Vote for our Legacy Gift by March 9, 2016.

Dear Classmates – (download or print this note)

I would like to invite you to join us in voting for our 40th Class Reunion Gift Project that will be presented to the Academy in 2017.

Over the past several months, our Class Gift Committee, led by Ken Hicks, in partnership with the AOG, has reviewed options from the Academy Priorities List, which contains all projects and programs that the Superintendent has selected and approved as the most pressing current needs of the Academy. From this list, the Committee has selected two options:

  • The Modern War Institute at West Point
  • West Point Center for Oral History

To vote for our 40th Reunion Gift, go to:  Descriptions of each of the options are detailed in the link.

Voting will close on March 9, 2016 and the winner will be announced shortly after.  This is our Legacy Gift to West Point. Both projects are spearheaded by classmates, Lance Betros and Vinnie Viola.  On behalf of the Class Gift Committee, thank you for your participation!

Esprit de Corps,

Rich Trotter
40th Reunion Fundraising Chair

Mac Warner for WV Secretary of State

[UPDATE – He won!]
The below letter was written by USMA ’56 grad BG John C. “Doc” Bahnsen and sent via email to the class of 1956.  It has since been shared with USMA ’77 and hopefully others.  There have been a few modifications since the original was sent, but this is what “Doc” wants everyone to know.
The conservative revolution in West Virginia is nearly complete.  When I moved to this state in the 1990s, West Virginia was a backwater of depression-era and New Deal thinking.  The entire Congressional delegation of two senators and three congressmen were democrats who voted nothing but the liberal party line.   Worn-out socialist and labor union politicos were running amok and the state was being run into the ground.  In the year 2000 — with Al Gore pushing his global-warming, anti-fossil fuel, big government-must-solve-everything agenda — we got the state to vote for George Bush.  This was the first time a first-term Republican candidate for President had won the State since Herbert Hoover did it in 1928; it was the start of the conservative revolution in WV.  West Virginia has now voted for the Republican nominee for President in every election since 2000, and now, conservative republicans hold four of those five seats in Congress.  
By 2014, both houses of the West Virginia Legislature switched from liberal democrat control to conservative republican majorities.  We’re on the cusp of the objective, and we now have a chance to consolidate the win, finish the job, and save West Virginia.  What we need to do is get rid of the one key person in the one key position who can stop the will of the people…we need to elect a conservative Secretary of State.  You see, the Secretary of State runs all elections in West Virginia.  For decades, elections and voter rolls have been purposely mismanaged and grossly unsupervised so that union-backed officials could prevail in rigged local elections.  Entire counties and swaths of the State have been run as corrupt enterprises by a few local, labor-backed henchmen and thugs.  With fair elections whereby our conservative-leaning people can have a government that genuinely represents them, this State will prosper.  We are almost there, and this year is the time to push through the objective.
We need a Secretary of State who will clean elections up statewide, and this year we’ve got the candidate to do it.  Mac Warner is West Point Class of 1977.  I’ve known Mac and his family for three decades now, and he’s as solid as West Point granite.  His father served in Patton’s Third Army, and he has three brothers who are Grads from ’73, ’78 and ’89.  
Mac was on the Honor Committee that cleaned up the mess at our school in the big cheating scandal of 1976-1977.  Mac started his career as an artilleryman and became one of our great JAG lawyers — an expert in international law.  In the 1980s and 1990s, Mac helped clean up dysfunctional governments and militaries in South America, Central America, Eastern Europe, and Southwest Asia.  He often helped countries to re-write their constitutions, live up to the Geneva convention, hold fair elections, respect human rights, and embrace the Rule of Law. 
From the Army War College Staff, Mac retired in 2000 and that is when he really went to work.  He and his lovely Army wife, Debbie, sent three of their four children to graduate from West Point:  Steven ’08, Lisa ’12, and Scott ’15.  His other daughter, Krista, is an Army Reserve Captain in Alaska, and is married to a West Point ’08 graduate.  Steven and Lisa both completed combat tours in Afghanistan where Steven received a Bronze Star and a Purple Heart.  Lisa is married to a ’12 West Point Grad, an Infantry Officer now going thru SF School at FT Bragg.  Scott is headed off to the 173d in Vicenza this year.  I got to know Mac and all his rock-solid children extremely well over the last 10 years as he helped me oversee the conservative youth camp I ran every summer in the hills of West Virginia.   If life were a Texas Hold ’em game, Mac is “ALL IN” every day — he and his family should be the on the poster for selfless service to the US Army; there should be a special monument to him somewhere at West Point.
But that is not all.  Mac just spent the last five years in Afghanistan on a State Department contract to build a legal system in that rugged war-torn country.  He ran the largest Organizational Capacity Building Rule of Law program in the world.  If there is one person with the wherewithal, experience, and background to stare down the corruption that has riddled this region of Appalachia for decades, lock up the thugs, and ensure we have fair elections, it is our brother from the Long Gray Line, Mac Warner.  
I want you to open your checkbooks and help elect Mac as WV Secretary of State.  Let’s grip hands and help this great servant go to work in West Virginia and fix things before we all fade off to Fiddler’s Green.  Please join me and send all the help you can up to the $1000 limit to: 
Mac Warner for Secretary of State
PO Box 18154
Morgantown, WV  26507
If you prefer to give on-line, find the “DONATE” button at
[Link expired]
Thank you for helping us out.
John C. “Doc” Bahnsen,  USMA ’56
Brigadier General, US Army (Ret)
USMA Distinguished Graduate 2016


Fight fiercely, 

Save the dates for our 40th reunion

We’re happy to announce the dates of the 40th reunion of the best looking class in the history of the corps!

