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Stephen "Steve" Gladish





       6th Weather Squadron (Mobile) 1963 - 1964







A recent photo of Beautiful Betsy & me in Williamsburg, VA.

A recent photo of Patrick Henry and me in Williamsburg, VA.

          The actor playing Patrick Henry has been playing and studying him for seven years: he can answer any question in his Q. and A. Sessions. Here’s the reason why I included him: Patrick Henry is symbolic of the inspiration of DR. SIG SYNNESTVEDT with his subjects of American Literature, History, and Speech. Sig proved to be the most dynamic influence upon me during High School and then Junior College.

   In my maturing years throughout adulthood, Sig Synnestvedt, Richard Gladish, Emilie Asplundh, and Charlie Cole were the staunchest mentors and most enthusiastic supporters in my chosen career as Author-Educator. These four teachers demonstrated what makes Bryn Athyn Academy and Bryn Athyn College unique and priceless—teachers who show a life-long interest in their students. Ralph Waldo Emerson encouraged all Americans to pass along to others any good deeds done to us, so I have followed in the Academy tradition by focusing on uses, leaving written legacies, and showing a life-long interest in my students as well.

 A summary of the last fifty years follow: I am a fiction and non-fiction writer and teacher of writing at Pima Community College in Arizona. I worked as a teacher and career counselor in the Ohio and Arizona Department of Corrections’ Education Programs for twenty years, forming the inspiration for the prison anthology, co-edited with Robert Yehling, entitled Freedom of Vision: Voices from Behind Prison Walls.  Published in May, 2007, it’s getting rave reviews and sales are brisk. I have written a book on education and numerous literary essays based upon my lifelong love of the teachings of mystical masters such as Emanuel Swedenborg, Wilson Van Dusen, and on a far lesser scale, Henry David Thoreau. One of two state finalists for the Arizona Correctional Education Association’s Distinguished Lifetime Achievement Award in 1999, I have seen many inmates achieve academic and literary successes far beyond the public’s ability to conceptualize.

        Now, I set about bringing my own visions to life: A novel, Moonlight, Missiles, and Moana, drawn in part from my own experiences in the Samoan Islands, was published in summer of 2005. I came of age in a proud family tradition of serving one’s country: a Marine in WWI, my father became a Lieutenant Commander in the U.S. Navy during WWII, serving in the far Pacific. I served from 1959-1963 in the USAF, following my father’s footsteps, predominantly with the fabled 6th Weather Squadron (Mobile). During my stint, I spent many months in American Samoa, Nevada, and all over Tornado Alley. I took special interest in the people, the natural surroundings, and their spiritual and metaphysical components wherever I was stationed.

        A lifelong follower of eminent scientist, mystic, and revelator Emanuel Swedenborg, and graduate of The Academy Boys’ School, I returned from the Air Force to become a Junior College Honors Graduate of Bryn Athyn College in Pennsylvania. As a student of American History and Literature, including History and Literature of the American Indian, I earned my B.A. in English Literature with Honors at the University of Illinois, and my M.A. in American Literature at Northwestern University. I began my academic career in 1967 as a College and University Writing Faculty at Elgin Community College and then taught and developed new programs at Northern Arizona University. I earned an M. Ed in Counseling and Guidance at the University of Arizona, and began twenty years teaching and counseling in the Ohio and Arizona state penitentiaries, beginning with Urbana University in Ohio, which was founded by Swedenborgians.

        Now retired from the University and Prison System, I continue to teach writing half-time at Pima Community College. I am working to establish a web presence in order to market my trilogy of Young Adult Inspirational Fiction, with  titles including Mustang Fever: Run Free with Wild Mustangs just released, and the future Tornado Alley: Chasing Twisters Across America, due out the summer of 2008. Along with thirty-five other veterans from the Society of Southwestern Authors here in Tucson, Arizona, I published a collection of short stories about veterans from the Revolutionary Times up until the present. Duty, Honor, and Valor came out of Veteran’s Day, 2006. I have outlines for additional books of adventure, romance, and inspiration.

        Happily married to my college sweetheart, Beautiful Betsy, for forty years and counting, I am the proud father of two daughters—with full families and careers living here in Tucson, Arizona—and two adventurous sons, both First Lieutenants currently distinguishing themselves on active duty in the U. S. Army. Lt. Stephen Gladish II is deployed for a year as a combat pilot of the Apache Longbow Attack Helicopter in Afghanistan, returning in February, 2008. Lt. David Gladish earned a Joint Force Commendation Medal in a spring 2006 deployment. Currently, BW Betsy and I have six grandchildren; when the sons get married, imagine the activities of those grandchildren: so we go to Desert Fitness during the week, and we hike a new trail every Friday morning, just like Frank and Louise Rose. We love being out in nature, we love the desert climate and the sunshine, and we love to travel. However, we miss the great companionship of all former military and academic classmates, and often wish we lived nearer to you.

Stephen B. Gladish , Author - Educator, www.stephenbgladish.com

follow your heart... live your adventure.

