3. CNU's Sixth President and First Lady: Admiral William (Bill) Kelly and Wife, Angie.
4. Dr. Michael Engs Featured in First Book about African American Students at William and Mary.
5. August 2022 Wedding Anniversaries of Three First Decade Couple, by Miss Marple, Sleuth Extraodinaire.
6. Cartoons: Has Spring Sprung?
We welcome your FEEDBACK. Send to firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com.
Published March 24, 2022
Our Latin Calendar: March
by A. Jane Chambers
February (Latin Februarius: "of " or "pertaining to" Februa) was the month sacred to the ancient god Februus , whose name means "purifier." To the ancient Romans, March was the beginning of the year, and February was the end of the year--thus the logical time to be rid of the old before welcoming the new. Romans purified themselves and their city and appeased the dead with sacrifices and offerings during yearly festivals called Februalia (plural of Februa)--cleansing rituals which took place in mid-February. Such rituals were thought to drive out evil spirits and purify the city, thus bringing about renewed health and fertility.
The month of February is probably named more for the festival than for the god Februus. Our traditions of Spring Cleaning and New Year's Resolutions possibly grew out of ancient rituals like these.
The news that CNU’s sixth president had been chosen broke on February 2, 2023, with announcements and articles everywhere. The photo above, taken at CNU, was in Norfolk’s Virginia-Pilot and the Peninsula’s Daily Press, both owned by Chicago based Tronc Inc. Simultaneously, CNU published a very detailed article, “The Admiral Becomes A Captain,” written by Kelley McGee, CNU’s Director of Public Relations.
The two CNU photos above are the only photos of the Admiral and his wife in this first CNU NEWS article, dated February 2, 2023--the first day of the couple’s three-day campus visit, filled with greetings, meetings, and orientation, and many more photographs. The article next gives readers official head shot photos of all six CNC/CNU leaders in the section called OUR PRESIDENTS. Immediately after that is a final section titled QUICK FACTS, in which writer Kelley McGee adds eleven more interesting details about our next president's background.
On February 6, CNU published a second article, titled “Behind the Scenes: Announcing the Sixth President of Christopher Newport University.” It is a slide show type of article, with 24 photos taken by CNU photographers during the Kelly’s campus visit February 2 - 4. The photographs move automatically and quickly, with brief captions, recording the visit “from before the big announcement through the end of the men’s basketball game on Saturday.”
All photographs and almost all information are from Facebook posting.
Editor’s Note: Miss Marple is back! Having retired from major sleuthing, she’s volunteered to help us again solve more mysteries related to our First Decaders. The mystery this time is not “Who Are These Unidentified People in CNC'S Tridents?” but “What news are our members sharing on Facebook but not on our website?” Granted access to your editor’s Facebook and Email, Miss Marple has focused first on the subject of Wedding Anniversaries. We hope her reporting on these three long-term marriages will inspire readers to send us news (with a few photos) about their events of interest--anniversaries, travels, awards, promotions, best (or worst) new experiences (like hot air ballooning)--or anything else worth sharing. Meanwhile, let’s welcome Miss Marple!
Hello once more CNC alumni and other readers of this website. I am delighted to be with you again via modern technology linking us “across the pond” (a quaint Americanism). Pictured above is the wedding party of Marie Boudreau (AA degree, CNC,1966) and Brian Smith, who met as teachers at the same school in Hampton, VA. Next to the bride is her sister, Dianne Boudreau (later Loftus), her maid of honor and source of some details here, including the wedding date: August 10, 1976. Like her sister, Mrs. Loftus and her husband, Mike Loftus (now deceased) were also CNC First Decaders.
CLOSE TO 50. Mr. and Mrs. Smith celebrated 46 years of marriage this past August. The image left above shows them sharing morsels of their wedding cake. The nuptials occurred inside the moated fort at Fort Monroe, in Hampton, VA, at the Chapel of the Centurion, described in Wikipedia as “the oldest  continually used wooden military structure for religious services in the United States.” The other picture shows Mr. and Mrs. Smith recently (possibly 2021) at a birthday party for a friend, perhaps hosted by them as Marie is wearing a pinafore. These pictures were posted on Facebook by Mrs. Smith
GOLDEN 50th. Lewis Phillips III (BS degree, CNC, 1972) and Linda Wilson (CNC, 1970) became Mr. and Mrs. on August of 1972. Incidentally, in the United Kingdom (and in most of Europe) the groom’s removal of the bride's garter is never done in front of their wedding guests, but in the privacy of the wedding chamber, because this tradition evolved from a medieval belief proving the bride's loss of virginity on her wedding night. Although Mrs. Phillip's Facebook page with this image is dated 12 August, 2022, her first sentence gives us indirectly the date of their nuptials: “One week ago today Lewis and I Celebrated our 50th Wedding Anniversary.” We can also deduce much from her second comment: “ We have been together since 1966. We were friends, then dated, engaged and then married.”
The couple met as teenagers in high school (perhaps the same school and grade) and grew together into adulthood, their initial childlike attraction naturally ripening to mature love in their college years, enabling them to reach that committed stage (engagement) in which they made mature decisions (e.g., putting Lewis’s college graduation ahead of their nuptials). And that process is why they have now reached their Golden Anniversary. The recent Facebook picture on the right, apparently taken in 2014 and of studio quality, captures this couple’s ongoing love for each other, which grew to include also a son and two grandsons.
