The Virginia Tech Corps of Cadets will conduct a Pylon Dedication Ceremony at 3 p.m. Friday, April 9 at the War Memorial. The engraving of one additional veterans' name, Capt. David Seth Mitchell, U.S. Marine Corps, on the "Ut Prosim" pylon will be dedicated.

Mitchell’s family will be guests and all university employees, alumni, friends, and veterans are encouraged and welcome to attend.

Mitchell, a 2001 graduate of the Virginia Tech Corps of Cadets, was killed on Oct. 26, 2009, while supporting combat operations in Helmand Province, Afghanistan. He was stationed at Camp Pendleton, Calif., and was an AH-1 Super Cobra helicopter gunship pilot and a member of Marine Light Attack Squadron-367. He was 30 years old.

Mitchell is the fourth member of the Virginia Tech Corps of Cadets Class of 2001 lost since graduation and the eighth Hokie to be lost on operations since Sept. 11. He was laid to rest in Arlington National Cemetery on Nov. 6.

Mitchell was from Loveland, Ohio, and graduated from Loveland High School in 1997. When he entered the corps, Mitchell was a member of Echo Company and then rose to become the Executive Officer of Golf Company during his senior year. He earned a degree in English from the College of Arts and Sciences and a minor in leadership studies. Mitchell was a member of the German Club and Ring Design Committee as well as the male member-at-large for the Class of 2001.

Upon graduation, Mitchell was assigned to Camp Lejuene, N.C., and served tours in Okinawa, Haiti, and Iraq as part of an infantry unit. He had dreamed of becoming a pilot, but poor eyesight left him unqualified for the military aviation program. After corrective eye surgery, he earned his private pilot's license and a Marine aviation training spot. He received his wings in May 2007 and later qualified to fly the AH-1 Super Cobra helicopter.

The Pylons are a representation of Virginia Tech’s values. The values engraved on the eight pylons are, from left to right: Brotherhood, Honor, Leadership, Sacrifice, Service, Loyalty, Duty, and Ut Prosim (That I May Serve).

The Pylons are etched with the names of every Virginia Tech student and graduate who has died defending our nation’s freedom beginning with those lost during World War I. At the War Memorial’s center, the cenotaph displays the names of Virginia Tech’s seven Congressional Medal of Honor recipients.

Virginia Tech has now lost eight former students who were killed during operations after Sept. 11. Our fallen and the dates of their deaths are

  • Virginia Tech Corps of Cadets Class of 2001 alumnus 2nd Lt. Jeffrey J. Kaylor, U.S. Army, April 2003;
  • Virginia Tech Corps of Cadets Class of 2001 alumnus 1st Lt. Timothy E. Price, U.S. Army, September 2004;
  • Virginia Tech Class of 2006 member Spc. Nicholas C. Mason, U.S. Army, December 2004 while on a military leave of absence from the university;
  • Virginia Tech Class of 1995 member Staff Sgt. Nathaniel J. Nyren, U.S. Army, December 2004;
  • Virginia Tech Class of 2002 alumnus Cpl. Christopher L. Weaver, U.S. Marine Corps, January 2005;
  • Virginia Tech Corps of Cadets Class of 2001 alumnus Lt. Nick Brantley, U.S. Navy, September 2005; and
  • Virginia Tech Class of 2003 alumnus Staff Sgt. Jesse Clowers, U.S. Army, August 2007.

Free parking is available in Perry Street Lot 1, 3, 4, and 6 near Prices Fork Road with a visitor’s pass. Parking is also available in the Squires Lot, located at the corner of College Avenue and Otey Street, or the Shultz Hall Lot, located off Alumni Drive near the North Main Street campus entrance with a visitor’s pass. Parking meters within the Squires Lot will need to be paid. A visitor’s pass may be obtained Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Visitor Information Center, located on Southgate Drive. Find more parking information online or call (540) 231-3200.

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