Class of 1991

In Memoriam

A Tribute to our 45 Fallen Classmates


Those remembered in Memorial Hall

Please visit the USNA Virtual Memorial Hall.


The Memorial Page is maintained by classmates:
Christian Wortman
John McVay
Walt Finney
Art Glasgow


John Jacob Lapina

Deceased: 10/9/2023

USNA Company: 28

John Jacob Lapina Jr. 54, of Louisville, KY, passed away Monday, Oct. 9, 2023. John was the first child born to Rose and John Lapina Sr. in Jeannette, PA, March 22, 1969.

After graduating as Valedictorian of his class at Jeannette Senior High School, he attended the United States Naval Academy for engineering in Annapolis, Md. Following his graduation from USNA in 1991, he proudly served his country as a lieutenant in the Navy for eight years. During that time, he married his high school sweetheart, Christine, and moved to Chesapeake, Va., where they had their son, Matthew. He obtained his master's degree in engineering management from Old Dominion University in 1998. When John left the Navy for civilian life in 1999, he and his family moved to Louisville, where he accepted a position as an engineer in the appliance division for General Electric. Their daughter, Erica, was then born in 2004.

John continued his career with GE for nearly 24 years, where he most recently was the engineering director-cross platform for GE Appliances, a Haier Company. In his free time, John enjoyed playing golf. He also liked watching Formula 1 car racing and football. He particularly loved it when Navy beat Army.

John is a survived by his loving wife of nearly 30 years, Christine; son, Matthew (Kieli); daughter, Erica; parents, John and Rose Lapina, of Irwin; sister, Jennifer Reece (Chris), of Streetsboro, Ohio; brother, Anthony Lapina (Amanda), of Valencia, Pa.; parents-in-law, Robert and Susan Stoltz, of Jeannette; sister-in-law, Lauren Berkshire (Scott), of Canonsburg; and brother-in-law, Stephen Stoltz (Michelle), of Cranberry. He was also a loving uncle to many nieces and nephews.

In lieu of flowers, the family asks that you make a donation to donate to Volunteers of America, Kentucky and USA Cares, Kentucky.

Jason Christopher Davis

Deceased: 9/1/2023

USNA Company: 13

Lake Worth FL - After valiantly fighting for over two years, on Friday, Sept. 1, 2023, Jason Christopher Davis, of Lake Worth, Fla., formerly of Champaign, lost his battle with cancer at the age of 54, surrounded by his loving family. 

He is survived by his wife of 29 years, Katie (Madix) Davis; two children, Ryan, 23, of Tallahassee, Fla., and Matthew, 21, of Orlando, Fla.; his father, Ronald Davis and his wife, Elizabeth (Johnson) Davis; his mother-in-law, Colleen (Moriarty) Madix (Joseph); his sister, Jennifer Billhymer (Andrew); and numerous brothers-in-law, sisters-in-law, nieces, nephews, great-neices and great-nephews. 

He was preceded in death by his loving mother, Carol (Hahn) Davis, who passed away in 1997.  

Jason was born January 18, 1969, in Champaign-Urbana. He graduated from Champaign Central High School in 1987 and went on to attend the United States Naval Academy, where he earned a Bachelor's of Science Degree (with merit) in Marine Engineering. Following his graduation from the Academy, and having completed numerous additional schools and qualifications, he proudly served as a nuclear submarine officer onboard USS PARCHE (SSN-683). He finished his Navy career through a shore-duty assignment in Washington, D.C., where he was able to earn a Master's Degree in Engineering Management from the Catholic University of America.

After leaving the Navy, Jason went on to lead a successful corporate career resulting in executive leadership positions in companies such as GE, Covance, Tyco, Johnson Controls, and AIG.

Class of 1991

LCDR Ross Bruce Cheairs III

Deceased: 7/4/2021

USNA Company: 8

Ross Bruce Cheairs, III (family name Trey) left this world far too soon on July 4, 2021, of a sudden heart attack. He was a beloved husband, father, son, brother, uncle, friend, and coach. On June 19, 1969, he was born at Meharry-Hubbard Hospital in Nashville, TN, to Ross Bruce Cheairs and Eleanor Patricia Banks Cheairs of Memphis, TN. The Cheairs family spent a few years in Buffalo, NY, where daughter Katherine Ann Cheairs was born before relocating to the metro Atlanta area in 1976. Ross demonstrated excellence in academics and athletics from an early age while a student at McLendon Elementary School in Decatur, GA. He was in the Discovery program for gifted and talented students. In addition, he participated in many extracurricular activities that included Swim Atlanta and the Atlanta Shell Club. His musical interests included guitar and violin, and he achieved purple belt status in karate. Ross attended Shamrock High School in DeKalb County, GA. He received many accolades and awards, including the National Junior Honor Society, The National Beta Club, and the Georgia Southern College Minority Junior Scholastic Award. Equally impressive was Ross's passion for team sports. He played varsity tennis and ran cross country track and field, where he regularly tethered a visually impaired student for practices and meets. After receiving admittance to several prestigious colleges and universities, Ross accepted an appointment to the United States Naval Academy in Annapolis, MD, where he majored in Engineering and graduated with the Class of 1991.

During his time at the Academy, Ross served as a Platoon Commander in the 8th Company and participated in various athletic pursuits, including lightweight football and basketball. He would go on to serve with distinction in the Navy, earning his gold wings as a Naval Aviator and qualifying as Aircraft Commander in the SH-60F Seahawk based out of Naval Air Station North Island in Coronado, CA. Throughout his Naval career, Ross served at various locations at sea and around the globe, including multiple Pacific deployments and as an Executive Officer of a forward-deployed unit in the Middle East. Ross was a member of the Navy Helicopter Squadron HS-8 from 1995-1998 and participated in 2 deployments onboard the USS Nimitz, including a 1997-1998 'Around the World' cruise beginning in San Diego, CA, ending in Norfolk, VA. Ross subsequently joined HS-10, where he served as a Fleet Replacement Squadron Instructor Pilot preparing new and returning pilots for their respective combat deployments. In total, Ross flew 1,700 hours, including 700 hours as Pilot in Command on over 500 sorties. These sorties consisted of operational and training missions such as Combat Search and Rescue, Night Vision Goggles, and aircraft carrier battle group operations. Ross left active duty in 2001 and continued to serve in the Navy Reserves until retiring as a Lieutenant Commander. Upon leaving active duty, Ross enrolled at the Anderson School of Management at UCLA and graduated with an MBA in 2003. After graduating from UCLA, Ross worked in real estate project management, financial analysis, and land acquisition in and around the greater Sacramento area for such companies as Morrison Homes, KB Home, Britannia Pacific Properties, and Richmond American Homes. Despite all his notable accomplishments, the thing he was most proud of was his family.

He met the love of life Elizabeth in 1999 while serving in the US Navy in San Diego. They married in the Summer of 2003 and started to build a family in Lincoln, Ca, where they have resided since. The center of Ross' world has always been family, and he and Elizabeth were proud parents of Alexandria (16), Brandon (14), and Anthony (11). Ross found joy in helping kids find their potential while coaching soccer, flag football, and basketball in the Lincoln community. He relished time with his family, taking trips, reading Star Wars books, was a loyal college football fan, and never missed an opportunity to cheer on the Atlanta Falcons and Braves. On the weekends, you would find him barbequing for his family and friends, hiking, watching sports and attending his children's pursuits. He loved most of all being a family man, building memories, traditions and the simple joy of raising a family. He leaves a legacy of leadership, a humble nature, loyalty, and acceptance for people for who they are.

Ross is survived by his beloved wife Elizabeth, daughter Alexandria, sons Brandon and Anthony, parents Eleanor and Ross Cheairs Jr, sister Katherine Cheairs, Aunt Sybil (Gerald) Chapman, Cousin Gerald Chapman, In-laws Linda and Joseph Tonda, Sister-in-law Jennifer (Joe) Rohlfes, nephew Jacob, nieces Jordan and Justine, Brother-in-law John Tonda, Brother-in-law Matthew Tonda, and cherished golden retriever Bella.

Class of 1991

CDR Robert 'Trey' Adams III, USN (RET)

Deceased: 2/21/2020

USNA Company: 15

Robert I. Adams III, USN (RET), of Surprise, Arizona died February 21, 2020. Also known as Trey, he was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania on September 21, 1967, to his parents, Robert I Adams Jr. and Gail L. Newruck (Walter G.).

He is survived by former spouse, Allison M. Adams, sons Robert I. Adams IV and Fletcher C. Adams, and loving partner Alison Manning.

Trey is also survived by brothers; Jeffrey C Adams (partner Erika Laspisa) and Bryan M. Newruck, and sister Shanon G. Newruck-Buler (Harry).

He will be missed by his nephews; Patrick, Ryan and Brendan Adams, and Lennon Buler; and niece Riley Clary.

Trey was a graduate of Boyertown area high school, Boyertown, Pennsylvania, and the U. S. Naval Academy Class of 1991. He received his MBA at USC, Los Angeles, California.

Prior to college, Trey was an exchange student in Finland with Rotary International. While there he learned several languages.

Trey’s call to service was inspired by his maternal grandparents, who both served in the Navy during WWII, and also by his mother, who continued the family tradition. During his 22 years of active duty, Trey served in Kuwait, London, and Afghanistan.

Trey’s passions were NASCAR, online gaming, Eagles football, paying it forward, and - most importantly - teaching his sons about duty, honor and respect. He also enjoyed singing with the Naval Academy Glee Club and his many performances on stage as a member of the Screen Actor’s Guild.

Trey will be missed by his many comrades, friends and all who knew and loved him.

Class of 1991

CDR John J. Zuhowski

Deceased: 10/13/2019

USNA Company: 16

Commander John J. Zuhowski, USN (Ret), of Gloucester, VA, went to His heavenly kingdom after a brief battle with cancer on 13 October 2019.

John was born in 1967 in Easton, MD, and grew up in Arnold, MD. He was a graduate of Mount Saint Joseph High School in Baltimore, MD, Marine Military Academy in Harlingen, TX, and Marion Military Academy in Marion, AL. In 1991, he graduated from the US Naval Academy with a commission as a Surface Warfare Officer.

John spent 21 years in the Navy and commanded two Navy warships, SHAMAL and TORTUGA. He obtained two master's degrees; one in Strategic Studies and National Security Affairs from the Naval War College and one in Public Administration from Troy State University. He retired in 2011 as a Commander.

Upon retirement, he worked as a government contractor with SAIC and Valkyrie Enterprises. 

He will be remembered for his love of fast cars, hunting, his culinary expertise of all things BBQ, garlic, and hot sauce, and his love of Country, family, and his four-footed friends.

He is survived by his wife of 27 years, Babs; daughter, Megan Elizabeth; sister, Susan Zuhowski; and mother, Eleanor Zuhowski. 

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in his memory to the USA Opera Theatre/Zuhowski Memorial Fund, Laidlaw Performing Arts Center, LPAC 7102, 5751 USA South Drive, Mobile, AL 36608.

