Wednesday, January 20, 2010

General George W. Casey, Jr. Georgetown University Graduate

Gen. George W. Casey (F’70), chief of staff of the U.S. Army, stood at the podium at Gaston Hall this past May, surveying the 26 Georgetown ROTC cadets about to be commissioned as second lieutenants and the several hundred family members and friends in attendance.

Although Casey is a frequent speaker at ROTC events, the Georgetown one evoked in him a particular déjà vu, reminding the four-star general of his own commissioning ceremony in Gaston 39 years ago.

Casey is a regular visitor to the Georgetown campus. In May, he spoke not only at the ROTC commissioning but also at a Hoya football banquet and a Walsh School of Foreign Service event. The month before, he had been the special guest at a John Carroll Weekend tribute in New York for Georgetown alumni who had served in the military. He says the frequent engagements are in part because he lives and works just across the river – his Pentagon office has a view of the spires of his alma mater – but also that “it ’s fun to stay connected and come back.”

The son of Maj. Gen. George W. Casey (G’60) was born in Japan and lived in Germany and Italy when he was in high school, but his father also was stationed at the Pentagon for periods of his youth. He remembers going to a Hoyas basketball game at McDonough Gym when he was in fifth or sixth grade – and being “captivated by the spirit.” That heady first impression, combined with a love of history and an interest in foreign policy, led him to apply to the Walsh School of Foreign Service in 1966.

While at Georgetown, Casey played club football and rugby.

“I very much believe in the ‘whole person’ concept,” he said. “And that ’s one
of the things you get here in Georgetown.”

Casey refers to the Jesuit tradition of cura personalis, which promotes individualized attention to the needs of others, distinct respect for individuals’ unique circumstances and concerns, and an appropriate appreciation of each person’s particular gifts and insights. St. Ignatius, founder of the Society of Jesus, also believed in the development of the spiritual, intellectual, artistic, social and physical aspects of each person.

At Georgetown, Casey definitely got his share of all of these, including that
physical aspect.

In an April 2009 interview with Hoya Saxa magazine, Casey remembered legendary Georgetown football coach Maurice “Mush” Dubofsky (C’32) as a “ Vince Lombardi-like coach.” Dubofsky was a Georgetown Hall of Fame lineman, an assistant coach during the Jack Hagerty years and head coach from 1968 until his death in 1969.

Casey worked for Lombardi one summer when the latter was coach of the Washington Redskins for a short time.

Link (here) to the full article.

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