ONE YEAR AWAY FROM 50. Melinda and Roman Schenkkan both have Facebook pages filled with many pictures and copious details about their lives, making my task of researching them quite time consuming but also quite interesting. The wedding image left above is paired with a picture from the couple’s honeymoon in Bermuda, which captures them so much more clearly than does the former photograph. Unlike the other CNC First Decaders in this article, neither bride nor groom is from Newport News or Hampton. Roman (BA, CNC, 1974) is from St. Louis and Melinda, who attended CNC but finished her baccalaureate degree at GWU, is from Minneapolis. Apparently they met at CNU.
Mrs. Schenkkan even posted their wedding invitation, answering all those “W” questions for us (left above). She is a retired York County Public Schools teacher; Roman is retired from the automobile business; and they both love travel, friendship, sports, motor vehicles, and especially family, being blessed with both children and grandchildren. Posted to the right is a “Now” picture from Roman’s Facebook page. Understanding that many readers of this website are in their senior years, I’ve shown ”Then” and “Now” pictures of all three couples.
All of the pictures and information in the Facebook pages of these former CNC students were fertile fields for my investigation. Having things in common (e.g., careers, schools, religions, philosophies, sports, travel and so forth) provide solid foundations for long-term marriages. I have enjoyed this sleuthing done at the request of Dr. Chambers. CHEEREO!
EDITOR'S NOTE: Having attended integrated schools on the U.S. Army bases in Europe where his father, an Army officer, was stationed, Michael Engs did not know what racially segregated schools were until age 14, when his father was sent to Fort Eustis and the Engs family moved to Newport News. After Michael's freshman year at then all-black George Washington Carver High School, his parents sent him to Walsingham Academy in Williamsburg, a private Catholic school, to better prepare him for college. His older brother was a national merit scholar attending Princeton; his mother, a teacher; and his father an Army Captain. He was expected to follow their footsteps.
(Image to the Right: Micheal Engs as a CNC freshman. 1966 Trident, p.64)
My parents had let me know that no money would be forthcoming for my college education in any substantial amount, so I needed to go somewhere close and inexpensive. Christopher Newport College was in town. So I applied. As an African American, many times I am asked why I didn't attend Hampton University or Norfolk State, traditionally black colleges that were not much further from my home. My answer is always the same. The choice was clear.
In an age of segregated schools, I would integrate every school I attended from tenth grade on. This was my means of protest. I could never let it be said that no black person had attended or would ever attend this school or that school. It was as if I had been raised for this task. Being brought up in the military by two college-educated parents, I had almost always attended integrated schools, and I had no fear of being the "only" one.
What struck me about Christopher Newport College in 1965 was the ease with which it accepted people of color. It seemed that anyone who applied was being accepted, even as late as May of his or her senior year in high school. There were no "special programs" or assumptions that deficiencies in a student's educational background might exist. No suggestion that race was the basis for your being accepted. What Christopher Newport offered was a level playing field, a place where I could succeed or fail on my own merits.
I went on to become one of the first African Americans to graduate from the College of William and Mary (Class of 1969)....Christopher Newport paved my way to a thirty-three-year career as an administrator and faculty member in the Pima County Community College District in Tucson, Arizona...the tenth largest community college system in the country with more than fifty thousand for-credit students at seven locations.
EDITOR'S NOTE: After W&M, where he was in ROTC, then three years in the Army, Michael began his career and earned further degrees: an M.A. in Counseling and Guidance at the University of Arizona and an Ed.D. in Educational Leadership at Northern Arizona University. Retired since 2007, he and his wife, Sidney, live in Tucson, where they are involved in Arizona's black history research. Their daughter, Stephanie, a University of Arizona alumna, works for National Public Radio in Tucson.
“Christopher Newport College 1965: A Sanctuary from the Draft,” in Memories of Christopher Newport College: The First Decade, 1961-1971, pp. 194-199, by A. Jane Chambers, Rita C. Hubbard, & Lawrence B. Wood, Jr. (Hallmark, 2008).
TO ORDER BOOK: Send check for $20 , made out to CNC First Decaders, to: Dr. Jane Chambers, 15267 Candy Island Lane, Carrollton, VA 23314. The money will be donated to the CNC First Decaders' Treasury.
______________________________________ We welcome your FEEDBACK. Send to firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com. Published first May 12, 2017 Published again FEBRUARY 13, 2023
(Has Spring Sprung?)
Dr. Jane Chambers, Editor and Head Writer
Chatia Chalmers, Webmaster
Donations to our Treasury are gratefully accepted. Make out checks to CNC First Decaders. Mail them to Sonny Short, FD Treasurer, 12738 Daybreak Circle, Newport News, VA 23602.
Your DECADER committee ALWAYS enjoys feedback on items that appear on this website. The feedback can be positive or negative...doesn't matter. It is just super for us to know that you are actually visiting YOUR website and have something to share.
Please don't hesitate to send us an email with a comment...we LOVE to hear from you!