Editor’s note: At the end of the year, The Log staff dedicated the yearbook to former faculty member Brian Crockett and History and Global Studies teacher Peter Gunn. The following was Mr. Gunn’s response at assembly.
This is incredible. This has been a year of incredible challenges for our community and I think we’ve been brought through it because of the leadership of the Class of 2014, an incredible, exceptional, and dynamic group.
Let me first say that it is a humbling to be recognized and share recognition in this book with Brian Crockett, an outstanding teacher, who I think we all know had he not been taken from us so soon, would be recognized in this way again and again in the future. When Mr. McKillop spoke of his affection for Brian, and what it felt like in losing him, he said it was like losing a brother, and I think that’s something that I know many of us understand and I certainly understand it deeply. And I want to say to you that the compassion and the generosity the Class of 2014 has manifest for me, for my family, for Mr. Crockett’s family and for all the people in this community this year stands above all the other extraordinary accomplishments—artistic, athletic, personal—it’s just extraordinary what you have done and I guess I would like to leave you with a thought.
My brother would stay to me, when I’d be frustrated that I wasn’t teaching well enough or coaching well enough or I wasn’t doing something the way I wanted to do it here, he would say to me, “Just be good at who you are.” And I think I would say to the Class of 2014, that your success has come from being good at who you are.
You are good. And you are special to me. And I thank you very much.
Editor’s note: Charles Lindberg Hanson ’48 was inducted into the Williston Northampton Athletic Hall of Fame on Saturday, June 7, 2014 during Reunion weekend. Classmate Stanley Gedney ’48 gave the following acceptance speech during the ceremony.
Extraordinary Athlete, Tough Competitor, Exceptional Friend
Charles Lindberg Hanson was born on the same day that Charles Lindberg touched down in France after making his historic trans-Atlantic solo flight. His parents were so impressed, they named their son after the international hero.
Although Lindy Hanson did not achieve the notoriety of his namesake, he did achieve athletic prominence at Abington High School (MA), Williston Academy, and, later, Boston University. At Abington, Lindy was one of the few football players to gain unanimous All-Scholastic honors, as well as honors in baseball and basketball.
Editor’s note: Deborah Healy Gilmore ’91 was inducted into the Williston Northampton Athletic Hall of Fame on Saturday, June 7, 2014 during Reunion weekend. Coach Ray Brown ’55 gave the following introduction during the ceremony.
What a pleasure it is to be up here on this stage to present a top scholar-athlete for induction to the Williston Hall of Fame! Debbie Healy set a very high standard in terms of her performance on the tennis and basketball courts and in the classroom.
As her tennis coach, John Kahane, talked to me a while back. He was excited to tell “… of her 6 varsity letters in that sport. Beyond her success in terms of victories, her demeanor on the court and her rapport with her teammates was extraordinary.” John was also quick to point out that Debbie lost only two regular-season matches in her entire career at Williston, both to the same opponent, once in her 7th grade year and once in the 8th grade. She then went on to win all of her singles matches for the next four years and topped off her prep tennis career winning the New England Championship! Debbie went on to play four years of tennis at Dartmouth and ended her career there as the Team Captain and All-Ivy League in both singles and doubles.
Editor’s note: Dan Carpenter Sr. was inducted into the Williston Northampton Athletic Hall of Fame on Saturday, June 7, 2014 during Reunion weekend. Dan Carpenter, Jr. gave the following acceptance speech during the ceremony.
On behalf of the Carpenter family and with great thanks to the Williston community, I am honored to accept this award in memory of Dan Carpenter. If he were here today, he would likely downplay all the public acknowledgement, but I can assure you that inside he would be immensely proud and deeply touched by the recognition—as well as the opportunity to be among so many friends.
From a very early age, Dan developed a healthy, lifelong interest in sports and physical activity. In the past few months, we have uncovered photographs of a four-year-old boy in his first baseball uniform, baseball in hand and faithful dog by his side. When the older kids in the neighborhood weren’t available to play catch, Dan would throw the ball for the dog to bring back, and they would play for hours. As he got older, pick-up games of all kinds were common in the neighborhood. And when the school system didn’t offer hockey as an organized sport, Dan and a group of high school friends formed a club they called the Maple Leaf Gang. They built a rink on a friend’s tennis court and organized their own games there. And at South Kent School, he lettered in three sports, was captain of the football and baseball teams, and was awarded the trophy for the best all-around athlete in the senior class. As soon as he learned to read, he became an avid fan of the sports page in the newspaper, so he could study every detail in the box scores of his beloved Philadelphia A’s, Green Bay Packers, and Toronto Maple Leafs—a habit he maintained throughout his life.
It is wonderful to be back on this beautiful campus and truly an honor to be here under these circumstances. There are so many familiar faces and old friends here tonight. When Jeff Pilgrim informed me that I would be given the opportunity to speak tonight, I started to think about how I say something about the six years I spent at Williston in 5-10 minutes. While mulling it over, I realized that my feelings about the experiences I had here could be summed up in one word: Gratitude.
First, I am grateful for Tom Bly. As Tom mentioned, I came to a lot of home meets as a spectator when I was in grade school. I got to see some of the original wrestlers: Nate Zwirko, Chris Root, James Zurcher, and Jun Son. What he may not remember is that at one of those matches, he came up into the bleachers to introduce himself to me. To have this fiery coach in the corner come tell me, a weak little kid with a blond bowl cut, that he was excited to have me come wrestle for him was the start of something special. Bly was a wrestling fanatic, and would take us all over, as far as Fargo, North Dakota, to train and compete with the best. And he was invested in his athletes as people. When I get together with the old guys from the wrestling team, Bly inevitably comes up, and we always agree that we are better men today for having come under his guidance. Tom Bly was like a third parent to me, and I am forever grateful for his influence on my life. I will always look to him as a role model and a friend.