On Dec. 28, 2017 at the Doubletree by Hilton in Cranberry Township, the Western Pennsylvania Service Academies Parents Clubs held the Nineteenth Annual All Service Academies Ball. The ball was hosted by The U.S. Air Force Academy. Dan Steighner, 2017 All Service Academies Ball chair, said each year Parents Clubs throughout the country gather during the holiday week to honor and thank outstanding women and men, our nation’s best and brightest, for their commitment to serve as the future leaders of the greatest military on Earth.
The 2017 ball celebrated the past, present and future of our five United States Service Academies: the United States Air Force Academy, the United States Military Academy, the United States Coast Guard Academy, the United States Naval Academy and the United States Merchant Marine Academy. Also celebrated on this evening were the Tuskegee Airmen. “Tuskegee Airmen” refers to all who were involved in the so-called “Tuskegee Experience,” the Army Air Corps program to train African Americans to fly and maintain combat aircraft. The Tuskegee Airmen included pilots, navigators, bombardiers, maintenance and support staff, instructors, and all the personnel who kept the planes and pilots in the air.
On hand for the celebration were retired Lt. Col George Hardy, retired Col. Charles McGee and Dr. Eugene J. Richardson Jr., Pilot Class 45A. With Mike Harvey, chief meteorologist, WTAE-TV as toastmaster and Brigadier General Kristin L. Goodwin, Commandant of Cadets, United States Air Force Academy as guest speaker, ball guests enjoyed a fabulous meal and witnessed the cadets and the midshipman grand march.
The Tuskegee Memorial Foundation in Sewickley—America’s largest memorial to heroic Tuskegee Airmen and Duquesne University Military Psychological Clinic were the selected charities for the Academies Ball. The 2018 ball chair will be Warner N. Macklin III.
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