Two longtime icons of WBU science added to the Hall of Honor

Release Date: February 25, 2008

PLAINVIEW – The wall of the Moody Science Building now bears more than 200 years of combined service to Wayland Baptist University, thanks to the addition of two icons from the biology department in a Friday ceremony held as part of homecoming.

Dr. J. Hoyt Bowers and Dr. Gerald Thompson, logging 45 years and 41 years respectively, were added to the Hall of Honor for the Division of Mathematics and Sciences, with bronze plaques unveiled to wrap the ceremony. The honor roll of professors includes coworkers Dr. Harold Temple, added last year on his retirement, and Dr. Harold Reese and Dr. Phil Almes, both added a few years ago. Also featured is the late Dr. Dorothy McCoy, longtime math professor.

In opening the ceremony, Dr. Vaughn Ross, currently co-chair of the division, noted the qualities of the two men being honored, celebrating their dedication to Christian education.

“The prophet Jeremiah had the right idea when he said, ‘Blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord and whose trust is the Lord,’” Ross said, also quoting the first Psalm in defining the men. “He will be like a tree planted by water, his roots won’t die and his leaves won’t fade, they will keep producing fruit even in times of drought.

“That definitely defines these men. My leaves have withered before in drought but theirs haven’t. They gave me shade and a place of shelter.”

Reese spoke about Bowers, calling him the “blueprint of biology” and noting the thousands of lives he had touched during his career. Referring to the pair, himself and Temple as the “Moody Science Rat Pack,” Reese noted that as they built the program and grew it by hitting the streets recruiting, they focused on giving students a chance.

In his response, Bowers noted the thrill of being in God’s will.

“Some people spend a lot of time in life figuring out what they’re supposed to be doing. That hasn’t been a problem for me,” he said. “I don’t think I could be put on the wall with a better group of people.”

In introducing Thompson, Temple spoke of his longtime neighbor as a good man.

“What makes a good teacher? It’s the same thing that makes a good father, grandfather and neighbor,” Temple said. “His interest in people and love for people all these years.”

Thompson thanked the room of people and credited those in the room for enriching his life, saying “they are the reasons I am here physically, educationally and emotionally.”

“I feel blessed to have done the work I’ve loved for these many years,” He added.