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Vol 93 No 1 - January 4, 2016

How Basketball Came to Indiana: 1894-1901

Presented By: Roger Robison, MD, Scientech Member


Dr. Roger

The YMCA began in London in 1844. It was established in Boston in 1851 or 1852 and soon thereafter in New York City and Springfield, Massachusetts. The gymnasium facilities of this organization were critical in the development of basketball. The game was played early in the Ivy League colleges of the Northeast. The Springfield, Massachusetts YMCA was the initial site of the development of basketball in 1891. There were 44,000 inhabitants of Springfield at that time.

Springfield College opened in or around 1885. It was a school for Christian teachers and had YMCA support. A. A. Stagg and James Naismith were students at the college in 1890 in a two-year program to become physical education directors. Amos Alonzo Stagg lived from 1862 to 1965. He was a skilled baseball player, playing at several schools in New England. At Springfield he was also a divinity student. He worked at the Springfield YMCA playing and teaching basketball with the game’s developer James Naismith. He later left for Chicago to establish football at the University of Chicago. Yale was a leader in competitive football in the United States at that time. Both Stagg and Naismith played on the Springfield YMCA football team in 1891.

Naismith lived from in 1861 to 1939. He graduated from McGill University with degrees in physical education and theology. He taught in many institutions and was teaching in Indianapolis and Frankfort, Indiana in 1925 and 1936. The first basketball games were played in Springfield in December 1891. Players rotated between the YMCA and the college. Many of the early players went on to establish men’s and women’s basketball in institutions around the country. In the 1892/93 season Indiana was recorded as having played intramural basketball games.

The first basketball game in Indiana was an intramural game played in Evansville, Indiana on November 23, 1892. Games were played with varying numbers of players from 5 to 10. In 1894 intercollegiate play began with the earliest game between Trinity College and Wesleyan College in Connecticut. In addition to intercollegiate play there were games among colleges, YMCAs and high schools. Shortridge High School played Butler University in March 1900. Ralph M. Jones was a prime leader in establishing basketball in Indiana starting at Wabash College and at Crawfordsville High School. In 1908 Wabash College was named number one in basketball in the United States with a record of 24-0. These early ratings were made by self appointed rating groups.

Notes by Jerry Kurlander

Vol 93 No 2 - January 11, 2016

Undergraduate Research and STEM Education at a Liberal Arts College

Presented By: Dr. Scott Feller, Dean, Wabash College


Dr. Scott

Dr. Scott Feller is Dean of Wabash College and the Howell Professor of Chemistry. He graduated from UC Davis in 1993 with a Doctorate in Physical Chemistry. Wabash is an all male (1 of only 2 in the US) college of 900 students in Crawfordsville, Indiana. They do not have any graduate programs.


Wabash College

The theme of Dr Feller’s presentation was the advantages of Wabash’s strong program of integrating undergraduate research (STEM) with a liberal arts curriculum.

STEM and liberal arts have common goals of:

• Critical thinking
• Effective oral/written communication
• Teamwork and problem solving

Additional goals of liberal arts are:

• Moral/ethical reasoning
• Information literacy
• Civic knowledge/engagement
• Intercultural competence
• Understanding of multiple methods of inquiry

Historically, there was no conflict as Abraham Lincoln stated with the approval of the Morrill Act in 1862. The purpose of land grant colleges was, in part, to “promote the liberal and practical (STEM) education of the industrial classes…” However in recent history the STEM emphasis has demanded a larger portion of the curriculum. E.G.:

• Wabash chemistry > 38% STEM
• Purdue chemistry > 59% STEM
• Purdue chemical engineering > ~ 82%

Wabash’s advantages are:

• Small size allows customized solutions
• 10:1 student faculty ratio
• Faculty focus on undergraduate education (Professors teach all classes and labs as there is no graduate program.)

Wabash enhances the few STEM classes by using research as a vehicle for undergraduate STEM education. This started in the 1980’s in science and was expanded to liberal arts in the 2000’s. Wabash strives to provide an “authentic” research experience at the undergraduate level. They subscribe to the Council on Undergraduate Research: “Definition of Undergraduate Research: An inquiry or investigation conducted by an undergraduate student that makes an original intellectual or creative contribution to the discipline.”


