Friday, May 24, 2013

This Week in SigEp Patriot History, 20 – 26 MAY

“Now do your duty. Your officers cannot have entire command over you now. Each man must do all in his power for his country.” ~ Captain Isaac Hull, Commanding Officer, USS Constitution at the beginning of the battle with HMS Guerriere, the War of 1812


22 MAY 1949
On this date, World War I Veteran, Secretary of the Navy, first Secretary of Defense and NH Alpha Brother Lieutenant James Vincent Forrestal, U.S. Navy Reserve died in Bethesda, Maryland. When the U.S. entered World War I, Brother Forrestal enlisted in the United States Navy as a Seaman Second Class on 02 JUN 1917. After flight training, he was commissioned an Ensign, Naval Reserve Flying Corps at Boston, Massachusetts, and he gained his wings of gold before the year was out. He served until late 1919 when he was discharged with the rank of Lieutenant.

James was born in 1892 in Matteawan (now Beacon), New York. After graduating from high school, he worked for three years on local newspapers in New York before entering Dartmouth College in 1911 where he became a Brother of SigEp. The following year he transferred to Princeton University, however he left school in his senior year prior to completing work on this degree.

During World War II, Brother Forrestal held several government jobs, and was appointed Secretary of the Navy on 19 MAY 1944. He participated prominently in the development of the National Security Act of 1947, and went on to become the first Secretary of Defense upon the creation of that position.

James Forrestal is the second SigEp to have a U.S. Navy ship named after him, and I proudly served on that ship. The aircraft carrier USS Forrestal (CV-59), the first U.S. super-carrier, was affectionately referred to as the “FID,” recognizing the ships motto “First in Defense.”

President Truman and 2,500 guests attended the ceremony where Brother Forrestal was laid to rest with full military honors. Honorary pallbearers at his funeral included Herbert Hoover, former President of the United States; Fred M. Vinson, Chief Justice of the United States; General of the Army George C. Marshall, former Secretary of State and former Chief of Staff, U.S. Army, and General of the Army Dwight D. Eisenhower.

Respect can be paid to Brother Forrestal in Section 30, Site 674 SH at Arlington National Cemetery, Arlington, Virginia.

22 MAY 1970
AR Beta Brothers Gregory Felling and Jack Elwin Helms were commissioned as Second Lieutenants in the U.S. Army at their graduation on this date.

20 MAY 2005
On this date, U.S. Army World War II D-Day Veteran DE Alpha Brother Robert L. Snowberger died at his home in Wilmington, Delaware. Robert served with distinction in the U.S. Army during World War II, participating in the Normandy Invasion at Omaha Beach on D-Day. He was awarded the Bronze Star for heroic action against an "out numbering enemy force" in Germany on 06 APR 1945.

Robert graduated from A.I. DuPont High School and was an all-state football player. After military service, he went on to graduate from the University of Delaware, and then worked for the DuPont Company in advertising. Taking an early retirement, he became an independent manufacturer's representative and was actively involved in many entrepreneurial ventures.

25 MAY 2007
Korean War Veteran, three-time Representative in the West Virginia House of Delegates and WV Beta Brother Major David Lee Solomon, U.S. Army Reserve died on this date in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida. Brother Solomon served in the Korean War as a Second Lieutenant in the Signal Corps, and later in the Judge Advocate General's Reserves, rising to the rank of Major.

David was born in 1929 in Shinnston, West Virginia, and earned his undergraduate degree from West Virginia University in 1951. After his military service, he graduated from the WVU School of Law in 1956 and began his celebrated career in law. Brother Solomon was admitted to law practice in the West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals, the Northern and Southern Federal District Courts & the U.S. Supreme Court, and was a member of the West Virginia State Bar Association and the West Virginia Trial Lawyers Association. He founded Solomon & Solomon where he practiced law for over 50 years with his sons, Michael and Alex. David held membership in the Veterans of Foreign Wars, West Virginia Moose Association and the Elks Lodge.

Respect can be paid to Brother Solomon at St. Mary's Peace Garden in Star City, West Virginia.

17 MAY – National Guard Veteran and AR Gamma Brother Mitchell Joseph Ash, Jr. passed away in Collierville, TN at the age of 64 after a brief illness. The family requested memorial contributions are made to the American Heart Association, 2170 Business Center Drive, Memphis, TN 38134 and St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, 262 Danny Thomas Place, Memphis, TN 38105.

The thoughts and prayers of the SigEp Patriots Program are with the family, friends and chapter brothers of Brother Ash.

* AL Theta Brother Specialist Josh Sims, U.S. Army National Guard (Alabama) was recently awarded an Army Achievement Medal.
* RI Beta Brother Sergeant CJ Wesley, U.S. Army National Guard (Massachusetts) rendered the first salute to RI Beta Brother Matt Cabral on 17 MAY at his commissioning as a Second Lieutenant, and the RI Beta legacy continues.
* On 18 MAY, TX Theta Brother Nathan Dorsey was promoted to Specialist, U.S. Army National Guard (Texas).
* DC Delta Brother Anthony King was commissioned a Second Lieutenant, U.S. Air Force on 20 MAY 2013.
* This Week, SC Epsilon Brother Second Lieutenant Patrick Hamlin, U.S. Army completed Ground Week at the Airborne School at Fort Benning. Best of luck to Brother Hamlin during Tower and Jump weeks.
* RI Beta Brother Second Lieutenant Brian Plamondon, U.S. Marine Corps posted on Facebook today that he completed his first solo in the T-6B and that next come aerobatics!

Fraternally and Very Respectfully,

Brother Ed Jones, NY Eta ‘96
Chief Petty Officer, U.S. Navy Reserve
Founder, SigEp Patriots Project
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