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Sam Grashio: GU Hero

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  • Sam Grashio: GU Hero

    For those of you living in the greater Spokane area, let me recommend the March-April edition of Nostalgia Magazine on newstands. Unfortunately they don't seem to have online articles.

    The cover story is about an-almost forgotten genuine American and GU hero, Sam Grashio. Grashio grew up in an Italian-American family in Spokane and attended what was then Gonzaga High School before attending GU from 1938-1940. He then left to join the Army Air Force and became a 2nd Lieutenant assigned to the Philippines. He was taken prisoner by the Japanese in early 1942 and endured the Bataan Death March. For those of you versed in WW II history, he was held in the same camp as Mots Tonelli and Louie Zamperini ("Unbroken").

    He escaped after 361 days and for seven months served with guerrilla forces before being evacuated in Sept. 1943.

    He rose to the rank of Colonel in the USAF and then worked in GU administration, mostly in Development. He passed away in 1999.

    My recollection is that he is featured in the "Rogues Gallery" in the GU AD Building at the east end of the First floor.

  • #2
    I recently finished reading" Escape from Davao" The forgotten story of the most daring prison break of the Pacific War. Sam Grashio is a prominent player in this book going all the way back to his days in Spokane and Gonzaga Prep. A good read if you are into the WW2 thing, and a good read even if you are not!


    • #3
      One of the most spectacular human beings I've ever met. THE Colonel was a mentor to me....mid teens onward. He never asked for respect. If was a pleasure to give it him. Tough, dedicated and his devotion to Jesus was legendary. A perfect family man who embodied everything good about a life well lived.