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Blueandgold.com salutes Notre Dame’s Rev. Theodore Hesburgh C.S.C. on his birthday.
This post has been edited 2 times, most recently by Jason Sapp on 5/25/2012 at 8:24 AM
had the honor of serving Fr. Ted working in Corby Hall during high school....Just a remarkable man and very intelligent. Happy Birthday Father Ted!
5-Time POTW Winner, 4 time at BGI and 1 at 24/7
No surprise...outstanding article Lou, I had the pleasure of reading "God, Country, Notre Dame" (recommendation by Lou...thank you) and it was fascinating how impressive of a man Father Hesburgh was. By far the most impressive man I have read/heard about. Lou touched on several points about him, serving on numerous Presidential Appointments, Atomic Energy Councels he was on for decades, as well as the Student issues over Vietnam and his involvement in the Civil Rights movement. But there is so much more its incredible, he served/worked for every Pope from 1950 to the late 80's. President Nixon asked him "what would it take for me to get you to come work for the US government, do I need to talk to the Pope" One of the most connected men I can think of, he knew everyone or was one phone call away from being introduced. Reading about him studing at the Gregorian in Rome for a few years during WWII and learning 5-6 different languages, the man was so smart and I found his sense of humor to be just as sharp. I would highly recommend "God, Country, Notre Dame" if you want to read about a truely impressive human being.
Happy birthday to a great man!
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Father Ted Happy Birthday! You are truly a loyal son and the Father to many sons and daughters of Our Lady’s University – Notre Dame Our Mother. God Bless You.
One word - Legend
Happy Birthday Fr. Ted!
Thanks for posting this Lou!
May your neighbors respect you, Trouble neglect you, The angels protect you, And heaven accept you.
Happy Birthday to one awesome man!
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Great article Lou.
I think Fr. Ted is one of the greatest minds and theologians of our times.
He is a giant among us.
Happy Birthday Fr. Ted
Great article Lou as always. But I am curious, and not to slander him, but do you really believe Leahy resigned and was not fired by Hesburgh?
One of the more terrifying moments of my life was when I was a second year MBA student and had dozed off during one of Fr. Ted's speeches. I was in the aisle seat of the second row and pretty much under this nose. When I awoke, I was looking right into his steely eyes, glaring at me like a lion that's about to make a meal of you! I almost died of shock, embarrassment, and a paralytic stroke!
Years later, I was on a flight from Chicago to DC and I saw Father Ted entering the plane. I recall feeling a sense of Catholic guilt and praying that he wouldn't sit next to me. Even though he would never remember an insignificant member of the thousands of audiences he has addressed, I wanted to dive under the seat in front of me, escape from the plane, and take the next flight.
As luck would have it, he sat right next to me. He greeted me with a big old smile and a "Hello!" and could not have been more gracious and humble throughout the journey. Of course, I didn't have the nerve to remind him about that little incident in the Business School auditorium.
Great man! Long may he live...and Happy Birthday!
This post was edited by joethoma on 5/26/2012 at 6:51 AM
I never said anything about whether he was fired or pushed out. The popular consensus was that he was nudged out — and that's how even Father Hesburgh described it in his interview. I will take a man of Father Hesburgh's stature at his word. There also was no doubt there was a power struggle there for a while between the new president and the coaching icon, and Father Ted was not going to lose that battle.
Terry Brennan will absolutely tell you that Leahy was fired, as will many others with excellent inside knowledge from that time. I was nine years away from being born, so I have no first-hand knowledge from actually being there. I can only go on who were there at the time.
This is a never ending discussion or debate.
Being somewhat close to the fire it was delicate mixture of both.
I wrote a lengthy summary a few years back which i have kept in mt files..because this pops up all the time and i get asked this same question.
My quick response is that Dad was young and a giant of a coach...Fr. Ted was young and President of one of Americas most prestigious Universities.
The perfect debate ( and thus perfect conflict ) was born.
All i care about is that both men came to love and respect each other ( again in my lengthy summary i wrote about Fr. Ted with dad at his death bed ) they buried the hatchet and realized they had large egos.
In a way Fr. Ted gave my father back to the family..
I will always love Fr. Ted who has always been wonderful to all of us and loved my mom as if she was a sister.
I met with him while on campus 2 years ago and gave me a warm loving 20 minutes..
Thanks, Fred, for sharing that on this forum.
Father Ted hasn't been shy about stating that he was "Machiavellian" about the situation. Terry Brennan was hand-picked as an assistant by Father Ted to eventually succeed your father, but it wasn't anticipated it would occur so soon. From the outside looking in, it doesn't strike me that he was given the pink slip and told to pack his bags. He had to be prodded a little to step down, and I sense he did because he didn't feel like he was venerated anymore the way he used to be.
In some ways, it's similar to Lou Holtz's ouster. From everything I've gathered, Lou was not forced out. He tried to call the bluff of Father Beauchamp and Mike Wadsworth and then got buyer's remorse. In other words, it was Holtz who stepped out on to the ledge ... and I think he was hoping that Wadsworth or Beauchamp would hold the net or plead for him "Don't jump!" When they didn't, Holtz knew he would lose face (and power) with them if he went back inside, so he stepped down because, as he repeated several times, "it's the right thing to do."
Great posts Fred and Lou. Great posts.
Fr. Ted was president during my student days. And it seemed no matter the time of night as I walked across the campus his office light (in the Administration bldg) burned on. Seeing that light - especially after an exhausting night of studying - inspired me to stay the course.
Thank you Fr. Ted for offering Spirit's radiance to many and to me.
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