Friday, August 29, 2014

This Week in SigEp Patriot History, Volume 25 / 2014, 25 – 31 AUG


This week the SigEp Patriots Project honors and remembers 20 brothers-in-arms from chapters across the country, including the only Founding Father with military service.

29 AUG 1918
Brother Kerfoot
Photo credit
On this date, Virginia Alpha Brother & Sigma Phi Epsilon Founding Father Chaplain (First Lieutenant) Franklin Webb Kerfoot, U.S. Army Chaplain Corps was killed in a collision of an automobile and a train on the Southern Railway in Chatham, Virginia. Brother Kerfoot had temporarily returned home from Newport News, VA where he was serving as a Baptist chaplain working among the soldiers departing overseas.

He was Class of 1902 at Richmond College and later attended Crozer Theological Seminary. At his memorial service he was remembered as “the most original preacher of his time” and it was stated that God took him to welcome the Soldiers who had “passed on” while on the battlefield.

Respect can be paid to Founding Father Kerfoot at Green Hill Cemetery in Berryville, VA.

30 AUG 1941
Brother Hissem
Just about nine weeks before the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, Illinois Alpha Brother Joseph M. Hissem received his commission as an Ensign, U.S. Navy Reserve on this date. The Navy trained him to fly and just nine months later he would find himself in the middle of the Battle of Midway – the turning point of the war in the Pacific.

Was he the only SigEp Patriot there? It is unlikely, but he is the only one SPP has found so far. We will keep looking.

26 AUG 1942
On this date, World War II Veteran Colorado Gamma Brother John H. Price, Jr. entered the U.S. military.

28 AUG 1942
Ohio Alpha Brother Robert L. Townsend entered service in the U.S. Coast Guard on this date following graduation from Ohio Northern University.

28 AUG 1943
Mississippi Alpha Brother Robert D. Keller began his WWII service on this date when he joined the U.S. Army.

25 AUG 1944
On this date Frank J. Ruck, Jr. was initiated in to Sigma Phi Epsilon at Michigan Alpha while going through Navy Supply Corps training being held at the University of Michigan. Read Volume 18 / 2014 for more information about Frank’s road to SigEp and military service.

28 AUG 1944
Class of 1935 graduate of Lawrence University, Wisconsin Alpha Brother Richard P. Martin, joined the U.S. Navy Reserve on this date.

31 AUG 1945
Wake Forest University graduate of the class of 1943, North Carolina Zeta Brother Vernor R. Vines, entered the U.S. Coast Guard on this date.

30 AUG 1953
On this date, with the signing of the Korean Armistice Agreement the previous month, Sergeant John W. “Bill” Rambo, Sr., U.S. Army was released from 19-months of captivity as a prisoner of war. Following his Korean War service, he joined the Tennessee National Guard and attended the University of Tennessee where he became a SigEp.

31 AUG 1960
U.S. Army Air Corps World War II Veteran and Lambda Tau Delta (LTD) Brother Lieutenant Colonel Alex C. Jamieson, U.S. Air Force retired on this date after more than 20 years of service. The class of 1937 graduate of Fenn College enlisted in the Army Air Corps three years after graduation, and was commissioned Second Lieutenant, U.S. Army Air Corps in FEB 1942.

You may be asking yourself, why is he listed here?

Subsequently, Alex became our brother after Cleveland State University (CSU) was established as a result of the state of Ohio assuming control of Fenn College in 1964. That same year, the LTD chapter at CSU was chartered as OH Nu.

30 AUG 1964
Delaware Alpha Brother Gilbert P. Mahla was promoted to Lieutenant, U.S. Navy Reserve on this date.

27 AUG 1993
On this date, New York Eta Brother Kevin Sitek crossed the parade deck at Parris Island, SC and earned the title of United States Marine.

25 AUG 2005
U.S. Coast Guard World War II Veteran and LTD Brother Stanley “Bud” G. Barach, 82, died on this date in a nursing home in Shaker Heights, Ohio. Stanley entered the Coast Guard in JAN 1943 and was discharged in MAR 1945. He subsequently attended Fenn College and graduated with the class of ’48.

Bud became our brother when the LTD chapter at Cleveland State University became OH Nu.

28 AUG 2008
On this date, U.S. Navy Veteran, Former District Governor and Indiana Alpha Brother Rex A. Sebastian died in Dallas, Texas. After graduating from Purdue University in 1951 with his bachelor’s and the next year from Indiana with his master’s, Brother Sebastian worked for Proctor and Gamble before serving 33 months in U.S. Navy’s Supply Corps.

