Your article on A.G. Arvold in the NDSU magazine brought back many memories. I graduated in 1941 and had spent my last two years as a student assistant at the Little Country Theatre. I have always felt that A.G. selected me after seeing how I cleaned up the Log Cabin after one of our productions. I very, very neatly lined up all of the coffee cups in the kitchen with all handles pointing in the same direction.
So much for that. I had a role in most plays produced in my junior and senior years. Never a lead role, not my thing, but some minor role since I was to remain at the theater until the last soul left every night. My various duties included playing a recording over the tower speakers every noon during Lilac Days. The recording was the voice of Ruth Piper singing the song "Lilac Days" -- if you have ever heard the song you know I must have suffered through it. To compensate, once in a while I would sneak in some "hot number" when I knew A.G. was off campus. I might add that with the cooperation of Lloyd Collins who played the organ at the Powers Coffee Shop, I also arranged that Peggy Lee sang "Lilac Days" frequently.
My duties included anything that A.G. wished. I reviewed requests for plays from communities and selected what I thought appropriate. (We live in a retirement home now and I carry on by producing a monthly Play Readers play.) I was also the student manager for the Lyceum series and besides managing the ticket office also paid off the performers. Never will forget when Grace Moore tore up her $300 check -- a big check in my eyes. In my senior year I taught a class on Robert's Rules of Order.
A.G. offered me the post of graduate student assistant if I would go to the University of Wisconsin for the summer following my graduation. He also said that as soon as I had my master's he would put me on the faculty. A very exciting offer and off I went in the summer of 1941. During that summer, as an ROTC graduate, I received orders to report for active duty in October for one year. WWII changed the plans for my future and after the war I accepted a regular army commission.
I saw A.G. a last time when I returned from overseas and he could not believe that I would not be coming back to HIS department. He truly was a memorable figure. An inspiration to a boy from Hazen, North Dakota.
Mike Olsen and Carol Renner, both of whom I know very well, are excellent story tellers and writers. I really enjoyed their works in this issue. I was also amazed to see the quality of the Best of Show pieces featured in the magazine. Where were those talented young artists when I was at NDSU? Kudos to you and to your team of eloquent writers, designers and photographer.
I started at NDSU in the fall of 1940 and enlisted in the U.S. Army Air Corps in February 1942, shortly after Pearl Harbor. I returned in January 1946 and got my degree in '47. I then went to the U. of Illinois Medical School in Chicago and was graduated in 1951. I retired from practice in Anesthesiology in 1989 and have lived in Florida since. That's all by way of introduction.
I only took one course from A.G. Arvold and have vivid memories of him. I worked as an usher for Arvold, along with Howard Leikvold and Gwen Stenjhem. We had a lot of laughs.
I did meet Fred Walsh several times and thought very highly of him.
I do not know who put me on your mailing list, but I certainly do appreciate it. I spent four of the best years of my life in North Dakota, one in Hillsboro and three at NDSU. I was a police officer during this time. Hindsight is definitely 20-20. I should have never left either one of these places.