Alumna Celebrates 104th Birthday

Update (Monday, Oct. 10): Lillie and Doris are safe at Cypress Glen. They have moved up to the third floor while the first floor is being evacuated due to anticipated flooding from Hurricane Matthew. Family members, friends, and volunteers are assisting. Doris says Lillie is adjusting to her new room pretty well.

Lillie Hammond ’36 has seen 18 U.S. presidents in her lifetime, and all 14 leaders of her alma mater, East Carolina University.

Lillie recently celebrated her 104th birthday at Cypress Glen Retirement Community, where she is now the oldest resident ever to have lived, according to staff. She is not the oldest living alumnus of East Carolina, but she is one of the top five.

She was born Lillie Dare Brown on September 13, 1912, just outside Bethel. She celebrated with friends and family on September 18 at Cypress Glen.

Lillie’s fellow resident and “care buddy” Doris Reed interviewed her for the occasion and shared her story with the East Carolina Alumni Association.

After graduating from East Carolina Teachers College in 1936, Lillie began teaching school in Bethel. She married Carey Edward Hammond in 1939. He fought in Normandy in WWII but returned home safely. He worked as a hardware store manager. She took a few years off to raise their two children, a boy and a girl. She went on to teach for a total of 31 years in Bethel and Williamston.

“I don’t know why I was singled out to be 104; I am just an ordinary person,” Lillie told Doris. “I have always believed that life is a journey, and I am content to follow this journey as long as the Lord plans.”

Lillie moved to Cypress Glen in 2006 shortly after her eyesight began to fail due to glaucoma. She lost her sight completely in 2011, but remains alert and active.

She said, “I have always tried never to complain and just deal with whatever life sends me, so I searched for retirement communities and found Cypress Glen. I wanted to enter in time to memorize my apartment and thus stay independent.”

“She just has such a positive outlook on life,” said her daughter-in-law Jana Hammond ’84. “Her new goal is to make it into the Guinness Book of World records. Even at this age, it’s like starting over new. It’s so fun to see this new spark in her.”

Lillie has fond memories of her life in Bethel. She recalls a bustling downtown, and gas being 15-25 cents a gallon. Her teaching salary was $100 a month. While she was not active in politics, she was active in her community, including Bethel Methodist Church and Bethel Book Club. As a young teacher, she was friends with a fellow teacher, Edith Warren, who went on to enter the NC Legislature. The two are friends to this day. Lillie has six grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.

“We’re an ECU family,” said Jana, who got a teaching degree from ECU like Lillie. “My husband Edward didn’t go to ECU but he is a big Pirate football fan.”

Two of Lillie’s grandchildren are current students at ECU.

“I knew ECU was a great school because not only did my grandma (I call her Memaw) go there, but so did my mom and two of my older siblings,” said Jana’s daughter Jackie Hammond, a senior communication major.

“My grandmother Lillie is a very strong, kindhearted lady, and even in her old age is not afraid to speak her mind,” says Jackie’s younger brother Jordan Hammond, who is a freshman. “Having lived so long, she has been through a lot and therefore has a lot of wisdom. It’s crazy to think how long ago 1936 was and all that has happened since then. From her stories it’s also really interesting to hear how different this university was when she was attending it.”

“It’s an incredible feeling knowing that I have someone so special in my life that has been through so much and seen so much change in her life,” said Jackie. “I love to hear stories from her life, including her time at ECTC. Just to hear about the changes that ECU has undergone from someone who was there back in the 1930s is such a special experience. I feel very blessed to still have my Memaw in my life and I never take for granted the stories she has to tell.”

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Golf Tournament Raises $26,000 for Alumni Scholarships

The ECU Alumni Scholarship Classic golf tournament was a huge success, raising a net $26,000 for the Alumni Scholarship program! This is up slightly from last year’s proceeds of $25,000.

Around 160 golfers participated in the East Carolina Alumni Association’s September 9 event, held at Ironwood Golf and Country Club and sponsored by Hilton Greenville and PotashCorp Aurora.

“It was such a great day, everyone had a wonderful time,” said Shawn Moore ’91, ’98, director of scholarships and signature programs.

