Class of 1949 History
The history of the Class of 1949 is still in development. Nonetheless, members can recall its early beginnings and many things of subsequent years. A ’49 ABSTRACT was prepared by Gene Shine (deceased) in 1994 and rewritten for dissemination during the 50th Class of 1949 Reunion titled A 50TH YEAR PROFILE OF THE CLASS OF 1949, U. S. NAVAL ACADEMY, October 1999. For those unaware of its existence, a condensation is given herein Attendees of the 50th Reunion should have a copy of the 20 plus page document. A copy is at 49 House along with a copy of LUCKY BAG, Nineteen Forty-Nine and other class memorabilia.
THE FIRST 50 YEARS (1945-1995)
Candidates for admission to the United States Naval Academy as members of the Class of 1949 began arriving in Annapolis June 11, 1945 and ended with the last checking in October 25, 1945. The appointee selection process many had already endured included competitive examinations, interviews, and some physical screening; some arrived with direct appointments and having passed the USNA Entrance Examination; and some arrived with direct appointments with their entrance examination waived by college certificate. All, reportedly 1345, had to successfully survive the admission process. (The 1345 number includes principal appointees and replacement alternate(s) should the principal fail his physical or change his mind.) The admission process was a 3-day evolution. a.The first day scheduled required a physical examination following check-in at the Administration Building. Failing initial examination the candidate was rejected for entry or scheduled for reexamination. (Alternates at the Naval Academy Preparatory School (NAPS), at their homes, and elsewhere anxiously awaited failures of principal and alternates above them.) There were a number of failures. b.The second day those successfully passing their physicals assembled for individual posture photographs. (None of the candidates failed this event; however, several “died of shame” when a roommate stole his photo and sent to girl friends, inter alia.) The second event of that day was an explanatory talk by a member of the Executive Department and receipt of Executive Form No.41, Interpretation of Oath. It is unknown if any candidate changed his mind about entry at this point. The third event was receiving a room assignment, laundry number, and filling out forms incident to admission. Strangely, it was only following these events you were informed whether you passed your physical or not. If you were a member of the Navy you reported to the USS REINA MERCEDES for discharge. c.The third day candidates made their entrance deposit, and if formerly in the military showed discharge papers. All requirements satisfied, candidates gathered in Memorial Hall for taking the Oath and being sworn in as Midshipman, U. S. Navy. Noteworthy is the fact that if the second day was a Friday former military personnel were “civilians” over weekends. The last event of the third day was reporting to the Fourth Class Battalion office to commence life as a Plebe.
1.YOUNGEST MEMBERS (Requirement – Pass entrance exam and physical) Sumner PARKER 3/24/28 William LALOR 3/05/28 Richard MERGL 3/16/28 William King 2/25/28 William WENTWORTH 3/13/28 William MCFARLANE 2/11/28 Edward ZIMMERMAN 3/12/28 Thomas RINGWOOD 2/02/28 William BRYAN 3/05/28 John EKELUND 1/19/28 2.OLDEST MEMBERS (Requirement – Not older than 21 April 1st year of admission) Barry WHITTLESEY 5/10/23 Joyce FRAZEE 4/14/24 Meredith NICHOLSON 4/01/24 Major MCCREIGHT 4/22/24 Joseph LOGOMASINI 4/06/24 Valerio DURONIO 4/24/24 Kenneth SCHIWECK 4/09/24 Merton FALLON 4/24/24 Stanley COOPER 4/12/24 Joseph LONERGAN 4/27/24 3.CLASS MEMBERSHIP ON ENTRY New Admissions (Includes 200 SECNAV USN/USMC, Presidential, 1,111 and Congressional appointees.) Former Midshipmen readmitted 5 Turned back from Class of 1948 26 Turned back from Class