By Attorney Mike Dwyer
Joe and I were roommates at St. Michael’s College in Vermont for three years. When I got to St. Mike’s, Joe was a sophomore, so he graduated a year before me. Joe is from Quincy, his father was a Boston police officer and mine was a Somerville police officer, so we immediately bonded.
We both were political science majors studying International politics so over the three years we would take similar courses together.
He entered the military through ROTC (at the University of Vermont). Between his junior and senior year, he spent at Camp Lejeune going through basic training.
I was at his commissioning ceremony at his graduation, as a 1st Lieutenant in the US Marine Corp.
He fought in the Iraqi War leading a Battalion taking down Bagdad City. That’s where he got the nickname “Fighting Joe” because he was front line commander.
The military sent him to Tufts Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy and he has skyrocketed through the ranks to the position of Four Star General.
He was appoint by Obama to the position of Commander of the NATO forces during the Afghanistan War replacing General David Petraeus and General John Allen after an alleged scandal.
Eventually, he was appointed the top US Marine as Commandant of the Marine Corp back in 2014. In September, he was nominated by President Obama to the top military position of Chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff and was approved by the Senate after confirmation hearings.
Joe was in town on November 13, 2015, to speak at the Boston Semper Fidelis annual luncheon. So we got an opportunity to catch up, I got a chance to see his Dad again and meet his wife and daughter, who were present.
I’m proud of how far he has worked his way through the military, especially since he didn’t graduate from the Naval Academy. When I saw him I told he was along way from the second floor of Joyce Hall (where we lived) at St Mike’s!