Hays Hall

This also requires an investment in faculty hiring, development, and evaluation. Prospective hires are expected to have post doctorate education and a successful published research portfolio. It also requires good facilities as well as instrumentation and equipment as evidenced by the $30M Hays Hall

A measure of research success is the number of citations of Wabash authored papers. In 1997 this was <100, but has averaged 800 for the last four years. The student research focuses in one area so they can do in-depth work over several semesters/years. The students participate in grant writing as well. Seeking grants from foundations or the NSF clearly requires the research topics be original. This week seniors are taking exams requiring an oral presentation to panels of 3 professors.

Outcomes: The Oberlin 50 is a list of leading liberal arts colleges. A NSF study from 2006 of Post Doctoral degrees earned per 100 Bachelor’s degrees shows Wabash as number 4. Showing the value of liberal arts with STEM is Shane Evans who was recently elected mayor of Delphi at 25. Zach Rohrbach studied law after graduation, but now is teaching high school physics at Avon.

Wabash is the “high cost provider” to quote Dr Fellers at an annual tuition of roughly $40K, BUT with some interesting comparisons. The four-year graduation rate at Wabash equals the six-year rate at Purdue and IU. Also, with the substantial scholarships at Wabash, the average student loan debt is essentially the same as Purdue and IU.

Notes by John Peer

Vol 93 No 3 - January 18, 2016

Van der Waals Interactions in Molecular Systems

Presented By: Horia Petrache, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Physics, IUPUI


Dr. Horia

Today’s very interesting talk was given by Dr. Petrache from the Department of Physics at IUPUI. Dr. Petrache’s sense of humor made the talk particularly enjoyable.

The first part of the talk centered around Interactions and views of the physical world. The mechanical view of the physical world is that physical objects have size, shape and other physical properties. Mathematically, objects have volume and a surface. Physical objects exist in space and are separated by regions of nothingness. This was compared to the molecular view of the physical world which says that objects are made of atoms and molecules. Surface boundaries are fuzzy with molecules constantly escaping from and adhering to objects. This escape is nicely demonstrated by the sense of smell, by which molecules leaving objects are detectable by the nose which is sensitive to these molecules to a dilution of 5 parts per million. Air is also made of atoms and molecules so that on earth physical objects are separated by something other than emptiness.

The current view of the physical world is that the universe is composed of two types of fields. The first of these relates to energy fields including gravitational, electromagnetic, nuclear weak, and nuclear strong. The second of these is the fermionic or material fields - which includes electrons, neutrinos, and quarks. Elementary particles are excitations in these fields which give rise to electrons, protons, and neutrons.

Dr. Petrache went on to describe his research which involves Van der Waals forces in phospholipid membranes. Van der Waals interactions are the consequence of electrical polarizability of molecules and atoms with the production of instantaneous dipoles. This force is what holds most objects together with the exception of metals. Over the large surface such as a phospholipid membrane, these forces may be quite substantial. This is demonstrated by the Casimir effect in solid state physics whereby two smooth surfaces in a vacuum are very difficult to separate.

Dr. Petrache’s lab works with NMR and x-ray detectors to measure the space separating a double phospholipid membrane such as those present in a living cell. He studies these in an aqueous solution. He then goes on to see how this space is altered by the presence of various ions and other substances such as amino acids. With this information, he is able to calculate the Van der Waals forces in pico-Newtons (pN) that hold the membranes together.

This is basic science but may be helpful in developing future energy extracting or storage systems such as batteries.

Thanks to Dr. Petrache for this very interesting talk, and let’s hope that he returns for an encore presentation. The Scientech Club Foundation helped to fund some of his research.

Notes by Bill Elliott

Vol 93 No 4 - January 25, 2016

John Hancock, First Signer of the Declaration of Independence

Presented By: William H. Dick, M. D., Scientech Club Historian, Past President


Dr. Bill

On 13 March 2013, Bill Dick told the Scientech Club that Sam Adams was the Father of the American Revolution. That still rings true and it was pointed out at that time that he had helped Benjamin Franklin, Patrick Henry, Dr. Joseph Warren, James Otis, John Adams, Dr. Benjamin Rush, Thomas Paine and Paul Revere, all collaborators. None were more important, however, than John Hancock. He had inherited a fortune from his uncle Thomas Hancock and that money paid for the arms and supplies for the American Revolution.


