Festive Spirit Rules at Concord Alumni Banquet and Homecoming

For Immediate Release: 
Oct 10 2003

Festive Spirit Rules at Concord Alumni Banquet and Homecoming

Athens, W. Va. - The Concord College marching band proudly walked through the College Center playing the College’s fight song as alumni and friends of the college gathered for the annual alumni banquet on Friday.


Concord alumnus, Joe Friedl, class of 1962, served as emcee and welcomed friends of the College. He introduced the 15th Civilian Training Detachment members who gathered for a week’s worth of activities that included tours and military ceremonies. The College served as a training venue during World War II.

Margaret Ann Scott provided the invocation and guests enjoyed a buffet dinner prepared by ARAMARK.

Concord College Alumni Association President, Dr. Beryle Crockett Santon, class of 1950, also welcomed the former cadets and thanked friends and employees of the College for their continued support of the alumni association and attending the banquet.

“Thank you for your support of us during this budget crisis,” commented President Jerry Beasley.

Special guest speakers included Dr. Joseph Marsh, Concord president emeritus, who served in the United States Navy as a gunnery officer aboard the USS Hale (DD) 642 and Mr. Harry Finkelman, Concord professor of business emeritus, who served in the United States Air Force as a radio operator/gunner on a B24 Bomber (39 missions) with additional remarks by Robert Kyle, Concord professor of health and physical education emeritus and the drill instructor for the CTD (Civilian Training Detachment) Cadets as well as other military installations.

Getting in the spirit of the military theme, President Emeritus Joe Marsh stated that, “I have been ‘ordered’ to say a few words by our alumni association president.” He shared memories of the town of Athens, including the telephone exchange operator and Litton’s barbershop, where many cadets “had” to visit. “Let’s be thankful that we’re still around to enjoy family and friends,” stated Marsh. “God bless America.”

Harry Finkelman talked about his war experiences and noted that, “The Army made a man of me.”

Tom France, former CTD from Suffern, N.Y., introduced former coach, Robert “Killer” Kyle, who just celebrated his 90th birthday.

“I felt very proud to be a part of this group,” stated Kyle. “We were told we ‘must’ get these young men physically fit.”

Having grown up in Athens as the son of a coach, Joe Friedl spoke of his memories of the small town and the relation of Concord to the military, beginning with the College’s first principal, who was an officer in the Confederate army.

Alumni “Yankee” chapter President, Robert J. Gallione, class of 1968, invited the Beasleys to attend a Yankee baseball game and provided baseball hats as souvenirs. Speaking of Coach Kyle, Gallione said, “Kyle pushed us because he was trying to make something of us.”

The Concord College Brass Quintet provided dinner music for the banquet and the Concord Commanders played special musical selections after the banquet.


Hollywood couldn’t have produced a more perfect day for this year’s homecoming stated one observer. Blue skies, russet trees, and a slight breeze contributed to a perfect day for the College’s Homecoming celebration as the stadium filled for the game between the Mountain Lions and the Yellow Jackets of West Virginia State College.

During pre-game activities, the College honored the CTD and the football team from 1953, for their 50th-year anniversary.

Legions of volunteers and scores of College personnel attended to the details of providing an enjoyable setting for Homecoming festivities.

Homecoming king and queen for 2003 were Harshit Agarwal of West Bengal, India, representing the International Students Club and Dorothy Smith of Roanoke, Va., representing the Black Student Union.

Second attendants were Matt Jozik of Martinsburg, W.Va., representing Mu Xi Phi and Melanie Daniels of Crab Orchard, W.Va., representing Sigma Sigma Sigma.

Third place went to Jason Castle of Fayetteville, W.Va., representing Phi Sigma Phi and Miranda Tilley of Pineville, W.Va., representing Delta Zeta.

Other candidates for homecoming were: Nick Comas of Gaithersburg, Md., representing Pi Kappa Phi and Krista Carter of Elkins, W.Va., representing Lady 8s; Chris Brown of Mabscott, W.Va., representing Tau Kappa Epsilon and Stephanie Kopp of Clarksburg, W.Va., representing Alpha Sigma Alpha and Velden Benton Linn III of Washington, W.Va., representing Sigma Tau Gamma and Laura “Sarge” Sergent of Culloden, W.Va., representing Alpha Sigma Alpha.



(1) President Emeritus, Dr. Joseph Marsh

(2) Professor Emeritus Harry Finkelman

(3) Former Coach Robert “Killer” Kyle

(4) President and Mrs. Beasley

(5) Concord College Homecoming Queen Dorothy Smith of Roanoke, Va., representing the Black Student Union, and King Harshit Agarwal of West Bengal, India, representing the International Students Club

(6) Homecoming King and Queen jump for joy.