Donate class ring back to USNA?

Discussion in 'Naval Academy - USNA' started by educ8, Mar 4, 2014.

  1. educ8

    educ8 Member

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    We have a son at USMAPS who will be entering USMA class of 2018 and a daughter who is still in the running for USNA, USAFA, USMA and was offered an appointment to USCGAS for 2018. As I get up to speed on "all things Academy" I came across a great tradition at USMA of donating class rings of deceased graduates to be melted down to become part of new rings...further connecting the past, present and future of the Long Grey Line.

    I think this is such a cool and appropriate thing to do with the ring that I was wondering if USNA has the same tradition? I looked and all I could find was this: https://www.usna.com/Page.aspx?pid=623
    But it is not quite the same thing...this is to display the ring, not to have it become part of new rings.

    My Uncle, a USNA grad of 1958 (think Admiral Poindexter and John McCain) who became a Major in the USMC and had three combat tours in Vietnam recently died and I now have his class ring and sabre. He wore his ring every day, including the day he died and it seems a shame to have it sitting in a safe deposit box.

    They (the ring and sabre) are very valuable sentimentally to us but as we become familiar with the Academy and the pride, tradition and the connection of past to the future, we would really like to donate it to that cause.

    Do any of you have any insight into such a thing?
     
    Last edited: Mar 4, 2014
  2. usna1985

    usna1985 USNA Alumnus

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    There is a current "Link in the Chain" program between classes 50 years apart (e.g., 1964 and 2014). Grads from the senior class have the opportunity to turn in their rings to be melted down and have that gold used to help create the rings for the junior class. To my knowledge, that program has existed for only a few years.

    There may be a similar program for deceased grads in general, but I'm not aware of it. Relatives of deceased grads may donate rings to USNA for display -- typically if USNA does not already have one or more from that class.
     
  3. AF6872

    AF6872 Member

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    "Link In The Chain" at USNA is correct. Fifty years and they donate rings for melding in the current graduate class rings. Great tradition and my DD, class of 2011, wears her's proudly. I would keep the ring and the sabre since 2008 has passed. You could contact the Naval Museum or the USMC Museum at Quantico (great place by the way) for more information.
     
  4. educ8

    educ8 Member

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    Thanks for the replies. We don't mind keeping them, but it just seemed like an appropriate and meaningful thing to do. I'll keep looking! Maybe someday a grandchild of mine could donate it to the class of 2058!
     
  5. Shawn

    Shawn Member

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    This is correct. This year the ring-melting ceremony is on April 15 in Smoke Hall. I think the Class of 1966 is donating 3 or 4 rings to be melted down.
     
  6. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator

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    I'd be thinking of a way to turn it into something to give to my own kids, especially as they both will (hopefully) commission as officers. Since it was the ring of a family member it might mean more as a "link in a chain" to them. Of course you know best. If they never knew your uncle (it happens these days) perhaps it would have no sentimental value for them. Of course a jeweler might cost you a few bucks.
     
  7. educ8

    educ8 Member

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    Good thought! It is a pretty healthy chunk of gold and is big enough to be made into several small items. That hadn't occurred to me, but it could be very meaningful and appropriate.

    Both of our older kids knew him. He was a bit of a salty character, very USMC and manly...in a "Hemingway" kind of way...lots of great stories, some of them tragic... Actually, he was some of the inspiration for our oldest to become an officer and attend an Academy.

    There is a third child (now a HS freshman) who may follow in his older sibling's foot steps, so I'd have to wait a few years to see if it should be made into two items, or three. Right now, he is feeling like he can't possibly live up to his two "perfect" siblings...but that is another story.
     
  8. 1964BGO

    1964BGO Member

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    With regards to the sword, several members of NA'63 offered their swords to members of NA'13, some with the proviso that the sword would be offered to members of NA 2063 and so on. I think there is promise in this practice, especially since it further cements the bonds between the classes.
     
  9. USMAROTCFamily

    USMAROTCFamily Member

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    You could melt them down into gold bars for commissioning!
     
  10. AF6872

    AF6872 Member

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    Butter Bars for commissioning is a great Idea. I think any jeweler could do it if you give them something to make a mold. I am currently working with a jeweler to make a set of gold wings for my future son in law from butter gold purchased forty years ago in Thailand (22kt). DD thinks it will be the wrong color for dress uniform since it is too gold color.:shake: I think it would really shine. Make sure you get a good presentation case so they don't wear them every day. Have the jeweler use the stone for someone in the family. Save the sabre and have them use it during their senior photo.
     
  11. educ8

    educ8 Member

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    Thanks! That is a great idea. I just need to wait a few years to see where each of our three kids end up! The sabre may go over the mantle until then:rolleyes:
     
  12. Hurricane12

    Hurricane12 USNA 2012

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    Gold wings (as in made of gold) are good to go. I was sort of trying to hint to my parents that they'd be a good winging gift (knock on wood and all that)...until I looked at some prices online. NOPE.


    Sent using the Service Academy Forums® mobile app
     
  13. AF6872

    AF6872 Member

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    My current gold would save her a lot of money and it is a big chain.:thumb: Put the Sabre with the musket over the mantle.
     
  14. USMCGrunt

    USMCGrunt Member

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    educ8: Do you know if the "sabre" is a Marine Officer's Mameluke sword?

    The Naval Academy could possibly use it for a display - but they probably have many.

    Another thought would be a donation to a local JROTC, VA, NROTC unit or VFW hall. One of particular interest or simply a local one in your area? There are very distinguished sword mounts which could bear a brass plate with his name and details.
     
  15. educ8

    educ8 Member

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    USMCgrunt,

    I think so, I'm not sure if there are variants...It is a USMC (engraved on the blade), with beautiful copper and brass on the hilt. It is very similar to the images that I get if I google Marine Officer's Mameluke sword, but the hilt is definitely brass and copper. It has an intricately braided leather thong as well (like the google results).
     
  16. AF6872

    AF6872 Member

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    Save the Sabre. All Marines at USNA must buy a Mameluke upon graduation with their uniform issue. It is different from the Naval Officer's sword. Like I said save the old one for their graduation photo.
     

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