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Student heroics recognized

student heroes

Glenn Walker and Tiffany Bond honored at Cincinnati City Hall. Photo/Colleen Kelley

Life can change in just a moment.

For NCAA Basketball Player of the Year Kenyon Martin, it came as his ankle snapped during the first few minutes of post-season play. For two UC students unaccustomed to such limelight, it came a few days later as they rounded a street corner and saw a man punching a child in the face -- a gripping life-and-death situation in which they had nothing more to fight with than their bare hands.

All three could have shrugged their shoulders and said, "There was nothing I could do." And no one would have argued.

But all three immediately decided they would do something -- anything -- to make a difference.

The latter two called 911 and fought the man off with a broom stick, rocks and a garbage can until four police officers arrived and were able to restrain the attacker. Kenyon's efforts were less physical though just as strenuous, playing a "volunteer assistant coach," as he put it, from the bench.

Both efforts epitomized Mitchel Livingston's Just Community philosophy and moved the UC vice president of student affairs and human resources to respond with the following column:

Profiles of courage

by Mitchel Livingston,
UC vice president of student affairs and human resources

When it comes to celebrating the character development of our students, the University of Cincinnati has much to crow about this spring.

For most of this 1999-2000 basketball season, UC and the surrounding communities marveled at the performance of the UC basketball team and development of Kenyon Martin, now two-time celebrated player of the year. Waving his arms and exhorting UC fans in a losing cause at the Conference USA Tournament, Kenyon showed real character as he found a way to help his team while he sat on the bench with a broken leg. Kenyon continued to contribute to his team by leaving no doubts in the minds of UC fans that we still have the No. 1 team in the country.

Just when my heart was full with pride over Kenyon's example on and off the court, I was again captured by the example of two UC students who, like Kenyon, chose not to sit on the sideline when their help was desperately needed.

Kenyon Martin

Kenyon Martin supporting his team at the NCAA Tourney in 2000. Photo/Lisa Ventre

On March 13, Glenn Walker and Tiffany Bond instinctively came to the assistance of a 13-year-old boy who was being assaulted by a stranger. These courageous UC students put their lives in danger in order to protect an innocent young boy.

During the assault, people were everywhere, but no one did anything to help. Fortunately, these two UC students demonstrated their good character by getting involved and making a difference.

Given the profiles of courage exhibited by Kenyon, Glenn and Tiffany, we are a better university family and a more caring "just community."