MEDIA:
PRESS and PRINT THROUGH THE YEARS
www.hillmanweb.com/book/media

MEDIA INTRO
INTRO
ONE
TWO
THREE
FOUR
FIVE
SIX
SEVEN
EIGHT
NINE
TEN
ELEVEN
TWELVE
THIRTEEN
FOURTEEN
FIFTEEN
SIXTEEN
SEVENTEEN
EIGHTEEN
NINETEEN
TWENTY
TWENTY-ONE

PART 21
www.hillmanweb.com/book/media/21.html



 

FOREVER BLUE AND GOLD
Story by Perry Bergson
Success takes many forms, and Brandon University has been a reliable starting point for its development Fifty years after they attended Brandon College as it transitioned into Brandon University, Bill Hillman, Ron Wescott and Bill and Lana Myers are fine examples of the different ways that lives can diverge from a single starting point.

Hillman became an outstanding educator with a long musical career as a recording artist. Wescott is 48 years into a career in the education publishing industry, while his sporting sideline has earned him a spot in the Manitoba Curling Hall of Fame and on Brandon University's Dick and Verda McDonald Sports Wall of Fame. And as Bill Myers established a long career as a surgeon Lana Myers taught, raised four children and made a significant contribution to the community with her volunteer work. 

All of them point to their time at Brandon University as a meaningful start to their later success.

"It's a huge part of our lives and a huge part of the community," Bill Myers said. "I don't think people, generally speaking realize what a gem it is to have here. Not only the opportunity of going to university in your hometown or home area, it's relatively small so you're not lost." 

Wescott agrees. "I think it was a great stepping stone into business," Wescott said. "You learn a little bit of confidence, you learn how to cope and be an independent learner. In a way it helped shape my career in publishing and it's been a great career"

Hillman was the first on campus, leaving Strathclair in 1961. 

"It was close to home," Hillman said. "I had never really been away from home and it seemed like a logical progression."

He took science courses, finding his passion in geography under his mentor, John Langton Tyman, who established the department in 1962. Hillman also played football with the Caps, who played at the former Kinsmen Stadium.

"I was a football nut but eventually something had to give," Hillman said. "I couldn't do football as well as carry on with my hectic music schedule."

Hillman played in four bands, including one with classmate Barry Forman. They earned a daily gig performing during CKX-TV's noon show with future BU lecturer Larry Clark on drums.

We were doing noon shows every day and it clashed with the geography class with John Tyman, Hillman said. "He gave me his notes and let me skip all the classes."

Hillman needed money so he returned to Strathclair without a degree to teach high school, staying three years there on permit. 

After he married Sue-On, his wife of 52 years, Hillman resumed his education, earning an elementary teaching degree. He carried on to earn Bachelor of Science and Bachelor of Education of degrees, as well as a Silver medal in Geography in 1971. 

He said he loved the educational dynamic at Brandon University. 

There were a lot of bull sessions," Hillman said. "Profs weren't afraid to speak out controversially . . . You could speak your mind and have different topics. It was a great experience."

Hillman returned to Strathclair and taught for 30 years, but continued his studies and received his master's from BU in 1991.

He joined the faculty in 2000, and after a decade there in which he battled cancer and CIDP, a nervous system disorder, Hillman retired at 65. He received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the BU Senate at Convocation in 2013.

The Hillmans have a couple of claims to fame. They co-owned and operated Soo's restaurant in Brandon until 2002 and the couple also released 12 albums, first as Western Union, and later under their names, touring across, Canada, USA and Europe. 

In one of their England recording sessions they were joined by Alan Clark, who later earned a place in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as a member of Dire Straits, and the Hillmans were Entertainers of the Year in Manitoba in 1980.

Sue-On is also a BU graduate, with a Bachelor of Arts and a B.Ed. and taught English for Academic Purposes at the University for 15 years. The couple have three children, China-Li, Robin and Ja-On, all of whom attended Brandon University before going on to successful careers. 

"The atmosphere is great and it's a nice, small compact university compared to a lot of them, which are really sprawling," said Hillman. 

They now travel the world, and Bill works on web sites, with more than 15,000 webpages online.


BOOK CONTENTS
PDF Version

1. Gig Notes: 1-10
PDF
2. Album Notes | Galleries
PDF
3. Guitar Tales
PDF
4. Prairie Saga
PDF
5. Roots | Influences
6. +1000 Photos in Collages
7. Media
8. 100 Songs

9. TRAVEL ADVENTURES

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