Edward Kliewer III, Founder and Attorney
San Antonio, TX (1945-2018)
Destined to be a Marine, Ed was born 23 February 1945 in Washington, DC, on the same day the U.S. Marines raised the flag atop Mount Suribachi on Iwo Jima. He died 8 December 2018 at the age of 73.
Ed graduated from Hillcrest High School in Dallas, TX, in 1963 and Trinity University in San Antonio in 1967. Upon graduation, he was commissioned a second lieutenant in the Marine Corps and served on active duty from 1967-1970, 13 months of which were in Vietnam 1968-1969. There, Ed served as an artillery officer with 3d Battalion, 11th Marines, 1st Marine Division. He was awarded the Navy Commendation Medal with Combat “V,” two Navy Presidential Unit Citations, and the Combat Action Ribbon. He was discharged as a captain and then entered the School of Law at Texas Tech University.
In 1972, Ed joined his first Texas law firm where he developed an expertise in representing industrial and commercial property owners in property tax disputes statewide. He represented a number of major oil companies and was lead counsel in important property tax lawsuits throughout Texas and surrounding states. In 2016, as part of a team of attorneys, Ed participated in the largest successful property tax suit ever tried in Texas.
Unfortunately, Ed’s service in Vietnam exposed him to Agent Orange, and that ultimately led to a diagnosis of multiple myeloma in April 2010. Given 6 months to live, Ed underwent a stem cell transplant in November 2010. He continued to live courageously and graciously and to practice law for 8 years even though his disease never went into remission.
In 2013, Ed was instrumental in establishing the 3d Battalion, 11th Marines (3/11) Foundation as a 501(c)(3) non-profit to support wounded Marines at the San Antonio Military Medical Center (SAMMC) and elsewhere. He offered his legal expertise pro bono and, with his bride, Sara, served as “boots on the ground” whenever and wherever needed. Without Ed, the Foundation would not exist. The Board, therefore, is pleased to honor Edward Kliewer III as the founder of the 3/11 Foundation. He was Semper Fidelis to the end.
Woodrow “Woody” Hall
Director and President
Spring Hill, TN
“Woody” Hall has served on the 3/11 Foundation Board of Directors since 2014 and was elected President of the Board in 2016. He works closely with the Foundation Board and with veterans organizations to promote the 3/11 Foundation as a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. Woody believes “Our Warriors serve our Country, and some pay a huge price to ensure all enjoy the grace of liberty and freedom. Those of us who reap these benefits from the enormous price paid by a few must bear the price of responsibility. It is our responsibility to ensure these Wounded Warriors are cared for with the utmost respect and dignity. We must do everything we can to ensure they have a desire to “stay in the game.”
Woody served in the United States Marine Corps and retired after 30 years of service with the rank of Master Gunnery Sergeant (E-9). He served three combat tours of duty in Vietnam.
After his Marine Corps service, Woody entered the private sector and worked as a Controls Engineer in the Nuclear Power Industry. He ultimately retired a second time from Crane Nuclear. Woody is an avid golfer and enjoys playing golf with his sons.
Woody grew up in Welch, West Virginia, the son of a coal miner. He and his wife, Melissa, reside in Spring Hill, Tennessee. Woody can be contacted via email at email@example.com.
Tom Pace, President Emeritus
Tom Pace is a retired lieutenant colonel who enlisted in the Marine Corps Reserve as a senior in high school. He joined the Platoon Leaders Class (PLC) program in college, and, upon graduation from Texas Tech in 1961 with a finance degree, he was commissioned a second lieutenant in the Marine Corps.
Tom retired in 1983 after 22 years of active duty. The first half of Tom’s military career was spent in the artillery, including three years at Fort Sill, Oklahoma, where he was an instructor, and another three years of Inspector-Instructor (I&I) duty in El Paso, Texas. His combat experience in Vietnam with 3d Battalion, 11th Marines (3/11) and his duty as commanding officer of Golf Battery were cut short when he was medevacked in February 1968. The second half of his career was spent essentially on the East Coast where he put his college degree in finance to use.
A native of Amarillo, Texas, Tom returned to his home state after retiring from the Marine Corps. In Odessa, he was employed as the Fiscal Services Director of Ector County for 15 years, a position which expanded to serving additionally at various positions including director of data processing, veteran services officer, and even hospital administrator for a short time (thankfully). During this time, Tom received awards for his service to the community.
