Westmont Magazine Retired but Still Remembered
Two events led Carol Curlette Sie ’74 to reflect on her Westmont years: looking back on her life after completing treatment for breast cancer and enrolling her daughter Alissa at Westmont. “I did a lot of thinking about the people who helped me while I was a student,” she says. One person, Professor Arthur Lynip, stood out in her mind. “I decided I wanted my kids to meet him and to let him know how special he is to me,” she says. So the entire Sie family went to visit the emeritus professor in North Carolina, where he moved to be closer to his son.
“I really didn’t know what to expect,” reports Carol. “It had been quite a while since I had seen him.” Her uncertainty dissipated when they turned down his street and saw porch lights flashing like an airport landing. “How like him,” she says. “I couldn’t wait to get out of the car.”
When they were seated around the dining room table, Lynip turned his attention to Carol’s daughters and asked the leading question, “I don’t suppose you girls have ever read about Narnia?” They had seen the celebrated piece of furniture once on a grade-school field trip, and Lynip proceeded to give them the whole story.
Carol treasures Lynip because he always tried to make a connection with his students. With probing eyes, he asked his favorite question, “What are you thinking?” — and he would do whatever necessary to get a response. “His tactics included changing character and boyishly balancing an object on the tip of his finger, tapping your foot with his to get your attention or bringing an element of humor to the discussion,” she recalls. “He believed that you had a view worth hearing.”
Lynip and his wife were gracious hosts, and a meal at their home was festive. Food was secondary to the company and the conversation. “The eternal dimension always emerged from the common place in his perspective,” Carol says. “As a friend and teacher, he helped me to grow up.”
Carol encourages other alums to get in touch with him as well. “Those who remember and appreciate the glint in his eye, his ‘Lynipian’ world view, and his contribution to the people they have become may wish to congratulate Dr. Lynip on his 90th birthday, which took place Oct. 14. His address is: Dr. Arthur Lynip, 7913 Fawn Lane, Waxhaw, NC 28173.”