John Hancock

John Hancock was a member of many of the Patriot clubs that met and discussed liberty, among them, the Sons of Liberty. Hancock did not leave many writings but he attended and chaired many meetings - and went to the Second Continental Congress in 1775. Indeed, he was chosen as its president. After George Washington was named Commander of the Army, it was Hancock who corresponded with him for the Congress.

Hancock was born in Braintree MA in the part that later became Quincy. John Adams was a boyhood friend in Braintree. After his adoption by his uncle, John Hancock lived on Beacon Hill overlooking Boston Commons, which his uncle owned and maintained. It was at the Boston Public Latin School that he learned his famous flourishing signature, the same one seen on the Declaration of Independence.

In keeping with the family tradition, Hancock attended Harvard College, graduating in 1754. For the next ten years he worked at the House of Hancock, his uncle’s shipping and department store business. He was made a partner in 1763, and he inherited the business in the following year upon his uncle’s death. The business was expanded, making Hancock Boston’s wealthiest citizen. Hancock was in Boston for the famous events: the Boston Massacre in 1770, the Boston Tea Party in 1773, Lexington and Concord in 1775; and Bunker Hill in 1775.


Sam Adams

It was Samuel Adams and John Hancock for whom the British searched in Lexington. In Concord, they looked for ammunition and supplies. Both were effectively hidden by the patriots. Over time, Hancock became a good speaker, an excellent chairman of meetings and an effective mediator. Hancock served as Massachusetts’ first Governor, the first Governor elected in the new world. He also served as Governor three more times.

The roots of the American Revolution went back for nearly a century. The year 1765 was the most important one in many authors' opinions. In that year, Sam Adams engineered the Stamp Act Congress in New York City. For the first time, the colonists met as a body. The five colonies in attendance voted to boycott English goods. It was the first organized opposition to royal rule.

John Hancock was the first signer of the Declaration of Independence and the only one to sign the first day. It took a few months for the other 55 men to sign the document. Hancock played a part in the Constitutional Convention of 1787 when he urged MA to ratify.

Upon Hancock’s death in 1793, his home was given to his wife, who sold it 1816. Unfortunately it was torn down in 1863, but a photo survives. It took Boston a century before Hancock was memorialized with a grave marker in the Granary Burial Grounds. In addition to his famous signature, John Hancock left a remarkable record as one of the leaders of the American Revolution.

Notes by Bill Dick

Vol 93 No 5 - February 1, 2016

Odd Spots in Iceland

Presented By: Lou Stanley, Scientech Club Member


Lou Stanley

Today's talk was a Power Point presentation of pictures that Bill and Lou Stanley have taken on past trips to Iceland. This newsletter cannot share all the pictures, so it will outline some of the history of Iceland and some of the interesting places they visited. The pictures themselves are being posted to the Scientech website for viewing by all.


Iceland is located in the North Atlantic, about half way between Greenland and Norway. In size, it's a little bit smaller than Cuba. It has a population of 329,100 and an area of 40,000 square miles. This makes it the most sparsely populated country in Europe. Cuba has 11 million people. Only 7% of the Iceland population is foreign-born. Politically, Iceland is a parliamentary constitutional republic with universal suffrage from age eighteen. A president is elected every four years. The national legislature, or Allthingi, of 63 members is also elected every four years.


The recorded history of Iceland began with the settlement by the Norwegian chieftain Ingolfr Arnarson in 874 AD. Archaeological evidence now indicates Gaelic monks had settled Iceland prior to that date. By 930, the chieftains had established a form of governance (the Allthingi), making it one of the world's oldest parliaments. By the end of that century, Christianity had come to Iceland due to the influence of the Norwegian king. Weakened by internal disputes, Iceland became subjugated to Norway in 1262 and eventually fell under Danish rule that lasted until World War I.

The language in Iceland is Old Norse, unchanged since the 8th century. It uses plenty of consonants and few vowels, making it extremely difficult for foreigners to learn. Fortunately, most Icelanders speak fluent English. Icelandic names are still based on the old Nordic system in which a person’s last name indicates the first name of his/her father.


