A Hawaii resident is seeking help in Athens as part of her mission to honor fallen soldiers of the Vietnam War.
As reported in the Athens Banner-Herald, Janna Hoehn volunteers for the Wall of Faces, a project collecting photographs of all soldiers whose names are inscribed on the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C.
Of the 48,318 soldiers killed, Hoehn said they are missing the photographs of an estimated 1,078 soldiers, including three from Athens and one from Greensboro.
“I’ve been on this project for eight years. I’ve pulled in over 7,000 photos now and every single one is precious,” she said recently in a telephone interview. “We have done incredibly well, but there is no stopping until we get the last photo.”
There are 1,585 soldiers from Georgia that are recorded on The Wall.
“The number changes about daily, but as of (May 10) we need 92 more photos from Georgia,” Hoehn said.
The soldiers from Athens she is needing photos for are U.S. Army Private Fred L. Thomas, who died Aug. 15, 1966; U.S. Army Private Leroy Mitchell, who died April 18, 1970; and U.S. Army Sgt. Charles B. Carey, who died Oct. 13, 1969.
Up until last week, she was looking for a photo of U.S. Marine Cpl. Jeff Whitehead, who died March 16, 1969, during gunfire in a battle at Quang Nam Province. The Athens Banner-Herald with the help of retired Athens-Clarke policeman Frank Platt was able to get Hoehn his photo.
Hoehn’s mission to find these photos started after Jan Scruggs, the founder and president of the Vietnam Wall, asked if she would help find the photos of 42 soldiers from Maui County in Hawaii, where she has been a resident for 28 years.
After that, she began searching for the photos for soldiers from her native state of California.
“It wasn’t until I started contacting newspapers that I really started getting activity on this project. The newspapers work. Usually family or friends will see the article and they will email me. ... I’m crossing my fingers hoping that might happen in your town,” she said.
Articles have appeared in over 500 newspapers across the country, she said.
“It’s an incredible feeling to know you are part of something of this magnitude; to make sure these young men are never forgotten,” she said. ”... “I was a florist for 44 years. I have done many events, thousands of weddings and I loved my work, but it doesn’t hold a candle about how I feel about this project.”
Volunteers do most of the research and work needed to find the photos.
“It really helps when I’ve got what I call my boots on the ground – people that volunteer to help find those last few photos,” Hoehn said, explaining these volunteers often visit libraries to research obituaries in old newspapers. “Family is what I’m hoping to find. They might have his basic training photo or senior photo.”
To submit a photo or information to Hoehn, contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information on the Wall of Faces, go to www.vvmf.org/thewall.
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A professor in the College of Veterinary Medicine, Holly Sellers is UGA’s 2019 Inventor of the Year and the first woman to receive the distinction since 2001.
As reported in the Athens Banner-Herald, a researcher at the Poultry Diagnostic and Research Center, Sellers’ research has led to 12 invention disclosures and five U.S. patents.
Her technologies were made available to industry partners by way of over 20 license agreements, leading to four commercial poultry vaccines and numerous autogenous vaccines that support and secure Georgia’s $22.9 billion poultry industry.
“The poultry industry has been part of my life for as long as I can remember. I knew early on that I wanted to pursue a career in science that supported this great industry,” Sellers said. “The opportunities at UGA have allowed me to do research on issues that are important to the industry. The diagnostic support provided by PDRC provides the industry with science-based information so it can make informed decisions about the health of its flocks. In the end, we support the industry’s goals of securing a safe, sustainable and quality source of food to feed the world.”
Sellers does clinical and molecular virology research with a focus on viruses that cause respiratory, enteric and musculoskeletal diseases in poultry, dealing with the identification, characterization and control of those viruses. She also directs virology services at the PDRC and mentors graduate and professional students. Sellers got both her master’s and Ph.D. in medical microbiology from the College of Veterinary Medicine and a bachelor’s degree in biology from Stephen F. Austin University.
“Dr. Seller’s accomplishments have truly been remarkable. As head of virology diagnostics at the Poultry Diagnostic and Research Center, she works closely with the poultry industry to improve the health and well-being of poultry across the state and the country,” said Mark Jackwood, the J.R. Glisson Professor of Avian Medicine and head of the department of population health and PDRC. “Her tireless efforts have led to rapid diagnostic tests and innovative vaccines saving the industry millions of dollars year after year. We are very proud of her outstanding achievements.”
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Last Friday the University of Georgia marked the end of another academic year for thousands of new graduates.
As reported in The Athens Banner-Herald, UGA hosted several convocations, receptions and other events all day. At Sanford Stadium, over 5,000 UGA graduates gathered as they listened to the featured speaker, ABC News correspondent Deborah Roberts. There were 5,697 eligible undergraduates to be exact.
On Friday morning, graduate students had their own separate commencement when UGA President Jere Morehead shook hundreds of hands as new Ph.D. and master’s graduates walked across the Stegeman Coliseum stage one by one as their names were called. There were 1,265 new Ph.D. and master’s degree recipients who were eligible to march.
During the Terry College of Business convocation, 10,000 friends and family came to see most of the nearly 2,000 new business school graduates who filed onto the coliseum floor to hear featured speaker John Jackson, a successful banker and one of the first African American men to play football at UGA.
Jackson, whose daughter Jenna was among the graduates, encouraged graduates to go and conquer the world by working hard, believing in themselves, taking risks, embracing failure and leading disciplined lives, he said.
“There is a price to success. It’s never on sale,” said Jackson, who was encouraged to get into banking by the late Dean William Tate, one of Jackson’s professors. “It’s just a matter of deciding how much you want to pay.”
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Audrey Haynes has been a loyal customer at Frontier, buying homemade jewelry and French soaps that she can’t find elsewhere. Haynes, an associate professor at the University of Georgia’s School of Public and International Affairs, has also sold her own artwork including suncatchers made of wire and glass beads and donated her profits to a local animal shelter.
As reported in The Red & Black, after 30 years of offering local gifts to customers, Frontier, located on East Clayton Street in downtown, is closing.
Having opened in 1989, Frontier sells one of a kind merchandise from local artists and independent companies. Although the store does not have an actual date for its last day, owner Devin Clower said they will close sometime in May.
Although Frontier’s physical location will be gone, the store will begin selling online.
Clower, the fourth owner of Frontier, is a UGA alumna who took over the gift shop in 2010. Although she graduated with a degree in interior design, she always had an interest in downtown’s historic structures just off campus.
She has decided to follow the footsteps of the previous owners in finding something different to do.
“It’s been such an enriching experience,” Clower said. “Running a small business is a challenge, and a marriage, and all of the above but in the best kind of way.”
She takes pride in Frontier and all the connections she formed with other local small businesses and artists.
Athens resident Cecile Paige Riker appreciates how local and different all of the items are that Frontier offers, and will also miss being greeted by Clower’s shop dogs.
“We wouldn’t have been doing it if it weren’t for our loyal customers,” Clower said. “It’s a bittersweet transition that hopefully will open up a new opportunity for me.”
Haynes shopped at the gift shop before and after Clower took over, and said Clower made it feel inviting for all customers to come in.
“Everything is so warm and comfortable and just interesting, that’s how the store always felt to me,” Haynes said. “And I can always find something, whatever price point … and they would always gift wrap it to make it extra special.”
Haynes said she will miss Frontier, but she is also worried about what it will mean for the future of small businesses downtown. She is concerned that Frontier leaving is an indicator of less local businesses with more corporate stores moving in on the downtown scene.
“If it becomes all just corporate franchises, it’ll lose a lot of what makes Athens sort of the cool place to hang out,” Haynes said.
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