituaries that brings the young rangers to

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ALUMNI NEWS ... Book Announcements ... Book Announcements ... Book Announcements ... Book Announcements ... Book Announcements ... Book Announcements ... Book Announcements ... life and sheds new light on their operations during the war. Twenty-one of the men also fought with the Corp of Cadets at the Battle of New Market. About the Author: Buckland received a commission as a second lieutenant in the United States Army after graduation from the University of Kansas in 1977. He had a 22-year career as an officer, including assignments as an infantry officer and a Special Forces officer, serving tours in El Salvador, Honduras and Panama. He has had a lifelong interest in the war between the states and in keeping with his military career, has always been fascinated by the irregular and unconventional aspects of the war. To order the book, contact the author at

Tidewater Warrior: The World War I Years, General Lemuel C. Shepherd Jr., USMC Twentieth Commandant by Tom FitzPatrick. Signature Book Printing; 1 edition, 2010. ISBN: 978-0-9728664-1-5. Gen. Lemuel C. Sheperd Jr., class of 1917 – born and raised in Norfolk, Virginia – is one of VMI’s most distinguished graduates. He is revered within the Marine Corps as a legendary warrior and inspirational combat leader who served in key frontline roles in three wars – World War I, World War II and the Korean War – participating in many of the Corps’ most famous battles. A color portrait of then-Cmdt. Sheperd appeared on the cover of the Nov. 24, 1952, issue of Time magazine in connection with a complimentary feature article about him and the Marine Corps during the Korean War. Following his 42 years of military service, he served for 16 years

as chairman of the VMI Foundation Board of Trustees, becoming “chairman emeritus” upon his retirement from the

board at age 85. Earlier, he had received the New Market Medal, VMI’s highest honor. In the early 1980s, a committee of Institute, Foundation and Alumni Association officials commissioned a sculpture in bas-relief depicting Gen. Shepherd in battle dress in Okinawa during World War II. (This artwork occupies a prominent site on VMI’s parade ground perimeter.) This biographical work is the product of over six years of research and writing. It focuses on the highly influential, first 25 years of Sheperd’s unusually long, full and valuable life. It covers his experiences, growth and development during a four-year period (1917-20) surrounding the U.S. involvement in World War I, wherein he served almost continuously in France and Germany. There, he compiled an exceptional record for leadership and heroism, serving as a company-level officer with the 4th Marine Brigade within the Army’s 2nd Infantry Division, arguably the American Expeditionary Force’s best fighting units. Emerging from this war as a thrice-wounded, highly decorated Marine captain, he was soon selected to be an aide-de-camp to Marine Corps Cmdt. John A. Lejeune at Washington, D.C. – subsequently also serving concurrently as an aide to President Warren G. Harding at the White House. About the Author: Tom FitzPatrick – an Army veteran and retired FBI agent – is the father of Thomas J. FitzPatrick ’86. This is the author’s second book about a distinguished 20th century Marine Corps flag officer. His earlier work – entitled A Character That Inspired, published in 2003 – is about the amphibious warfare pioneer, Maj. Gen. Charles D. Barrett, USMC.

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Governor Appoints New Members to VMI Board of Visitors In July 2010, Virginia Governor Bob YMCA Capital Campaign and a past board McDonnell appointed two new members member of St. Catherine’s School and to the VMI Board of Visitors (BOV): Bruce the Children’s Museum of Richmond. C. Gottwald Jr. ’81 and Maj. Gen. Daniel With an avid interest in intercollegiate E. Long Jr. athletics, evidenced by his participaGottwald has been the managing direc- tion on the soccer and lacrosse teams tor of Jonah, LLC, a private investment during his cadetship, Gottwald served management company in Richmond, Virginia, since 1996. After graduating from VMI with a bachelor’s degree in history, he began his business career with the Ethyl Corporation as a marketing and financial analyst. In 1984, he earned an MBA from the College of William & Mary and started working with First Colony Life Insurance, an Ethyl subsidiary, in product development. Concentrating his efforts with both corporations, Gottwald was promoted to vice president Long Gottwald ’81 and treasurer of Ethyl and chairman and CEO of First Colony in 1992. Over the next five years, as president of the VMI Keydet Club, he served on the board of directors for Inc., the Institute’s athletic fund-raising Ethyl Corporation, First Colony Corpo- organization, from 1995-97. Until his apration, Albemarle Corporation, Signet pointment to the VMI Board of Visitors, Banking Corporation and Paragon Mu- he was a trustee with the VMI Foundatual Funds. He retired from First Colony tion, and he serves on the Foundation’s in 1996 upon its sale to GE Capital and investment group, VMI Holdings, LLC. began his leadership of Jonah, LLC. Gottwald is the father of six children. Gottwald now serves as chairman of the Appointed as adjutant general, Maj. Gen. board of directors of the First National Long is serving as an ex officio member Bank of Hempstead in Hope, Arkansas; of the BOV. president of the Greenwing Corporation, a Long is a 46-year veteran of the Virginia holding company for Greenwing Uruguay National Guard. He rose through the ranks SA, a hunting lodge and outfitter service of the Guard and is now responsible for in Uruguay; and in 2007, was appointed the combat readiness, administration and to the board of Southern Bridge Capital training of more than 8,200 Army and Air – Panama. Active in community affairs, National Guard personnel. he is a member of the board of directors For the past three years, he was comemeritus of the YMCA, and he is on the mander, Joint Task Force Civil Support boards of Union Presbyterian Seminary (JTF-CS), at Fort Monroe, Virginia. The and SCAN Richmond. He also serves as a unit responds to catastrophic chemical, deacon of First Presbyterian Church. He biological and nuclear attacks in the Northis past chairman of the Metro Richmond ern Command area of responsibility. 2010-Issue 4

Long graduated from officer candidate school in Fort Benning, Georgia, and has served in a broad range of command and staff assignments. He has commanded at every level, including combat engineer company, engineer battalion and infantry division (light). Prior to commanding the 29th Infantry Division (Light), which he did from August 2002 to August 2004, Long served as the assistant division commander (maneuver) and deployed with the 29th as the deputy commander, Multinational Division North, Operation Force, Bosnia Herzegovina in 2001-02. His later assignments include principal assistant to the chief of the National Guard Bureau, responsible for formulating and coordinating plans and support to the Southwest U.S. border security mission. He also served as the senior military officer assigned to the joint Iraq/Afghanistan Study Group and commanded Task Force Care/Katrina in Louisiana, and he was the deputy director and then director of the project and contracting office in Iraq from September 2004 to September 2005. Long graduated magna cum laude from Liberty University in Lynchburg, Virginia, with a bachelor of science degree. In addition, he graduated from the U.S. Army War College and is a graduate of the Senior Military Leadership course at the Command and General Staff College. He has an extensive background in construction and construction management. Long and his wife, Diane, have two children and four grandchildren. As VMI’s supervisory board, the BOV defines the mission of the Institute and oversees the development, revision and implementation of a strategic plan for the accomplishment of that mission. The board has 16 members, appointed by the governor of Virginia and subject to confirmation by the Virginia General Assembly. Of those, four must be nonalumni, and 12 must be alumni. The four non-alumni must be residents of the commonwealth. Four of the 12 alumni are non-residents of the commonwealth. A regular term of membership is four years. Members shall serve and be eligible for reappointment as provided by statute. Each year the board appoints a cadet to serve as a non-voting, advisory representative to the board. 167

INSTITUTE VMI Retains Spot Among Top Public Liberal Arts Colleges The Institute kept its place in the top rank of national public liberal arts colleges in the latest ranking released Aug. 16, 2010, by U.S. News & World Report. In the rankings, VMI was named the No. 3 public liberal arts college in the nation, coming in behind the U.S. Military Academy and the U.S. Naval Academy. This is the same position VMI has held since 2007, when federal service academies were added to that category for the first time. Previous to that, VMI held the No. 1 position for six years running. Among all public and private liberal arts colleges, VMI retained the No. 62 spot it first achieved last year. The ranking puts VMI firmly in the 1st tier of colleges nationwide. The No. 62 position is the highest ranking VMI has ever held among all colleges. “This consistency of our rankings year after year reflects the Institute’s commitment to excellence,” said Brig. Gen. R. Wane Schneiter, deputy superintendent and dean of the faculty. “By concentrating on offering a relatively small number of excellent majors, a rigorous core curriculum, and complementary academic enrichment programs like honors and undergraduate research, our faculty and staff have been able to accomplish a great deal. They deserve credit for their dedication to ensuring our cadets receive an outstanding education.” U.S. News considers such factors as a college’s reputation as rated by academic leaders nationally; the retention of students; class size; the quality of the faculty; the quality of students; financial resources; graduation rate performance; and the alumni giving rate. VMI’s engineering programs were once again included in the magazine’s list of the nation’s best undergraduate engineering programs at schools whose highest degree is a bachelor’s or master’s degree. The Institute placed No. 21 on that list. The rankings in the engineering category are based exclusively on the reputation of the program. VMI is ranked No. 14 on the list of Great Schools, Great Prices among national liberal arts colleges. The ranking is based on academic quality and the net cost of attendance for a student who receives the average level of need-based financial aid. The Institute was also included in the non-ranked list of A-Plus Schools for B Students among national liberal arts colleges. The listing evaluates the quality of the school’s academic program and the academic profile of admitted students.

Lab Named in Honor of Jamison ’57

Forbes Rates VMI Among America’s Best Colleges VMI is among the best colleges in America, according to rankings released in August 2010 by Forbes magazine. VMI ranks No. 60 among the best colleges in the nation. Forbes also ranks it as No. 64 on its list of America’s Best College Buys. In the national listing, posted to the magazine’s Web site, VMI moved up from last year’s ranking of No. 79 among all public and private colleges in universities nationally. The rankings are based on 11 factors that measure student satisfaction, postgraduate success, student debt, four-year graduation rate and competiveness as reflected in major awards won by students. Forbes ranks just the top 9 percent of the nation’s 6,600 accredited post-secondary colleges and universities for its America’s Best College list. Other Virginia schools listed were Washington and Lee University (No. 37), University of Virginia (No. 44), College of William and Mary (No. 46), University of Richmond (No. 84), Sweet Briar College (No. 87), RandolphMacon College (No. 103), Virginia Tech (No. 156), James Madison University (No. 169), Hampden-Sydney College (No. 205), University of Mary Washington (No. 208), Hollins University (No. 267), Randolph College (No. 272), Emory and Henry College (278), George Mason University (No. 297), Roanoke College (No. 433), Longwood University (No. 462), Old Dominion University (No. 498), Virginia Commonwealth University (No. 531), Christopher Newport University (No. 533), Mary Baldwin College (No. 553), and Liberty University (No. 609).

Photo at left: More than 300 alumni and friends joined retired professor Donald K. Jamison ’57 and his wife, Priscilla, for a ceremony held last spring announcing the naming of a fluid mechanics laboratory in Jamison’s honor. Gen. J.H. Binford Peay ’62, superintendent, made the announcement recognizing Jamison’s service to the Institute. Jamison retired in 1992 and has continued to be active at VMI in academic advising for intercollegiate athletes. VMI photo by Kevin Remington.



INSTITUTE Cadets Are Urged to Take on “Challenges to Liberty”

Civil rights attorney Morris Dees addressed the Corps of Cadets during academic convocation on Sept. 13, 2010. VMI photo by Kevin Remington.

