Archive for the ‘Obituaries’ Category

Retired Citadel mascot, General, brought joy to thousands

March 4, 2015
General surrounded by some of his admirers.

General surrounded by some of his admirers.

Dedication of The Citadel Bulldog Memorial planned for March 14


CHARLESTON, SC – The Citadel lost an important member of the family this week.  Retired bulldog mascot, General Thomas Curtis Metsker* passed away in the arms of his caretaker on Feb. 26, late in the evening. He was born June 18, 2003, and was 11 years old.

General served the college faithfully as it’s mascot from 2003 – 2013, with his co-mascot Boo IX by his side. The pair formally retired in the fall of 2013 at a ceremony held during one of the South Carolina Corps of Cadets military dress parades.  At that time, two new bulldogs who had been raised and trained with General almost since their birth, took over the official duties.

“General was a great ambassador for The Citadel whether it was with the cadets, with fans at the hundreds of events he attended in a decade, but also for the organizations for which he helped raise funds,” said Mike Groshon, assistant athletics director for facilities and caretaker of the bulldogs. “And, he was my best friend.”

General lived in a house on campus with Groshon, Boo IX, and the newest mascots General Robert P. Carson (G2) and Boo X.  “Everyone on campus looks forward to seeing them. It’s almost impossible to just walk by and not pet them,” said Logan Hester, Regimental Public Affairs Officer. “Cadets loved watching General being driven around in his personal golf cart and seeing him at games. They are an important part of the culture here.”

The Citadel began using bulldogs that belonged to alumni as the mascots starting as far back as 1928. It wasn’t until the Class of 2003 created the mascot program and raised $1,000 toward the program’s startup that the college actually owned and cared for its mascots full time. A mascot hadn’t actually lived on campus since the 1950’s. Private funds and donations provide sole support for the mascot program and Cadets volunteer to work on the mascot detail.

“Our class recognized the value of the mascots to the morale of the corps as well as the joy they brought to alumni, fans and the Charleston community. The bulldogs are a symbol of strength for The Citadel but they are also gentle, approachable animals,” said Al Buddin, Citadel Class of 2003 and assistant business manager for the colleges Athletics Department. “General is definitely going to be missed.”

Since General joined the college, he, Boo IX and the new mascots have helped raise more than $23,000 for the college and for charities such as the ASPCA and a bulldog rescue organization. The mascots participate in athletic events, parades, and community service events to help raise money for animal rescue organizations.

General was donated by the late Hazel Groshon of James Island, South Carolina. He was the nephew of UGA V, the former mascot for the University of Georgia. General is also related to the line of bulldog representatives for the United State Marine Corps and Mississippi State University.

General will be remembered with a tribute video at this weekend’s baseball and basketball games and a wreath for General was placed by the big bulldog statue at Johnson Hagood Stadium. General’s ashes will be interred along with those of four mascots from the Boo lineage during the dedication of The Citadel Bulldog Memorial. The unveiling of the new memorial had already been planned for 10 a.m. on Saturday, March 14 at the stadium. The parade of bulldogs during the spring football game that will compete in the Beautiful Bulldog Contest will also be dedicated to General.

*Captain Thomas Curtis Metsker graduated from The Citadel in 1961. During the Vietnam War, he was in the battalion that led the first search and destroy mission ever to be conducted using airmobile (helicopter) warfare tactics. Metsker, who was wounded in the shoulder, was shot and killed when he gave up his seat on a helicopter to another soldier who was more seriously wounded.

The Citadel Mascots

Mascot Mike, 1928-1930

Mascot Mike II, 1930-1934

Mascot Duke, 1937-1939

Mascot Sonny Sue, 1939-1946

Mascots Suzie and Jake, 1947-1948

Mascot Joker, 1949-1951

Mascot Plebe, 1952-1956

Mascot Plebe II, 1957

Mascot Plebe III, 1958-1961

Mascot Plebe IV, 1962-1963

Mascot Boo, 1964-1971

Mascot Boo II, 1972-1973

Mascot Boo III, 1974-1975

Mascot Boo IV, 1975

Mascot Colonel Ruff, 1977-1985

Mascots Colonel Ruff and Boo V, 1985-1989

Mascots Colonel Ruff and Patrick, 1990

Mascot Boo VI, 1991-1995

Mascot Boo VII, 1996-2001

Mascot Boo VIII, 2001-2003

Mascots General and Boo IX, 2003 – 2013

Mascots General Robert P. Carson (G2) and Boo X, 2013 – present


Autopsy shows no trauma in death of Columbia attorney

February 5, 2015
Rest In Peace Beau Busch '96 Romeo Company

Rest In Peace Beau Busch ’96 Romeo Company

UPDATE: Body of missing Columbia man found, no foul play suspected

By HARRISON CAHILL The State, Columbia SC
February 4, 2015

COLUMBIA, SC — The Richland County Coroner’s Office released the results of an autopsy conducted on the Columbia-attorney found dead Tuesday afternoon showed no signs of trauma. Coroner Gary Watts issued a release that said they are awaiting the results of microscopic and toxicology testing that will determine how 41-year-old Beau Busch died. Columbia police and investigators said they do not believe there is any foul play connected to Busch’s death.

