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April 10, 2007

Purdue's ROTC Hall of Fame to hold induction ceremony

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - Six alumni on Saturday (April 14) will be inducted into the Purdue University Reserve Officer's Training Corps Hall of Fame.

The induction ceremony, which honors distinguished graduates from the Army, Navy/Marine and Air Force ROTC programs, will take place at 2 p.m. at the Purdue Armory

The inductees will include:

- Robert Weiss, Army, class of 1942. Weiss entered active duty following graduation from Purdue and served in Europe during World War II. He participated in the Normandy campaign and the Battle of the Bulge. His experiences during the Battle of Mortain led him to write the book "Fire Mission! The Siege at Mortain, Normandy, August 1944." For his service during the war, he was awarded the Silver Star, two Purple Hearts, the Presidential Unit Citation and the French Croix de Guerre. Weiss left active duty in 1945 and went to law school at the University of Chicago. He then moved to Portland, Ore., and has been practicing business and tax law.

- Col. Charles T. Ostick, Army, class of 1960. Ostick entered active duty following graduation as an infantry officer and as an Army aviator. He served two tours in Vietnam, one in Korea and one in Panama during his 27 years of active duty. Ostick earned the Legion of Merit, Distinguished Flying Cross, two Bronze Star for Valor awards, a Purple Heart, two Army Commendation Medal for Valor awards, Vietnamese Cross of Gallantry and the Combat Infantryman's Badge. Following retirement, he pursued a second career as an adult educator with the University of Georgia and volunteers for a number of community organizations.

- Lt. Col. James M. Turley, Army, class of 1961. Turley entered active duty in 1962 and served in a number of assignments throughout his nearly 23 years of service. He served as a platoon leader, company commander, assistant inspector general and a Purdue Army ROTC professor of military science from 1981-84. Turley retired from the Army in 1984 and has since served Purdue in a variety of positions, including research associate at Purdue's Center for Public Policy and Public Administration, a lecturer in the Department of Organizational Leadership and Supervision, and development director of the Lafayette Food Finders Food Bank.

- Col. Howard E. Bethel, Air Force, class of 1961. Following graduation, Bethel entered active duty at Purdue to pursue graduate work and obtained his master's degree in engineering. He then was assigned to the Aerospace Research Laboratories at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Ohio, where he earned his doctorate and was recognized for his work by the Office of Aerospace Research and the Air Force Association. Bethel's work on the engine of the new F-16 garnered many accolades, and he was promoted to deputy commander for propulsion, where was responsible for the design, development, test and initial operational support of all Air Force engines. After retirement, he joined Universal Technology Corp. in Dayton, Ohio.

- Lt. Col. Raymond L. Rigel, Air Force, class of 1964. After graduation, Rigel flew KC-135s out of Grissom Air Force Base. He was deployed several times to the Southeast Asia combat zone. In 1969 he was reassigned as a weapons systems officer and flew day and night combat missions over North Vietnam, South Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia. Rigel was shot down during his last mission in July 1970 but was rescued the next day. He retired in 1984 and then purchased a farm in Scott County. Rigel also works with his family in a tractor dealership and serves on the boards of many community organizations

- Lt. Col. Ronald S. Neubauer, Marine Corps, class of 1965. While in the Marine Corps, Neubauer served as an infantry officer, a military police officer and a naval aviation observer. He also served twice with Guard Company, both times at Washington, D.C., and twice as provost marshal, once at Marine Corps Air Station in Iwakuni, Japan, and again at Marine Corps Air Station at Kaneohe Bay, Hawaii. Neubauer finished his military career by serving as the director of law enforcement and corrections at Headquarters Marine Corps in Washington, D.C. Following his military career, he worked in law enforcement and now is the executive director of the Eastern Missouri Police Academy.

The Hall of Fame was established in 1974 to recognize Purdue's Army ROTC graduates who have distinguished themselves through leadership, integrity, courage and discipline. In 1999 the bylaws were amended to include the recognition of distinguished alumni from all Purdue ROTC programs. Service to the nation and community and leadership in the fields of business, government, education or other professional fields are used as the basis for selection. More than 150 former Purdue ROTC students have been inducted.

Writer: Christy Jones, (765) 494-1089,

Source: David Tate, chair of the ROTC Hall of Fame committee, (765) 494-1392,

Purdue News Service: (765) 494-2096;

Note to Journalists: Full biographies of the inductees are available by contacting Christy Jones, Purdue News Service, at (765) 494-1089,

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