Governor George W. Bush appointed Tom to the Board of the State Office of Risk Management where he served the State of Texas for about seven years. Tom was elected to the Ector County School Board in 2008. During his five years as Trustee, he spent two years as Board President and was instrumental in the establishment of new schools to take care of Odessa’s growing student population.
Tom served as the first President of the 3d Battalion, 11th Marines (3/11) Foundation and then as Adviser to the Foundation until he was unanimously selected by the Board and appointed President Emeritus on June 20, 2023, by Foundation President Woodrow Hall.
Charles Ables, Director
A native of Arizona, Charles graduated from the University of New Mexico and was commissioned in the Marines in time to serve 19 months with 3d Battalion, 11th Marines in Vietnam. He had additional artillery assignments in the US and overseas, an intelligence tour in Vietnam and multiple logistics assignments on 4 continents to complete over 28 years Marine Corps service.
Charles currently has a tax practice in San Marcos, California. The firm handles tax planning, preparation and representation for individual, business, fiduciary and non-profit clients. Charles has passed the IRS Special Enrollment Examination to represent taxpayers before the IRS.
Charles and his wife, Kathleen, also a Marine veteran, live in Carlsbad, California, and have two adult daughters. They are active in veteran’s associations and enjoy travel as well as local activities.
Charles has been a Foundation director since 2013. He is committed to the goal of helping veterans.
Sara Kliewer, Director and Treasurer
San Antonio, TX
Sara Kliewer was born a Texan, then was transplanted to Hawaii for her intermediate years, and eventually moved to Virginia Beach for high school graduation. A Bachelor of Science in Fashion Merchandising and Clothing Textiles enabled her career in retail management, then as a manufacturers representative, and ultimately as a designer of infant apparel.
Sara currently lives in San Antonio, Texas, where she serves as Treasurer of the 3/11 Foundation and also as a Director. Her deceased husband, Ed Kliewer, was key in establishing the 3/11 Foundation as a 501(c)(3) non-profit and served as its residing attorney until his death in December 2018. Ed was a 100% disabled Marine due to Agent Orange-related cancer resulting from his service in Vietnam with 3d Battalion, 11th Marines. Sara’s and Ed’s involvement in the 2011 reunion of the 3/11 Association in San Antonio revealed a passion for the Marine Wounded Warriors at the San Antonio Military Medical Center (SAMMC). Sara proudly holds the title of “Mom” after all of her years of volunteering at the Marine Wounded Warrior Detachment, Marine Wounded Warrior Battalion (East) at SAMMC. She also serves as the 3/11 Foundation’s “boots on the ground” in the San Antonio area.
Joe Reyes, Director
Joe Reyes enlisted in the United States Marine Corps in February 1986 at age 28, finding himself older than his company commander. Joe injured his knee during training one week before graduation and was sent to Fort Sill, Oklahoma, for cannoneer training. In July 1986, Joe reported to India Battery, 3d Battalion, 11th Marines (3/11) and was transferred to HQ Battery four months later where he worked as the Battalion Legal Clerk. Subsequently, Joe volunteered to deploy with Hotel Battery, 3/11 to Okinawa and participated in exercise Bear Hunt ’88 in South Korea. After the deployment, Joe returned to HQ Battery in his previous billet and completed his bachelor’s degree.
Joe spent four years on active duty and restarted his computer career while serving in the Marine Reserves in several billets. In 1995, Joe volunteered to join the 35th Interrogator Translator Team and completed interrogator training in Dam Neck, VA, in 1997. He served with various intelligence teams and gained valuable experience. In 2003, Joe returned to active duty and, in 2004, deployed with a HUMINT Exploitation Team (HET) to Iraq under General Mattis in Fallujah. Joe was the HET Chief and chief interrogator at the Camp Falluja Detention Facility and participated in several raids to capture high-value targets. Joe returned early from deployment to attend a 13-week counterintelligence training in Dam Neck. After graduation, Joe’s team went to the Horn of Africa, Djibouti, and Ethiopia. Joe enjoyed the work in Ethiopia protecting deployed military personnel operating in the area.
In 2007, after completing 21 years of service, Joe retired as a staff sergeant. Answering the call for adventure and opportunity, Joe deployed to Afghanistan in 2009 as a civilian Senior Counterintelligence Analyst for the Defense Intelligence Agency. Joe has over 40 years of computer experience, and in his current civilian role, he is a Senior Manager responsible for threat intelligence, cybersecurity incident response, and ethical hacking. Joe never thought that his two passions for geopolitics and history, and his love for computers, could ever come together, but they have.