Mrs. Michelle Louise Manick

Deceased: 10/13/2019

USNA Company:

Michelle, age 51, died surrounded by friends and family in Santa Rosa, CA with her husband Ken and her children Chris and Kevin at her side. She was born May 7, 1968, in Novato, CA to Valerie and Michael Manick. She is survived by her husband Ken Daxer, beloved sons Chris (17) and Kevin Daxer (15), Her sisters Julie Manick and Carolyn Manick; and many loving cousins, nieces, nephews, and amazing friends.

Michelle enjoyed being a member of the marching band at Moreau Catholic High School in Hayward class of 1986. She attended the Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland, and earned her B.S. in Computer Engineering from San Jose State University. Michelle proudly entered the computer industry. Her technical and communication skills propelled her career to roles in customer training and securing design wins for many of Altera’s most important FPGA customers.

After getting married in 1998, Michelle resided with her husband in Sunnyvale, CA. In 2001 they began their family and Michelle transitioned to the role of full-time mom with pride. Michelle absolutely loved being a mother and was very active in her community. Just some of her countless volunteer positions included room mom, Cub Scout leader, and Sunday school teacher. Michelle was a voracious reader and enjoyed sewing quilts for loved ones. She enjoyed nature through biking, hiking, sailing, skiing, scuba diving and in recent years wheelchair hikes.

Michelle endured a long battle with Multiple System Atrophy for over 10 years. She amazed us with her strength, cheered us with her smile, and inspired us with her love of life.

In lieu of flowers the family has requested any donations be given in Michelle’s name to one of / or divided amongst the following charities:

Class Status: Alumni

Class of 1991

Mr. Bryan M. Spano

Deceased: 8/9/2019

USNA Company: 18

Bryan M. Spano  (December 5, 1969 - August 9, 2019)

Bryan M. Spano died of cancer due to HPV 16 in Vienna, VA, on 09 August 2019 in the comfort of his home, surrounded by family, friends, and his priest. He was 49 years old.

A native of Weymouth, MA, Bryan graduated from Archbishop Williams High School in Braintree, MA, in 1987. Following high school graduation, he was appointed to the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, MD. Bryan was a physics major and graduated in May of 1991 as a member of the 18th company.

Following graduation, Bryan completed the Naval Nuclear Power School and Naval Submarine School before reporting to USS Whale (SSN-638), in Groton, CT. Shortly after he reported onboard, Whale departed on its final cruise before decommissioning. This deployment included scientific experiments, surfacing at the North Pole, and a circumnavigation of the globe. Bryan resigned from the Navy in June, 1996.

Throughout his life, Bryan loved spending time outdoors and shortly before being diagnosed with cancer completed the 165-mile Tahoe Rim Trail hike. Bryan regularly contributed financially to the Disabled American Veterans and Archbishop Williams High School.

He is survived by his wife of six years, the former Suzanne Ratelle of Edina, Minnesota; his mother, Karin Recupero; his father, Michael Spano; his sister, Christine Egan and family; and extended family.

Bryan will be inurned at a private ceremony at the Naval Academy Columbarium at a future date.

Class of 1991

Mr. Carl Aaron Bresko

Deceased: 4/26/2019

USNA Company: 25

Carl Aaron Bresko, 49 of Kingwood, TX, formerly of Peoria, died Friday, April 26, 2019 in San Diego, CA, after a 13-year battle with brain cancer.

He was born on November 15, 1969, to Michael and Carole (Sievert) Bresko at OSF in Peoria, IL. Surviving are his wife Deborah (Vidosic), and their three children Daniel, Matthew, and Julianne. His parents Mike and Carole, his sister Leslie (Doug) Peplowski, and their children Jake, Noelle, Anna, Ella and Ava Peplowski, and a brother Aaron (Traci) Bresko and their child Alyssa and numerous aunts, uncles and cousins. He was preceded in death by his grandparents Carl and Doris Bresko, Howard and Marcella Sievert and an Uncle Joe Bresko.

Carl was a scholar/ 3-sport athlete who attended Washington Grade School and Woodruff HS in Peoria. He attended and graduated from the US Naval Academy in Annapolis where he played football and baseball for the midshipmen. Carl served in the fleet for 5 years with the Navy, stationed in Charleston, SC (USS Mount Baker) and Corpus Christi, TX (USS Devastator) with two deployments to the Middle East.

Upon leaving the Navy, Carl worked a number of jobs, most notably with Pfizer Pharmaceuticals in Peoria and DaVita Dialysis in Kingwood, TX.

He loved his kids, family and the outdoors with a special passion for the ocean and saltwater fishing. Carl always said that he could see God most clearly in His creation!

Through all the years of treatment, he took up his cross and never once complained.

A memorial mass will be offered at St. Mary of Lourdes Church in Germantown Hills, IL at 10 a.m. on Wednesday, May 15th with Fr. Greg Jozefiak officiating. A brunch and celebration of life will follow immediately in the parish hall.

Carl's ashes will be buried at sea with full military honors off San Diego later this month. For details check with Featheringill Mortuary of San Diego online at:

Memorials can be made to the American Brain Tumor Association online at: or by calling 1-877-227-7487. We ask for your prayers for a cure so that no one else has to ever suffer through this terrible disease.

Published in Peoria Journal Star from May 3 to May 5, 2019.

Class of 1991

CDR John Bernard Quinlan

Deceased: 10/4/2018

USNA Company: 27

CDR John Bernard Quinlan, USN Ret., died peacefully at his home in Norfolk, VA, on Thursday, October 4, 2018. He was surrounded by his loving family and close friends after a courageous six-year battle with metastatic Melanoma. John grew up in Bowie, MD, was an Eagle Scout, a graduate of Severn School, and a 1991 graduate of the United States Naval Academy where he played lacrosse and ice hockey.

John also earned his MBA from The College of William & Mary in 2011, and enjoyed his post-Navy career as a Financial Advisor with Morgan Stanley Wealth Management in Virginia Beach.

In 2001, John married the love of his life, Mary Alice Jageman of Houston, TX. They have three wonderful boys: John Tucker 15, James Boyd 12, and Jacob Henry 11, of whom John was extremely proud and actively engaged in their school, sports, and other activities. He had numerous interests, but none more dear to him than spending time with his family. John was a faithful servant of our Lord Jesus Christ and attended Crossroads Church in Norfolk. He was a loving husband, father, son, brother, neighbor, coach and true friend. John is preceded in death by his father John “The Beach Master” Quinlan. Besides his devoted wife and three boys, John leaves his mother Natalie Quinlan of Ocean City, MD, and his sister Robin Holmes of Laurel, DE. He also leaves his natural father and stepmother Dr. James and Judy Maurer of Ponte Vedra Beach, FL, sisters Aimee Cannon of Detroit Lakes, MN; Jennifer and husband Tom Bailey of St. Augustine, FL; Sarah and husband Charles Seuntjens of Detroit Lakes, MN, along with numerous nieces, nephews and close friends.

Online condolences may be offered to the family through

Published in The Virginian Pilot on Oct. 10, 2018.

Arlington Cemetery Location

Mr. John Martinez Jr.

Deceased: 2/25/2018

USNA Company:

John Martinez Jr., age 49, of Bellflower, California, passed away on Sunday, February 25, 2018. John was born March 10, 1968, in Los Angeles, California to Armida Alcarez and John Martinez.

John is survived by his wife, Marisela Martinez, and his children Kaitlyn, Kyra, and Jakob.


  • John Martinez, Father
  • Armida Alcarez, Mother
  • Marisela Martinez, Wife
  • Kaitlyn Martinez, Daughter
  • Kyra Martinez, Daughter
  • Jakob Martinez, Son

Class Status: Alumni

Class of 1991

Mr. Robert Martinazzi II

Deceased: 2/4/2018

USNA Company: 28

Robert Martinazzi ll  (May 02, 1968 - February 04, 2018)

On February 4, 2018, Robert Martinazzi II, 49, of Severn, Maryland, went to his heavenly home while at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center. Bob was born on May 2,1968, at Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, to Madeline and Robert Martinazzi. Bob graduated from Bishop Carroll Catholic High School in Ebensburg, PA, and went on to graduate from the United States Naval Academy, Class of 1991, with a Bachelor of Science degree in Aerospace Engineering.

Bob served his country proudly in the United States Navy for nine years, achieving the rank of Lieutenant. During his early military career, Bob went on to earn two Master of Science degrees from the University of Maryland, one in Civil Engineering and the other in Environmental Engineering. Bob was privileged to work in facilities engineering and most recently as a Director of Procurement for the University of Maryland. Bob had a passion for Star Wars and loved sharing his joy of collecting and droid building with others. Bob belonged to the DC Star Wars Collectors Club and the R2D2 Washington DC Builder's Club. Due to his remarkable craftsmanship of his Star Wars life-size, animated droids he was invited to the White House to share his creation with the Gold Star Children (Children who had lost a parent in Military combat) and with President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle. Bob just recently was invited to share his R2D2 and his newly finished BB8 droid at the Washington, DC, executive premier of the latest Star Wars movie, "The Last Jedi." Bob generously shared his droids with many children at local hospitals, Muscular Dystrophy Association, schools, and libraries.

Bob was a Boy Scout leader, an active member of his church, and a devoted Pittsburgh Steeler and Penguin fan. Bob is survived by his devoted wife of 22 years, Allison Mary Martinazzi; his cherished children, Emily Martinazzi and Robert Martinazzi lII; of Severn, Maryland; his beloved Parents Madeline and Robert Martinazzi; his loving sisters, Maria (Jeffery) Lauer and Amy (William) Kanich; all of Nanty-Glo; his dear parents-in-law, Mary and Jack Gifford of Kendall Park, New Jersey; and many aunts, uncles, nephews, nieces, cousins, and close friends. Interment will be held at Maryland Veterans Cemetery in Crownsville. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions in Robert's name may be made to Bishop Carroll Catholic High School in Ebensburg, PA, or in the true fashion and spirit of Bob, take your family to the next Star Wars movie, buy some popcorn, and sit back and enjoy!

Published on February 7, 2018.

The Tribune-Democrat 

Mr. Jeremy M. Lehmann

Deceased: 1/27/2018

USNA Company:

Jeremy M. Lehmann, 50, of Niantic, passed away unexpectedly on Jan. 27, 2018. Mr. Lehmann was born on Nov. 14, 1967, in New London, to Howard "Tom" and Lois Lehmann. He is survived by his wife, Gabriella Georgescu. Calling hours will be held from 5 to 7 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 1, at Fulton-Theroux Funeral Home, 13 Lake Ave., Niantic. A funeral service will be held at 11 a.m. on Friday, Feb. 2, in the funeral home. Burial will follow in East Lyme Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to your local veterans association or local humane society.

Class Status: Alumni

Class of 1991

James Richard Sinley Jr.

Deceased: 12/25/2016

USNA Company: 2

James Richard Sinley, Jr. “Richard” was received into the loving arms of Jesus and welcomed home by his Heavenly Father on December 25th, 2016. He was born in Fort Collins, Colorado on March 3rd, 1967 to Jim and Lauretta Sinley.

He graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy in 1991 and commissioned into the United States Navy. He served in the U.S. Navy honorably for fourteen and a half years, earning the rank of Lieutenant.

Richard married Anusha on June 27th, 1999 in Bahrain. Having returned later that year to the U.S., they then resided in Fort Collins, Colorado to raise their family.

He was active with Naval Academy graduates, was a founding member of Grace Hill Church, enjoyed working on computers, and was always serving others.

Richard is survived by his loving wife, Anusha, parents Jim and Lauretta Sinley of Fort Collins, his son Ethan, daughters Sandami and Sithumi, his brother Jason Sinley, and numerous uncles, aunts, cousins, and friends.

Class of 1991

Carl David Flores

Deceased: 4/20/2015

USNA Company: 35

Carl (nicknamed “Carlo” by his family) and his twin brother “Charles” were born on March 28,1970 in Key West, FL. The twins were the youngest of 5 boys. Sadly, Carl’s twin brother preceded him in death as an infant. At an early age, Carl appeared ahead of his years. Many in the family recall his ability to read the newspaper at age 3. During these developmental years, he loved watching “Sesame Street” and “The Electric Company” on television – shedding additional insight into Carl’s advanced aptitude. While spending a year in Warren, MI with his aunts, Carl’s IQ was tested, and he was able to bypass kindergarten and go directly to first grade. So began Carl’s years as the ‘brainy’ one of the youngest of the Flores brothers.

In high school, Carl’s above-average intelligence was again acknowledged, as he was accepted into the Science and Technology program at Oxon Hill High School in Maryland. Not only was his intelligence challenged through this program, his passion for music advanced with his participation as a percussionist with the school’s symphonic band. During these years Carl was also active in the local Filipino community, participating in Filipino folk dancing and Broadway
review shows.

After applying to multiple universities and spending a summer at a program sponsored by United States Naval Academy (USNA) in Annapolis, MD, Carl was 1 of 1200 accepted (out of 5000 applicants) into the Naval Academy freshman class of 1987. While at the Academy, he joined the Glee Club, which toured all around the world. Following graduation from the Naval Academy, Carl was stationed at Long Beach, CA, from 1992 to 1994, and then later stationed in Coronado, CA from 1994 to 1996. Carl completed his commitment to the Navy, deciding to stay in the San Diego area, serving as a system analyst at several Navy technology contractor companies. Before leaving the Navy though, Carl began attending College Avenue Baptist Church. He was an active member, involved in many different areas of service (Deacon, a member of Sunday Morning Worship Team, Gospel Choir and various other behind-the-scenes roles), faithfully serving the congregation.

In addition to his church service, Carl loved live performance and singing jazz standards, enjoying an active calendar with the swing dance community both locally and nationally. He was a sought-after DJ and dance partner, chairing a number of regional and national events. Carl was a loyal friend, a willing helper, a strong hugger, a deep laugher. He was kind, caring, loveable, authentic, a good listener and a gentleman’s gentleman. He touched the lives of everyone he met. He was most of all, a faithful brother in Christ whose life exemplified the pursuit of the Greatest Commandment:
“Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength” Mark 12:30

He will be deeply missed.

Carl is survived by his father, Manuel and his wife, Estelita; his mother, Leticia; and his 3 brothers and their families: Ron, his wife, Gigi, their children: Miguel and Ysabel; Mark, his wife Claire, their children: Conrad, Gabrielle, Mercedez; and Kieth, his wife Sally, his children: Nicole, Liana and Melody.

Class of 1991

Kristen Tomford Waller

Deceased: 1/18/2014

USNA Company: 12

Kristen Tomford Waller. Daughter of Rick Tomford. Passed away the night of January 18th surrounded by family and friends following a brief, harrowing, and valiant battle with ovarian cancer. Born in Rockville Center, NY on July 23rd, 1969, she was raised in northern Virginia. It was in these years that she excelled as a gifted athlete and student. Kristen graduated from the United States Naval Academy as a member of the Class of 1991, where she captained the women's basketball team. Kristen served seven years in the US Navy attaining the rank of Lieutenant.

Following her military service, she went to work for Verizon and rose to the rank of executive director before her passing. Kristen lived life to the fullest. She traveled the world seeking adventure, whether it was sky diving, zip-lining, or bungee jumping. She ran several marathons in places as distant as Dublin and Alaska. Always looking for a challenge, she completed a Half Iron Man Triathlon in 2012. She loved to watch all sports especially the Midshipman of Navy. The Army-Navy football game was always a yearly highlight, where she was able to meet classmates from the Academy. She loved college wrestling and went to the NCAA Wrestling Championships with her father, uncles Rob and Ron, as well as her beloved cousin Bret nearly every March.

Kristen will be missed and mourned by many co-workers and friends, all of whom adored her. She leaves behind her father Rick Tomford and his wife Ruth of Avon, CT, her step-brother LT. Brian Lefler (currently serving on the USS New Mexico), her brother Scott Tomford of Brooklyn, NY, her sister Lauren Sanderson and her husband Austin and their daughter Kendall of Westminster, MA, and her sister Dana Tomford of Avon, CT. She also leaves behind her uncle Dr. Robert Tomford (wife Cathy Benedict), who provided her with expert medical guidance and encouragement throughout her illness, her uncle Ron Tomford (wife Nancy) and her cousins Bret, Megan and Michael. Her best friend, Melissa Magos of Oxnard, CA was by her side nursing, encouraging and comforting Kristen during her entire illness.

Kristen's family will be forever grateful for Melissa's faithfulness to Kristen in her time of need. Kristen also leaves behind her cherished boxer dog, Roxy, whom she admiringly rescued years ago. Kristen inspired everyone she knew to enjoy life, to be fair, work hard, and persevere even in the face of adversity. She was the rare breed of person that you will always remember, no matter how briefly you interacted with her. At Kristen's request, there will be no funeral or memorial services, and her ashes will be spread to Glacier Bay, Alaska and Queenstown, New Zealand by her father. Visit for online condolences. Published in The Hartford Courant on Jan. 22, 2014

Class of 1991

Robert Charles Taylor

Deceased: 12/26/2013

USNA Company: 17

Rob was born in CA in 1966, moved to Windsor in 1973, graduated from Windsor High School in 1984 then enlisted in the Marine Corps. He went to the Naval Academy, West Point, Army Airborne and Navy SCUBA diver, then, Naval Flight Officer's school. Following his winging, he selected F/A-18D\'s, did two deployments and became an Instructor and completed Top Gun (Advisory). He graduated from Annapolis in 1991 and became a Weapons Systems Officer. He logged 1500 jet hours, 500 of which were wartime hours. He flew in the Afghanistan War and was deployed twice in the Iraq War. He passed away in Mountain View, CA on December 26, 2013.

He is survived by his mother, Marcey (Taylor) Blanco of Loveland; his father, Bob Taylor of Littleton; his sister, Leslie Simpson of Conifer; his sister, Nicole Brunet of Pensacola, FL and his two children, Redmayne and Dagen of Milford, CT. Services will be at Ft. Logan Cemetery in Denver, CO on June 13 at Noon. Please sign the online guestbook at Cusimano Family Colonial Mortuary's website at

Published in Loveland Reporter-Herald on Jan. 26, 2014.

Class of 1991

Stephen Francis Murphy

Deceased: 11/4/2013

USNA Company: 19

Captain Steve Murphy, USN, died on 12 November 2013 on active duty following a more than two-year battle with cancer.  He was 44 years old.

“Murph” grew up in Catonsville, MD where he graduated from Catonsville High School before receiving his Congressional appointment to the Academy.  While at the Academy, he was a Trident Scholar and member of the Varsity Offshore Sailing Team.  A Political Science major, he graduated with distinction in the Class of 1991 as a member of 19th Company. 

A career Surface Warfare Officer, Steve’s afloat assignments included Navigator, First Lieutenant, and Electrical Officer in USS VALLEY FORGE (CG-50), Operations Officer in USS GONZALEZ (DDG-66), Operations Officer in Destroyer Squadron TWO EIGHT (CDS-28), Executive Officer in USS NORMANDY (CG-60), and Commanding Officer in USS MAHAN (DDG-72) homeported in Norfolk, VA.  Following his first tour afloat, Steve was selected as an Olmsted Scholar to Kyiv, Ukraine where he earned a Master’s Degree in International Relations from Taras Schevchenko State University.  Ashore, Steve served in a variety of demanding, high-visibility staff assignments including Deputy Executive Assistant to the Commander, Allied Joint Force Command Naples, Italy, Deputy Executive Assistant to the Vice Chief of Naval Operations, and Special Assistant to the Chief of Naval Operations.  Based on his superb performance throughout his career, Steve was selected for Major Command afloat.  In June 2013, while undergoing cancer treatment, he completed a Master’s Degree in National Security Strategy from the National War College and was awarded the Col. Richard Christie Marine Corps Association’s Award for Excellence in Writing.

Steve was an exceptional naval officer; however his greatest joy was family.  He is survived by his wife of 18 years, Carrie, his 12-year-old daughter Madeleine, whom he cherished; by his father Charles Murphy, mother Angela Murphy; and siblings Diane Warner, Mary Rutter, Charles Murphy, Jr., Elizabeth Flerlage, Paul Murphy, and John Murphy all of whom intensely supported Steve throughout this fight.

Steve was a man of great integrity, courage, humility, and deep faith.  He was known for his compassionate leadership style and easygoing demeanor that had a way of inspiring and lifting those around him.  An active member of his church and community, Steve also enjoyed cycling and triathlons.  A true Sailor, shipmate, and friend – he is sorely missed.

His memorial service with military honors was held at the Naval Academy Chapel on 13 December.  He will be interred at the Naval Academy Columbarium in a private ceremony.

Mr. Lawrence L Giangulio

Deceased: 7/20/2013

USNA Company:

Lawrence L. Giangulio, 44, formerly of Troy, Ohio, more recently of Oceanside, Calif., died Saturday, July 20, 2013, at his residence. He was born Nov. 11, 1968, in Springfield, Ohio, to Larry M. and Jane P. (Quine) Giangulio. He is survived by his father, Larry of Troy, Ohio; paternal grandmother, Doris M. Giangulio of Fort Worth, Texas; and many aunts, uncles, and cousins. He was preceded in death by his mother, Jane Patricia, on Nov. 16, 2011. Lawrence was a 1987 graduate of Troy High School, and he attended the U.S. Naval Academy and Harvard University. He was an investment counselor with Jim Fox & Associates. No services will be held. Private burial will be in Riverside Cemetery, Troy. Friends may express condolences to the family through

Troy Daily News
5 August 2013

Class Status: Alumni

Class of 1991

Donald Allan Turner

Deceased: 4/3/2013

USNA Company: 15

Donald A. Turner died Wednesday, April 3, 2013, at Frisbie Memorial Hospital in Rochester, NH, after a brief illness. Don was born in San Jose, Calif, on July 22, 1969, and grew up in Rochester, New Hampshire.

