Today's Update: Celebrate Willie on his birthday

August 6, 2021

Dear Student Life Team, It’s hard to imagine the start of a new academic year without Willie Young, Sr. Join us in keeping his memory, and more importantly, his legacy, alive at The Ohio State University.   

This is a very special weekend. Many of you know how much I love birthdays, and Willie would be celebrating his 72nd birthday this weekend (8/8). We all know Willie remembered everyone’s birthday, which he often guessed by how you held a pencil.  

In February of this year the university Board of Trustees unanimously approved the naming of the Willie J. Young, Sr. Off-Campus and Commuter Student Engagement department in the Office of Student Life. In addition, we have created a fund in Willie’s honor, the Willie J. Young Fund for Off-Campus and Commuter Student Services. This fund will support the work of the department where Willie made such a lasting impact through his passionate dedication, as well as a special bench that will be unveiled in a ceremony in the off-campus area in his honor that will symbolize his wonderful capacity to make connections with any and all people.   

To support Willie’s legacy please consider a donation to Willie’s fund. Here are some suggested levels of giving that we think Willie would enjoy:    

  • $23.25: W is the 23rd letter, and Y is the 25th (Think Willie Trivia) 
  • $56: Willie’s dot number in his email (we all have those special emails from him)  
  • $88: Willie’s birthday was on 8/8 and one of his favorite trivia questions was the number of counties in Ohio which is 88, too!  
  • $450: Miles that Willie drove per week from his home in Springfield to the Ohio Union which was approximately 90 miles round trip daily and 23,400 per year. (Many late nights were had on the road.)  
  • $2,019: Last year that Willie attended the bowl game where he provided so much joy to all the tour participants over the years with his trivia and Buckeye-spirited personalized clothing!  
  • $3,000: Annual amount of hot dogs Willie passed out at senior crawl each spring. He worked hard raising money to make that possible.  

You undoubtedly have your own special connection with Willie, so consider a donation amount that represents a memory between you.  

Help us celebrate Willie’s life and legacy by clicking on the Buckeye Funder page: buckeyefunder.osu.edu/project/26711 

I hope you can participate in celebrating our good friend.  

Melissa