Joe enjoys riding his bicycle and staying fit despite a paralyzed arm stemming from cancer diagnosed in Afghanistan but mainly attributed to “burn pits” in Iraq, Djibouti, and Afghanistan. Joe enjoys Marine camaraderie and esprit de corps and is honored to be a member of the Marine Artillery Association.
COL Roark began his military career as an enlisted member of 3d Battalion, 11th Marines at Camp Pendleton, California, in 1988. He deployed in support of Operation Desert Storm as an Artillery Forward Observer with 1st Battalion, 7th Marines. Upon completion of his initial enlistment in the Marine Corps, he returned home to attend college and subsequently joined the Army National Guard in 1993.
COL Roark was commissioned as an Ordnance officer in 2000 by the Indiana Military Academy. His career as an Army Officer began in the 38th Support Battalion (Main) where his succession of assignments included Electronic Equipment Maintenance Platoon Leader, Maintenance Control Officer, Assistant Battalion Support Operations Officer, and Company Commander. He then served as the Forward Support Company Commander for the 1-151 Infantry Battalion and later became the Logistics Officer (S4) for the 113th Brigade Support Battalion.
After attending the Engineer Captain’s Career Course, COL Roark aligned his civilian and military occupations; branch transferring to the Engineer Corps. Once an engineer officer, he was assigned as Engineer Services Officer at Camp Atterbury, followed by Executive Officer of the 113th Engineer Battalion, Director of Public Works at Camp Atterbury, Commander of the 113th Engineer Battalion, Executive Officer of the 219th Engineer Brigade, and currently serves as STEEL 6, the Commander of the 219th Engineer Brigade.
COL Roark earned his Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from Excelsior College, his Master of Science in Engineering Management from the Indiana Institute of Technology, and he is certified by the Project Management Institute and the Design Build Institute in project management. COL Roark is branch-qualified in the Ordnance Corps, Quartermaster Corps, and Engineer Regiment. He graduated from the Army War College in July 2023.
COL Roark has deployed in support of Operations Desert Storm, Iraqi Freedom, Enduring Freedom, and most recently Spartan Shield. He currently resides in Franklin, Indiana, where he and his wife Amy enjoy traveling and spending time with their three adult children and six grandchildren.
Nanci Visser, Director and Secretary
Nanci is a retired Marine lieutenant colonel with 13 years of active duty and 8 years of reserve duty. While on active duty from 1979 to 1988, she served in personnel and administrative billets in Virginia and Okinawa and as Administrative Officer to the Chief of Staff, Headquarters Marine Corps. As a reservist from 1988 to 1996, she drilled at various headquarters in Hawaii, Thailand, and Washington, DC, before returning to active duty in 1996 as Social Officer to the 31st Commandant of the Marine Corps.
After retiring in Portland, Oregon, Nanci joined the Marine Corps Coordinating Council (MCCC) of Oregon and Washington, the Marine Corps League, and the Women Marines Association (WMA). From 2001 to 2008, she served on the Board of Directors of the Military Officers Association of America (MOAA) while also serving as the Public Relations Officer for WMA from 2002 to 2004. Appointed by the Governor in 2009 to serve on the Advisory Committee to the Director of Oregon Department of Veterans Affairs (ODVA), Nanci was one of nine veterans appointed to provide counsel to the ODVA Director on veterans’ issues in the State of Oregon.
After moving back to Virginia in 2011, Nanci served on the Board of Directors of the National Association for Uniformed Services (NAUS) from 2012 to 2014. She is a life member of MOAA, a life member of WMA, a charter member of the Women in Military Service for America (WIMSA) Memorial, and an avid supporter of the 3/11 Foundation. Nanci and her husband, Eric, live in Alexandria, Virginia.
Barry Wortham, M.D., Director
San Antonio, TX
Barry Wortham, M.D., is a Board Certified Anesthesiologist practicing in San Antonio, Texas. A native of Amarillo, he received his undergraduate degree from North Texas State University in 1974 and his Doctor of Medicine degree from the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston in 1978. He did his Residency in Anesthesiology at Brooke Army Medical Center, Fort Sam Houston, Texas. He was discharged as a major after serving 6 years in the U.S. Army Medical Corps.
Marines have been an integral part of Barry’s life. His father and uncle (Pacific 1942-1945) were Marines. His closest friend was Edward Kliewer, the founder of the 3d Battalion, 11th Marines (3/11) Foundation.
