Richard and Sue Pell
It takes just a moment to get to know that what matters most to Rich and Susan Pell is family. On a cold day in March, Rich and Susan came to Shepherd University to watch a baseball game. Huddled with them against the blustering wind were their son, daughter-in-law, and grandchildren. This was not just an ordinary day; they had come to dedicate the stadium bleachers, a project for which they were the lead benefactors.
The remarkable thing about the Pell story is that they are not Shepherd alumni nor did they have a child currently on the team. In fact, their son was a standout athlete who graduated with the class of 1999. Despite the decade that had passed since their son's graduation, the Pells have not forgotten the impact Shepherd University had on their son and family.
Rich easily recalls the first time he and Susan met Coach Wayne Riser. They had visited several schools with their son, and Susan had a list of questions ready for the coach. Rich smiled as he recalled the patience with which the coach addressed each of their questions and quelled all of their concerns.
From that moment forward, the Pells' extended family included Shepherd University and the Rams baseball team. Rich grew to admire the coach for his resourcefulness. "He was often out there, making improvements to the stadium with his own hands," said Rich, "and this is what made us want to help." The opportunity arose when the Pells realized that improvements to the football stadium were fueled by contributions from alumni. They decided to step forward to fund improvements to the baseball stadium.
Shepherd baseball coach Wayne Riser (l.) joins Richard Pell, Jr. and Susan Pell and their son Rich III '99 and daughter-in-law Michelle, and grandchildren Richie IV and Sophie.