Don graduated with the Class of 1991 and was a member of the 15th Company. After graduation, Don became a naval aviator with 1500 flying hours first pilot time in single and multi engines, before moving on to the P3 Orion. He served his country with three operational (combat) tours. He was Admiral staff member to Commander Patrol Wings Atlantic (1992); was military liaison for DOD Operation Southern Watch, a Joint Task Force with the mission of monitoring and controlling airspace south of the 32d parallel; a flight school instructor (ground school) for Aerodynamics; taught student pilots from different branches of service including international students from Italy, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia; Master Training Specialist (Naval Aviation Schools Command).  Don retired from the Navy after 11 years. He spoke French, Spanish, Italian, German, Japanese and Arabic and was currently enrolled in UNH working toward his MBA.

Don is survived by his parents, Patricia Turner Dupuis of Strafford, NH and Alan Harris of California. Services with military honors were held in the chapel of the New Hampshire Veterans Cemetery in Boscawen, NH.

Link to the full Obituary can be found here.

From the Berlin Daily Sun:

Strafford-Donald Allan Turner died Tuesday April 2, 2013 at Frisbie Memorial Hospital in Rochester, NH after a brief illness. Born in San Jose, Calif, on July 22, 1969 and lived in Rochester, NH prior to attending the United States Naval Academy at Annapolis. He is the son of Patricia Turner Dupuis of Strafford and Alan Harris of California.

After graduation from Annapolis, Don became a naval aviator with 1500 flying hours first pilot time in single and multi engines, before moving on to the P3 Orion. He served his country with three operational (combat) tours. He was Admiral staff member to Commander Patrol Wings Atlantic (1992); was military liaison for DOD Operation Southern Watch, a Joint Task Force with the mission of monitoring and controlling airspace south of the 32d parallel; a flight school instructor (ground school) for Aerodynamics ; taught student pilots from different branches of service including international students from Italy, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia; Master Training Specialist ( Naval Aviation Schools Command).

He spoke French, Spanish, Italian, German, Japanese and Arabic and was currently enrolled in UNH working toward his MBA.

Retired from the Navy after 11 years, he was the recipient of Meritorious Unit Commendation, Southwest Asia service medal(2),Armed Forces Expeditionary medal, National Defense service medal, Navy Marksmanship Rifleman Ribbon, Navy Pistol Marksmanship Ribbon.

He loved his family and his country and tried to help others whenever he could. Members of the family include his much loved stepfather Donald Dupuis, uncles Donald F. Turner and Frederick A. Turner both of Rochester, stepbrothers Matthew Dupuis and his wife Liz of Concord, Mark Dupuis and his wife Lindsey of Weare, Tim Dupuis and his wife Sarah of Concord, half brother Sean Harris of Ohio, half sister Valerie Honeycutt of N. Carolina, niece Aubrey Dupuis of Weare, many cousins, and Timone his beloved dog.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Chaplain Emergency Relief Fund, P.O. Box 3448, Concord, NH 03302-3448; Veterans Count, Easter Seals New Hampshire, 435 South Main Street, Manchester, NH 03102

Class of 1991

Andrew Lewis Causey

Deceased: 12/15/2011

USNA Company: 8

Andrew Lewis Causey, of Stoughton, MA formerly from Terre Haute, IN, passed away on Thursday December 15, 2011 at Tufts Medical Center, age 42. Born in Lynchburg, VA to Robert Edwin George and Barbara Spiers Causey. Andy was an excellent husband, father and businessman; he graduated from Terre Haute South Vigo High School in 1987 where he competed on the swim and golf teams. He continued his education, receiving a Bachelor of Science in Aerospace Engineering, May 1991 from the United States Naval Academy. He graduated with merit and served as the 8th Company Commander.

Upon graduation, he completed the Navys Nuclear Engineering Program in Orlando, FL and Ballston Spa, NY in 1993. He served on the USS Tunny in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii and with the SEAL Delivery Vehicle Team TWO in Norfolk, VA. He was awarded the Navy Achievement Medal and the Navy Commendation Medal. He was also the USS Tunnys Junior Officer of the Year for 1995. After seven years military service, Andy attended the Kelley School of Business,Indiana University, Bloomington, IN, graduating in May 2000 with a Masters of Business Administration, major in Finance. He graduated Valedictorian and was a member of the Investment Management Academy, Finance Guild, Investment Club. He worked for Stark Investments as a Security Analyst, St. Francis, WI and Boston, MA.

In 2009, he became a partner with Crawford Investments serving as the Equity Analyst. He is survived by his wife, Nicole Pastena-Causey and son Andrew Michael, of Stoughton; mother Barbara Causey; sister Bonnie Causey Johnson and her husband, Kurt; identical twin brother, Robert Edwin Causey, and his wife Eliza; all from VA; in laws Michael and Margaret, Sandra and Leigh-Ann Reed, all of Brockton. He was a beloved uncle to Kara, Kristin, and Blake Johnson; Michael and Charlotte Causey; and Alexis Marie Reed. A funeral service with Military Honors was held Monday, Dec. 19 at 11 a,m. at Christ Church Episcopal, 12 Quincy Ave. Quincy. Burial was private.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, Donor Services, P.O. Box 4072, Pittsfield, MA 01202, and the United States Naval Academy Foundation Annual Fund, P.O. Box 64740, Baltimore, MD, 21264-4740.

Class of 1991

Erik Michael Bender

Deceased: 9/11/2011

USNA Company: 4

Erik M. Bender, '91, died suddenly on September 11, 2011. Beloved husband of Susannah Lyson. Loving father of Dylan. Son of Patricia. Brother of Scott. Fond member of the extended Lyson family.

Wayne Acoba,'91, provided the following memories and perspectives on the passing of Erik Bender: Our Classmate, Erik M. Bender, unexpectedly passed away from a heart attack last September 11, 2011.  Erik was loving husband to Susannah Lyson and father to Dylan Thomford Bender, age 4.  Erik is also survived by an extended Lyson family, his younger brother Scott Bender and mother Patty Riedel.

I met Erik at NAPS where we were roommates in Platoon 1:1.  He arrived in Newport after graduating from high school in Ledyard, CT where he was a wrestler and played soccer.  We both managed to graduate from NAPS and earn appointments to the Naval Academy. At USNA, we were in different companies but still spent many weekends hanging out at his sponsor’s house and enjoying the downtown Annapolis nightlife.  Despite having to attend NAPS to work on his academics, Erik had a brilliant mind for mathematics and engineering.  I have no doubt that if it weren\'t for various ankle injuries that eventually disqualified him for line officer duty, he would have had a very successful career as a submariner. 

After graduation, Erik attended Supply Corps school where the instructors often hounded him for his long hair; which was probably hardly ever cut so that he could fit in at the nearby bars around the University of Georgia campus.

Because of Erik, I grew to love country music.  I will always think of him when I hear old songs from Randy Travis and George Strait.   It was also through Erik that I met my wife Kristi in San Diego, CA.  I didn't talk with Erik often but when I asked him to be in my wedding in Billings, MT, there was never a doubt that he would be there for my wife and I.  For this, I will always be grateful.

After the Navy, Erik started working for small startup company named Dell Computers, where he was one of the first few hundred employees.  At Dell, he was a Systems Integration Manager, leading a group of engineers and helping Dell become the success it is today.

After leaving Dell, Erik and Susannah eventually left Austin, Texas and moved to Massapequa, New York. While there, Erik returned to graduate school and earned his master’s in Secondary Math Education from Queens College. From here, he found his passion of educating and working with junior high school students at Catherine & Count Basie Middle School in NYC.

Erik's school had a high population of students from low-income families as well as numerous students in foster care.  As you can imagine, he was very well-loved by the students and his colleagues.  He spent many evenings talking with his wife Susannah about some of the very difficult situations these poor kids were dealing with on a daily basis; whether it was giving his lunch to a kid who didn\'t have anything to eat that day, or lending a sympathetic ear to a kid living in an abusive situation at home.  Erik's principal described him as hardworking, considerate, and energetic teacher who was an invaluable and irreplaceable member of the school's faculty.  He worked diligently with the students who shared his desire to serve the community, setting a great example for all around him.

As a loving and supportive husband, Erik was always by Susannah's side; especially as she successfully defeated a recent battle with cancer.  Susannah really does not know how she would have survived cancer, surgery and chemo therapy without Erik being by her side every step of the way. 

Erik and Susannah are also blessed with 4 year-old son named Dylan.  Erik was a loving father and it should come as no surprise that Erik was quick to teach Dylan to say "Go Navy, Beat Army!".  I've been told that Dylan is a carbon copy of Erik in the way he looks and acts.  Though Erik has passed away, Dylan will always remember his daddy and he will be present with Susannah every day through their son.  I look forward to the day when I can meet Dylan and share stories of my time with his dad.

Erik taught many of us how to really have fun, enjoy the day and the moment and not worry about all the 'other stuff'.  Regrettably, I lost touch with my friend over the years.  Though, through his passing, he can teach us all one more lesson and that's to take the time to contact that classmate of yours that you haven't talked to for the past few years.  Whether it's through Facebook, email or a text, drop a short note to a classmate and just say hello. 

Erik was a selfless friend, a good man, caring and dedicated educator, supportive brother and son, and lastly, loving husband and father.  We will all miss him.  Cheers.

Thanks for all the good times and memories.  ~Wayne

Ryan Johnson, '91 provided more memories of Erik:  Erik taught me that getting into trouble was only just seeing another side of life.  In Bancroft Hall, we broke almost every rule, including smoking, going outside the windows, tapping into the phone lines, catching mice in the ceiling, and of course, a little alcohol in the room after doing four hours of engineering homework through a Mountain Dew-induced insomnia.  I was still the neat freak, except for all the power strips and extension cords, and he had CD’s and dirty socks scattered all over the place. Things started to change as senior year started sobering us to the fact that boat school was preparation for the Real Navy.  I still remember him coming back from Hospital Point after an innocent soccer play blew out his ankle, pulling off the bandage with the gauze packed down to the bone, knowing that his chances of going warfare were gone.  We snuck out on a weeknight to get tattoos in College Park; his skull and cowboy hat reflected core strength and audacity in a future unknown. I chickened out, managing only to trace a “E=mc2” with a Sharpie where a yearning submariner would be diggity enough to put one permanently.  We both graduated, standings more affected by academics than conduct, his N mostly tarnished by room inspection ICOR Form 2’s, torn up like parking tickets, mine nearly Blackened by a plebe reporting our medicinal Bacardi.  Retired from the uniform now, into a sedentary office career with twenty years of fitreps and marriage and hobbies to my portfolio, I am grateful to have had Erik give me a few lessons about risks and rules and when to ignore them.   I wish I had been able to stay in touch, but life moves fast and there’s truth and regret about living on the world.  We went our separate ways after graduation, but every time I did something more daring than my usual self, I made a mental note to save the tale and to credit Erik when we meet up again to swap stories.

