THE KEENE STATE COLLEGE MAGAZINE FOR ALUMNI AND FRIENDS VOLUME XIX NUMBER 1 Fall 2003
  
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Third in Line

Third in Line
Katie Parkinson takes the field for her KSC family

Katie Parkinson photo by Bill GnadeIf you attended any Keene State College women's soccer games this fall, you may have heard a louder than usual ovation when Katie Parkinson '04 ran onto the field. Katie, like many members of KSC athletic teams, has always been well supported by a large contingent of family members and friends. But there is something special about Parkinson's cheering section: a three-generation KSC family that includes her father, Dave Parkinson '67, and grandmother, Virginia Bodwell Parkinson, a 1939 grad of Keene Normal School.

"It's nice to have family in the stands," said Katie, whose dad, mother Sue, and brother Andrew on occasion made a six-hour round trip from their home in Wakefield, R.I., to attend games. Although she doesn't get over to Keene as frequently from her home in Goffstown, Virginia is also a big supporter of the team.

A member of the Owl men's soccer team in the mid-sixties, Dave Parkinson had the opportunity to play for KSC coaching legend Sumner Joyce.

"He was low-key and laid-back," said Dave about Joyce. "He made comments like, 'If you want to win the game, you have to put the ball in the net.'"

Dave, a long-time teacher who went on to referee soccer for 25 years, offers his own advice to his daughter. "He draws diagrams," Katie said. "After the game when we go out to eat, he has everything set up on the table."

'I absolutely love it here. I love my friends, teammates, and classes.'- Katie ParkinsonA backfield player for the Owls when they competed in the teachers' league with teams that included Johnson State, Castleton State, and Plymouth State, Dave played on a soccer field where the current dining commons now stands. "You couldn't miss seeing us play when we were right on campus," he said.

Parkinson family photo by  Mark Corliss"The College was much smaller, and everyone knew everybody else," added Dave, who served as a student manager of the Student Union at the time. Even the dining experience was different. "When I came to Keene State, the dining facilities were on the bottom level of Fiske Hall," he explained. "Every week we had to sit at the same table, and one of the students served as waiter."

Katie said her grandmother, an avid walker, strolls around the campus when she visits Keene, pointing out the buildings that were there when she attended school.

'He draws diagrams. After the game when we go out to eat, he has everything set up on the table.' - Katie ParkinsonIn contrast to today's sprawling campus, Virginia remembers a smaller and quainter Keene Normal School. "There was even a special day when you could bring your dirty laundry down and they would wash and fold it for you," she said.

Virginia said that her fondest memory from Keene Normal School was meeting her future husband, the late William Parkinson '40.

Returning to Goffstown to teach, Virginia and her close friend from KNS, Carlene Watson '42, decided to build homes side by side. "Our husbands cut down the trees for the houses up in Maine and brought the lumber back down," she said. "We're small-town people and still neighbors."

"They're like the 'Golden Girls,'" Katie added.

Following in the footsteps of her father and grandmother, Katie, a senior elementary special education major, is very pleased with her decision to attend KSC. "I absolutely love it here," she said. "I love my friends, teammates, and classes."

A starting midfielder on the Owl women's soccer team the past two years, Katie has played a major role, helping KSC reach the finals of the New England Regional Tournament last fall.

Like her sister Shelly, a former soccer player at Northeastern University, Katie hopes to eventually get involved in coaching. In the meantime, she is looking forward to a successful season and giving her family plenty to cheer about.

Stuart Kaufman is KSC's sports information coordinator.