My 25-Year Class Reunion at West Point

Some of the Hogs assembled after the review and class picture
Some of the Hogs assembled after the review and class picture

Last weekend, I attended my 25-year class reunion from West Point.  It was a great opportunity to catch up with old friends, enjoy fall in the Hudson Highlands, renew relationships, and beat VMI soundly in football.  My company, the H-4 Hogs, tends to have high participation at these events, and this year was no different.  My guess is that we had the highest percentage participation of any company in my class.  In the above picture are some of the folks from my company:  (bottom row) Bob Welch, Scott MacPherson, Vinny O’Neil (celebrated author of mystery books), me, John Todd (middle row) Terrence Peterson, Jeff Girard, Virginia (Condit) Todd, (top row) Bob Brouwer, Mike McGurk, Dave Stader, and Noel (Finch) Guarino.

Cadets marching past "old grads" of Class of 1985
Cadets marching past “old grads” of Class of 1985

It is traditional at these alumni events for the “old grads” to be on the Plain as part of the reviewing party.  At every previous reunion that I attended, the alumni review was rained out.  I’ve marched in many of these parades at West Point, and execpt for my graduation parade, this is the only one I didn’t want to be cancelled!  Anyway, this year, the weather was beautiful, and we were able to view the pass in review from the Plain.

View of West Point in the Fall
View of West Point in the Fall

You can’t beat the Hudson Highlands in the Fall.  Look at this picture!  The temperture was cool, but not cold.

 
When were Plebes, VMI spanked us in football.  I was one of the guards designated to keep people off the field after the game and became embroiled in the brawl preciptated by the VMI “rats” celebrating their victory.  This year we hammered them 29-7.  I typically only watch one football game a year:  Army Navy.  It’s been a disappointing decade.  It was fun to watch Army play good ball, like when we were Firsties (seniors).  It was even better to get revenge on our Plebe-year humiliation. 
Hogs assembled at Foley Athletic Center
Hogs assembled at Foley Athletic Center

Our post game tailgate was in the new Foley athletic center.  Because there are folks in this picture who were not in the previous one, I’ll name them:  (front row) Mike McGurk in his festooned cadet bath robe, Jeff Girard, Bob Brouwer, Dave Stader, (middle row) Willie Campos, Terrence Peterson, Bob Welch, me, VA Todd, John Todd, (back row) Randy Lane, Pete Edmonds, Tony Emmi, and Calvin Johnson.

 
My only complaint with these reunions is the frentic pace.  After I meet some friends from other companies and regiments and from classes we had together, I really want time to hang out with the Hogs.  In fact at the tailgate, most of us gravitated to a large table to bore our spouses with tales of the old days.  I am going to propose to the Hogs than in a year or two we all go on a cruise together.  While I have been avoiding a cruise, I think that is the ideal venue.  We could all meet in the evenings for dinner,  but engage in day-time and off-shore activities in smaller groups or on our own. 
 
In any event, I’m glad we went to the reuion.  I had a really good time, and I look forward to the next one.
 

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