Looking into the sea of VMI cadets he would address to mark their academic convocation on Sept. 13, Morris Dees liked what he saw. When he looked past their uniform appearance in crisp, white shirts and trousers, he saw men and women who differ in race and ethnicity, a Corps of Cadets that reflects a changing world quite different from the one in which Dees was raised. The civil rights attorney grew up in rural Alabama in the 1940s and 1950s. Each day as he recited the Pledge of Allegiance in his rural schoolhouse, he knew America was not a nation that met its claim to provide liberty and justice for all. In 1971, Dees co-founded the Southern Poverty Law Center to ensure that the promises of the civil rights movement became a reality for all Americans. The center has successfully gone to battle in court with hate groups such as the United Klans of America, White Aryan Resistance and the Aryan Nations. It also has pursued justice for immigrants, the poor and endangered children. Dees told the cadets that throughout the

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United States’ history, a courageous few have made a great difference to further the ideal of one nation with justice and liberty for all. He cited John Adams’ courage in taking the case of Capt. Thomas Preston and the British soldiers arrested on criminal charges following the Boston Massacre in 1770. He also noted the brave few who spoke out against the U.S. government’s forced relocation and internment of JapaneseAmericans following the attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941. “There are tyrants today as bad as King George,” said Dees. “Today, you have a man who wants to burn the Koran to heighten his religious beliefs and an ugly debate about whether a mosque should be built near ground zero. In America today, there are more than 900 hate groups, a thousand patriot militias, an enormous rise in hate crimes and senseless attacks on people of the Islamic faith.” Dees said that the small number of courageous people who are able to rise above fear and misunderstanding are the people who

make the United States the great nation that it has become. “Martin Luther King faced contemporaries with no vision, political leaders with no backbone and terrorists with no conscience,” said Dees. “He and men like your own Jonathan Daniels [’61] inspired many people who followed them to make sure we have justice today.” While many cadets in attendance were familiar with the story of Daniels, the VMI alumnus who was murdered in Alabama in 1965 supporting the civil rights movement, Dees made his point about courage by sharing some of the cases he’s tried through the Southern Poverty Law Center. In 1981, Dees represented immigrant Vietnamese fishermen in Texas whose hardearned success threatened the security of a renegade group of their American peers. The latter used fear and the intimidation of the Texas Knights of the Ku Klux Klan, who burned crosses and destroyed some of the Vietnamese shrimp boats. Dees compelled the former to have faith in the U.S. legal system, and they prevailed. That same year, Michael Donald, a 19-yearold African American, was picked at random as the victim of abduction and lynching by two Ku Klux Klan members in Mobile, Alabama. Several years later, Dees sued the United Klans of America for its role in the murder and won a $7 million judgment for Donald’s mother, a verdict that bankrupted the organization. These cases have made the center and Dees reviled enemies of the extremist movement, but he said these victories also have made him proud to be an American. He encouraged the cadets to accept the challenges to liberty and justice that will come their way. “In your future roles as civilians and soldiers, each of you will have the opportunity to stand next to someone whose back’s against the wall,” Dees told the Corps of Cadets. “You’ll have the opportunity to display courage, and it will be those people who stand beside you that will mean more to you than the money you will earn or the recognition you’ll receive.”

Editor’s Note: Unless stated otherwise, the articles and photos in the Institute section of the Alumni Review are provided by VMI Communications and Marketing.



Leadership Center to Facilitate Major Conferences in 2010-11


he Institute is no stranger to playing conference host, but with a fully staffed and completely finished Center for Leadership and Ethics, serving as host for major events has become an easier task. This year, the CLE will bring together members of the VMI community and beyond to focus on leadership, Eastern and Western relations, and the environment. The facility offers an ideal setting for a wide variety of topics and audiences. “We have been discovered as a facility and are booking events into 2012,” said Capt. Susan Rabern, acting director of VMI’s CLE. “Faculty who have not been able to offer a forum for conferences for organizations they’re involved in now have one. Most importantly, we want to offer a robust program at the CLE, and we want to make sure that the conferences we choose to host highlight the themes of leadership and ethics.” More than 200 participants arrived in Lexington Oct. 4-6 for “Answering the Nation’s Call for Leaders of Character,” the inaugural VMI Leadership Conference, which will take place biennially. Among the speakers and panelists were Dr. Edward Ayers, president of the University of Richmond; Lt. Gen. Robert Caslen Jr., commanding general of the U.S. Army Combined Arms Center and Fort Leavenworth; author and Army veteran Craig Mul-


laney of the U.S. Agency for International Development; and retired collegiate and National Football League coach Bobby Ross ’59. These and other renowned speakers provided content and format that Rabern thinks will build excitement for the next leadership conference in 2012. On the afternoon before the conference officially began, the CLE offered a series of workshops on cyber warfare, cheating and honor systems, and leadership and dissent. The keynote address focused on the urgent need for leadership in America. Conference targets included faculty, students and business leaders, and the plenary panel, breakout sessions and addresses were designed to share a variety of experiences and perspectives so that conference-goers could learn from one another. “We came to the theme of the conference in response to the crisis of leadership in America today,” said Rabern. “We didn’t want to limit the conference to the academic arena; we wanted to include leaders who are receiving our graduates in the workplace, too. For instance, a plenary panel of college leaders and corporate CEOs discussed the challenges of selecting leaders in today’s society.” In spring 2011, the CLE will shift its focus to the global arena when VMI hosts “7112011: East Meets West” on March 23-25. This cross-cultural conference will focus on themes including literature, religion,

history, language, politics, pedagogy and Islamic-Christian amity. The conference is timed to help mark the 1,300th anniversary of the historical circumstances that brought the Eastern and Western worlds into contact and will provide discussion on the legacies and ramifications of that historical event. The conference is funded in part from a grant VMI received in 2008 from the U.S. Department of Defense to enhance its Arabic studies program and provide opportunities for cadets to study the language and culture. Col. Kathleen Bulger-Barnett, head of the department of modern languages and cultures, will assist the CLE staff as program coordinator for the conference. “This conference gives us the opportunity to go beyond what we see on the news each night – to talk not about war but about the culture and beauty of these two parts of the world,” said Rabern. “This event will give us a chance to celebrate the blending of Eastern and Western cultures. We plan a call for papers to allow the academic side to be represented, but as with the leadership conference, we want to involve the business community by inviting Fortune 500 firms who are involved in the Middle East to attend, as well.” VMI will play host April 5-7 to the 22nd annual Environment Virginia Symposium, a conference it has facilitated for years but which now has a new home in the CLE. Last year’s conference was the first for which Marshall Hall served as the main venue, and the facility received high marks from conference-goers. “It was great to have all major activities under one roof and to have such excellent audio-visual and a beautiful atmosphere,” said Maj. Amy DeHart, acting deputy director of the CLE. “We are looking forward to beginning work on the next Environment Virginia Symposium.” While the three major conferences planned for the current academic year are keeping the CLE staff busy, Rabern said her staff is looking forward to future events, such as a conference on the United States, Africa and China in November 2011 and Virginia’s Civil War Sesquicentennial Signature Conference in March 2012. Both are conferences that will place VMI in the national spotlight and will further strengthen the CLE’s mission of developing leadership qualities in VMI cadets.



Coveted Firearms Collection Finds Home in VMI Museum


hen he was a cadet, Henry M. “Hank” Stewart Jr. ’35 would spend hours in the VMI Museum, analyzing old rifles and pistols. He was captivated by man’s quest to get more than one shot, to go beyond the plodding single-shot muzzle loader. “Stewart was fascinated by the revolving cylinder, and it stimulated something in him to pursue a lifetime study of it,” said Col. Keith Gibson ’77, executive director of the VMI Museum. Stewart left VMI with a civil engineering degree. Over the next 50 years, he would establish himself as an authority on 19th-century American and European firearms, amassing an antique gun collection coveted throughout the world. The Smithsonian, the National Rifle Association and leading military museums in Europe had hoped to one day house Stewart’s firearms, but Stewart bequeathed his 800-piece collection to VMI.

For a long time, the VMI museum didn’t have space for all the weapons, so only a small number of them were displayed. The entire collection – the Henry Stewart 19th Century Antique Firearm Collection – went on display this fall, however, in the newly renovated 100 level of the museum. Stewart, who died in 1988, considered his collection an educational experience. That’s because Stewart was not just a gun collector; he was also a historian of early weapons manufacture who studied, researched and wrote like a scholar and who was always eager to share his vast knowledge with the public. It was Stewart’s own research that exposed the myth that Samuel Colt invented the revolver, when in fact Colt, an avid 19th-century inventor and promoter, put his major efforts into long arms, not handguns. “This isn’t the largest collection, but in terms of the quality of its focus and the fact

Col. Keith Gibson ’77, executive director of the VMI Museum, adjusts the placement of a Colt Paterson First Model rifle in the Henry Stewart 19th Century Antique Firearm Collection. VMI photo by Kevin Remington.

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that some pieces are the only examples we have, it ranks as one of the finest in the country,” Gibson said. The Stewart exhibit interprets the history and evolution of multi-shot revolving firearm technology. Gibson said it can be viewed from a number of perspectives: the rarity and quality of the arms, the artistry of some of the weapons, and the business side of 19th-century arms manufacturing. Several hundred pieces in the exhibit are original U.S. government patent models, including the Artemus Wheeler flintlock, which represents the first U.S. revolver patent, granted in 1818. Many of the weapons are in mint condition and feature intricately detailed cylinder engravings, such as those found on Colt’s Paterson series of rifles produced between 1836 and 1842. On display is a factory-engraved first model of a Colt Paterson .44-caliber rifle that Sam Colt personally presented to Mexican President Valentin Canalizo in 1844. A 17th-century matchlock revolver from India, a four-shot .46-caliber gun, is the earliest piece. An 1856 Stanton revolving rifle shows an unusual vertical hanging chamber, but perhaps the most noteworthy piece in the collection is the Isaiah Lukens air rifle carried by Lewis and Clark during their 1803 Northwest Expedition. The new exhibit should appeal to casual visitors, history buffs and academics. In addition to firearms, Stewart assembled an extensive reference library, which includes early auction catalogs, U.S. patent papers and patent models for more than 300 early 19th-century firearms, along with other artifacts. These items will be kept at the VMI Museum and made available to scholars and military historians. Other new permanent collections on the lower and upper levels of the VMI Museum are in the works. A VMI Heritage exhibit, which will occupy most of the upper level of the museum upon its completion at the end of 2010, will chronicle the history of VMI from 1835 to 2001. The heritage and firearms exhibits will be complemented by the VMI Citizens & Soldiers exhibit on the 100 level. Opening in 2011, this exhibit will focus on distinguished alumni in military and civilian life. 171

INSTITUTE Cadets Serve as Role Models in College Orientation Workshop

avoids getting too involved with personal issues that participants might bring with them to VMI. “Instead of trying to focus on their problems, we try to focus on things they can bring back home with them that will help them adapt: core values, morals, teamwork.” Williams said the COW program is supported mostly by VMI alumni and other private donors. It receives no state or federal funding and has never been used as a recruitment tool for VMI. Williams said some high school students who attend the COW summer session like what they see and decide they want to attend VMI. This fall, the VMI Corps of Cadets includes four graduates of the COW program; two of those will be new cadets. One of this year’s incoming cadets was a COW student during the summers of 2008 and 2009 and spent this summer on Post in the Summer Transition Program (STP). He considers his experiences in COW and STP as “stepping stones to a bigger challenge,” the one he is preparing for at VMI. “COW gave me better study habits, perseverance, determination and made me a better leader,” said the new cadet, who is thinking about pursuing a commission when he graduates in 2014. “I want to see how far I can go as a person and a leader.”

When he was in high school, Ali Ghazi Ali ’13 was thinking about college but wasn’t sure if he was ready. Ali, a resident of Odenton, Maryland, had heard about VMI from his sister-in-law, whose father graduated with the class of 1953. She told Ali about a summer program at VMI that helps students prepare for college. So, in the summer of 2007, Ali applied for the College Orientation Workshop (COW). “Through the demanding academics and physical training, I learned that no goal is unreachable,” Ali said. “The COW program transformed me from a troubled kid to a man with a goal of becoming a commissioned officer in the United States Army.” Ali said the COW program not only helped him refocus his goals but also made him want to attend VMI. Ali said two cadets who were COW counselors, Rob Brown ’09 and Joe Taylor ’09, inspired him. The College Orientation Workshop is a privately funded scholastic program that encourages disadvantaged or at-risk minority males to go to college. Each summer, about 20 high school students from around the country come to VMI, where they live on Post and interact with cadets who serve as role models. Eugene Williams, a 1974 VMI graduate and former VMI Board of Visitors member, started the COW program 24 years ago. As a former cadet, Williams knew many youngsters could benefit from the VMI experience – with its emphasis on high personal standards and expectations – even though some might not be ready to make it at VMI academically or physically. Because of the need to prepare participants for many aspects of cadet life, cadet participation has remained a hallmark of the COW program, and COW participants are expected to observe the VMI Honor System during their four-week stay on Post. “A lot of these kids come here without having had a lot of male guidance,” Williams said, noting that many minorities who participate in COW were raised in single-parent households. “We have to do more than just tell them that this is what we want them to do – we have to show them and teach them how to work hard.” This past summer, two VMI cadets worked as COW counselors, helping participants prepare for SAT testing and assisting with exercise drills and workouts. Cadet Johnathan Pope, a COW graduate from Hoover, Alabama, came to VMI on a wrestling scholarship. He will graduate with the class of 2011. Why did he want to be a COW counselor? Pope said at one point in his life, he wasn’t sure if he would ever go to college, and he wanted to let youngsters know that it’s OK to dream big. “A lot of these guys have never pushed themselves,” Pope said. “So, we try to push them, so they can learn to push themselves.” Cadet Ronald Ellsworth ’11, a psychology major from Newport News, Virginia, also served as a counselor. Ellsworth said he understands what a difference a good role model can make in the lives of youngsters. “With the right leadership, a lot of people can change, and they really look up to us,” Cadet Ronald Ellsworth ’11 (center, in black shirt) accompanies COW particiEllsworth said of his COW charges. pants in a climb up House Mountain. Photo courtesy Eugene Williams ’74. As a cadet counselor, Ellsworth said he



