Our own COL Platoni has contributed to a coffee table book with four heroes of the Vietnam War for her alma mater, Hobart and William Smith Colleges, on the occasion of the bicentennial of Hobart College. COL (RET) Dick Anderegg, USAF, LTC (RET) John Norvell, USAF, and LTG (RET) Jack Woodward, USAF. Her first-person account of the Fort Hood Massacre is included in this publication. The colleges maintain a long tradition of military service, dating back to its founding in 1822, which has been chronicled and celebrated by these four Veterans (both US Air Force and US Army) in this heralded publication.
During Bicentennial Weekend, HWS honored the military service of alums with the release of a book about veteran alums and a panel discussion and book signing with its authors.
From a plaque on Coxe Hall to a memorial bench near the flagpole on the Quad, the contributions and sacrifices of Hobart and William Smith veterans are memorialized on campus. Now, their stories — and those of dozens more — have been assembled in a new history of HWS military service.
“Our, graduates have a long and proud history of service in the U.S. Armed Forces, stretching back to our founding,” says President Mark D. Gearan, who offered the welcome address at the panel discussion on Saturday. “I can think of no better way to commemorate and celebrate that tradition, especially in our Bicentennial year, than the impressive collection of institutional history, personal experiences and thoughtful reflections, compiled by some of our most decorated veterans.”
Hobart and William Smith Colleges’ Legacy of Military Service was unveiled on Saturday during a panel discussion with its authors, Col. C.R. “Dick” Anderegg ’67 and Lt. Col. John Norvell ’66, P’99, P’02, and Lt. Gen. Jack Woodward ’68 and Col. Katherine Platoni ’74, who, respectively, wrote the book’s foreword and afterword. Jean S. Anderegg ’67, who was the inspiration behind the project, moderated the discussion. They also met with alums and fellow veterans at a book signing later that day before the Bicentennial Gala.
The Colleges’ longstanding connection to the U.S. Armed Forces dates back to Hobart’s founding in 1822, with early trustees who were veterans of the American Revolutionary and the War of 1812, and students who served soon after.
The first half of the book narrates the history of the Colleges and profiles those who served, some of whom died in service, from the Civil War until today. It also contains first-person narratives of several alums who served in unusual and often trying circumstances. The second half of the book presents 117 profiles of alums who have served as well as those still serving across the globe.
“The authors have done an incredible amount of research, writing and connecting with other alums who served in all branches of the military,” says Gearan. “Their diligent work captures the diverse, complex experiences of our community of servicemembers and the ways those experiences were informed and illuminated by their liberal arts education at HWS. With this thoughtful and moving book, the Colleges proudly celebrate our Veterans, their achievements and their lives of consequence.”
The book is now part of the Warren Hunting Smith Library’s holdings. Copies have been mailed to those alums who submitted their stories for the book. Others interested in purchasing a copy should contact Director of Alumni and Alumnae Relations Chevanne DeVaney ’95, P’21, P’23 at [email protected].
Permission to reprint this article has been granted by Chevanne DeVaney, Director, Alumni and Alumnae Relations, Office of Advancement, Hobart and William Smith Colleges, 300 Pulteney Street, Geneva, NY 14456.
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