Members from the class of 1964 returned to the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources (CANR) on Tuesday, April 29, to celebrate their 50th reunion.
Wesley Towers, who majored in animal and poultry health during his time at UD, said that Mark Rieger, CANR dean, took him by surprise when he first brought up the idea of a 50th reunion at the annual CANR holiday party.
“Mark Rieger stunned me at the Ag holiday party when he said, ‘Hey, I’d like you to stop in sometime when you’re up here for the trustees meeting and I want to talk with you about your 50th anniversary’ and I said, ‘What? 50?’ He said, ‘I’m doing the math, right? 1964 and 2014?’ And I thought, Jiminy Christmas. I can’t believe it.”
Rieger said that he wanted to make this an annual event for every graduating class and that it made perfect sense to start with the class of 1964.
“We thought because there are so many incredible people in the class of ‘64, that we would start an annual tradition of a 50th anniversary. Next year it’s going to be the class of ‘65, the following year will be the class of ‘66,” said Rieger. He told the class, “We’re very proud of you and what you’ve been able to accomplish and we’re very glad that you’re back. This is a day about you and hopefully you’ll see some things on campus that you haven’t seen in a number of years.”
Those in attendance were greeted by CANR Ag Ambassadors and had breakfast with Rieger and members of the CANR community.
After breakfast, the participants took a tour of the CANR facilities, looking at the farm, the dairy, the farmhouse and the UDairy Creamery.
The class then enjoyed lunch in Townsend Hall, as Rieger talked to them about the strategic direction of the college.
They finished up the day by touring the Science, Technology and Advanced Research (STAR) campus.
As for what’s changed around CANR since they were students, Towers, who went on to serve as the Delaware State Veterinarian for 37 and a half years and serves on the UD Board of Trustees, said that there was no Worrilow Hall when they attended and that the farmhouse on UD’s farm was used as a dormitory.
He also noted that all of his classmates revered George M. Worrilow, dean of the College from 1954-1965.
“My favorite memories will always be the Dean of Agriculture, Dr. Worrilow. He just took a personal interest in each and every one of the students. He wanted to see you succeed and stay. Of course, he was dean, but he really oversaw everything and made everything personal. That’s why it means so much to those of us who have received the Worrilow Award,” said Towers, who received the Worrilow award in 1990 and was also named a UD outstanding alumnus.
The members of the class of 1964 in attendance included:
Dr. Frederick W Kutz
H. Terry Johnson
Kenneth D. Stattel
Dr. William H. Mark
Dr. and Mrs. Wes Towers (Sara)
Dr. John K. Rosenberger and Dr. Sandra S. Rosenberger
Mr. and Mrs. Keith H. Carlisle (Carol)
Mr. and Mrs. Robert J. Wheatley (Billie)
Mr. and Mrs. T. Harold Palmer, Jr. (Carol)
Mr. and Mrs. Robert S. Michener (Helen)
Article by Adam Thomas