-by Michael Bacon, son of Dr. Cheryl Bacon, retiring chair of the Department of Journalism and Mass Communication
The word hero gets overused a lot in today’s world. On a given day, the title ‘hero’ might be given to an athlete, movie star, talk show host, or any one of a number of people that make a temporary splash in a particular line of work. In reality, there are few true heroes in today’s world. My mom, Dr. Cheryl Bacon, has always been my hero.
For all 28-plus years of my life, she has been there for me. For rides to countless practices, games, and road trips to see the Rangers, Mavericks, and Cowboys. She’s been there when I needed a shoulder to lean on, or if I needed a kick in the butt. (If you see her, ask about when she found out I was on Chapel probation as an undergrad.) She was there when I moved out, graduated, and got married. I’m not the only one she’s always been there for either.
For the last 39 years on the ACU campus, Dr. Bacon has also always been there for kids that weren’t biologically her own. Whether it was for advice, a meal, or a place to do laundry, mom always went above and beyond to make sure that her students had a home away from home. She has served on committees, mentored young faculty members, and done everything in her power to make ACU and the Department of Journalism and Mass Communication a better place.
Mom has worn a lot of hats at ACU over the years. At different points, she’s been a professor, assistant sports information director, Alumni Director, and adviser to both the Prickly Pear and Optimist. In 1998 she moved into her current role as chair of the JMC department. Over the last twenty years, she has seen her department receive national accreditation and numerous other national honors.
No pressure, Dr. Pybus, but you have some big shoes to fill!
In addition to her roles at ACU, Mom has worn a lot of other hats at home as well. She’s been mom, dad, caretaker to her parents, taxi driver, referee for arguments between my sister, Kate, and me, driveway rebounder, cook, maid, landlord to my college roommates, and most importantly, hero. A hero to me, my sister, and my grandparents, who have a front row seat with the Man upstairs.
Trying to find a way to honor Mom in retirement has been quite a challenge. There was a dinner last night at Perini’s for family and friends, and there’s a reception this afternoon. There will be tickets to see Elton John later this year. We could have dinners and receptions for 39 more years and it wouldn’t be enough.
Mom … you’re the best. Love you.