Memories of mr. myers
From Laurence Meads '68:
We will never see another man like Twiggs Myers. Always a gentleman, soft spoken and definitely one of the kindest men I ever knew. When I came to Berkshire and was having difficulty with the transition being away from home, Twiggs was so kind and understanding. Loved his smile. What a legacy he has established at Berkshire.
From John Olinski '74:
What an incredible guy! Our families have been intertwined for more than 50 years. My Life Mentor, Coach, Teacher, Role Model all wrapped into one person.
It's been a pleasure to share this world with you! Twiggs you made it a better place. Well Done.
From Robin MacAusland '76:
Twiggs always had a smile, a twinkle in his eye, and took the time to say hello. I will miss him.
From Robert Louis Stevenson, III '73:
Not having taken one of his classes is one of my biggest regrets. The day I graduated Twiggs and my father introduced themselves, and as it turned out, they had many childhood friends in common. I remember briefly chatting with Twiggs after a poetry reading. He was discussing the Kennedy years, and I said that they were a time of tremendous optimism unlike any other that I've experienced. (This is still true.) He replied that "optimism" was a good word for that era, and his comment was a signal phrase during my Berkshire years. In his letters, Keats talks about "living the contributive life." Twiggs Myers exemplified it.
From David Loudon '84:
Had several opportunities to speak with Mr Myers at the Alumni Reunion last weekend. His manner, wit, and wisdom were quintessential Twiggs.
From Norman Rioux, past faculty, '54-'58:
Twiggs arrived at Berkshire a year before I did, and while we were never close friends during my four teaching years there I always admired his love of history and particularly some of its arcane secrets. At one point in time we served on the same "Grouping Committee" (I think that was its name), and Twiggs was surely much the better judge, jury, and hangman than was I during those proceedings.
I remember when Twiggs and I were invited by Anne Allen Buck one afternoon to what she called a "high tea" at her home. Both of us sat enthralled as she recounted the early Berkshire School days, and most particularly the awful day of the fire which destroyed the principal building. She averred that the story of using the burning coals to warm up food that evening was not a myth, and settled that matter (for me, at least) once and for all.
Very few individuals have the privilege to be associated with one independent school for over 60 years, and Twiggs deserves every accolade and recognition which came his way during those decades. An era has ended, and insofar as I know there is no longer anyone at Berkshire who knew either the founder or the founder's wife, but Twiggs did. What a glorious circle of life to have influenced and taught hundreds of students not only history, but citizenship, dedication, and respect for an institution like Berkshire. His memory will live on for years and years to come.
From MacKinnon Simpson '60:
It is with great sadness that I read of the loss of Twiggs Myers. While I was rarely happy during my two years at Berkshire, having Twiggs in class was a high point, as we shared a love of U.S. History. He was a SUPERB teacher. Godspeed, Mr. Myers.
From Robert (Robin) McGraw '70:
Twiggs was the quintessential schoolmaster. His life under the Mountain had a profound affect on all who came in contact with him, student, teacher, parent, alike. I was fortunate to know him first as a student then a colleague/mentor and, for the past 20 years, as a friend. No words can truly capture all that Twiggs gave to Berkshire School. He was the link between the past and the present. He was our institutional memory. He stands alone in his commitment to telling our story. I have so many fond memories of Twiggs. Its hard to believe that I will not see him today.
From Jennifer Gaudron '94:
Twiggs.. what a great man and icon at Berkshire school. I'll remember him from the days of Cross Country running. He will be missed but never forgotten.
From Lionel Shaw '85:
I can still hear Twiggs yelling, "Use your speed, Lionel!" as I raced up the final hill to the finish of Berkshire's Cross Country course. I can also hear him asking, "Did you give thanks, Lionel?" To which I would ask, "Thanks? Thanks, for what?" "For your God Given talent, for gosh sakes!" At which point I would promptly jaunt off into the woods, as was my ritual, and kneel beneath a tall tree to say a prayer of thanks for God's hand in helping me win.
Twiggs was an inspiration to us all, and has been a father figure to me since arriving at Berkshire in 1982. Academically, I was struggling at the time, and my personal life wasn't altogether in order either, so for me, Twiggs came along at just the right moment. I am eternally grateful to Twiggs for showing me so much validation and meaning that transferred into happiness and accomplishment at Berkshire and beyond. Twiggs, I love you for you and all you have given those you've touched with your intellect and kind heart. You will forever be etched in my memory as the one who imbued me, and countless others, with "physical courage and mental toughness," when I really needed it most. God bless you, Twiggs, and rest in peace my amazing and wonderful friend.
From Zoe Mulholland '90:
This is one of those inevitable days you just don't see coming and are never quite ready for. Twiggs was an exemplary teacher both in the classroom and out. I had him for American History in 1989 and I always looked forward to his class. He was just one of those larger than life characters encased in a gentle package who always had a kind word outside of the classroom. He made learning fun! The Berkshire community has lost a titan.
