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Friday, September 13, 2013
It was final examination week at Roanoke College, and the custom of the wives of the faculty (collectively known as the Fortnightly Club) during this period was to host a break of light refreshments of coffee, tea, and pastries for the students.
I thought this was a gracious, thoughtful and generous act. With these thoughts in mind, I made it a point to say thank you to those who hosted this event before leaving the lounge to resume studying.
I had not thought any more about it until the next day, during lunch in the campus dining room, when Dr. Sherman Oberly, the president of the college, entered to make an announcement. It was obvious by his demeanor that he was upset.
He spoke of the social break time provided by the faculty wives and the extent and effort they went to to make it a pleasant and relaxing for the students. He further exclaimed that only one student was thoughtful and courteous enough to thank the ladies. He was quick to reprimand those other students for their lack of manners.
I said not a word.
When someone does a service, no matter how small or large, they deserve to be thanked and to know their acts are appreciated. It is the right thing to do, and I have been ever mindful of this from that college experience.
I am sure that my parents, had they known, would have been pleased to know that their efforts in teaching their son to do the right thing did pay off.
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