To hear Tom (BBA ’50) and Margaret Stone describe it, 1950 doesn’t sound so different from 2013: a transformative new stadium taking shape, high expectations for Baylor’s ascendant football team, a strong Baylor basketball program, and people everywhere talking about what a great time it was to be a Baylor Bear.
The Stones were newlyweds in 1950 when they attended the first-ever game at Baylor Stadium, a 34-7 win over Houston. They remember a stadium that was still under construction, but none of the then-record 25,000 in attendance cared that it wasn’t yet complete.
“It felt like it was big-time,” Tom remembers. “And Baylor won pretty soundly. So it was a great day.”
More than six decades later, the Stones plan on also attending the final game at the stadium now known as Floyd Casey. Their love for Baylor has never waned; over the past 63 years, they had two children, Tom and Karoletha (BME ’79), attended countless Baylor concerts, established a scholarship, joined the Board of Advocacy for the School of Social Work, continued to hold season tickets for football and men’s and women’s basketball, and devoted a “Baylor room” in their house to flags, pennants, stuffed bears and photos.
But Saturday, even as they look forward to the next home of Baylor football, they’ll be looking back.
“I don’t know how we couldn’t look back and remember that (first) game, being newlyweds,” Margaret says. “We have sweet memories of that whole time.”
Tom’s voice cracks slightly as he chimes in, “It’s hard to imagine that this is the final game. God’s been good to us and given us 63 wonderful years of marriage and allowed us to be a part of this at Baylor. I remember that first game and — when you’re young, you don’t think about something so new closing and that you would live to see it. It’s overwhelming having been able to be a part and to witness history.”
It should come as no surprise that you shouldn’t try to schedule an appointment with the Stones on August 31, 2014, just after their 64th anniversary. Their calendar that day is booked; God willing, you’ll find them at the Baylor Stadium debut.
Sic ’em, Tom and Margaret!
You might also like:
* Bears prepare to celebrate Floyd Casey Stadium finale Saturday (Dec. 2013)
* Who was Floyd Casey? And why is his name on Baylor’s stadium? (Nov. 2013)
* A look back at Floyd Casey Stadium’s first Homecoming game (Oct. 2013)