Tuesday, July 15, 2014

60 Years Later, A Heart For LETU

LETU Alum Harold Crossman on his
visit to campus this past week.
Summers can be very quiet on campus. The university marketing communications team has been officing in the Memorial Student Center this summer, a floor below the R.G. LeTourneau museum. Visitors to the museum are frequent, but few quite as special as Harold Crossman. This past Friday, Mr. Crossman walked through our front door with his daughter and brother-in-law. A LeTourneau Technical Institute graduate of 1954, Mr. Crossman graduated with a degree in Mechanical Science.

The last time Mr. Crossman was on campus, LeTourneau University was still more than 30 years from becoming a full-fledged 'university.' But through his visit, we were reminded of the real heart of LeTourneau University. Prestige means nothing without impacting people. Titles are worthless if we don’t touch hearts.

Harold Crossman, 1954
During the past 60 years, Mr. Crossman has made an entire life for himself in Oregon. But that's not what he wanted to talk about on Friday. He wanted to talk about R.G. LeTourneau, about his time with Mom and Pop. He spoke with soft appreciation and the utmost love for what was obviously a very important chapter in his life. He talked about the alter day program and having the opportunity to get an education thanks to the LeTourneaus. His eyes shined as he told the story of the thirty minutes a day that R.G. stopped production in order that the entire factory could pray together and hear the Good News of Jesus Christ.

During 1952, Mr. Crossman traveled to Liberia with R.G. where he worked for almost a year before returning to Longview to finish his degree. After graduating, he voluntarily went back to Liberia. It was during his time in Liberia that he met his wife. After becoming ill, he spent some time in the hospital there. His future wife was his nurse.

The pilgrimage to Longview this weekend was just a stop on the way to Mississippi where he was spending the weekend reuniting with others who had spent time in Liberia. While his visit was brief, it reminded us of the lasting impact RG LeTourneau has had on so many lives. Even today, his legacy lives on in the spirit of students, the work of faculty and the hearts of alumni. As the university continues to grow and change, our roots remain the same.

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