Investigators began searching for Busch after he was reported missing on Saturday. According to initial reports, he was dropped off by a friend at his South Holly Street residence and did not responded to several text messages and calls from family and friends in the days following. Family and friends became increasingly worried after Busch did not show up for an appointment on Monday in Greenville and was reported to not have his medications with him. Busch worked as an attorney at the Chappell, Smith and Arden law firm based in Columbia since 2002.

According to Mark Chappell, one of the firm’s three founding partners, Busch worked for the firm for more than a decade and it was the only job he had during his professional legal career. “He was an outstanding lawyer,” Chappell said. “He fought very hard for his clients. He was a person of integrity. Beau lived life to the fullest.” According to Busch’s profile on the firm’s website, he graduated from The Citadel in 1996 before attending the University of South Carolina School of Law. He graduated from USC in 2002. Shortly after he graduated, Busch was admitted to the Chappell, Smith and Arden firm where he spent over ten years practicing law.

Busch was a member of several professional organizations such as the Richland County Bar Association, Charleston County Bar Association, the Injured Workers’ Advocates group, the South Carolina Association for Justice and was also a law clerk for the Honorable James C. Williams Jr. Busch also led a very active lifestyle. He just recently returned from a ski trip, according to Chappell, and he also liked to surf in Folly Beach and internationally.

Busch is survived by his mother Jennifer Rash, his father Elloree Mayor Stan Busch and his sister.

William Maxton “Max” Craig

January 20, 2015
Max Craig, Romeo '11 Rest in Peace

Max Craig, Romeo ’11
Rest in Peace

August 22, 1989 – January 18, 2015
Resided in Gastonia, NC

William Maxton “Max” Craig passed away on Sunday, January 18, 2015 at the age of 25. Born in Gaston County, he was the son of Hubert Maxton Craig, III and Emily Craig.

Max was a Manufacturing Manager with American & Efird. He was a member of First Presbyterian Church in Gastonia. A proud graduate of The Citadel where he obtained a degree in Business Administration and Management, Max was a member of Romeo Company. Max loved to hunt and fish and was a Carolina Panthers fan.

Max was preceded in death by his paternal grandfather, Hubert Maxton Craig, Jr.

Max is survived by his parents, Hu and Emily Craig; sister Meredith Lanier Craig and her fiancée, Austin Tindal Rhodes, both of Jacksonville, FL; grandparents, Mrs. Hubert Maxton Craig, Jr. of Stanley and Mr. and Mrs. William Graham Craig of Lake Junaluska.

Family and friends of Max are invited to attend his visitation beginning at 5:00 PM until 8:00 PM Thursday in the Fellowship Hall of the First Presbyterian Church of Gastonia. The funeral service will be held at 1:00 PM Friday from the sanctuary of the First Presbyterian Church of Gastonia with the Rev. Dr. John L. Frye, Jr., Rev. Lauren Sease Vanacore and Pastor John H. Stanley officiating. Burial will follow at Evergreen – A Quiet Place.

Condolences may be sent online to

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be sent to the Citadel Foundation, 171 Moultrie Street, Charleston, SC 29409 or the Wounded Warrior Project, P.O. Box 758517, Topeka, KS 66675.

McLean Funeral Directors of Gastonia is serving the family of Max Craig.

Llewellyn L. (Lew) Jordan , Romeo ’87

January 5, 2015
Rest in Peace Lew Jordan '87, our R Co Brother

Rest in Peace Lew Jordan, Romeo’87

Llewellyn L. Jordan TIMMONSVILLE, S.C. — Funeral service for Mr. Llewellyn Lamay Jordan will be 11 AM Monday January 5, 2015 in the Savannah Grove Baptist Church. Burial will be in the James Memorial Gardens directed by Bacote-Eaddy Funeral Home of Timmonsville. He died Wednesday December 31, 2014.

He was born in Annapolis, MD on October 28, 1964 a son of Rev. Boykin B. and Ruth E. Jordan. Being a military brat he had the opportunity to travel with his family and attend many schools completing his early education. After the retirement of his father the family settled in Effingham, SC. He was a 1982 graduate of South Florence High School. While in high school he participated in the NJROTC, South Florence High School Band and was a member of the String Orchestra. He was also a bus driver.

He was a baptized at Mt. Carmel Baptist Church, where he served in the choir and was a junior usher. In 1997 he became a charter Member of the Living Word Baptist Church and served as a Deacon and the church historian.

