by Kathryn Stroppel
Professor of Osteopathic Manipulative Medicine and Grand Marshal Michael D. Lockwood, D.O., ’81, led the procession of ATSU-KCOM’s newest class of 172 graduates at Baldwin Hall Auditorium on the campus of Truman State University on May 15.
Carl G. Bynum, D.O., M.P.H., ’85, chair of the ATSU Board of Trustees, welcomed graduates and guests, and introductions were made by ATSU-KCOM Dean Philip Slocum, D.O., ’76, who also hooded his son, Erich, during the ceremonies. AOA President Larry A. Wickless, D.O., ’67, delivered the commencement address and received an honorary doctor of osteopathic medical education degree from ATSU President Jack Magruder. Emeritus Professor of Biochemistry Richard J. Cenedella, Ph.D., received the emeritus award.
Immediately following the ceremony, Major General Douglas J. Robb commissioned KCOM’s 21 military graduates, of whom 11 will enter the Air Force, six will enter the Army, and four will join the Navy.
During the commencement address, Dr. Wickless acknowledged his having come full circle, first crossing the stage in Baldwin Hall in 1963 as a graduate of Truman State University and later in 1967 as a graduate of KCOM. Dr. Wickless, who has served as president of the Kirksville Osteopathic Alumni Association and last year received its service award, also served nine years on the ATSU Board of Trustees.
Dr. Wickless told graduates it was good to be home and an honor to celebrate with them. He said, “No matter where your journey will lead you and no matter what route you take, please do one thing – stay connected with your osteopathic family, your Kirksville Osteopathic Alumni Association, your state and specialist societies, as well as your national organization, the AOA.
“Like your family and friends, we’ll be here to support you throughout your careers. So, as you enter the next journey, remember to study and read, take time with your family, and really listen to your patients. If you fall short of being perfect, you’ll still end up being a great D.O., and I’ll always be proud of you.”