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Scenes from The University of Rhode Island

URI ROTC to induct 15 outstanding alumni, including first woman, into high-tech Hall of Fame on Saturday

Media Contact: Ericka Tavares, 401-874-2935

KINGSTON, R.I., Nov. 15, 2013 – In the shadow of Veterans Day, more than 300 people from across the country will gather at the University of Rhode Island Saturday, Nov. 16, for the Army ROTC Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony to celebrate the remarkable achievements of ROTC alumni with friends and family.

The ceremony, which begins at 9 a.m. at the URI Memorial Union, will feature the unveiling of a more modern and attractive ROTC Hall of Fame that has been completely renovated and features state-of-the-art electronics. The improved Hall of Fame displays an interactive, large screen TV, which contains the pictures and biographies of the inductees and historical videos of the time periods during which they served. The new Hall of Fame was funded by alumni contributions and proceeds from the annual Lt. Col. (Retired) Paul F. Helweg, Jr. Memorial Golf Tournament.

Of particular note among the honorees are:

• The first woman honorary inductee, Assistant Dean Emerita Jane O’Connell Stich, ’62, MS ’69, and MBA ’83;
• Maj. Gen. Kevin R. McBride, ’80, who, as the adjutant general of the State of Rhode Island, is commander of Army and Air National Guard;
• Brig. Gen. Charles A. Flynn, ’85, the brother of Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, a 2011 inductee;
• Army 2nd Lt. Joseph D. Fortin, who graduated from Roger Williams University in 2008, and was killed in action in Operation Iraqi Freedom.

“The inductees made significant achievements in the Army, in their communities, and in their private lives,“ said David A. Accetta, ’87, a retired Army officer and member of the ROTC Alumni Chapter Board of Directors. “Some of them were killed in action and many were involved in very important battles in the history of our country and were highly decorated for bravery.”

The ROTC program involves students from URI, Roger Williams University, and Salve Regina University. The URI program is known as Cramer’s Saber Battalion. Also being inducted will be:

• Maj. Gen. John H. Capalbo, U.S. Army, retired, '60
• Col. Charles V. McCaffrey, U.S. Army, retired, '34
• Lt. Col. William G. Gessner, U.S. Army, retired, '75
• Lt. Col. Chester W. Sutphen, U.S. Army, retired, '79
• Maj. Kenneth B. Goff Jr., U.S. Army, '66
• Maj. Kenneth M. Perkins, U.S. Army, retired, '40
• Lt. George W. Martin, U.S. Navy, '43
• Lt. Christopher M. DiMaio, Medical Corps, U.S. Navy, '62
• Capt. Henry R. Phillips, U.S. Army, 62
• 1st Lt. Charles Yaghoobian Jr., U.S. Marine Corps, 65
• 1st Lt. Carmen DeCubellis Jr., U.S. Army, '68

Key board members in the ROTC Hall of Fame Renovation include Gen. (Retired) Leon LaPorte, URI ROTC Alumni Chapter President and Col. (Retired) Bill MacKinlay, Col. (Retired) Tom Heaney, and Marna Ashburn Krajeski. Key board members in the ROTC Hall of Fame selection and induction include Col. (Retired) Phil Saulnier, who is the Hall of Fame chairman, inductee Stich, LaPorte, and MacKinlay.

The University of Rhode Island and the Memorial Student Union assisted in the development of the new Hall of Fame and worked closely with the ROTC Alumni Chapter to improve the display and surrounding space.