Also In This Issue



Editor’s Note: In the spring 2017 One Voice article, Frances Hodapp ’18 was incorrectly identified as the recipient of the Shawn Mohr Passion for Nursing Scholarship. Although Frances qualified for the Mohr Scholarship and appreciates Shawn’s story and the generosity behind the memorial scholarship, she is actually the recipient of the Erle and Alice Nye Endowed Scholarship. The College of Nursing sincerely apologizes for the error.

Cotton-Picking Aggies

James “Jim” Earle ’54 was one of my first professors at Texas A&M, and I recall fondly his Cadet Slouch cartoons. Professor Earle actually helped me out once by creating a special cartoon for a Valentine’s Day fundraiser for the agricultural economics club. After I approached him, it did not take him long to come up with: “Happy Valentine’s Day from a cotton-picking Aggie!” It pictured Cadet Slouch holding a bundle of cotton bolls. It was right after the Aggies had won the 1968 Cotton Bowl versus Alabama (20-16). We sold out every one of those cards and made some bucks for our club. What a guy!

Jimmy Mudd ’69
Yoakum, Texas

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We always enjoy receiving our readers' reactions to Spirit. If the magazine's content moves you to write, please email us at or submit a letter to the editor.

Chance Encounter

Marvin Aly '55, a member of Company B/Combat Engineers in the Corps of Cadets, tried his own hand at cartooning. 

I enjoyed the spring 2017 edition of Spirit, especially the new graphics and a couple of articles that brought back memories. Tessies (Texas State College for Women at Denton) were still arriving at College Station on the Sunbeam for football weekends in the '50s when I was there. One Sunday, while on a Corps trip to Dallas, a carload of us traveled to Denton for a Tessieland visit. I vaguely knew a girl from my hometown and contacted her. Without much ado, she got us all dates. We had an enjoyable afternoon around Denton, ending all too soon because we had to get back to College Station (not on the Sunbeam).

I also clearly recall Cadet Slouch, who first appeared in The Battalion when I was at Texas A&M. I enjoyed remembering his humorous antics and pronouncements. Earle’s cartoons remind me of cartoon drawings sketched by one of my classmates, Marvin Aly ’55, in our company (Company B, Combat Engineers).

Finally, the mention of Dr. James “Red” Duke ’50 reminded me of a happenstance in 1959. After I got out of the Army, I looked for work in Dallas. I stopped at a cafe to get a cup of coffee and to read the newspaper classifieds. A guy came in, sat next to me at the counter and asked me what class I was in. I immediately knew he saw my Aggie ring. He said he was an Aggie, gave me some encouraging words and left, going over to the nearby Parkland Memorial Hospital. Later, I realized he was Dr. Red Duke, the acclaimed trauma surgeon who initially treated President John F. Kennedy and was credited with saving the life of Texas Gov. John Connally from assassin Lee Harvey Oswald’s bullets.

We both came to Houston later, and he was on TV a lot. He also founded Life Flight operations in 1976 at Houston’s Memorial Hermann Hospital, where he was medical director for trauma and emergency services until shortly before his death. 

Dick Randall ’54
Houston, Texas
One of Jim Earle's most famous cartoons was this 1960 joke about the Aggies' football performance. Prior to playing Baylor that season, the Aggies had tied Texas Tech and TCU.

Air Force Love

Thanks for your article on Jim Earle ’54 and Cadet Slouch. I have a story about Jim that I would like to tell. I started college at the University of Southern Mississippi in 1953. After two years, I joined the Air Force and was sent to basic training in San Antonio. After 13 weeks, I received my first assignment at the Abilene Air Force Base (now Dyess Air Force Base).

My very first boss was none other than Lt. Jim Earle. I sat in a desk close to his office and drawing table, where he was worked on his cartoons. I was stationed at Dyess for almost 15 months before being reassigned to Tokyo International Airport. I came to Texas A&M after my stint in the Air Force at the insistence of my brother-in-law.

During my stay in Abilene, I became close to a few ladies who were school teachers. At some point, Theresa (who would become Jim’s wife) was introduced to him. I was discharged in March 1959 and entered Texas A&M as a sophomore that fall. During my time in College Station, I visited with Theresa and Jim at their home quite a few times. 

Louis Piazza ’61
Irvine, California

Another Cadet Slouch cartoon jokes about campus laundry service.

“The” Texas A&M Aggie

As I opened the spring 2017 issue of Spirit, right before my eyes was Slouch! Man, he was “me” at Texas A&M. He was “the” Texas A&M Aggie. I also enjoyed the letter about Texas State College for Women girls who visited the Texas A&M campus, which reminded me that my wife Joyce and I used to rent out two bedrooms in our postwar three-bedroom, one-bath house to girls visiting Texas A&M or to students attending special classes. Joyce and I enjoyed it all very much, and always supplied everyone breakfast the next morning at no extra cost.

The article about Galveston’s new Academic Complex also struck a chord. I was an industrial engineering major at Texas A&M, but I took an elective course in oceanography. I fell deeply in love with the subject, but unfortunately it was much too late to change my major.

Never have I received a Spirit with such a connection to my heart!

Fletcher Pool ’57
Ordway, Colorado
Thanks for the update on my favorite cartoon. Brought back old memories of yesteryear!
Douglas “D.G.” Symmank ’54 
Bryan, Texas
Thanks for the article on Cadet Slouch in the spring 2017 issue of Spirit. I have a few of Earle’s books and just treasure them! Very good work on the article. Gig ’em! 
Mike Chance ’09
Roanoke, Texas
The Cadet Slouch article brought back many good memories. I was fortunate enough to know Jim Earle at the time.
James Carter ’63
Bryan, Texas
I worked on The Battalion in the mid-1960s. The staff would ask each day when they came in the door—ready to put out the next day’s paper—what did Slouch have to say about....(whatever the hot topic of the day was). His musings always made the editorial page!
Michael Reynolds ’66
Fort Worth, Texas

Dunae Reader '15

Assistant Director of Marketing & Communications/Spirit Editor/Maroon Co-Editor