U. S. Naval Academy

Class of 1979

Hot Items

Latest Letter from Sean

Greetings Fellow Reunion Aficionados,

In 71 (or 79-8) days the Class of 1979 will gather in Annapolis for our 40-Year Reunion. As I type this message, we stand at 296 Classmates registered to attend. Along with our guests, that is close to 530 people!

If you have been putting this off to the last minute, be aware that on July 15 the prices for the Crab Feast and Tailgater food will go up by $20 each for adults and $5 per child. So please jump onboard – Grab your credit card and go and go to https://Signupnow.events/usna1979 and get registered. Do it today. WARNING ORDER: Prices will go UP on July 15th, so do it today!

I have announced a goal of at least ten people from each company – that would be 360 people right away. Some companies have already clobbered that goal, but many have not. This is my last email before the “shaming” begins. I will give you all another couple of reminders before the 15th, but get to this now, please! A list of who has registered, by company, can be found at our class website, www.usna79.com. I try to update it weekly.

Key Reunion Events begin on Thursday September 12. On Friday the highlights will be the Class Meeting, Class Memorial Service, Supe Meeting, P-Rade, and evening Crab Feast. Saturday wlll bring the Class Tailgater with an unbelievable assortment of food and drinks and a victory over the East Carolina Pirates! Reminder, you and members of your party will need football tickets to get into the Tailgater (N-Star Room at the Stadium).

Also, note that Reunion Check-in will be at McGarvey’s downtown, and there in no HQ Hotel – so you are free to make your own hotel arrangements. Company reps should be reaching out to you with further info.

And don’t forget to get in on the Class Trivia Contest!

One of the biggie things we need to do as a class prior to our reunion is hold Class Officer elections prior to our Class Meeting on September 13th. A Nominations and Election Committee has been appointed to oversee the election of the President, Vice President, Secretary, Treasurer, and Six Battalion Representatives. Those elected will take office on January 1, 2020 and serve for ten years, until December 31, 2029. Watch for a detailed message from me on the nominating process and election procedures. While not set in stone yet, we are looking to open the floor for nominations from July 15 – August 2, publish the ballot after that date, give candidates for contested positions a chance to make their case, and hold the actual election online in the August 19 – September 2 timeframe. The Committee Chairman will report the election results at the Quinquennial (Every-Five-Years) meeting of the Class on Friday September 13 at a place and time TBD.

To be eligible to run, a candidate must be a graduate member of the Class, in good standing, and must be willing to serve. More to follow soon.

Enjoy a safe and sane 4th of July this Thursday! Happy Birthday America! USA-USA-USA!!!!

Beat Army!!!

Omnes Viri 79,


Previous Email:

Greetings Classmates,

It is with great sadness that I pass along the news of the passing of Jack Bruno (13th Co and D&B) on Sunday of complications from ALS. The following obituary provides further details including Visitation (tomorrow) and Funeral (Thursday) services.

Jack Anthony Bruno, 61, of Williamsburg, VA, passed away on June 2, 2019. He was preceded in death by his mother, Frances Joan Vaccaro and his father, Myron Anthony Bruno. Jack received his M.Ed. from the College of William & Mary. He also earned a BS in Systems Engineering from the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, MD. Jack served in the U.S. Navy during Desert Storm and retired as a Lieutenant Commander. He was a member of St. Olaf Catholic Church, the American Legion, Cursillo, and the Jamestown/Yorktown Foundation. Jack enjoyed baseball, was a Eucharistic Minister, Sachristen, Liturgical Reader, a Cursillo Rector, Spiritual Director, and co-founded the American Legion Post 1776 baseball team. He was devoted to his family and friends. Jack is survived by his wife, Susan A. Bruno; son, Evan Anthony Bruno (Christina S. Black); stepsons, Jeffrey Gililland (Jennifer Gililland), Ryan Gililland (Cynthia Skala), Michael Gililland (Sarah Gililland); stepdaughter, Jennifer Marzana (Alejandro Marzana); grandchildren, Mateo Marzana, Anna Marzana, Bennett Gililland; brother, John J. Bruno (Cathy Bruno); sister, Rosa C. Bruno Beach (Timothy R. Beach); nieces and nephews, Ian A. Bruno, Christopher Beach (Tammy Beach), Adam Beach (Michelle Beach), Megan (Timothy Gerbracht); and great-nieces, Sophia Gerbracht and Leah Gerbracht. A visitation will be held from 5 PM to 7 PM on Wednesday, June 5 at St. Olaf Catholic Church, 104 Norge Ln, Williamsburg, VA where a memorial service will be held on Thursday, June 6 at 11 AM. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to The ALS Association Gift Processing Center, PO Box 37022, Boone, IA 50037-0022. Online condolences may be offered at www.nelsenwilliamsburg.com.