Class of 1991

Mario de los Angeles Carazo

Deceased: 7/22/2010

USNA Company: 19

Lieutenant Colonel Mario “Sugarbear” Carazo, USMC, was lost to enemy action in Afghanistan, on 22 July 2010. His AH-1W Cobra was shot down while supporting Marines engaged in a firefight. He was 41 years old.  Born on 25 May 1969 in Inglewood, CA, to Alvaro and Ana Carazo, Mario entered the Academy where he graduated in 1991, with a B.S. in history, as a member of the 19th Company. 

Mario went on to fly the AH-1W Cobra with the World Famous HMLA-369 “Gunfighters” at Camp Pendleton, CA. He did two Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) deployments, followed by a tour as an instructor at the Fleet Replenishment Squadron. He attended the Amphibious Warfare School in Quantico,VA, and then went back to Camp Pendleton for another tour as a “Gunfighter.” “Sugarbear” attended the United States Naval War College, Newport, RI, as a Major, where he received a M.A. in national security and strategy. He was not satisfied with one M.A., so he attended the School of Advanced Warfighting in Quantico and received his second in Operational Studies. He took this newly found knowledge, and as only he could do, applied it on another deployment—in Operation Iraqi Freedom. He was promoted to Lieutenant Colonel in December 2007 and returned from Iraq in August 2008 to Camp Pendleton, becoming the executive officer of MAG-39, and ultimately the commanding officer of Headquarters Squadron 39. He then deployed to Helmand Province, Afghanistan, in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. 

Mario spent his life focusing on taking care of the people in his life.There was always the “Sugarbear” smile to pick you up, or the “What’s going on, kid,” to begin a bull session, but there was the certainty that he would do whatever was possible to ensure the safety and well-being of everyone he cared about—his family, both immediate and extended. 

He is survived by his wife, Jennifer; their son, Mario, and daughter, Milla; his parents,Alvaro and Ana; his brother and two sisters,Alvaro,Ana, Sandra and their families. Mario was interred with full military honors and an AH-1W fly-over at the Fort Rosecrans National Cemetery in San Diego, CA. The family has established an education fund for the children, “Carazo Education Fund,” at California Bank & Trust, 1127 Wall Street, La Jolla, CA 92037.

Shipmate, September-October 2010

LA Times article, September 5, 2010

California's War Dead - LA Times

Class of 1991

Scott Allen Zellem

Deceased: 8/9/2004

USNA Company: 35

Lieutenant Commander Scott Zellem, USN, tragically died on 10 August 2004 while flying an S-3B Viking during a night training mission off JOHN C. STENNIS.  He was 35 years old. Born on 10 March 1969, Scott grew up in Indiana, PA.  A star linebacker and tight end on the football team at Indiana Area High School, during his senior year he was named the team\'s Most Valuable Player, Defensive Player of the Year and also District 6 Quad A Defensive Player of the Year.  At Navy, Scott continued to excel on the field, but also established many deep and long-lasting friendships with his shipmates.

In 1993, he earned his coveted Wings and reported to VA-128, NAS Whidbey Island, WA, for training as a bombadier/navigator in the A-6E.  His tours included VA-115, Atsugi, Japan; VS-35, VS-41, NAS North Island; and a return tour with VS-35 in 2003 as operations officer.  He amassed 535 carrier landings throughout his career, including combat missions over Iraq. Scott was awarded the Air Medal with Strike/Flight Award as well as numerous personal awards and campaign medals. Scott had the unique opportunity to fly President Bush\'s chief of staff as wingman during the historic presidential visit to ABRAHAM LINCOLN in 2003.  He personally briefed the safety portion of the flight to President Bush and is credited with convincing him that he would look "much cooler" if he wore a flight suit when he got off the jet.  The President said, "If I look as good as you guys . . . I'll do it!" Scott's true legacy, however, is that he left the world a better place than he found it.

A loyal and devoted family man, Scott is survived by his wife, Jennifer; son, Tanner; her parents, Gary and Lynn Hunt; his parents Theodore and Sally; brother, Commander Edward Zellem, USN, and his wife, Cynthia, and their children; and his sister, Mildred and her husband, Robert, and their children. Memorial services were attended by over 1,000 people on the flight deck of JOHN C. STENNIS and later by another 700 people at NAS North Island, CA.  Scott\'s final internment took place on 7 September 2004 with full military honors at Arlington National Cemetery. Memorial contributions may be made to a college fund established for Tanner.  Collegebound Fund, Account 030-03540 FBO Tanner Zellem.  Mail to Bernstein Investment Research and Management, 225 South Sixth Street, Suite 5100, Minneapolis, MN 55402.

Mike Borgschulte '91 & John Kelsey '91 
Shipmate, October 2004

Unofficial Arlington National Cemetery website

Arlington Cemetery Location

Class of 1991

Robert Calvin Toney

Deceased: 7/16/2004

USNA Company: 26

Robert Calvin "Bob" Toney, 35, was killed in a plane crash July 16, 2004, south of Talkeetna. A memorial service will be at 4 p.m. Friday at St. Christopher's Church in Muldoon. Mr. Toney was born Sept. 4, 1968, in Colorado Springs, Colo.; however, he had lived most of his life in Alaska. He moved with his family to Anchorage at 5 when the Air Force transferred his father to Elmendorf Air Force Base. He attended Susitna Elementary, Wendler Middle, and Bartlett High schools, graduating in 1987. He was a band member and played varsity hockey and soccer while at Bartlett. His family wrote: "After briefly attending the Naval Academy he transferred to the University of Colorado, where he graduated with a degree in chemical engineering in 1993. He then worked for Coors and Co. in an engineering subsidiary where he developed a degradable plastic packaging product.

Bob switched gears in 1996 and moved to Kentucky as a project manager. He finally got the opportunity to return to Alaska in 1999 when he landed a job with the engineering firm Veco. "With the help of his dad, he loaded up a U-Haul and returned home to Anchorage via the Alaska Highway with his motorcycle and sports car in tow. While at Veco, Bob was responsible for numerous projects involving the trans-Alaska oil pipeline both at the Valdez terminal and along the North Slope. Bob was an outdoorsman who truly enjoyed all the splendor that Alaska has to offer. He was an avid pilot, kayaker, and snowmobiler as well as an expert skier. Whether it was fishing and flying in the family planes or sailing and diving off the coast of Australia, Bob made the most of his short time here on Earth."

He is survived by his parents, Bill and Betty Toney of Eagle River; brother and sister-in-law, Bill and Deborah Toney of Anchorage; grandmother, Ethel Pigott of Alexandria, Va.; three nephews, Ryan, Blake and Aidan Toney; and constant companion, an Australian shepherd named Max. In lieu of flowers, donations are suggested to The Robert Toney Memorial Fund at the Boys and Girls Club of Southcentral Alaska, c/o Michelle, 2300 W. 36th Ave., Anchorage 99517. 

Class Status: Alumni

Class of 1991

Matthew Guy Conger

Deceased: 1/12/2004

USNA Company: 25

Matthew Guy Conger of Flower Mound, Texas died Jan. 12, 2004 at home with his loved ones. He lived a courageous life following the diagnosis of a brain tumor. He was born May 9, 1968, in Sheridan, Wyo. The family lived in Wyo., Gaylord, Mich., Yukon and Houston, Texas. He graduated from Nimitz High School in Houston in 1986. He attended the U.S. Naval Academy, Texas A&M and North Texas University, where he received a degree in chemistry. He was employed by Hempel Coating USA of Conroe, Texas as a polymer chemist.  

He is survived by his parents, Miller and Marjorie Conger; his grandmother Verna Conger of Olustee; his three sisters: Marla R. Conger and her husband Mansour Baranpourian and his niece Jasmine and nephew Ramin of Flower Mound, Micki Lacker and husband Peter Lacker and niece Katie of Dallas and Marie Murphy and husband Joe Murphy and niece Sara of Gresham, Ore.; his uncle Don Conger and his wife Etta Conger of Friendship; his aunt Jean Brown of Sapulpa; his brother in heart Doug Stokley of Conroe; extended family in Okla., Texas and Mass. and his many loyal and trusted friends. He was preceded in death by his grandfather, J.C. Conger, in 1983. He was a man of honor and humor, and he loved to write. He will be greatly missed. 

Class Status: Alumni

Class of 1991

Anthony Richard Domino

Deceased: 4/11/2003

USNA Company: 13

Lieutenant Commander Anthony "Fats" Domino, USNR, died on April 18, 2003 when his F-5E Tiger II aircraft struck the ground while returning from a Top Gun event near NAS Fallon, NV. Tony was the oldest of four brothers growing up on his parents' farm in Middletown, DE. Growing up, his interests included the outdoors, hunting, fishing, and helping with his father's standard bred horses. At the Naval Academy, Tony distinguished himself on the football field, starting three years as on outside linebacker, wearing number 60. Off the field, he was known for high-speed runs to Ocean City, MD, in his red Corvette. His parents were also well known for taking in more than a few hungry Midshipmen. If you have seen the size of Tony and his brothers you know the Dominos took a few extra hungry mouths in stride.

After graduation Fats reported to flight training. Going the Corpus Christi/Kingsville route, he was Winged in 1993 with orders to the Tomcat FRS. After completing Tomcat training, he was sent to the Jolly Rogers of VF-103 where he supported missions in Bosnia-Herzegovina as well as Operation Southern Watch in Iraq. His next assignment was to the Naval Strike and Air Warfare Center, working in the Air Wing Training Department. There, he served as an adversary mission commander, as well as an air-to-air/air-to-ground tactics instructor. In 2001 Fats left active duty and joined the Fighting Saints of VFC-13 at NAS Fallon as an adversary instructor pilot. Fats was also a commercial airline pilot, flying the Airbus A320 for Jet Blue Airways. Lieutenant Commander Domino's awards included two Strike/Flight Air Medals, two Armed Forces Service Medals, an Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal, and a NATO Medal.

Funeral services were held on 28 April 2003. The small church in Delaware City, DE, was filled beyond capacity, with hundreds of people standing inside and outside the church to pay their last respects. Attendees included Delaware Senator Joseph Biden, who gave Fats his nomination to the Naval Academy and continued to follow his career. Lieutenant Commander Anthony Domino was buried with full military honors including a fly-by of four F-14s from ComFitWingLant. With his death we have lost a great friend, brother, son, and wingman. Those who knew him have all commented on his gregarious spirit, outgoing nature, and love of life. 

-Shipmate, September 2003 USNA Alumni Association - In Memoriam To Those Who Went Before Us - Operational Losses and KIA's since 9/11

Class of 1991

Robert Edward Clukey III

Deceased: 11/3/2002

USNA Company: 30

Lieutenant Commander Robert E. Clukey III, USN, died when his FA-18 Hornet crashed in the Adriatic Sea during training on 3 November 2002. He was 33 years old. Born in Bangor, ME, a native of nearby Orono, "Trey" was a member of the ski patrol, an emergency medical technician, and a state-ranked competitive skier in high school. He received a congressional appointment to the Naval Academy from Senator William Cohen of Maine. At the Naval Academy, Trey earned a bachelor of science degree in oceanography and was a member of the offshore sailing team. He graduated in May 1991, a member of the 30th Company.

