“SID … SID … SID”
How many times did you hear the audience chanting this when Dr. Williams spoke? I remember it when I attended my first DE as a Palmer student back in 1970 as a young, radical, long-haired hippie, part of 2,000 people watching and participating in an experience as this iconic figure was capturing the attention of thousands of Chiropractors. He challenged them to live a more Innately driven life and to live it with Lasting Purpose, a value that to this day is at the core of a Life University education … to give, do, love and serve out of a sense of abundance.
I saw him speak last at an all-school assembly on a day at which we honored him by unveiling a monument of him that sits next to D.D.’s and B.J.’s and then naming the Library building after him and his beloved wife, Nell. His body and mind were beginning to fail him, something that even the most charismatic of figures cannot avoid, but even then he would hit his dramatic notes in perfect timing and the crowd would shout back in perfect harmony, “SID … SID … SID,” out of both respect for a life well lived and out of a sense of what he had meant to them, individually.
His funeral in January was a family affair, as it should have been, but there were thousands who wanted to celebrate his life, especially his Chiropractic life, who could not attend on such short notice. And putting something of that scope together requires a huge amount of planning. So, on the afternoon of March 8 at Life University we honored and celebrated the life of Sidney E. Williams, D.C.
There were public, political and sports figures in attendance. Lifelong friends and colleagues like Drs. D.D. Humber and Gerry Clum shared their love for their friend and mentor, respectively. It was an emotional experience with thousands of people in attendance. In a special ceremony, we lit a flame that will burn for eternity behind the Bell Tower in the middle of campus. This permanent monument is so that future generations can understand the influence and importance of the man and his love for Life University, which for some is known as “The House That Sid Built.”
I’m sure that wherever Sid is right now that he is with a bunch of folks that we know so well by their first names … Reggie, Fred, Herbert, Joe, B.J. and D.D., Galen, Kitty and Mack, Lyle, John and a host of others. I’m sure when he showed up they all yelled out in unison, “SID … SID … SID.”