• Longtime professor lived his life “Bold as a Bear”

    Battles familyLongtime Baylor professor Burnie Battles, BA ’65, MS ’66, died in June in an automobile accident. After earning two degrees from Baylor, he served on the School of Education’s faculty for 42 years. At the time, I read plenty of memories from his former colleagues and students, but none of them hit me like this recent narrative from a woman who just happened to live across the street from Battles and his wife, Mary Helen.

    Battles was honored posthumously as this year’s Outstanding Professor during Baylor’s Homecoming game last weekend. His wife, children and grandchildren accepted the honor on his behalf, all wearing a shirt specially made for the occasion that read “Bold as a Bear” — the English translation for the German name Burnie.

    “There are so many things I could say about Burnie,” writes the author, photographer Elizabeth Marquess, who captured some special shots of the family to remember the day. “He always had a smile on his face and had the greatest laugh.  He laughed with his whole body.  He loved the Baylor Bears… He was a Baylor Bear… He had an undeniable love for his family.  He had a deep faith in God.  And the one thing I admired him most for, is that he had to be the best granddad I had ever witnessed.” The author’s list goes on and on, and is definitely worth reading. Battles was truly a man who “ran in such a way as to get the prize,” as the family’s t-shirts read, quoting 1 Corinthians.

    Sic ’em, Prof. Battles, for representing Baylor so boldly in a life well led!