American Thinker Article

| March 20, 2019


Poetrooper sent us the link to an American Thinker article, and highly recommended posting it. And so..

Lori Loughlin and Peter Zhu

By William F. Marshall

Lori Loughlin, Mossimo Giannulli, Felicity Huffman, Bill McGlashan, Jane Buckingham and all the other rich and famous parents who cheated and bribed their children’s way into elite universities using the services of Rick Singer should understand the story of a young man named Peter Zhu.

Cadet Lieutenant Peter Zhu was a classmate of my son in the West Point Class of 2019. Peter would have been graduating from the United State Military Academy in a little over two months’ time, had he lived. You see, Peter tragically lost his life in a skiing accident on February 28 at the Victor Constant Ski Area on the Academy grounds, as the result of spinal cord injuries.

Peter’s life story reads like that of a young man that any American parent could only dream of raising. Peter was a stand-out cadet. He was in the top two percent of his class and was president of the Cadet Medical Society. He was scheduled to attend medical school at the Uniformed Services University of Health Sciences following graduation and commissioning in May.

In a moving tribute to Peter written by his roommate, Cadet Michael Martinez, that I would encourage everyone to read, Michael describes Peter as “the most hard working, most charismatic, and most humble person I know.” The impact that Peter had on Michael, let alone all the other people that were fortunate enough to have encountered him in his abruptly shortened life, is beautifully articulated in Michael’s homage. Michael discusses how Peter not only helped him in the difficult academic and physical trials that all cadets endure, but how Peter brought him closer to God.

You don’t reach the level of achievement that Peter realized at West Point unless you possess extraordinary qualities. But beyond the academic, athletic and military skills he possessed, Peter’s character was such that Michael was moved to write the following:

He was the type of person that I wish you could have met and have a conversation with, someone who truly valued friendships and relationships, someone who put the needs of others before his own. Pete was in every aspect the model friend, student, leader, and scholar, a person of the highest moral integrity and personal character. Pete was an exemplary role model who, without a doubt, led by example in every aspect of his life.

While the deaths of young people in the prime of their lives is tragic, there is something particularly poignant about the loss of a young person who has dedicated his or her life to the service of something so abstract and noble as the defense of their country and countrymen.

Two and a half years ago, I wrote of the loss of another great American. Thomas Surdyke, another West Point cadet and classmate of my son, lost his life while on vacation on Long Island in the summer between his freshman and sophomore years. He sacrificed his life while saving the life of a fellow beach-goer in the waters off Long Island. With complete disregard for his own safety, Cadet Surdyke dove into the water to rescue a civilian swimmer who had been caught in an undertow. He saved the civilian, but in the process, through his exertions, Tom Surdyke drowned. He is fittingly buried in West Point’s cemetery among his fellow West Pointers. He was posthumously awarded the Soldier’s Medal for his sacrifice.

The Class of 2019 has now lost three cadets in accidents. In addition to Pete and Tom, Cadet Brandon Jackson died in a car accident in September 2016. I don’t know what mortality tables dictate but losing three young people in separate accidents in a class of approximately 1,100 seems unusually high.

The parents involved in the Great College Admissions Cheating Scandal could take a lesson from the members of our service academies and our military generally about selflessness, personal sacrifice, character-building and integrity.

William F. Marshall has been an intelligence analyst and investigator in the government, private, and non-profit sectors for more than 30 years. He is a senior investigator for Judicial Watch, Inc.

The rest of the article may be read HERE: American Thinker
Thanks, Poe.

Category: Guest Link, Schools

Comments (7)

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  1. AnotherPat says:

    In Honor of Cadet Thomas Surdyke and Brandon T. Jackson, both mentioned in the article. They would have graduated this year.

    This Video in their honor may bring a tear to your eye. Please watch.

    Rest In Peace, Cadets. Rest in Peace, Cadet Peter Zhu.

    Salute. Thank You, Poetrooper and Ed for sharing their story.

    • 5th/77th FA says:

      WOW! Got real dusty in here. Might be the smoke from the oak and hickory fire I just checked on.

      Thanks for the post Poe and to you also AnotherPat. Gonna have to start heeding your warnings a little closer.

      What outstanding Officers and Citizens these young men would have become if not taken from us so young.

      Godspeed and Farewell Cadets!

      Hand Salute…Ready…Two!

  2. Jay says:

    Top 2% at West Point (a LEGIT elite school) and had already been accepted to the Uniformed Services University of Health Sciences to be a Doctor. THIS is the best and brightest our nation has to offer. This young man died in Feb, and the first i’m hearing about him is today.

    Meanwhile there are 7-8 stories daily on Yahoo/etc about the Jenner trash. We as a nation have SERIOUSLY skewed our perspective on who we put on a pedestal.

    RIP Cadets Zhu, Surdyke, and Jackson. You undertook a challenge only a very few can even aspire.

  3. Perry Gaskill says:

    I remember being around West Point cadets only once. It was a summer at Ft. Hood when the 1st Cavalry was demonstrating what they were calling “Tri-Cap” which meant the ability to use the triple capability of air cavalry gunships, airmobile infantry, and armor all combined. Part of the demonstration for the cadets also included what it was like to be under tactical air support.

    So a group of us are standing around wondering what’s going to happen next, when this tiny little dot way up in the sky turned into an in-your-face F-4 Phantom. All in about the time it takes to say “fast mover.” The ground shook and the noise was spectacular. One of the coolest things you can imagine. When I looked around, it was as if the cadets all had a Keanu Reeves moment:


    They were an interesting group. Lots of topspin there.

  4. Outcast says:

    AW1 do not know if you have done one that is on the wall, if not would be good Valor read, PFC Dan Bullock.

  5. Eo says:

    I wonder what our society would be like if we spent more time hearing about heroism and genuinely good people like these two Cadets instead of the cesspit that is the entertainment industry.