Dr. Amy Broeseker is a beloved faculty member in our McWhorter School of Pharmacy. This past Saturday she drove to campus, stopping by the recycling bin in Beeson Woods to drop off a few items left over after clearing out the home her parents had occupied in Florida since 1957. As she placed the material in the bin, she noticed that one of the boxes still had her mother’s handwriting, so she got out her phone to take a photograph of the box. I imagine that Amy then took a few minutes to wipe away tears. She returned to her car, did a few additional errands and drove home—to discover that her cell phone was missing. She searched, to no avail. Then she called her number from her land line (yes, Amy apparently still has a land line) to see if she could hear the ring in her house. No success. She was about to hang up when someone said, “Hello.”
The person who answered Amy’s phone is Jaleel Laguins, a Samford student. As turns out, Jaleel was driving through the Beeson Woods parking lot with his father on Saturday, shortly after Amy’s visit. He noticed the cell phone lying near the recycling bin, stopped, picked it up, and had the presence of mind to think that the owner might call the phone, seeking to retrieve it. Jaleel was correct, although he may have been surprised that Amy called so quickly. Fifteen minutes later, Amy met Jaleel on campus and her phone, packed with photos of her family and other important information, was thoughtfully returned to her. Jaleel was gracious and respectful.
Returning home, Amy wondered about this young man, Jaleel Laguins, so she googled his name. To her surprise, she learned that he is new to Samford, transferring from the University of Georgia. When he was recruited as a senior in high school, he was rated among the top 10 inside linebackers in the nation. Amy even tracked down this story: https://collegefootballtalk.nbcsports.com/2018/05/25/sanford-to-samford-ex-georgia-lb-jaleel-laguins-heads-to-fcs/.
Amy has this to say to Coach Chris Hatcher: “Coach Hatcher, your team has not yet played a game this season and I know that Samford is slated to win the SoCon this year. I certainly wish you and your team all the best. However, even if you don’t win a game this year, you will have had a winning season in my book if your players have the character of Jaleel Laguins.”
The world is better because of Jaleel Laguins, a young man who is switching bulldogs, but maintaining his character. The world is also better for a wonderful, understandably absent-minded faculty member named Amy Broeseker.