INSTITUTE Wounded Cadet Meets Graduation Requirements A cadet wounded in July 2010 by an as a mentor, or dyke. Carlton W. Kent, sergeant major of the improvised explosive device while on “He [Jones] was an exceptional cadet Marine Corps, presented him with the active duty with the Marine Corps in and a cadet master sergeant in his secPurple Heart in a bedside ceremony. Afghanistan is a cadet no more. ond class year,” said Col. Gary Levenson “After everything that’s happened,” said Sgt. Daniel Jones ’08 was Jones, “it was very special. notified in August that he “That’s also kind of when had met requirements for things really hit home, his final two elective credits what’s happened to me, while overseas. So, less than where I’m at and what I’m a month after his arrival at going to have to do to get the National Naval Medical better.” Center at Bethesda, Maryland, Jones was wounded after Jones has joined the classhis patrol dismounted from mates who matriculated with an M-ATV, which is one of him in 2004 – his Brother the MRAP, or mine-resistant Rats – as an alumnus. ambush protected, vehicles Delivering the good news now in use in Afghanistan. were two members of the VMI Jones and the others had staff, Lt. Col. Gary Bissell ’89, taken fire and were “footassistant chief of staff, and mobile” when the blast Col. James Park, chaplain occurred. Photo above: Lt. Col. Gary Bissell ’89, left, and Chaplain James Park visit wounded VMI cadet Marine Corps Sgt. to the Corps of Cadets, who At 25, Jones can remember Daniel Jones ’08 in his hospital room. Photo courtesy visited Jones in his hospital the days when Marines were Bissell. Photo below: Gen. James T. Conway, left, comroom. allowed to exit the safe zones mandant of the Marine Corps, and Carlton W. Kent, “They brought me a VMI in Humvees. sergeant major of the Marine Corps, presented Jones flag, a VMI blanket [and] “We had MRAPs when I with the Purple Heart in a bedside ceremony. ­Photo courtesy U.S. Marine Corps. all the information saying was in Iraq, but they didn’t I had completed my degree have enough,” said Jones. requirements,” said Jones in “In Afghanistan,” he said, a telephone interview from “Humvees weren’t allowed to his room. “That was a huge leave the wire.” surprise. I didn’t expect that He described how he had at all.” seen MRAP vehicles blasted His deployment in January by IEDs whose occupants was the second time he had weren’t severely injured. been called to serve in a war “They’re definitely awezone. His unit had deployed some pieces of gear; they’re to Iraq in September 2007, saving lives without a which should have been the doubt,” said Jones. start of his first class – or Now focused on an exsenior – year at VMI. tended recovery, Jones looks “If I walk in May [graduaback on the deployments tion ceremonies], I’ll walk that took him away from VMI with my Rats’ class,” said Jones. After ’80, deputy commandant of cadets. “He with equanimity. he returned from his first active duty was a great trainer to the Rats, who “I signed up; I joined the Marine assignment, Jones met members of the were last year’s graduating class.” Corps to do a job,” he said. “In a way, class who had been Rats during what Jones has had other visits since arrivit’s a surprise [to be called to active would have been his first class year, but ing in Maryland. Gen. James T. Conway, duty], but you expect it, because it’s he never had the opportunity to serve commandant of the Marine Corps, and your job.” 2010-Issue 4


INSTITUTE Traffic Behavior and Chinese War Are Among Research Topics

VMI cadets and professors Col. Mark Wilkinson, center, and Maj. Howard Sandborn, far right, on the Bund in downtown Shanghai. Photo courtesy Wilkinson.

Twenty-six cadets discussed research in nine areas of study in VMI’s Summer Undergraduate Research Institute – SURI – final presentations in August 2010. More than two dozen members of the VMI faculty served as mentors, and 11 more cadets are presenting their research this fall. The SURI program gives cadets the opportunity to conduct their own research outside the classroom, and many took full advantage, reaching out to the local community for survey subjects, participating in hands-on research off Post and outside the state of Virginia, and even taking their studies abroad. Some residents of Rockbridge County were surprised to find personality questions on a survey they were asked to complete for Cadet Noah Hagos’ civil and environmental engineering project. Called “Personality Affecting Travel Behavior,” the study attempted to confirm personality traits as relevant factors in predictions of driver behavior used in the planning, designing, constructing and operation of transportation facilities. Hagos, a rising second class cadet, said he and his mentor, Maj. Wakeel Idewu, collaborated to “find a way to approach that idea.” The two turned to VMI’s Psychology Department for survey questions. Hagos found that the higher the conscientiousness rating subjects had, the greater the impact traffic scenarios, such as weather-related dangerous driving conditions or special event congestion, would have on their decision making about timing and routes.


Although it was rewarding to see support for his hypothesis and to learn something about transportation engineering before he takes classes in that area, Hagos most enjoyed the one-on-one work with his mentor. “I had fun,” he said. “What I really liked was how Maj. Idewu really helped me out along the way, step by step, always humorously. … My research kind of proved that engineering is not all about the stereotypical math and science. … It’s about solving the problems of everyday life for people.” For Cadet Tom Schirra ’11, SURI was one in a series of academic opportunities, each facilitating the other. In a new summer study-abroad program in the People’s Republic of China led by history professor Col. Mark Wilkinson, Schirra, a history major, saw an opportunity to visit places he had always wanted to see. In the SURI award, Schirra saw a way to pay for the study-abroad experience. Both will contribute to the thesis that he plans to write during the current academic year for departmental honors. Though Schirra could not use Chinese language materials for his project, the time in China made resources available to him that he could not have accessed from VMI. “We could look at public memorials to battles and have conversations with people,” said Wilkinson, who has personal contacts with English-speaking professors and museum interpreters in China. As part of his research, Schirra interviewed several of them. “I got to look at cool newspaper articles written by people in the international settle-

ment during the battle,” said Schirra. Since the British governed the international settlement in Shanghai at that time, the newspapers were in English. Schirra had easy access to them at the Xujiahui Library, a research opportunity he said he would “remember and cherish always.” Schirra’s SURI presentation, “The Shanghai War of 1937: Then and Now,” featured his own photographs from China. He is already well on his way in drafting his honors thesis, which he will defend this spring. Although SURI participants spend much of their time with their mentors and research groups, seminars planned by mathematics professor Col. Vonda Walsh, chair of the summer institute, and modern languages instructor Patricia Hardin, director of operations, gave them a number of opportunities to gather together. The seminars included topics directly applicable to research, such as sampling techniques, as well as others designed to exhibit a range of presentation styles, such as a seminar by actors from the American Shakespeare Center in Staunton, Virginia. Walsh was pleased with this year’s SURI program. “What’s kind of unusual is that the students were so diverse in their research interests,” she said. SURI is organized by the Office of Undergraduate Research and sponsored by the Jackson-Hope Fund and the VMI Research Laboratories. Other sponsors were the URS Corp., the U.S. Department of Defense and VMI’s departments of civil and environmental engineering and biology.


ATHLETICS ATHLETICS Ballard ’10 Chosen by Colorado in Major League Baseball Draft VMI first baseman Jordan Ballard ’10 was selected by the Colorado Rockies in the 33rd round of the 2010 Major League Baseball (MLB) First-Year Player Draft on June 9, 2010. Ballard (Troy, Virginia/Monticello) was named First Team All-Big South Conference at first base during his senior year season, hitting a school-record 18 home runs while driving in a team-high 58 runs. He graduated as the school’s career leader with 41 home runs, while ranking second in slugging percentage (.569) and third in both total bases and fielding percentage in his career at VMI. His selection marked the sixth straight season that the Keydets have had a player drafted by an MLB franchise. He is the first VMI player to be selected by Colorado since David Groseclose ’95 was drafted by the team in 1995. “I was listening to the draft online at home with my family and got the call from a Colorado scout,” Ballard said. “All I wanted was an opportunity. It’s something that I’ve worked hard for 20 years to achieve. It started out as a dream, and I guess I’m getting ready to live it. My hard work is not going to stop now that I’ve been drafted. I want to make the best

of it and hopefully turn some heads. You never know: Mike Piazza was one of the best catchers ever, and he was one of the last picks taken in the draft.” In Big South play during the 2010 season, Ballard accounted for 32 RBIs in 27 contests, hitting 10 home runs with 70 total bases. He ranked among the top five in the league in home runs, RBIs and slugging percentage.

Ballard earned national acclaim during the season when he clubbed six home runs in five games, driving in 14 runs in 14 at bats in a week. He was named Louisville Slugger National Player of the Week for that run, which was part of a 25-game streak, during which he had hits in 24 contests, hitting .411 with 11 doubles, 11 home runs, 38 RBIs and a .822 slugging percentage.

Biagini ’10 Agrees to Free Agent Contract with Tampa Bay Former VMI third baseman Tanner Biagini ’10 has agreed to a free agent contract with the Tampa Bay Rays organization, according to information released on July 14, 2010. As the three-year starting third baseman for the Keydets, Biagini saw action in 175 contests during his career at the Institute. He posted a career batting average of .303, including .343 in his impressive sophomore campaign, and had the ninth-most doubles in school history (39) over his four years at VMI. “I’ve been down in Tampa for about a week,” stated Biagini. “They’ve been trying out players and wanted to make sure that I was healthy and in baseball shape. I’m excited to get to continue my playing career and thankful for everybody who has helped me get to this point.” During the aforementioned 2008 year, Biagini had a career-high 10 home runs and 46 runs batted in. He was named First Team All-State by the Virginia Sports Information Directors for his performance, which included tying for the fifth-most hits in school history (74). He also tied for the ninth-most hits in VMI single-season annals when he (Cont. next page.) 2010-Issue 4


ATHLETICS posted 71 in the 2009 season, in addition to hitting .317 with nine home runs. Biagini went 4 for 5 in the Keydets’ first-round Big South Championship win over Gardner-Webb that season, helping VMI to its first postseason victory since joining the conference. Biagini was drafted by Oakland in the 2009 MLB Draft (50th round), marking the second time he had been chosen (2006 – Los Angeles Dodgers), but he chose to remain at VMI for his senior season. Unfortunately, that campaign was cut short by injury but not before the senior hit .288 with a quartet of home runs and added nine doubles to his resume, as well. He also went 2 for 4 in the Keydets’ April 14 rout of then-#1 Virginia, helping VMI

to its first win over a top-ranked opponent. “I am proud of Tanner,” said VMI Head Coach Marlin Ikenberry ’95. “He is not only a great player but also a great leader. He exemplifies what it means to be a VMI man.” It is believed that Biagini will begin his pro career by reporting to the Gulf Coast League (GCL) Rays, who currently have a 9-11 record and are in third place in the GCL’s South Division. Biagini’s father, Greg, is a seven-year minor league veteran, who reached a high of Triple-A in 1979 before turning his hand to managing, when he won two Triple-A championships. He was also a major league hitting coach for Baltimore and served in various other roles in other organizations.

Anken Named New VMI Lacrosse Coach Brian Anken has been named the new head coach of VMI lacrosse, Athletic Director Donny White ’65 announced on July 30, 2010. “We are excited to move forward in our lacrosse program with the hiring of Brian Anken,” said White. “He has proven himself to be a winner at both Mars Hill and Lycoming [Colleges]. We [want] to compete for a conference championship, and I feel Coach Anken will put our program in a position to do that.” “It’s a tremendous honor to become a part of the VMI family,” offered Anken. “VMI is a special place that expects excellence both on and off the field and offers one of the most unique lacrosse experiences in the country. I’m excited for the opportunity and look forward to helping the VMI lacrosse program achieve a new level of success.” Hired by Lycoming College in July 2006, Anken implemented all offensive and defensive strategies for the team. He also supervised the assistant staff and was responsible for a large amount of fundraising which helped subsidize the team’s travel and equipment expenses. After posting a 4-10 record in his first year at the school, Anken’s team went 10-6 in 2008, earning him his second conference Coach of the Year honor (Mars Hill ’04). The team then went on to post records of 11-5 and 11-6 in his final two years, including a share of the conference regular season title in 2009, giving them a 32-17 mark over Anken’s final three seasons in Williamsport, Pennsylvania. Prior to working at Lycoming, Anken had been the head man at Mars Hill College in North Carolina, where he helped the team post a 5-1/2 game improvement in the standings during his final year, 2006. He earned conference Coach of the Year honors in 2004. He also was the founder and director of the Lions Lacrosse Camp and handled game and event management, as well. Anken broke into the coaching ranks with Pfeiffer in 2001, where he was the program’s top assistant. There, he was responsible for the defensive side of the ball, along with goalies. He also handled recruiting in Maryland, New York and New Jersey before leaving in 2001 to join the Rochester Institute of Technology, where again, he handled the defense and goalies. During his three years in Rochester, Anken was also an assistant to the school’s Athletic Association director of Development. In his career, Anken has coached a pair of NCAA Division III statistical champions. He also has mentored two conference Freshman of the Year players and one Player of the Year, and in seven seasons as a head coach, he has had 21 all-conference players and a single All-American. Anken is a member of the United States Intercollegiate Lacrosse Association’s (USILA) Rankings and All-American Committees, as well as being a part of the NCAA Regional Advisory Committee.


