From the Arbor | News for November from Jerry Weakley
As you will read and view in pictorial form inside this issue of the Arbor, the University had a most memorable Homecoming celebration that included not only the annual induction of six great athletes and coaches into the Athletic Hall of Fame and a gathering of more than 100 former football players in honor of Baker’s 120th year of playing football but also wins by the football team and the women’s and men’s soccer teams. In addition to these activities, this year’s Homecoming also just happened to fall on another important University milestone, one that will continue to be celebrated through the years on anniversaries of significance, the opening of the Clarice Osborne Chapel.
Just 14 years before, in 1996, the University officially opened and dedicated the Osborne Chapel, which had been moved stone by stone in crates from its original home in Sproxton, England. As many of you no doubt remember, the evening before the on-campus dedication was to take place, the area received something in excess of seven inches of snow. The campus trees still bearing the leaves born in the spring were overmatched by the additional weight of the moisture-laden snow and many came crashing down all around campus just hours before some 4,000 to 6,000 guests and visitors would arrive to participate in the ceremony and to hear the dedicatory words of Lady Margaret Thatcher. (I can never reflect upon this event without remembering the extraordinary work done by our buildings and grounds crews throughout the night to clear away the carnage and to prepare the campus for the service that was in fact able to be held outside the chapel the next morning.)
A chapel service on Homecoming morning this year was organized by the Minister to the University, Rev. Dr. Ira DeSpain, ’70, in part as recognition of that original event. Those attending that chapel service had the opportunity to view a video that was prepared some years ago that chronicles the movement and reestablishment of the historic chapel as a place of worship at Baker. It was a wonderful and reflective moment for me personally. It forced me to reach back and draw upon not only this, but also on so many other wonderful memories connected to “High University” moments in which I have actively participated and enjoyed, not only as a student, but also throughout my professional career here at Baker. For me, it was a marvelous way to start a day dedicated to other milestones, achievements, competition and friends!
If you have memories you would like to share of a similar type of event or moment that occurred while you were a student, share them below.
Access this month’s edition of the Arbor. I hope you will find something in it that will entertain or further engage you with our University!
Jerry Weakley ’70/MBA ’92