Published in Daily Press on June 4, 2019

A note of condolence may be sent to Susan Bruno at 426 Crooked Stick, Williamsburg, VA  23188-1433. I have sent one on behalf of the Class.


The All Academy Challenge is now over and the Class of 1979 trounced all but the Class of 1965 in individual donors. Overall the Alumni Association, in five short days, raised $968,431 from 3,800 donors. The Top Five:
1965 – 220
1979 – 206
1989 – 164
1967 – 162
1978 - 157

In short, we had the best performance for the 70’s decade. Thanks to everyone who responded to Fozzie’s call! I do not have the information on the final Service Academy standings – it may be posted on www.usna.com.


Omnes Viri 1979,



Previous Email:

Greetings Classmates,

I have some important news about a special offering from the Class Store, but first, an update on Reunion Registration.

Registration for the 40-Year Reunion of the Class of 1979 to be held September 12-15, 2019 in Annapolis, MD has been open for two weeks. We just passed the 100 Classmate threshold with 31st Company leading the way with eight classmates registered so far. I have not heard about any glitches in the process, at least nothing that hasn’t been resolved quickly, so that’s good and means that even after 40 years, we are still capable of following directions! All 36 Companies have at least one person registered – except my former neighbors down the P-way in 16th Company Come on Fred! Get your guys in gear. Ron and Sandy – I’m looking forward to seeing you both!

A Reunion requires many people to be there ready to pick up where they left off. It isn’t only about seeing the guys from your Company either. While at USNA, we all became brothers who shared a common experience. Our roommates and company-mates became family. Then 40 years ago, on May 30, 1979, we threw our hats in the year and embarked on a great adventure. That day also marks the last day we actually saw some members of our 79er family. So, to those of you who have never been back for a Reunion, the time is now. You have been missed, and your attendance at this Reunion will be remembered. Since 1979, too, we have all forged strong friendships with other members of our 79er family, including those who we may not have known well at Annapolis, but served with on ships, subs, or squadrons. It will be a real blessing to see many of those friends back in Annapolis. The more 79ers who return for the Reunion, the greater our success and enjoyment. And I include all of our non-Grad classmates in that too! Whatever the reason you left USNA before graduation, you still have classmates who miss you and want to catch up with you again.

So – I’m really looking for 79 to step up and come back to Mother B in epic numbers. Join the 100+ Classmates who have already registered today or this weekend. Get out your credit card and turn on your computer, and go to the link: https://signupnow.events/usna1979. As you will see, you even have an option of splitting your payment in thirds. Enjoy the registration process, and remember to do this as soon as possible.

While we will keep registration open for a long time, we also need to have some good numbers in play so we don’t over or under order any venue site or giveaways. To give you incentive to register now, remember, the prices will increase after mid-July.

Now to the Class Store. I have heard from several classmates asking, “Whatever happened to our Class Crest? Why is it not being offered on our shirts? What’s the deal on this “N” with Class of 1979 superimposed on it?” Well, good news. The answer to these questions are that our Reunion Vendor, Anchor Enterprises, has been in this business for a long time and knows that you get better sales when you offer new product and new designs. That’s why this year they are offering the “N” logo as well as a Fouled Anchor 79 logo. All Class Store purchases made through June 2 (that’s two weeks from this Sunday) will ship the week of June 24th. For those who wanted the Class Crest – here’s the good news. After June 2nd, the three men’s Polo shirts being offered will have the option of using the Class Crest. Class store order made between June 2 and August 4 will be shipped in time to be included in your packing for the trip. The store will remain open through the Reunion.

