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GMS Reunion 2020 Canceled

Due to the current state of COVID-19, the GMS 2020 Reunion has been canceled

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GMS Reunion 2020 Canceled
Read our response to COVID-19

Most Recent News

Update on GMS Reunion 2020

 

My fellow alumni,

We are in very unsettling times as the COVID-19 virus runs across our country as well as others throughout the world. In light of this virus and as the President of the Alumni Association Board of Directors it was incumbent upon me and the board to act in the leadership capacity that you elected us to perform. We as the Board of Directors are tasked with looking out for the association and its members.

I have been in contact with others in our association (past presidents, past board members, our current leadership team, and others who have been part of our association for many years) and got their input on a decision the current board felt it must make for the alumni concerning our October 2020 reunion. In light of the current COVID-19 virus outbreak, the average age of our alumni putting us in the “at risk” group, and the unknown time frame for safely traveling throughout the country and gathering in large groups, the following was proposed as your president:

  1. The reunion for the year 2020 be canceled.
  2. A joint 50 year celebration of both the class of 1970 and 1971 be held during next year’s reunion.
  3. A “Virtual” GMSAA Board meeting to be held in the fall to conduct yearly business.

A memo was sent to each of the GMSAA Board members asking them to vote their conscience regarding the three items above.

I asked that a vote to cancel or not be returned to me no later than May 15, 2020 such that the alumni could be informed of that decision as soon as possible. I further stated that a tally of the votes would go to the board no later than COB on the 17th. That tally was sent the 17th from New Mexico to the board showing the board voted 13 to cancel the reunion this year and 1 abstaining. This needed to be done due to the critical time nature of notifying our alumni, and all of the preparations that must occur to hold our reunion each year.

This was a difficult decision, but it was a leadership decision that had to be made and it fell to the elected board to make that decision for the safety of our entire Alumni Association and their families. As one alum stated “ I would love to see everyone this year but I would hate to see everyone this year and a lot fewer next year”. This does not preclude anyone from going back to the 'Brier and if you do I wish you the best but there shall be no formal GMSAA sponsored reunion this year. Be safe and be well and rest assured the alumni association is alive and well and we hope to see you next year.

Respectfully,
Daniel H. Pennington ‘69
GMSAA Board President
GMS Forever

GMS 'Brier Patch' Yearbooks NOW AVAILABLE FOR VIEW!

 

Hello to all GMS Alumni & Friends,

I am happy to announce as of today (May 24th, 2020) that 50 years of GMS yearbooks are now available for FREE VIEW on our website!

I hope many of you find pleasure in viewing these archives of history as I certainly did in the process of optimizing, stabilizing & cropping all 4,289 total pages from a dark microfilm state. Each yearbook has been carefully lightened with level & curve adjustments for easier visibility. As seen in this photo, the PDF reader allows for the PDF to be downloaded if you'd like to keep a copy for yourself. Also, to view the yearbook in full screen, click the "Presentation Mode" button above the reader.

A huge thanks also goes to Mike Ruth '69 and our museum curator, Mary Essig, for making this yearbook project possible!

Ready to check it out? View them under the Cadets dropdown, select "'Brier Patch' Yearbooks!"

Enjoy,

Matt Winans
GMSAA Webmaster

Read James "Deak" Roberts Jr.'s New "Passing in Review" Article

 

Read the Newest and Final Edition of James "Deak" Roberts Jr.'s "Passing in Review" series!

This is a Tribute to Herb Pearis, The Force that brought GMS alumni together and The Glue that held them together for over 30 years. Two years as a Student, 10 years as an Instructor / Counselor, and 30+ years as the GMSAA Secretary, Creator / Editor / Publisher of the Alumni Record, Herb has been an integral element of Greenbrier Military School and its alumni for over 42 years.

Read it all here! gmsaa.org/history/passing_in_review/james_herbert_pearis

August 2019 Alumni Record / 2018 Reunion Photos

 

Head on over to the Alumni Record page to see the newest August 2019 edition, honoring the Class of '69!

Also please feel free to browse photos of the latest 2018 GMS Reunion.

1967-1968 GMS Footage by Roderick C. M. White

 

GMS Cadet Roderick C. M. White recently transferred his home movies to digital format and provided this footage of some Greenbrier Military School (GMS) activities / parades in 1967-1968. He was a 7th-8th grade cadet at the school at the time. Thanks for the upload and share, Roderick!