The winning team with the lowest gross score was the JoCo Pirates, comprised of alumnus Jerry Shaw ’99 and his friends Whitt Young, Gill Young, and Daniel Castleberry.  The JoCo Pirates, named for Johnston County, also won the 2014 tournament.

The JoCo Pirates will go on to represent ECU at the Acura College Alumni Team Championship at Pinehurst in late October. They also went to Pinehurst in 2014, where they won first place in the net scoring division.

“Winning again felt amazing,” said Shaw. “We have been looking forward to going back to Pinehurst since 2014. That trip was the best golf trip I have ever been a part of. Hopefully we can win again! It’s always nice to know you are supporting your university and helping make college more affordable.”

The Alumni Scholarship program is funded by proceeds from two major scholarship fundraisers, the golf tournament each fall and the Pirate Alumni Road Race and Fun Run each spring, along with donations from alumni and supporters. If you’d like to contribute to the Alumni Scholarship program, you can do so anytime at PirateAlumni.com/donate.

Click here for more photos from the 2016 tournament.

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No Boundaries For Alumnus

After a week of rock climbing, rafting, fly fishing and more, George Kalinowski was most excited about being among fellow veterans who really listened.

Kalinowski, a Vietnam veteran and East Carolina alumnus, was one of ten participants on a recent trip that allowed combat wounded veterans to bond and realize new capabilities through specially adapted outdoor sports. From Aug. 9-14 at the National Sports Center for the Disabled in Winter Park, Colorado, Kalinowski and veterans of other conflicts like Iraq and Afghanistan were able to build confidence and camaraderie.

“The trip was outstanding. Everybody was opening up. I think they liked having the old guy there,” said Kalinowski, who suffered shrapnel wounds in Vietnam and received a Purple Heart. “No one takes the time to listen to veterans, at any age. With the guys, we opened up more when we realized we’d gone through similar things. They wanted to hear what I had to say. They were really supportive, and I wanted to support them too.”

Kalinowski was selected for the trip after applying through the East Carolina Alumni Association Military Alumni Chapter. This year, the chapter partnered with No Boundaries, a non-profit that offers this trip to veterans from across the country twice a year, in the summer and winter, at no cost to veterans.

“My favorite part was the fly fishing, but every activity was great,” he said. “A couple times, I doubted myself, and thought some of this stuff was beyond what I could do at my age. But everything went really well.”

Kalinowski grew up in the Washington, D.C. area. His father was an Air Force officer. He came to ECU on the recommendation of one of his high school teachers. He joined a fraternity and studied accounting, but was drafted into the Army before he could graduate. He worked in several fields throughout his career, including real estate and as the part owner of a sign company.

“Life has been good to me, I’ve been fairly well off,” he said. “But being retired, I wasn’t doing much. This trip inspired me to get in shape. My family was worried it would be too much strain. I’ve been a couch potato, but now I’ve got a whole new attitude.”

On the last night of the trip, participants were invited to be guests of honor at a local rodeo. They were brought to the center of the ring as the announcer thanked them for their service.

“The crowd stood up and clapped. I’m not an emotional person, but that got to me,” Kalinowski said. “We were so unwelcome when we came home. I’m so glad the nation is supporting veterans better.”

Kalinowski “overwhelmingly” recommends the trip to other Pirate veterans. “No doubt about it, you won’t be sorry,” he said. “It’s great what these organizations are doing for us.”

The next No Boundaries trip will be March 7-12, 2017. Applications will be due Jan. 2. ECU alumni or students who are combat wounded veterans are encouraged to apply. 

The Military Alumni Chapter hosts various programs throughout the year and is open to any East Carolina alumni with current or past military service. To find more information, get involved or support the chapter, visit PirateAlumni.com/militaryalumni.

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Alumni Board Chair and Executives Returning for Second Term

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Glenda Palmer Moultrie ’79

The chair of the East Carolina Alumni Association Board of Directors has returned for a second term. Glenda Palmer Moultrie ’79 of Derwood, Maryland began her second year as chair on July 1, along with the rest of the executive committee. Moultrie graduated from East Carolina University in 1979 with a bachelor of science in therapeutic recreation. She is the owner of L&L Travel and Tours. As chair, Moultrie will lead an organization that serves more than 165,000 East Carolina alumni worldwide.

