Seen and Heard on the ND campus


Author: Notre Dame Magazine staff

During the July 7 terrorist bombings in London, law student Patrick Roach got off an Underground train that was headed to a station where an explosion would occur a few minutes later. When he got back to his apartment he found a bomb had gone off on a double-decker bus in front of his building. A police officer escorted him through the bloody scene to his door and told him to stay inside. Roach said he had been taking the Tube to the King’s Cross station, site of an explosion that involved trains on three different lines. He was going there to buy tickets for an amusement park. At the last second he decided to get off at an earlier station and go to the Notre Dame London Centre near Trafalgar Square. He was in London taking law classes. . . . Junior Raquel Elena “Rocky” Garza won the first College Football Hall of Fame Enshrinement Queen Pageant. The hall of fame is located in downtown South Bend. Among the questions posed to her during the judging was how many yards does it take to make a first down. She answered correctly, 10. . . . The teachers-of-the-year award winners for 2004-05 were: Arts and Letters, Gail Bederman (history) and William Ramsey (philosophy); Science, Randal C. Ruchti (physics); Engineering, Jesus A. Izaguirre (computer science and engineering); Business, Timothy Loughran (finance). . . . Jean Joseph Dorvil, a Haitian grad student who served as an administrator for the University’s program to eliminate the disfiguring disease lymphatic filariasis in Haiti, was killed last December by Haitian rebel insurgents near Port-au-Price. Now the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation has established a scholarship program in his memory. The $175,000 Jean Joseph Dorvil Award will support scholarships for students of Haitian descent seeking Notre Dame degrees or participating in various educational initiatives. Dorvil had been pursuing a Master of Science in Administration from Notre Dame. . . . Readers who looked at the cover of this magazine’s summer issue and marveled at the scaffolding erected around the Dome for the regilding may be interested to learn that a Notre Dame mechanical engineering alum, Joseph Puccinelli ‘56, invented and patented that particular scaffolding system. . . . An editorial printed in the South Bend Tribune on Father Malloy’s last day as president (June 30) recited the many accomplishments and signs of growth at the University during his 18-year tenure. The editors noted that the accomplishments were not Monk’s alone, but they said Monk deserved sole credit at least for one feat: improving relations between Notre Dame and the surrounding community. “Once upon a time, the word ‘aloof’ would come up in connection with the campus north of town,” the city paper wrote. “Malloy observed the chill in the relationship between ‘town and gown’ and set out to warm it up.” . . . It may be cooling already. The South Bend Common Council sent a letter to University officials earlier this year asking Notre Dame to share in the cost of traffic control for a seventh home game the Irish will add in 2006. The city estimates it will cost an extra $16,000 to pay traffic cops. A University spokesman said it’s the responsibility of the city and county to keep roadways open beyond the campus. He also noted that the games bring millions of dollars to the community in the form of business revenues and taxes. . . . This year marks the 100th anniversary of the Dome yearbook. The editor of the very first Dome, 1906, was Charles L. O’Donnell, later the Rev. Charles L. O’Donnell, CSC, 11th president of Notre Dame. Walter Smith edited the 1926 edition. He later became a legendary sports columnist in New York under the nickname Red. The 100th anniversary edition will be only Volume 97 of the Dome because wars prevented publication in 1919 and 1944-46. The oldest living former Dome editor is Lou Hruby ‘35, age 91. . . . *Responding to the NCAA’s decision* to ban Indian-associated and other team mascots and nicknames deemed hostile and abusive, the Chicago Tribune_’s Mike Downey fired off a tongue-in-cheek column calling for euthanasia of the Notre Dame leprechaun. Describing himself as a proud Irish American, Downey also called on the NCAA to “put an end to the degradation of this ‘Fighting Irish’ slur once and for all. A lot of us don’t fight. Well, I did toss a guy out of a bar in Greece last summer, but he was drunker than I was.” . . . Columnist Paola Boivin of The Arizona Republic_ endorsed the NCAA’s decision on mascots but said Notre Dame’s should be exempt because it’s a mythical creature. “The Cleveland Indians’ Chief Wahoo is a buck-toothed, faced-painted representative of a real group of people that lost their land and then their dignity,” she wrote. “The Fighting Irish’s leprechaun is, well, a leprechaun.” . . . Speaking of leprechauns, two women driving around the Joyce Center this August asked a Notre Dame employee where the statue of Regis Philbin was. They said Philbin had mentioned it on his show. The employee assured them that Regis probably was joking; no such statue exists on campus. Yet. . . . If Carl “Bud” Schmitt keeps his streak alive—and he intends to—by the end of this football season he will have attended every Notre Dame home football game the last 50 years. What makes the record even more impressive is that he lives in East Peoria, Illinois, more than 200 miles from South Bend. Schmitt, 80, says he was raised Catholic and thinks he first became interested in Notre Dame football because Benny Sheridan, a player for the Irish in the 1930s, was from Havana, Illinois, not far from East Peoria. Schmitt saw his first game in Notre Dame Stadium in 1950, and it was not an auspicious occasion. The Irish lost 28-14 to Purdue, ending an undefeated streak covering four entire seasons. Schmitt named his son Ara after former coach Ara Parseghian. . . . BallPark Pens makes pens out of wooden seats and benches removed from historic ball parks. Though it doesn’t offer Notre Dame Stadium pens through its website (, the company says it does have a supply of wooden bench material from the stadium (with certificate of authenticity) and will turn it into a polished wood writing instrument for $50 for the wood plus $35 for the turning. Contact William Hartel, . . . Brother Roger, the 90-year-old founder of the Christian ecumenical Taize Community who won the 1996 Notre Dame Award, was stabbed to death during a worship service in Burgundy in August. Witnesses said a woman with a knife killed the monk during a prayer service at the Taize Community, known worldwide for its promotion of peace. The Notre Dame Award was established in 1992 in celebration of the University’s Sesquicentennial. It honors persons “within and without the Catholic Church, citizens of every nation, whose religious faith has quickened learning, whose learning has engendered deeds, and whose deeds give witness to God’s kingdom among us.” At the presentation ceremony honoring Brother Roger, Father Malloy remarked that he was always delighted to meet a fellow “monk.” . . . A student tour guide was showing a troop of Boy Scouts around campus this past summer when it began to storm. The guide, carrying the only umbrella, ushered the group into a nearby building and teased the scouts about not being prepared for the storm. After a few minutes, the troop leader recommended continuing the tour. The guide led the group back out into the downpour. When she turned around to face them, she found each was wearing a rain poncho, and several had umbrellas.

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