Your Auburn Dads (2013 Edition) – Part 1
What has now become a Father’s Day at WarBlogle.com tradition, “Your Auburn Dads” returns for the third straight year. This year’s submissions are some of the best ever. You’ll laugh, you’ll cry… No seriously, you will laugh and you will cry.
There are some great Auburn dads out there, and these stories confirm it. I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: the Auburn Family is a family and it all starts with Auburn in your family. These dads put Auburn in their family.
“My dad died in a car wreck when I was 3. He graduated from Auburn in ’59. Everything of his that I had growing up was Auburn related. His class ring. His fraternity pin. Artwork that he did in school. His Glomeratas. All Auburn. Because of that, Auburn was the only school I wanted to attend.
Once out of the Navy, I made a bee-line and haven’t left. Auburn was my own personal Mecca. And it is one of the few things in my life that has exceeded my hopes and dreams. When I drive around campus, around town, I see places he lived and worked. When the trees died it bothered me not because we had been there together, but that in those trees there was a spot on this planet that I knew without question my father had been, and I could go there and share that.
I never really knew him, but because of Auburn, I do, and on a level that many men may never experience with their fathers. My father gave me the gift of Auburn, and he never lived to see it. I just hope I can give that to my son…” –Rich Perkins
“In 1974, when my father was in college, he was desperate for cash. So desperate, in fact, that if his friends were to pay him to do something outrageous, he might just do it. On February 15th, 1974, this is exactly what happened – several of his friends each bet him $50 (combined, a large sum for its day) to do something quite outrageous, something quite daring – and something that would eventually turn into a massive fad around campus.
My father, with the help of various fraternity brothers, planned his moves. He placed clothes in the basement of Haley and Parker, and had various getaway cars. At the 9:50 break between classes (which, as every Auburn student and alumnus knows, is the time when the vast majority of students are on the concourse), he donned his now famous ski mask and cleats.
He was wearing nothing else.
He streaked down the main concourse to his getaway car on Thach, and escaped safely. Within days there were people streaking all over campus (for free), all to live up to the legend of the infamous man known only as “The Streak.”
To this day he will still deny it when we ask, with a smirk on his face and a drawn out “nooo,” but our family knows the truth ever since our mother let it slip – almost 40 years ago my father became infamous at Auburn for streaking down the concourse.
Happy Fathers Day Dad – or should I call you The Streak?
Please don’t ever do it again.” –Anonymous
“In the Fall of 1992 I had gotten myself into quite the pickle. I was in the 9th grade and for some reason I felt it absolutely necessary to debate football with every Bammer in my class. And I don’t just mean ‘show up to class wearing an Auburn shirt.’ Oh no, I was talking trash like only a just out of junior high girl could. I just couldn’t stop myself. I loved Auburn, and dang it, you were going to know it.
If you’ll recall 1992 wasn’t a particularly good year to debate with Bammers. For some reason I had really been mouthing off that season. I don’t know why. Immaturity? Awkward attempts at flirting? Who knows? The Auburn versus Georgia game was a particularly hard pill to swallow.
Flipping football. As you all know, the Georgia game that year ended with a bitter loss. So bitter that when I texted my brother this afternoon to get a reminder of the details of the game he texted back ‘I have wiped the memory of that game from my mind.’
Here is the bottom line: We had 14 seconds left on the clock and were about to score when…well, when it basically all went to hell. The seconds ticked off with no score and no win and I burst into tears at the injustice of it all.
Now my father has never been the kind of Dad that yelled. Actually he has only yelled at me three times in my entire life. This was the third time. He started with the ‘it’s just a game’ speech and worked himself into ‘I’ll never take you to another game if you keep this up.” That shut my tears down quick.
Sunday morning as were driving back my stomach was just churning thinking about what I was going to say at school the next day to all the haters. If you’ve never had this feeling you’ve led a charmed life. My suspicions are though that if you’re hanging out on WarBlogle’s site you’ve felt it – that burning feeling.
Finally I confessed to my Dad that I was worried about what the Alabama fans were going to say to me in the morning. He said these simple but profound statements: ‘Don’t debate it with them. When they say something just respond with ‘yeah, that was a tough loss’ and then move on. You can even be nice to them about their game.’ Move on? Just say it was a tough loss? Be nice? What crazy world was he living in? He continued ‘if you let them know it gets to you they’ll just keep it up. Quit talking to them about their games and just talk about football with Auburn people.’
I walked into school and was immediately greeted by the biggest Bama fan in school. He began to rag me about the loss and I opened my mouth and said ‘yep, it was a tough one. Y’all did well, though. ‘ and then walked away. I turned back to look at him and his mouth was literally hanging open in shock. From then on my dealings with Bammers was completely different. When I didn’t react like a crazy person I wasn’t that much fun to make fun of.
So, thanks Dad and War Eagle!” –Paula Claunch
“My daddy is a ’78 alum and I am a 2012 alum. My parents from the beginning raised my twin brother and I to be Auburn fans. We had quite a few matching Auburn outfits and attended many games growing up.
During my four years at Auburn, I was blessed to be a majorette in the Auburn University Marching Band. My freshman to senior year, my parents bought season tickets for the home games and also got tickets to as many away games as possible. My daddy was (and still is) my biggest supporter. He came to early Saturday morning practices, drove me wherever I was supposed to be, and carried all my majorette paraphernalia . No matter the outcome of the game or how well I performed he always met me at our designated tree after the game with a smile and “War Eagle!”