Most Recent Cadet Obituaries

Wayne Leroy Johnson

1954
 

https://www.bradfordokeefe.com/obituaries/Wayne-Johnson-31/#!/Obituary

Obituary for Wayne Leroy Johnson
Wayne Leroy Johnson, age 84, of Wiggins, Mississippi passed away Saturday, September 26, 2020, at Gulfport Memorial Hospital of Covid-19 health complications. Wayne was born December 08, 1935, in Cumberland, Allegany County, Maryland to the late Elmer Leroy and Gladys Emmart Johnson. He will be greatly missed by his family and many Gulf Coast and Pearisburg, VA friends. Wayne was a generous soul and people were drawn to him. He loved being around and talking with other people.

Wayne was a 1954 graduate of Greenbrier Military School, Lewisburg, WV where he was accomplished on the basketball court and football field as well as being the first trumpet in the band. After graduation he joined the U. S. Air Force as he said, “to see the world.” In 1955 he was assigned to Sculthorpe Air Force Base in England and met Lilian Lister of Manchester, England and they were married in May of 1958. Over his twenty-year career he would go on to be assigned to permanent and temporary duty stations at some 15 U.S. Air Force bases around the world. After retirement Wayne and Lilian moved back to the Mississippi Gulf Coast living in Gulfport and Wiggins. Wayne started a second career as a Harrison County Deputy Sheriff where he worked for 10 years. From there he worked as a bail bondsman in Gulfport, MS.

He loved golfing and watching sports on TV. He participated in many Shrine activities at the Masonic Lodge located in Perkinston, Mississippi where he had obtained his 32nd Degree. He loved reconnecting at reunions at Greenbrier Military School in WV and Pearisburg High School in VA. Wayne was always in possession of the latest electronic devices and assorted gadgets that he would talk about and share with family and friends.
In addition to his parents, he was also preceded in death by his wife of 48 years, Lilian Lister Johnson; son, Gary Michael Johnson; and brother, Robert Charles Johnson. Wayne is survived by brother, Gary William Johnson and wife Sandra of Asheville, NC; sons, Robert Anthony Johnson of Gulfport, MS and Michael Leroy Johnson of Wiggins, MS; grandchildren, Christina and husband Joshua King of Gulfport, MS, Justin Johnson of Gulfport, MS, Joshua Johnson of Gulfport, MS, Alexis Johnson of Wiggins, MS, Zachary Johnson, of Hawaii, Nicholas Johnson of Fort Walton Beach, FL; great grandchildren, Jasmine, Lilyann, and Mason King; numerous nieces and nephews; and a special friend Helen Dale.

Visitation will be Friday, October 2, 2020, at Bradford O’Keefe Funeral Home, O’Neal Road, Gulfport, beginning at 11:00 a.m. The funeral service with Masonic Rites will be at 12 noon in the funeral home chapel. The graveside service with honors by the US Air Force will be at 1:30 p.m. at the Biloxi National Cemetery. Masks must be worn by everyone attending the visitation and funeral service. Attendance at the cemetery is limited to 20 people. Due to the restrictions for flowers at the Biloxi National Cemetery, the family requests memorials to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, P.O. Box 1000, Dept. 142, Memphis, TN 38101-9908.

Bradford O'Keefe Funeral Home is honored to serve the family.

To send flowers or a memorial gift to the family of Wayne Leroy Johnson please visit our Sympathy Store.

William Bentley Carris

1946
 

http://evergreenmemorialpark.com/obituaries/william-bill-bentley-carris/

William “Bill” Bentley Carris

February 24, 1928 - September 21, 2020

William “Bill” Bentley Carris of Lakewood Co, passed away on Monday Sept. 21, 2020 due to kidney cancer, while at the Collier Center, Lutheran Hospice. He was 92 years old. Bill was a 1946 alumnus of Greenbriar Military Academy, in West Virginia. He served in the Army from 1951-54 during the Korean War. In 1960 he Received a BS in Chemistry from Morris Harvey College, now Charleston University, WV. Bill was a Sr. Processing Chemist at ITTRayonier Inc for 18yrs. He loved tropical fish, music, walking, modern electronics/recording and spending time with his family.

He is preceded in death by his wives Marlene Jane Carris (1963-2001) and Eileen Moses Carris (2002-2016).

He is survived by his son Michael and his wife Marschelle, grandchildren MJ, Olivia Carris of Portland, OR. His daughter Cathy Carris, husband David Adams, granddaughters Ericka, Cassandra of Conifer Co. His brother David Carris and 2 nieces and a nephew.

From his wife Eileen 5 step children, 9 step grandchildren, nieces and nephews.