of 1947 3 Class of 1947 “turnbacks” advanced to 48B -3 Total Class of 1949 members 1,142 4.FIRST TO ENTER The 200 SECNAV appointees included 10 Marines: Bill BODAGER Irven HISSOM Kenneth BOTT Richard HOLZWARTH Frank BROWN Edward O’CONNELL Richard FRANCIS Lawrence O’CONNELL Jacob HAMMER Richard WEST Richard HOLZWARTH died on Christmas leave December 1945. Jacob HAMMER was a non-graduate. The remaining eight graduated with six returning with commissions to the USMC, Bill Bodager being commissioned in the Air Force and Frank BROWN opting for commissioning in the Navy. Of the 190 SECNAV enlisted Navy appointees, approximately 131 graduated with all but one (medical discharge) being commissioned in the Air Force, Marine Corps, and Navy. Six reached flag rank and 29 reached Captain in the Navy, and Colonel in the Air Force and Army. Many Congressional appointees in the Navy exercised an option to transfer to the Naval Academy Preparatory School, NRTC Bainbridge, MD, or its overflow facilities at Camp Perry, VA, to prepare for the USNA entrance examination alongside SECNAV candidates for appointments. Congressional appointees in the other services could also receive this training by transferring into the Navy. 5.LAST TO ENTER CLASS Carlos McCULLOUGH10/25/1945 6,NATURALIZED CITIZENS IN CLASS Kenneth SCHIWECK (Germany) Alexander THOMSON (Scotland) 7.SHORTEST (Minimum 5’ 6”) Robert WEAVER 5’ 5” (Stretching) John HEMANN 5’ 5-3/4” (With knot) 8.TALLEST (Maximum 6’ 4”) John BARROW(Great basketball player) John DIXON (Basketball center & football end) 9.PRE-ACADEMY EDUCATION a.Most Education: The majority of ‘49ers had college backgrounds, many leaving college just before graduation to come to USNA. Only one completed college receiving a degree. Several completed sufficient college to become commissioned officers.
Calvin C. NORMANRensselaer Polytechnic InstituteBS, Chemical Engineering
Jack CURRENCE Penn State V-12 Ensign, USNR
William FULTON Cornell IA Ensign, USNR
William GOEWEY Union/Cornell Ensign, USNR
Milton GUSSOW Drew V-12/Columbia Mid'n SchoolEnsign, USNR
Walter KRAUS North Carolina V-12 Ensign, USNR
Robert LAWLER Unknown 2nd LT, Army Air Corps
Joseph LONERGAN Occidential/Notre Dame Mid'n School LTJG, USNR Jack MAGEE Franklin Marshall V-12/Columbia Mid'n SchoolEnsign, USNR
Carlos McCULLOUGH Oklahoma V-12 Ensign, USNR
John McTAMMANY Brown V-12/Northwestern Mid'n SchoolEnsign, USNR
Herman STROMBERG Harvard V-12 Ensign, USNR
b.Least Education: Eugene SHINEHigh school2 years and 3 months 10.HIGHEST PRE-ACADEMY ENLISTED: (SECNAV Appointees) Raymond BEAN Torpedoman 1/CPT Boats (5 combat awards) Karl BERNSTEIN Gunnersmate 1/C Kenneth BOTT Staff Sergeant Marine Corps William COLLINS Sonarman 2/C Kurt DORENKAMP Motor Machinist Mate 2/C
Wesley LINDSEY Quartermaster 1/C
Oscar OLSEN Aviation Radioman 2/C
Lee RAMSEY Aviation Radioman/Gunner DFC, NCM
Jay WALLACE Quartermaster 2/C Submarine combat 11.ONLY CLASSMATE ENTERING FROM USMA: William RATLIFFCompleted Plebe Year at West Point then entered USNA. 12.CLASS MEMBERSHIP OVER YEARS TO GRADUATION: Plebe Plebe 3rd Class2nd Class 1st ClassLoss SummerYearYearYearYearTotals
Start 1,1451,121917825794 Losses Hon. Dischg 2 60 32 6 2 102 Resigned19 113 57 20 1 210 To Class 50 0 28 0 3 0 31
Period1,121 917825 794791 354
All persons who at any time were members of the Class of 1949 at the U. S. Naval Academy, all as veterans and past members of the Armed Forces of the U. S. are considered to be members of the Class of 1949 unless they expressly relinquished their membership or were dismissed or forced to resign under less than honorable conditions from the Armed forces of the U. S. for the good of the service or good cause, or were expelled as a member by majority vote of members of the Class in good standing for reasons which are contrary to, or which endanger, the purposes, interests, or character of the Class Constitution.