Iceland has a market economy with relatively low taxes compared to other OECD countries. It maintains a Nordic social welfare system that provides universal health care and post-secondary education for its citizens. Iceland ranks high in economic, political and social stability and equality. In 2013, it was ranked as the 13th most developed country in the world.


Lou and Bill provided the club with wonderful pictures of volcanoes, glaciers, geysers, waterfalls, birds and flowers. Near the airport is the most visited place in Iceland called the Blue Lagoon, that is made from the water coming out of the electrical plant that makes use of the high-temperature water from the volcanic activity. Of course, pictures of the well known Atlantic Puffin were shown, along with pictures of the farming and fishing industry. Iceland provides a large harvest of Cod heads that are shipped to Africa.

It was a very interesting talk, and many members asked questions and reported their experiences in Iceland while they were there in the military.

Click HERE to view the Power Point slides used in this presentation. Click HERE for instructions on viewing or downloading individual slides or viewing the slides in a slideshow

Notes by Hank Wolfla

Vol 93 No 6 - February 8, 2016

State of Pediatric Research Today

Presented By: Mervin C. Yoder, Jr., MD


Yoder, MD

Dr. Mervin Yoder, a 1980 graduate of the Indiana University School of Medicine, is Director of the Herman B. Wells Center for Pediatric Research at Riley Hospital for Children at Indiana University. The Wells Center has over 300 researchers and lab staff, including 30 principal investigators, 50 postdoctoral fellows and graduate students, 20 research assistants, over 200 research technicians and staff, and administrative staff. Their objectives are: to increase knowledge about pediatric diseases, to develop new approaches for diagnosis and treatment, and to provide proper training.


Wells Center

The research groups of the Center include Molecular Oncology, Diabetes, Infectious Disease, Pulmonary/Asthma/Allergy, Hematologic Malignancies, Cardiovascular Development Biology and Cardiovascular Genetics. The Scientech Club Foundation has given nearly $36,000 to the Wells Center over the past four years. Dr. Yoder covered the advances in every one of these areas. It is too detailed for our purposes, so certain examples and principles will be given.

Pediatric disease in the past was mostly concerned with acute illnesses, especially infection. However, the rate of chronic disease has doubled in the past two decades. Most new drugs are not made for children. In cancer research, the five-year survival has risen from 10% to 90%. New medicines have been developed for relapsed Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia and Neuroblastoma. A new discovery into non-surgical treatment for Type I Neurofibromatosis has been made.

Recent advancements have been made in personalized chemotherapy using genome-guided dosing to maximize efficiency and minimalize side effects. This allows a more specific treatment. In diabetes research, it is thought that one in three children will develop the disease in their lifetime. In one recent year, over 18,000 young people developed type 1 diabetes and over 5,000 developed type 2 diabetes. Collaborative studies are being done with IU and Purdue on diabetes. New molecular pathways are being identified that can alter or prevent type 1 or type 2 diabetes.

In global health, two million children die every year from pneumonia, diarrhea or malaria. AIDS affects 3.2 million children but death rates are down 1/3 in the past decade. Efforts are being made to decrease the brain damage from malaria. Asthma and allergic diseases are common and research is being done to try and understand the development of cells that promote allergic diseases.

Progress is being made in childhood malignancies, especially acute lymphocytic leukemia and others. Studies are being done to discover biomarkers of complications following hematopoietic cell transplantation. Significant research is progressing in congenital heart disease which affects 1 in 100 babies born each year. Work into regenerative growth of heart muscle in being done. Normally scar tissue develops where muscle has been injured in a heart attack. New muscle growth would be revolutionary. Efforts are also being made in blocking heart muscle damage.

This thrilling overview of research projects at the Wells Center demonstrates that important and outstanding research is being done at Riley Hospital. The Scientech Club Foundation is proud to have supported scholars at the Wells Center.

