For Medal of Honor winner Hudner, Army-Navy coin toss continues history

Discussion in 'Academy/Military News' started by Luigi59, Dec 10, 2010.

  1. Luigi59

    Luigi59 Banned

    Apr 1, 2007
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    For Medal of Honor winner Hudner, Army-Navy coin toss continues history

    Fri, Dec. 10, 2010
    By Frank Fitzpatrick
    Inquirer Staff Writer

    When retired Navy aviator Thomas J. Hudner Jr. walks toward midfield at Lincoln Financial Field Saturday afternoon for the coin toss to start the 111th Army-Navy game, the 2010 Navy cocaptains accompanying him will both be African Americans.

    Wyatt Middleton and Ricky Dobbs will make a fitting honor guard for Hudner, an 86-year-old Medal of Honor recipient whose remarkable life has intersected on at least two historic occasions with black pioneers of the U.S. Navy.

    In 1945, at the start of Hudner's final year there, Wesley Brown arrived at Annapolis. Four years later, Brown became the first African American to graduate from the Naval Academy.

    Then, on a snowy and bloody afternoon in 1950, despite fierce enemy fire and 30-below temperatures, Hudner somehow landed his plane on a tiny patch of Korean mountainside in an effort to save a downed pilot, Jesse Brown of Hattiesburg, Miss., the Navy's first black aviator.

    "I wasn't going to leave him there," said Hudner of that day. "What I had to do was clear."

    Sixty-five years after Hudner made his first visit to Philadelphia for the 1945 Army-Navy game (the wartime games had been played on the service academies' campuses and in Baltimore), he will return to renew old friendships and, along with five other Medal of Honor recipients, participate in the pregame ceremony.

    "I guess the boys need some advice from me," Hudner joked Thursday before traveling here from his Massachusetts home.

    Philadelphia and the world are different places. So is the Naval Academy, where today 22 percent of the brigade of midshipmen is African American.

    But the game-day scene in South Philadelphia that Hudner, the only living Naval Academy grad with a Medal of Honor, will experience hasn't changed much since he sat in Municipal Stadium's stands in 1945 watching his No. 2-ranked Midshipmen lose "the Game of the Century" to Glenn Davis, Doc Blanchard, and No. 1 Army.

    Read the entire story HERE
  2. DevilDog

    DevilDog Member

    Aug 25, 2008
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    What a great man.
  3. bruno

    bruno Retired Staff Member

    Feb 2, 2008
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    I salute Mr Hudner as well as the other MOH recipients at the game. They are the real heroes of our country and their deeds are almost unbelievable to me when I read about them.
    I also hope that they get the chance to see Army break its losing streak against Navy today!! Beat Navy:thumb:
  4. kpforson

    kpforson Parent

    Jan 12, 2009
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    A great book on Hudner, Brown and Naval Aviation during Korea is Such Men as These written by David Sears

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