Standing in front of the crucible during the West Point Association of Graduates’ ring melt Friday with his grandfather’s ring in hand, Hobart Hewett took the only action that felt right-donating it to be melted down.
The ring had been missing for years, but the Saturday before Thanksgiving while cleaning out his mother’s room he made a startling discovery in the form of a worn ring of gold. Hewett had heard of the ring, but never actually seen it in person with its crest for the U.S. Military Academy’s Class of 1921 engraved on the side.
His grandfather, Maj. Gen. Hobart Hewett, entered the academy during one of the most fraught times in American military history. Although they still used the crest for 1921, he and his classmates graduated two years early in 1919 so they could join the fight in World War I.