VMI Wins Fifth Straight Big South Sportsmanship Award The Virginia Military Institute has been named winner of the Big South Conference’s annual Institutional Sportsmanship Award for the 2009-10 athletic season. VMI received the honor for the fifth consecutive year – all five years of the award’s existence. The overall winner is determined based on the highest percentage of the maximum possible points an institution is capable of achieving for each team award. Following the conference championship, Big South student-athletes submit their votes, which are then tallied to identify the victor. VMI, which was honored with five team sportsmanship awards in 2009-10, was top among the Big South membership with a 35.64 percentage of the maximum points received in its sponsored league sports. Big South student-athletes voted for VMI as the top sportsmanship team in women’s cross country, football (co-winner), women’s indoor track and field, men’s outdoor track and field, and baseball. Liberty University finished second with a 30.87 percentage, followed by Gardner-Webb University at 26.58 percent. Editor’s Note: Unless stated otherwise, the articles and photos in the Athletics section of the Alumni Review are produced by the VMI Sports Information Office.


FOUNDATION, INC. VMIVMI FOUNDATION, INC. Message from the Foundation CEO: Fiscal Year 2010 Report by Brian S. Crockett

On June 30, 2010, the VMI Foundation finished its work The VMI Foundation also built stronger relations with anfor Fiscal Year 2010. other important part of the VMI family: our future alumni, Over the last 12 months, the VMI Foundation has en- the members of the Corps of Cadets. Through our Barracks joyed success in fundraising on behalf of VMI. This year, Program, we brought to these young men and women alumni, faculty, staff, families and friends gave $11.7 mil- information about the critical role of private financial lion in gifts to the Foundation, money that will be used to support at VMI and the many benefits that they and their maintain and improve VMI’s extraordinary education. Of Brother Rats receive from the VMI Foundation, Keydet Club that amount, these donors gave more than and Alumni Association. Fruits of this effort $2.5 million of it in the form of unrestricted were evident in the fact that the class of 2010 money that VMI can use to support its most made a handsome graduation gift that came pressing needs. Combined with the results of from a campaign conceived and run by the the work of our colleagues in the VMI Keydet leadership of the class. [See an article about Club, the VMI family donated more than $15 the class’s gift in this section of the Review.] million in support of VMI. With such a strong beginning, I am confident All of us at the VMI Foundation – indeed, that these young men and women will take all of us on Post – appreciate this generous their places in the front rank of those alumni financial support of the Institute and its who provide VMI the resources that it needs Corps of Cadets because of the exceptional to excel in the future. importance of private money to VMI. FinanIn order to make sure that we are serving cial support from the VMI family provides all of our constituents, the VMI Foundation a margin of excellence for some programs, also forged stronger connections with the and it is completely critical for the survival on-Post community, especially the faculty. Crockett of others. The source of the vast majority The men and women in our academic deof the scholarships that allow hundreds of partments are among the most important young people to accept VMI’s challenges and, people in the lives of many cadets, and it is thus, to prepare themselves for lives of leadership, success vital we understand the challenges that they face as they and service is private support. Put another way, without educate our cadets and know of their many successes in such money, VMI would not be the college of which we teaching and inspiring the Corps. Armed with this inforare so proud today. mation, our gift officers will be able to make even stronger Coupled with the funds generated by endowments es- cases for support of VMI and its remarkable education. tablished by generous donors and carefully managed by In this new academic year, we can be certain that the the VMI Foundation, the money provided by our donors Institute will face new challenges as it strives to maintain in FY 2010 will enable the Keydet Club and the VMI the quality of its education and to improve the facilities Foundation to give VMI $17 million in the forthcom- and programs that sustain that quality. For example, all ing academic year, an amount equal to 25.5% of VMI’s indications are that state support of higher education will budget. It also will mean $7.4 million in scholarship aid be static or might decline. to deserving cadets. You – as a member of the VMI family – can be certain that Last year, the VMI Foundation continued its ongoing the leaders and staff of the VMI Foundation will remain efforts to improve the means by which it performs its mis- intensely dedicated to the Foundation’s mission of supsion of supporting the Institute and the Corps of Cadets. porting and advancing the Institute. We are committed to The volunteers and staff of the Foundation worked in even making sure that the young men and women who come closer collaboration with the VMI Alumni Association and to VMI in order to be educated in a way that is different the VMI Keydet Club. In this way, we have enhanced the ways from so many other colleges and universities receive the we engage our alumni in order to bring them ever closer education for which they came to Lexington. to each other and the Institute. By doing so, we expect that Again, if you made a gift or commitment in support of their interest in VMI’s success and their commitment to VMI in Fiscal Year 2010, I thank you for it. I ask that you sustaining it will deepen. consider continuing that support in the new fiscal year.

2010-Issue 4


VMI FOUNDATION, INC. VMI Foundation Selects Donald M. Wilkinson ’61 to Receive Distinguished Service Award On Aug. 1, 2010, Walter C. Perrin II ’62, president of the VMI Foundation, Inc., announced that the VMI Foundation Board of Trustees has selected Donald M. Wilkinson ’61 as the latest recipient of the VMI Foundation’s highest honor, the Distinguished Service Award. Wilkinson will receive the award at the annual Founders Day Convocation in VMI’s Cameron Hall on Nov. 11, 2010. Currently, Wilkinson is the chairman and chief investment officer of Wilkinson O’Grady, a global investment-management firm in New York City, which he co-founded in 1972 and for which he served as its president from 1977-94. The firm manages global portfolios for individuals, families, trusts, charitable foundations, businesses and other organizations, as well as provides investment advice for trustees. After graduating with a bachelor of arts degree in English from VMI, Wilkinson spent a year in Spain, studying at the University of Madrid and then served as an air-defense artillery officer in the U.S. Army in Germany from 1962-64. Wilkinson entered the world of investing after receiving his master of business administration degree from the University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business in 1966. His performance as a student at the Darden School earned him membership in The Raven Society, an academic honor society at the University of Virginia. In the six years prior to co-founding Wilkinson O’Grady, he was a partner of New Court Securities Corporation, vice president of Tsai Management & Research, and Latin American debt analyst and portfolio manager of the Keystone International Equity Fund. That he has achieved so much in the realm of finance probably does not surprise his Brother Rats. His history in the Bomb describes him as “V.M.I.’s John Maynard Keynes” who, the history promised, could be found in Scott Shipp 178

Hall, “sitting at a desk which must have come from the Chase-Manhattan Bank … reading the market reports and rapidly initialing papers.” Indeed, his informal picture in the Bomb shows him doing something very much like that with a copy of Forbes prominently displayed. Of course, some Brother Rats might have predicted that he would have pursued a career in journalism or publishing, because as a cadet, Wilkinson had a definite literary bent. He was the editor of the 1961 edition of the Bomb and The Bullet, a member of the staff of The Cadet, and the editor of his class’s Ring Figure magazine. He also was a member of his class’s Ring Committee and Ring Figure Committee and was involved in the Timmons Music Society and the R.E. Dixon English Society. He was first battalion’s sergeant major, and as a first classman, he was a cadet captain and commanded Alpha Company. Wilkinson has been involved in civic and charitable affairs, including serving as the president of New York Hospital’s Children’s Blood Foundation from 197883 and as a member of the Battle Abbey Council of the Virginia Historical Society. Presently, he is a trustee of the Confederate Memorial Literary Society. From 1995-98, he sponsored a scholar program at East Harlem School Exodus House, and he established the Spirit of Pioneer Women Award at the Cowgirl Museum & Hall of Fame in Fort Worth, Texas. He also is a dedicated supporter of the Darden School of Business. He was the chairman and vice president of its board of trustees from 2001-03 and 1999-2001, respectively, and he was a trustee of The Darden Foundation from 1992-2003 and served on the Foundation’s investment committee. From 1996-98, he also was the chairman of The Campaign for Darden, the $100 million fundraising effort for the Darden School. It is to VMI, however, that Wilkinson

Wilkinson ’61 has been most devoted. In the late 1980s, he served as a volunteer with VMI’s Sesquicentennial Challenge, and in 1989, he joined the VMI Foundation’s Board of Trustees, serving until 1997. He received an appointment to VMI’s Board of Visitors in 1999 and served on that body for eight years. From 2000-05, he was the vice chairman of VMI’s capital campaign, Reveille: A Call to Excel, an effort that raised more than $200 million for the Institute. He also was instrumental in the founding of the Jackson-Hope Fund in 2002 and has served as a member of the fund’s board of overseers ever since. In April 2009, Wilkinson addressed the Corps as part of the John W. and Jane M. Roberts Lecture Series, a program that brings to Post leaders in American free enterprise. Speaking at Marshall Hall, Wilkinson described the sources of the current financial crisis. More meaningful to him, however, was the speech that he gave to the Corps on March 20, 2007, about the life of his Brother Rat and his friend, Jonathan Daniels, after whom VMI’s Jonathan Daniels Humanitarian Award is named. When asked for his reaction upon being told that the VMI Foundation would present him with the (Cont. next page.) VMI ALUMNI REVIEW

VMI FOUNDATION, INC. Distinguished Service Award, Wilkinson joked, “My first thought was, ‘How many people have turned this down?’” Continuing on a more serious vein, he said, “VMI is such an extraordinary institution, especially in this day and age. To be honored by it, therefore, is a wonderful achievement. It is an unexpected honor, and I could not be more pleased and proud. “One of the pleasures of working for VMI is that you associate with remark-

ably dedicated and civil people. To receive this award and, so, to be counted among them, is a very special honor. The chance of receiving recognition like this is not why you work on VMI’s behalf, but it is awfully nice to be included in these circles.” The VMI Foundation’s president, Walter C. Perrin II ’62, said of Wilkinson, “Donald Wilkinson is a stunning example of service to the Institute. For more than 20

years, he has worked tirelessly and selflessly for the improvement of VMI and the education it provides its cadets. Considering the demands of his job, his consistent generosity with his time and his expertise is truly astounding. I have never known him to turn down any request to help the Institute. He richly deserves the Distinguished Service Award, and I am eagerly looking forward to presenting it to him on Founders Day.”

Class of 2010 Makes Graduation Gift At the Graduation Parade on May 14, 2010, the class of 2010 continued a custom started by the class of 2006 and presented its graduation gift to VMI: $6,942.42. Although the class of 2010 was carrying on a custom begun four years ago, what made this gift different is the way in which the class raised it. In the past, although some cadets donated money for the gifts, the bulk of them were the money that classes had left over from funds that were established to support Ring Figure. This class, however, decided to take another road and to raise the customary gift entirely through a fundraising campaign within the class. “The leadership of the class of 2010 – its president, Sloan Burns; Bryant Youngblood Jr., the vice president; and Edward Desch III, the historian – decided that they wanted to engage their Brother Rats in an entirely different manner,” recalled Patrick Webb, the VMI Foundation’s vice president for Annual & Reunion Giving. “Their idea was to engage their Brother Rats directly and, by doing so, acquaint them with the importance of private money to VMI and the long and proud tradition of alumni support of VMI. They asked for the Foundation’s help in this effort, and we were ready to give it.” The VMI Foundation’s readiness to lend assistance to the class of 2010’s campaign was part of the Foundation’s broader “Barracks Program.” This program was born out of the knowledge that, to no small extent, the private money provided by VMI alumni in the past few decades has been the foundation of VMI’s many successes. Furthermore, as the commonwealth of Virginia’s budget undergoes further constraints, the need for increasing financial support from VMI alumni becomes more imperative. The leadership of the VMI Foundation determined that one way to ensure a healthy level of alumni participation into the future is to educate the Institute’s future alumni – the men and women of the Corps of Cadets – about the importance of private support to VMI’s cadets and the tradition of alumni 2010-Issue 4

support at VMI within the Corps of Cadets. The VMI Foundation, therefore, now engages cadets throughout their four years in Barracks through a full series of events aimed at educating and encouraging the Corps of Cadets to emulate alumni in their support of the Institute’s pursuit of excellence that begins in the earliest days of each academic year. This marks a change from the situation in the not-so-distant past in which cadets’ initial direct contact with the notion of fundraising at VMI in general and with the VMI Foundation in particular occurred immediately before Finals, a time when most of them are not thinking of anything but graduation. The Barracks Program accomplishes its mission through a specially tiered process beginning with the fourth class’s Breakout and ending with issuing of the “Pull Forward Challenge” to the rising first class. For example, this past spring, the VMI Foundation hosted two events on Post. The first was a dinner for the class of 2010 on March 4. At this dinner, a trustee of the VMI Foundation, Danny Chu ’83, presented some facts about private support at VMI, including the number of cadets who receive some form of financial assistance from the VMI Foundation (787). Six days later, Gen. David Maddox ’60, USA (Ret), another Foundation trustee, addressed the Class of 2012 at a dinner. Here, too, he educated cadets on the critical importance of private support to VMI and every member of the Corps. Both men concluded their presentations by urging the cadets to consider the value of the support they have received and to consider doing the same for those who follow them into Barracks. “Under the leadership of John Wranek III ’85, the assistant director of Annual & Reunion Giving at the VMI Foundation, and with the involvement of such alumni as Mr. Chu and Gen. Maddox, this program has done wonders with cadets,” said Brian Crockett, chief executive officer of the VMI Foundation. “Cadets are learning about the importance of private money at VMI and the boundless generosity of VMI alumni in support of the Institute and them. (Cont. next page.) Moreover, they are 179

VMI FOUNDATION, INC. being disabused of the misinformation about private support and the work of the VMI Alumni Agencies.” The success of the class of 2010’s fund drive reflects the effectiveness of the Barracks Program. The Brother Rats of the Institute’s newest alumni class presented the aforementioned gift at the Graduation Parade – and then went on to keep giving. At the end of Fiscal Year 2010 (June 30) when this effort formally closed, the class of 2010 had raised more than $1,000 more – a grand total of $8,097.42 from 40 Brother Rats or 13.4% of the class.

