Erlene Bowman Was A True Best Friend

Published 4:17 pm Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Editor, The Herald:

In memory of my wonderful friend, Erlene Bowman.

Erlene Bowman was the best kind of friend anyone could ever hope for. She was my best kind of friend, always there, always available, always putting me first. I am having a very sad time living without her.

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She was also the best kind of friend Hampden-Sydney College ever had. She loved that school more than anyone I know. She did more advertising for the College than one could imagine. She never missed an opportunity to talk about H-SC wherever she went. Many alumni would make the bookstore their first stop when they returned for big weekends just to see her. They would bring their wives to meet her, and then their children. She was their “mother away from home.” She fed then, loaned them money, gave them money, gave them rides, and selected birthday presents for the Moms from the boys and from the Mothers to the boys. It was a regular occurrence for Mothers to call her to take care of their son's birthday gifts. She quite often gave solid, sensible, and stern personal advice to students. And they would come to her for that advice. Sometimes she could give it when she had not been asked because she could see that the student needed to hear it. The students there now are missing an important part of what being at Hampden-Sydney used to be.

Erlene's birthday was August 22. We always went out to dinner on our birthdays and we always made that time special. She will never be replaced in my heart.

Virginia W. Johnson