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Lucky to Continue a Legacy

Paige Roberts

The connection that my family has to the Mount is something especially valuable to me. As the first college that I was introduced to, I remember naming Mount St. Mary's when briefly discussing what schools my friends and I were interested in during lunch my freshman year of high school. I didn't know much about the school besides the fact that my mom and grandpa attended and that the area was breathtaking when surrounded by the mountain's fall foliage. A recent hiking trip to Cunningham Falls, just south of Emmitsburg, with my parents and brother captivated my senses as did the quaintness of the small town and the tastiness of the crab dip at the local Ott House Restaurant and Pub. 

Karen Moore, Mount women's basketball 1982Hearing the fun, lively stories passed down from my grandpa to my mom and flipping through their old yearbooks has always been a bit of an unspoken tradition. Keg parties on Echo field were a regular occurrence when my grandpa, Paul B. Moore ('50), attended the Mount in the late 1940's along with his brother, Ed J. Moore ('48), when it was still an all-male college. My mom, Kam Moore Roberts, played basketball at the Mount in the early 1980's. She recounts spending boisterous nights in the "Ratskeller", an on-campus bar located in the Student Union Building, now Lower McGowan.

Although there are no longer bars on campus or kegs on Echo, one component of campus life that remains the same are the freshmen dorms. The dark wood bedframes and matching closet/desk ensemble in Sheridan Hall are a staple memory for most Mounties, as they are for my mom. As a resident of Brute Hall during my sophomore year, it's riveting to know that I was navigating the same maze-like layout as my grandpa did during his years living there, who was most likely happily crammed into bunkbeds in a four-man room. 

Mount women's 80's vintage basketball teamwearMy mom attended summer basketball camps hosted by the Mount throughout high school, eventually playing as a center on the women's basketball team which blazed their way to a third place finish in the 1982 NCAA division II Tournament. Her favorite memories include team van rides to away games and hanging out in the annex dorms over the winter semester with her hilarious teammates. Being the selfless woman she is, my mom gifted me some of her old gear from her years spent on the team. Wearing her women's basketball windbreaker around campus brings about a sentimental sense of joy and pride within me; plus, it's totally cute and vintage! 

My grandpa, an Irish New Yorker from Long Island, was an economics major and talented writer. Paul Moore was well-liked among his classmates and held the position of art editor for the college's yearbook called the Pridwin at the time. After enlisting in the U.S. Air Force following graduation, he first made a career out of journalism and then worked throughout the public relations sphere. He held various positions including reporter at the Evening Sun (now the Baltimore Sun), director of communications for the Maryland Port Authority, and the first public relations officer for the Maryland Lottery Commission. Not only was he a phenomenal writer, but also a gentleman and "voice of order and calm", becoming known as "the guy everyone turned to", according to a coworker at the Evening Sun. Paul Moore was nothing less than an ethical leader.

Paul Moore, art editor for the yearbook, at his desk

I find it extremely coincidental that although he majored in economics, my grandpa became a highly experienced public relations professional and versatile writer in the world of journalism and communications, which is exactly the path that I can imagine myself walking. I can't deny the desire to live out his legacy through my talents that I've discovered and polished while at the Mount. Even though the Pridwin is no longer in print, there are now plenty of other campus publications like the Mountain Echo newspaper and Lighted Corners literary magazine, both of which I'm thankful to have contributed. I believe my grandpa's time at the Mount guaranteed me for success long before I even knew I would end up here, and for that I am even more grateful. His career inspires me to follow in his footsteps, starting at his (and soon mine, too) alma mater. 

The rich history of the Mount comes to life fror me when recounted by my mom, and once my grandpa, who passed in 2012. Although he is not here to see my brother and I find our second home here, I'm sure he's looking down to guide us in continuing a legacy that he and his brother began. I can only hope that we're making them proud, or at least making them laugh. 

I hope you enjoyed the blast from the past. Thanks for reading! Check back throughout the week for new posts by the other talented My View of MSMU bloggers. 

Paige Roberts