Notes by Bill Dick

Vol 93 No 7 - February 15, 2016

The Creation of "Indiana Joins the Nation"

Presented By: Angela Giacomelli, Exhibition Researcher, Indiana Historical Society



Angela Giacomelli, exhibition researcher at the Indiana Historical Society, spoke about the creation of “1816: Indiana Joins the Nation,” an exhibit celebrating the 200th anniversary of statehood for Indiana. Ms. Giacomelli hails from Illinois where she obtained her bachelors degree in history in 2009 from U. Illinois at Urbana Champaign. Her internship and masters degree from IUPUI brought her to Indiana, where she currently resides and is employed.

The presentation focused on a blend of history from the time of the writing of the Indiana Constitution, together with the concepts and design behind the making of the “You Are There” exhibit that opened at the Historical Society in September of 2015. The goals of the exhibit are to introduce attendees to some of the people behind the constitution and to explain the constitution-making process.


State Capital

The Constitutional Convention took place in the modest setting of a re-purposed home in Corydon, IN. Originally slated to take place in the Corydon State Capitol, the construction of this building was not completed in time for the convention. The Indiana territory had only recently reached the minimum population of 60,000 required for statehood, as documented in the 1815 census. The convention brought together the opposing parties of the Virginia Aristocrats led by William Henry Harrison (governor of the Northwest Territories and not in attendance), and the Jennings Popular Party led by Jonathan Jennings (who would become the first governor of Indiana). A total of 43 delegates attended the convention, eight of whom are highlighted in the exhibit, including Jonathan Jennings, Frederick Rapp of New Harmony, Alexander Devin, a Baptist preacher, Dennis Pennington of Corydon, Robert Hanna, a farmer from Brookville, and William Hendricks, secretary of the convention. Interestingly, only about seventeen of the delegates were lawyers and many represented “common folk” such as farmers and businessmen.



The delegates “butted heads” on many important issues. A key issue discussed was slavery, which was generally favored by the Virginia contingent. Although slavery was not allowed within the Northwest Territory bylaws, there were large loopholes which allowed recent immigrants to bring slaves with them. After considerable debate, the final Constitution of Indiana contained explicit verbiage that outlawed the institution of slavery.

Popular mythology holds that key debates took place under the constitutional elm tree in Corydon to alleviate the heat of summer. However, close scrutiny by historians has not found firm footing for this notion. In fact, a major volcano eruption in 1815 resulted in climate changes leading to the designation of this as the “year without a summer.” So the use of the fabled tree as a safe haven from Indiana summer heat seems to be more myth than fact.

Ms. Giacomelli provided many interesting details on the concepts and design behind the construction of the exhibit. These included the use of the state seal at the end of the entranceway to lure visitors to the exhibit, the re-creation of the meeting rooms without the aid of historical photos, and the content room which contained among other items an original copy of the Indiana Constitution signed by all of the attendees.

Despite providing an engaging talk on the “1816: Indiana Joins the Nation” exhibit, Ms. Giacomelli emphasized that the only way to fully appreciate the exhibit is to visit in person. The Scientech Club thanks her for igniting our interest in the 200th anniversary celebration of statehood for Indiana.

Notes by Ray Kauffman

Vol 93 No 8 - February 22, 2016

The Shroud of Turin

Presented By: Gary Stump, Pastor, Onward Church


Gary Stump

Mr. Stump attended Indiana University, and received his bachelor degree from Crossroads Bible College here in Indianapolis. His divinity degree is from the Southern Baptist Seminary in Louisville, KY. Gary was married with four young children and working in the insurance business with his father when, in June 1988, his wife was killed in an auto accident with a drunk driver. This forever changed his life; he stopped selling insurance and went into the seminary, then full time ministry.


Shroud of Turin

He has had an interest in the shroud of Turin for a number of years and in the process acquired a depth of knowledge of its history and scientific efforts to prove it is not authentic. To summarize his talk, he gave many test results, only one of which would prove the shroud was a fake. The only evidence he presented that it is not authentic is carbon dating results from three cloth samples that were dated by three different experts as coming from the period 1260-1390.


Digitally Processed

He began by reading four excerpts from Biblical scriptures, Matthew, Mark, Luke and John that make reference to the burial cloth used to cover the body of Jesus. He described how this purported burial cloth found its way from Jerusalem through the Middle East, France and ultimately to Italy. It was first placed on display in 1578 in Turin where it has remained since that time.

