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Jerry Returns to Tech as Campus Ambassador

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Arka Tech student newspaper stated that Jerry exhibited “determination” and that his only bad habit seemed to be a fondness for chewing on shoes. The article went on to state that Jerry was “always present at anything of importance at the armory,” which was a social center of campus at that time and the site of Arkansas Tech home basketball games. When the original Jerry passed away in late 1937, the headline in the Arka Tech proclaimed “Campus Loses Mascot in Passing of Jerry.” Now, Jerry is back. “Jerry represents an admirable characteristic that has defined Arkansas Tech for more than 100 years --- persistence,” said Susie Nicholson, vice president for student services and university relations at Arkansas Tech. “Jerry’s never-say-die attitude is reflected in the way Arkansas Tech has persevered through tough times. Jerry’s spirit lives inside Tech students who overcome every obstacle to realize the life-changing benefits of a college education. Jerry’s competitive drive is exemplified by the efforts of Wonder Boys and Golden Suns student-athletes on the fields and courts of play. “We invite the Tech Family to welcome Jerry home,” continued Nicholson. “He represents an important connection between our past, our present and our future.” Among those scheduled to participate in the ceremony re-introducing Jerry to campus are Dr. Robert A. Young Jr., Clay Wyllia, Major General William Wofford and representatives from the Arkansas Tech U.S. Army Reserve Officers Training Corps (ROTC) program. Dr. Young, grandson and son of the original Jerry’s owners, has continued the family tradition of involvement at Arkansas Tech by serving as president of the Arkansas Tech Foundation, as an avid fan of the Wonder Boys and Golden Suns and by supporting annual student awards named in honor of his grandmother and father. Wyllia is a senior from Atkins and president of the Arkansas Tech Student Government Association, which has accepted a leadership role in the care and promotion of Jerry. Wofford serves as adjutant general for the Arkansas National Guard. Member of the Arkansas Tech Class of 1971, he was inducted into the Arkansas Tech Hall of Distinction in 2008. During the ceremony, Wofford will place Jerry under the care of Arkansas Tech U.S. Army ROTC students. Those students will serve as Jerry’s caretakers when he is on campus. “Students from the U.S. Army ROTC program at Arkansas Tech were selected to serve as Jerry’s on-campus caretakers as a means of carrying forward the bond that existed between the original Jerry and the National Guardsmen on campus in the 1930s,” said Nicholson. For more information about Jerry, visit www.atu.edu/jerry. The life and times of Jerry will be documented through the Arkansas Tech University Facebook page and via Twitter @ArkansasTech.]]>