For our Company Reps – I’ll get your names in to the Registrar very soon so you can track your Company-mates. Still looking for a few Reps.

One more call for your participation in an Alumni Survey. I have taken it and it is really simple, and I found no reason to worry about security of the data. This is strictly voluntary, but the more inputs made, the better the outcome. The link to the survey is: https://surveys.max.gov/index.php/289441?lang=en - Your participation in this survey is appreciated.

See you all in September!

Beat Army!

Omnes Viri 79,



Previous Email

Greetings Classmates,

As promised, Registration for the 40-Year Reunion of the Class of 1979 to be held September 12-15,2019 in Annapolis, MD is now open. The Registration Process is pretty straightforward, so I don’t expect too many problems. Some of the information, such as venue sites for events is still being updated, but you are essentially going to be asked a few things. First of all, have your Credit Card ready to charge!

When you go to the link, make sure you are entering data for the USNA Class of 1979 Forty Year Reunion. You will first be asked to Register on the website signupnow.events. You need to put in a valid email address and select a Password (Rules for that are listed). You need to do this in case you have changes to your order later. We may also use this site for Class Elections, so make sure you keep track of your email and Password – you probably will use them again.

Each classmate will be charged a Registration Fee of $100. Then each classmate and guest(s) will also be charged $100 each for the Friday Night Crab Feast and the Saturday Tailgater. (Kids are less)  For a couple that will total $500 plus a small processing fee. Note, prices will go up after July 15 for late registrations. A small amount from each registration and meal cost will come back to the class for our operating funds. When you go to pay (check-out) you will be asked if you want to pay it all now, or over three months. That second option should help you if you are on a tight budget.

When you get logged in, you will enter your name and USNA Company. You will also put in the name of each guest you are bringing – spouse, children, grand-children, friends, etc. The names provided will be used to make your official nametag IDs for the reunion events. So make sure the name included is spelled correctly.

I am also putting out a call for all Company Reps. If you are a Company Rep, let me know and I’ll get you the gouge for some admin rights to company registration data.

OK – is everybody ready??? Here is the link: https://signupnow.events/usna1979. Enjoy the registration process, and remember to do this as soon as possible.

I hope you all enjoyed a happy May Day! The first of May has long been associated with the beginning of Spring and is recognized as a workers’ day or Labor Day internationally. So enjoy the day, dance around the May Pole, and don’t do anything that would cause you to utilize the other “Mayday.” By the way, Mayday got its start as an international distress call in 1923. It was made official in 1948. It was the idea of Frederick Mockford, who was a senior radio officer at Croydon Airport in London. He came up with the idea for “mayday" because it sounded like the French word m'aider, which means “help me." (Full disclosure - I plagiarized that last bit off Google) For today, 5/4, Happy Star Wars Day and tomorrow, Happy Cinco de Mayo.

On Friday, 4/26/2019, I was in Annapolis for the Spring Meeting of the Council of Class Presidents, or COCP. In no particular order, here are some of the highlights I would like to pass along:

