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Ken Hechler ’35

Ken Hechler ’35Ken Hechler ’35 is the subject of the documentary film Ken Hechler: In Pursuit of Justice, which premiered at Marshall University in April (and was shown on West Virginia Public Television in September), where Hechler taught and was awarded an honorary doctorate in May. “It was a bit of a shock to discover they had compressed into two hours so many aspects of the crazy things I had gotten involved in.” During his 71-year career, Hechler was part of the five-man team that debriefed Hitler’s top commanders during World War II, wrote four books about his war experiences, and advised President Harry Truman. He also served nine terms as a congressman and four terms as secretary of state for West Virginia and was the only congressman to march with Martin Luther King Jr. in Selma, Ala. The film “explores Hechler’s views on government and his commitment to helping individuals through public service and political office.”

2 Responses to “Ken Hechler ’35”

  1. Swarthmore College should be proud of its world-class graduate Ken Hechler who is one of America's greatest public servants since WWII. Visit his website - to learn more about a man who had devoted his life to helping others - NOT HIMSELF.

  2. Ken visited campus in late September with Larry Gibson. They talked with students about the environmental disaster called "mountain-top removal mining." The Phoenix, our student newspaper ran an article about their talk.

    I had the privilege of having an informal dinner with Ken and a few others before the double lecture, which was organized by Carr Everbach, a professor of engineering. Ken's doing well. The picture with this story is pretty accurate about how he looks these days. His mind is sharp and he walks pretty well, but he's pretty deaf.

    Jeff Lott