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      Commonwealth Law News

      Fallen Alumnus Honored At Veterans Day Ceremony; Scholarship Named In His Honor

      Capt. Shane Mahaffee, '94

      Capt. Shane Mahaffee, a 1994 alumnus who was killed in Iraq, was recently honored with a scholarship dedicated during the Commonwealth Law Veterans Day ceremony.

      Shane R. M. Mahaffee Scholarship for Excellence

      Capt. Shane Mahaffee gave the ultimate sacrifice to his country, but his memory will forever live on.

      On Veterans Day, the 1994 alumnus was honored at Widener Law Commonwealth when the Shane R. M. Mahaffee Scholarship for Excellence was dedicated in his name.

      The scholarship was made possible by a donation from Widener University Trustee Vito Verne. The first recipient of the scholarship is James Nixon, a first-year law student and Army veteran. The scholarship is designed to assist a deserving law student who has served or who is currently serving in the military.

      Capt. Mahaffee's family, including his wife, Jennifer, and their two children, attended the ceremony. Also in attendance were Shane's parents and his sister and brother-in-law with their children.

      "Shane was the real deal," said his brother-in-law Texas Supreme Court Justice Don Willett. "He embodied heroism that is out of sight. He loved life and loved being in the thick of it, and he lived it full throttle."

      Gen. Carl E. Mundy, Jr., USMC (Ret.) and Linda Sloan Mundy Marine Scholarship

      The Gen. Carl E. Mundy, Jr., USMC (Ret.) and Linda Sloan Mundy Marine Scholarship was also announced at the ceremony. The scholarship is made possible by a generous donation from Widener University Trustee Tom Bown, '67, and his wife, Bonnie. They chose to name the scholarship for their close personal friends, Gen. and Mrs. Mundy, in honor of their distinguished service to the country and their deep commitment to those who served. Eric Williams, a first-year law student, is the recipient of the Mundy Scholarship and currently serves in the Army.

      Lt. Gov. Mike Stack also spoke at the ceremony and expressed his thanks to all veterans, especially those in Pennsylvania, which has the fourth-largest population of veterans in the nation. Stack recently created the Veterans Task Force to identify and improve services for veterans, including housing, health care and legal aid. Commonwealth Law Dean Christian Johnson is a member of the task force and will lead the area that examines legal services available to veterans.

      Dean Johnson added that the scholarships presented on Veterans Day are one part of the law school's Veterans Initiative launched this fall with the intent to establish the school as one of the most veteran-friendly law schools in the country. Commonwealth Law is currently working to raise funds for a veterans law clinic anticipated to open in late 2017.

      "Our veterans are our greatest asset," said Johnson. "We are humbled by their service and dedication to our country."

      Other speakers at the Veterans Day event included Pennsylvania National Guard State Judge Advocate Col. Robert DeSousa and Pennsylvania Supreme Court Justice Debra McCloskey Todd.

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