Lee camaraderie

Notice of Lee Barnes Passing - October 25th

From Chris LeBlanc: Class of -72, hit your knees....The Lord just took Lee Roy Barnes, Jr. home just a few minutes ago. The doctors were weaning him off the ventilator and it appears his heart just could not take it. He’s gone… Lee has now just met his father for the first time, back on the reservation. For those that might not be aware, Lee Roy Sr. (for the love of me now, I cannot remember his tribal name) was an American Soldier, too, and was lost during the Korean War. He is buried in Kansas.
I will let folks know when I can what decisions are made for burial. Lee's son Chris is not sure yet. Stand by for more news, and stand up for a great American and Soldier.
Lee was in A-1.

Lee Barnes - Biography

Lee Barnes joined the Army as an Armor Cavalry Second Lieutenant upon graduation from West Point in 1972; he retired at the rank of Colonel, in 1997.

His service included duty stations in Korea, Germany and United States. He served as a tank Platoon Leader, Headquarters Company Commander, Armored Cavalry Troop Commander, and Tank Battalion Commander (concurrently serving as the Tank Regiment Commander for the Opposing Forces at the National Training Center). His staff time included battalion personnel (S1and Adjutant), logistics (S4) and operations, planning, and training (Army National Guard Advisor, Battalion XO, Brigade S3 and XO, and Division G3). His final posting was as the Chief of the Advanced Concept Office for Army Forces Command.

Lee joined Mystech Associates, which joined Northrop Grumman Corporation through a series of mergers. Lee served as Subject Matter Expert, Business Area Manager, Department Director, National Account Manager, Business Development Manager, and finally, as the Corporate Lead Executive, Orlando, retiring in 2012.

Lee has served as an independent consultant, but chooses to remain RETIRED, except for his volunteer activities, fishing, golfing and grand parenting.

Lee initially volunteered in 2011, to help with the Camaraderie Foundation annual golf tournament, “Pars and Stripes Forever”. He was elected to the board of directors in January, 2013. He was elected as Programs Director in 2015, elected Vice Chair of the Board in 2017, as Chair in Jan 2018, and in Jan 2019, re-elected as Chair for an additional one-year term.

'72 Classmates in Orlando

Here is the picture of all 72 classmates at the Cape Canaveral National Cemetary-A1 plus Chris Le Blanc, Steve Main and Ben Martin.

Lee Roy was well remembered and honored by many friends and associates.  Skip did a great job sharing some remembrance for A-1 and Chris did the same. Ann was very appreciative of the company turnout!
  • Leebarns1

Classmates at Lee Barnes Funeral

Going around the table starting on the left are:
Chris LeBlanc; Tod Wilson; Murro Martens; Bill Guarino; Ray Idzior; Paul Oskvarek; Lee’s son Christopher; Skip Ash; Tom Waller; Steve Curtis; Tom Pawlowski; Steve Main

West Point Grad News

COL(R) Palmatier ’74 Fighting COVID in Haiti

COL(R) Palmatier ’74 Fighting COVID in Haiti COL (R) Bruce Palmatier ’74 is helping lead the effort to fight COVID-19 in Haiti. As volunteer treasurer for Seeds of Hope for Haiti, Inc., he and his team are working with an in-country partner to provide Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), COVID-19 care and education to the remote mountain village of Grand Boulage, Haiti.

Haiti, the poorest nation in the Western Hemisphere, has experienced natural and man-made disasters that have devastated the country’s domestic capacity for providing its citizens the basic healthcare that we in the U.S. take for granted. The situation has only worsened over the past year with tremendous social and political upheaval, according to Palmatier. Gang activity is especially bad in and around Port-au-Prince. Now COVID-19 has hit Haiti.

“Confirmed cases appear low,” Palmatier said, “but testing is almost non-existent, so the actual number is likely orders of magnitude higher. Social distancing is largely ignored because so much of their meager economy depends on ‘marchants’ (street merchants pronounced “marshants”) to feed their families. No work? No food.”

The inability now to travel to Haiti has also seriously hampered their team’s ability to stay connected with the people of Haiti.

Last year, Seeds of Hope for Haiti opened a clinic in Grand Boulage, located in the central plateau about 13 miles northeast of the Port-Au-Prince airport. This clinic is the target for their COVID-19 support.