World War II ended August 14, 1945 (VJ Day) after entrance of the majority of the members of 1949 to USNA and prior to the beginning of the academic year (September 29, 1949). At that time there was no obligatory period of service for midshipman resigning - - even for former enlisted personnel who still had time remaining on their original enlistments. Consequently, a high rate of resignations occurred during the period August 1945 to September 1947. For example, 41 of the 200 SECNAV enlisted appointees resigned during this period. The overall attrition rate for the Class of 1949 was 31% - - the worst since the Classes of 1939 (effects of the Great Depression) and 1941 (effects of Great depression and impending war). Effecting Class of 1949 attrition can be ending a war and veterans desiring to pursue their desired careers.
13.GRADUATION DATA: Membership at end of course 791 Did not complete course. Illness 1
(John McFeaters received degree and
was honorably discharged June 30, 1950.)
Number graduated and received Bachelor of Science degree790 Number not commissioned:10 Physically disqualified. Honorably Discharged 8 upon graduation. Hardship resignation accepted on graduation 1 (Eric Fenno, CAPT, USN) (Manuel Bentin (D), ADM, Peru) Ensign, Unrestricted Line 581 Ensign, Civil Engineer Corps 18 2nd Lieutenant, Marine Corps 55 2nd Lieutenant, Air Force 55 14.SPORTS LEADERSHIP
Earning more than 200 “Ns”, 49er team captains were:
BASKETBALL – John “Wheel” BARROW CREW – John “Spike” GARTLAND FOOTBALL– Scott EMERSON and Pete WILLIAMS 150-LB FOOTBALL – Hal STROMBERG RIFLE - Demy DEMYTTENAERE SOCCER - Al SCHAUFELBERGER SWIMMING - Frank GOULBURN INDOOR TRACK – Jim BEELER 15.PERSEVERANCE PAYS: a.Of the 28 midshipmen turned back into the Class of 1949, 16 graduated in 1949. b.Of the 31 1949 midshipmen turned back into the Class of 1950, 17 graduated in 1950. c.Of the 3 1949 midshipmen advanced to the Class of 1948-B, 2 graduated in 1948. 16.CONDUCT AND LEADERSHIP & APTITUDE: The number of demerits allowed before facing a board for dismissal from the USNA decreased yearly from 300 Plebe year to 150 First Class year. At least three ‘49ers had exemplary records in Conduct by standing number one for three of the four academic years. (It is noted that demerits acquired during Plebe Summer were expunged from records September 29, 1945 when Class of 1949 joined the Brigade for the academic year.) These “good guys were Warren Fredericks, Thomas Linton, and William Sample.
Grading of midshipmen in the category of Leadership & Aptitude was a subjective system of grading based on observation by officers of the Executive Department, instructors in the professional subjects conducted the USNA and during summer training. The basic criteria were observation of midshipmen in a leadership role and expected performance in the military service ashore or afloat. Consistently leading the way were John C. Barrow, Edward Briggs, Dennis Stanfill, and Thomas Walters. Noteworthy is that several other “head and shoulder” performers in the Class of 1949 emerged during their naval and civilian service to high levels of leadership and responsibility.
