VMI Cyber Corps

Alumni and Friends of VMI:

Cyber Corps Numbers: 472

New Alumni Association Address: The VMI Alumni Association web site has moved to a new address. The address is: http://www.vmiaa.org. This site is now maintained by the folks in Moody Hall. A special thanks to Rick Kurtz '92 for taking the initiative to launch the initial Alumni Association site. He did one heck of a job.

Honor Court Update: The following AP article provides an update relative to the six cadets who were drummed out late in the last academic year.

Expelled VMI Cadets Eye Readmission

.c The Associated Press

LEXINGTON, Va. (AP) - Five of six cadets expelled from the Virginia Military Institute in May over a series of spankings are asking the school's governing board to let them back in.

The six were expelled for lying about the beatings, and VMI's honor code prescribes but one penalty for lying: expulsion.

The former cadets initially appealed their expulsions to a U.S. District judge in Roanoke, but he told them that, though their treatment raised ``grave questions of constitutional magnitude,'' he was reluctant to rule on the case until they had exhausted appeals with the school.

Two of the three seniors filed appeals with VMI's board of visitors several weeks ago, and the three expelled freshmen filed appeals Thursday. The remaining senior has until Tuesday to appeal to the board.

The six were drummed out of VMI's cadet corps in May. A seven-member student honor court found that the three freshmen initially lied when they told upper-class investigators they had not been beaten by the three seniors; and the seniors lied when they also denied the beatings, which involved a belt.

VMI officials say the three seniors were punishing the freshmen for infractions ranging from listening to country music to spilling a drink.

Attorneys for the three freshmen contend the cadets' constitutional rights were violated when they were awoken shortly after midnight Feb. 10 and told they would be expelled unless they talked about the beatings to student investigators. They also were told they could not discuss the incident with anyone but the investigators.

The seniors initially denied knowledge of the spanking incidents but later admitted their roles.

Other News Article: The following article appeared in the July 26 issue of the Richmond Times Dispatch.

Keydets, former coach may be courting disaster

John Markon

Specialists in animal behavior concluded years ago that lemmings have
taken a bad rap. The majority of these furry little arctic rodents,
famous only for their fabled mass suicides, really don't have a death

Which may put lemmings one up on people.

As of this moment, for example, Virginia Military Institute and Bill
Stewart, VMI's former football coach, are headed toward a courtroom
collision that's all but guaranteed to leave both parties fouled and
wounded. Common sense almost seems to demand that Stewart's lawsuit
against VMI never see open court.

"You'd think that way," said Stewart's attorney, S.D. Roberts Moore of
Roanoke, "but a jury will decide this case. I'm 100 percent convinced it will come to trial."

Stewart, VMI's most successful football coach since Bob Thalman's
retirement, was given a choice between resigning and being fired in
December of 1996, shortly after he'd signed a contract extension that
carried him through the year 2001.

It was a stunning development made slightly less stunning when it was
revealed that, at one VMI practice, Stewart expanded his vocabulary to
include perhaps the most politically noxious of racial epithets. Most of
the details of this incident have already been aired and don't appear to
be in too much dispute.

To prevail in court, however, VMI will almost certainly have to
establish that the coach displayed a pattern of racist behavior. Off the
record, VMI insiders say this can be done.

"They've made mention of other alleged incidents," said Moore. "Bill
denies them all."

Whatever a jury makes of this impending mudslide, Stewart must know that
his reputation, already in doubt, may not survive it. Now an assistant
in the Canadian Football League, Stewart may be trading the rest of his
coaching career against his requests for a $1.35 million settlement.

But VMI may have far more on the line. While some of Stewart's defense
will almost certainly be on the technical side, relating to specific
items and language in Stewart's contract, there's no reason Moore has to
stop there.

Moore could well ask a jury to develop its own context of insensitive
and/or discriminatory attitudes at VMI and to evaluate Stewart's
behavior against such a context. There's also no reason to think Moore
would limit his scope to racial discrimination. Sex discrimination, the
hottest of hot buttons at the Institute, could be brought front and
center at a time when VMI's first female cadets, who won their admission
in court against relentless opposition by the school, are completing
only their second year of enrollment.

A reminder that colleges have much to lose in these cases was provided
earlier this month when a former assistant football coach sued Notre
Dame after being dismissed. The coach's specific complaint was age
discrimination, but testimony in the trial went far afield and Irish
head coach Bob Davie came away from it having been painted as deceitful
and devious.

Moore has done this before. His last appearance as a sports-page figure
came earlier in the 1990s when he won handsome out-of-court settlements
for deposed coaches Bill Dooley and Charlie Moir at the expense of
Virginia Tech.

He'll try to portray Stewart as a good man who made and admitted a
mistake but was sacrificed to let VMI score points for political
correctness. Keydet football fans might add that the school has scored
few other points since Stewart departed.

If it gets nasty, it could get very nasty. If it ever gets in front of a
judge, both sides may wonder if it wouldn't have been may wonder if it
wouldn't have been worth $1.35 million

In Search Of Employment: Bruce Thompson '81 will retire from the Navy on Oct 1 of this year. He has a BS in Electrical Engineering from the Institute and a MBA from Chaminade, University of Honolulu (yeah, that's ths school who beat UVA and Ralph Sampson a number of years ago). Bruce presently lives in northern Virginia. He's a Navy nuclear trained submariner and has considerable experience n engineering management, missile and inertial guidance systems. He is interested in obtaining a job in the northern Virginia area or anywhere in the Southeast. It's best to contact Bruce at his AOL address: ThompsonBE@aol.com.


In Search of Production Advice: On a personal note, I'm looking for some leads on film or video production companies. Over the last couple years I've written some scripts for a couple TV ads and I'm looking for some leads on production companies so I can float some of my ideas. If anyone knows anything about this sort of stuff, or knows of some contacts, please let me know.

That's it for this week. The Cyber Corps is glad to be back from a little R&R.

Yours in the Spirit,
RB Lane '75

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Last Updated: October 11, 2009

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