The cloth is made from linen (a requirement of all Jewish burial cloths of that period) and is 14 x 3.5 feet in size. As he described the cloth, there are marks on the male body that are evidence of the persecution described in scripture: piercing of the forehead by a crown of thorns, a major wound on his side, wounds on his wrists and ankles, etc.

In 1978 the Vatican authorized unlimited access to the shroud for five 24-hour days. This analysis was named the Shroud of Turin Research Program or STURP for short. The group was allowed to cut three small pieces that were later carbon dated as was described above. During this examination period every conceivable test, photographic technique, etc. was employed to gather information about the shroud.

As Mr. Stump reports, all of these tests, except the carbon dating, supported the contention that the cloth is authentic. For example, the image was like a photographic negative, possible only by being transferred from the body underneath. It was not in any known way artistically created since there is no paint, ink or any other substance on the linen fibers; the fibers themselves were changed. The image on the cloth has an actual three-dimensional character that can be seen in computer scans. This scan was used by one expert to actually craft a picture of the face captured in the cloth.

It was a compelling presentation of how science was utilized to assess the authenticity of the material.

Click HERE to access an extensive site about the Shroud of Turin. A very complete discussion of the scientific results, pro and con, from the Shroud may be seen HERE

Notes by Dick Garrett

Vol 93 No 9 - February 29, 2016

Preparation, Recruitment and Retention of Teachers

Presented By: John E. Jacobson, Ed.D., Dean and Professor, Ball State University


John Jacobson

Dr. John E. Jacobson, Dean of Ball State’s Teachers College, spoke today about his concern regarding the declining enrollment nationally in teacher preparation programs. Dean Jacobson pointed out that 200,000 fewer people are enrolled nationally in teaching schools than about 5 years ago. Ball State loses about 50% of those who enroll in teaching programs. This is not entirely a bad thing as some of those who initially were expecting to become teachers changed their minds as their experiences in the classroom showed them a different side of the job.

There are shortages in the areas of business, special ed regarding the vision impaired or blind, deaf or communication impaired, as well as science, math and world languages. A recent interim commission on education focused on such ideas as paying new teachers more, making it easier to become teachers, reciprocity with other states regarding licensure, etc.

Ball State’s efforts since 2009 include a renovated Teachers College, established new Teachers College advisory and recruitment center, beginning a new residence hall living and learning community, increasing teachers prep as well as marketing. Recent Indian legislative disappointments have frustrated efforts for teacher performance improvements.

Notes by Jim Dashiell

Vol 93 No 10 - March 7, 2016

One Shot: WWII Photography of John A. Bushemi

Presented By: Ray Boomhower, Editor, Traces magazine, Indiana Historical Society


Ray Boomhower

Mr. Ray Boomhower is the Editor of Traces magazine of the Indiana Historical Society. He has written over a dozen books. Today’s talk was about one of them. His background is in Journalism (Indiana University) and History (Master’s, IUPUI). Mr. Boomhower was a student of photography in high school and even had his own darkroom. He discovered, however, that his chief talent lay in writing.

John Bushemi was a gregarious man who was the son of Italian immigrants. The parents arrived in the U.S. in 1906. After living in Iowa and Illinois, they found their way to Indiana in 1930, settling in Gary. How could he not be gregarious? He was one of nine children. He dropped out of high school to work in the steel mills. With some money from that work, he bought his first camera. He took photos of family and friends and developed them in a basement darkroom. Bushemi worked for the Gary Post-Tribune as an apprentice photographer. He was great at sports photography and his “perfect timing” led to the nickname of “One-Shot.”

He was very adventurous and loved to get near to the scene of the action. John Bushemi enlisted in the U.S. Army in July 1941. The army realized that Bushemi’s skills were not in not firing artillery shells but in photography, so he was assigned to the Public Relations office. Bushemi met other photographers and compared ideas. Mr. Boomhower showed many slides of Bushemi’s photos which were taken before he enlisted.


Marion Hargrove, a photographer and author of See Here, Private Hargrove, said of John, “I don’t think that I’ve ever known a more thoroughly likable and ingratiating person than Bushemi.” Hargrove was hired by Yank Magazine, the weekly Army public publication. It contained cartoons, pin-ups of movie stars and a column for soldiers’ gripes. Bushemi joined the magazine just before its initial publication date of June 17, 1942.

