By Kevin Kelly
The 48th annual Lt. Michael P. Quinn Scholarship banquet will be held on April 1 at the Bunker Hill Knights of Columbus at 545 Medford St. Friends, family and guest speakers will gather to pay tribute to a remarkable “Townie” and salute the 47th Quinn Scholar Hugh Bernard O’Donnell, a freshman lacrosse player at Nichols College.
The Quinn scholarship was established in 1969 by a group of Michael’s friends, notably Eddie Johnson, Stephen Driscoll and Ronan Fitzpatrick, with the intention of keeping his memory alive by providing financial support to collegiate-bound “Townies.” To date, more than $171,000 has been awarded in Michael’s name.
Michael Quinn graduated from Boston Latin High School as a Scholar Athlete and was later selected as a Wolfpack hockey and football Hall of Famer. He also captained both teams and established a reputation as a ferocious competitor. Quinn furthered his academic and athletic legacy at the College of the Holy Cross where he, once again, achieved Hall of Fame status in both hockey and football. Michael’s collegiate career epitomized his “Townie” upbringing where the two-sport captain never forgot “where he came from” and always sacrificed for the good of the team. The offensively skilled defenseman (14 goals, 22 assists) not surprisingly led his hockey team in penalty minutes, more likely the result of sticking up for a teammate. Quinn received his United States Marine Corps commission upon graduation from the College of the Holy Cross and finished first in his class at the USMC Officers Training Academy in Quantico, Virginia. As a Second Lieutenant, Quinn was assigned to “H” Company, 2nd Battalion, 1st Marine Division and deployed to Vietnam. Weapons platoon commander Lt. Michael Quinn gave the “ultimate sacrifice” on August 29, 1969 while on patrol near DaNang. As a result of his heroism, for which Quinn received a Purple Heart and Bronze Star, many fellow Marines lives were saved.
The Lt. Michael P. Quinn Scholarship banquet offers an opportunity for the U.S. Marine corps to recognize one of their own and for Michael’s friends and family to celebrate his noble courage and character. The sense of love and grief at Michael’s loss is still palatable and the incredible testimonials from guest speakers evoke powerful emotions. Featured speaker at this year’s banquet is Brigadier General Christopher Mahoney, a South Weymouth native and graduate of the College of the Holy Cross, who is the Director of Strategy, Plans and Policies at USMC Operations Headquarters.
“Surround yourself with shinning souls that inspire you, lift you higher and bring forth the best in you.” Such is the company at the annual Lt. Michael P. Quinn Scholarship banquet.