All Society members are encouraged to come out at 2 pm on December 8 at Magruders on Fort Jackson to participate in the running of the West Point Society of Columbia before we kick back and watch Army beat Navy.
Last Friday, 27 July, a sturdy cohort of graduates young and old met for companionship and alcoholic beverage consumption (in moderation, of course) at the Grand restaurant, a new eatery at 1621 Main in downtown Columbia. The Grand sits in the space previously occupied by the old Army-Navy store.
Hearty souls in attendance included Pat and Ann Canary (’62), Jim and Kelly Morris (’77), Mike Salas (’14), Jerrod Fussnecker (’04), Jack Poole (’87), and your wordsmith (sorry if I left out anyone’s name–I left early. The approach of old age continues relentlessly).
And what a place is the Grand. A beautiful bar area, a dining room, and, get this: a 7 lane bowling alley in the back. And the lanes are available if you wish to roll a game or two.
The menu is loaded with appealing appetizers and entrees and features seafood dishes (salmon, shrimp, tuna) in abundance. When you go, prepare to have a great time, but don’t leave home with a light wallet. Yes, it is a little pricey. But you’re not going there every night.
There will be no BH hour for August as we will be meeting with the West Point Parents Club of South Carolina to stuff boodle boxes and watch the Army Black Knights beat Duke Blue Devils. Details will available here and on our Facebook page. Make sure to RSVP by August 17th so we can get a good head count!
If you are looking for an opportunity to participate in one of our chief activities and community outreach programs, the West Point Leadership Award program, please read on.
West Point Leadership Awards Program
We present the West Point Leadership Award at participating high schools, usually at their end-of-the-year academic awards ceremonies. We provide the school faculty and administration a set of selection criteria that mirrors what we are looking for in competitive cadet candidates (chiefly strength in academics, athletics, and demonstrated leadership in school and/or community activities) and ask them to select their top student leader (junior class). We then present the recipient a certificate in a nice cover emblazoned with the West Point Crest as well as a plaque that is displayed permanently at the school.
We typically present the award at the beginning of each ceremony, alongside alumni from schools like Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Washington & Lee, etc. The presenter will deliver an approximate two-minute introduction to the award, which is a great informational tool to promote West Point, its mission, and its numerous well-known graduates. Upon presenting the award, the presenter is free to exit the stage – we are not expected to stay for the duration of the ceremony.
This program is a fantastic and effective way to promote West Point to students, parents, and school faculty in our community. As an admissions officer, I can tell you that we have significantly more candidates apply each year from schools where we present the awards.
This is also a great way for members of our Society to be involved in a very meaningful series of events. The time commitment is small. I ask members to please contact me directly to find out more or volunteer to present an award.
Jack Poole ’87
Upcoming WPLA Presentations (as of 30 April):
19 April: Ridge View High School (presenter Jack Poole ’87)
28 April: AC Flora High School (presenter LTC (Ret) Dwayne Gatson) 4 May: Irmo HS, 1800 hrs (need presenter)
8 May: Lugoff-Elgin HS, 1000 hrs (presenter Mrs. Susan Harrison (parent)
10 May: Spring Valley HS, 1800 hrs (presenter Jack Poole ’87)
11 May: Heathwood Hall Episcopal School, 1400 hrs (presenter John Wall ’06)
16 May: Hammond School, 1000 hrs (presenter Michael Turner ’87) 16 May: Blythewood HS, 1830 hrs (need presenter)
31 May: Dreher HS, 1800 hrs (presenter Jim Morris ’77)
If you are interested in presenting an award please email Jack Poole ’87 directly. 👇
The West Point Society of Columbia celebrated Founders Day on February 24 at the Capital City Club in Columbia, South Carolina. The event was well attended by local Academy Graduates, members of the West Point Parents Club, and cadet candidates for the class of 2022. Over 80 guests, from youngest graduate, 1LT Emily Bye ‘14, to oldest graduate, LTC (R) Wayne Smith ’49, attended and much positive feedback has been received regarding the event. Charlie Eadie ’07, President of the WPS Columbia, filled the role of Master of Ceremonies.
Following opening remarks, Dr. Richard Conant, a Distinguished Professor Emeritus at USC and his wife,delivered a moving a cappella performance of the Nation Anthem. Those gathered were then led in a collective reading of the Cadet Prayer by Chaplain (MAJ) Light Shin ’99. Guests participated in traditional toasts, including one given in remembrance of our fallen service-members. For their guest speaker the Society was honored to have BG Cindy Jebb ‘82, Dean of Academics at United States Military Academy, give a very energetic talk about how West Point is preparing tomorrow’s leaders to solve undefined problems. Before concluding the event, those assembled joined voices and sang the Alma Mater.
A special thanks to CPTs Josh and Chelsea Linvill (’08 and ’11) for their tireless effort in coordinating this year’s Founders Day brunch. More photos can also be found on our social media pages.
Picking back up after the holiday season the West Point Society of Columbia had its first Benny Havens of the year. Attending were six graduates and family from year groups ranging from 1977 to 2007. In a surprise twist of the night we were pleasantly joined by a member of the Capital City Club – Columbia board of governors, COL (R) Vic Robertson, whose son graduated from West Point back in 1979. We also met Dr. Richard Conant, a Distinguished Professor Emeritus at USC, who agreed to sing the National Anthem at our upcoming Founders Day brunch.
As the hour unfolded, connections were made, ties were strengthened, and reminiscences shared.
Photo: L-R, Jim Morris ’77, Society Treasurer; Kelly Hynes Morris, MD, PhD; Dan Beatty ’90, former Society President; Charlie Eadie ’07 (behind camera), Society President; Jack Poole ‘87, Admissions Chair; Vic Robertson, West Point Parent.
The West Point Society of Columbia, SC recently held its monthly social hour. Attending were six graduates from year groups ranging from 1980 to 2007. Those in attendance shared many stories from their times as cadets and life thereafter with reminiscences of chicken crispitos (and other mess hall favorites), plebe swimming, and the new cadet marchback.
Photo: L-R, Drew Shearer ‘80; Buddy Holbert ‘85, Decade Representative; Charlie Eadie ‘07, Society President; Jack Poole ‘87, Admissions Chair; Rob Watts ‘05; John Wall ‘06, Society Secretary and Decade Representative.