Go to: www.stephenbgladish.com/test. for the soon to be updated website.

Stephen and son Stephen at 2009 Reunion


**EXCERPTS OF PRESS RELEASE (Major Paul Aguirre, Public Affairs Officer, Arizona National Guard.)  



                                  (Stephen Gladish, Sr.)

 Arizona National Guard Honors Hero Aviators

  Arizona’s Citizen-Soldiers Recognized During Safety Day

                  Taking a day off from Arizona Mountain Camp, Steve and Betsy Gladish, along with daughters Dawn Graffam, Reeve Platt, and family friend, Gauri Pathak travelled up to Phoenix on Saturday, June 27, 2009.  Along with more than 200 Soldiers they witnessed the awarding of the Distinguished Flying Cross, Legion of Merit, and Air Medal with “V” device as part of the annual Safety Day for Arizona Army National Guard aviation units held at the Joint Forces Headquarters at Papago Park Military Reservation. Betsy and Steve Sr. were invited up on the stage to get an official photo taken with General Salazar and Steve Jr.

The ceremony recognized the medal recipients and began at 1 p.m. with The Adjutant General, Army Maj. Gen. Hugo E. Salazar presenting Distinguished Flying Cross medals to Capt. Stephen G. Gladish II and Capt. Larry A. Staley; the Air Medal with “V” device to Chief Warrant Officer 2 Gregory F. Wahlmeier; and the Legion of Merit to Chief Warrant Officer 5 Bradley D. Rinehart and Chief Warrant Officer 4 Kenneth L. Swaithes.

         The citations for Gladish, Staley, and Wahlmeier respectively are for “extraordinary achievement”, “heroism”, and “valorous achievement”, all of which occurred on May 30, 2007, in Afghanistan while flying Apache Longbow Helicopters engaged in aerial combat in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. The Distinguished Flying Cross is awarded to any person who . . . distinguishes himself/herself by heroism or extraordinary achievement while participating in aerial flight. The performance of the act of heroism must be evidenced by voluntary action above and beyond the call of duty.

The extraordinary achievement must have resulted in an accomplishment so exceptional and outstanding as to clearly set the individual apart from his/her comrades or from other persons in similar circumstances. Awards will be made only to recognize single acts of heroism or extraordinary achievement. There were eighteen pages of documented reports from air and ground commanders citing specific actions taken especially by Captain Gladish, along with Captain Staley, and Chief Warrant Officer 2 Wahlmeier in the face of relentless enemy surface to air fire—including multiple Rocket Propelled Grenade attacks, three Surface to Air Missiles, and hundreds of rounds of small arms fire—at a level and concentration unprecedented during Gladish’s close ground support and overwatch as an Apache Attack Helicopter Co-Pilot and Gunner.

Gladish provided accurate pictures of enemy movements to our ground troops—including an Army Scout Platoon and two Special Forces Scorpion Elements 25 and 26, while he engaged the enemy with precise air attacks using lethal bursts from his 30 millimeter cannon and numerous rocket pods. Gladish’s continuous actions spoiled the advantage of Taliban number superiority, halted their advance, and stalled their attack. This saved the lives of numerous paratroopers and Special Forces caught in multiple ambushes by overwhelming numbers of enemy Taliban, and most important, led to the recovery of the fallen crew of a Chinook Helicopter, saving their families the agony of viewing their loved ones suffering the final humiliation of enemy brutality. Running low on ammunition and fuel, Gladish refused to abandon the ground elements, and remained on station for hours until relieved by two sister Apache 64-D’s launched from Task Force Corsair at Kandahar Airfield.

 Many Army officers who knew Steve Jr. or who knew the unique value of the DFC award came up to the Gladish family after the ceremony and congratulated them. Still mourning the loss of his five Chinook fellow friends and pilots, Steve Jr. insisted all along he was only doing his job.

….To all the parents and all the children who attend Arizona Mountain Camp, every morning when you look in the mirror, think that “With God, All Things Are Possible.” As Rev. Frank Rose used to say, “Miracles happen—but only to believers.” Remember that Steve Gladish Jr. first came to AMC in 1985 when he was only seven, and under Rev. Frank Rose’s inspired leadership, Steve returned to AMC for eleven years--with all its programs for physical, social, and spiritual success. He graduated from High School in 1996 and Frank Rose was there. In the next eleven years, he became an ROTC Cadet, an Army Combat Diver, a University of Arizona college graduate, a commissioned Army officer, and an Apache Attack Helicopter Pilot. He returned from 13 months of combat deployment in Afghanistan with an armful of awards, medals, and ribbons, including the Air Medal.  Two years after his heroism in May of 2007, he was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross…And it all started when he was seven at Arizona Mountain Camp. 

Stephen Gladish, Sr.



• Up • Robert Bongiovanni • Carle Clarke • Stephen Gladish • Gerald Guay • Ted Lungwitz • Gordon & Barb McCann • Dave Weiner • "Tex" Winder • Robert Dawson •

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