Trey attended flight training in Pensacola, FL, and Kingsville, TX, and was designated a naval aviator in September 1994. In October, he reported to VMFAT-101 at MCAS El Toro, CA, for FA-18 Hornet training. In November 1995 he reported to VFA-113 the "Stingers" in Lamoore, CA. During this tour, Trey completed two deployments to the Persian Gulf on Carl Vinson (CVN-70) and Abraham Lincoln (CVN-72), flying 38 combat missions in support of operations Southern Watch and Desert Strike. He was awarded the Strike/Flight Air Medal for his actions in these operations. Call sign "Plumbr," Trey was selected to become a strike fighter tactical instructor in October 1998. He completed the Strike Fighter Tactics Instructor training course at Top Gun in Fallon, NV and was assigned to the Strike Fighter Weapons School, Atlantic in February 1999. While at the Weapons School, he served as the weapons and tactics coordinator and was the air-to-ground employment subject matter expert for the East Coast Hornet community. In August 2001, Trey reported to VFA-34, the "Blue Blasters," as the tactics officer and deployed on George Washington (CVN-73) in June 2002. While on deployment, Trey completed 20 combat missions over Southern Iraq and Afghanistan in support of operations Southern Watch and Enduring Freedom. He also conducted missions in operation Deliberate Forge/Decisive Guardian in support of NATO peacekeeping in Bosnia. In September 2002 he was awarded his second Strike/Flight Air Medal.

Trey is survived by his parents, Robert E. Clukey Jr. and Francis H. Clukey of Bangor, ME; and two sisters, Robin Clukey of Carmel, ME, and Christina Clukey of Bangor, ME. Memorial services were conducted at St. John's Episcopal Church in Bangor, ME, and at the chapel at Oceana Naval Air Station in Virginia Beach, VA.

*Jeff Everage '91 Shipmate, January-February 2003 USNA Alumni Association - In Memoriam To Those Who Went Before Us - Operational Losses and KIA's since 9/11

Class of 1991

LCDR Christopher Charles Tragna

Deceased: 4/2/2002

USNA Company: 24

Lieutenant Commander Christopher Tragna, a Navy pilot, was killed April 2, 2002, when two contractor-owned, two-seater airplanes collided during a formation takeoff at 2:50 p.m., at Naval Air Station Patuxent River. Tragna, 32, was a flight instructor from Long Island, New York.

Lieutenant Kevin Quarderer, 35, a systems flight instructor from Midland, Texas, and two civilians, Karl Schlimm, 37, and Paul Molnar, 38, of Fighter Combat International, were treated and released from the Air Station Medical Clinic.

Naval Air Station Patuxent River fire and rescue units immediately responded. Both planes are owned by Fighter Combat International. The two Extra 300L propeller planes were operating at NAS Patuxent River under a contract with the U.S. Naval Test Pilot School. The Navy is investigating the cause of the mishap.


Chris Schimenti met Christopher Tragna more than a decade ago at the Naval Academy and quickly learned what Tragna's friends and family already knew: He loved flying.

"Chris could not stop talking about aviation and flying," Schimenti said at a memorial service Friday. "It drove me and my wife nuts."

But Tragna's fondness for aviation was also what endeared him to many people, including Schimenti, who spent so much time at Tragna's home that he was affectionately referred to as "the live-in."

Those memories were part of a sometimes emotional, sometimes humorous tribute to Tragna, who was killed April 2 in an aircraft collision here.

The 32-year-old pilot instructor was in one of two planes that were on the same runway, taking off in formation, when they collided.

Around 540 people made up an overflow crowd that spilled out of St. Nicholas Chapel to honor "Trags," as he was affectionately known.

Tragna's parents, Charles Tragna and Anna Hernandez, attended, along with Tragna's brother, Jeffrey Tragna, and half-sister, Joanna Hernandez. Tragna's in-laws also attended, and seated behind Tragna's widow was Colleen O'Hare, whose husband, Lieutenant Commander Ray O'Hare, died in a T-38 crash here in July 2001. Tragna's widow, Desiree, had asked Schimenti to say a few words about her husband. Schimenti and his wife were friends with the Tragnas but became even closer because both couples were "married without children," Schimenti said.

Tragna was remembered as a man who loved his wife, the Yankees, wrestling with his dog, Bungee, and flying.

"We all knew that he loved aviation, and anyone who's ever been to his basement knows that," said Lieutenant Commander Manuel Picon. "It's like a museum."

Picon recalled when he and his wife had a Christmas tree ornament swap with the Tragnas.

"He had made us a model of the Wright flyer out of toothpicks, Elmer's glue and a paper clip," Picon said. "It looked like it belonged on Charlie Brown's Christmas tree and we were proud to have it on ours."

Tragna, a native of Northport, New York, graduated salutatorian from his high school before graduating with distinction from the Naval Academy in 1991.

He was a student in Class 117 at Test Pilot School here and, after designation as a test pilot, he reported to the Naval Strike Aircraft Test Squadron as a member of the F/A-18 E/F Integrated Test Team in July 2000.

At the memorial service, Vice Admiral Joe Dyer presented Tragna's widow with a Meritorious Service Medal from President Bush for the pilot's outstanding service as a flight instructor.

"Demonstrating an unparalleled leadership, enthusiasm, technical expertise, and professionalism, Lieutenant Commander Tragna successfully planned and executed the Airborne Systems and Fixed Wing syllabi for the school," the citation read.

The citation also praised Tragna's qualification in all systems and fixed wing exercises, which allowed TPS to overcome instructor-manning shortfalls and streamline instruction processes.

"As the F/A-18 Technical Evaluation Monitor, he successfully managed 19 flight evaluation exercises, supervising the flawless execution of 160 student sorties. Additionally, he proactively reformulated and updated the content of the flight exercise, thus exceeding the Department of Defense standards. With his extraordinary foresight and attention to detail, he meticulously tracked the qualifications of 11 F/A-18 instructor pilots, ensuring stringent standardization and resulting in zero missed exercise sorties to staff qualification issues."

A memorial fund is being set up for Tragna, and interment with full military honors is scheduled for April 25 at Arlington National Cemetery. Visitation was Tuesday and Wednesday, and a funeral mass was scheduled for today on Long Island.

In his tribute to Tragna on Friday, Schimenti said what many who knew Tragna probably thought: "He died doing what he loved."

The family requests that memorials be sent to the American Liver Foundation, c/o The Brueggemann Funeral Home, 522 Larkfield Road, East Northport, New York 11731.

Class of 1991

Keith Keneipp Takabayashi

Deceased: 11/6/1999

USNA Company: 22

[as of June 2011, no obituary has been published in Shipmate for this classmate], died November 6, 1999.

Class Status: Alumni

Class of 1991

Jonathan Bennett Nolan

Deceased: 5/27/1998

USNA Company: 34

I regret to inform you that a fellow shipmate, the strongest link in the chain in the Class of 1991, has died in the line of duty, serving his country and for America's freedom. Lieutenant Jon Nolan was killed on 27 May 1998 in a tragic accident during a night strike mission in Fallon, NV, when his F/A-18C crashed in the desert. Jonathan Bennett Nolan was born on 25 August 1969 in Syracuse, NY. A native of Syracuse, he graduated from Christian Brothers High School before entering the Naval Academy. While at the Academy, Jon spent the majority of his time in the halls of "Club 34," until graduating as an Aerospace Engineer in 1991.

After commissioning, Jon was attached to Topgun at NAS Miramar in San Diego, CA. He began his flight training in Pensacola in June 1992, with follow on orders to jet training in Kingsville, TX. He earned his "Wings of Gold" in September of 1994 and was assigned to Strike Fighter Squadron 106 for F/A-18C Hornet training. Jon reported to the "Ragin Bulls" of Strike Fighter Squadron 37 at Naval Air Station, Cecil Field, FL in September 1995. Assigned as the Avionics/Armament Division Officer, as well as additional duties as Landing Signals Officer, he completed preparations for deployment with VFA-37. Jon deployed on board THEODORE ROOSEVELT (CVN-71) in November 1996 for Joint Task Group 97-1 to the Mediterranean Sea, Adriatic Ocean, Red Sea and Persian Gulf. He participated actively in Operation Southern Watch and Determined Guard over the skies of Iraq and Bosnia-Herzegovina. Most notably, he enjoyed every bit of the ten port visits and seven countries.

Jon, or "Bass" as he was known to his fellow pilots, will be deeply missed; but more than that, he will always be remembered - his larger than life attitude, his quick wit, his strong faith in God, his love for flying Hornets around the carrier, his honesty, his meals of Slim Fast and salad, his ability to be a true friend, his willingness to give to others and share in so many ways, and most of all for his many laughs. You lived life to the fullest, my friend, and now for you it's only getting better. Save me a seat. We'll miss you brother! Strapping in, pressing on and keeping the faith, like we know you'd want us to. Your friends . . . Jon is survived by his parents, Thomas and Patricia of Syracuse, NY; his brothers, Robert, Chris and Kevin and his grandfather, Walter Lewczak. Rob Turner Shipmate, July-August 1998

Class of 1991

Brian Michael Smith

Deceased: 9/15/1997

USNA Company: 21

Captain Brian Michael Smith, USMC, died in an F/A-18D Hornet crash off the coast of Cherry Point, NC on 15 September 1997. He was the pilot of a two-seat F/A-18 that went down in the bay just short of the Piney Island range during routine night bombing operations. A memorial service was held at MCAS Beaufort on 19 September and the funeral was held in Elyria, OH on 29 September. He is buried at St. Mary's Cemetery in Elyria. Brian graduated from high school in Nashville, TN prior to enrolling in the Naval Academy. He graduated in 1991 and selected Marine Corps Aviation.

He married Maria Rutkowski, a 1991 graduate of the US Air Force Academy, in June of 1991. Brian completed TBS in Quantico, VA, Aviation Indoctrination and Primary Flight Training in Pensacola, FL, then completed Intermediate and Advanced Jet training in Kingsville, TX. He earned his Wings of Gold in August 1994 and selected F/A-18s. After one year FRS training in VFA-106 at NAS Cecil Field, FL, he was assigned to VMFA-224 in MCAS Beaufort, SC. He has been with the Bengals for over two years, serving two deployments to Aviano, Italy.

Brian is survived by his wife Maria who gave birth to their baby daughter, Theresa Marie, 4 days after his death. His parents, Mike and Joanne Smith, currently reside in Prospect, KY. His brother, Kevin Smith, lives in Van Nuys, CA with his wife Amy. Memorial Contributions may be made to: BB&T Bank and Trust Co. of South Carolina, Attn: Kathy Bazzle, 401 Robertson Blvd, Walterboro, SC 29488, payable to Capt Brian Michael Smith Memorial Fund or contributions may be made to Carmelite Monestery of San Giuseppe, Via Della Nocetta, 83, Roma Italia 00164 (please mention: in memory of Brian Smith). Shipmate, December 1997

Class of 1991

Patrick Alexander Sullivan

Deceased: 7/30/1997

USNA Company: 26

[as of June 2011, no obituary has been published in Shipmate for this classmate], died July 30, 1997. Accident while climbing Mount Blanc. Buried at Arlington National Cemetery. Survived by wife Barbara (Leahey) and daughter Maggie.

