“A Profound Influence”
I want to extend my belated thanks to Jean Williams H’53 for her remembrance of Professor John Douglas Forbes [WM Winter 2018].
While I was never as close to John Forbes as some of his students, he had a profound influence on my career and my life. I came to Wabash in 1952 with the vague expectation that I might pursue one of the natural sciences, an illusion preserved by early success in introductory courses in biology and chemistry until calculus painfully showed me the limits of my talents.
But Professor Forbes’ Western Civilization and Art History classes opened a new world of interests, and by the time he invited me to serve as editorial assistant (a rather glorified title) on the Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians, I was hooked on history.
Although he moved on before I graduated, the Wabash history department took over the nurturing he had begun. Professor Jack Long got me a teaching assistantship at SMU which ultimately led to a PhD from the University of Chicago.
I learned from Professor Forbes that you don’t have to become a hedgehog to have an academic career, and I am particularly proud that libraries have classified my three books under widely different headings: history, sociology, and philosophy. Although I never developed a professional interest in art and architectural history, my library is full of works in those subjects, especially of catalogs from the many exhibitions I was fortunate to have seen, and I drew great pleasure from designing and serving as general contractor for a house my wife Carol and I enjoyed for several years.
Even in the unlikely event that I imitate Professor Forbes by living to be 107, I will never forget the difference he and Wabash made in my life.
William Logue ’56
Professor Emeritus of History,
Northern Illinois University
Thank you for another excellent Wabash Magazine. Of particular interest this time around were the poems by Bert Stern [What I Got for a Dollar]. He was my main mentor and primary influence. In addition to attributing the credit for any success I have had to the Wabash faculty, I can isolate many lessons learned, sensitivities developed, capacities increased, and life purposes brought into focus as a result of my time listening to, engaging with, and learning from Bert.
So I was immensely gratified to learn of and engage with his latest round of perceptive brilliance. I ordered the book yesterday.
David Shane ’70
Returning home after a harrowing day of numerous unpleasantries, I was delighted to see WM Spring/Summer 2018 waiting for me! Another great issue with a wide variety of personal stories, extensive class news items, and interesting campus notes.
I especially enjoyed the story on Coach Francis Cayou [“Triumph and Tragedy: Coach Francis Cayou’s Last Game,” by David Phillips H’83].
Duane Hile ’67
University Heights, OH
Impressed with Students
I don’t believe I have ever read an entire issue of Wabash Magazine cover to cover the way I did WM Spring/Summer 2018. I am entranced by the opportunities that Wabash students have through their internships and immersion programs and so impressed with what some of them are doing.
When we asked our readers to send us their favorite lines from a movie or TV show, some of the stories were even better than the lines. Here’s one:
I have two quotes wrapped in a story about how I met my wife, Cathy.
At a wedding reception, I noticed this lady and got her number from her sister. At the time, I’d been taking in quite a few movies as a bachelor. I called her up and asked her out for dinner and a movie. There seemed to be a long pause with no answer, so I, joking, said “Cathy, Congress doesn’t take this long to make a decision.” (a line from the movie American President.) Cathy responded by saying, You want to date me. ‘You think I’m gorgeous. You want to kiss me’” (the famous line from Miss Congeniality). I laughed like crazy; I knew right away this was a woman I wanted to see as often as I could. It turned out Cathy watched a lot of movies, too.
We still laugh today about that first phone call.
Joe Phelan ’69
Lady Lake, FL