“I am honored to serve another term as chair. Serving another term will enable our board to finalize some loose ends from the past year and continue our vision moving forward in the years ahead,” Moultrie said. “I would like to thank everyone for supporting our board of directors. Know that my commitment to our Pirate nation runs deep. I am forever a Pirate!”

Moultrie and the board plan to continue their work engaging students and young alumni, along with expanding regional chapters and affinity groups. “If we weren’t blessed to have dedicated alumni around the country engaging other alumni in their area, our association could not grow,” she said.

“I am honored to have Glenda return for a second term as chair,” Heath Bowman, associate vice chancellor for alumni relations, said. “Over the past nine months, I have been fortunate to work closely with Glenda and to observe her steady and confident leadership of our association. As we prepare to undertake new and exciting projects in the coming year, I know that the entire Pirate alumni family will benefit from Glenda’s veteran leadership at the helm.”

The rest of the executive committee also will remain for another year. John Israel ’82 of Norfolk, Virginia will serve as vice chair. Oliver “Tim” Willis ’12 of Durham will serve as treasurer. Mark Garner ’77 of Greenville will serve as secretary.

Joining the board as new members are Crystal Dailey ’97, ’03 of Frederick, Maryland, Ron Hinton III ’14 of Raleigh and Sarah Proctor ’04 of Wilmington.

The East Carolina Alumni Association Board of Directors is comprised on 28 members who serve three-year terms. Members serve on a volunteer basis. Meetings are held four times a year. The mission of the East Carolina Alumni Association is to inform, involve and serve members of the East Carolina family throughout their lifelong relationship with the university.

Meet Us in Charlotte, Wake County, and DC!

Ahoy there, Pirates! Do you want to meet fellow East Carolina University alumni in your area this summer? The East Carolina Alumni Association has several events this month around the Pirate Nation!

The Charlotte Chapter is holding an interest meeting this Thursday, July 14 at 6:30 p.m. at Old Mecklenburg Brewery located at 4150 Yancey Road. No registration is required. If you’ve been looking for ways to get more involved and stay connected to ECU, this is a great way to start! If you can’t make it and still want to be involved, e-mail charlotte.nc@alumni.ecu.edu or follow the Charlotte Chapter on Facebook.

The Wake County Chapter is holding a casual meetup next Thursday, July 21 from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at Blackfinn Ameripub in Morrisville, NC. These meetups are held twice a month alternating between Morrisville and Raleigh. There’s no need to sign up ahead of time but e-mail raleigh.nc@alumni.ecu.edu  or follow the Wake County Chapter on Facebook for more information.

Finally, join us for a professional happy hour in Washington, D.C. on Thursday, July 28 from 6:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. at Flight Wine Bar located at 777 6th Street NW. Be sure to follow the DC Metro Chapter on Facebook!

All of the alumni association’s upcoming events can be found here.

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Members, Buccaneer Buffet Registration Open Now!

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Registration for Buccaneer Buffet 2016, served up by Dowdy Student Stores, is now open to current members of the East Carolina Alumni Association!

Join fellow alumni and fans at the alumni association’s official tailgate for each home football game at ECU. Enjoy catered food from local restaurants, included beverages, live entertainment, door prizes and more!

New this year, we’re offering members a VIP (Very Important Pirate) experience! Members will be allowed to enter a half-hour early. This means members will be the first to try our featured craft beer at each tailgate, another new offering this year, among our many other amenities. Buccaneer Buffet always begins three hours before kick-off (so members can enter three-and-a-half hours before kick-off). Members will also receive member appreciation gifts at certain events.

For members of the alumni association, tickets are $15 for ages 11 and up and $5 for ages 10-3. For non-members, tickets are $25 for ages 11 and up and $10 for ages 10-3. All children 2 and under are free. Prices include NC sales tax. Member pricing is good for alumni association members and their dependents 22 years of age and younger.

