Richard Koontz Memorial Lectures

2016 Lecture Schedule

All lectures take place in the Pennsylvania Military Museum's James C. Rosborough theater. Donation requested for attendance.

Massacre de Malmedy 43 0085a 1 The Malmedy Massacre: A Survivor's Recollections

Wednesday, August 3rd, 7:30 p.m.

CPL William Poorman, Bellefonte native and survivor of the WWII Malmedy Massacre on 17 December 1944, will speak of his recollections of that day. In this tragic event, 84 American soldiers of the 285th Field Artillery Observation Battalion were executed after their capture by a German Panzer unit. Retired CAPT Jim Bloom, USN, will provide the background circumstances and outcomes of this sad disaster.


Dong Ha Vietnam Operation HastingsBattle of Dong Ha: South Vietnam

Wednesday, September 7th, 7:30 p.m.

Vincent J. Tedesco, Jr. (Colonel, USA-Ret) will recount his personal experience leading the reaction force of Battery C, 1st Battalion, 44th Air Defense Artillery Division, during the Battle of Dong Ha in South Vietnam on January 24, 1968. Several months later, in May 1968, he was awarded a Silver Star for his leadership during the four-hour long battle, in addition to the Bronze Star and Vietnamese Cross of Gallantry. He remains the honorary Colonel of the 44th Air Defense Artillery Regiment.


V2Sep1949The Development of Modern Rocketry (1900 to 1950s)

Wednesday, October 5th, 7:30 p.m.

Doug Gangler (Commander, USN-Ret), who developed a significant interest in rocketry during visits to sites such as Europe's Peenemuende base of German V-2 rocket development, will discuss the highlights of his research from his published work, The Road to Modern Rocketry. The talk will explain how the modern, long-distance rocket developed, along with associated stories in five countries - Germany, France, the United Kingdom, Russia, and the United States.


Army nurses rescued from Santo Tomas 1945dNurses of Bataan and Corregidor

Wednesday, November 2nd, 7:30 p.m.

Dr. Julie L. Decker, member of Penn State's College of Nursing, will chronicle the honorable service of the Army and Navy nurses from WWII from the doomed battle for the Philippines in 1941 and 1942, to the jungles of Bataan, the Malinta tunnel hospital of Corregidor, and their struggles to survive in a Japanese POW camp. The nurses were named the Battling Belles of Bataan and Corregidor by the media, but to the thousands of wounded GIs, they were simply known as Angels.