Deceased May 7, 2018
Birchard “Bud” Fossett was born in Waterville, Maine, and came to Amherst from Hebron Academy. He joined the Navy three months after graduation and served for 32 years, retiring as a captain. He credits freshman roommates and fellow Phi Psis Pete Schramm ’56 and Harry Gotoff ’56 with widening his horizons from his circumscribed small-town Maine upbringing.
Further heavily influenced by English I Professor Theodore Baird and his Amherst years in general, post-Navy, Bud continued his learning, garnering approximately 300 credits and three associated degrees and honors.
Bud described his Navy career in part: “I seemed to be associated with just about every calamity that befell the Navy. I drafted the message that ordered the USS Liberty to its position just off the Sinai Peninsula, where it was attacked by Israeli patrol boats and fighter aircraft in 1967, and that was followed a decade later by a special assignment, organizing the direct national cryptologic support to the Iranian hostage rescue attempt, and on and on—some can be told; some cannot.”
Bud lost his loving wife, Joan, 12 years ago. He is survived by three children, Leon, Stuart and Sabrina; their spouses; and eight grandchildren.
Bud put his heart and soul into his family, education and the Navy.
Peter Levison ’56