Athletic hall honors alumni
Five members were inducted into the new Bowdoin College Hall of Honor on Saturday, October 19. The members, C. Nelson Corey, '39, Jill Isenhart, '86, Kenneth Martin, '69, Joan Benoit Samuelson, '79, and Sidney Watson, were chosen out of 120 nominees.
Alumni and supporters of Bowdoin athletics attended the ceremony at a brunch in Thorne dining hall.
The five inaugural inductees "represent the best of the best of Bowdoin athletics," said Mary King '80 in her welcome address. According to King, one of the goals of the ceremony was to celebrate "all that athletics has meant to those of us who have spent time beneath these pines."
Commenting on the function of Hall of Honor, Director of Athletics Jeff Ward explained, "The creation of the hall helps [students] remember that they are on the same team with the inductees. Their accomplishments fill us with pride and raise our expectations."
Sean Hanley, who presented Nelson Corey's induction, praised Corey as being an "intense athlete [who had] an ability to balance his intensity on the playing field with humor." Once a star baseball, hockey, and football player at Bowdoin, Corey came back to coach those sports as well as lacrosse. Remembering his days as Bowdoin's first lacrosse coach, Corey admitted, "No one played the game there was one book written about lacrosse, and I would read it every night like the Scripture."
In her induction acceptance, Jill Isenhart praised the "camaraderie and chance to work together with teammates and coaches" she experienced in her athletic career. "The foundation gained from playing sports has proved more valuable than anything I gained from books and professors," she added.
Presenting Joan Benoit Samuelson's induction was Dana Krueger '99, who told Samuelson, "You are, without question, the world's finest distance runner your accomplishments propelled women's running to the national consciousness." Samuelson, a four-time All-American, recounted the "trials and tribulations of practicing with men's cross country and track" and training that she found "challenging and fulfilling," before the days of established women's sports.
The final induction was Sid Watson, a member of the Hockey Hall of Fame. Watson coached Bowdoin's hockey team from 1959 to 1983, and served as athletic director from 1981 to 1998.
Thanking the college in his acceptance, Watson said, "I enjoyed every day of getting up and coming here If I had to do it I again, I wouldn't want it any other way. I have had a wonderful time [at] Bowdoin College." He joked that in the course of his time at Bowdoin, "some of the chants [at games] have changed."
Henry Burns, a member of the Hall of Honor selection committee, remarked on the connections that Bowdoin athletics fosters among its athletes. Burns declared that there are "connections among everybody. Nels Corey hired Sid Watson, who was here during Joan Benoit's time. They tell a story of Bowdoin athletics together. [We are] picking individuals, but honoring entire an entire spectrum of Bowdoin athletics."