Monday, October 23, 2006

Thank you, Dr. Szegedy

Today marks the 50th anniversary of the Hungarian Revolution of 1956. I never knew much about it, so I looked it up.

My personal touchstone with the revolution was my first-year Chemistry teacher in high school. His name was Dr. Laszlo Szegedy. He was already in his 50's at the time. (interesting, to me at least, is the fact that at my high school, at the time I attended from 1969-1973, there were only two Ph.D.s teaching. One was a refugee from Hungary, the other a refugee from Cuba.)

I had trouble in chemistry when I got to college. There was only one Chem. class in my high school, so it wasn't an "honors" class--we had our share of goof-offs. Whenever the class-clown types didn't want to work, (or maybe they just wanted to mock the prof) one of them would raise his hand and ask Dr. Szegedy about his experience in escaping from Hungary. He would lay down his pointer, and tell us of his experiences. ( this happened often, thus my sketchy accumulation of chemistry knowledge.)I'm afraid I didn't appreciate his experience like I probably would now. I have no concept of how it was to live under Communism, and to feel that it was worth any risk for the chance at freedom. What awesome, awesome courage and faith it had to have taken.

So, maybe I didn't appreciate Dr. Szegedy (and Dr. Gladys Ruiz--Algebra I, from Cuba) enough. Or, not much at all. So I will honor him (and her) now. God's blessings to you both, if you are still alive, and to your memories, if you are not.

1 comment :

Copper's Wife said...

Oh, my goodness!!! I know exactly what you mean about your Ph D high school teachers and NOT appreciating them and their life experiences at the time. I had Dr. Nuban for anatomy and physiology. Dr. Nuban was a political refugee from Persia (Iran). I'd give anything, now, to hear his stories of persecution and flight. He was a good guy, really. He let a friend and I dissect a fetal pig for extra credit after we'd totally botched our class project.