Then Murray ’69 and Martha Lattimore Hughes ’70


Murray ’69 and Martha Lattimore Hughes ’70

1968 was a tumultuous and landmark year in America and for Furman undergraduates. On a personal level, that was also the year we attended the play “A Man For All Seasons” in McAlister Auditorium. It was our first date after knowing each other for two years in the Furman Band where we played bass (Murray) and flute (Martha) under the direction of Dan Ellis. So many memories come to mind from those years, especially the dedicated professors who were also friends: Jay Walters and Ernie Harrill in political science; T.T. Goldsmith, Marguerite Chiles and Carey Crantford, friends from whom no courses were taken but who were open to students; L.D. Johnson and Jim Pitts in the chaplain’s office; working together at the Shriners Hospital through the Collegiate Educational Service Corps (now the Heller Service Corps); football games in old Sirrine Stadium and basketball games in Memorial Auditorium; and, of course, the band under “Daddy Dan” Ellis and Furman Singers (Martha) under DuPre Rhame.

It was certainly no accident that we each chose Furman, as we are both definitely considered “legacies.” In fact, when attending the luncheon provided for the families of graduating seniors for our sons, Daniel ’00 and David ’05, there was an informal contest to see which graduating senior had the most relatives who attended Furman. Each time, counting the Hughes, Roper and Lattimore families (Martha’s mother Alice Roper ’44 and father Ralph Lattimore ’45), they stopped counting when the total approached 35, as that was enough to win without going further.

One of us (Martha) went on to graduate school and a teaching career, while the other (Murray) attended law school. We moved to Pickens, South Carolina, in 1974 and still live here. One of the best discoveries was that from Pickens it is only 17 miles to Furman’s back gate. So for all of the years since, there have been countless athletic and artistic events to attend, and now membership in the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute with new delightful friends and hiking companions.

Looking to the future, we remember Jim Pitts’s invitational stance, “Walk with me,” and we hope others will consider their potential impact as true legacies
of Furman University.


About the Authors:

Murray ’69 and Martha Lattimore Hughes ’70 are retired and live in Pickens, South Carolina.

Now  Charles Miles II ’23

After spending three years at Furman, I’ve experienced unimaginable growth as a student and as an individual. It’s no secret that Furman students are challenged academically, but outside of the classroom, Furman presents a bounty of opportunities for students to develop themselves every day.

Charles Miles II ’23

For the past three years, I’ve had the pleasure of being a part of Furman’s Shucker Leadership Institute (SLI), two years as a fellow and one year as a program coordinator. SLI is an opportunity for a group of students to develop their leadership skills. For me, it was so much more. As a Shucker fellow, I engaged with other fellows in thought-provoking discussions about leadership, values and much more. I found a diverse community of like-minded individuals who wanted to see each other succeed. My experience as a Shucker fellow extended far beyond becoming a better leader, as I also became more motivated and inspired to be a voice for change on Furman’s campus. Since then, I’ve advocated for new ideas in the mathematics department, the Furman Humanities Center and many other areas.

My experience as a program coordinator for SLI truly opened my eyes. The SLI curriculum for students is organized by other students, which makes way for a unique opportunity for those who serve on its leadership team. As a fellow, I never realized the intentionality the leadership team needed to possess to organize a program that would benefit others. This new perspective gave me another opportunity to grow.

Furman is unique because students are pushed to be more than just a student. There are a great number of groups like SLI in the Furman community that provide thought-provoking experiences for students to grow as individuals. I believe that college is more than a steppingstone to reach professional life. Instead, college is a place where young students become thoughtful, well-rounded people. Furman University does just that.


About the Author:

Charles Miles II ’23, from Fort Mill, South Carolina, is a mathematics and communication studies double major. He is a 2020 recipient of the Joseph Vaughn Scholarship.

Next  Kyle C. Longest


Kyle C. Longest

Since transitioning into my current role as associate academic dean, I have become aware of a whole side of the university to which I was previously unaware. I had worked with students experiencing challenging personal situations as an instructor. Yet, the depth and complexity of these trials were always a bit opaque, and how these students always seemed to bounce back and maintain their progress in my course was even more of a mystery.

I now have had the great fortune to have that curtain pulled back. And, of course, it really isn’t magic. Rather, it is the product of the tremendous and relentless efforts of an entire team of personnel dedicated to helping our students through even the most trying situations and the daily struggles that only seem to be mounting for young people today.

While it may seem somewhat superficial, the best I’ve come up with to explain this system is to compare it to the Justice League. Whenever a student is in trouble, a warning signal is sent out and an entire team of specialized professionals activates to create a care plan and respond accordingly. Where this analogy breaks down, in addition to no one on our team wearing a cape or full-body leotard, is that our superheroes don’t just swoop in and solve the problem in a tidy 10-minute montage. Rather, they often stand alongside the students for months or years at time, slowly but surely bringing them through, so that they can walk across that stage, and guiding them to becoming stronger and better people in the process.

So I guess this is my way of saying thank you and making sure that this other side of the university no longer goes unnoticed. Of making sure that the next time we hear about the achievements of one of our students or their stories of overcoming adversity, we may all take a second to give just a brief thanks to our own team of superheroes who have had at least some small part of that student’s success and definitely a significant part in the continued thriving of the university.


About the Author:

Kyle C. Longest is Furman’s associate academic dean and an associate professor of sociology.

At this year’s event, students invited the campus community into their research, service learning, creative works and other engaged learning experiences.

Students from Africa invited their classmates to see their respective home countries, in some cases for the first time.

Lt. Col. Sarah M. Whitten is the first woman to chair Furman’s Department of Military Science and serve as the head of the university’s ROTC.