Image courtesy of the Huff family used with permission, personal collection.

My time in the UMW History department has been well spent. The skills I acquired have made me a better reader, writer, and researcher. The faculty is exceptionally professional and the curriculum challenging.

The Great War has been my special area of interest and the projects I have accomplished allowed me to gain a rich knowledge of the conflict. It would be remiss if I did not thank Dr.’s Blakemore, Fernsebner, and McClurken for all the support and encouragement when I would dive “head first” into a particular topic.

I would like to especially give a shout out to the late Professor Susan Llewellyn. Susan was my teacher then later a friend who’s passion for all things history was infectious and it rubbed off on many students who truly loved her. She was so supportive when a shy 50+ year old slipped into the very corner seat of her classroom. Susan gave me the confidence to pursue a degree, she told me it was never too late.

My one wish has been to honor the incredibly brave souls that were subjected to such a horrible conflict. I could never have imagined that another terrible war would occur on the heels of a pandemic and yet, here we are. The phase that “history repeats itself” has come to pass as the Ukraine suffers under tyranny.

My heart breaks for the innocent victims of yet another senseless war. The most important thing I learned in all of my research was the futility, waste, and loss of life that dominates armed conflict. As I close out my major in History, my most fervent prayer is that the senseless killing will come to an end.

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