The success of this effort by the class of 2010 belongs, of course, to the leadership of this class whose drive and commitment engaged the entire class and to the Brother Rats who decided to follow the example of thousands of their fellow alumni and give to VMI. If they continue to give as they have, this class certainly will become leaders in support of the Institute and, in doing so, not only help VMI maintain its extraordinary place in American higher education, but also provide an excellent example for other alumni, younger and older.

Photo at right: At the Graduation Parade on May 14, 2010, the class of 2010 continued a custom started by the class of 2006 and presented its graduation gift to VMI. The class raised the gift of $6,942.42 entirely through a two-month campaign within its ranks. Three officers of the class – Edward Desch III, historian, second from left; Sloan Burns, president, center; and Bryant Youngblood Jr., vice president, second from right – presented the gift. Receiving it on behalf of VMI and the VMI Alumni Agencies, respectively, were Gen. J.H. Binford Peay III ’62, USA (Ret), far right, and the VMI Foundation’s chief executive officer, Brian Crockett, far left.

Editor’s Note: Unless stated otherwise, all articles in the Foundation section of the Alumni Review are provided by the VMI Foundation.

On June 5, 2010, Brian Crockett, the VMI Foundation’s chief executive officer, center, served as commencement speaker for Massanutten Military Academy (MMA), a military high school in Woodstock, Virginia. MMA’s current head of school, Craig Jones ’80, invited Crockett to be the speaker. For Crockett, this speech marked a return to MMA, where he spent a post-graduate year as a cadet from 1977-78. As a cadet, he played football, served as a cadet captain and company commander in its Corps of Cadets, and received numerous awards for leadership. Photo by Massanutten Military Academy.



VMI FOUNDATION, INC. George H. Barnett ’45, DDS

Memorial Gifts The VMI Foundation, Inc., and the VMI Keydet Club, Inc., received the following gifts in memory of deceased alumni, parents and friends during the time frame of May 31, 2010, through July 31, 2010.

Mr. John L. Rowe Jr. ’66 and Mrs. Rowe

Mr. Robert M. Bartenstein ’43 Mrs. Robert M. Bartenstein

Mr. J. Irving Beale III ’44 Mrs. J. Irving Beale III

Mr. Nathaniel Beaman III ’46 Mrs. Donna M. Adams Mr. William H. Alford Mrs. Frances W. Arehart Mr. and Mrs. John R. Baldwin Mr. Fred E. Banister Jr. ’71 Mr. Warren J. Bryan ’71 and Mrs. Bryan Mr. Peter R. Candler ’71 The Chambers Family - Bill & Pat, Tim and Melissa and Todd & Terezia Mr. William C. Collier ’72 and Mrs. Collier Mr. Robert R. Copty ’70 and Mrs. Copty Ms. Susan H. Edward Mr. Thomas H. Forsyth Mr. James D. Gearhart ’71 Mr. William L. Ginder ’71 Brig. Gen. Robert L. Green ’67 and Mrs. Green Mr. Erwin Hanke ’71 Mr. Robert A. Haywood ’71 Mr. W.M. Jeffress Jr., Esq. ’68 Mr. Van E. Jolissaint ’71 Mr. James R. Kelly ’71 and Mrs. Kelly Mr. David H. Kennedy ’71 Mr. Samuel H. Kirby Jr. ’71 Maj. Carlyle M. Lash ’70, USA (Ret) Mr. Hunter H. Mays Jr. ’71 Mr. Walter C. Perrin II ’62 and Mrs. Perrin Mrs. J. Robert Philpott Jr. Mr. Stephen C. Price ’71 Mr. Bruce Arthur Rush ’71 Mr. Thomas G. Slater Jr. ’66 Mr. Kenneth E. Swain Col. and Mrs. Douglas E. Taylor Col. Spencer C. Tucker ’59, USA (Ret) VMI Class of 1971 Mr. and Mrs. Dennis L. Wade Col. Patrick F. Webb, USA (Ret)

Mr. Alfred S. Aldrich Jr. ’67 Mr. John J. Sheeran ’67

Mr. Carter R. Anderson Jr. ’67 Mr. John J. Sheeran ’67

Douglas E. Andrews ’53, MD Mr. David E. Wheeler ’80

R. Phillip Ash ’65, PhD Mr. Bruce E. Herczogh ’65

G. Russell Aylor Jr. ’61, DDS Mr. Everette A. Powell Jr. ’55

Mr. Bruce H. Baker ’58 Mr. Bruce Haldeman II ’58

2010-Issue 4

Mr. Nathaniel Beaman IV ’74

1st Lt. William B. Bell ’67, USA Mr. John J. Sheeran ’67

Mrs. Lucy D. Beyer

Col. Thomas W. Davis ’64

Capt. Thomas G. Blair Jr. ’69, USA Mr. Bruce O. Beaulieu ’69 Col. James D. Polley IV ’68, USA (Ret)

Mr. W.R. Blandford Jr. ’69 Class of 1969

Mr. Edwin H. Bodenheim II ’71 Mr. Kirk Roselle Murray ’71

Maj. Jerry L. Borries ’65, USAF Mrs. Jerry L. Borries Howard

Mr. Jerry Borst ’59

Lt. Col. Michael M. Irvine Jr. ’59, USA (Ret)

Mr. Whirley Boxley ’60

Mr. Bruce Haldeman II ’58

Mr. Harvie N. Butler, Jr. ’63 Mr. Michael T. Smither ’63

Mr. Charles F. Byrd Sr. ’55

Lt. Col. David F. Woolwine ’55, USAF (Ret)

Mrs. Jo Anne Cadugan Mr. Richard H. Cadugan

Mr. George A. Caldwell Jr. ’44

Mr. Robert P. Jones Jr. ’44 and Mrs. Jones Ms. Amy N. Thomas

Mr. Michael L. Cantrell ’62 Mr. Joe T. Howard ’51

Mr. Owen S. Chambers ’65

Mr. W. Gregory Robertson ’65 Mr. William F. Ryan Jr. ’65 Lt. Col. Evert S. Thomas III ’65, USA (Ret) Mr. F. Henry Wittel Jr. ’65

Mr. I. Lee Chapman III ’65 Mr. John S. Cockey Jr. ’63

Mr. Billy S. Clark ’43 Mrs. Billy S. Clark

Mr. Russ Cohen Ben P. McCarley ’47, MD

William H. Cox ’39, MD Mrs. Mary C. Bland Mr. Floyd D. Gottwald Jr. ’43 and Mrs. Gottwald

Mr. Archibald M. Crawford Jr. ’51 Mr. John L. Nichols ’51

Mr. Clarence E. Curtis Jr. Mrs. Allen R. Potts

Mr. Joseph G. Daher ’47 Ben P. McCarley ’47, MD

Dr. Martin Damsky Harvey C. Woodruff III ’64, DDS and Mrs. Woodruff

Dr. Cole Davis Mr. Anthony E. Waddell ’62

Deceased Brother Rats Class of 1969 Ms. Dreama K. Hammond

Col. Herbert N. Dillard Jr. ’34 William C. Ruffin Jr. ’48B, MD

Sgt. Ryan E. Doltz ’00, ANG Mr. Eric L. Ham ’01

William L. Driskill Jr. ’50B, MD James A. Smith III ’60, MD and Mrs. Smith

Kenneth G. Ederle ’61, PhD Raine M. Gilbert ’61, PhD

Cadet John A. Evans ’13 Mr. Warren J. Bryan ’71 Ms. Elizabeth L. Evans Mr. Robert J. Evans ’80 Mr. and Mrs. Robert E. Meehan

Col. John M. Fain ’32, USAF Mrs. John M. Fain

Dr. James E. Favareau Jr. Molly Poole Wolfe

Lt. Russell C. Flournoy ’99, USN Mr. Gregory G. McDearmon ’99

Dr. Dean Foster Mr. John S. Cockey, Jr. ’63

Lt. Arthur L. Galloway Jr. ’69, USA Mr. Bruce O. Beaulieu ’69

Mr. J. Carl Garrison Jr. ’47 Ms. Twyla Melton Mr. Augustus Robbins III ’47

James Samuel Gillespie III ’94 Col. and Mrs. George Piegari


VMI FOUNDATION, INC. Mr. John C. Reed ’59 Mrs. DeWitt S. Worrell

Mr. Dennis W. Graves ’67 Mr. John J. Sheeran ’67

Col. Oscar W. Gupton Mr. Kirk Roselle Murray ’71

Lt. Col. Carroll B. Guthrie III ’67, USA Mr. John J. Sheeran ’67

Mr. J. Addison Hagan Jr. ’42 Mr. R. Palmer Hamilton ’85

Mr. H. Roy Hammond Ms. Dreama K. Hammond Mrs. Leroy D. Hammond

Mr. Frank E. Hancock Mr. Bruno R. Viani

Mr. Richard A. Hein ’59 Lt. Col. Michael M. Irvine Jr. ’59, USA (Ret)

Mr. Robert L. Hickerson ’58 Mr. Eric J. Fygi ’63

Mrs. Susan Hickerson Mr. Eric J. Fygi ’63 Mr. Michael T. Smither ’63

Mr. B. Richard Hill ’68 Mr. Frank B. Louthan Jr. ’41

Mr. O. Halsey Hill ’39 Mrs. O. Halsey Hill

James O. Hodgkin III ’43, DDS Mr. Vincent J. Thomas ’43 and Mrs. Thomas

Mr. J. Clyde Hooker Jr. ’42 Ms. Ann H. Austin Mr. John K. Boardman Mr. and Mrs. Austin S. Bridgeforth III Mr. Warren J. Bryan ’71 and Mrs. Bryan Mrs. James L. Dorrier Mrs. T.F. Gilliam The Honorable Elmon T. Gray ’46 Mr. and Mrs. Irving M. Groves Jr. Hancock & Moore Mr. Frank G. Louthan Jr. ’41 and Mrs. Louthan Col. John M. Patton ’42, USAF (Ret) Mr. and Mrs. William R. Reynolds Mrs. Andrew B. Stanley Mr. Thomas B. Stanley III Mr. John Harold Stone Jr. ’56 Mr. Henry C. Sutherland ’42 Mrs. Susan Stanley Taylor Mr. Harry H. Warner ’57 Mr. Charles P. Wilson ’42

Capt. Frederick W. Hope Jr. Mr. R. Palmer Hamilton ’85


Mrs. Evelyn Hotchkiss

Mr. John J. Kellam ’30

Mrs. Allen R. Potts

Ms. Elizabeth K. Williams

Ms. Elizabeth C. Irby

Mrs. Daniel E. Kennedy Sr.

Ms. Margaret I. Clement Mr. and Mrs. John F. Kay Jr.

