Program Success March 2019 | Page 3

Dr . Os , vald P Bronson´┐Ż Sr . July 19 , 1927 - February 17 , 2019 '' My Frientls´┐Ż My Frientls "

Today , we said goodbye to one of Dr . Bethune ' s outstanding sons , Dr . Oswald P. Bronson , Sr ., President Emeritus , Bethune-Cookman University . Despite the many demands on his time , he was a family man . He was a devoted husband and an affectionate father to their children .
During the " Celebration of His Life Service ", many thoughts raced through my mind . First and foremost , our college will be a living monument to his devotion to youth , to higher education and to humanity .
Bethune-Cookman University has an outstanding legacy , a storied history and a reputation as one of the top HBCUs in the country . Dr . Oswald P. Bronson did his part to further the advancement of our university and we will always be indebted to him for his commitment to Excellence . The world also owes him for his dedication to Dr . Bethune ' s vision , her school and the community that surrounded it . Bethune-Cookman University made some major strides during his leadership .
As I sat there listening to the presenters , I recalled some of my experiences with Dr . Bronson over the years . He was the keynote speaker at our church , Greater Payne Chapel AME in Jacksonville in 1994 . During his presentation he announced the establishment of the Rev . Marvin Zanders & A . Ray Brinson scholarship . It was awarded to one of our youth members who enrolled at B-CC that fall and graduated in 1998 . She returned home and is employed with the Duval County School Board . She is married to a prominent Minister / Police Officer and they are the proud parents of two sons .
After one of our Gateway Classic Football Weekends , I sent a note to a key member of the Steering Committee from the college and copied him . He told her that it should be cherished because , " if Brother Brinson took the time to send you a personal note , you must have done an excellent job because he doesn ' t hand those out loosely ."
Maintaining a presence in Jacksonville was important to him because a significant number of students matriculated from this area each year . The majority of our graduate teachers were hired by the Duval County School Board because " they hit the ground ready to teach on day one ," he often said . Jacksonville was like " a second home for us ", with more than one thousand alumni living in the area plus we played a football game here for more than 50 years . Dr . Bronson always valued the presence of Bethune-Cookman University in North Florida .
The construction of the Mary McLeod Bethune Fine Arts Building in 1991 and the Mary McLeod Bethune Performing Arts Auditorium in 2002 were signature accomplishments that he cherished a great deal . He was a consummate fund raiser with an eye always on potential donors . Some high profile visitors often stated that whenever he was around them , they kept their wallets and checkbooks close because he certainly would find a way to make an appeal for Bethune-Cookman College .
Dr . Bronson had a few a few other sayings that we often heard . 4 , 5 or sometimes 6 years , we ' ll return a sparkling diamond ."
He would say to parents , " Send us your lump of coal and in
To some audiences , when commending members of his team he would say , " Please give them a rousing round of applause because I can ' t give them a raise ... but we can give them some praise !"
It would be impossible to mention all of the celebrities , politicians , entertainers , athletes , renowned musicians , etc . that he invited and engaged in the Bethune-Cookman College experience . There is not enough room to list all of the students he advised , counselled , consoled , and praised over the years . There would be a record number of education professionals he coached , groomed and developed .
To paraphrase President Abraham Lincoln , the world will little note , nor long remember what was said during Dr . Bronson ' s service today , but we can never forget what he did during his lifetime ! He was a splendid man , an honest giant of great intellect and a loving spirit . What he preached , he practiced . He combined his wit , charm , an unlimited energy , with a genial personality .
It was my privilege to know him and to work with him through many of the years he served as President of our Alma Mater . I can ' t think of anyone who tried or worked harder to be a true Servant Leader , to make Daytona Beach , the State of Florida , and the United States of America - Better .

May he enjoy his eternal rest and the rewards he has earned . ll . Ray Brinson Trustee , Bethune-Cookman University President , National Alumni Association , 2010-14

Celebration of Live Dr . Oswald Perry Bronson , Sr . Bethune Cookman University President
A . Ray Brinson Daytona Beach , Florida March 2019