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World War II


"No one can be free from worry until he comes to that country where no friend ever leaves us."

St. Augustine
1st Commentary on Psalm 68

Although the Villanova community had expressed strong isolationist sentiments in the years leading up to the American declaration of war in December 1941, the campus soon found itself on a war footing. In March 1942 all students were compelled to participate in physical fitness exercises and in June of that year the college adopted a special wartime calendar. The following spring Villanova students planted a victory garden between Corr Hall and the railroad station. Meanwhile, compulsory military service threatened to deplete the all-male college of its students. This crisis was averted by securing a unit of the Navy V-12 program for Villanova in 1943. The program trained Navy recruits on the Villanova campus and after the war became Villanova's Navy ROTC unit. At least 65 Villanovans, including V-12 students, lost their lives in World War II.

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