A quote by Eloise Shepherd’s father, Colonel Powell Fraser ’41, on the War Memorial between Jacobs Hall and Harrington-Peachtree shows the dedication Fraser had for the College.
The quote reads, “The ‘P.C. Spirit’ is that faith which enables us to out-think, out-pray and, if need be, out-die the enemy.”
It’s this faith that sustained Fraser in World War II while in command of Company E 127 Infantry in Buna, New Guinea. There, Fraser spent more than 600 days under fire, more than any other officer who served in WWll.
Fraser, who first arrived at PC with a football scholarship and only 25 cents in his pocket, kept in touch with the College through the Bee Mail letters while he fought in the war. Also during that time, Fraser sent a war bond to start a fund to build a student center at PC. The center was built in the late-’50s.
When the war ended, Fraser returned to PC to serve as the professor of military science in the ROTC program. He served from 1946 to 1950.
Fraser retired after serving in the Army for 23 years. Not willing to stay away from the College, “Pop,” as many called him, returned to serve as the director of development in the mid-’60s.
Hearing stories about PC and visiting campus was part of Shepherd’s everyday life.
“I grew up listening to dinner table discussions on the critical value of a small, church-related liberal arts college and the challenges it has faced,” she said.
Shepherd says she used the PC campus as her backyard when she was a student at Clinton High School. Also during that time, she was close to another historical figure in PC’s history: Susan Jacobs, the granddaughter of founder William Plumer Jacobs and daughter of William Plumer Jacobs III, who tutored her in algebra.
Shepherd says she made her own PC history too.
“To challenge my father’s combat record,” she said, “I believe I have spent more hours eating Sunday lunches after church in the Greenville Dining Hall than any person ever in Clinton.”
Because of her love for PC, Shepherd considered it an honor to serve on the College’s Board of Trustees from 2010 to 2015.
“On the board, I witnessed firsthand the ceaseless work and constant prayers of PC alumni, trustees and staff to give to today’s young people what PC gave to my father,” Shepherd said.
Shepherd, along with her husband, Steve, served on PC’s Board of Visitors in addition to a number of other school and civic organizations.
Eloise and Steve Shepherd are new members of the William Plumer Jacobs Society because of the generosity they have shown the College over the years. They’ve given to the PC Fund at the Neville Pillar level and contributed to the Neville Renewed Campaign.
“My family will always support PC,” Shepherd said. “We hope that its value will be as great for the students today as it was for my dad, the only ‘real kind of education.’”
Eloise and Steve Shepherd are two of the newest inductees into the William Plumer Jacobs Society. To learn about the other inductees, please visit the WPJ Society page.