March 3, 2016
Call to Order: The meeting was called to order by President Robby McClure. DeDe Sanogo gave the invocation, followed by Larry Sindel, who led us in song, accompanied by Les Greer at the piano. Tom Martenstein introduced our guests along with visiting Rotarians.
Student Guest: Saty Putcha presented our student guest, Brian Patrick Anderson, from Theodore High School.
Announcements: Tommy Fulton made a plea for our CART fund, which helps fund Alzheimer’s research. Former member, Fr. Greg Lucey, was welcomed back.
Program: Rod Frazer was introduced by Vaughan Morrissette. His program emphasized the details in his book, Send the Alabamians- 167th Alabama Infantry Regiment of Rainbow Division of WWI.
Mr. Frazer took his inspiration for his book from the books of two famous Mobile authors. The first was William Edward March, who wrote Company K. The second was Eugene Sledge, who wrote two books about World War II.
Mr. Frazer described his research for the book, which told about the recruitment of the Alabama men who became famous for their ferocity and tremendous espirit de corps. General Douglas MacArthur was tremendously impressed by these men. American General Edward Plummer was also impressed by these Alabamians, but was also frustrated by their rambunctiousness.
To honor these men, Mr. Frazer purchased some land in France upon which some of the bloodiest battles of WWI were fought. His purpose was to commission a statue portraying a soldier carrying a casualty. More than half of the original 167th Infantry Regiment lost their lives in these battles. It was here that the soldiers from Alabama distinguished themselves by turning back the Germans at Champagne, considered a key win for the allies.
He closed with the observation that Douglass McArthur made his name behind the success of the Alabama Division.
The meeting was adjourned at 1:00 pm.
March 3, 2016