An array of five Colorado Spruce lines the pinnacle of Oya Hill at the south end of Appian Way. Better known as "blue spruce" because of the dominant color of its needles, the Picea pungens is a valued and widely used ornamental tree. This evergreen standout under normal conditions reaches a height of 60 feet with an accompanying spread of 20 feet. It has an upright, pyramid shape, with limbs spreading wider from top to bottom. Of course this characteristic lends itself to dramatic holiday lighting displays.
The hill and its trees have tremendous historic and sentimental value to the College community. A plaque, set in a large boulder, tells the story of a man who dedicated his life's work to Keene State College. Henry Oya, the gardener at the College for many years, is commemorated on this ground. Chris Feiker, the current Keene State gardener and a protégé of Henry Oya, planted the trees to honor his old mentor.
- Jeff Garland, KSC Arborist
Gladys Shover retired from Keene State in 1979, after 32 years of service in a number of administrative offices. Five years later, she came back, returning to the Alumni Office as a volunteer, logging about 1,000 hours each year for almost 20 years. This past fall, Dr. Yarosewick presented Gladys with the President's Award for Excellence, with which he honors exceptional service to the College.
The award was not the first official recognition of Gladys's contributions. In 1980 she was named an honorary alumna by the Alumni Association, and in 1990 she received the Association's prestigious Sprague Drenan Award. In 1998 the KSC Alumni Association donated $1,000 in her name to the Appian Gateway fund, and in 1991 she received a Governor's Volunteer Recognition Award from Gov. Judd Gregg.
Out of the Drink
William von Rosenvinge was steering his boat along the shore at Plum Island, Mass., after a fishing trip, when everything suddenly went wrong. A large wave crested and caught his boat broadside, dumping him and all his gear into chest-deep surf. Just as he thought his luck was running out, a group of Keene State students came to his rescue.
Members of the KSC Campus Ecology Club had spent September 14, the first outing of the semester, exploring the island's shoreline and discussing their goals for the year ahead. Now, late in the afternoon, they had wandered down to the beach, a popular fishing spot, just in time to see von Rosenvinge's boat capsize.
Seth Mellen and Dave Phillips waded out to von Rosenvinge, who was struggling to right his boat. They helped him to the beach while other club members recovered his gear and dragged the boat ashore. The students alerted park authorities and stayed with von Rosenvinge, keeping him warm and bailing out his boat, until they were sure that help was on the way.
In a letter to the College, with which he also made a contribution to a scholarship fund, von Rosenvinge wrote that he was "most impressed and appreciative of the way in which the students pitched in to help and the concern they showed me."
"They did most of the work getting things back in the boat and providing a cell phone so I could contact home and arrange for a tow," he wrote. "Certainly their actions speak very positively for the College as well as for themselves."
Ecology Club students involved in the rescue were Jamie deChamplain, Kristen Lachance, Steve LoVerme, Seth Mellen, Laura Moodie, Chris Perkins, Dave Phillips '02, and Maggie Spicer.
- Stephanie McCormack Nicholson '71
In Memoriam -
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