Class of 1991

Jeffrey Allen Trail

Deceased: 4/29/1997

USNA Company: 19

Jeff Trail was born in De Kalb, Illinois, and was the youngest of five children. His father, Stanley, was a mathematics professor who taught at Northern Illinois University; his mother, Ann, a public elementary school teacher. Jeff was a 1987 graduate of DeKalb High School, and left Illinois for plebe year and Annapolis that same summer. Trail's acceptance by the U.S. Naval Academy was a very big deal "for Jeff and for me," said Stanley Trail.

"Jeff was the kind of guy who was always trying to help people out," the elder Trail said.

"He was kind, caring. He had very few bad habits," he continued. "He went out of his way to be helpful to people."

Jeff started plebe year in 27th company, and after the scramble, spent the next three years in 19th company. On the surface Jeff was reserved, but he had a quiet and strong drive to work toward his goals. We always remember Jeff with a smile, and even during the Academy’s trials, he remained upbeat and positive, and was not above playing the odd practical joke on classmates. Jeff was always involved in something. He played racquetball, sailed, scuba’d and traveled. Jeff lived life on the move.

After graduation in 1991, Jeff was commissioned as a Surface Warfare Officer, and stationed in San Diego. He served in the Gulf War and was a member of the Disabled American Veterans. Jeff was taken from us in 1997, far too early.

To those of us who knew him, his friends, shipmates and family, Jeff was a simple, fun-loving, laid back, and caring human being. He was the epitome of what a beloved and hardworking son, brother, friend, and shipmate should be. He cared deeply about the welfare of those around him, and he never faltered when it came to ensuring their well-being over his own.

Class of 1991

Brian Francis Hussey III

Deceased: 8/23/1996

USNA Company: 2

Captain Brian F. Hussey, Jr., USMC, age 27, died in a training accident in Yuma, AZ, on 23 August 1996. A military memorial service was held at MCAS Cherry Point, NC on 28 August, and a funeral Mass was held in Westminster, MD on 2 September 1996. Another memorial was held for family in East Greenwich, RI on 12 September 1996. Brian was born on 29 June 1969 in Providence, RI. After living in several areas of the country while growing up, he finished high school in San Ramon, CA in 1987. He was in 2nd Company at the Naval Academy, where he consistently stood out in all areas. He truly embodied the mission of the Naval Academy, as he stood out "morally, mentally, and physically." Even as he found his passion in the History Department, he never let other areas of focus suffer. He regularly attended Mass (he always noted exactly how long it took), and was perpetually in peak physical shape, making the rest of us pale by comparison. As we approached our First Class Year, and most of us just wanted to get to the big day, Brian took on two huge tasks. He was a Trident scholar and the Brigade Training Officer. Even though everyone gave him the required grief for being a "striper," deep down, everyone that knew Brian admired him and looked for him to take the lead.

After graduation, Brian met the love of his life, Susan, and they were married in June of 1993. Brian took his commitment to excellence into the Marine Corps. He was near the top of his class at The Basic School, and displayed his unique, solid leadership style for all the other Marines to admire. He excelled in NFO flight school and earned his wings of gold on 18 February 1994. He lead the pack again at the Electronic Warfare School at Corry Station, Pensacola by graduating at the top of his class. After a year of training at the EA-6B FRS in Whidbey Island, WA, he checked into VMAQ-1, MCAS Cherry Point, NC. After three months to get settled, he was off on a six month deployment to Aviano, Italy to participate in Operation Deny Flight over Bosnia. Brian's awards include the National Defense Medal, the NATO Medal, the Air Medal (3rd Award), the Sea Service Deployment Ribbon, and the Armed Forces Service Medal.

Brian was not only an outstanding officer, but a true friend. His presence is sorely missed and he will not be forgotten. He was very proud of being a member of the Brigade of Midshipmen and the United States Marine Corps. Brian is survived by his wife Susan, of Newport, NC: his parents Brian and Kathy, of Saunderstown, RI; sister Erin Morgan, of Jamestown, RI. He was also very close to his in-laws, John and Chris Wisniewski; and sister-in-law Stephanie House, all of Westminster, MD. Any correspondence for Susan Hussey can be sent to 17 Bell Rd., Westminster, MD 21158. A memorial fund has been established in Brian Francis Hussey Jr.'s name at USNA and information can be obtained from the USNA Alumni Association. In addition, contributions can be made in Brian's name at Johns Hopkins Children's Center. Semper Fidelis, Brian! W.L. Campbell, Jr. '91 Shipmate, January-February 1997

Class of 1991

Ronald Joseph Mobayed

Deceased: 10/3/1995

USNA Company: 36

The class of 1991 mourns the passing of Ronald J. Mobayed, 27, who died on 3 October when the CH-46 SEA KNIGHT helicopter he was flying went down in the Atlantic near Virginia Beach during training exercises. A very special person, Ronny Mo touched the lives of many of us, and he will be sorely missed by all who had the pleasure of serving with him. He is survived by his father Joseph; mother Vivian; sisters Lori, Lynn, and Julie; brother Kenneth; and fiancee Suzanna Lamorte. Growing up in Brooklyn, Ronny was competitive from the start. To control his enthusiasm, his family had a 'harness' created for him, with a rope tethered to keep him from wandering too far. Ronny dealt with this situation as he would later do at the Academy and flight training, he conquered through perseverance and sheer will. Eventually, little Ron was able to break his reins and free himself, much to the dismay of his family.

At age eight, Ron and family moved to Springfield, Virginia. Ron would continue to excel both in school and on the playing field. He was an outstanding athlete, starring in football, basketball, baseball, and wrestling at West Springfield High School. In the classroom, Ron was exceptional, and a member of the National Honor Society. He was a natural leader who exuded confidence and enthusiasm, traits which would become most evident during his years in the Navy. Ron gained acceptance to the Naval Academy Preparatory School in Newport, RI in the summer of 1986. There he made the first of what would become a large cadre of great friends. The relationships developed that first summer in Newport have carried on until today, as he always remained in touch with friends, mo matter where you were.

At the Academy, Ron became a very popular member of the Class of '91 through his goodwill, kindness and zest for life. His entrance would often light up any midshipman gathering, as you just knew good things were in store when Ronny Mo was with the group. Ron played catcher on the baseball team until a pitch hit him in the eye. He not only almost lost his future career in flying, but his eyesight as well. But he battled back; the injury eventually healed and Ron was back in the lineup, this time playing football. Ron walked on the 150's team his junior year and won a starting spot. He was having a banner year when bad luck struck again, this time a severe knee injury that again threatened his chances to fly. Though Ronny Mo was MIDN 1/C Whiteworks his firstie year, he was once again able to overcome a potentially career-ending injury. Thus he was able to select his first love, naval aviation, on service selection night.

Onward to Pensacola to pursue his dream. In Florida, Ron became involved with the Big Brother/Big Sister Foundation, actively sponsoring a "little brother" in the Pensacola area. Ronny loved children, and soon he and Kyle became inseparable. Ron was the father figure presence that Kyle never had; and surely Kyle looked to Ron for the strength and support that much of his family and friends had drawn upon for years. Kyle meant so much to Ron that he had included Kyle as one of the major beneficiaries in his will. This is the kind of charitable man that we knew, who would literally give you the shirt off his back if it meant helping someone out. Ron came to Virginia Beach and Helicopter Combat Support Squadron Six full of energy and excitement. He completed a Mediterranean deployment with an HC-6 detachment, and returned with French wines and Turkish rugs. Ronny loved to cook exotic meals and enjoyed fine wines. This proved a boon to his roommates, who could sway a date with an excellent bottle of Israeli or French wine, or hire chef Ronald to prepare a culinary delight. Ronny Mo was quite the well-rounded naval officer.

While in Virginia Beach, this most romantic guy finally found love, and literally in his own back yard. He met Suzanna Lamorte of Oakton, Virginia shortly before a trip to Panama. His extensive writing, which he was always good at, kept the channels open and the two of them soon became a pair. On 30 September, he proposed to Suzanna, and both of them were on top of the world. They were to be wed at the Academy Chapel on 19 October 1996.

Ron was a hero to those who knew him. He was a special person in that he always brought good cheer to life, even when he himself may have been down inside. His enthusiasm infected those who worked with him, he was a joy to serve with. He was our friend, our brother, our son, our love. Ronny Mo will be sorely missed, but not forgotten; for the virtues and tenets by which he lived, his life will be remembered and followed by those who knew him. Ron's family requests that donations be sent in his name to: Big Brothers/Big Sisters of Virginia Beach 5690 Greenwich Road, Suite 200 Virginia Beach, VA 23462 or Big Brothers/Big Sisters of Northwest Florida 301 West Government Street Pensacola, FL 32501.

**Matt Lattig, Kevin O'Conner, John Pereira, and Doug Fee Shipmate, December 1995; State of Virginia House Joint Resolution No. 259

Class of 1991

Marcus Blue Pletcher

Deceased: 9/14/1994

USNA Company: 4

Marc Pletcher passed away on September 14, 1994, while assigned to the F-14 FRS. He died as a result of a mid-air collision of two Tomcats off the coast of Virginia. Also lost was his pilot; the other F-14A returned safely to MCAS Cherry Point.

Marcus earned his wings as a Naval Flight Officer in June 1993.

Sept. 14, 1994, a little over a year after assuming duty flying his dream machine an F-14 Tomcat at Oceana Naval Air Station near Virginia Beach, Va. Marcus Blue "Moon" Pletcher's jet went down. He had a mid-air collision with another jet at night, 50 miles out in the Atlantic Ocean. The other jet limped backed to Cherry Point, N.C. Pletcher was never found. A search for the young pilot, who was originally from Chelsea, Mich., was called-off after 24-hours.

Class of 1991

Alton Lee Grizzard

Deceased: 12/1/1993

USNA Company: 20

Adapted from Washington Post, “A QB still inspires a generation of the Army-Navy rivalry, 25 years after his tragic death” by John Feinstein, 28 November 2018.

Every year, as he listens to the singing of the alma maters at the conclusion of the Army-Navy game, Anthony Noto thinks about Alton Grizzard.

Noto graduated from the U.S. Military Academy in 1991. Grizzard graduated from the Naval Academy the same year. They weren’t teammates; in fact, they barely knew one another. And yet, regardless of the outcome of the game, Noto thinks about Grizzard.

“It gets chaotic on the field when the game ends,” Noto said this week. “I didn’t get to see Alton after our last game as seniors but didn’t think it was a big deal. I figured we’d be together for years and years, giving each other a hard time and telling one another stories. If I’d only known …”

There was no way for Noto to know on that frigid December afternoon in 1990 that Grizzard would be killed three years later while stationed at the Naval Amphibious Base in Coronado, Calif., where he trained future SEALs.

“It was completely impossible to believe,” said David Lillefloren, who played with Grizzard in high school and at Navy.

