When the war ended, Gammon was assigned to Army headquarters in Paris, where his linguistic training continued to be critical to his duties. “I lived in an old hotel across the street from the Louvre—a rough deal!” he recalled with a chuckle. “We were responsible for all of the property that had been requisitioned by the government, including the top of the Eiffel Tower. It was under a reverse lend-lease from the French, and we had a radio station there. Later, I liked to tell people that I used to own the top of the Eiffel Tower. That kept my French friends respectful!”
In 1946, Gammon returned to Texas A&M to finish his degree in history, then hurried to New Jersey to pursue advanced degrees at Princeton University. He spent a year in London doing research for his Ph.D. dissertation, and it was there that he met a beautiful brunette named Mary from Philadelphia who became his wife and traveling companion for the next 51 years.
After Princeton, Gammon spent two years teaching while studying for the Foreign Service exams; after passing, he enjoyed the next 27 years as a diplomat. “I was posted in Italy, France, Ethiopia—that was my favorite—Mauritius and Washington, D.C. It was a great career. I met four U.S. presidents, three French presidents, two Italian presidents, the emperor of Ethiopia, the Shah of Iran and one pope,” he said. During those years, he also served in the Korean War, but was not called to active duty since his brother had been killed during the previous war and he was the only son remaining in the Gammon family.
Looking back on his career experiences, Gammon said he has no regrets. “Mary and I had a delightful time in the Foreign Service. We had a lot of fun traveling the world together, and I’m grateful for the experiences at Texas A&M that started it all.”
Interested in using a planned gift to benefit your family and leave your footprint in Aggieland? Contact Kevin Westerman ’11 using the form below, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call (979) 845-5638.
Have you already included a gift to Texas A&M in your will or living trust? Contact us today at email@example.com so that we can recognize your gift and offer you Heritage Membership.
Bequests: A Future GIFT
After a distinguished career, Gammon wanted to make a gift for the future that recognized the role Texas A&M played in his life and honored his father. Through the Texas A&M Foundation, he created a bequest in his estate that will establish the Gammon Family Endowment in History to be used at the discretion of the department head of history. For years to come, this gift will aid in the department’s pursuit of excellence in teaching and research.
A charitable bequest is one of the easiest ways to leave a lasting impact in Aggieland. A bequest may be made in a will or trust and allows you to retain assets during your lifetime. In addition to the support it provides to Texas A&M, a bequest can also lessen your family’s tax burdens.
Bequests can be established as a percentage of your total estate, a specific asset, or a set amount from the balance of your estate. With the help of an advisor, you can simply include language in your will or trust specifying a gift be made to the Texas A&M Foundation as part of your estate plan.