THE ‘49ER LEGACY
17.LONGEST SERVICE ON ACTIVE DUTY: Glenwood CLARK, VADMJul 1988 Thomas KILCLINE, VADM Aug 1983 Joseph JOSEPHSON, RADM Apr 1987 Edward KOCHER, RADM May 1983 James WEBBER, VADM Apr 1987 Harry TRAIN, ADM Sep 1982 James WATKINS, ADM Jul 1986 Sumner SHAPIRO, RADM Sep 1982 William HAMILTON, CAPT May 1986 Calhoun KILLEEN, MGEN Jul 1982 Kenneth CARR, VADM May 1985 Kenneth KNOIZEN, RADM Jul 1982 Edward BRIGGS, VADM Oct 1984 John C. BARROW, RADM Oct 1981 Robert WALTERS, VADMOct 1984 John DIXON, RADM Oct 1981 John EKELUND, RADM Nov 1983Karl BERNSTEIN, RADM Aug 1981 Ralph GHORMLEY, RADM Oct 1983 James MURRAY, RADM Aug 1981 Edward WALLER, VADM Sep 1983 18.YEARS AND TYPES OF SERVICE Our ‘49er classmates have served in the Armed Forces of the United States during the period from May 6, 1941, the enlistment date of Stanley COOPER, to July 1, 1988, the retirement date of Glenwood CLARK. Members of the class have served in World War II, the Korean and Vietnam conflicts, and the Lebanon crisis, the Cuban Missile crisis, the Dominican Republic crisis, the Haiti crisis, and in almost all other crises, actions, and emergency deployments of forces by this country that occurred during the 47 years of active service by classmates. We are now represented by all ranks from Ensign retired, to Admiral, Retired. Thirty-nine ‘49ers achieved rank as flag and general officers. They accomplished this in the Navy (37), Air Force (1), and Marine Corps (1). Breakdown of warfare specialties of Navy flags were: Supply Corps (1 USNR included) 4 Civil Engineering Duty (CEC) 1 One of the 55 ‘49ers commissioned in the Marine Corps Calhoun KILLEEN, attained the rank of Major General. One of the 55 that were commissioned in the Air Force, Robert BERG, attained the rank of Brigadier General. 19MEDALS AND AWARDS The class data on honors, medals, and awards can only be approximate since many of our classmates (or their survivors) have apparently been too humble or shy to have kept the Alumni Association informed of awards and honors received. Additions to the following listing would be welcomed. PURPLE HEART -James BEELER DISTINGUISHED FLYING CROSS-31 awards LEGION OF MERIT - 130 awards 19.KILLED ON ACTIVE DUTY:
Many classmates have been killed in action (KIA) or in accidents in the service of our country. Many of their bodies, never recovered, lie in the waters of the Atlantic, Pacific, Caribbean, and Mediterranean, as well as in the United States and foreign lands. Body not recovered (BNR) and KIA is indicated where appropriate in the following listing:
James BEELER, KIA KoreaRobert MANSEAU, A/C US Frederick BLODGETT, A/C TX John McCOY, A/C BNR At sea Thomas BUTLER, A/C Richard MERGL, A/C BNR off FL Richard CLINITE, KIA BNR Korea George MOFFETT, A/C BNR Robert CONKLIN, A/C WA Edward RAWSTHORNE, KIA BNR SE Asia Edward CRUISE, A/C CA Richard SETH, BNR off Greece John FRIEND, A/C AL Stephen SKOMSKY, BNR Sargasso Sea Channing GARDNER, KIA BNR Korea Homer SMITH, KIA Vietnam Joseph GOLLNER, KIA BNR Korea Wayne SMITH, Okinawa William HARRIS, A/C AL Leland STEGMERTEN, A/C WA Irven HISSOM, BNR CAGordon STEWART, A/C North Africa James HUGHES, KIA BNR Korea William STODDARD, KIA BNR Vietnam Joseph KANEVSKY, A/C CA Fred TROESCHER, A/C BNR off Marianas Gilbert KIRK, A/C BNR S China SeaMichael VOGT, KIA BNR Vietnam Frank GOULBURN A/C WAHenry C. WHITE A/C FL 20.ACADEMIC ACHIVEMENTS: Once again, the academic record of the Class of 1949 is a close approximation because of the bashfulness of classmates in proclaiming their mental acuity. A majority of classmates have attained other degrees that the Bachelor of Science given at the Naval Academy. Noteworthy is that many have increased their knowledge by receiving advances degrees in their study efforts. The Alumni Association records and other sources indicate the following display of scholarship MASTERS DEGREES (MS, MA, MEd, MPA, etc.) - 158 MASTER OF BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION (MBA)- 48 DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY (Various fields) - 17 William BACCHUSHerman JONES Michael BONNER James MILLER Robert CARTMILL Kenneth SCHIWECK Warrington COBB Elliot SHUMAN William DOBY Robert L. SMITH Harry DONAHUE John TINKHAM Richard FRANCIS Robert WEAVER Norton HARDING Evert WILMOTH James INSKEEP Frank SCHLOSSER DOCTOR OF MEDICINE (MD) - 6 Robert A. BROWN Frederick FISHER LAWYERS (JD, LLB, LLM) - 22 Craig AALYSON Henry HOPPE Edward ADKINS William LAWLER Edward ALDERMAN Thomas LINTON Theodore ANNENBERGHugh LONGINO John BENOIT William McFARLANE William BODAGER (LLM) William MEANIX Loree COLLINSHarry MORGAN Louis DILLMANGeorge NORMAN Montraville EGERTON Philip RILEY Fred GRABOWSKY (LLM) Eugene SHINE Richard GREENWOOD* Fred WILDER 21.OTHER PURSUITS In addition to the professions noted hereinabove, our ‘49er classmates have been involved in a very broad range of businesses, activities, and professions. To name each ‘49er and his individual activities would require many more pages than is intended in this Class abstract. Nevertheless, a brief listing of endeavors and occupations follow to enable readers to see the broad range of activities in which classmates performed.
