Monday, May 28, 2007

Memorial Day at Dartmouth

Last week, ABC News made the Wright choice for its Person of the Week. To read more about the inspiring work that Dartmouth President Jim Wright has been doing on behalf of severely injured veterans, see this story from The New York Times:

When he first met James Wright, the president of Dartmouth College, two years ago, Samuel Crist was in a hospital bed at the National Naval Medical Center in Bethesda, Md., recuperating from gunshot wounds from a firefight in Falluja, Iraq.

“I was pretty heavily medicated, so my memory is a little bit foggy, but he was visiting people and asking about their experiences in the war, and pushing people to get an education,” said Mr. Crist, 22, who grew up in Lafayette, La. “He said he’d been a marine, too, and he’d gone to college after he got out as a lance corporal, the same rank I separated at.”

That hospital visit changed things for both Mr. Crist and Mr. Wright: On Mr. Wright’s advice, Mr. Crist enrolled in college courses in Texas, and next fall, will transfer to Dartmouth.

Mr. Wright, 67, meanwhile, has made eight more visits to wounded veterans at Bethesda and at Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington, and, with the American Council on Education, started a program to provide individualized college counseling to seriously injured veterans.

We'll look forward to welcoming Mr. Crist and others to campus in the fall and, as ever, be grateful that we can honor them on Veterans' Day rather than Memorial Day.

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