By; John J. Bury, USN, retired, Vietnam War Veteran
Author for ©COVVHA
It was back in the summer of 2012. Doug Ferguson, Director of Alumni Programs of Delaware County Community College called me. He inquired about a couple article I had written for our locale newspaper, the Delaware County Time, Media, Pa. We chatted about those articles, his thought was my writing was an inspiration to veterans who needed help. I told Doug there are several articles I had written, all of which had been published nationwide. I sent all of them to him. Told him my writings speak for themselves. My thinking was that he was curious about what I write and why.
As time passed on, nothing more from Doug. I had forgotten all about his inquiry. It was about the last week of October, I receive an e-mail from Doug to call him. In our phone conversation, he announced to me that I had been selected by the college, of which I am a graduate Class of ‘85, to be Veteran of the month November 2012, veterans month. I was very much surprised to be selected for this honor. My thought at the moment, who am I to be so honored? There are many veterans out there other then me. The college has well over 250 veterans attending the college. I felt surely there were some who had been wounded in battle and some who had been award various medals for their heroism. Their story would be more interesting then my own.
Doug’s comment to me was, the Vietnam war with all its criticism back in the day, there was a need for its recognition; plus the work I was doing in having Vietnam veterans recognize, especially those who fell sick to Agent Orange Dioxin poisoning. He sent me a format of five question. A BIO of my college days and what that education did for me. Sort of a life experience during and after college.
I gave much thought of what and how to write this BIO. I though something brief, to the point and factual, sort of in a way I normally write for the news media. Hence, below is what I came up with: Also The actual write up as published in the Alumni news bulletin, goto: www.dccc.edu/alumni-and-friends/alumni-news-and-updates
Alumni News and Updates Delaware County Community College.
1. What year did you graduate from Delaware County Community College and with what degree? 1985. Business Management. Did it the hard way. Worked all day, college at night.
2. Did you pursue further academic goals? No.
3. Where are you now? Living in Middletown Township, Delaware County, Media, Pa. Retired.
4. What is next for you professionally? After retiring from the US Navy with 22 years service in 1975, I took a job with Williamson Free School of Mechanical Trades teaching disciplines of engineering in the Power Technology Department. After eight years, I moved on to become Director of Engineering and Plant Facilities at Westtown School. I retired from the work force in 1999. Some years later I become an Advocate for Vietnam War Veterans many of these veterans are infected with Agent Orange Dioxin who had served on land, in the air and at sea. Presently I am a writer/columnist, being published in news publications nationwide. I write about the effects of Agent Orange Dioxin and what it has/is doing to those who served in the Vietnam War. My goal is to have House Bill HR-3612 and Senate Bill S.1629, passed. These two Bills if passed will afford Vietnam veterans of all branches of service the VA benefits and compensation they deserve.
5. What advice would you give to current students and Alumni to capitalize on the education they receive from the College? Move forward at a pace you are comfortable with. Learn from other workers, those who know the job best, they are your asset to excel. As one of my DCCC professors would say, “Always remember there are two sides to a coin, understand both sides before coming to a conclusion.” Sounds like good advise to me.