Col. Kurt W. Iversen ’85 Mr. R. Palmer Hamilton ’85

Mr. Albert H. Jacoby Jr. ’71 Mrs. Agnes C. Jacoby

Lt. James R. Johnson ’65, USA Mr. Richard Bernstein ’65

Mr. Harry F. Jones ’56 Mr. James M. Dillard ’56

Col. Royce E. Jones ’55 Lt. Col. David F. Woolwine ’55, USAF (Ret)

Mr. Dan L. Jordan ’67 Mr. John J. Sheeran ’67

The Reverend J.H. Jordan Jr. ’51 Mr. John C. Allen ’62 and Mrs. Allen Mr. and Mrs. Frederick P. Aucamp Mr. Henry L. Baxley Jr. ’51 Mrs. Jane K. Bray Mr. and Mrs. Ted Broecker Mr. and Mrs. W.R. Drury Mr. Elisha J. Evans Jr. ’51 Mr. John S. Gray ’51 Mr. and Mrs. Angus M. Green Mr. and Mrs. P. Porcher Gregg Jr. Col. B.F. Harmon III ’49B, USA (Ret) Mr. and Mrs. Reno S. Harp III Mr. Benjamin Huger II ’56 Mr. C. Edward May Jr. ’51 A. Dennis Merklinger ’62, DMD Mr. William M. Noftsinger ’49A and Mrs. Noftsinger Col. J. Robert Nolley Jr. ’51 USAF (Ret) Mr. and Mrs. Paul W. Parcells Mr. Victor Parks III ’51 Col. Daniel G. Smaw III ’49B and Mrs Smaw Mr. Shane D. Sullivan ’85 Mr. John K. Taylor ’50B Mr. John A. Trinder Mr. Harry C. Valentine Jr. ’55 Mr. Jacob H. Wamsley II ’51 Henry G. White Jr. ’54, MD and Mrs. White

Mr. Samuel P. Jordan Jr. ’64 Samuel P. Jordan Jr. ’64 Family - Mary Jo, Jo Ellen Jordan Able & Samuel P. III

Mr. David N. Kaliski ’64 Mr. Alan E. Kaliski ’69

Mr. R. Patrick Kearney ’66 Mr. Howard M. Lloyd Jr. ’66

Bechtel National Inc. Mr. and Mrs. Bob Farnsworth Mr. and Mrs. Robert Jenkins Mrs. Merrill F. Prugh Mr. and Mrs. Edmund R. Simms

Capt. John W. Kennedy ’69, USAF Mr. Bruce O. Beaulieu ’69 Mr. Richard T. Farnsworth

Lt. Col. D.G. Kestner ’53, USAF Col. Clement L. Woodward ’53, USAR (Ret)

Col. Mell J. Lacy Jr. ’63, USAF Anonymous

Mr. James C. Lamb III ’44 Class of 1944

Maj. Stanley E. Leck ’79, USA Mr. Gregory M. Leck ’77

Mr. Gregory C. Lee ’68 Col. James D. Polley IV ’68, USA (Ret)

Mr. Robert E. Lee ’65 Mr. Harry J. Bartosik Jr. ’65 Mrs. Robert E. Lee Mr. W. Gregory Robertson ’65 Mr. William F. Ryan Jr. ’65 Mr. F. Henry Wittel Jr. ’65

Mr. Lawrence R. Lenz ’69 Mr. Gary W. Mackey ’69

Liviv Librescu Mr. Alan S. Baumgartner ’57

Mr. Frank A. Liddell Jr. ’49B Ms. Dorothy J. Alcorn Bluewater Music Services Corporation Mr. Warren J. Bryan ’71 and Mrs. Bryan Mrs. Rebecca Clearman Mr. and Mrs. Ross T. Eastman Mr. W. Brownlee Ferguson Ms. Mary Sapp Fischer FTI Industries, Inc. – Fellow Board Members:Noel F. Holub, John A. Schrader, Baird W. Walker and Tom M. Blanton The Honorable Elmon T. Gray ’46 Ms. Gerry D. Greer Mr. Llewellyn P. Haden Jr. Mr. William A. Hallett Jr. ’47 Ms. Brittany Hamlin Col. B.F. Harmon III ’49B, USA (Ret) Dr. Hedley C. Hichens Mrs. Elizabeth Walter Keeney Mr. Ernest A. Knipp Mr. Frank G. Louthan Jr. ’41 and Mrs. Louthan Mr. and Mrs. Joseph E. Merritt


VMI FOUNDATION, INC. Mr. William M. Noftsinger ’49A and Mrs. Noftsinger Mr. Grover C. Outland Jr. ’49B and Mrs. Outland Mr. James L. Patton ’49B Mrs. Eliza L. Randall Mrs. Dudley C. Sharp Jr. Col. Daniel G. Smaw III ’49B, USA (Ret) and Mrs. Smaw Mr. E.C. Wilson Jr. Dr. and Mrs. Barry P. Wood Mr. D. Mark Wright

Lt. Joseph M. Lingle Jr. ’65, USA

Maj. David W. Arensdorf ’65, USA (Ret)

Mr. Thomas P. Lohouse ’65 Anonymous

Mr. Frank F. Lumpkin ’79 Mr. James D. Elliott Jr. ’79 Mr. W. Massie Meredith ’79

Mr. and Mrs. Harry A. Lund Mark E. Lund ’87, MD

Mr. Joseph E. Martin Jr. ’72 Mr. and Mrs. Philip T. Jacobs

Mr. Michael W. Maupin ’59 Mr. John C. Reed ’59

S. Christa McAuliffe

Mr. L. Neil Steverson ’70

Mrs. William G. McClure Jr. Mr. Claude A. Abernathy Sr. ’63 Mr. G.T. Durvin Jr. ’70 Mr. William O. Nelson Jr. ’56 Ms. Catherine P. Northen Ms. Marsha S. Shuler Mr. J.V. Taylor Jr. ’64

Lt. Alan M. McLachlen ’81, USN Mr. H. Clarkson Meredith III ’81

Mr. Thomas C. McLeod ’43 Mr. James A. McLeod ’72

Mr. Charles E. McNeillie ’66 Mr. Howard M. Lloyd Jr. ’66

Mr. Thaddeus J. Meler ’48A Mr. Thomas R. Meler ’62

Maj. Joseph G. Mixson ’57, USMC

J.J. Kleinschuster ’64, PhD

Mr. Jeffrey J. Morgan ’80

Mr. C. Fred Rosenbaum ’58

Col. Thomas W. Davis ’64 Mrs. DeWitt S. Worrell

Mr. John L. Morgan ’55 Lt. Col. David F. Woolwine ’55, USAF (Ret)

Robert L. Morrison ’40, MD Mrs. Robert L. Morrison

Mr. H. Albert Nance Jr. ’67 Mr. John J. Sheeran ’67 Mr. L. Neil Steverson ’70

Col. William L. Nelson ’51, USAF Mr. William A. Hallett Jr. ’47

Mr. Michael C. Northrop ’86 Northrop Family

Col. Edwin O’Connor Jr. ’40, USA Mrs. Edwin O’Connor Jr.

Mr. Daniel J. Ogle ’63 Anonymous Mrs. Forrest O. Burgdorf Mr. John S. Cockey Jr. ’63 Mrs. Daniel J. Ogle

Mr. George A. Pace ’31 Mr. and Mrs. George F. Pace

Mr. Robert N. Petrola ’71 Mr. Kirk Roselle Murray ’71

Mr. E. Keith Phillips Jr. ’43 Mr. and Mrs. William L. Hudgins Mr. Vincent J. Thomas ’43 and Mrs. Thomas

Mr. J. Robert Philpott Jr. ’68 Mr. William G. Davis ’68 and Mrs. Davis

Lt. Terry L. Plunk ’88, USA Mr. C. Michael Thacker ’68

Mr. Walter C. Plunkett Jr. ’45 Mrs. Elizabeth P. Williams

Mrs. Leslie C. Powell Mr. Joe T. Howard ’51

1st Sgt. Luke J. Mercardante (Honorary ’07)

Merrill F. Prugh ’65, MD

Dr. H. Clarkson Meredith Jr.

Mr. William H. Pugh III ’67

William W. Miller ’54, MD

Mr. Michael J. Ragland ’69

Maj. W.S. Shea ’55, USMC (Ret) Mr. H. Clarkson Meredith III ’81

Mrs. William W. Miller

Mr. W. Clark Minnigerode ’92 Mr. David T. Massie ’92

2010-Issue 4

Col. Herbert E. Ritchey

Mrs. Joseph G. Mixson

Mrs. Merrill F. Prugh

Mr. John R. Hilsabeck Jr. ’67

Mr. Bruce O. Beaulieu ’69

Mr. William M. Riddick III ’65 Anonymous

Col. Ralph J. Tremaglio III ’85, USA

Jay R. Sculley ’62, PhD

Col. Thomas W. Davis ’64 Mr. Walter H. Hylton III ’62 Mr. H. Clarkson Meredith III ’81 Col. and Mrs. George Piegari Mr. John E. Woodward III ’78

Mr. Everett Shepherd Jr. ’48B Mr. Anthony E. Waddell ’62

Jeff Shore

Mr. Michael T. Smither ’63

Mr. Walter W. Shorter ’53 Mrs. Walter W. Shorter

The Reverend Carl Simmons Jr. ’47 Mrs. Carl Simmons Jr.

Mr. William L. Stagg III ’44 Mr. Paul W. Stagg ’48A

Selden H. Stephens Jr. ’49B, MD Mrs. Nelson T.Overton

Col. William J. Stockwell

Col. Michael M. Strickler ’71

Mr. Robert E. Strauss Jr. ’63 Anonymous

Mr. James M. Strickland Jr. ’51

Mr. John S. Gray ’51 Mr. Joe T. Howard ’51 Mr. Harry T. Jones ’63 Mr. C. Edward May Jr. ’51 Col. J. Robert Nolley Jr. ’51, USAF (Ret) Mr. John J. Ross III ’51 and Mrs. Ross Shenandoah Valley Regional OT/PT Program Mrs. Kathryn Undercoffer Mr. Bruce C. Wackelin Mr. Jacob H. Wamsley II ’51

Maj. Paul R. Syverson III ’93, USA Mr. Bowlman T. Bowles III ’87

Mr. Daniel M. Thornton Jr. ’43

Mr. Warner Moore III Mr. and Mrs. Joseph R. Newell Jr. Mr. Grover C. Outland Jr. ’49B and Mrs. Outland Sentara Healthcare (Gift from David Bernd, CEO and the Senior Management Team)

Mr. John A. Tipton IV ’56 Mr. Bruce Haldeman II ’58

Mr. Eugene N. Touchstone ’67 Chris and Jen Burton


VMI FOUNDATION, INC. Michael Burton Mr. John J. Sheeran ’67

Mr. Dan M. Tucker ’44 Mrs. Rose Tucker

Mr. Walter L. Tucker ’45 John Williams ’45 and Mary Williams

Mr. Andrew L. Turner, Jr. ’40 Mrs. Robert G. Bailey, Jr.

Col. Godfrey W. Updike Jr. ’69, USA Class of 1969 Mr. Gary W. Mackey ’69 Graham Y. Moore III ’69, PhD

Mr. Horace W. Vaughan ’43 Mr. Vincent J. Thomas ’43 and Mrs. Thomas

Mrs. Evelyn Viani Mr. Bruno R. Viani

Mr. Joseph T. Warren ’44 Mrs. Joseph T. Warren

Dr. Joseph H. Way F. Allen Cavedo ’47, DDS

Mr. Frederick B. Webster 1913 Mr. and Mrs. George F. Pace

Col. Siegfried Weing Mr. Kirk Roselle Murray ’71

Mr. Larry W. Wertz ’67 Mr. John J. Sheeran ’67

Mr. Paul Wessinger Mr. David R. Wessinger

Mr. Edward E. West Jr. ’49A Mr. Charles W. Nuttycombe ’54

2nd Lt. Mark C. Whittier ’66, USMC Mr. John R. Hilsabeck Jr. ’67

Mr. Charles S. Willcox Jr. ’43 Mr. Vincent J. Thomas ’43 and Mrs. Thomas

Lt. David L. Williams ’91, USN Maj. Kendall D. Bailey ’91, USMC Cmdr. Gregory L. Booth ’91, USN Lt. Col. William T. Brennan ’91, USA

Mr. Donald G. Wise ’61 C. Alison Drescher ’61, DDS

Mr. DeWitt S. Worrell ’62 Mr. Richard L. Anderson Mr. Charles W. Beale III ’64 2nd Lt. Karsten G. Bloomstrom ’10, USAF


Mr. Kevin M. Cox ’10 Mr. Randolph M. Hamner ’62 2nd Lt. Alexander P. Houser ’10, USA Mr. and Mrs. Jeff Houser Mr. Sean K. McCoy ’10 Col. and Mrs. George Piegari Mr. Daniel L. Welsh ’10 Mrs. DeWitt S. Worrell

Mr. John M. Wray Jr. ’42 Mr. John J. Beall Mr. and Mrs. Philip Blaida Mr. Ronald M. Bryan ’55 Mr. David L. Camper ’58 Mr. Eugene Carr Jr. Mr. Charles C. Chewning ’42 and Mrs. Chewning Mr. and Mrs. Louis C. Collier Mrs. James L. Dorrier Mr. Floyd D. Gottwald Jr. ’43 Mr. John S. Gray ’51 Jack and Mary Hodge Mrs. James Hume Jr. Mr. Edward H. Jones ’42 Mr. Ernest L. Keppel ’42 Mr. John C. Lanford ’52 Mr. Charles B. Miller ’42 Mr. and Mrs. George F. Pace Col. John M. Patton ’42, USAF (Ret) Ms. Anne W. Quicke Mr. Wortham A. Spilman Jr. ’42 and Mrs. Spilman Mr. H. Kenneth Stone Mr. John E. Whitmore ’42 and Mrs. Whitmore Mrs. Alexander H. Williams Jr. Mr. Charles P. Wilson ’42 Mr. Walter E. Woelper Sr. ’42

Mr. Gregory R. Wright Jr. ’95 Ms. Ellen Barry Mr. Brian Buckley Thomas Citrano Mr. John Creedon Mr. Dan Darby Mr. Michael T. Fellows ’95 Mr. Francis Ford Ms. Peggy Galbraith Mr. H. Carter Hunt Jr. Mr. Arthur Keenan Mr. Sean Kelley Ms. Stephanie Miller Mr. Ryan A. Olson ’96 Maj. Richard H. Pitchford ’95, USMC Mr. Jon Raymond Mr. Charles Ridenhour Capt. Thomas H. Ripley ’93, USMCR Ms. Helen Stanbro Mr. John Sullivan Mr. Will Wood

Capt. Luke C. Wullenwaber ’02, USA Mr. Gregory G. McDearmon ’99 Lt. David M. Ross ’02, USA

Matching Gifts The following companies or related foundations have made contributions to VMI, matching the gifts of alumni and friends listed under each. These gifts were received during the time frame of May 1, 2010, through July 31, 2010.

