South Dakota State University was the site for six military veterans to receive a quilt of valor from Veterans of Foreign Wars Auxiliary National President Jean Hamil. Tuesday afternoon’s ceremony was held at the university’s Medal of Honor Park.
Receiving quilts were the following SDSU students and staff:
- Colten Allen enlisted in the Marine Corps in September 2015 and was first stationed at Camp Kinser, Okinawa, as a part of the 3rd Marine Logistics Group. He then transferred to Keesler Air Force Base and served as a formal schools instructor for the Marine Detachment at Keesler Air Force Base. Allen separated from the Marine Corps in September 2020 and is attending South Dakota State University working toward a bachelor's degree in psychology with plans to obtain a doctorate in physical therapy.
- Jordan Bogenrief was stationed in Twentynine Palms, California, from 2011-2015 as a machine-gunner in the U.S. Marine Corps and completed deployments to Afghanistan, Kuwait and Iraq. After leaving the Marine Corps in 2015, he earned a bachelor’s degree in sociology and completed a master's degree in clinical mental health counseling in 2021 from SDSU. Bogenrief currently works as a staff counselor at South Dakota State University.
- Santana Hanson has been serving in the South Dakota National Guard for eight years. She served in Iraq from 2016-2017 during Operation Inherent Resolve. Her current role in the National Guard is a platoon leader in the 211th Engineer Company from Madison. Hanson is also an SDSU graduate student studying ruminant nutrition. She has served as the president for the Armed Forces Association, chapter leader for Student Veterans of America and a member of the Students’ Association.
- Bailey Ross served with the U.S. Coast Guard, Station Sturgeon Bay (Wisconsin) in 2014 as a search and rescue crewman and went on to train as a gunners mate, stationed at Maritime Force Protection Unit Bangor (Washington) from 2015 to 2018. Leaving active duty, Ross became involved in the medical field and is currently attending SDSU as a nursing major. He also currently serves as an Air Force reservist at the 934th Aeromedical Evacuation Squadron, Minneapolis.
In addition, Brandon Bak and Bill Flippo received quilts.
Bak is currently stationed with the 114th Fighter wing out of Joe Foss Field in Sioux Falls. He has been stationed with the South Dakota Air National Guard since 2009-2019 as a crew chief. He has been on numerous stateside deployments with other major deployments to the countries of Jordan, South Korea and Afghanistan. In 2019, Bak took on the expediter position within the maintenance production office at the 114th fighter wing where he works currently, managing the maintenance, scheduled inspections, depot acceptance inspections and flying schedule. He recently returned from a combat exercise deployment as the production supervisor where he was distinguished as a superior performer. He currently resides in Brookings with his wife, Chelsea. They are both members of Gracepoint Wesleyan Church and are contributors to the Wounded Warrior Project.
Flippo served in the U.S. Army from 1998-2020 and served multiple tours in Iraq and Afghanistan as well as deployments to Africa and Saudi Arabia. He currently works for the South Dakota National Guard as a family readiness specialist. An active member of the VFW and American Legion, Flippo is the adjutant for the Department of the Dakotas Purple Heart Chapter.