ROTC battalions honor veterans

first_imgOn Sept. 10, 2001, Richard Evans was a civilian with plans to marry his fiancée later that year. This Veterans Day, 12 years later, he is an active-duty captain in the U.S. Army, a survivor of four deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan and a father of four. “It’s an awesome thing when the country gets behind and supports us [on Veterans Day],” Evans said. “I think we’ve learned some really hard lessons from the past. “As a soldier, I’ve felt nothing but gratitude from South Bend, Mishawaka and Notre Dame in particular. I’m very thankful for that and the opportunity to be here.” Since July, Evans has served as an assistant professor of military science at Notre Dame and a member of the Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC) cadre, or staff. Despite his prior tours of duty, Evans said he does not focus on his own service on Veterans Day. “It’s a time for me to reflect,” Evans said. “I’ve been in the military for 12 years. I’ve deployed four times, so I think about all the great men and women I’ve had the opportunity to serve with. I think about the sacrifices my family has made to allow me to pursue this career.” Tyler Thomas, a senior Naval ROTC midshipman and tri-military commander of the three Notre Dame ROTC branches, said Army and Air Force cadets and Navy midshipmen held a 24-hour vigil at the Clarke War Memorial fountain starting Sunday evening in honor of Veterans Day. “We protect the War Memorial, which stands for all of the Notre Dame graduates who have died in World War II, Korea and Vietnam,” Thomas said. “We pay tribute to the sacrifice they gave. “Ultimately, that’s the ideal service we try to strive for. It may not necessarily mean giving our lives in the defense of the country, but they set a great example of how we should be living our lives.” Thomas said South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg will address ROTC students and staff members at a public ceremony Monday evening in the Carey Auditorium of the Hesburgh Library. “[Mayor Buttigieg] is in the reserves right now, and he’s actually going to be going overseas in February with the Navy,” Thomas said. “It’ll be really interesting to hear his perspective, especially in his pre-deployment work up.” Thomas said the ROTC branches will participate together in Veterans Day activities, including a special appearance at the women’s basketball game Monday night. “We try to make it a tri-military celebration,” Thomas said. “During the women’s basketball game, we’ll be doing a flag unfurling that’s tri-military.” Chris Lillie, senior cadet and battalion commander for Army ROTC, said the rifle drill team would also make its first presentation in several years at the basketball game. “It’s actually the first time in at least five or six years that we’ve had a drill team performance, so we’re kind of excited that we’re getting that going,” Lillie said. Thomas said Veterans Day unites the ROTC branches beyond community-event planning. He said recognizing the service and sacrifice of all military men and women was the main lesson for midshipmen and cadets in training. “We can learn from every service of the people who went before us, so it’s important to not just recognize Navy veterans or Army veterans, but celebrate their lives together,” Thomas said. Lillie said the tri-military events reflect the shared commitment of the military divisions to protecting the United States. “[The ROTC branches] don’t represent different things,” he said. “They’re all focused on different things, so seeing them come together shows that it’s one team, one fight.” Maggie Armstrong, senior cadet and a squadron commander for Air Force ROTC, said her family’s military history made her learn and appreciate the significance of all veterans from a young age. “It was a family holiday, and I never really understood why until my dad explained to me when I was about 12 that he had lost his entire crew in a plane crash,” Armstrong said. “That day was about remembering those people and the ones who’d gone before us to make our country free.”To me, Veterans Day is an opportunity to reflect and remember the brothers and sisters in arms who’ve gone before us. Whether they are retired or out of service or reserves or killed in action, it’s an opportunity to remember what this country stands for and that there are people willing to fight for it.” Lillie said the same spirit extends to students at Notre Dame, even those who have no connections to ROTC or to the military in general. “With the big ‘God, Country, Notre Dame’ mantra that we have on campus, you’d be hard-pressed to find someone on campus that isn’t big on service, and that includes service to country,” Lillie said. “Whether or not you’re actually directly involved in the military, Veterans Day is a big day for everyone because you can go out and support the principles that you as an American believe in and that the people that are fighting for America are representing directly.” Evans said Veterans Day also reminds civilians of the ongoing sacrifices that military men and women must make. “What I’m afraid of is with the nearly 3,000 KIA [killed in action] and I think somewhere near 8,000 wounded soldiers, that the general populace will start to forget the sacrifice and service that these men and women have made,” Evans said. “Veterans Day is a day a year to remind everybody … [of] what they’ve had to do – leave their homes, leave their families, to bring freedom to a group of people and protect our shores from future attacks.” Evans said members of the Notre Dame and South Bend communities frequently approach him when he wears his uniform to thank him for his service. He said Veterans Day would be a chance for civilians to continue supporting the armed forces. “It gives them an opportunity to be a part of something larger than campus,” he said. Contact Lesley Stevenson at lsteven1@nd.edulast_img read more