Aerojet Mr. and Mrs. John Schumacher

Alaska Airline Lt. Col. Thomas D. McGinnis ’86, USMC (Ret)

Altria Group Inc. Mr. William K. Bhatta ’76 Mr. John R. Munno ’84

American Electric Power Mr. James G. Tapley ’43 Mr. C. Michael Thacker ’68 Mr. James R. Thrasher ’82

Ameriprise Financial Advisor Mr. Richard Lee Clary ’71

Anheuser-Busch Companies Inc. Mr. and Mrs. Robert Hughes

AT&T Foundation Mr. Edward G.S. Maxwell Jr. ’67 Mr. James M. Outland ’83

Bank of America Foundation Inc. Mr. James C. Cosby ’82 Mr. Guy W. Gilleland Jr. ’46

Bristol-Myers Squibb Foundation Mr. Christian F. Daniels ’91

Capital One Mr. Erick E. Ames ’89 Mr. Alexander G. Blanton Jr. ’98

Chesapeake Corporation Foundation Mr. Harry H. Warner ’57 Mr. Hugh V. White Jr. ’54

Eli Lilly and Company Foundation Mr. Robert E. Moore Jr. ’70

Fannie Mae Foundation Mr. David M. Benedick ’98

The General Electric Foundation Mr. Jennings B. Bunch Jr. ’50A Mr. Michael E. Johnson ’85 Mr. Paul A. Kuhne Jr. ’54 Maj. Gen. Richard E. Leithiser ’50B, USAR (Ret)

Ingersoll-Rand Charitable Foundation Mr. Warren W. Michelsen ’87 Mr. Richard C. Murphy ’60


VMI FOUNDATION, INC. Lockheed Martin Corporation Lt. Col. Marc L. Fielder ’72, USAF (Ret) Mr. Joseph W. Keyes Jr.’82 Mr. David L. Lawson Jr. ’96 Mr. Roy I. Siegel ’77 Col. Spencer W. Wilkinson ’66, USAF (Ret)

The Medtronic Foundation Mr. Robert E. Clark ’90

MMC Mr. Thomas R. Buckner ’69

Nationwide Foundation Mr. Wymer W. Manning Jr. ’54

Norfolk Southern Foundation Mr. O. Raymond Martin V ’71 Mr. Phillip R. Ogden ’63 Mr. Edwin R. Trinkle ’70 Mr. Lawrence E. Wetsel Jr. ’61

Pitney Bowes Company Mr. Benjamin W.L. Semmes III ’88

PNC Foundation Mr. Nathaniel W. Pendleton, III ’87

Public Service Electric & Gas Company Mr. James J. Schaffer III ’77

RBC Foundation-USA Mr. Kendall D. Avery ’82

Shell Oil Company Foundation Mr. Kenneth K. Kauffman

State Farm Companies Foundation Mr. H. Lee Barnes Jr. ’69 Mr. J.G. Goodwillie III ’60 Mr. Quinter J. Herring Jr. ’50B

United Technologies Corporation The Northrop Grumman Foundation Mr. Kevin Pavlish Mr. Ronald D. Rogers ’64

Mr. James R. Greene ’87

Universal Leaf Foundation Mr. John B. Adams Jr. ’66

Verizon Foundation Mr. Edgar R. Bare ’54 Mr. Edgar L. Brown Jr. ’53 Mr. George A. Farry ’75 Mr. George A. Ford Jr. ’54 Mr. Richard W. Glass ’76 Mr. John S. Ingles ’44 Mr. Glen N. Jones ’78 Mr. William K. Kays Jr. ’55 Mr. W.B. Kuykendall Jr. ’50B Mr. Ralph T. Minor ’97 Mr. Daniel W. Murphy ’85 Mr. I. Thomas Orrell ’77 Mr. and Mrs. Louis D. Scarpa Mr. Eugene Scott Jr. ’80 Mr. Ben W.L. Semmes Jr. ’55 Mr. David T. Wagner ’82 Mr. A. Thomas Wallace ’54 Mr. David F. West ’76 Mr. Randolph B. Williamson ’88

Victaulic Co. of America Inc. Mr. Ronald L. Gault Jr. ’71

Wachovia Foundation Mr. Michael T. Morrissett ’74

PepsiCo Foundation Col. Peter L. Philp ’51, USA (Ret)

Vectren Foundation Mr. David R. Ames Jr. ’85

2010-Issue 4

Wells Fargo Foundation Mr. and Mrs. George K. Gill Mr. Matthew S. Owings ’92 Mr. Brian D. Tate ’90


KEYDET CLUB KEYDET CLUB Keydet Club Board Recognizes New and Retiring Members

Bouis ’67

Paulette ’69

Perry ’77

At its June 2010 meeting, the Keydet Club Board of Governors recognized the officers for the next fiscal year, as well as new incoming board members and retiring members. The officers of the board for 2010-11 are: Charles F. Plageman ’90, president; U. “Buzz” Birzenieks ’64, 1st vice president; Joseph W. Keyes Jr. ’82, 2nd vice president; and Gerald J. Acuff Jr. ’71, secretary and treasurer. Joining the officers on the Executive Committee will be board members Kelly K. Sullivan ’01 and Bland Massie Jr. ’77. New board members, effective July 1, 2010, are: Paul A. Bouis ’67, William A. Paulette ’69, Christopher M. Perry ’77, Calvin L. Murray III ’83, Mohammad Khandan-Barani ’84, W. Brett Hayes ’86 and Alfred C. Lester Jr. ’98. Returning board members who will serve a second, three-year term are: Steven C. Craddock ’70, Thomas J. Wilson IV ’74, Jeffrey T. Roseme ’82, Hunter W. Elliott ’85 and David B. Bruce ’94. At the end of the meeting, Plageman presented desk plates to retiring members Walter E. Galanty Jr. ’73 and John E. Krovic ’77. Also retiring, but not present, were W. Arthur Bushey Jr. ’69, James R. Chalkley ’73 and Helen Talbott. Following is a brief biography of the new board members:

to the All-Southern Conference team. He also set school records for the old Kerr’s Creek cross country course and for the threemile, six-mile and 3000-meter steeplechase events. In addition, he served on the Cadet staff (three years) and was a member of the American Chemistry Society and Bomb staff (four years). Over the next seven years, he served in the U.S. Army (two years) and earned his Ph.D. in chemistry at the University of Tennessee. Immediately following graduation from VMI, he taught Rat chemistry and served as an assistant track coach, prior to being assigned to MACV as an infantry officer. In 2005, Bouis established the Nancy Peterson Bouis Memorial Athletic Scholarship to honor his first wife, an avid supporter of VMI athletics. The scholarship provides grant-in-aid to a football or basketball athlete, with preference to an athlete who is a psychology major and/or a member of the VMI track team. Bouis has a son and two daughters: Matthew, Suzette and Karine. He and his wife, Carol (née Budick), live in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. Paulette ’69, William A. Bill Paulette (or Bunny to his friends) is founder and president of KBS, Inc., in Richmond, Virginia – the largest general contractor in the state. In addition, he has been involved with the formation of other companies in the construction business, including Hermitage Steel, Mid-Eastern Builders and Systems East. Paulette is a founder of the Bank of Richmond (now Gateway Bank) and is a member of Gateway’s board. He previously served on the boards of the Virginia State Board for Contractors and the Make-A-Wish Foundation and is a former chairman of the Henrico County Community Services Board. A 1969 graduate, Paulette earned a bachelor of science degree in civil engineering from VMI. As a cadet, he lettered in both varsity football and baseball. After his graduation, he served in the U.S. Army from 1969-72. Paulette previously served on the Keydet Club’s Board of Governors and was holding the office of 2nd vice president when he was named by the governor of Virginia to the VMI Board of Visitors in 2002 – at which time he resigned from the Keydet Club Board. Paulette Hall, which houses the baseball, soccer and lacrosse locker rooms, is named in his honor. His company, KBS, Inc., managed the construction of this facility. He and his wife, Carolyn (née Estes), live in Richmond, Virginia. They have two children: Emmeline Paulette Reeves and William H. Paulette ’05.

Bouis ’67, Paul A. Paul Bouis is retired from a career in chemistry, working in research and development, specifically on the purification of biomolecules and analysis of drugs of abuse. He was selected as a member of the 2010 class of Fellows of the American Chemical Society (ACS), established to honor members who have demonstrated excellence in their contributions to the chemical sciences and in service to the ACS and the chemistry community. He serves as chair of the ACS Committee on the Purity of Reagent Chemicals. Bouis graduated from VMI with the class of 1967, earning Perry ’77, Christopher M. a bachelor of science degree in chemistry. As a cadet, he was Chris is president and chief executive officer of VAMAC, Inc., a captain of the track and cross country teams and was selected plumbing, septic and water well supplier and distributor com186


KEYDET CLUB pany, headquartered in Richmond, Virginia. VAMAC has 20 operations with 122 associates and boasts an upscale plumbing showroom in Richmond. It supplies products and specialized services to contractors, as well as maintenance and property management services. VAMAC specializes in products and systems that handle water and sewage. The company’s territory footprint covers most of Virginia, parts of Maryland, Delaware and North Carolina. The Perry family, now in its third generation, owns VAMAC, and Chris is the president and CEO. His father, Kenneth M. Perry ’53, is the chairman of the company. The fourth generation of the family is in transition into the company. Chris graduated from VMI in 1977, earning a B.S. degree in civil engineering. As a cadet, he was a four-year member of the VMI Karate Club and the VMI Commanders and led the VMI Pep Band for three years. After VMI, Chris served in the U.S. Army and then the U.S. Army National Guard, 276th Combat Engineers, for 10 years. He resigned from the National Guard, achieving the rank of captain and company commander, to assume a greater leadership role in the family business. He has been a Rotarian for over 24 years and is a past president of the Western Henrico Rotary Club. He also served as vice president and president of a national buying group supporting the plumbing industry. He and his wife, Patti, live in Midlothian, Virginia. They have three sons and a daughter: Christopher, Ross ’08, David ’11 and Emily. They are members of the Episcopal Church of the Redeemer in Midlothian. Murray III ’83, Calvin L. Cal Murray matriculated from Newport News, Virginia, with the class of 1983 and graduated with a bachelor of arts degree in economics. As a cadet, Murray was a standout member of the VMI football team, lettering three years. He was the Monogram Club President his first class year. Upon graduating, he signed a free agent contract with the Denver Broncos. Murray is an accomplished sales/management professional with over 25 years of sales achievements and management responsibilities in pharmaceuticals, renal/dialysis provider and surgical markets. Past positions include regional director roles at Roche Pharmaceuticals and Sentient Medical Systems. Through the years with these companies, he has gained experience in almost every aspect of the healthcare marketplace. He served in the U.S. Army Reserve for eight years, achieving the rank of captain. Murray is a member of the VMI radio team as the color analyst. He and his wife of 27years, Jeannie, have two sons and a daughter: Carter, a 2009 VMI graduate, 2010-Issue 4

is stationed at Pensacola Naval Air Station attending flight school; Cameron is a rising second classman at VMI and a letterman on the football team; and Anne-Claire is a rising sophomore at Virginia Tech. Cal and Jeannie are members of the VMI Parents Council and live in Glen Allen, Virginia. Khandan-Barani ’84, Mohammad Moe Khandan-Barani is the vice president and general manager of Aspen Motion Technologies, located in Radford, Virginia. The company, which today is a division of Pentair Corp., is a leading supplier of high-end precision Motion Control products to a diversified global customer base. Khandan-Barani founded Aspen Motion Technologies in 1996 and served as president of the company until it joined with Pentair. He began his career as a design engineer with Ohio Electric Motors in 1985. A member of the VMI class of 1984, he graduated from VMI with a bachelor of science degree in electrical engineering. In 1997, he earned a master of business administration degree from Radford University. He and his wife, Laura (née Carriker), live in Radford and have five children: two daughters, Ryan and Megan, and three sons, Alex, Ben and Sam. Alex is a member of the VMI class of 2012. Hayes ’86, W. Brett Brett Hayes is a financial advisor with Wells Fargo Advisors (formerly Wheat First Securities). In both 2006 and 2008, he was ranked by Virginia Business Magazine as one of Virginia’s top wealth advisors. Hayes graduated with his class of 1986, earning a bachelor of arts degree in economics. During his cadetship, he lettered in baseball, which he played all four years. He was also a member of the Cadet Investment Club each year while at VMI. After VMI, Hayes served in the U.S. Air Force from 1987-92, earning the rank of captain. He and his wife, Kelly (née Henderson), live in Richmond, Virginia. They have twin boys: Ned and Will. Lester Jr. ’98, Alfred C. Al Lester is a project manager and SWaM director for KBS, Inc., in Richmond, Virginia – the largest general contractor in the state. Lester has worked for Bill Paulette ’69 for the past three years. Al matriculated from Georgia and graduated from VMI in 1998, earning a bachelor of science degree in civil engineering. As a cadet, he was a 4-year starter at quarterback for the VMI football team, lettered in track and field, was 1st Battalion S-6 and president of the VMI Gospel Choir. He and his wife, Melanie, live in Glen Allen, Virginia. They have two daughters: Ava and Madeline.

