A few notes to start the week …
Tributes roll in from high school sports world for Dr. Hagen. The time Taylor Hawkins checked in at North White. Candidate debates tonight. Brian Lamb, heading home next week
Today’s edition of the Based in Lafayette reporting project is sponsored by Purdue University’s Presidential Lecture Series, featuring Purdue President Mitch Daniels’ Tuesday, March 29, conversation with Purdue alumna Julie Wainwright, founder of The RealReal. For more details, scroll to the end of today’s edition.
A few notes to start the week, still not sure what to make of Will Smith smacking Chris Rock at the Oscars …
DR. HAGEN’S PRESENCE: You could always count on catching Dr. Robert Hagen along the fence at Scheumann Stadium during Lafayette Jeff football games. He’d worked with so many athletes in town, as an orthopedic surgeon, he usually knew the score when it came to Greater Lafayette’s young athletes. In our case, he always wanted to know how things were going for our daughter, whether she was enjoying her time with teams at Jeff and relaying something specific that let us know he knew about the next race or meet. It was tough to hear that Dr. Hagen died Friday. He was 66. The cause of death wasn’t immediately available.
In a 2016 interview, Hagen told J&C reporter Sam King that he made sure high school athletes made it to the front of the line in his work because they had such a small window of time to compete: “Most of these people aren’t going to play at a high level anywhere else, but it’s still important to them. It’s a big part of their life. I don’t want them to miss out. I treat them like a college athlete or a professional athlete.”
His support for Lafayette Jeff and other schools in the community came through in the tributes that stacked up as news spread. Here’s a sampling.
Looks as if arrangements are being handled by Soller-Baker Funeral Home in Lafayette.
THAT TIME TAYLOR HAWKINS CHECKED IN AT NORTH WHITE: The Gen X/Millennial outpouring has been strong after the death of Foo Fighters drummer Taylor Hawkins. He was 50. Among the clips making the rounds was this under-the-radar moment, courtesy of the time Hawkins popped in remotely at North White High School, 45 minutes north of Lafayette. Teacher Todd Shriver and others at the small high school in Monon have cultivated an amazing stable of pop culture personalities and current history standouts for a series of social students and music classes, including electives History of the ‘80s, History of Rock and Roll and Garage Band (where students create their own bands). I’m a fan of what they do up there.
One afternoon in 2020, North White interviewed John Stamos – star of “Full House” and now part of the Beach Boys – a regular guest at North White. As a preamble, Stamos invited Hawkins to send a message to North White. And he did. Here it is, courtesy of Shriver.
BRIAN LAMB, BACK HOME: Lafayette native Brian Lamb – founder of C-SPAN, namesake of Purdue’s School of Communication and host of local TV’s “Dance Date,” circa 1961 – will be back for a series of events on campus an in the region. Here are two open to the public.
In Delphi, April 5: The Delphi Preservation Society and Delphi Opera House will host an evening with Lamb and Delphi native Abbie VanSickle, a Marshall Project reporter who won a Pulitzer Prize in 2021 for her role in a yearlong investigation into the use of police dogs. The event is part the society’s Legacy Series, which showcases people with roots in Carroll County. (VanSickle grew up in Delphi and is a 2000 graduate of Delphi Community High School. Lamb’s grandfather, Peter Lamb, was part of the Delphi Dramatic Club, with his signature on a back wall at the renovated Delphi Opera House.) The pair will be interviewed by WLFI anchor Jeff Smith, following a dinner. For ticket information, go to www.delphioperahouse.org/tickets.
At Purdue, April 6: Lamb will bring Harold Holzer, a Lincoln historian, to Purdue for the Center for C-SPAN Scholarship and Engagement’s annual Center for C-SPAN Conversation with Brian Lamb. Holzer’s latest book is “The Presidents vs. the Press: The Endless Battle Between the White House and the Media – From Founding Fathers to Fake News.” The free event will be 6 p.m. April 6 in Fowler Hall in Purdue’s Stewart Center.
BEER, MURALS AND THE ARTS: Tickets are available for Tap & Go, a craft beer walk/fundraiser hosted by The Arts Federation from 3-6 p.m. April 9. The event will be in various places in the Wabash Avenue Neighborhood, just south of downtown Lafayette, where The Arts Federation has staged the Wabash Walls mural project in recent years. Eight Greater Lafayette brewers will be there: Brokerage Brewing Company, Escape Velocity Brewing, Knapptronix Brewing Co., Lafayette Brewing Company, People’s Brewing Company, Teays River Brewing & Public House, Thieme & Wagner and the Tippecanoe Homebrewers Circle. Tickets are $40, available in advance at www.theartsfederation.org/tap.
GOP STATEHOUSE DISTRICTS’ DEBATE: I know this was in Sunday, but just a reminder …
Republican candidates running in two Indiana General Assembly districts will debate Monday night in Lafayette. On tap in debates hosted at Duncan Hall by the Tippecanoe County Republican Party and Republican Women’s Club:
House District 41: Three Republicans – Richard Bagsby, Mark Genda and Shane Weist – are running in a redrawn district that includes the eastern part of Tippecanoe County and parts of Clinton and Boone counties. The winner in the May 3 primary will face Democrat Greg Woods. No incumbent is running, after Rep. Tim Brown, a Crawfordsville Republican, announced he planned to retire after this term.
Senate District 23: In another seat without an incumbent, four candidates – Christian Beaver, Paula Copenhaver, Spencer Deery and Bill Webster – will be on the Republican ballot. The winner in the primary will face Democrat David Sanders in the November general election. Senate District 23 covers all or parts of Tippecanoe, Vermillion, Parke, Fountain, Warren and Montgomery counties. It will essentially be an open seat, after state Sen. Phil Boots, a Crawfordsville Republican, was drawn out of the district and has since announced he plans to retire at the end of this term.
The hourlong debates start at 5:30 p.m. Monday, March 28, at Duncan Hall, 619 Ferry St. in Lafayette. House District 41 will be first, with the second hour going to Senate District 23.
Questions will come from WBAA reporter Emilie Syberg, WLFI anchor Jeff Smith and me.
Thanks to the Presidential Lecture Series for sponsoring today’s edition. Despite setbacks, Purdue alumna Julie Wainwright persisted to create the luxury resale giant The RealReal. Join the conversation alongside Purdue President Mitch Daniels in person or online at 6 p.m. Tuesday, March 29.
Thanks for signing up and making the reporting project work. Not a subscriber, but thinking about it? Now’s the time: Through the end of March, monthly and annual subscriptions are 10% off. I’ll do my best to make it worthwhile.