  • There are always corporate sponsors in attendance, and among those were representatives of various Annapolis Hotels. The former Loews Hotel is undergoing a significant renovation, so be aware of that. I think it is now called the Annapolis Hotel but will rebrand as the Graduate Hotel. The Westin will start renovations after the Football Season. The Double Tree still gives you a cookie!
  • The Supe, VADM Ted Carter, briefed us. His relief will be VADM Sean Buck, contrary to Annapolis rumors it would be a woman or a Marine. Change of Command expected July 26th. Admiral Buck is USNA 1983 and a P-3 NFO by warfare specialty. It is about time we had a “Sean” as the Supe!!! The Commandant will turn over after Graduation to Captain TR Buchanan, a submariner.
    • USNA Infrastructure has been called out for serious deficiencies due to aging. The place is 173 years old, after all. Hopper Hall, building now, will be the last new building on the Yard unless or until an older building is torn down. Hopper Hall will be the Cyber Center and will have a SCIF (150-person Auditorium and two classrooms so designated). Opens Spring 2020.
    • The Chapel Dome will be completely replaced, so expect scaffolding to spoil your Reunion pictures. However, when it is replaced, it will shine like a new penny for about four weeks. It will then turn brown (like an old penny) for about 20 years before again turning green. Here’s to all of us seeing it turn green again!
    • Ricketts Hall is also being renovated and will be a showcase for Navy Athletics.
    • The 4-Year Graduation Rate at USNA is 86 -90% which is way over the 50% rate at most STEM Colleges.
  • The Alumni Association briefed us on what they have going. A big emphasis was on the upcoming 30 May to 3 June annual “All Academy Challenge” where the five service academies compete to get the highest percentage of alumni to make a donation ($5 is the minimum asked). Navy has never won this – it is usually Coast Guard or Merchant Marine, but sadly we always seem to lose to that school up on the Hudson. The other one, a trade school in Colorado, is usually last. In last year’s competition, the Class of 1965 led the way with 248 individual contributions. Second, at 154, was OUR CLASS in a tie with 1984. So way to go!!! 1979 minus 1 was fifth with 145. The COCP filmed several Spirit Spots that may be used for the campaign.
  • Chet Gladchuk, the AD, always speaks to the COCP. This time he noted the passing of Joe Bellino and George Welsh and that there will be a special recognition at the first home football game this year – August 31 vs. Holy Cross. Chet pointed to Navy Baseball pitcher Noah Song as an example of our athletes in action – Noah being one of he best pitchers in the nation.
  • Finally, we received briefings from three service organizations:

We were also asked to again push the Alumni Survey. I have taken it and it is really simple, and I fond no reason to worry about security of the data. This is strictly voluntary, but the more inputs made, the better the outcome. The link to the survey is: https://surveys.max.gov/index.php/289441?lang=en - Your participation in this survey is appreciated.

Saturday evening, 4/27, I returned to Annapolis (after battling wrecks on I-66 and a bus fire on the Beltway- More confirmation of my smart move out of the I-95 corridor) for the annual Trident Scholar Poster Session and Banquet. Joining Janet and I in representing the Class of 1979, the sponsor of the Trident Scholar Program, were Fozzie and Mary Pat Miller, Frank and Peg Klein, Jeff and Anne McFadden, and Chuck and Deb Dixon. The Trident Projects of a record 16 members of the Class of 2019 were showcased, and included titles such as “Asymmetrically Loaded Gridshells: A Parametric Study on Bracing Methods and a Case Study For Use In Disaster Relief,” “Near Wake Characteristics of a Marine Propeller in the Presence of Free Stream Turbulence,” and my favorite head scratcher, “Quantum Singularities in Black Hole Spacetime Systems with Timelike Classical Singularities.” RADM David Hahn, Chief f Naval Research, was the dinner speaker. At the Graduation Week Awards Ceremony, I will have the honor of presenting the Class of 1979 Trident Scholar Prize to one of those 16 midshipmen.

By the way, I hope to soon announce some headway on closing our funding gap toward the Trident Scholar Program portion of our Legacy Gift Campaign. If you haven’t donated yet, there is still plenty of time.

Finally – Navy Notre Dame 2020 in Dublin, Ireland. If you plan to go, please contact Mary Ellen Doyle (vbnative@gmail.com; (757) 705-0565) and Tom McLernon (thomasmclernon@aol.com) who are coordinating the event for the USNA 1979 contingent.

See you all in September!

Beat Army!

Omnes Viri 79,


News Articles about Classmates - click on the date for the full article

Features Written by '79



Last updated:

Shredder Enterprises © 2019