LeRoy Laycock couldn’t have been happier when he was asked to serve on the calling committee for this year’s Houston Alumni Organization’s Golden Reunion.
The opportunity gave him the chance to catch up with friends he hadn’t talked to in 50 years.
Laycock graduated from UH in 1953 with a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering. That degree took him into the supervisory control and data acquisition industry, where he remained until his retirement.
A former member of the Student Government Association, Laycock said he treasures the time he spent here at the university and cherishes the quality education UH has always provided him.
“The classes were a lot smaller then. The teachers took the time to really pay attention to each student,” he said. Only 10,000 students attended school along with Laycock.
John Hoff, who headed the civil engineering department, and Dave Williams, who taught in the technology department, are among the teachers Laycock relied upon for guidance. It is because of the hard work those teachers bestowed on their students that they succeeded.
Laycock, who was voted outstanding engineering student in 1953, said he’s proud of the leaps and bounds by which UH has grown. In fact, sometimes it’s difficult for him to believe how much UH has changed over the years.
“At one time, you could stand in the middle of the campus and see everything,” Laycock said. “Everything has changed tremendously.”
One thing is for certain. There are memories here at UH that time cannot erase. For Laycock, he experienced a “first” most people don’t even remember.
“This is the place where I tried my first pizza,” Laycock said. “The wife of a friend of mine here was Italian, and she made us one. It wasn’t like the pizza you get here. It was a lot better.”
Anxiously awaiting this year’s Golden Reunion, which is one of the many Homecoming activites planned, Laycock said he is hoping to see some of the friends he had while here at UH. Most of them, he said, spread out all over the country, and it was difficult to keep in touch with them.
He and his own family moved to Sealy for about 14 years before returning to Houston. His desire to be near his children and grandchildren prompted the move back to Houston.
“The people I called to inform them about the reunion remembered me as soon as I told them who I was. And, I remembered them. It was like no time had passed,” Laycock said. “It will be nice to see some of the good folks that where here back then."