Honoring CNC's First Decade Veterans: Navy and Coast Guard
Updated November 27, 2020
by A. Jane Chambers
Parts 1 & 2of this series honored CNC's 61 First Decaders who served in our nation's Army and also the two young men killed in action (KIA): Ric Bahr (Army) and Pat Giguere (Marines). This second article honors the 23 First Decaders who served in the Navy and 2 who served in the Coast Guard, plus our first CNC president--H. Westcott (Scotty) Cunningham (Navy). The third article in the series is a tribute to our 11 MARINE veterans, plus CNC's second President--James C. (Jim) Windsor, and also gives more information about Marine Pilot Pat Giguere's heroism. The last, but not least, article will honor our Air Force veterans.
Scotty Cunningham (family photo), a Navy lieutenant in WW2., served two years in the Pacific commanding a PT (Patrol and Torpedo) boat, when John F. Kennedy, whom he knew, was doing the same in his PT 109. It was very hazardous duty; many men and boats were lost. Cunningham served again during the Korean War, but having contracted malaria in the southwest Pacific, he couldn't fight in Korea; instead he served as a military briefer at the Pentagon. From 1953 through 1970, he was also an active member of the Naval Reserve, retiring at the rank of Captain. Our website's tab ARCHIVES, sub tab FIRST DECADE HISTORY, has more information about Scotty's military experience.
Internet drawing of ELCO style PT boat.
Anthony Lee (Tony) Williamson (above left) enlisted in the Navy in November 1966 and was discharged honorably in July 1970 as an Aviation Machinist Mate 2nd Class (PO2: Petty Officer). He then attended CNC 1970 -73, completing his BS in business administration in 1973. The photo above was taken January, 1967 at the USN Recruit Training Command (RTC), Great Lakes, IL--familiar to Navy veterans.
After 3 semesters at CNC, Robert A. Slusser (above right), served in the Navy ten years (1965-75) and, like Tony, was also in the field of aviation maintenance, leaving as an Aviation Maintenance Administration man First Class (AZ1). He served in Japan and the Philippines. His photo above was taken in a aircraft hanger at the US Naval Air Station at Sangley Point, Philippines in 1969.
After earning his AA degree at CNC in 1968 and BS in psychology at ODU in 1969, John William Moore (left above) served three years on active duty in the Navy (1969-72), then four years in the Naval Reserve while also earning his MA in psychology. He left the Navy as Musician 2nd Class (MU2). John's picture was taken aboard the USS Columbus in January of 1971. After earning a Ph.D. in psychology, he became a professor and then senior systems computer analyst at Belmont University.
After completing his AA at CNC in 1965 Raymond Alan (Ray) Pepe (right above as Ensign) joined the Naval Reserve, enabling him to serve his country while also earning his baccalaureate degree at William and Mary. He was on active duty for two years (1967-69) on the USS Dewey (DLG-14), serving six months of that time in Vietnam on search and rescue missions (Jan.- June 1968). He left the reserve in 1994 at the rank of Commander (CDR).
David A. Spriggs (photos above) enlisted in the Naval Reserve in May 1964, then enrolled at CNC as a freshmanthat fall. After receiving his letter of acceptance from the U.S. Naval Academy and completing his first semester at CNC, he entered the Naval Academy on June 30, 1965 and graduated June 4, 1969, commissioned as Ensign. He served on active duty until June 30, 1980, then accepted a commission as lieutenant in the Naval Reserve. He retired as Captain, USNR on June 30, 1998, having served a total of 34 years and 2 months. The left photo shows David as LTJG aboard the USS Leary (DD-879) at Valetta, Malta, in July 1970. The right photo shows him in his Navy Captain uniform in Norfolk in July, 2004.
Thomas E. (Tom) Witty, Jr. (deceased), earned his AA at CNC in 1965, his BS at William & Mary in 1967, and his DDS at MCV in 1971--after which he joined the Navy. He served two years active duty (1971- 1973) as a dental officer on the USS Vulcan (AR-5). The left photo shows Tom as a LTJG. The right, a promotional picture for the USS Vulcan, shows him examining a patient's teeth. He also served in the Naval Reserve for fifteen years, being discharged as a LCDR-R.
Dr.James D. (Jim) Lowell, MD (photos above) first attended CNC in 1965-66, while also serving in the US Coast Guard Reserve 1964-66 (Boot Camp photo left). After leaving the Coast Guard, he served in the US Army Reserve 1966-70. While also in the USAR, Jim enrolled in the Riverside School of Professional Nursing at Riverside Hospital, Newport News--the first male in the hospital's nursing program. In 1967-68, he and the other student nurses were bused to CNC for required academic classes. After earning his RN in 1970, and also completing Army Reserve service, Jim worked night shifts at Riverside Hospital while earning a BS in psychology at CNC, completed in 1972.
He then earned his MD in 1977 at MCV and completed a residency in family medicine at the Univ. of Manitoba, Winnipeg, Canada. His medical career afterwards included being a fly-in doctor at a reservation in Manitoba, practicing rural family medicine, having a private practice (80% obstetrics), and working in occupational medicine. Currently Jim directs the Occupational Medicine Clinic at Good Shepherd Medical Center, Longview, TX. After half a century, Jim still fits into his winter dress Coast Guard uniform (2015 photo, right).
The above photo of the 1970 Veterans Club at CNC is from page 66 of the 1970 Trident. The following students, listed alphabetically, have not yet been located: ROBERT HUBERT, TOM HOGGE, JOHN MARCHI, BILL NEEDHAM, CLINTON SWIFT, GEORGE WILLIAMS. Contact us if you can help locate any of them, please! Thank you!