Rogers Blood

Graduating class of 1940

Rogers Blood was a popular all-around high school athlete. In his extensive activities about the school, he displayed rare qualities as a leader, scholar, organizer, athlete and all-around good fellow. Rogers served as president of the Hi-Y Chapter, president of the Maskers, editor-in-chief of the Oracle, moderator of the Discussion Club, and was a member of both the tennis and ski teams. He was awarded the Rotary Cup in his senior year as the most outstanding student in his class. Rogers then entered Dartmouth College, Class of 1944. On January 3, 1942, just weeks after Pearl Harbor, he enlisted in the United States Marine Corps Reserve and received a commission as a second lieutenant. Promoted to first lieutenant the following year, he saw combat in the Pacific Theater. Rogers was killed in action in February, 1944, leading his men against the enemy on Engebi Island, Eniwetok Atoll in the Marshall Islands. Tragically, Rogers' brother Nickerson, "36A, a lieutenant in the U.S. Army Air Corps, had been killed in the line of duty in January, 1943. Ironically, Rogers had established an English award at Central in memory of his brother a few months before he himself was killed. Now each year, the Rogers Blood award is made to a deserving graduating Central High School senior in memory of Nickerson Blood. Rogers Blood was posthumously awarded the silver star for conspicuous gallantry. His memory was honored further when the U.S. Navy named a troop transport, the APD 115, for him. When this vessel was decommissioned, the ship's bell was loaned to the school by the Navy Department with the understanding that it would be kept on permanent display at the school in a place of prominence. It continues on display to this day.