Not a member? Click here to join and get immediate access to Buccaneer Buffet and our many other member benefits. Non-members can register starting August 1. As always, Buccaneer Buffet is open to all friends and fans of East Carolina.

Buccaneer Buffet is held at Johnson Soccer Stadium, which is located behind Clark-LeClair Baseball Stadium, off of Charles Boulevard. This site is fully accessible, paved, tented, and has indoor restrooms. This site is served by the university’s ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) shuttles.

Tickets purchased prior to August 18 will be mailed to your address. Tickets purchased after this date will not be mailed and can be picked up at the door.

PLEASE NOTE: All attendees MUST bring photo ID with birth date! Members should bring their membership card to take advantage of member benefits. 

Tickets are sold on a first-come, first-served basis. Some tailgates may sell out quickly, so make plans to purchase your tickets in advance. Tickets may be sold at the door if space is available.

If you have any questions, contact Assistant Director of Alumni Programs Megan Howard ’07 at howardme14@ecu.edu or 252-328-5557.

Buccaneer Buffet 2016

Sept. 3 vs. Western Carolina
Crave, Aramark, Sweet Couple
Abita Purple Haze

Sept. 10 vs. NC State
GK Café, Aramark, Sandi’s Creative Cakes, Campus Cookies
Sweetwater 420

Oct. 1 vs. UCF
Moore’s Old Tyme Barbeque, Aramark, Campus Cookies
Carolina Brewery Sky Blue

Oct. 13 vs. Navy
Zoe’s Kitchen, Aramark, Sweet Traditions
Catawba Brewing White Zombie

Oct. 29 vs. UConn
Abrams, Aramark, GK Café
Troegs Perpetual IPA

New Heights: ECU Student, Alumnus Volunteer at Air Force Encampment

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Maj. Bailey (left) and Cadet Nance (right) throw Pirate hooks at the 2016 Encampment.

A student and an alumnus of East Carolina University worked together at a recent Air Force event to help local youth reach new heights in confidence and leadership.

Rising senior Jacquelyn Nance and Chris Bailey ’08 volunteered at the 2016 Summer Encampment put on by the NC Wing of the Civil Air Patrol from June 18-25 near Charlotte.

The Civil Air Patrol, an official auxiliary of the Air Force run by civilian volunteers, hosts encampments for youth ages 12-18 as part of its mission to create good citizens who understand the importance of flight. Young cadets got to ride in airplanes and launch model rockets as they learned about aerospace. They also experienced some basic military training on the ground, like survival skills and first aid. Nance helped Bailey organize the flights and other activities, and even got to take a ride in a plane herself.

“The encampment was an amazing experience,” said Bailey, a major who serves as director of operations for the NC Wing. “Helping to mentor young cadets and in a weeks’ time see them develop is the most rewarding experience for me.”

“I like how the CAP develops leadership in students,” said Nance, who is a cadet in ECU’s Air Force ROTC program. “I enjoyed seeing their confidence and self-esteem growing.

While ECU alumni have participated in encampments before, this is the first time a student was asked to volunteer. Nance said she was happy to be a “guinea pig” and hopes other ECU cadets will volunteer in the future.

“It was great,” she said. “It was definitely a different experience. I didn’t know much about the Civil Air Patrol. This gave me an opportunity to learn more. It was really cool to experience another aspect of the Air Force. I also got the opportunity to build leadership skills of my own.”

“I’ve always wanted to be in the military,” continued Nance, who is from the Fayetteville area. “But my mom wanted me to get a college degree first. I came across the Air Force ROTC program at ECU. My mom went to ECU for nursing so she was excited.”

Nance is majoring in recreation therapy and plans to graduate in December 2017. After that, she’ll serve her required four years, and hopes to go into aircraft maintenance or airfield operations. “I like working with planes and people,” she said. “I’m not sure if I’ll do a full 20 years [in the Air Force]. I definitely want to use my major, so maybe I’ll get my masters.”

Wherever Nance’s career takes her, Bailey knows she’s off to a good start at ECU.

“ECU helped to make me a better leader and to put others first,” Bailey said. “ECU allowed me to go after my goals and to help mentor others to achieve theirs.”

By Jackie Drake