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JACKSON, Tenn. – Feb. 15, 2003– Homecoming 2003 blended tradition, heritage and worship, producing a uniquely Union experience.
The Founder’s Day Chapel honored the Class of 1953 with 50-year reunion medallions and featured Fisher Humphreys, professor of divinity at Beeson Divinity School of Samford University.
In his “Institutional Ways of honoring the Fifth Commandment” address, Humphreys outlined the history and development of Christian doctrine and denominations, emphasizing the contributions of Union alumni and faculty who have impacted Baptist life.
Thirty-five participants in Union’s football program, which last fielded a team during the 1952-53 academic year, attended the Saturday Feb. 15 Alumni Awards Luncheon and Homecoming basketball games where they and coach Robert Jelks were honored. Jelks, a former player himself, was Union’s final football coach.
On Wednesday, Feb. 12, Christian recording artist Bebo Norman performed during chapel and at a coffeehouse in Coburn Dining Hall that evening. The show was attended by more than 600 students, staff and alumni.
A tailgate party sponsored by the Freshman Council preceded Thursday’s basketball victories. The Bulldogs defeated Lambuth University 74-59 and the Lady Bulldogs defeated the Lady Eagles 82-66. Following the games, students enjoyed the traditional bonfire complete with hot chocolate and s’mores.
All-Sing performances drew a packed house Friday Feb. 14, in the G. M. Savage Memorial Chapel. Zeta Tau Alpha sorority won the large group competition, and Lambda Chi Alpha fraternity took first place the small group category.
Saturday’s events included the recognition of this year’s Alumni Award winners during the Alumni Reunion luncheon. Russell Wayne Mayfield, who attended Union during the 1940’s, received the Distinguished Service Award.
Jackson resident Jane Betts, a ‘74 Union graduate and registrar for the university, received the Distinguished Faculty/Staff Award. Teresa Luna, a 1979 graduate of Union, received the Distinguished Alumnus Award.
Kevin Troy Sheilley, a 1994 graduate of Union, received the Outstanding Young Achiever Award. Wayne and Greta Pearson from Powell, Tenn. received the Honorary Alumnus/Alumna Award.
At halftime of the Lady Bulldogs 116-54 victory over Blue Mountain College, Reagan Carfield was crowned Homecoming Queen 2003, and the Presidential Cup was awarded to the Zeta Tau Alpha sorority for outstanding performance in the week’s activities. Later, the Bulldogs defeated Hannibal-LaGrange College 66-51.
The closing event of Homecoming weekend was the annual Cardinal Ball, which was held at the Four Points by Sheraton in Jackson. This traditional ball had an 18-piece band followed by a deejay.
By Tracie Holden
Class of 2004