An avid tennis fan, Barry volunteers with the Special Olympics and Adaptive/Wounded Warrior Programs sponsored by the San Antonio Tennis Association. Aside from his professional experience in service to others, his interest in the 3/11 Foundation is to honor the steadfast dedication of Edward Kliewer to the Corps and his legacy of support to Marine Wounded Warriors.
Joni Madolora, Adviser
A native of Salinas, Joni is, in a word, passionate. Whatever she does, she does it with her full heart. She graduated from the University of the Pacific in Stockton CA earning a BA in Communication Arts and a BA in Youth Agency Administration in 1978. She returned to Salinas and managed her family’s farm at the age of 21. She stayed in agriculture for seven years before getting into education in 1985 where she thrived as a Secondary School Teacher, Activity Director, and Administrator. After 32 years in education, she retired as a Secondary School Principal.
In recent years, Joni proudly became a Lady of the 3/11 Marines Association and Associate Member of the 711 Monterey Bay Marine Corps League Detachment because of her life partner, John Macias, who served with the Marines from 1967-1973. He is an active member of 3/11 Association and Past Commandant pf the 711 MCL Monterey Bay Detachment.
Richard “Dick” Popps, Adviser
San Antonio, Texas
Richard “Dick” Popps was commissioned a Marine second lieutenant in 1967 but was deferred from active duty for a year while in grad school at the University of Texas-Austin. After being trained as an artillery officer at Fort Sill, Oklahoma, Dick served in Vietnam with Golf Battery, 3d Battalion, 11th Marines (3/11) as both a Forward Observer and Battery Executive Officer. After Vietnam, Dick served 3 years as a Gunnery Instructor at Fort Sill before attending Amphibious Warfare School in Quantico, Virginia. He then went to Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, to serve as Commanding Officer of Golf Battery, 10th Marines before serving on the Regimental staff in the S-4 Office.
Dick’s career took a turn when he was assigned to the West Coast Field Supply and Maintenance Analysis Office (FSMAO) and thereafter changed his Military Occupational Specialty to Logistics and Supply. Then came tours as Officer in Charge of the General Account of the Supply Maintenance Unit, Camp Pendleton, California, and Executive Officer of Supply Battalion. On Okinawa, Dick served as the 3d Marine Division Supply Officer. After Okinawa, Dick spent 4 years at Marine Corps Logistics Base Albany, Georgia, and 3 years as Director, Materiel Division at Barstow, California. Dick retired in 1990 as a lieutenant colonel following heart bypass surgery.
After a short convalescence in San Antonio, Texas, Dick served on the contractor staff working on the USMC Maritime Preposition Ships (MPS) in Blount Island, Florida. Upon his return to San Antonio, Dick did a variety of things “to support greens fees,” including General Manager of a public warehouse, Instructor in Logistics Management at a community college, teaching computer classes to seniors in adult education programs, Volleyball Referee with the Texas Association of Sports Officials, and Property Manager for both a townhouse complex and a high-rise condominium building.
Dick has two children and five grandchildren who are all alive and well in Austin, Texas.
Eric Visser, Adviser
Eric Visser is a retired Marine colonel who enlisted in the Marine Corps in February 1963. He served with 3d Battalion, 11th Marines in Vietnam from August 1967 to December 1968, commanding Golf Battery for the final 7 months.
Eric retired in May 1996 after more than 33 years of service, including 4 years as a gunnery instructor and branch chief at Fort Sill, Oklahoma, from 1976 to 1980 and command of 3d Battalion, 12th Marines on Okinawa from 1983 to 1984. Eric served as the Fleet Marine Officer for the Commander in Chief, U.S. Pacific Fleet in Hawaii from 1988 to 1992 and as the Operations Director for the Joint United States Military Advisory Group, Thailand (JUSMAGTHAI) in Bangkok from 1992 to 1995. His final posting was as Deputy Director of Operations, Headquarters Marine Corps from 1995 to 1996.
After retirement, Eric and family moved to Portland, Oregon, where from 1999 to 2011, he was a member of the Marine Corps Coordinating Council (MCCC) of Oregon and Washington and served several terms as the MCCC’s Vice President. For 6 years, he also coordinated the MCCC-sponsored Semper Fi Golf Classic, a charity golf tournament.
Eric has supported the 3/11 Foundation since its beginnings and has served as an adviser since 2014. He and his wife, Nanci, live in Alexandria, Virginia.