Accountants, Comptrollers, Cost Analysts, and Fiscal Managers
Architect, Complex Planning and Development
Arts, Theatre, and Entertainment
Authors (Text books and manuals, Biographies, Novels)
Business Management and Development
Civil Service: Federal, State, and Local Government
Chaplains, Reverends, Priests, Pastors, Elders, and Deacons
Commissioner and Chairman Nuclear Regulatory Commission
Company Presidents/Owners/Directors/ General Managers
Consultants, Program Managers, and Public Relations
Corporate Chairman, Chief Executive Officer, President
Deputy Director, State Department of Transportation
Farming, Agriculture, and Ranching
Furniture Manufacturing, Assembly, Sales, and Delivery
General Aviation and Flight Instruction
General Contracting and Construction
Hospital Direction and Administration
Insurance, Corporate Finance, and Investments
Leaders in Community, Civic, Charitable, and Professional Organizations and Associations
Manufacturing and Marketing
Materials Purchasing, Supply, Storage, and Inventory
Motion Picture Moguls and Film Producers
Office Managers, Law firms and other Businesses
Personnel Management and Recruitment
Petroleum Reserves Director and Oil Company Executives
Political Office Candidates, Party Workers
Professional Engineers (Aero, Civil, Computer, Electric, Electronic, Marine, Structural, Systems, etc.)
Professors, Teachers, Educators, and School Administrators
Public Affairs Assistant, U. S. Senator
Psychologists, Social Workers, and Counselors
Real Estate Appraisal, Development, Management, Sales, and Rentals
Sales Executives and Representatives
Savings and Loan and Bank Officials
Scientists, Physicists, and inventors
Secretary, Navy Relief Society
Secretary, U. S. Department of Energy
Staff Assistant, State Legislature
Stockbrokers and Investment Bankers
Tax Specialists, Retirement and Estate Planners
Trustees, Directors, and Board members
Following graduation members of the Class of 1949 scattered to the four winds. Some delayed leaving the Naval Academy to serve in marriage ceremonies as bridegrooms, best men, groomsmen, and participants in an “arch of steel”. Others enjoyed a respite of leave before proceeding to assigned duty stations. All left behind 4 years of fellowship that generated lifelong friends. Their careers in the military services and civilian life were seldom without being with or near classmates. There are many stories about these years that should be recorded as part of Class of 1949 history. Members are invited to report those events and times for posterity. Responsibility for maintaining the cohesiveness, fellowship, and communications of the class over the years has been by dedicated class members throughout the world. Leadership of activities has been headed by the following Presidents. Ralph Pete WILLIAMS1947-1957Richard William TAYLOR1957-1961 Harry Dupue TRAIN 1961-1965Dempsey BUTLER, Jr. 1965-1969 John Easley BENOIT 1969-1974Lucian CAPONE, Jr.1974-1979 John Curtis BARROW 1979-1984John Franklin BARROW 1984-1989 Ralph McD. GHORMLEY 1989-1994Alfred Clark BOUGHTON III 1994-1999
THE SECOND 50 YEARS (1995 - 2049)
Commencement of the second 50 years in the summer of 1995 wasn’t recognized as an occasion for celebration or even formally noted. It was a time of recall that the longest serving member on active duty had long since retired as had most classmates from their civilian careers. Almost all members had left the work force and entered the volunteer force. It is significant that as we entered our second half-century the class had undertaken a task, which would memorialize the Class of 1949 for the undetermined future. Before the 45th Reunion Ace BOUGHTON was informed he had been elected President of the class. The outgoing President, Ralph GHORMLEY, recommended that Ace contact the Alumni Association and introduce himself as the incoming President of the Class of 1949. During his meeting with Roland BRANDQUIST (’60), CEO of the Alumni