Following his naval service, Rex went overseas to work for Cummins Engine Company, Inc., and his last position with Cummins was Vice President-International. In 1966, he left Cummins to join Dresser as Vice President-International Operations. He also served as Senior Vice President-Operations, Office of the Chairman, Dresser Industries, Inc. In this capacity, he had responsibility for one of Dresser's product segments which accounted for approximately $1 billion.

Ever supportive of Indiana University, Brother Sebastian served as a member of the Dean's Advisory Council, School of Business, Indiana University where, for several years, he served as Chairman of the Membership Committee.

When Rex returned to Texas, he continued his commitment to his community. He served as a member of the Dean's Advisory Council, College of Business Administration and Graduate School of Business at the University of Texas at Austin, and as a member of the Dean's Advisory Council, School of Management at the University of Texas at Dallas. Rex also established two professorships in the College and Graduate School of Business at UT Austin.
Respect can be paid to Brother Sebastian at Sparkman Hillcrest Memorial Park in Dallas.

Brother Pert
27 AUG 2012
Maine Alpha Brother First Lieutenant Perleston L. “Bub” Pert, Jr., U.S. Army died on this date at the Maine Veterans Home in Scarborough, Maine. Brother Pert received a bachelor’s degree in Journalism in 1953 from the University of Maine at Orono, and upon graduation was commissioned a Second Lieutenant, U.S. Army serving in the Infantry. Bub served on active duty at Fort Benning, GA, and Fort Dix, NJ, between 1954 and 1956.

Brother Pert pursued a career in radio and television journalism as a news editor and feature writer/photographer. While with the Gannett newspapers he was awarded a gold press card award for producing a photo page on Revere bells in Maine.

In 1967, Bub was the first person to be appointed Public Information Officer for the Maine State Police and held the same position with the Maine Department of Public Safety after the agencies were merged in 1971. During this period he compiled statutory and organizational histories of the Maine State Police, and these compilations are now housed in the Maine State Library.

The Bath, Maine native retired in August 1994 after four years as manager/treasurer of the Sagadahock Real Estate Association in Bath. He was a charter member of the Bath Historical Society, and served as a trustee and secretary. In 1999, he completed a manuscript on the history and garrisoning of Fort Halifax in Winslow located in nearby Winslow between 1754 and 1767.

Donations may be made in Bub's memory to the The Bath Historical Society, 33 Summer Street, Bath, ME 04530 or The Maine Chapter, Alzheimer's Association, 383 U. S. Route One, Suite 2 C, Scarborough, ME 04074.

Respect can be paid to Brother Pert at Oak Grove Cemetery in Bath.

Last week we missed an anniversary

23 AUG 2013
This marked the last day of service in the U.S. Marine Corps for two-time Operation Enduring Freedom Veteran and Massachusetts Alpha Brother First Lieutenant Justin LeBlanc

*Washington Alpha Brother Captain David J. Carpenter, U.S. Air Force Reserve, 86, passed away 23 AUG at home. He was commissioned in the Air Force Reserve as a communications officer and served for eight years.
*U.S. Veteran Texas Beta Brother John D. Troeger passed away 19 AUG.

Our thoughts and prayers go out to the family, friends and chapter brothers of SigEp Patriots Carpenter and Troeger. While they are no longer with us, the greatest casualty is being forgotten, and SPP pledges that these Brothers will always be remembered.

**On Wednesday, Rhode Island Beta Brother First Lieutenant Brian Plamondon, U.S. Marine Corps and his wife, Brandi, posted online that they are going to have a baby. Congratulations to the mom and dad-to-be and their families!
Brother Becker & his grandparents
**North Dakota Alpha Brother Ensign Mark Becker, U.S. Navy reported in stating that last Friday, he received his gold Naval Flight Officer wings. Mark is assigned to a P-8A (Poseidon) squadron out of Naval Air Station Jacksonville, FL. Congratulations and best of luck, Mark!

Have great news of a promotion, new orders, the birth of a child or anything else? SPP would love to share it with everyone! Just send an email to

* SPP t-shirts continue to be sold at Brother Darna runs SigEpic, and he has many great items on his website…but buy our t-shirt first and show your support.
* Since the last update, 171 SigEp Patriots from 101 chapters have been added to the SPP archives.
* SPP’s official Facebook group – SigEps Who Serve ( – now numbers 734 brothers-in-arms. Did you serve or know a Brother who did/does? If so, please let us know by emailing or go to the Facebook group. We will ask for your home chapter, rank, branch of service, military status (active, reserve, retired, etc.), and whether you are a combat veteran. Please help SPP find our fellow SigEp Patriots by sending them the link.
* Not on Facebook? No problem, join over a 100 brothers on our email listserve.
* On Twitter, @SigEpsWhoServe now has 138 followers. We don’t send out many tweets, so why no follow us?

Fraternally and Respectfully,

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