Harding Mourns The Passing Of Ganus

Clifton Ganus, Jr.

“He is home.” With those words, Charles Ganus informed university officials that his father, Dr. Clifton L. Ganus, Jr., passed away last night surrounded by a host of family at 7:45 p.m. While the entire Harding family feels a tremendous sense of loss at this news, the university also gives thanks for the peace and rest that our beloved Dr. Ganus now knows. 
It’s impossible to think of Harding University without Dr. Ganus in the picture. That is why it is so difficult for us imagine our future without his continuing to meet us on the sidewalk or to greet us in chapel every day. Since the time he arrived as a freshman in 1939, Dr. Ganus has been a living connection to almost all of Harding’s 95-year history. His trademark smile and his joyous spirit were infectious. He was the president of Harding when I was a student here back in the 1970s. It was always comforting to the students when he was in chapel. We lived in awe of his faith, his wisdom, his love for us and his devotion to Harding. I distinctly remember the feeling that if Dr. Ganus was present, everything was going to be ok. Harding University has lost an incredible leader and a beloved icon, and we already miss him. Dr. Ganus would often tell us that J. N. Armstrong, Harding’s first president, “gave the school its soul.” He would then say that Dr. George S. Benson, Harding’s second president, “put Harding on a solid financial foundation.” Today, we can clearly see that Dr. Ganus, Harding’s third president, took a promising Christian college in Searcy, Arkansas, and through his Christ-like strength, faithfulness, tenderness and love transformed it into the amazing university that we cherish so deeply.       MORE

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