The Sparrow Hospice program recently paid tribute to Douglas Kissane for his service to our country in the United States Army. The tribute was organized by Sparrow nurse Miranda Ridenour (who Doug fondly refers to as “Nurse Nicey Nice).
Doug, a Portland native, served in the army from 1962-1965, on the border between East and West Germany, during the Korean conflict. Following basic training at Fort Knox, Kentucky, Doug shipped out and began his work as a radio operator and repairperson for the 3rd Armored Cavalry Division, the same division once led by the famous George Custer. Doug has vivid memories of armed Russian soldiers on the east side of the Iron Curtain patrolling to ensure East Germans citizens did not escape to the west. Part of his job was to patrol the area and help anyone who managed to get across the border.
Following his service in the military, Doug returned to his job at Lansing Drop Forge, working as a welder. He rose in the ranks of union leadership, becoming Bargaining Chairperson and, ultimately, President of UAW Local 724. Along the way, Doug and his wife and lifetime partner, Carleen raised four children (Lynn, Donna, Mike and Amy). He retired from Lansing Drop Forge in 1994, after 30 years of service.
Doug invited some of his childhood friends who also served in the military to the Sparrow tribute. Joining Doug to be recognized for their contribution to our nation’s defense were Pat Quigley (Army), Roy Kissane (Air Force), Bill Stump (Army), Pat Vashaw (Navy) and Dick Mannning (National Guard). Doug and his buddies helped defend and secure our freedom and our nation owes them a debt of gratitude.
Photo 1 - Back row from left to right, Roy Kissane, Pat Vashaw, Pat Quigley, Dick Manning, and Bill Stump. Seated is Doug Kissane.
Photo 2 - Army photo of Doug Kissane