Gettysburg Licensed Battlefield Guide John J. Fitzpatrick, Jr., Esq. is host for a series on the Irish Brigade at Gettysburg. Johnâ€™s interest in Gettysburg began in centennial year of 1963 when he arranged a trip to the Battlefield for the Villanova University Student History Club. That sparked a continuing interest in the American Civil War. Throughout his travels in the Service, work and some vacations he has been to Civil War sites coast to coast from Fort Point under the Golden Gate Bridge, San Francisco, California to the home, church and College of Joshua Lawrence Chamberlain in Brunswick, Maine. He is now entering upon his ninth year of Guiding at Gettysburg.
His professional career began in 1966 as a United States Marine Corps Officer, Tank Platoon Commander then Pilot. He served a combat tour of duty in Vietnam completing 140 missions in the A6 Intruder for which he was awarded 9 Air Medals and Vietnam Service Awards. Captain Fitzpatrick was Honorably Discharged from Active Duty in 1971 whereupon he entered law school. Upon graduation in 1974 he began a 32 year career as Corporate Counsel for Gulf Oil and Chevron Corporation retiring in 2006. He is a Member in good standing before the highest Courts in Pennsylvania, the District of Columbia and California.
Contemporaneously with his first legal job, he transferred to the Pennsylvania Air National Guard and later the U.S. Air Force Reserve. He served as an Active Reservist Pilot/Forward Air Controller/Squadron and Group Training Officer at the Willow Grove NAS, PA from 1974-1984. He was transferred to HQ USAF at the Pentagon in Legislative Liaison from 1985-1993 and finally as a JAG Officer reporting to the USAF TJAG and General Counsel from 1993-1997 based on his civilian expertise to assist the Air Force with its new Arbitration and Mediation Programs. Colonel Fitzpatrick received 3 Meritorious Service Medals, the Air Force Commendation Medal and other Awards before transferring to the Retired Reserve in 1997. He now divides his time amongst Guiding at Gettysburg, certain volunteer Veteransâ€™ activities and serving as an Arbitrator in commercial, construction and securities cases.
John Fitzpatrick writes; â€œI appreciate the earlier related postings of my fellow Guides Rich Bellamy [Colonel Cross in the Wheatfield], the Editor of this Gettysburg Daily, Bobby Housch specifically for his postings of November 8 and 15, 2010 of the Weikert Lane [one of the most likely Avenues of Approach used by the Irish Brigade when it deployed to the Wheatfield in the late afternoon of July 2, 1863] and Dr. Rich Goedkoopâ€™s posting of President Kennedyâ€™s 1963 visit to Gettysburg. I also want to thank Licensed Battlefield Guides Rich Kohr for his posting on the Gettysburg Electric Railway and Ralph Siegel for sharing his expertise on the artillery fight at the Peach Orchard.”
â€œI also appreciate permission to use:
â€¢ New Yorkâ€™s Bravest, Painting by Don Troiani, www.historicalimagebank.com;
â€¢ Remember Ireland and Fontenoy, Painting by Rick Reeves, permission from Rick Reeves, rickreevesstudio.com;
â€¢ Pride of Erin, Painting by Dale Gallon, permission from Ms. Anne Gallon of Gallon Historical Art, Gettysburg, PA, www.Gallon.com;
â€¢ The Prince of Wales Flag courtesy of Erik Chipchase at mercenarygraphics.com. His e-mail address is [email protected] graphics.com..”
In addition to tours at the Gettysburg National Military Park, John also presents President Lincoln and the immortal Gettysburg Address, specifically in the context not only of the battle, but the enormous personal, political and policy pressures affecting the President when he prepared and how he presented it. He has spoken to Civil War Roundtables, Historical Societies, Rotaries and other church/civic/private clubs in PA, MD, CA and is scheduled to present in IL during 2013.
To contact John, please click here to reveal his email address.
In todayâ€™s Irish Brigade Post, Gettysburg Licensed Battlefield Guide Emeritus John Fitzpatrick explains some events at the dedication of the Irish Brigade Monument and President Kennedy’s visit to Ireland.
To see the previous Irish Brigade posts, click here.
To see other posts by Gettysburg Licensed Battlefield Guides, click here.