|ALUMNI & FRIENDS >>||Stories From The Boys|
Stories From The Boys
They didn't know it at the time, but for those men who were members of the UNI Varsity Men's Glee Club from 1974 to 2004, their lives have been changed forever because they had been part of something great. And greatness, no matter how brief, stays with a man.
UNI lost a great teacher, an inspiring director and a warm-hearted friend in Bob Byrnes. Bob was the director of the Glee Club from 1974 to 2004, and he was extraordinary.
Under Bob's guidance, generations of Glee Clubbers shared in the Glee Club experience, as he helped to enrich the lives of many UNI students in the brotherhood of song.
With the sudden passing of Bob on May 28, 2004, many alumni, friends and students wanted to share their memories and stories about Bob.
Alumnus Matt Patterson set up a message board to allow people to do just that. So, for exactly one year from the date of Bob's death, alumni & friends were invited to share their thoughts about the now-legendary man who directed the UNI Varsity Men's Glee Club for 30 years.
Some of the stories are funny, some profound. All are heartfelt. They help to illustrate the devotion to this organization - the passion for excellence, the importance of tradition - and hint at what the Glee Club is all about. It's much more than music.
There are life lessons to be learned from these tributes.
It has been said that Bob Byrnes cared more about the Glee Club than he cared about himself. Yet another reason why Bob became a legend. The UNI Varsity Men's Glee Club is his legacy.
Bob will be remembered for the lives he touched, the music that he gave us, and his final lesson: "Whatever you do in your life, you have to work damn hard to really make it special." He did, and it was special indeed.
Now, and forever - Brothers, Sing On!
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By the way, the next time you're in Cedar Falls, stop by "The Other Place" (The O.P.) on the Hill. There, you will find a nicely framed print of the illustration above, in memory of Bob. It can be seen hanging in a place of honor in the back room, where Seminar-goers have met for years, and where the Glee Club still meets on occasion for Seminar.
(We highly recommend the Weds night special, a 16" sausage and mushroom. It's still the best pizza in Cedar Falls!)