October 5 – 8, 2017

Mark these dates on your desk calendars, on your smart phones, tablets, computers, and/or your cloud-based calendars.  You won’t want to miss this reunion.  We’re in the planning stages now and details on location, accommodations, events and more will be shared as soon as they are known.

Original company class reps will be reaching out via email and/or cell in the next few weeks to touch base and update personal info.


Flame on to the 40th!

Greetings Fellas!  It’s time to prep for the 40th!  Dates will be determined once the 2017 football schedule is announced.  Will be in touch shortly.  Esprit de Corps and Flame On!



Hello USMA class of 1977

Welcome to the new and improved Class of 1977 website. We have big plans, and you can help.

If you have stumbled across this site, please realize this is a prototype currently under development.  This will hopefully be replacing the old/ancient site shortly.  In the meantime, don’t believe everything you read here, and please don’t tell others about it just yet.

Yes, what you see above is a picture of us on R-day, 2 July 1973. The photo was provided by Terry Stewart.

April 2021 – More to The Point

[If you are reading this, this is a draft that is not ready for public consumption.  It will hopefully be finalized and published soon.  Draft date: 6 Jun 2021]


to the first issue of our unofficial/unauthorized newsletter! Its purpose is to reach out, connect, support, and celebrate with classmates, families, and friends of the West Point Class of 1977.

We want to make this newsletter easily understandable from the “Star Men” to the ‘Ejection Section”, in a format more like People Magazine than Pravda.  We all lead busy, chaotic lives, so hopefully these newsletters will be a simple, useful “poop sheet” for those to catch up & pass along. So, here goes, . . . take boards!NOTE: To prevent spammers from harvesting accounts to spam, this newsletter does not contain email addresses. If you were a member of USMA 1977 at any point in time, you should have received an email copy of this letter in April 2021 which does cite the applicable email addresses. If you did not receive this via email, please contact your company coordinator (see below).

Current Situation

Our Class Leaders have been busy planning for our 45th reunion (Football weekend, Oct 2022). To this end, we have revised our constitution & bylaws.

A Band of Brothers (BoB) committee has been formed to promote camaraderie & “encourage recognition of class members”.  Click here for the latest SOP. The committee is headed by Lance Betros, Andy Chmar, & with regimental reps (Tom von Kaenel-1st Reg, Bruce Cogossi-2nd Reg, Kevin Benson-3rd Reg, John Shephard-4th Reg).

What Should I Do?

In a phrase, we ask that you consider doing what you can do to promote camaraderie & “encourage recognition of Class members”. It will be different for each member of the class of ’77.  Here are a couple of suggestions.

1.  Keep in touch with your company coordinator:

    • A1 – Bob Bankey/ Mike Nicholas
    • B1 – Pat Linehan/ Tom von Kaenel
    • C1 – Joe Sullivan
    • D1 – Mike Johnson
    • E1 – Steve Morrow
    • F1 – Dale Bodman
    • G1 – Tom Watson
    • H1 – Pete Kingman
    • I1 – Crannie Butler
    • A2 – Kevin Clement
    • B2 – Ken Hicks/ Bill Ry
    • C2 – George Mitroka/Ron Porter
    • D2 – Jim Vaughn
    • E2 – Bruce Cogossi
    • F2 – Barry Bomier
    • G2 – Tim Flanagan
    • H2 – David Anselmi
    • I2 – Jimmy McFadden
    • A3 – Pete Palmer
    • B3 – Kevin Benson
    • C3 – Mike Church
    • D3 – Rand Ballard
    • E3 – Len Shartzer
    • F3 – Greg Gorzelnik
    • G3 – Dan Fuller
    • H3 – Craig Schwegman
    • I3 – Stan Warrick
    • A4 – Geoff Clark
    • B4 – Gene Nosco
    • C4 – Steve Collier
    • D4 – Ray Bosse
    • E4 – Jerry Dittman
    • F4 – Richard Anderson
    • G4 – Lance Betros
    • H4 – Bruce Frasier/Andy Chmar/John Shephard
    • I4 – Bill Woodson

2.  Find missing classmates and link them up with the appropriate company coordinator.

3.  Reach out to former classmates to invite them to become an associate member of AOG. Click here to learn how.

Ladies of the Class

We are actively soliciting support from spouses/ partners/ girlfriends of our classmates to help with the planning activities leading up to our 45th. The next meeting of lady reps from each company is 24 April. Email Pam Warrick or Diana McMaster for more info.

1977 Class Gift 

Now is the time for us to consider our class gift (to be given at our 50–year Reunion).
Click here for the memo on developing class gift ideas. The key points:
– The gift should resonate in a way that we can see the connection to an idea or theme.
– The gift should link to one of the Supe’s strategic priorities.
– The cost of the gift aligns with classmates’ potential to give (roughly $800K – $1.3M)
– One or more classmates must commit to doing the required legwork.


We currently have 56 deceased classmates who need a memorial article.  Click here to read the relevant email from Keesy Goerbetus and for the list of deceased classmates
The goal is to identify someone to write each memorial article by Fri, 26 Mar 21, with the goal to complete all by Feb 22.

Comments?  Email Rich Trotter.

Esprit de Corps