From Chris Jennings '84:
Thank you for sharing this sad news with alumni. I am so glad I came to reunion ten days ago and had a chance to say hello to Mr. Myers. He was my US History teacher, my track coach, my cross country running coach, for which my name is proudly engraved on his trophy, and, most importantly, he was my friend. I gravitated to this man the moment I met him and really loved him like a father. A great man that had a positive influence on so many students. I will never forget what he taught me in school and in life.
I will keep Mr. Myers and the Berkshire community in my thoughts and prayers. "Jog; don't walk."
From Dee Larimore '79:
I didn't know Mr. Myers well (certainly not well enough to call him Twiggs), but I remember, quite sheepishly, his green station wagon (with the "Chicken Little was right" bumper sticker) creeping slowly up behind me on my first day of cross country practice--I had slowed to a walk (and it was probably almost dark). He rolled the window down and gruffly said, "Run, don't walk." I jogged the rest of the way back to campus, and I'm pretty sure it was the last time he caught me walking.
From Walt Henrion '57:
Too many memories to even begin to enumerate. The Class of 1957 will dearly miss Twiggs, and we are so pleased that we have endowed two (2) annual faculty awards to honor Twiggs that will keep his memory alive for as long as Berkshire School is in existence.
From Ed Hunt '61:
When I was a young, very green new faculty member, Twiggs was very much available to give me friendly advice, even when I had made a huge mistake. There were many. I remember meeting with him after he had observed one of my classes in his role of department chairman. He gently gave positive ideas of how I could improve my presentations. Upon sharing this experience with other faculty members, most wished that he would visit their classes, so they could benefit the way I had.
In the last year of my tenure, Twiggs became a confidante as I worked on compiling the history of the School. Once again gentle suggestions on how the text could be improved, as well as what was fitting to put in and what didn't need to be included. He was a great colleague and a wonderful mentor. Whatever success I may have had as an educator was due in large part to him as a role model.
From Bill Clough, Associate Head of School 2004-13:
Like so many, I loved Twiggs. My entire family did. I will never forget the many meals I shared with him in the dining hall, each one a profound professional and personal development experience. He had a way of making me feel grounded, hopeful and proud. When I think of Berkshire, I think of Twiggs: his pond, his animals and his honest simplicity. For a southerner and a Phillies fan, he was a true Yankee.
From Crick Hatch '59:
I will remember Twiggs not just as a history master but as an avid naturalist. It was always a learning experience to spend an afternoon with him, clearing trails on the mountain. Performing all the activities relative to making maple syrup bring memories of Twiggs and Mr. Chase, "The Bear."
From Don Buck '66:
I was lucky enough to get to know Twiggs as an adult after knowing him as a student for three out of my four years (1962-66). In the 1990s, we chatted at reunions; then when I began coming back to Berkshire for Prize Night every May, we would usually talk in our front-row seats as the crowd gathered in the "spaceship," as he called the new gym when it was lit up for the night. He and Bill Gulotta would point out certain kids, and their achievements, and the colleges they would be going to.
It was just a few weeks ago that I found out about the Civil War general in Twiggs's family, and if I'm not mistaken there was a naval man later in that century. Twiggs was so interested in telling me this, and I was so interested in hearing it, that we were the last two people to leave the spaceship that night. I wrote a friend afterwards, "As usual I had a nice visit with Twiggs. Did you know that he had heart surgery in February? Good grief. Anyway, he came through it well enough, I guess, because tonight he went to a pre-ceremony dinner, came to the ceremony on his own, walked up and down the stairs onto the platform, and headed off home under his own steam." What could be more true of Twiggs? "Under his own steam."
From Sandy Creighton '59:
Elizabeth and I are indeed saddened by this news of Twiggs’ passing from us. We had such a great time and a warm visit with him during my 55th reunion just a few Fridays ago.
First, the school had asked us to pick him up at his cozy alpine cottage on Berkshire School Road to take him to our Class Reunion Friday cocktail gathering, traditionally held at Ann Barrett's [widow of class mate Dave] home on Bow Wow Road. As he was hard of hearing, and despite his dog’s incessant barking, I was obliged to enter his home to let him know we were there.
And, just as it was meant to be, he was just emerging from the shower. As ever, trim as a fine fiddle and sporting a towel around his waist, he greeted me with characteristic élan.
Later on Bow Wow road we laughed together about all this and shared other more distant memories that we have prized retelling every 5 years. And you know, he never has been the one to forget the best of stories ever or to remind us about the naughtiness we students had tried to get away with “way back when”.
He did share his concern about falling again because he was wearing bruises from a most recent fall the week before. Since I have also suffered several nasty falls in recent years, we spent some time discussing ways break a fall and activities to keep our bodies upright, including special exercises and Tai Chi.