The 2010 football season was for everyone a dream come true. However, the best part was that not only was the whole band going to Arizona for the National Championship; but my parents were too. They were there for the pep rallies, the game, and the crazy celebration afterward. Much of that trip is still a blur, but I will never forget those memories shared with my Daddy.
This year on April 20, we shared another special Auburn memory that will never be forgotten. We along with thousands of others stood at Toomers’ Corner while David Housel and many others proclaimed their allegiance to not just trees but the spirit of the Auburn Family. I definitely shed a few tears as we continuously threw our toilet paper as hard as we could and then continued to play in it just like the young children beside me.
I did not want to leave that spot because I knew it would be over, but I realized that so many other memories will be made in that spot in the future with my Daddy.
My four years at Auburn were the best years of my life and my Daddy had a huge part in that. He exemplifies the words of the creed with everything he does. He raised my brother and I in those same principles. He sacrificed greatly to pay for my education and help me fulfill my dream of becoming a college majorette, but most importantly, he allowed me to graduate from the greatest university in the world.
Thank you Daddy! You are my hero and you have my heart! WAR EAGLE!!”
“Unlike most people you probably get this from, I did not grow up an Auburn fan. In fact, I didn’t know much about Auburn until my senior year of high school (I’m from the Washington DC area). I’ve always had a pretty good relationship with my dad especially when it comes to sports, but it was a huge step for me to attend a major university like Auburn because it was a new experience for both of us. He grew up in Buffalo, NY and went to a pretty small college in the same area. We’re big Buffalo Bills fans but have never really had a college team to root for. After I decided to attend Auburn, my dad took it upon himself to get to know everything about Auburn that he could so we could talk about it from over 750 miles away.
My favorite moment is what happened just after the Clemson game during the National Championship season. Personally, I jumped about 10 feet into the air after the win and I was very lucky to talk with my dad over the phone, seeing as how the cell reception was awful. He and the rest of my family were in Colorado for a wedding so I wasn’t expecting them to watch much of the game. I was in complete amazement to find out that they had been going back and forth from the wedding reception and the hotel room to watch the game. It meant so much to me that my dad had become so involved with Auburn only 3 games into the season. It made it seem to me, and to anyone I told this story to, that he had been an Auburn fan his entire life. You can’t imagine just how happy that seemingly small gesture made me. Since then we’ve had some really great conversations over the past 3 years and I love talking Auburn football with him, but nothing will ever beat that Clemson game.” –Chris Chmura
“My dad is a very special Auburn man. He played football for Pat Dye on the team with Bo Jackson so he tells me stories about what it was like to play for the Tigers then. We go to almost every Auburn home game and some of the bowl games! After every game he takes me down to see all the players come out of the gates and then we go to Toomer’s corner if it was a win. After seeing the players and going to Toomer’s corner, he always takes me to Momma Goldberg’s! I like to make cards and signs for the players during the season so I usually make about 10 cards a week. My dad is always helping me with the cards and signs and getting them mailed to the players. My dad is a great Auburn man and a great dad! War Eagle and Happy Father’s Day!”
“When I was younger my dad would record the Iron Bowl and watch it after he heard the final score. He claims his heart couldn’t take it. Win or lose he would always watch it but knowing the result made it easier. One year in particular he was really nervous about the game. He declared a media blackout in our house. No TV or radio or anything until he gave the all clear. He made us all go to the mall figuring no one who cared would be there.
As we were heading home we exited thru Sears where every TV was tuned in to the Iron Bowl. He caught a glimpse of Auburn passing. He quickly calculated the time left and said we would only be passing if we were behind. He looked at the floor, put his fingers in his ears, and ran to the car. When we got home the blackout continued so I took a nap. I was woken up to the sight of my dad doing a herkie jump screaming, “We won!! We won!! War Eagle, baby!!!” I immediately jumped up and started dancing around with him. Just a typical football Saturday when I was growing up!” –Keri Jones
“My dad grew up the son of an API graduate. He knew what it was like before color TV littered every room of the house.
My dad never attended Auburn University but he sure supported me during my years here. My dad always believed in the Auburn Creed and referred to it more than once when giving me those life lessons we didn’t always want to hear.
My dad had a heart for Auburn because it meant so much to his father as well as his son. His son will be a two time graduate from Auburn in 2014. My dad cried at the football games, sometimes during the national anthem but always after touchdowns and wins because he could only imagine the joy in the football player’s hearts.
The 2012 season would be my father’s final year with his beloved Tigers. Through all the turmoil and coach hot seat talk, all my dad could say was “what about the players” or “imagine how bad those players feel”. My final Auburn game with my dad was against Georgia. While a blow out loss in the first half, we couldn’t budge dad from those upper deck high wind seats. He wanted to see what the boys would do after the second half. We later talked him into leaving after the 3rd quarter.
Dad lost a long battle with leukemia and the complications of its treatment in April of this year. Like I said before dad never set foot on Auburn University’s campus as an enrolled student, but he was certainly as much of an Auburn man as they come. He will be missed but every football game I attend through my years of life, I’ll always remember how much he loved Auburn.” –Joshua Oliver
“When my Auburn dad passed away in 2004, he had one wish. His wish was his ashes be placed on the fifty yard line of Jordan-Hare stadium. I had the opportunity to do this at the Arkansas game. Little did I realize that Auburn would go undefeated that year!
In honor of William M Schultz Jr, 1959″ –Bill Schultz
I bet you never thought you’d laugh at a picture of a guy’s butt and cry at the thought of losing your dad in the same blogle. These are some great stories, and there will be more tomorrow. If you sent something in, and don’t see yours today, I promise it will be in part two.