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The Official Newsletter of the West Point Parents Club of Mississippi
Volume 2003 • Issue 1 January / February
••• Guest Authors •••


Some Thoughts by Milton Waldoff, President

New or Prospective Cadet and Parent Link

Editorial by Douglas Belk, Ph.D., Webmaster & President-elect

Guest Author (Jere Forbus' moving article"Upon Fields of Friendly Strife ..." about the state of Army football)

Cadet Perspective (Interesting indeed!)

Cadet Features (Birthdays, Recognitions, etc.)

Special Points of Interest


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Thomas Paul Gower
| Paul H. Waldoff

A Cadet's Unique Perspective...
by Thomas Paul Gower

Editor's Preface: Thomas Paul Gower's dad saw that we were searching for items related to the Cadet experience at West Point, in any capacity. He kindly invited Paul to send me an explanation of what he does for the West Point football team. It certainly does lend a unique perspective to this newsletter and to those of us who take the shots at football games for granted.. Many thanks to Paul for his extra effort in making our newsletter even better!

I started filming in high school. I filmed football my 10th and 11th grade year. I also filmed baseball my 10th grade year. During Beast we had mass athletics. It was during this time I went to the stadium and asked to be a manager. At that point they asked if I had any filming experience. I told them yes and I got a job filming.

I am now on the video support staff for the team. What does that mean? That means that I video each practice and game. During practice there are three cameras. Two are on the sideline and one in the end zone. I shoot from the end zone camera. We video special teams (e.g., punts, kickoffs), one on one drills, and team drills. The tapes are sent to the coaches so that they can watch and see who is doing what and what needs to be improved. The team sees the tapes at lunch. The team goes to lunch from 1140-1200, and then at 1200 when the corps comes in to the mess hall they go to top of Washington Hall to classrooms and watch the tape of practice.

On game day: The night before the game I stay with the team and set up meeting rooms so they can watch film of the other teams. Then, I go to the stadium with the team. When the other film guy and I arrive at the stadium (only two of us for game day), we will meet up with the film guy from the opposing team. He will show us where to set our cameras up. After setting up our camera, we then we go to the press box and get something to eat. At 30 minutes before game time, I will go back to my end zone camera and make final preparation for the game. I film the entire game, every play. Our tapes are sent to the coaches, Conference USA officials, NFL, CBS, as well as other teams so they can do scouting reports.

I film from up high in the end zone Above is a picture from where I filmed at when we played Rutgers. The red arrow indicates my position at Rutger's stadium. In the Superdome I was higher; I was basically in the rafters. At East Carolina, I was directly under the end zone score board. At Michie stadium, I was filming from the north bleachers for most of the year until Air Force. During the Air Force game, I filmed from the Kimsey Athletic Center which is still under construction. That pretty much sums up everything I do.

Editor's Note: While the articles we print do not necessarily reflect the views or endorsements of any or all of the WPPC-MS members and this newsletter, we do appreciate their contributions. We do welcome others who wish to contribute to our newsletter. If you so choose, please send an e-mail to the newsletter editor with your name, full mailing address, telephone number, and attach your article in Word, RTF, WordPerfect, or simple text format to the e-mail. Please do take further note that articles or stories that detract from the mission of the academy will not be published, under any circumstances.

Cuts to Hurt?
by Paul H. Waldoff

I've just learned that the government is cutting the Department of Logistics (DOL) by 20%!

What this means is that if the department cannot find a civilian contractor to bid on them and say they can work with that kind of cut, they will have to cut many of the services that cadets need.

I learned this while sitting in the barber shop this morning. I had to wait almost half an hour for a haircut. At one time, I've waited over an hour. If this cut goes though, I may end up having to wait over two and a half to three hours for a haircut each week. There are other issues as well, with Cadet Supply, The Cadet Mess, and many other parts of the logistics department. The issue is that without the services that this department provides, the corps just cannot run.

My haircuts are taken out of my pay every month at the rate of one haircut a week. I know that if the barbershop does get cut, I will have to go elsewhere to get a haircut because I won't be able to get my hair cut within the restrains of my classes. I just won't have the time. This will cost me extra money.

I know a haircut is not the most important things to be worrying about, but this is just the small tip of the iceberg that sank the Titanic. DOL has many other small organizations that work within its sphere of control. If it gets cut, many agencies that operate West Point will get cut severely. They shouldn't cut DOL on the posts in the country because it would cause the military posts to run very poorly and inefficiently. Hopefully, then maybe the government will find something else to cut.

I understand that it's a difficult thing to think about, and that there are probably many factors that decide what gets cut and what does not. I just don't see why a branch of the army that supplies, arms, and takes care of the army should get cut. They are our support and without them, we would not be able to operate. That is the bottom line. Without the people that supply our food and water, our ammunition and weapons, our communication and transportation, our pens and paper, and even our haircuts, we would not be able to carry out our mission.

I just hope you all can help us. Please inform your Congressman of any concern you may have about this possible cut.

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