Game Day Kicks Off with an Address from LtCol Justin Ansel ’91
On the morning of game day for the Great American Rivalry Series, Blue Jay spirit was at an all-time high, and LtCol Justin J. Ansel, Jr. ’91, USMC had one mission: keep the enthusiasm rolling. LtCol Ansel succeeded in his Morning Assembly assignment, speaking on tradition and using his more than 20 years of Marine Corps service to fire up nearly 1,400 Blue Jays for a big night at Tad Gormley Stadium.
During Friday evening’s game against Holy Cross, Jesuit will proudly honor LtCol Ansel for his distinguished and meritorious military service to the United States. His career has included numerous leadership positions including rifle platoon commander, company executive officer, future operations officer, second platoon commander, recruiting operations officer, and company commander. Additionally, he spent three years with the Seabees.
On any other day of the year, LtCol Ansel noted that Jesuit and Holy Cross share common values. However, the story changes on the football field — the rivalry game’s very own battle for the Golden Football. “In the infantry, your squad has one purpose,” he said. “Go after the enemy.”
LtCol Ansel’s tours of duty have included assignments at Guantanamo Bay and in the Western Pacific, Kuwait, the Republic of Georgia, Afghanistan, Iraq, and several countries in Eastern Europe. Several assignments have included deployments in support of operations Enduring Freedom and Iraqi Freedom. LtCol Ansel is currently serving as the commanding officer at Camp Lejeune.
Having traversed the globe, LtCol Ansel made his expectation for this particular trip back to Banks Street quite clear: “I didn’t travel across the country to see anything but this return to Jesuit,” he said, referring to the Golden Football trophy. “Tonight I look forward to the football team leaving everything they have on the field to come away with a win. And I look forward to the rest of the student body being out there in support of the football team to ensure that we do indeed take this trophy back.”
At Jesuit, LtCol Ansel was a member of the MCJROTC program and served as a Big Brother and captain of the Blue Jay soccer team his senior season. He is married to Laura Ward Ansel, a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine, and they have a four-day-old son, Joseph. The Ansels currently reside in Sneads Ferry, North Carolina.