This spring, young alumni from 2000 to 20016 were asked to write letters to Head of Schools John and Pam Buxton thanking them for their 17 years at the helm of Culver Academies. Those emails, notes, and letters were gathered and printed in an Our Class Tributes book which was presented to the Buxtons during a brief ceremony Wednesday afternoon. Twenty-three young alumni, many working at summer camp, came to presentation.
In addition to the letters, 163 young alumni contributed $34,494 to a tuition scholarship fund in the Buxtons’ honor. The Class of 2016 also donated its senior class gift of $19,000 for scholarships.
As Claire Haldewang ’15 said, “Mr. and Mrs. Buxton have truly impacted Culver. Not only have they impacted Culver itself, but those who surround it. The students, faculty, staff, and alumni have all been touched by the Buxtons in their own unique way.”
Ibrahim Fetuga ’01 recalled meeting the Buxtons when they came to visit the school during the interview process in 1999.
“I met them with a couple of other students in the dining hall. I recall them asking each one of us about our ‘story’ and giving us their undivided attention,” he said. “Later that evening, there was a basketball game in Fleet gymnasium. As the stands cleared at halftime, I recall seeing the Buxtons sitting in the top right corner of the bleachers. The same place you have seen them sit for the last 17 years, whether it was a basketball game or volleyball game or a pep rally for one of the numerous successful teams Culver has had during their tenure.”
Well, the Buxtons are the parents of our home away from home. All 800 of us.
“Like we always say, Culver is our home away from home,” Haldewang said. “Well, the Buxtons are the parents of our home away from home. All 800 of us. There was not one soccer game, Equestrienne show, or regatta I did not see the Buxtons on the sideline cheering me and my team on.”
She added, “I thank you for being on the sidelines, I thank you for welcoming us into your home, I thank you for the many ‘Tower of Terror’ speeches, and, most of all, thank you for being who you are: kind, genuine, supportive, and so much more than words cannot even describe.”
In presenting the book, Fetuga said, “On behalf of the graduates from the classes of 2000-2016, we say thank you for always putting us first.”