April 12, 2013
WEST POINT, N.Y. -- Army goalie Ryan Leets was presented with the prestigious David M. Fraser Award when The Society of American Military Engineers and the Army Engineer Association honored 127 engineering majors in the U.S. Military Academy Class of 2013.
Leets, a senior from Kentwood, Mich., is a civil engineering major with a 4.0 grade-point average and last season was named the Atlantic Hockey Association Scholar Athlete of the Year with the highest GPA among league goalies.
Lt. Gen. Thomas P. Bostick, the 53rd U.S. Army chief of engineers and commanding general of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, spoke at the ceremony. Bostick was originally turned down for acceptance to West Point but received a presidential nomination after learning of the process for children of noncommissioned officers. Jack O’Neil, executive director of the Army Engineer Association, also offered remarks.
Leets was presented with the Fraser Award which recognizes superb academic and athletic accomplishments. The award is named for David Fraser, West Point Class of 2004, “a scholar, cross country athlete and natural leader,” according to Col. Stephen Ressler, professor and head of the Department of Civil and Mechanical Engineering. Fraser was killed in action two years after being commissioned when he volunteered to take the commander out on one last drive on his final day of his tour of duty in Iraq.
“Receiving the David M. Fraser Award was extremely humbling for many reasons,” Leets said. “I think it goes without saying that Col. Ressler’s introduction spoke volumes of the leadership and character qualities Capt. Fraser possessed. To receive an award after hearing his words was awe-inspiring and something I will surely never forget. Not only is this award special for whom it represents, but also because it was my classmates who determined its recipient. To know I made an impact on them as they have made an impact on me is rewarding in and of itself.”
Leets is a four-year varsity letterwinner and will post at Fort Carson, Colo.