The Eighth Page

Grandparents Confuse WWII Reenactment For Actual Combat and Brutally Beat Fake Hitler

On Saturday, horrific violence cast a shadow over what is normally a beautiful weekend for students and their grandparents. Grandparents’ Weekend, an annual event allowing grandparents to explore the Academy, was marred by fighting and bloodshed during a History 310 class presentation. For the past three weeks, History 310 students had been preparing an elaborate World War II reenactment. The students and their teachers planned to perform scenes from the Battle of the Bulge and D-Day, playing both American and German soldiers. “It seemed like a good idea,” said Tiffany Rodney ’08 from the hospital. “For Parents’ Weekend, we usually do a Civil War reenactment. We thought the grandparents would enjoy this,” she said. “I thought it would bring back memories of my grandfather’s time in the war,” said Justin Marquette ’08, “instead, he went nuts.” Indeed, many grandparents did go nuts. No, it was not the usual dementia or decrepitude that rattled the minds of these seniors, but the passion of battle that drove them to violence. When the battle scene began, several students portraying American soldiers fell to the ground, acting as though they had been injured. Infuriated, many grandfathers in the audience rose from their seats and attacked the students standing in as Nazi soldiers. Most of the elderly women in the audience quickly left to obtain jobs in factories building planes. “I thought they were just excited to see the battle, but soon I realized they thought it was the real thing,” said Harold Tenrag ’10. “My grandfather wrestled one my classmates to the ground, demanding that he surrender and condemn fascism.” Immediately, two students were knocked unconscious by the blows. Facing the majority of the violence was Jordan Roth ’08, who was dressed as Nazi dictator, Adolph Hitler. “When Jordan stepped up to the podium to deliver a speech as Adolph Hitler, the crowd just lost it,” said Instructor in History Ted Quattlebomb, whose leg was injured in the incident. Two grandparents rushed the stage, tearing apart Jordan’s Hitler costume while beating him senseless. The students playing Jordan’s bodyguards, Stephanie Chang ’07 and Rick Jones ’08, were fortunate to escape in a black Volkswagen adorned with swastikas. Reports indicate that Chang and Jones faced similar violence in downtown Andover. Eight students, four of whom were Nazis, and four were American GIs, were rushed to Isham Medical center. Isham reported that more than 14 grandparents “requested medical attention” and that “someone tape Matlock for them.” The History Department will meet later this week to discuss an appropriate response to the battle reenactment fiasco. Dr. Quattlebomb has said that he hopes that next year, the grandparents will react differently to the students’ presentation. “I hope that both the grandparents and the students will learn from this.” Phillips Academy Public Safety (PAPS) arrived on the scene nearly ten minutes after the fighting broke out. Two patrol cars blocked off the battlefield. A makeshift tent was erected to treat injured students. Marquette said, “When the medical tent was treating the injured kids in uniform, all of the grandparents calmed down because they thought they were watching an episode of “M*A*S*H.” (Editor’s Note: This article is a report of last year’s Grandparent’s Weekend.)