news-category: Veterans Day

Gardner-Webb Alumnus, Maj. Jeremy Davis, is Speaker for Veterans Day Service

Photos of the Veterans Day Service on 11.11.2011

Event Held at the 11th Hour of the 11th Day of the 11th Month Honors Nation’s Servicemen

BOILING SPRINGS, N.C.—Gardner-Webb University will join citizens across America in observance of Veterans Day on Nov. 11 with a service at 11 a.m. in Dover Chapel. The day to honor the nation’s military has been celebrated since 1919, when President Woodrow Wilson established Nov. 11 as the first commemoration of Armistice Day, when fighting ceased in World War I—on 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month in 1918.

Wilson said, “To us in America, the reflections of Armistice Day will be filled with solemn pride in the heroism of those who died in the country’s service and with gratitude for the victory, both because of the thing from which it has freed us and because of the opportunity it has given America to show her sympathy with peace and justice in the councils of the nations…”

Maj. Jeremy Davis

In 1938, congress voted to make the 11th of November in each year a legal holiday—a day to be dedicated to the cause of world peace and to be thereafter celebrated and known as “Armistice Day.” In 1954, after World War II had required the greatest mobilization of soldiers, sailors, Marines and airmen in the Nation’s history; after American forces had fought aggression in Korea, the 83rd Congress, at the urging of the veterans service organizations, amended the Act of 1938 by striking out the word “Armistice” and inserting in its place the word “Veterans.” With the approval of this legislation on June 1, 1954, Nov. 11 became a day to honor American veterans of all wars.

Gardner-Webb’s Veterans Day Service will include a message from Maj. Jeremy Davis, U.S. Marine Corps. Davis joined the Marine Corps and received his commission as a Second Lieutenant after completing Officers Candidate School (OCS) and graduating from Gardner-Webb University in December 2005. He completed the Basic School (TBS) and Air Command and Control Officer’s Course in 2006.

He was promoted to the rank of First Lieutenant and Captain and deployed to Iraq in 2006 and 2008 in support of Operation IRAQI FREEDOM. From 2009-2012, he served as the Recruiting Station (RS) Operations Officer and Executive Officer. During that time RS Fort Lauderdale was ranked second in Eastern Recruiting Region for three straight years.

GWU President Dr. William Downs speaks at last year’s service.

Upon completion of recruiting duty, Captain Davis reported to Expeditionary Warfare School, Quantico, Va. Additionally, he augmented summer training at Officer Candidates school as a platoon commander and history instructor from 2012-2013. Capt. Davis reported to Marine Tactical Air Command Squadron 38 (MTACS-38) to serve as the Assistant Operations Officer and Tactical Air Command Center (TACC) OIC.  In that capacity he deployed to Afghanistan in support of Operation ENDURING FREEDOM. 

In May 2015, Capt. Davis separated from the Active Component and accessed into the Select Marine Corps Reserve. Presently, Maj. Davis serves as the Recruiting support Officer (RSO) for Recruiting Station Charlotte, N.C. Additionally, Maj. Davis mobilized in support of Operation Freedom Sentinel from October 2019 to April 2020 in Setermoen, Norway, to serve as the Marine Coordination Element Logistics Officer.

His personal awards include: Navy Commendation Medal with two gold stars, Navy Achievement Medal, and Army Achievement Medal. Maj. Davis is selected to the rank of Lieutenant Colonel. 

Also participating in the service will be the Gardner-Webb University ROTC, and GWU Concert Choir. University Police Officer, Kenneth Phelps, a sergeant in the U.S. Army, will lead the pledge of allegiance. Gardner-Webb President Dr. William Downs will give the welcome and invocation. Norma Mott, staff sergeant in the U.S. Air Force and instructor of nursing, will have the Old Testament Reading, and Nate Evans, second lieutenant in the U.S. Air Force, will provide the New Testament reading. Interim Vice President for Christian Life and Service Neal Payne will give the closing prayer and benediction.

During the service a slideshow will feature the names of Gardner-Webb students, staff and faculty who have served in the military.  

