March 29, 1999
Friday, April 16, 1999, The Citadel will host a reception for
Mrs. John Widder and Master Sergeant Ray Bows, U.S. Army (Ret.),
author of Vietnam Military Lore, Legends, Shadows & Heroes.
The reception will take place at 3:00 p.m. in the Daniel Library
and will be followed by the afternoon parade on Summerall Field.
The public is invited to attend both the reception and the parade.
Mrs. Widder is the mother of Captain John David Widder, Citadel class of 1959, who served two tours of duty in the Green Beret Special Forces in the Vietnam War; Captain Widder was killed in Vietnam on March 24, 1965. Since 1970, the Widder Medal has been presented in honor of David Widder to the most outstanding senior Army ROTC Distinguished Military Student cadet as selected by his or her peers.
At the reception Mrs. Widder will present a copy of Bows' book to the Daniel Library. In the newly released book, Bows devotes a chapter to David Widder's heroic actions in the Vietnam War and offers an unabridged account of the Vietnam War including the significant contribution to the war by Citadel graduates Terry Cordell, Henry Deutsch, George Morton, and David Ragin.
Bows has, as US. News and World Report writer noted Joseph L. Galloway, states, "dug deeply for the details of life and death that make the soldiers whose names graced base camps in an orphaned war live again. He has reached into official records and yellowing letters, bundled in old trunks stored in attics and barns, for the truth about such men. These stories illuminate some of the proudest moments and the darkest corners of the history of America in Vietnam."
While in Charleston, Bows will also speak on his book to the Cordell Airborne Ranger Club and the Semper Fidelis Club on Thursday, April 15 at 6:00 p.m. in Jenkins Hall Auditorium on The Citadel campus. The lecture is free and open to the public.