Alumni vets receive “Quilts of Valor”

Alumni vets receive “Quilts of Valor”

Nov. 13, 2018

Maryville College’s Student Veterans Association hosted its first Military Alumni Reunion during Homecoming 2018 and, as a part of the event, honored five veterans each with a “quilt of freedom” made by members of the Friendsville Quilts of Valor (QOV) chapter.

Established in 2003, the QOV Foundation seeks to “cover service members and veterans touched by war with comforting and healing Quilts of Valor.”

Prior to making the presentations, Anne Martak of the Friendsville chapter explained the origins of QOV and how the non-profit has helped veterans recover from war.

According to Dennis Taylor, U.S. Army veteran and local QOV operator, the organization has 8,000 volunteer quilters nationwide, and more than 186,000 quilts have been made. More than 800 of those were presented to veterans in Tennessee last year.

Those receiving quilts included:

  • Col. Wilburn Rufus Bowers ’60, who served in the US Marine Corps from 1955 until 1988.
  • James Lawrence Hogue, Jr., ’68, who served in Vietnam with the Army from 1969 until 1970.
  • Chief Master Sgt. Arthur Henry Hafner III ’72, who served in the Army, ANG and Air Force from 1966 until 1969 and from 1977 until 2003.
  • James Leonard Burkins, ’74, who served in the Army from 1970 until 1975.
  • Steven “Scott” Moss ’96, who is currently serving in the U.S. Navy and is the commanding officer of one of the largest aviation squadrons in the U.S. Navy. His squadron is part of the Navy’s TACAMO (Take Charge And Move Out) community. Their mission is to provide survivable, endurable, and reliable communications between the president of the United States and the triad of U.S. submarines, bombers and missile silos during nuclear conflict.
  • David Carlisle Johnson ’15, who served in the U.S. Marine Corps during Operation Desert Storm as a 19-year old. Johnson was instrumental in the founding the Maryville College Student Veterans Association, the current Military Student Center, and other veteran-related programs on campus. He is currently employed by the U.S. Department of the Interior.

Alumni veterans attending the reunion also toured the Military Student Center in Bartlett Hall, met current student veterans and were invited to ride in military vehicles in the Homecoming Parade.

Maryville College is ideally situated in Maryville, Tenn., between the Great Smoky Mountains National Park and Knoxville, the state's third largest city. Founded in 1819, it is the 12th oldest institution of higher learning in the South and maintains an affiliation with the Presbyterian Church (USA). Known for offering its students a rigorous and highly personal experience that includes an undergraduate research requirement, Maryville College is a nationally ranked institution of higher learning that successfully joins the liberal arts and professional preparation. Total enrollment for the Fall 2018 semester is 1,154.