Name, Year Graduated, Military Branch, Years of Service, Rank

  • Ashley Anderson, 2019, Army , second lieutenant
  • G. Kenneth “Ken” Wilson, 1958 from GW Junior College, U.S. Navy, Korean War, 1955-57
  • Jeremy Davis, 2005, U.S. Marine Corps, major
  • Neil Brock, alumnus
  • Rev. Robert Setzer, 2007/2012, Army 1977-1981, specialist 5
  • Richard Rick Holbrook, alumnus
  • Johnny McGee, 1967, Army, Vietnam, 1968-1970, sergeant
  • James “Jim” Humphries, 2013, Army, 23, SFC E-7
  • Adam Webb, 2017, U.S. Marine Corps, corporal
  • Frederick “Fred” Jennings, 2022, USMC, Gulf War, 1995-2003, staff sergeant
  • Chad Brown, 2005, Army, 8, SSG/E-6
  • Jarrett Clontz, 2020, Army, over 17 years, sergeant
  • Ken Queen, 2022, Navy, 20, chief
  • John Ben Johnson, alumnus
  • Kathy Sutton, alumna
  • Garret Allen, alumnus
  • Kacey Whisler, 2003, Air Force, 2003-2012, OEF and OIF, captain
  • Tamika Craig, 1995, U.S. Air Force, Desert Shield & Desert Storm, 6
  • Daniel Buckley, 2012, Army, OIF III, 10, sergeant
  • William “Bill” Morris, 1990, U.S. Army, 37 years 29 days, colonel AI
  • Josh Houser, 2007, Army, 12, Major
  • Jack King, Esquire, 1975, U.S. Marine Corps, 1975-1976, Recalled to Active Duty 1991, major
  • Andrew McClain, 2021, U.S. Army, 14, Captain
  • Robert Crawford, D. Min. 2011, U.S. Marine Corps, Vietnam, 3, corporal
  • Glenn Neil Brock, 2001, U.S. Marine Corps, 86-92, E-3
  • Joseph “Joe” DePriest, 1965, U.S. Army, Vietnam Era, 1967-70, staff sergeant
  • Lena Clark-Copeland, 1983, U.S. Navy, Persian Gulf War Era, 1985-2000, E5
  • Judith “Judy” McClain, Non-graduate class of 65, U.S. Air Force, Vietnam, March 1967 to November 1975, staff sergeant, E-5
  • Ben Reavis, 1973, Army, Vietnam, 1971-1977, specialist
  • Robert “Rob” Golde, 2014, Marine Corps, 7, captain
  • Aaron Rabin, 2015, Army, 4, captain
  • Avis Owens Morrow, 2015, Women’s Army Air Corp (WAAC), World War II
  • Officer Kenneth Phelps, 1982, U.S. Army, 1983-1990, sergeant
  • Dale Riviere, 2021, U.S. Marine Corps, OEF, 7, sergeant
  • Samantha Jo Christopher, 2021, U.S. Marine Corps, 2009-2018, staff sergeant
  • David Roux, 2021, U.S. Navy, 2012-2015 AD, 2019-present, Reserves, 0-3
  • Monet Lawton, 2021
  • Yolande Crisp, 2021
  • Kevin Ward, 2022, Army, 9, sergeant
  • Robin Scott Griffin II, 2022, U.S. Marine Corps, 5, sergeant
  • Hector Garibay, 2022, Army, Dec. 1997 – Feb. 2017, 20, chief warrant officer 3
  • Roger Queen Jr., 2021, Army, 2011-present, sergeant
  • Professor Campbell Sr., 2021, U.S. Marine Corps, 4, E3
  • Blake Smith, 2022, Army, 3.5 years, specialist E-4
  • Jon Volovski, student, U.S. Air Force, Panama-Gulf II, 1985-2012, MSGT
  • Keith Bryant, student, Army, 6, first lieutenant
  • Henry Gagner, student, Army, 4, Corporal
  • Robert and Debra Hasselwander, students, Army, 16 years, E-5
  • Robin McClure, student, Army, 2000-2007, E-4 SPC
  • Ron Newcomb, faculty/staff, U.S. Army, Gulf War, 1988-1991, sergeant
  • Andrew McClain, faculty/staff
  • Dr. Lorell Gordon, faculty/staff, Naval Reserves, Desert Storm, 8, second class petty officer
  • Dr. “Jim” Rennie, faculty/staff, Air Force, Post Vietnam through post 9/11, 30, colonel
  • Johnny Bostic, faculty/staff

Gardner-Webb University is North Carolina’s recognized leader in private, Christian higher education. A Carnegie-Classified Doctoral/Professional University, GWU is home to nine colleges and schools, more than 80 undergraduate and graduate majors, and a world-class faculty. Located on a beautiful 225-acre campus in Boiling Springs, N.C., Gardner-Webb prepares graduates to impact their chosen professions, equips them with the skills to advance the frontiers of knowledge, and inspires them to make a positive and lasting difference in the lives of others. Ignite your future at

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