Their goal is to provide PPE and COVID-19 care at the clinic to a population already struggling with food insecurity, poverty and political division.

WPAOG would like to thank Bruce and all of the West Point grads doing their part to help during this pandemic.

BG Belanger ’91 New Deputy Commanding General HRC Fort Knox

U.S. Army Human Resources Command welcomed Brigadier General Kris Belanger, a Wantage, New Jersey native, new Deputy Commanding General during an Investiture Ceremony June 1.

In her new role, Belanger will assist HRC’s commanding general, Major General Joseph Calloway, in executing the full spectrum of human resources programs that develop leaders, build Army readiness, and promote and sustain the well-being of Soldiers, veterans and their families.

Belanger is dual-hatted as HRC’s Director, Reserve Personnel Management Directorate, which is charged with increasing efficiency, transparency and accessibility when processing Army Reserve personnel actions.

“I’m excited for the opportunity to serve in such a prestigious organization at a pivotal time in our nation’s history. I especially look forward to being a value-added partner to the command, the Fort Knox community, and the U.S. Army Reserve,” said Belanger.

Most recently, Belanger served as the commander for the 85th United States Army Reserve Support Command in Arlington Heights, Illinois; a command consisting of over 4,000 Soldiers in 45 Army Reserve battalions across 25 states in direct support to First Army.

Justice ’02 Honored by American Airlines

Justice ’02 Honored by American AirlinesLTC Kent Justice was honored by American Airlines for his heroic actions in response to an incident that occurred May 4 on board American airlines Flight 60 from Tokyo to Dallas/Fort Worth.

It became apparent that there was a passenger that presented a clear threat to the safety of the aircraft, the passengers, and crew on board. Kent was the first passenger to respond to assist the flight attendant nearest the individual at that time, and with the later assistance of some other military personnel on board, neutralized the threat for the duration of the flight.

The incident, later categorized as a serious incident by the airline, caused the flight to divert to Los Angeles International Airport. In Los Angeles, police, firemen, medical crew, and other authorities removed the individual from the aircraft and assessed the extensive damage done to the aircraft. Eventually resuming travel to Dallas/Fort Worth, arriving without further incident.

A flight attendant said, “I have never seen anything like this in my 33-year career.”

Class Notes Updates This Week

Class Notes Updates This WeekThe following classes have added updates this week to their Class Notes pages. 1956 | 1958 | 1959 | 1962 | 1965 | 1966 | 1972 | 1973 | 1980 | 1981 | 1996 | 1998. Class Notes

6/9-6/12 Washington, DC SACC Is Going Virtual

The Service Academy Career Conference (SACC) is dedicated to assisting our alumni in their career transitions, no matter the location or platform. Now more than ever, we recognize how important it is for our alumni to make valuable career and educational connections. Register now to join us online!

  • Participate in three days of employer webinars June 9-11
  • Connect virtually with recruiters from industry-leading employers on June 12
  • Meet with companies who are actually hiring!
  • New & improved virtual career event platform!
  • Employers are already reaching out to prospective candidates for introductory, pre-screen phone calls
  • Do not miss out on this opportunity to get a job offer during this financial crisis

Text “careerservices” to 51555 to stay up to date on hot jobs, webinars and announcements from the WPAOG Career Services team.


40th Anniversary of Graduation Class of ’80

We were thrilled of this National History Day project developed by two high school students. This project reflects all of their hard work and research, a documentary on the Class of 1980, “Women at West Point: Breaking Barriers of the Long Gray Line,”.

Today is the 40th Anniversary of the graduation of the West Point Class of '80, a wonderful day to showcase the efforts of these two students and to honor all who graduated that day.

Where Are They Now? William R. (Bill) McKinney '66

Sport: Football
Current Career: Retired
Former Career: Consultancy in National Security Affairs

William R. (Bill) McKinney, during a distinguished U.S. Army career spanning 30 years coupled with his 20-year civilian career, established himself as a national security expert on Northeast Asia with focus on the Korean Peninsula. He has been a valuable resource for insights into Asia for the U.S. government, U.S. businesses, and international organizations. 