Association, in November 1994 Ace was shown the Superintendent’s “wish list” for USNAAA projects. Number two on the list was “Refurbishment of 49 College Avenue” to a “Development Division Center”. Intrigued by the thought of a “49 House”, Ace investigated costs and commitments the class would be responsible for if the project was accepted by the Alumni Association. If the Class of 1949 was to undertake support of this project for the Alumni Association, members of the Executive Committee realized several preparatory steps should be taken. A major one was to establish the class as a tax exempt entity. Gene SHINE, Executive Vice President (lawyer) rewrote the class Constitution making the Class of 1949 a duly chartered Maryland Corporation. (Extracts appear at the CONSTITUTION page of the class website.) This action was completed November 18, 1994. Concurrently, a sufficient number of classmates voiced support of the project to provide confidence the $250,000 estimate could be met. December 1, 1994 the USNAAA Board of Trustees passed a motion to move as quickly as possible to commence renovations to the property. Following approval of the Class of 1949 Executive Committee, a letter was sent to class members announcing the project. There was overwhelming approval. A Memorandum of Agreement with the Alumni Association was signed March 13, 1995. Contributions have met renovation costs with surplus funds going into a maintenance account at the Alumni Association to meet future 49 House requirements. Refurbishment of 49 House was completed in December 1996 and officially opened by President BOUGHTON and Ron MARRYOUT (’57), CEO USNAAA, May 10, 1997. During work on the project Madelon McDONALD and Gene SHINE researched the history of 49 College Avenue and printed a brochure for distribution. Parts were used in a SHIPMATE July-August 1997 article of the official opening and A 50TH YEAR PROFILE OF THE CLASS OF 1949, U. S. NAVAL ACADEMY, OCTOBER 1999 that was available at the 50th Reunion. An article about 49 House is on the website at HISTORY. In keeping with the Alumni Association’s “Another Link in the Chain” project, during late January and early February 1999 six evening receptions were held with Class of 1949 bringing the Class of 1999 on board. Speakers at these events were Ace BOUGHTON, Wesley BROWN, Tom PARSONS, Bill READ, Gene SHINE, and Ed WALLER. Attending as hosts and hostesses were John and Flo BARROW, Mickey BOUGHTON, Crystal BROWN, Bill and Betty CALLAGHAN, Chet and Ella DAVIS, Jack and Nancy FROST, Fred and Laila GRABOWSKY, Bill and Betty GUTHRIE, Tom and Dornell KILCLINE, Mickey and Madelon McDONALD, Marty READ, Joan SHINE, Pete and DeEtte SWANSON, Jack and Pat VENABLE, Warren and Ursaula VOSSELLER, and Marty WALLER. Over 200 Class of 1999 midshipmen and other guests attended each evening. Besides the inspirational talks by the speakers, each member of Class of 1999 received a faux marble memento depicting a compass rose surrounded by an anchor chain which enclosed the class crests of ’49 and ’99 with the words “Another Link In The Chain”. In October 1999 members of the Class of 1949 assembled in Annapolis to enjoy its 50th Reunion headquartered at Loews Annapolis Hotel on West Street. Many things had changed over the years. The White Tavern was gone and to walk from the Yard to West Street had somehow become a longer, more tiring endeavor. Nevertheless, the 50th was well planned, well attended, and well remembered. With kudos to Ace, John BARROW relieved him as class President. The next 5 years involved a shocking change. Unlike the wars during which we served and those MidEast conflicts with Iraq in which many of our off-spring served we suffered attacks within the United States by a foreign enemy for the first time since 1812. September 11, 2001 a new war began – the “War Against Terrorism”. Although long out of uniform several classmates provided assistance and advice for confronting this “out of uniform” enemy. Approaching the 55th Reunion the Executive Committee considered reunion sites other than Annapolis in response to suggestions by many classmates weary of being crowded with other classes. Pete SWANSON and Jack BENOIT conducted a reconnaissance of Branson, MO facilities and the Executive Committee decided to slate reunion festivities there. The increased Homeland Security measures imposed on travel and complicated travel means reduced attendance. However, attendees enjoyed the new venue and facilities at Branson. Incoming President Harold TIPTON, Jr. relieved John BARROW while there.
