Virginia Tech Corps of Cadets alumnus Capt. J. Art De Laura, U.S. Air Force who earned a degree in history from the College of Liberal Arts and Human Sciences and a minor in leadership studies from the Virginia Tech Corps of Cadets Rice Center for Leader Development in 2009 was selected as the Hokie Hero for the football game versus Purdue University.

The Virginia Tech Corps of Cadets Hokie Hero program started in 2006 by IMG College, honors Virginia Tech Corps of Cadets alumni who are currently deployed. Recipients of this honor are highlighted by Jon Laaser and Mike Burnop during the radio broadcast of Virginia Tech football games, on the Corps of Cadets website and in the Corps Review magazine.

De Laura is currently deployed for seven months to Kabul, Afghanistan, as a member of the Combined Security Transition Command in support of Operation Resolute Support.

He serves as the Officer in Charge of Foreign Military Sales Air and Ground Movement. The work De Laura and his team does is critical, as it provides the ability to supply and equip the Afghan National Army and Police, thus contributing directly to the peace and security for the Afghan people.

De Laura of Springfield, Virginia, and is a Class of 2009 graduate of the Virginia Tech Corps of Cadets. As a senior, De Laura was the Drum Major of the Highty-Tighties and during his time in the Corps was also a member of the Arnold Air Society.

He says he sends his love to his wife, Kacie, and one and a half year old son, Caleb, and regards to all his buddies and the Hokie Nation.