Colonel McKinney capped his 30-year career, which included 15 years in Korea, as the Defense and Army Attaché at the U.S. Embassy in Seoul from 1990 to 1996. Prior to this, he served as Chief of the U.S. Military Liaison Office to the Korean Defense Ministry; as Chief of the Far East Branch in the Political Military Division of the Army Headquarters at the Pentagon; and as the Political-Military Advisor to the Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific Affairs at the State Department. As an infantry officer he was assigned to the 2nd Infantry Division, 101st Airborne Division, and 25th Infantry Division.

During his military service, including combat in Vietnam with the 101st Airborne Division, Colonel McKinney received the Silver Star, two Bronze Stars including one for Valor, the Army Legion of Merit, the Defense Superior Service Medal, the Combat Infantry Badge and other decorations.

As an independent consultant in international relations since his retirement from Federal Service in May 2016, Mr. McKinney has provided advice and assistance on Korean affairs to numerous clients, both in and out of the U.S. Government.  He has also authored/co-authored articles on Korea for 38 North, the National Interest magazine, and the Pacific Forum. Read more.

Parachute Team - Where Astronauts Learn to Fly

Parachute Team - Where Astronauts Learn to FlyThe mission of the West Point Parachute Team is to educate, train, and inspire cadets to develop leadership skills and build self-confidence in an in extremis context.

West Point accomplishes this by providing the opportunity to work toward three specific and challenging goals: training freefall students, conducting precision freefall demonstrations, and competing and winning at the national level.

Photo: The 1995 West Point Parachute Team, which included future astronauts Frank Rubio ’98 (left) and Drew Morgan ’98 (center left)

Because the team is called upon for outreach demonstrations, West Point considers it a “support club,” with professional oversight from the Deputy Commandant and some noncommissioned officers assigned to USCC. One of its missions as a support club is to “jump in” the game ball for home football games. However, the team also competes in the U.S. Parachute Association (USPA) National Collegiate Parachuting Championships over the holiday break, going head-to-head against the U.S. Air Force Academy and other schools that have sport parachute teams. Approximately 75 collegiate skydivers compete in this event, the oldest and largest collegiate skydiving competition in the world. Consequently, the West Point Parachute Team is also considered one of the Department of Physical Education’s “competitive clubs.” With DPE support, they meet the requirement that every cadet will participate in one of the following divisions of sport: intercollegiate, competitive club or company athletics. Read more.

Williams ’72 Inducted Into Owens Campus Hall of Fame

Williams ’72 Inducted Into Owens Campus Hall of FameAllen “Jerry” Williams was inducted into the Delaware Technical Community College Owens Campus Hall of Fame on Friday, April 12. Williams worked for Delaware Tech from July 1992 to June 2012 and established the Environmental Training Center (ETC) in Georgetown. That facility has received national and international recognition for the quality of training it provides to individuals in the water and wastewater industries.

Williams grew up in Wilmington and enjoyed a 40-year professional career that can be divided exactly in half - 20 years of service to his country as an officer in the U.S. Army and 20 years as a college instructor and department chair.

Photo: L-R, Allen “Jerry” Williams, his wife Stephanie, his son Garrett, and family friend Maribeth Dockety, director of Human Resources at the Owens Campus in Georgetown at the 2019 Hall of Fame ceremony at Delaware Tech’s Owens Campus in Georgetown

Williams graduated from West Point and started as an infantry officer in 1972. He completed airborne and ranger school training the following year. Three years later, he switched to aviation and became a helicopter pilot. His deployments took him across the United States and all around the world.

He retired in 1992 and was hired to work in Delaware Tech’s adult education division. In 1993, Williams worked with local and regional directors to apply and obtain an Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) grant to build the ETC at Delaware Tech’s Owens Campus. The purpose of the ETC was to train and certify Delaware’s water, wastewater, and on-site operators. Opening in 1997, Williams was named the first acting director and department chair. Read more.

Serve The Long Gray Line on The Board & Advisory Council

WPAOG is putting out a call to action for all graduates!

Have you ever considered serving on the WPAOG Board of Directors or Advisory Council or do you know someone who would be an excellent candidate?

Nominations for the WPAOG Board of Directors and Advisory Council are now being accepted through July 1, 2020.

Find out more about the nomination process at: westpointaog.org/nominationpolicy