Muhlenberg College students actively engaged in war efforts, from joining a unit of Civil Aeronautics Administration’s War Training School to enrolling in the Navy V-1 and V-7 programs in the Marine Corp Reserve or in the Army Enlisted Reserves or enrolling in the Navy V-12 program. As part of the Muhlenberg Memories Project, we interviewed Muhlenberg servicemen, representing the Army, Navy and Marines, about their college and active duty experiences.

William F. Fritz, ’45, Ensign, Navy

A high school graduate, William Fritz, determined to become a doctor, applied for and was accepted into the Navy V-12 program. Hailing from Appleton, Wisconsin, Fritz began his first Navy assignment as a pre-med student at Muhlenberg College in Allentown, Pennsylvania in July 1943.

Richard E. Meyer, ’45, Ensign, Navy

Richard E. Meyer grew up in Quincy, Illinois and, following high school graduation, applied for and was accepted into the Navy V-12 program at Muhlenberg College in Allentown, Pennsylvania. One of the first in the program that began in July 1943, Meyer was a pre-med major who continued to serve the Navy as a medical student and, later, as medical officer.

Ray (Raphael) Nies, ’45, Marines

A native Pennsylvanian, Ray Nies embraced many American traditions including attending college, following sports teams, and supporting the country’s war efforts. His experiences during his tour as a Marine during WW II reflect those traditions in his correspondence with Muhlenberg and in his interview.

Arthur T. Schmidt, ’49,

Arthur Schmidt’s college career at Muhlenberg was interrupted by the war’s need for his service in the Army Air Force. Serving in various capacities in the Air Corps, Schmidt found active duty afforded him new opportunities to see how others lived. After service, he returned to college, seeing campus and college culture with new eyes.

Nathan Kline, Major, Army Air Force

Nathan Kline, a native of Allentown, attended Muhlenberg College before distinguishing himself, at the tender age of 17, as an Air Force bombardier/navigator flying missions in the European Theatre of Operations.