A crowning achievement

Royalty candidates reminisce of days past at MU
Monday, October 20, 2003 | 12:00 a.m. CDT; updated 5:50 a.m. CDT, Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Homecoming allows 10 MU seniors to take a break from senior-year stress to receive the royal treatment as King and Queen candidates.

Some discovered the royalty position rekindled many of their dearest memories of old MU.

Janae Barker remembers when she and her boyfriend decided to take a run through Francis Quadrangle’s sprinklers. “We were taking a walk on campus late one night and the sprinklers came on, so we decided to have some fun and run through them.”

But sometimes the memories that stand out are the ones that weren’t so funny at the time, but are now the best ones to relate.

Neil Dwyer’s most embarrassing moment came during his freshman year while leaving a large psychology class. He had not been paying attention, ran into a pole, flipped over and landed head-first in front of the entire class.

“They found it funny at the moment, and in time I’ve also found it extremely amusing,” he said.

After applications and interviews, selected candidates were approached at their homes with the good news. Many were overwhelmed and shocked when Homecoming Steering Committee members showed up.

Samaia Muhammad was sick the day she found out and decided to go to bed early that night. Two hours later, some members of the committee woke her up.

“They could see how sick I was and felt bad about waking me up, but I was so excited, it didn’t matter,” she said.

If they were ultimately selected king or queen, some reflected on what the title would mean if it were more than just ceremonial.

Julie Wrather would eliminate tuition, turn Brady Fountain into the fountain of youth so she could stay here forever and ban anyone from Lawrence, Kan. from ever stepping foot in Columbia again.

Michael Lang would try to highlight some of MU’s more outstanding leaders who don’t get the recognition they deserve. Dwyer would try to reform children who are Kansas University fans into becoming MU fans.

“I would go and make sure that every little kid who owns a KU shirt, pennant or souvenir, would have it replaced with a Mizzou one,” he said.

Although they all can’t wear the tiara, each agrees they have made friends and shared memories as homecoming royalty.

“I look at being part of Top 10 as an honor,” Brett Ordnung said. “It has let me know that I have grown as a person thanks to MU.”

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