‘Never let anyone forget’

Memorial Ceremony honors 75 lost in 1970 (GALLERY)

A photo of the 1970 Marshall football team is displayed during the 44th annual memorial service Friday at the Memorial Student Center plaza.

Hannah Sayre, Reporter

The 75 members of the Marshall University family lost in the Nov. 14, 1970 plane crash were honored and remembered Friday as students, faculty and staff, members of the Huntington community and guests gathered around the memorial fountain.

Sponsored by the Student Government Association, the ceremony featured several speakers including Student Body President, Duncan Waugaman, Executive Director of the MU Alumni Association, Matt Hayes, Director of Athletics, Mike Hamrick, head football coach, Doc Holliday and Marshall President, Stephen J. Kopp.

Tom Shoebridge, brother of Lionel Ted Shoebridge, who was a member of the 1970 Thundering Hood football team, gave the keynote address.

“I want to thank Marshall for what you do to remember my brother and those that lost their lives that day,” Tom Shoebridge said. “Never let anyone forget.”

Waugaman commented on the large crowd despite the cold weather.

“There were a lot of first time people at this year’s ceremony,” Waugaman said. “I had so many people come up to me saying how much they enjoyed it, and that is what’s most important. It’s those who were affected that come for the first time or have come before. It is about remembering the lives lost and honoring them and their families because Marshall is one big family. I had a lady tell me that the ceremony gave her peace, and that is why we continue to have this.”

The memorial fountain is turned off at the exact same time Nov. 14 every year to honor the 75 players, coaches and fans who lost their lives in what many consider to be the worst sports disaster in university history.

Head football coach, Doc Holliday said the Thundering Herd will wear the No. 75 on their helmets Saturday as they take on Rice University.

“It is a tribute we began last season,” Holliday said. “We will make it a tradition that from now on, every season, we will wear that helmet in honor of the 75 lost this day.”

The ceremony concluded with the laying of the wreath and the silencing of the fountain, as well as the placing of the 75 white roses on the memorial fountain.

The fountain will remain still until next spring, but it is there as an endless reminder of the 75 Marshall family members lost that day.

Hannah Sayre can be contacted at [email protected].