Newspaper article The Topeka Capital-Journal

Ichabod to Lead Parade

Newspaper article The Topeka Capital-Journal

Ichabod to Lead Parade

Article excerpt

Since 1997, Jerry Farley has become a fixture in Topeka as president of Washburn University, where over the past 20 years he has orchestrated a near-complete makeover of the campus.

But what isn't as well known is that Farley was a drill sergeant instructor while serving in the U.S. Army during the Vietnam War era.

For the leadership he has demonstrated at Washburn University and, before that, in the military, Farley is being honored as the grand marshal of the fifth annual Salute Our Heroes Festival and Topeka Veterans Parade, which will take place on Nov. 11 in downtown Topeka.

The announcement came during a news conference Wednesday morning at Azura Credit Union, 1129 S. Kansas Ave., which is the presenting sponsor of the event.

"I was honored to be asked to be the grand marshal of this year's Veterans Day Parade on the 11th of November, up and down the streets of Topeka," Farley said, "where we honor those people who've been serving in the military for many years, many of them, and for the sacrifices they've made, and to tell them how much this community cares about them."

Farley acknowledged many people who know him as the bow-tie wearing president of Washburn University may have a hard time believing he was a drill sergeant in the Army.

"They're going to go, 'No, not a drill sergeant,' but yes, I was a drill sergeant," Farley said. "And then I became a drill sergeant instructor and was teaching other men how to be a drill sergeant."

Farley said he learned many life-long skills while serving in the Army, particularly with regard to leadership and teaching. He said he benefited from being around a group of people who were dedicated to serving the United States.

"Some of the most professional people that I've ever been around and ever worked with," Farley said of his Army colleagues. "They had such a love and such a commitment to the military, particularly at that time."

Farley noted his time in the military was during the Vietnam War, when "there were a lot of things happening in our country."

He said he was in the Reserve Officer Training Corps while he was in college and originally wanted to be an Air Force pilot, but his eyes "went bad. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed


An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.