In lieu of flowers, donations in Bill’s name, can be made to one of the following charities:

Relay for Life, Cancer Walk/Run, the one Bill used to participate in yearly.

https://secure.acsevents.org/site/TR/RelayForLife/RFLCY21SER?pg=entry&fr_id=99096

https://www.cancer.org

Christopher Brent Lilly

1972
 

Per WV NEWS and Rex Tennant II

SALEM — Christopher Brent Lilly (GMS Class of 1972) passed away peacefully on April 29, 2020 at Salem Center.
A life-long resident of West Virginia, he was born on July 22, 1953, and grew up in the Huntington/Charleston area.
He graduated from Greenbrier Military School and attended West Virginia University.
He was the son of the late Dr. Donzie Lilly and Mary Catherine Persinger.

He enjoyed fly-fishing and climbing around the state, The Beatles, and taking his husky Stella to the park.
He is survived by his daughter, Kathrine; and wife, Lisa Lilly; and brothers, Donzie “Chip” Lilly, Michael Persinger and Sunny Persinger.
The family would like to thank the nursing staff at Salem Center, River Oaks, and Clarksburg Nursing and Rehab for their care and support.

Justin Boyd Harris

1944
 

Justin Boyd Harris, age 93, passed away on April 5, 2020, in Jacksonville Florida

He grew up in Media Pennsylvania, a suburb of Philadelphia. His early years took him to Lewisburg West Virginia, far from home, for military school. He did not like this, but excelled. After graduation, and as WWII was continuing, he applied to and was accepted into the Navy's V-12 program - he wanted to be a pilot. As the Navy - not Boyd, as he was known to his family and friends - would decide where he would be educated, he spent one semester at U. of Pennsylvania, then one semester at Ursinus College. For sophomore year he was sent to Villanova (at that time still a college), and remained for the next three years. He met the spunky and talented Martha Foster while she was also a college student at West Chester State Teachers College. They were married in between his junior and senior year. While both sets of parents were horrified, believing their kids would never finish college after this, they both went on to graduate, Boyd finishing second in his class.

He began his professional career with Westinghouse Electric, where he found it not to his liking in the first year, quit and sold life insurance. After one year, he decided he did like Westinghouse after all and returned, remaining the next 41 years. His career took him from South Philadelphia to Kansas City to Pittsburgh to Jacksonville and finally ending in San Jose California. He had started out as a mechanical engineer working on gas turbine engines for aircraft, but Westinghouse found his talents better suited to organizing and numbers, and so encouraged him and helped him to become a "systems analyst." All the while with his "entourage" of a wife and child first, then three more children, to make a tribe of six. Believing that Jacksonville would be the best fit for him and his wife, he retired there and spent the final 30 years of his life in the city.

He enjoyed his time with the U.S. Junior Chamber of Commerce, or "Jay Cee's" in the 1950's, traveling once in a caravan to the western states from Philly in his brand new 1954 Ford convertible. In the 1960's, as a devoted family man and wanting his sons to learn useful skills, he became involved first with "Indian Guides," and later the Boy Scouts, rising to the position of District Commissioner for the eastern District of Allegheny County (Pittsburgh). In the mid-60's his community figured it needed a pool. Boyd volunteered to design it, as his father had been an architect, and helped sell "shares" in the pool - memberships which helped raise money to build it - a novel idea at the time.

Boyd was predeceased in life by his loving wife of 56 years, Martha ("Marfy" as she was known to her friends), his son Jeffrey, his brother Nelson and his sister Marguerite.

He is survived by his second wife, Doreen, and three sons, Philip (Son Jeff and granddaughter), Kelly (wife Terri and children Ben and Kimberly), and Andrew (wife Therese and sons Christopher, Nicholas (wife Lexi) and Jonathan), Many thanks go out to Brookdale Senior Living facilities, who cared for Boyd in his final years, the Mayo Clinic Jacksonville, the Right-At-Home Care Company, Community Hospice, and to his second wife Doreen.

Interment to be at Dignity Memorial Oaklawn Cemetery

David Richard Gibbs

1955
 

https://www.tributearchive.com/obituaries/12591956/David-Richard-Gibbs

Obituary

David Richard Gibbs, 82, of Lake Panasoffkee, FL, passed away Thursday, April 2, 2020, in Bushnell, FL. He was born in Sabina, Ohio to Ralph and Catherine (Beller) Gibbs. Richard enjoyed going out to lunch with his bereavement group and watching sports. He was an alumnus of the Greenbrier Military School in Lewisburg, WV. He was preceded in death by his wife, Beverly Elizabeth Gibbs, and his daughter, Mary Catherine Gibbs.

Richard is survived by his grandchildren: Catherine (Nathan) Wilson of Lake Panasoffkee, FL, Vincent Gibbs of Mount Dora, FL, Amanda Tinsley of Leesburg, FL; and brother: James Gibbs of Ridge Manor, FL.