We published a Veterans Day article celebrating DU’s important role in educating veterans returning from World War II. The University grew to 15,000 students with the addition of barracks and quonset huts along the south side of Iliff Avenue to serve returning GI’s.
The last visible vestige of DU’s role in educating ‘the greatest generation’ was recently scraped (featured photo) – likely to make room for parking or a new structure.
The old, grey building (pictured below) was situated on the southwest corner of Iliff and York, between the Newman Center for the Performing Arts and the new Daniel Felix Ritchie School of Engineering and Computer Science.
During and after World War II, DU became known as ‘GI Tech’ and the student population swelled. Double rows of Quonset huts lined the south side of Iliff Avenue (below) along with the recently scraped grey army barrack building.
This demolished building, largely unnoticed, was a final reminder to both the community and students of DU’s critical role in educating returning soldiers – and the powerful contributions they then made to their families, DU, their community and the world.
I believe that there should be a plaque or visible monument constructed along Iliff Avenue to recognize ‘GI Tech’ and DU’s role in educating The Greatest Generation, lest this important period be forgotten.