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News > Gathering of Eagles selects 2012 honorees
Gathering of Eagles selects 2012 honorees

Posted 4/20/2012   Updated 4/20/2012 Email story   Print story


by Courtesy Air University Public Affairs
Air University

4/20/2012 - MAXWELL AIR FORCE BASE, Al  -- The U.S Air Force's Gathering of Eagles symposium, held annually at Maxwell, recently announced the honored Eagles invited for the 2012 program, scheduled June 5-9. The 2012 Gathering of Eagles theme - "Adversity-Victory-Legacy" - embodies the experiences of the selected Eagles, among them test pilots, prisoners of war and a Women Airforce Service Pilot.

The 2012 Eagles are retired Brig. Gen. Robert Cardenas, retired Army Brig. Gen. Rhonda Cornum, retired Col. Hank Fowler, retired Navy Lt. Leon Frankel, Tech. Sgt. Robert Gutierrez, retired Col. Gail Halvorsen, retired Col. James Harvey III, Gloria Heath, retired Polish air force Brig. Gen. Miroslaw Hermaszewski, retired Col. Howard "Scrappy" Johnson, retired Col. Jim Kasler, retired Lt. Col. Ed Saylor and retired Col. Leo Thorsness.

During Gathering of Eagles week, the selected Eagles are interviewed and presented to the Air Command and Staff College. students and community to further air space and cyberspace history.

In addition, displays of aircraft statics from many of the Eagles' aircraft are open to the media and base public. For 2012, the C-54 Flying Dutchmen Air Museum is part of the Gathering of Eagles Week display, as was the aircraft flown by 2012 Eagle Halvorsen during the Berlin Airlift.

Gathering of Eagles is a yearlong, student-run research elective at the college, which collects, educates and advocates air, space and cyberspace history through biographical studies and personal interviews with the student-selected Eagles.

The 15-person student team is responsible for selecting, contacting, researching, visiting and interviewing the Eagles, as well as planning and executing all fundraising and Gathering of Eagles week activities. The GOE Foundation provides two annual scholarships to Air Force ROTC students and also supports various aviation organizations that promote the legacy of air, space and cyberspace.

Another important objective of the student Gathering of Eagles team is to commission an original painting, depicting the selected Eagles and their airframe or contribution to the air, space and cyberspace industry.

Renowned aviation artist Jay Ashurst has continued to support the Gathering of Eagles program for many years. His painting is hand-signed by each Eagle and recreated into lithographs sold to help fund the Gathering of Eagles Foundation.

The Gathering of Eagles Foundation is a nonprofit organization that funds Eagle guest travel and the Gathering of Eagles week events. Lithographs for 2012 and previous years are available for purchase at Each year the honored Eagles are presented with a lithograph as a remembrance of the occasion.

For information on the Gathering of Eagles program or lithograph availability, visit the Facebook page at, on the web at, or email the 2012 team at

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