Activities of the class between 2004 and 2009 were dispersed at regional sites. Joint Christmas luncheons were held, usually at Army-Navy Country Club, with Annapolis and DC area classmates primary attendees augmented by not too distant classmates. Tidewater Virginia classmates had monthly luncheons with special occasions planned for the June 3 anniversary and Christmas season. The New York area group also had planned gatherings. And - - come Army-Navy game time whether 2 or 200, whether in the stadium or at a distant shore, classmates assembled to back the Blue and Gold to victory.
The significant event of this era was the construction of the WESLEY A. BROWN FIELDHOUSE (see GALLERY) and its dedication May 10, 2008. Class of 1949 was invited to the ceremony honoring LCDR Wesley A. BROWN, USN (Ret) as the first black to graduate from the Naval Academy and recognize his continued service to the nation until retirement. Robert J. Schneller, Jr. wrote “Breaking the Color Barrier”, dedicated to Wes, about his entry and experiences at the Naval Academy. Additionally, the Naval Institute recently completed and published an oral history about Wes. September 26, 2009 President Hal TIPTON introduced the newly elected President of Class of 1949, Ewing R. McDONALD, Jr. at the 60th Reunion class meeting.
John F BARROW 1999-2004 Harold TIPTON 2004-2009
Ewing R. McDONALD 2009-2014 Robert R. TOLBERT 2014-
We are 19 years into our Second 50 Years.
70th REUNION SUMMARY
Thursday September 26 – This was arrival and check-in day at The Crowne Plaza. Cal Roberts was already established in our Class of 1949 meeting room with Devon Clouse (Mick and Madelon McDonald’s daughter) greeting attendees. It was a ‘dinner on your own’ night followed by watching the Navy vs Memphis football game in the hotel cocktail room.
Navy made a good start against a Memphis team of heavyweight linemen. Brien Wood served as a Plebe doing pushups during game. Unfortunately, 13 for Memphis was a very bad number for Navy. He made two long runs for touchdowns, topping his night with a catching a touchdown pass. Walt Marquardt commented “Oh well, we did come in second.” (Seems I remember him saying that during our 65th Reunion.
Friday September 27 – Buses took us to the Chapel for a short service. The chaplain made fitting remarks in his Reflections. I asked for a copy, but haven’t received it yet.
The highlight of the day was the luncheon at the Officers and Faculty Club, during which the new Superintendent, VADM Sean S. Buck, ’83, who relieved VADM Ted Carter, July 26, 2019, spoke. I had visited Larson Hall (the Administration building in 1945) to get information for introducing him before his talk. I got a copy of his biography which with a “Preferred introduction: The 63rd Superintendent, VADM Sean Buck.” In meeting him before he spoke, I informed him his audience included nonagenarian Class of 1949 members, Navy Juniors, and a couple of grandchildren - - our class “family.” I felt he used this information in his remarks about his interview by SECNAV before being appointed Superintendent. He is the son of CAPT Edward Guy Buck, ‘48A, and he told SECNAV he would feel he was coming home if appointed as superintendent. He fielded questions by Al Thomson about the collisions at sea last year and others quite well.
