Jorge Franco ’09 writes his first play

Jorge Franco IV ’09 graduated from the prestigious American Academy of Dramatic Arts (“AADA” – New York City campus) in the spring of 2011, with high honors. [AADA is the oldest English-speaking acting conservatory in the world.] At graduation, he was presented AADA’s Award for outstanding voice for theatre by James Lipton of “Inside the Actor’s Studio.” Jorge was then one of only 16 graduates invited into AADA’s exclusive third year “Company” where he performed as the lead in numerous of AADA’s 2011-2012 season of stage productions.

After completing AADA’s Third Year Company, Jorge was signed by a couple of New York’s elite talent agency and management firms who have helped him publish and open his first written play, “Atiya,” and land numerous modeling jobs. As of August 2012, Jorge has moved to the heart of Paris, France where he is enrolled as a transfer-sophomore at the American University of Paris (“AUP”). At AUP, Jorge is pursuing a major in Creative Literature, a minor in International Journalism, studying French and continuing with his writing, modeling and acting abroad.

Jorge’s younger brother is Christian L. Franco, Brophy Class of ’15 and Varsity Tennis (2012 State Champs.)

AZRep: “In the Shadow of Greatness” tells the story of service after 9/11

The following is an Opinion piece submitted to The Arizona Republic by Brophy alumnus Travis Bode ’98.

In 1998, Tom Brokaw honored our grandparents who defended American interests in the deep snow of Europe and turbulent waters of the Pacific. He called them the “Greatest Generation.”

I am devoted to the same principles as the greatest generation. After graduating from Brophy College Preparatory in 1998, I went to the Naval Academy, inspired in part by U.S. Sen. John McCain (Naval Academy Class of 1958), who I had the good fortune of meeting several times.

I knew I might be called to duty, but such a reality was abstract at age 18. But on a September morning 11 years ago, while we walked to class as seniors, our homeland was attacked and it was our time to serve. Just like our grandparents, I had no idea where or for how long.

In a September 2011 interview with Stephen Colbert, Brokaw recounted a comment made to Gen. David Petraeus: “This could be the ‘next greatest generation.’ … I think the people who have been serving in military uniform, who volunteered, raised their hands … have that potential for greatness. They have come back (from war), gone to school, are in jobs, running for state legislature, Congress and the Senate.”

I am a member of a class of 965 people — out of more than 1 million overall — who voluntarily served after 9/11. This generation of Americans responded to a changed world order and were the patriots of our nation’s longest war.

Convinced of the importance of the 9/11 generation’s role, my Naval Academy Class of 2002 wrote a book. Former presidential adviser David Gergen said the book “is written for citizens and others of all stripes. These accounts … fill you with hope that this rising generation, forged in tragedy and war … will help all Americans, both in and out of uniform, unite to rise to the occasion once more.”

“In the Shadow of Greatness” is a collection of vignettes providing tales of leadership and courage from Baghdad; Kandahar, Afghanistan; and beyond. Through the eyes of Navy and Marine junior officers, the reader is placed on the front lines — conducting counterinsurgency, blasting off aircraft carriers, attending Afghan council meetings and providing humanitarian support around the world.

Policy debates on the fruits and accomplishments of war and the losses and setbacks are well above my pay grade. Likewise, the future military deployments and commitments are unclear as the election nears, but to my classmates, that is less important. We will answer the call of service no matter the political party or policies of our president.

This book honors those who served in uniform after 9/11 and those who paid the ultimate sacrifice. All proceeds from book sales through Sept. 15 benefit several veterans groups.

Lt. Commander Travis Bode is a naval intelligence officer and contributor to the book, “In the Shadow of Greatness.”

Courtesy of AZCentral.com

Remembering Nicholas Sowinski ’99

Diane Sowinski, Nicholas’ mother, told the East Valley Tribute, “I think he was very moved by 9/11. He said, ‘I feel like if there are people standing up for our country, I need to be one of them.'”

Photo right: Brett Huneycutt ’99, Josh Whistler ’99, Nick Sowinski ’99, Brian Green ’99

East Valley Tribune article

Special thanks to Brett Huneycutt ’99 for his photo gallery on 1000memories.com