He 1982 he enrolled at Claflin University and in 1983 transferred to the Citadel and graduated in 1987 with a Bachelors of Arts Degree. After graduating he fulfilled his lifelong dream of being a public service worker and began work with the Florence Police Department. He retired as a Lieutenant in 2012, after 24 years of service. He was a member of the Riven Rock Masonic Lodge# 60 and a Past Associate of Naomi Chapter #93.

Survivors include: his wife of 23 years, Yasmin M. Jordan; his parents, Rev. Boykin and Ruth Jordan; his siblings, Col. Boykin (Bonita) Jordan, USAF Ret. and Valerie (Keron) Williams; a niece who grew up in their home Aurelia “Shon” (Lance) McCrorey; a sister- in -law, Radine (William) Tate; brother-in-law, Warren (Sherri) James, sister-in- law, Florine James; many nieces, nephews, aunts, cousins and dear friends.A wake service with Masonic Rites will be at 7 PM on Sunday in the Bacote-Eaddy Funeral Home Chapel. The family is receiving friends at 4171 Alligator Road, Timmonsville.

Lt. Col. Brian D. Kerns, Romeo ’92

September 10, 2014

Lt. Col. Brian D. Kerns, professor of military science and commanding officer of Old Dominion University’s Army ROTC unit, died Thursday, Sept. 4 at Sentara Heart Hospital in Norfolk. He was 43.

Kerns, who commanded the ODU Army ROTC since 2011, suffered a heart attack shortly after completing personal training with his cadets on August 27. Kerns is survived by his wife Lisa and son Ethan, 3.

“Brian was the epitome of an Army officer,” said RADM (ret.) David Architzel, Old Dominion University Director of Military Affairs. “He cared deeply for all those who served under him and would do anything for them. Most importantly, he was a loving husband and father to Lisa and Ethan. Our thoughts and prayers are with his entire Army family tonight.”

Kerns’ military career began in August, 1992, when he was commissioned as a second lieutenant from The Citadel.

A native of Virginia, Kerns earned a bachelor’s degree in Civil Engineering from The Citadel, and a master’s degree in military history from the Command and General Staff College, Fort Leavenworth, Kan. His Army schools included the Armor Basic Course, Dismounted Armored Scout Course, Scout Platoon Leaders Course, Infantry Captain’s Career Course and the Command and General Staff College.

His active duty assignments included Anti-Armor Platoon Leader, Scout Platoon Leader, Troop Executive Officer and Assistant Squadron S3, 1st Squadron, 2d Armored Cavalry Regiment at Fort Polk, La.; assistant Operations Officer, HQ, 3d Infantry Division; Battalion Maintenance Officer and Tank Company Commander, 1st BN, 64th Armor Regiment at Fort Stewart, Ga.; Cavalry Team Chief and Trainer, 48th Infantry Brigade, Macon, Ga.; Squadron Operations Officer and Executive Officer, 1st Squadron, 89th Cavalry Regiment; and Chief of Operations and Brigade Executive Officer, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain at Fort Drum, N.Y.

Throughout his military career, Kerns served in increasingly challenging assignments in support of Army operations, including Operation Uphold Democracy, Operation Desert Thunder, SFOR Bosnia and Operation Iraqi Freedom. His military awards included the Bronze Star with Oak Leaf Cluster, the Meritorious Service Medal with three Oak Leaf Clusters and the Combat Action Badge.

Funeral arrangements are pending. In addition, a memorial service will be held on campus, and details will be announced at a future date. In recognition of Kerns’s service and sacrifice, all ODU flags on all campuses will be lowered to half-staff through Thursday, Sept. 9.

Richard E. Black III, ’79

June 23, 2014

Romeo Company Taps

Richard “Rick” Eugene Black, III, 58, of Mount Pleasant, South Carolina, husband of Edy R. Norris Black entered into eternal rest Wednesday, June 18, 2014. His Funeral Service will be held Saturday, June 21, 2014 at 12 Noon in J. HENRY STUHR INC., MOUNT PLEASANT CHAPEL 1494 Mathis Ferry Road. The family will receive friends in Stuhr’s Mt. Pleasant Chapel Friday from 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm. Richard was born April 30, 1956 in Fort Knox, Kentucky, son of Martha Joyce Escontres Black Gentry and the late LTC. (Ret) Richard Eugene Black, Jr . He was a graduate of the University of South Carolina and also attended the Citadel. Rick was a Sales Associate with Brooks Brothers Clothing Store. He is survived by his wife, Edy R. Norris Black of Palm Beach Gardens, FL; step-mother Inez Black of Columbia, SC; step-father Alan Gentry of Mt. Pleasant, SC; sister, Melissa Black of Mt. Pleasant, SC; brother, Randy Black and his wife Lee and two nieces, Taylor and Hannah of Gastonia, NC. Flowers will be accepted or memorials may be made to Hebron Colony Ministries, Inc, 356 Old Turnpike Road, Boone NC 28607. A memorial message may be sent to the family by visiting our website at Visit our guestbook at charleston –