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Rho Lambda Newsletter

Our October 14-15 Reunion is fast approaching! The full 2022 Reunion details are here. Do you play golf? Contact Dennis Clowers if you’d like to play on Friday, the 14th. Don’t forget, the OKC Museum of Art has a Dale Chihuly exhibit, too. He’s a Kappa Epsilon (Washington) Deke, and his glass exhibits demonstrate why he’s arguably the greatest glass artist in history.

If you’d like to help the Brotherhood fund the Reunion, or the Tailgate, you can easily do that here. (Remember, you’ll pay your own tab at the Interurban.) The Bereavement Fund, and our other Donation portals can be found here.

Last month, we explored a few issues about renewing our DKE chapter at OU in 2025. You can read more about that here.

The password we emailed to you opens any file. Don’t have it? Contact us. If you get lost, use your back arrow, or return to oudekes.orgIf anything’s askew, hard to read, or merely weird, leave us a comment below. Thanks!

From The ΔKE ΡΛ Literary Association

Dekes Lion

As summer ends, we look forward to another exciting season of Sooner Football! I’m especially proud of our board and fellow brothers for creating the Rho Lambda Randy Morrison Award. The current DEKE Quarterly has a terrific article showing Brother Fred Streb presenting that award to Roy Obermeyer in Durham, N.C., with members of DKE Headquarters present. Also, our creation of the Randy Morrison Scholarship Fund at OU is part of our legacy, and will help support students long after we disappear into the ether. Terry Miller’s article, “The Republican Primary of 1876 Pitted Brother Against Brother,” is an interesting bit of DKE history. It appeared in the recent DEKE Quarterly, too.
I hope to see you at our annual Rho Lambda Roundup in October. OU’s Class of ’72 Reunion is scheduled for Friday, November 18th.

Kerothen, Bob Tierno, Chairman of the Board

ΡΛ Brother of the Month – ALAN BAUMAN

Yes, that’s Alan in Antarctica. “We like to travel,” he said. “Fran and I were on that National Geographic ship with sixty other people. We spent a week there, staying aboard at midday, but landing on ice floes or going ashore in the mornings and afternoons. The colors of the ice there are fascinating, and so are the scads of penguins; seven different species. It was fairly nice when we were there, in the 30s.

“We spent 4-5 days in British South Georgia, too. The currents bring in huge food stocks, so the wildlife is unbelievable.” I discovered it’s also on the path of icebergs floating north from Antarctica. A news article from 2020 described a 1600-square-mile iceberg that fortunately broke apart before colliding with the island. “Unbelievable’” is the perfect word. South Georgia has 30 million breeding birds, including 7 million penguins, and 250,000 albatrosses. I have a hard time imagining that.

Here’s a photo of Alan with mom Helen and Dad Duane. “I was seven or so in this picture, an only kid.” We laughed about how, back in the day, our parents loved to suit us up in jackets and ties. I think my only skill as a Deke pledge was the ability to tie a lopsided Windsor knot. “I was born in Montana,” Alan said, “and we moved a lot. My dad was in Civil Service. It’s hard moving around when you’re little, but we settled down in Midwest City when I was in the 3rd grade. My dad worked at Tinker AFB then. I played tennis in high school, and some intramural basketball. But I liked to study; I was on the debate team.

“At OU, many of the the friendships I made at the Deke house, like with George Otey and Orin Piepho, have been lifelong. In this picture from ‘72, I’m to the left of Tierno, our pledge master. The Organ Grinder was a strip club owned by the Engineers, and Otey is in front with the afro.” I have to admit, this is the coolest Deke pic I’ve ever seen. I’m glad it’s finally surfaced. Alan and I agreed living in the Deke house was the best. “It was great,” he said. “Every year, there were new people, but that core of members always remained.”

Alan continued, “When I graduated from OU in ‘73, I went to Europe for 3 months, and lived on $7-8 bucks a day. In Pamplona, I ran with the bulls in their fiesta, where a dozen bulls are released and chase you down the streets. We all wore white clothes and red bandanas. The doorways there weren’t very deep, and I was surprised, when the bulls got too close, how fast we could flatten a dozen of us into a single doorway.

“I had a degree in Zoology, and when I got back to the States, I moved to San Francisco, got a menial job, later moving to Virginia, and D.C. Then, I married Fran in ‘78, and returned to OU Med School, inspired by my dad. I graduated with honors in ‘82, and an uncle who went blind from onset diabetes helped convince me to specialize in ophthalmology. My internship and residency, from ’82-‘86, were at the University of Texas Medical Hospital. From there, we moved to Kansas City, where I practiced medicine for the next forty years.

”Fran and I raised our family there. This is a photo we like from maybe 15 years ago. That’s Jeff on the left. He’s older and Ken is the youngest. They’re both married now, living about 20 minutes away from us. We have four grandkids.” We both laughed about how life can seem like being in the Deke house, and then grandkids, but agreed the part in the middle was glorious. “I use Burnsie’s member list to locate Brothers whenever we travel in the States. I had a great time with Bill Nation in Memphis, and Burnsie and Bonnie in Estes Park.”

As Alan said, “We like to travel.” Here’s Fran and Alan in a Buddhist shrine in Bhutan, between India and Nepal. “This prayer drum was covered with bells,” he said. “One rotates it three times while saying three prayers, for themselves, their community, and the universe. In Bhutan, they pray like that all through the day; you can always hear drum bells ringing somewhere.”

You know, I can’t think of a wiser way for a traveling duo to see their world.

                                              “It is better to travel well, than to arrive.”   –   Buddha

                                                                                                                                                                                 Ron Sorter

Leave a comment if you wish, or contact us here. Keep an eye out for October’s Newsletter, and on September 15, don’t forget to celebrate National Linguini Day.

Can you help us fund our activities? $50 a year is less than $5/month, and it would help our chapter immensely. Thank You!

Please contact Rich Burns if you know of any Brothers who’ve passed away, or who aren’t receiving our Newsletter.

RIP, Randy


The ΡΛ Commo Crew