For seven decades, student athletes at Life Pacific have represented our institution well as their lives were shaped in service of Christ, His Church and the world. In February, we honored these athletes with inductions in the newly designed Life Pacific Hall of Fame.
They say a picture is worth a thousand words. If that is true, what story will a thousand pictures say about Life Pacific College and our student athletes – both past and present? As we celebrate our transition from college to university, photos from the past remind us of the journey and the incredible leaders and alumni who have contributed to the Life we enjoy today.
Take one look at this photo of the 1949 Life Baseball Team and you’ll see how far we’ve come in 70 years – just look at those athletic shoes or the baseball mitt for starters.
The jerseys may look different today but the hearts beating inside our student athletes still focus on the same values of teamwork, giving their best and being a godly example in competition and in life. Can you see it in the eyes of these student athletes from long ago?
Some of Life Pacific’s best competed as student athletes. Respected Foursquare legends Jack Hayford, Ron Mehl, Roy Hicks, Jr., Paul Risser and Herb Schneidau may have led the way, but countless others comprised the teams that represented the institution we love in varsity and intramural sports including baseball, basketball, football, cross country and cheer.
Building upon this rich tradition, Life Pacific celebrated its second annual Hall of Fame ceremony in February with the induction of Ron Mehl and the 1995 Women’s Volleyball National Championship Team.
Led by Head Coach Jason Shipman and Assistant Coach Rick Meyer, the women’s volleyball team was the first women’s program at the college to earn a national championship. Team Captain Stacy Segawa Knapp, Cathe Cammarota, and Stephanie Shipman Stillwell received special honors from the NBCAA league.
Ron Mehl is the first individual athlete inducted into the Hall of Fame. Many knew Ron as a much loved pastor and leader, but some may not know that during his student years at Life Pacific, he was also an outstanding athlete. He competed in varsity basketball, baseball, tennis and intramural football All Stars, as well as serving as the Secretary-Treasurer of the Lettermen’s Club.
Sports significantly shaped Ron’s life as a student and lingered in the legacy that he left Life Pacific.
During Ron’s ministry as a pastor, he authored several books, the proceeds of which he donated to the college. The generosity of his many gifts enabled the college to build the Hicks Student Center, which today houses the athletics program and Mehl Court.
The induction ceremony included a president’s reception and presentation of awards in McPherson Chapel, unveiling the Hall of Fame in the newly redesigned foyer of the Hicks Student Center, and the presentation of inductees during half time at the Warrior men’s basketball game on the court named in Ron Mehl’s memory.
The uniforms look different today and the high performance equipment student athletes use soars above that of bygone years, but the foundation laid by student athletes before us offers current student athletes greater opportunity to shine and be their best now and in the future.
Our athletic journey at Life Pacific has just begun. Current student athletes continue to lay themselves down for the benefit of others who will follow in their steps perhaps another 70 years from today.