In November, Bushemi and Merle Miller were sent to Honolulu to open the magazine’s Pacific Bureau. Again, Ray Boomhower showed us slides of John Bushemi’s island photos, taken with his Speed-Graphic camera. Many photos were of areas that had been bombed on December 7, 1941. Bushemi, always wanting to get close to the action, was sent to New Georgia to cover the combat there. The dense jungle photos are frightening because Japanese soldiers could be just a few yards away.

In November 1943 John Bushemi and Yank reporter Larry McManus were ordered to the Gilbert Islands where they participated in the invasion of Makin Island. Sixty five hundred U.S. troops tried to dislodge 800 Japanese soldiers at Makin. Machine gun fire and sniper fire competed with mosquitos to endanger the troops. Because of the heat and humidity, cameras had to be cleaned and oiled frequently.





In his next assignment, Bushemi met up again with Miller at Kwajalein Atoll, the largest coral atoll in the world. John fractured a finger but refused to be sent back to Honolulu for surgery (the finger was splinted).

Four waves of U.S. troops were landed without much trouble, but suddenly the enemy responded with rifle fire and mortar shells. Later, Miller and Bushemi came under heavy fire and Bushemi received shrapnel wounds in his left cheek, neck and left leg. Bushemi died from blood loss while in surgery aboard a Navy transport. The Navy held a memorial service on February 22, 1944; another one was held in Gary on March 3, 1944.

Bushemi’s parents were immigrants from Sicily who became Americans. Bushemi volunteered to serve his country – the new country to his parents. Technician 3rd grade John A. Bushemi died, but hundreds of his WW II photos live on, in part due to Ray Boomhower’s fine book, One Shot: The World War II Photography of John A. Bushemi.

His remains were later buried at Gary’s Mount Mercy Cemetery in November 1947.

Notes by Bill Dick

Vol 93 No 11 - March 14, 2016

Why do we give? The origin and history of philanthropy

Presented By: Jeff Rasley, J.D., Adjunct Professor, Butler University, Club member


Jeff Rasley

Today’s speaker is a familiar face at Scientech. Jeff Rasley is an active and valuable member of the Club. In today’s talk he summarized a semester-long honors level course in philanthropy he teaches at Butler.

He began by explaining that the origin of the word philanthropy springs from Greek. Philos, defines love and Anthropos roughly translates as humanity.

The whole issue of philanthropy seems to be a conflict between our own self-interest and the needs of other people usually worse off than us. What compels us to give up valuable assets and give them to a needy person or organization? This is deeply motivated by religious values.

In the Old Testament book of Deuteronomy, the scripture lays out clear rules on sharing resources with others. Deuteronomy 14:28-29 points out that at the end of three years “thou shalt bring forth all the tithe of thine increase of the same year and give it to strangers, the fatherless, and the widow.” Jeff pointed out that the recipients of these gifts would be restricted to the Jewish faith and would not include others. The Old Testament also lays out the fact that loans are to be forgiven after seven years, bankruptcy is defined, etc.; rules will help the society function better.

Plato defined a society that functioned so well that there would be no need for philanthropy. He believed all citizens would be gainfully employed with adequate compensation and there would be no poor, sick or widowed who needed help.

The New Testament changed the entire framework for defining recipients needing assistance. In Luke 10, a religious expert in a discussion with Jesus quotes Jesus saying, “Love the Lord God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your strength, and with all your mind, and love your neighbor as yourself.” The expert asks, “But who is my neighbor?” Christ tells the story of the Good Samaritan who helped the man who was robbed and lying by the side of the road. After telling this story Jesus asks, “Which of these three do you think became a neighbor to the man who was robbed?” The expert answered, “The one who showed mercy to him.” This teaching removes the restraints established in the Old Testament and says a neighbor is basically anyone who needs mercy.

The final portion of the presentation focused on two ways to do philanthropy as described in two books, Three Cups of Tea, by Greg Mortensen and Bringing Progress to Paradise, by the presenter, Jeff Rasley.