After his talk I told him my regrets that Ed Waller, our ’49 superintendent wasn’t there. In his younger years Buck was a TACCO officer in P-3s, the result of Ed’s Program Manager days of the ANEW program. He knows Ed and family well and appreciated my warning of the audience.
Following the luncheon, a bus tour of the Yard began. Unfortunately, its first stop was at the Visitor Center where the docent guide had riders watch a “12 minute” film that took an hour. The tour didn’t get to many of the sites planned.
Friday evening was another “dinner on your own.” My family chose O’Leary’s in Eastport.
Saturday, September 28 – A class meeting was held at 0930. Ursula Vosseler, Assistant Class Secretary, reported Class of 1949 membership. There were 790 graduates and 320 non-graduates totaling 1131. (some entrants left Plebe summer.) Loses before our 2014 reunion were 535. Lost since the last reunion were 143. Surviving Graduates are 136 (the status of 6 is unknown)). The Alumni Assoc. database lists a total of 160 graduates and non-graduates surviving. Surviving non-graduates is known to be 25.
Rick Claytor, as Acting Class Treasurer reported there is a Class of 1949 Checking Account at the Alumni Assoc. with a balance of $20494.31. There is an account of interest at the Alumni Assoc., the 1949 House Maintenance account, which has a balance of $207,242 based on a gift of $259, and investment interest of $556, as of Sep 20, 2019. (Note: 89 members of the class donated over $1,000 and hundreds of members donated more than $500 to fund ‘49 House restoration during Ace Boughton’s presidency. Left-over funds went into the Maintenance account to perpetuate its existence after we are gone. It is our footprint in Annapolis.)
Rick reported the status of our two NFCU accounts. The checking account had about $8,000 in it, but it amount became fluid as both he and I were paying bills that day. The savings account has a balance $33,403.67. (Over $22,000 of this was donated by 39 classmates in answer to my plea December 2017 to establish a 4-5 years cost of operations of the class.)
My report of the presently considered plan to sell Ogle Hall and ’49 House to fund the new Alumni Assoc./Foundation office and event building on College Creek raised a proposal by John Bacon to establish a chair or something at USNA, so the Class of 1949 would be remembered. A vote was called with 16 voting members agreeing with John’s motion. I voted against it. A committee of two, John Bacon and Madelon McDonald are a committee of two to evaluate possible alternatives and costs to the class.
Buses left the hotel hourly to the Visitor Center, Museum, and Midshipman Store between 10:30 am and 2:30 pm
I took my family on tour of the Yard and North Severn Facility and Sports Venues. They saw new buildings and old, the cemetery and columbarium, and many memorials to the dead in battle. Also, the burial marker of Senator McCain.
That evening was the banquet was preceded by cocktails and greeting attendees. Willetta Brown gave a talk about her father and our classmate Wesley A. Brown. Unfortunately, there was not a 16th Company-mate attending; however, I knew Wes Plebe summer, shared a table with him and Crystal (his second wife), and was in Subic Bay where he rebuilt the waterfront. I said our class was a class of young men that aspired to other careers rather than being in the Navy, citing several classmates that achieved fame and fortune. Then I said Wes was a leader in setting the path at USNA for blacks. Then I gave her a USNA plaque engraved “Wesley A. Brown – A LEADER – Class of 1949”.
After the presentation I asked Pete Williams, our first president - - 2/C and 1/C years at USNA and two 4-year terms after graduation - - to say a few words. He did a fine job. In thanking him, I reported only John F. Barrow served as president 10 years - - two 5-year terms.
Someone got ‘49ers attending to gather for pictures. Being 15 of us 6 seated and 9 standing one of the guys started singing. We did about three songs. I anointed us as the fabulous “Forty-Niner Fifteen”. My daughter Carol got it on video that I hope will get on the class website.
There is nothing finer . . . .70th REUNION SUMMARY