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UNG athletics recognizes World War I veterans with Operation Nighthawks of Honor

Operation Nighthawks of Honor
The UNG athletic department kicked off the third annual Operation Nighthawks of Honor initiative Oct. 18 to commemorate UNG graduates who served and died during active duty in World War I.

The University of North Georgia's (UNG) athletic department kicked off the third annual Operation Nighthawks of Honor initiative Oct. 18, as it recognized fallen service members who are former UNG students. 

Each of the university's sports teams was assigned a UNG graduate or former student who was killed in action while serving the country; each team commemorates that service member throughout the season. 

Similar to last year's class of Vietnam veterans, all 13 former UNG students in this year's Operation Nighthawks of Honor class were associated with service in, or died during combat in World War I. 

Earlier, Director of Athletics Lindsay Reeves presented Col. James T. Palmer, UNG Commandant of Cadets, a check for $688 from last year's proceeds. Nighthawk Athletics has donated more than $1,800 to the UNG Boar's Head Brigade Corps of Cadets Endowed Scholarship Fund since the initiative's inception on the 14th anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks.
 
"Operation Nighthawks of Honor is a special initiative that recognizes UNG's rich tradition of military excellence," UNG Director of Athletics Lindsay Reeves said. "Our tight community of Nighthawks greatly respects and appreciates all that armed service members, past and present, sacrifice for our country."

"It is not only an honor to celebrate the military heritage of the University of North Georgia and the alumni that have given the ultimate sacrifice for country, but our interaction and collaboration with the Corps of Cadets are a testament to the cohesive atmosphere here at UNG," said Lee Glenn, associate athletic director, external operations.

The U.S. World War I Centennial Commission was created by an Act of Congress in 2013. The Commission's mission is to plan, develop and execute programs, projects and activities to commemorate the Centennial of World War I. The Commission will use the Centennial as a timely and essential opportunity to educate the country's citizens about the causes, courses and consequences of the war; and to honor the heroism and sacrifice of those Americans who served.

Earlier this year, Operation Nighthawks of Honor was presented one of the NCAA's highest honors when it was awarded the NCAA Award of Excellence at the 2017 NCAA National Convention in Nashville, Tennessee. The award exemplifies positive campus and community engagement events hosted during the previous year; UNG received a trophy, a $1,500 award and a nationally televised basketball game next season.

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