From the Mailbag


From the Mailbag


Update on the touch of success
I have been in coaching on and off for about 30 years but last year I was hired by the Lakers to work with the superstar with no touch from the free throw line. The whole world laughed at Shaq [O’Neal] and his inability to make a simple free throw. Well after 12 months of correspondence with Shaq’s agent, they agreed to bring me on as a personal shooting surgeon, consultant, mechanic, repairman, etc.
     To make a long story short Shaq made the biggest improvement in nba history improving from 39.3 percent to 67.4 percent and an nba championship. I now have an nba championship ring for my contribution to the cause.
     As of today (May 2002) his percentage has steadily improved and is now above 55 percent for the year and is above 70 percent for the playoffs just as he was last year.
     There also happens to be another member of the Church on the Laker squad and that is Mark "Maddog" Madsen. A graduate from University of Stanford—a great guy and a great example for the Church.
     Best swishes,
     Ed Palubinskas ’72
     Baton Rouge, La.

A bit of additional information
I have appreciated the alumni magazines for a number of years, thanks to my taking an off-campus course some forty years ago! My association with Ricks actually began when both my parents were teachers there, before I was born, and has continued lately with the attendance of a number of my grandchildren.
     I would like to add a bit of information to supplement your coverage in the recent issue on Ricks College athletics. The small picture of the basketball team of 1916-17 in the lower left-hand picture shows my father, R. Burns Crookston, with his entire squad of players that year. In the fall of 1915, he was hired as a manual arts teacher at Ricks, and my mother was also hired to teach English and debating on a part-time basis. During the winter, Dad organized the Rexburg Athletic Club and played with them all winter. That led to his being asked to coach the college team in 1916. Ricks played the high school teams from surrounding communities and won every game, as had the Athletic Club while he played with them for several years. His farming occupation caused him to leave Ricks; and after the war, he became the coach for all sports at byc in Logan until it closed.
     Marjorie C. Christensen ’69
     Boise, Idaho

Remembering Ricks
I started at Ricks in 1970 and had to drop out halfway through my sophomore year due to injuries sustained in a car crash. I got married before I could come back. I loved Ricks, even if Rexburg was windy, cold, and uphill in every direction.
     Sandra Vivian Anderson Webster ’71
     Washington, D.C.

Response to Performance Tour
All I have to say is "WOW," what an evening! Our Sanctuary was so filled with heaven last night. The children in our choir and their parents witnessed something that will be very rare to recreate or participate in again in a lifetime. I have had phone call after phone call today with people so thankful and so humbled by what they experienced with your [Vocal Union and Collegiate Choir].
     Your choir members should be commended for their manners, their ability to walk up to strangers and carry on conversations and make people feel they had known them forever! My whole ambition in our providential meeting was to love your choir and make them feel welcomed as well as appreciated. We got that in reverse with all the grace shown by everyone associated with the BYU–Idaho group. I want you to know, that anytime you need a place to perform, rest, eat, play, whatever, we want to be the ones to do it.
     I hope this will not be the last time you ever come to San Angelo or to Texas for that matter; I hope we will be on your permanent lists of places to perform and be loved.
Thank you,
     Pat Bodenhamer, Administrator
     First Presbyterian Fine Arts School
     San Angelo, Texas

Newest alumni reflection
Like pioneers, it is our duty as some of the first graduates from BYU–Idaho to prepare the trail for the coming migration of students. We must build the bridges and plant the crops that will allow future graduates to succeed as they pursue their desired course. As we continue in the school, enter the work force, or start our families, it is important to realize that we are establishing a reputation that will introduce the world to BYU–Idaho.
     The example we set among our employers, neighbors, family, and friends will communicate to them the quality of people that come from here. If they find that we are honest, dependable, compassionate, intelligent, and serviceable, they will be more likely to embrace and provide opportunities for students who come in future years. We are the beginning of a legacy, and it is our privilege and responsibility to help our fellowmen succeed by establishing strong bridges on which they may eventually cross.…
     As we step forward into the unknown, we must remember to walk with faith in every footstep as did the pioneers. If we do, the Lord will have access to work through us in preparing the way for others. . . . Arthur King Peters said, "The true Mormon Trail was not on the prairie, but in the spirit." May we continue on that trail as we spread the "Spirit of Ricks" throughout the world.
     Tara Fitzgerald ’02
     Highest honor graduate
     Remarks at graduation August ’02

Keep in touch:
Submit reflections of college life or response to articles by writing to or Summit Editor, Kimball 226, Rexburg, ID 83460-1660.