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Although I have the greatest degree of sympathy on Ms. Berger’s loss of her husband in the 9/11 tragedy, I consider it most inappropriate for Villanova to select her as a guest speaker for a commencement. I state this as I am a former military person and there have been many former Villanova graduates who gave their lives to ensure the defense of this country…who have gone unrecognized. To “honor” those whose lives were lost in an unfortunate act of terrorism, doing their every day jobs, is secondary to those who willingly signed up to defend this country…and subsequently periled in that role for ALL of us. If you need guest speakers, there are many Villanova families who have lost their sons and daughters in defense of this country who should be recognized vice your focusing on ONE DAY in which the majority of the public had no role other than being an American citizens.

I think that Villanova, and the entire country, has given too much significance to this ONE DAY…and I am personally appalled. I find it ludicrous that the typical 9/11 family, who suffered a personal loss just by their loved one going to their job, will receive @$1.5M while the typical military family, who’s spouse perished in defense of this nation will receive $200K, if lucky.

I ask Villanova to not again promote the personal impact of those effected by 9/11, but to recognize the contributions of those who truly served in defense of our great country.


Mert DorganA&S, Political Science, 1978Commander, U.S. Navy (retired)