report by Peter Davenport, George Mason Chapter Secretary/Treasurer
The United States Navy Memorial recently announced its 2016 recipients of the Lone Sailor Award, one of whom is the current George Mason Chapter President, Robert Shumaker. He will share this award with Senator John Glenn and Daniel D’Aniello (Chairman of the Carlyle Group) at a “black tie” dinner at the National Building Museum in Washington, DC on 14 September.
Shumaker is being recognized for his leadership role throughout his thirtysix year navy career, and in particular for his resistance during his eight years as a POW in Vietnam. A recent Book, named Defiant, by Alvin Townley, describes Shumaker’scontributions as one of the “Alcatraz Eleven”, a group which their captors singled out because of their leadership roles. These eleven POW’s were subjected to particularly harsh conditions and included such notables as VADM Jim Stockdale, RADM Jeremiah Denton and Col. Sam Johnson (all of whom had subsequent political careers).
The Lone Sailor Award dates back to 1987 and includes individuals whose lives have been beneficially impacted by their sea service experiences. Past recipients include John McCain, presidents Ford and Bush (41), Senator Sam Nunn, and from the sports world, Bob Feller, Yogi Berra and Arnold Palmer. More information is available on the website www.navymemorial.org and linking to “Lone Sailor Awards Dinner”