It is always impossible to believe when someone dies at 24, especially in a senseless shooting such as the one that took place that night in Coronado. It was particularly hard to believe that Grizzard, who teammates and opponents agreed symbolized everything that was good about the Army-Navy rivalry, could be gone.

Noto heard the news from Bob Sutton, who was Army’s coach at the time. “I had called him to wish him luck that Saturday against Navy,” Noto said. “He had just heard the news about Alton.”

“We must have talked about him for 30 minutes. I remember saying, ‘He was the kind of guy who could have been president someday.’ Coach Sutton said there was no doubt about it, and then we both started to cry.”

Even as a boy, Grizzard seemed to have the ability to lead — not always in the right direction. “To be honest, as a little brother he was often a pain in the butt,” said his sister, Dale DeSarro. “He was always daring me to do things I knew we shouldn’t be doing. He’d say: ‘Let’s jump off the carport. It’s not that far down.’ He always got me to go first. I should have known better, but he always had the ability to talk me into it.”

Grizzard was a four-year starter at quarterback for Navy. He was the team captain as a senior in 1990, but it is the 1989 Army-Navy game that everyone talks about first when they think about Grizzard.

He beat us,” Sutton said. “That’s not taking anything away from any of their other guys, but he was the reason we lost that game. He was the toughest guy on that field.”

Trailing 17-16, Navy drove from its 28-yard line to the Army 32 with 1:02 left and faced fourth and two. The weather was miserable, and a long field goal would have been unlikely. Grizzard ran left and was hemmed in by two Army tacklers. But he bulled forward and picked up the first down by inches. The Mids moved to the 15, and kicker Frank Schenk hit the winning field goal from 32 yards with 11 seconds left.

“That drive was all Alton,” Noto said. “Every time he carried, we had him pinned, and he still came up with three, four yards. That fourth-down play symbolized who he was in a microcosm. He was indomitable.”

Grizzard was the son of a Navy veteran and lived his dream to become a SEAL. Andrew Thompson, Navy’s defensive captain in 1995 who went on to serve 19 years in the Marines, met Grizzard once — and remembers it vividly.

“I was a plebe [in 1992], and Alton had just finished SEAL training and was about to deploy,” he said. “He came back to see our Tulane game in November. We were winless. Coach [George] Chaump just turned the pregame talk over to him. He got very wound up emotionally talking about the pride that was part of playing football at Navy.

“By the time he was finished he was just about in tears. We all were. We were beyond ready to play. We won that day — our only win that year. I remember him as a larger-than-life figure. Just the fact that he’d gotten through SEAL training told you how tough he was. Very few officers become SEALs.”

Twenty-five years after his death, Grizzard’s sister teaches senior English at Green Run High in Virginia Beach, where both went to school, and is in charge of a scholarship named for her brother that helps send a Green Run graduate to college every year.

To be eligible, a student has to do three things Grizzard did at Green Run: letter in two varsity sports, have at least a 3.4 grade-point average and exemplify the leadership he displayed — dating from the days when he talked his sister into jumping off the carport.

“The one thing we require that’s different from Alton is that the person not have a full ride to college,” DeSarro said. “Alton had that.”

When funds for the scholarship began to run low a dozen years ago, Lillefloren and a number of Grizzard’s old teammates and friends from Green Run and Navy started a golf tournament to raise funds and keep the scholarship going.

“It’s impossible to believe it’s been 25 years,” Lillefloren said. “But in a lot of ways all of us feel as if he’s still with us. Everyone has stories about Alton.”

Grizzard is buried in Arlington National Cemetery. Many will no doubt make a point to visit Section 59, Site 1192 on Saturday.

DeSarro remembers the phone call her mother got from Lillefloren’s mother the day her brother died. “She was calling to say how sorry she was,” she said. “Only we hadn’t heard. The Navy hadn’t told us yet because there were so many protocols to go through before official notification.

“Sometimes that day feels like a lifetime ago. Other times it feels like yesterday.”

A week from Friday, after they have had dinner with family and friends, former football players from Army and Navy will meet at an Irish pub on Walnut Street in Philadelphia. This has become an annual tradition, a gathering to swap stories, talk trash about the next day’s game and be reminded of the closeness they all feel — regardless of the outcome of a football game.

For the past 20 years, Lillefloren and Noto have been there. This year, Lillefloren will be wearing his Navy letterman’s sweater, part of the bet the two make every year: loser has to wear his letterman’s sweater to the bar the next year and buy all the drinks.

“I spent 14 straight years wearing my sweater and buying all the drinks,” Noto said. “I brought some extra teammates last year to make Dave catch up.” “I told him to leave those guys behind this year,” Lillefloren said, laughing.

As midnight approaches, Noto and Lillefloren will walk to the bar and order shots. Years ago, it was just the two of them ordering. Now all the ex-Army and ex-Navy players in the bar will follow them.

When everyone has a drink in hand, Noto and Lillefloren will say together, “Alton.” They will raise their glasses, look up at the sky and drink.

And then, as they do every year, they will have a good cry.

Arlington Cemetery Location


Class of 1991

John Lee Higginbotham

Deceased: 10/18/1991

USNA Company: 5

[as of June 2011, no obituary has been published in Shipmate for this classmate], died October 18, 1991.

Class of 1991

James Richard Lederer

Deceased: 10/12/1991

USNA Company: 24

[as of June 2011, no obituary has been published in Shipmate for this classmate], died October 12, 1991

Class of 1991

John Joseph Lonergan

Deceased: 10/12/1991

USNA Company: 13

Navy Ensign John Joseph Lonergan, 23, of Philadelphia's Fishtown section, was at the threshold of a lifelong dream when he was killed early Saturday, 12 October 1991, in an auto accident near Middletown, Delaware.

That dream was to be a naval officer. When he died, he was only months away from his first assignment, in the engine room of the USS SAIPAN, a troop carrier and helicopter ship based in Norfolk, VA.

"He loved everything about the Navy!" said his father, Joseph. "He couldn't wait to get on a ship. He did love being at sea. When he was on summer cruises, he enjoyed every minute of it."

He especially enjoyed a cruise on the destroyer USS CROMMELIN, his father said. "He took to it as a fish takes to water," he said. 

Ensign Lonergan already had realized a part of his dream. "When he was a kid, I took him to the Army-Navy games," his father said, "and as a young boy, he loved the midshipmen and was impressed by them in their blue greatcoats and white hats and scarves, standing strong and tall on the field. He always asked me if I thought he could be a midshipman, and I told him if he worked really hard and applied himself in school, he would have a chance. I gave him a paragraph - and the author is unknown - 'Press on. Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence.'"

As a student at Northeast Catholic High, he got A's and B's and was senior class vice president. He played tenor saxophone in a jazz band and the high school marching band. He was a good student, but not an outstanding one. "His counselor told him he didn't have a chance to go to the Naval Academy," his father said. Ensign Lonergan didn't believe that and applied anyway. When he was turned down, he entered a Naval Academy preparatory program. His persistence paid off. "He worked diligently to upgrade himself, and was accepted the following year for the Class of '91," his father said.

He received his commission in May. He was attending the Surface Warfare Officers School in Newport, RI, to prepare for the USS SAIPAN assignment. 

He was about 6 feet tall and 175 pounds with light brown hair, bright green eyes, a quick smile, and athletic build. "He was really a typical, All-American boy, well-liked, impeccable in behavior and dress," according to the Rev Vincent J. Kowalewski, who knew Ensign Lonergan when the ensign was at Northeast Catholic. He was a leader and a hard worker who had "a practical and wholesome spirituality," Fr. Kowalewski said.

When he died, Ensign Lonergan was on the way from Newport to Annapolis to meet his parents and some friends for the Navy-Air Force football game on Saturday. And though much of his life had been dedicated to the pursuit of one goal, his father said, Ensign Lonergan was thoughtful, generous, and kind. "He blessed the lives of everybody he knew," he said. "He was really a thoughtful person. He was always thinking about other people."

Even on the trip to Annapolis, he had thought to buy presents for his sponsoring family, Mike and Bobbi Jones, who had provided him with his home-away-from-home during his academy years.

At 2:30 AM Saturday, New Castle County police said, the ensign and four other naval officers were headed south on Route 896 near Middletown when a car crossed the road and smashed into them. Ensign Lonergan, who was driving, and another officer, were killed instantly. Two others were injured, one critically. His father and his mother, Sally, his only survivors, waited all night for him to arrive. They learned of his death about 7 AM Saturday.

A Mass of Christian Burial was held at Immaculate Conception Church on Thursday, 17 October 1991.

Class of 1991

Robert L Barr

Deceased: 9/25/1989

USNA Company: 9

[Midshipman] died Sept. 25, 1989 in a swimming accident while at the Naval Academy.

Class of 1991

Midshipman Donald L Landry

Deceased: 8/14/1989

USNA Company: 17

Donald Lee Landry, 20, a Midshipman Second Class at the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland, died August 14, 1989, in York County, Pennsylvania in an automobile accident, along with three other Midshipmen.

Midshipman Landry was born in Italy, near Pisa, where his father was stationed with the military. He grew up in Arlington, Texas, and was a graduate of Arlington High School, where he was a member of the cross country and track teams. His high school coach described him as an outstanding athlete and said he had only lost one race as a senior. He made the all-district track team and qualified for the state championship meet. He was named Star-Telegram Athlete of the Week during the Spring of his senior year.

At Arlington High, he was a member of the National Honor Society and the French Club. He was also a member of the French Club and varsity cross country team at the Naval Academy. He was a member of the St. Maria Goretti Catholic Church in Arlington.

Landry was preceded in death by his mother, Margaret Evelyn McRea Landry. Survivors include his parents, Bob and Mildred Landry of Arlington; three brothers, Michael Landry of Columbus, Ohio, John Starkey of Grandview and Tim Starkey of Burleson; two sisters, Patty Thornton of Eureka, California, and Becky Roten of Virginia Beach, Virginia; and grandparents, Lawes and Stella Landry of Donaldsville, Louisiana, and Mrs. G. O. Coker of Turkey.

Class of 1991

William James Donovan

Deceased: 8/14/1989

USNA Company: 29

William Donovan was born in Kingsville, Texas, and graduated from Memorial Senior High School in Houston, Texas, in 1987. In high school, he held varsity letters in track and cross country, was named most outstanding student, and was a member of the National Honor Society.

At the Naval Academy, Will majored in history and received one varsity letter in track and field in 1989 as a steeplechase runner. He is the son of William and Karen Donovan.

Class of 1991

Andrew Gene Myers

Deceased: 8/14/1989

USNA Company: 4

Andrew Myers was born in Fort Collins, Colorado, and graduated from Greeley West High School in 1987. In high school, he was a two-time state track champion and a member of the soccer team and the National Honor Society. He was also a student council representative.

At the Naval Academy, Andrew majored in mathematics and received one letter in cross country and two letters in indoor track and track and field.

He is the son of Thomas and Doris Myers.

Class of 1991

Michael W Loeffler

Deceased: 1/16/1989

USNA Company: 4

[Midshipman], died January 16, 1989.