The presentation concluded with two important ideas:

1. The enlightened modern method of philanthropy: Develop an infrastructure with cultural sensitivity that meets basic needs for any and all to live decently and have the opportunity to thrive, but requires mutual investment from donors/recipients to be sustainable (“handouts” only for emergencies) (“teach to fish”).
2. The power of volunteering has been documented for the last 2,500+ years, however recent research sheds even more light on its surprising benefits. Science now proves what great leaders and philosophers have known for years: “One of the great ironies of life is this: He or she who serves almost always benefits more than he or she who is served.” – Gordon Hinckle

Notes by Dick Garrett

Vol 93 No 12 - March 21, 2016

Facilitating data-driven traffic safety policy in Indiana

Presented By: Dona Sapp, Principal Investigator, Project Manager, Indiana University Public Policy Institute


Dona Sapp

Ms. Sapp currently serves as Principal Investigator and Project Manager on the annual traffic safety research project conducted in partnership with the Indiana Criminal Justice Institute. In this role she oversees the Institute’s traffic safety research team’s analyses of Indiana motor vehicle crash data and the production of a series of annual publications on various aspects of traffic collisions. She also serves as a member of the Indiana Traffic Records Coordinating Committee.

Ms. Sapp holds bachelor and master degrees from the IUPUI School of Public and Environmental Affairs. Her presentation discussed research methods and some of the findings, all conducted each year with the Indiana Criminal Justice Institute. All of this is to facilitate data-driven traffic safety policy in Indiana. This is the tenth year of the partnership. These efforts receive federal support from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and follow the guidelines of NHTSA.

Research findings are summarized in an annual series of fact sheets and other publications on various aspects of traffic collisions including alcohol-related crashes, seatbelt usage, motorcycle involvement, dangerous driving and child passenger safety. These publications serve as the analytical foundation of traffic safety program planning and design in Indiana. They highlight the traffic safety problems which assist in making recommendations for effective policies. This provides necessary information allowing the state to apply for federal funding to support traffic safety program improvements.

Data are gathered from Indiana State police crash report information, Indiana Motor Vehicles driver history, and many other sources including the Indiana Department of Transportation and the Indiana court system. The IUPUI Department of Biostatistics is a management/processing partner of this vast amount of information.

Some of the information learned includes the frequency of fatal crashes over the years, the economic costs associated with various types of collisions, the effectiveness of seatbelts and the impact of speeding drivers. Usage of this information has led to targeted enforcement and public awareness campaigns to increase seatbelt usage, enhance proper child restraint, increase enforcement of speeding driver legislation and enhancement of driver license requirements among many other improvements.

Notes by Malcolm Mallette

Vol 93 No 13 - March 28, 2016

Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery: What's Hot and What's Not!

Presented By: Richard Chua, MD -- Clinical Professor, Division of Neurosurgery, University of Arizona College of Medicine


Dr. Richard

Minimally invasive spine surgery techniques have enjoyed increased popularity among patients and are quite attractive to surgeons as they offer many potential advantages over traditional open surgery techniques. These include less pain, less use of pain medicine, shorter hospitalizations, faster recovery, fewer infections, earlier return to work and recreational activities, fewer complications, and eventually less cost. Dr. Chua offered several examples of quantitative improvements in these factors. For example, a multi-day in hospital stay is usually reduced to over-night or even out-patient.

The surgical tools and techniques for standard spine surgery have been modified to accomplish these minimally invasive approaches, while still maintaining the goals of surgery. These goals include decompression of the spinal nerves, correction of spinal imbalance, improvement in symptoms, stabilization of the diseased segments, and achieving fusion of those same segments. The literature now supports the additional effectiveness and improvement in health care quality measures for these techniques especially in the early post-operative period.

Clinical applications of minimally invasive spine surgeries can be divided into basic and advanced techniques, and these were briefly reviewed and described using case examples. Representative X-rays, MRIs, and intra-operative photos were projected to demonstrate these applications. Dr. Richard Chua is a neurosurgeon in Tucson, Arizona and is affiliated with Northwest Medical Center. He received his medical degree from Indiana University School of Medicine and has been in practice for more than 20 years. Dr. Chua grew up in Indianapolis and is the son of Scientech Member Dr. Gonz Chua.

Notes by Dr. Gonz Chua