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Spring 2011: Letters to the Editor

A Star Shone in ‘the Liberty Tubes’

The Summer 2010 story about the late Jack Crossan, a basketball star in his own right, brought back many fond memories to me, as I attended ISTC from 1950 to 1954.

Like many students, I was a friend of Jack Crossan and watched him play every home basketball game from 1952 to 1954 in Waller Gymnasium. At that time, we referred to Waller Gym as the Liberty Tubes, because of its poor lighting.

Jack had the most dynamic shot I have ever seen in a basketball star. He never arched the ball. It left his hand in a straight trajectory to the basket and would ripple the cords and never touch the rim. Just an amazing shot from an amazing player, as his record 24 points per game will attest to.

It would have been nice had the story mentioned the name of Don “Bones” Cavalero ’56 of Butler, because Jack and “Bones” were inseparable pals on and off the court.

I would like to thank the Sig Ep Five, all friends of mine, for their tireless and philanthropic efforts in establishing the Jack Crossan Memorial Scholarship. And, I’m sure that my small contribution of naming Don Cavalero will make the late Jack Crossan happy, wherever he might be.

—Don “Buff” Bufagna ’54
Johnstown, Pa.

Enabling a Life’s Work

I was saddened to read that Dr. Morton Morris passed away in April. Dr. Morris was the impetus and support behind my education and career. Beginning with my freshman year in 1976, Dr. Morris was both a professor for my special education coursework and my advisor. Upon completion of my bachelor’s degree in 1970, Dr. Morris convinced me to continue with my master’s. He made graduate school possible by awarding me a federal fellowship that covered my expenses.

The day after receiving my M.Ed. in August 1971, I moved to Virginia, where I taught special education for five years. Congress got serious in 1976 about ensuring the availability of a free appropriate public education to all children with disabilities and enacted P.L. 94-142, the Education for All Handicapped Children Act. I was selected for a job with the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs, that year and retired in 2010 from a long, successful career advocating for and implementing the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). Since 1987, I had administered nationwide the Preschool Grants Program under Section 619 of the IDEA. My life’s work would not have been possible without the sound educational background in special education made possible by Dr. Morris.

I found it ironic that the federal fellowship Dr. Morris awarded me was made available under the federal law that we administered out of the Office of Special Education Programs! The application process for those personnel preparation funds was extensive and tedious, meaning that Dr. Morris had to work long and hard to meet the requirements to secure those funds for IUP and for his graduate students.

I will be forever grateful for his guidance and trust in me and the positive impact he had on my life and career. I extend my heartfelt condolences to his family and hope they gain some comfort by knowing that Dr. Morris influenced many lives in a lasting and meaningful way.

—Nancy Treusch’70, M’71
Warrenton, Va.