Keep koi safe

first_imgBy Faith PeppersUniversity of GeorgiaHerons can gobble up fish from backyard ponds almost anywhere, any time.The problem is at its peak in spring and early summer, when the herons feed their young, says David Pool, a koi expert with Tetra Pond, a water-gardening-products company in Blacksburg, Va.Each day, Pool says, an adult heron needs about 13 ounces of food, or about three 6-inch koi or 10 2-inch goldfish. Herons take twice this amount when feeding their young.They’re generally shy birds, he says, and visit garden ponds when everything is quiet, usually early in the morning or in the evening.Once the herons have found an easy source of food, such as colorful fish in a shallow pond, they’ll return until they’ve taken most of the fish.To keep feathered fish burglars out of your koi pond, Pool offers these tips:Netting. Suspending a net 6 to 12 inches above the pond surface will prevent the heron from attacking your fish. Make sure the net is taut and can’t fall into the pond if the heron tries to land on it and spear the fish through it. This may not be the best-looking solution. But it’s by far the most effective.Perimeter Wire. Herons don’t normally land directly in the pond, as they will scare the fish. Instead, they land in the garden and stalk toward the water. Suspend strong fishing line 12 to 18 inches above the ground around the pond to stop the heron from reaching its destination. Put the fishing line 6 to 12 inches back from the pond to prevent the heron leaning over the barrier to catch the fish.Heron Scarers. A number of commercial scarers work in different ways. Some use a trip wire and produce a loud noise and, in some cases, a visual deterrent to scare the heron away. Some use sound inaudible to human ears. Others detect the heron with infrared light and scare it away by spraying a high-pressure jet of water. Remember, these can also be activated by guests visiting your yard.Plastic Herons. These are popular. Their success is based on the principle that herons are territorial and won’t feed close to another heron. Unfortunately, this isn’t completely effective anytime, especially in late winter and early spring when herons search for a mate. Then it may actually attract herons to your pond.Pond Design. When designing your pond, it’s possible to make life tough for herons. Dense growths of tall plants or shrubs around the pond will limit their access to the water. Making the pond side steep and the water 8 to 12 inches below the edge of the pond will also help, because the heron won’t be able to reach the fish.If you do lose some fish, don’t resort to harming or killing the herons. They’re protected species.last_img read more

