Two long time friends of York College recently went to their eternal reward: James “Jim” Wilkison and Margaret Lee Blackburn.
Wilkison served on the York College board of trustees from May 1990 to December 2005. In 1994, the college recognized him for the special service he gave during the transition to a four year program by awarding him an honorary Doctor of Laws degree.
Wilkison had a long career with Shell Oil prior to his service at York College. In his retirement years, he was very active with the churches of Christ and was a vocal advocate of Christian education.
Margaret Blackburn is remembered by York College alumni from the 1960s as the secretary to the dean—Dr. Mabrey Miller. She was also the “chapel checker” for many years. She and her husband Royce wore many hats at York College during their years here. Royce was a field representative and managed the college farm, which provided much of the food consumed by the student body. He was affectionately referred to as “The Cattle Rustler” as he often returned to campus with a few cows in his trailer, acquired from generous donors.
Prior to their years at York College, Royce was a minister at the church of Christ in Bellevue, Neb. They continued working in ministry for many years after leaving YC. Two of the couple’s children attended York College: Bonnie (Blackburn) Ellis ’69 and Alan Blackburn ’74.
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