I saw Twiggs again many times during the rest of the reunion weekend. Looking back, I will hold dear to memory watching him being, as always, rejuvenated by all those returning alumni who were reconnecting with him from all his years at Berkshire School.
I now envision him with all those great Berkshire Masters of yore whose memory I continue to revere for the gifts they gave me and inspired me be to be the person I am today. And, I shall be always proud to say that I knew C. Twiggs Meyers and he knew me. I am indeed honored to have known such a scholar, a teacher, and a very gentle man.
From Rick Gibson '66:
Fifty years ago, there were (more or less) affectionate names for the masters who were addressed only as "sir." There was a bear, a bird, a rat, a rosemary, a speedo, and a toad, but Mr. Myers was simply Twiggs.
I'm sure it's best that Twiggs Myers out-lived Allen House because it would have collapsed immediately had it been the other way.
From Matt Tice '81:
He was great man and teacher, both in and outside of the classroom. In history, he somehow made it seem more real, perhaps because he was named after a general. That, and his tweed jackets.
In track and cross country, you tried your best because you didn't want to disappoint him, despite the fact that he was steady as a rock and never acted disappointed. He'd park the green car down near the stream near the track and stand there with the windbreaker, Stetson and a stopwatch.
Speaking of "jog, don't walk" (thanks for that reminder Chris Jennings '84), when we would run fartlek workouts on a hill, he would somehow know you when you were walking even when he couldn't see you. That's when the normally soft-spoken voice would cut through the woods or across the field, and you'd hear his famous "jog, don't walk." And you did jog.
Sometimes, he let a few of us ride with him to meets in the green station wagon. It was then that his relaxed wit and humor was at its best. He told me that "women weaken da legs" in his best Mickey from the Rocky movies impression. He also told a few of us the "ooh ooh bird" joke, which was all the more funny coming from him. He was classic in every way. I feel blessed our paths crossed.
From Rob Hessler '68:
Twiggs Myers was a class act in all respects. As a track coach, he taught me perseverence and the importance of working hard and setting goals. As a teacher, he taught me the importance of focusing on furthering my education which would, in turn, give me more options as an adult. As a male role model, he taught me how to be respectful, honest, candid, and caring. Twiggs embodies the virtues of a Berkshire education, and he has had a profound impact on the Berkshire community.
From Mo Cassara '92:
I always called Twiggs Myers, "Coach".
I ran for him for three years, but it was much more than that. I still remember his talks to the team, his jokes, and his countless efforts to teach.
We traveled in his car to away races. Those drives are my favorite memories. I could just sit and listen to countless bits of information from this one-of-a-kind legend.
Rest easy, coach. You taught us all.
From Peter Jennings '68:
Memories we took away from Berkshire were many. Long lasting friendships, a unique education, and being away from home for the first time all molded us differently.
Having children of our own, now grown, we begin to relate to what it takes to understand the mind of teenager; It takes a special person. Many teachers possess this gift, and some are extraordinary. We remember their advice and wisdom throughout our lives.
Twiggs Myers had this gift, and he was echelons above extraordinary. His personality, candor, and understanding of what we were going through (even though we had no clue ourselves ), as we passed into adulthood were at times unnerving. But that's it. Twiggs knew; and when he spoke to you, you were reassured that despite all your fears, everything would turn out as it should. If you excelled, he knew why. If you failed, he knew why. And when you screwed up, he knew why. But it wasn't the "knowing" that we remember so fondly, it was the way he transferred that knowing into advice that made sense, when at times nothing did.
We will all miss you Twiggs. You transcended generations of youngsters who will forever heed your advice, and pay it forward. Thank you. Signed, A "Sophomore"
From Serge McKhann '83:
Mr. Myers was a second (and in some cases first) father to many of us. Some memories include the honor of being able to ride in his car (instead of on the bus) after top finishes for the CC team, his sense of humor, and the sincere interest he took in all of us, as athletes, students, and human beings. I attribute my love of running to this day to Twiggs and I think of him and still adhere to his words of wisdom every time I toe the line at a race.
From Michael Robertson '90:
Mr. Myers was the best, most knowledgeable, wisdom-filled professor that I have ever met. His lectures in class while I was a student at Berkshire were quite poignant. My fondest memories of Mr. Myers centered around his kindness and willingness to listen to each and everyone of his students. He will be missed.
From Bob Witkowski '66:
As a history master in my years at Berkshire, 1963-66, Twiggs was a formidable presence and influence. He was both approachable and a bit magisterial. Of course in later years, as I got to know him, he was much more of the former and less of the latter. And the last time I spent time with him, in February of 2012, he was a joy. As my running coach in Track, he taught me far more than merely techniques. Maybe these memories are jaded by time and age, but Twiggs's words, humor and caring have left me a far better man than I would have been without him in my life. I'll miss him, but won't forget him.