Payne prevails for fifth IMCA Duel In The Desert crown

first_imgJeremy Payne won the Duel In The Desert main event for Xtreme Motor Sports IMCA Modifieds for the fifth time Saturday night. The Las Vegas Motor Speedway victory paid $7,777. (Photo by Tom Macht, LAS VEGAS, Nev. (Nov. 12) ­– Jeremy Payne extended his Duel In The Desert record to five career championships Saturday at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.Payne completed his charge from 10th starting to the lead just before midway in the 40-lap main event for Xtreme Motor Sports IMCA Modifieds on the half-mile Dirt Track, then ran away from a succession of challengers for the $7,777 payday.The new Fast Shafts All-Star Invitational ballot qualifier was chased across the stripe by Tim Ward, Johnny Saathoff, Johnny Scott and Peyton Taylor.Ward had started 12th and Saathoff 13th, while Scott came out of a last-chance race and made the top four all the way from 27th starting.Defending race winner and pole starter Lucas Schott was the early leader, with Ricky Thornton Jr. and Bobby Hogge IV right behind. Thornton used the low line to take the front spot away on lap 11, then got together with Hogge during a three-wide battle to stay in the lead.Hogge exited with a flat tire, Thornton was sent pitside for questionable driving and Schott got the lead back, with Payne restarting second.Quick to challenge, Payne peaked inside Schott while Jordan Grabouski loomed in third. A bobble by Schott in the first set of turns proved to be the lap 19 opportunity Payne was looking for and he was first when the next circuit was scored.Grabouski also caught Schott and was reeling in Payne before being sidelined with a broken front end. Ward was a couple car lengths off the pace before a lap 31 caution. Payne pulled away from that point, winning by a full straightaway.His first four Duel In The Desert crowns came in 2005, 2006, 2012 and 2013.A caution with five trips around the track left in the Karl Chevrolet Northern SportMod main event opened the door for Shawn Harker.Harker had started the 25-lapper from the pole but lost the lead from outside row one starter and fellow qualifying feature winner Curtis Van Der Wal on lap three.Van Der Wal got some distance on Harker before back-to-back cautions on lap seven. The race stayed green until lap 20, and both Harker and Doug Smith slipped underneath Van Der Wal on the ensuing restart.While he was able to catch Smith for second on the next circuit, Van Der Wal couldn’t get closer than 10 car lengths behind Harker in the $1,777 to win event.Smith, Robert Elliott and Michael Johnson completed the top five.Checkers flew for Chaz Baca, in the 10-lap Young Guns feature for Modified drivers 19 and un­der.Baca and Ethan Dotson passed Kelsie Foley following an early restart. Baca had a half a straighta­way advantage over Dotson before a lap seven caution.He held off Dotson to get the win while Foley raced her way back to third.Bill Brack checked out on the rest of the field from the get-go in winning the 10-lap Legends fea­ture for Modified drivers ages 55 and over.Christy Barnett motored from the eighth row starting to finish a distant second. Kevin Wright was third.More than 250 drivers from 22 states and three Canadian provinces competed in the Nov. 9-12 Duel, making the 19th annual special the biggest IMCA sanctioned event in the Larry Shaw Rac­e Cars Western Region again this year.ResultsModified feature ­– 1. Jeremy Payne, Springfield, Mo.; 2. Tim Ward, Chandler, Ariz.; 3. Johnny Saathoff, Beatrice, Neb.; 4. Johnny Scott, Cameron, Mo.; 5. Peyton Taylor, Batesville, Ark.; 6. Rob Sanders, Bakersfield, Calif.; 7. Lucas Schott, Chatfield, Minn.; 8. Dominic Ursetta, Arvada, Colo.; 9. Todd Shute, Des Moines, Iowa; 10. Josh Most, Red Oak, Iowa; 11. Jason Noll, Peoria, Ariz.; 12. Jason Beaulieu, Campbell River, B.C.; 13. Alex Stanford, Chowchilla, Calif.; 14. Eddie Belec, Arvada, Colo.; 15. Brad Pounds, Bakersfield, Calif.; 16. Ryan McDaniel, Olivehurst, Calif.; 17. Kyle Brown, Madrid, Iowa; 18. Jason Wolla, Ray, N.D.; 19. John Hansen, Brush, Colo.; 20. Jordan Grabouski, Beatrice, Neb.; 21. Stormy Scott, Cameron, Mo.; 22. Bobby Hogge IV, Salinas, Ca­lif.; 23. Ricky Thornton Jr., Chandler, Ariz.; 24. Terry Phillips, Springfield, Mo.; 25. Ricky Al­varado, Grand Junction, Colo.; 26. Jesse Sobbing, Malvern, Iowa; 27. Chris Abelson, Sioux City, Iowa; 28. Lance Mari, Imperial, Calif.Young Guns feature – 1. Chaz Baca, Mesa, Ariz.; 2. Ethan Dotson, Bakersfield, Calif.; 3. Kelsie Foley, Tucson, Ariz.; 4. John Parmeley, Phoenix, Ariz.; 5. Kendra Vollmer, Idaho Falls, Idaho; 6. Bubba Stafford Jr., New River, Ariz.; 7. Braxton Yeager, Green River, Wyo.; 8. Sting Ray Robb, Payette, Idaho; 9. Brylon Holder, Bakersfield, Calif.; 10. Chase Rudolf, Norwalk, Iowa; 11. D.J. Shannon, Merced, Calif.; 12. Tanner Black, Albert, Kan.; 13. Bricen James, Albany, Ore.Legends feature – 1. Bill Brack, Mead, Colo.; 2. Christy Barnett, El Paso, Texas; 3. Kevin Wright, Rock Springs, Wyo.; 4, Lawrence O’Connor, Port Hardy, B.C.; 5. Roger Bonneville, Cal­gary, Alb.; 6. Chris Clark, Jackson, Wy.; 7. Steve Simpson, Kingman, Ariz.; 8. Terry DeCarlo, Mar­tinez, Calif.; 9. Steve Streeter, Madera, Calif.; 10. Bill Lundock, Wiggins, Colo.; 11. Rex Mer­ritt, Billings, Mo.; 12. Steve Noland, Terra Bella, Calif.; 13. Mitch Machado, Rohnert Park, Calif.; 14. John Pierce, San Jose, Calif.; 15. Randy McDaniel, Olivehurst, Calif.; 16. Pichael paul Jr., Petaluma, Calif.Northern SportMod feature ­– 1. Shawn Harker, Nebraska City, Neb.; 2. Curtis Van Der Wal, Oskaloosa, Iowa; 3. Doug Smith, Lanesboro, Iowa; 4. Robert Elliott, Clinton, Okla.; 5. Michael Johnson, Bakersfield, Calif.; 6. Lee Jensen, Bakersfield, Calif.; 7. Robbie Conway, Westhope, N.D.; 8. Chris McKellar, Bakersfield, Calif.; 9. Fred Ryland, Brentwood, Calif.; 10. Rick Diaz, Los Banos, Calif.; 11. Ron Tex Jr., Papillion, Neb.; 12. Jason George, Laveen, Ariz.; 13. Brylon Holder, Bakersfield, Calif.; 14. Nick Spainhoward, Bakersfield, Calif.; 15. Arie Schouten, Blair, Neb.; 16. Brian Cooper, Yuba City, Calif.; 17. Matt Lewis, Bakersfield, Calif.; 18. Jordan Hagar, Bakersfield, Calif.; 19. Todd Cooper, Yuba City, Calif.; 20. Shawn Pudwill, Piedmont, S.D.; 21. Mark Abouzeid, Durham, Calif.; 22. J.R. Herrera, Price, Utah; 23. Chris Toth, Holtville, Calif.; 24. Matthew Hagio, Prunedale, Calif.last_img read more