Murray III ’83

KhandanBarani ’84

Hayes ’86

Lester Jr. ’98



Large Turnout for 2010 Leadership Outing The Keydet Club’s 2010 Leadership Outing was held Friday, June 4, 2010, beginning at the Lexington Golf and Country Club under sunny skies and mild temperatures. The field of 124 golfers was divided into two flights based on their team’s handicap. In addition, individual prizes were awarded for longest drive and closest to the pin. Other leadership members opted to play tennis or shoot clays. Friday evening, the Leadership members convened at Moody Hall for a scrumptious buffet prepared by Chef Mike Goff. The aroma of soft-shell crabs, shrimp, oysters, clams casino, crab cakes, scallops, grilled lamb chops, carved tenderloin, pork wings and




BBQ duck filled the air around Post. After the meal, Head Coaches Sparky Woods (football) and Marlin Ikenberry ’95 (baseball) spoke to the guests about their athletic programs and what lies ahead. With over 170 dinner patrons, this was one of the largest Leadership Outings held in recent memory. Without the support of these alumni and friends, the Keydet Club could not provide VMI with the financial resources it needs to fund its intercollegiate athletic programs. The Leadership Outing is a complimentary, all-day event for those Keydet Club members who contribute $1,000 or more in annual gifts during the fiscal year (or $500 for those who fall within the “Young Alumni” category, i.e., the past 15 class years, 1995-2010). Next year’s event will be held on Friday, June 3, 2011. Make sure you are invited – become the Keydet Club’s newest leadership member, and enjoy this fun-filled event next June! Hobie Doyle ’34 Flight 1st Place (57) Dave Grimm ’86 Bruce Kitchen ’81 Jay Thompson ’86 Grover Outland ’81

Giles H. Miller ’24 Flight 1st Place (60) Marc Trider ’96 Turner Perrow ’96 Chris Antonelli ’96 Frank Dingle ’96

2nd Place (58) David Bruce ’94 Danny Felty ’94 Lindsay Bruce Brian Hingst ’94

2nd Place (61) Ted Comer ’84 Eddie Barnes ’59 Mark Hall ’75 Tom Mason ’75

3rd Place (60) Jim Chapman ’69 Don Woods Tom Jones ’69 Tommy Thompson ’69

3rd Place (61) Cal Murray ’83 Mark Weiss ’73 Tom Napier ’73 Stuart Seaton ’73

4th Place (61) Gale Sommers ’72 Walt Galanty ’72 Kimo Wong ’75 Kelly Sullivan ’01

4th Place (63) Tom Mortenson Danny Thornton ’78 Gary Mackey ’69 John Sebrell ’69 Longest Drive: # 3 Donny White ’65 # 18 Jack Castleberry ’07

Closest to the Pin: # 2 Cal Murray ’83 # 4 David Ross ’02 # 8 Danny Thornton ’78 # 14 Turner Perrow ’96 # 17 Jason Allison





Leadership Outing Photo Captions


(This and previous page.)

Photo 1: Athletic Director Donny White ’65 with two VMI basketball greats: Jeff Gausepohl ’65 and John Krovic ’77. Photo 2: Tom Puskas ’74, Coach Don Woods and Allen Morgan ’75. Photo 3: Brian Ross ’99, David Bruce ’94, Charles Ayers ’97, Cadet Stan Okoye ’13, Cadet Austin Kenon ’11 and Ron Wall ’69. Photo 4: Women Cadets Sarah Strand ’12 (soccer), Jasmine Hariston ’12 (track) and Simone Jimenez ’13 (soccer) with Al Soltis ’79, Coach John Trudgeon and Don Giles ’64. Photo 5: John Thornton ’68, John Sebrell ’69 and Gary Mackey ’69. Photo 6: Turner Perrow ’96, Charlie Branch ’95 and Charles Ayers ’97. Photo 7: Robert Crumpler ’07 and Cadet Joseph Munno ’12. Photo 8: Mark Hall ’75, Cadet Felix Kitur ’11 and football coach, Don Woods. Photo 9: Tripp Duerson ’86 and Bob Chapman ’84. Photo 10: Ted Mervosh ’67, Howard Donald ’68, Mike 7 Thacker ’68 and Tom Hickey ’68. Photo 11: Buzz Birzenieks ’64, Paul Bouis ’67, Chris Cartwright ’62 and Doug Marechal ’62.



2010-Issue 4





Keydet Club Auction On May 22, 2010, nearly 350 alumni, spouses and friends gathered at Richmond’s renowned, five-star Jefferson Hotel for a celebratory night of camaraderie and spirited bidding to benefit academic support for VMI athletics. Led by Event Chair Buzzy Northen ’77, a committed group of alumni spanning several decades worked tirelessly over the preceding five months to solicit corporate sponsorships and nearly 120 donations for both the live and silent auctions. The third in a series of annual events (Richmond in May 2008; Norfolk in April 2009), the evening met with unparalleled success and raised over $130,000 in net proceeds. Upon arrival, guests enjoyed a cocktail reception surrounded by tempting silent auction items, followed by a seated dinner in the Jefferson’s Grand Ballroom, complete with video highlights of VMI athletics. During dessert, Buzzy and Richmond’s favorite auctioneer, The above antique Model 1819 Harper Ferry’s Musket, Mark Motley, led the live auction donated by M.L. Buchanan ’68, was one of the items included in the live auction. and scholarship pledge drive.

The evening continued with dancing and drinks, including live entertainment provided by the band “Class Act.” Alumni from across the country helped this effort by donating exclusive vacation homes, premiere sporting packages, once-in-a-lifetime excursions, fine art, dining and entertainment opportunities, and a host of business services and retail items. Keydet Club CEO Greg Cavallaro ’84 said, “We are most grateful for the Steering Committee’s leadership and efforts, as well as the numerous sponsors and businesses who helped to underwrite the evening and make it such a huge success. The total amount raised was unparalleled, and the proceeds earmarked for supporting the athletic academic advising center, tutoring and summer school will benefit the cadet-athletes on every team at VMI. To all who made the May 22nd dinner, dance and auction such a success, thank you!

Generous auction supporter, Ralph Costen ’70, was surprised during the auction event when his birthday was recognized with an ovation of “best wishes.”


Auction Committee Charles E. “Buddy” Garbett ’90 Samuel N. Stocks ’90 J. Clifford Foster IV ’93 Alfred C. Lester Jr. ’98 Daniel M. Smith ’98 Matthew H. Gehring ’01 William H. Paulette ’05 VMI ALUMNI REVIEW

KEYDET CLUB Mark L. Antonelli ’06 Wadsworth Bugg IV ’07 Maury A. Denton ’07 Ellen Northen Rita Stocks Ann S. (Bocky) Talbott

Thompson Davis LLC– Seven Hills Partners

Event Sponsors Charlotte and Gil Minor ’63 Alice and Bill Goodwin Maryann and Jerry Acuff ’71 Lee Camp The Hupp Family (’44, ’77and ’84) Scottie and Tom Slater ’66 Laurel and Harley Duane ’67 Carolyn and Bill Paulette ’69 Marsha and Ralph Costen Jr. ’70 Kelly and Brett Hayes ’86 Page and Rick Kastelberg ’74 Ellen and Buzzy Northen ’77 The Buck Fund Scholarship VMI Class of 1977 Susan and L.F.Payne ’67 Bootsie and Jimmy Rogers ’67 Linda and Bill Stephens ’73 Mindy and Massie Meredith ’79

Other Sponsors Atlantic Constructors The Ayers Brothers Branscome, Inc. Costen Floors KBS David R. McGeorge Car Company Morgan Keegan Richmond Corrugated Box Rockwell Associates, Inc. Romm Custom Homes Shoosmith Construction, Inc. Vandeventer Black, LLP VMI Athletes of the ’90s VMI Class of 1966 VMI Class of 1968 VMI Class of 1974 VMI Class of 1977 VMI Class of 1978 W.M. Jordan Widespread Solutions The Jefferson Hotel RPM Graphics, Inc. Worth Higgins & Associates

Keydet Club Web Site Offers Many Options The Keydet Club has launched its updated Web site: http:// and access to a small calendar of upcoming events. (You can The product of a collaborative effort click on “Learn More” to view a larger calendar.) between the Alumni Association, VMI Marketing & CommuKeydet Club members can check out their status in the club, nications, and the Keydet Club, the site offer viewers diverse update their address and phone number or e-mail address, and information and options. ask a coach a question under the “Members Only” heading. To At the site’s home page are three large, moving windows access these options, users enter the same login used for the (resembling boxes) that feature items of interest to Keydet (VMI Ranks) Web site. Club members and the VMI One of the major benefits family, such as descriptions offered by the site is the abilof endowed athletic scholarity to submit online gifts to ships, upcoming events and the Keydet Club Scholarship cadet-athlete profiles. Fund, an Athletic Operations Just above these moving winFund or any fund that supdows are links to information ports VMI. about the Keydet Club and its The Web site provides semission, contact information curity protection for online and “links” to other sites, such giving, but gifts may also be as,, submitted by way of the telelocal weather and local hotel phone or by mail. listings. If there is additional inforHeadline news appears in mation that you would like to the center of the home page, see on the Keydet Club Web and just to the right are links site, please contact Sue Wood to the Keydet Club’s Faceat 800/444-1839 or at swood@ book and YouTube accounts. Lower on the page are links We hope you enjoy the site, to personal audio messages and let us know if you have A screen shot of the VMI Keydet Club Web site at http:// from the Keydet Club staff any questions or problems.

2010-Issue 4


Thank You from Keydet Club CEO Greg Cavallaro ’84 Coming off the incredible 75th Anniversary which marked the founding of the VMI Keydet Club and the record $3.55 million raised in support of athletic scholarships and operations in Fiscal Year 2009, the Keydet Club saw the wind come out of its sail, as the impact of the economy began to hit home in Fiscal Year 2010. After being down more than 20% at the end of May, compared to the same time the preceding year, the Keydet Club was able to close the fiscal year ’10 books down only 4%. While we did not raise our goal of another $3.55 million, we

would like to extend a heartfelt “thank Our revamped Class Representative you” to all of our members who continue network will be engaging their Brother to answer the call when VMI Rats throughout the year to needs them most. Your rehelp add more alumni to our solve on behalf of the great membership rolls. If 50% young men and women in of all VMI men and women the Corps today is a gratifying would support athletics, the spectacle. teams from our small, proud But our work is never done. school would be in a much This fiscal year (July 2010better position to bring us June 2011), we have raised immense pride – and our our sights even higher and alumni body would be recare looking to bring in an ognized as one of the most unprecedented $3.75 million elite in the country with in annual support of our athone of the highest alumni Cavallaro ’84

were able to cover the budgeted amount needed to pay the annual scholarship and operations bill for VMI athletics by bringing in $3.37 million. On behalf of the staff of the Keydet Club, our dedicated board members and especially our coaches and cadet-athletes who directly benefit from the generosity of those who support the Keydet Club, I

letic program. We are optimistic that our “Funding For Success” effort on behalf of our non-revenue teams will have a huge impact and bring in the necessary funds to help ensure these programs are funded at adequate levels, so that they can compete and win! Our goal is to see VMI teams win championships! But they need our financial support to get it done.


percentages of participation. We need your help. We need and want you to become a member of the Keydet Club today. Editor’s Note: Unless stated otherwise, all articles in the Keydet Club section of the Alumni Review are provided by the Keydet Club.