In Memory

Robert Pedigo



 
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08/06/21 12:15 PM #1    

Don Kehn Jr.

 

Mr. Pedigo ("as such") kept in contact with several of his former students for a number of years afterwards.  He shared an apt. with another teacher from BHS I believe--an older woman whose name escapes me--and was notably sociable, it seemed to me at the time.  Fond memories of visiting him there w/my good BHS'72 pal Hubert Parker & others.  

  I think Bob died of a heart attack--he'd had a bad ticker for years--in the mid-to-late 70s?

 


08/07/21 03:39 PM #2    

Gerrod George

The rumors alone about Mr. Pedigo belong in a book, especially considering that he appeared to be the source of most of them.  Was he really a Satanist? Was Elizabeth I really a man? Did he really lose his leg in a motorcycle accident in Spain? I later got to know Mildred Lyles and attempted to get her to talk about him. Her lips, however, were sealed.  As much as I'd have liked have known him better, I think the silence served his legend well. He did grade from "A+" (I never saw anyone get one, but I did once get an "A-, and still have the paper to prove it.) to "F-" (and I saw two of those).  His teaching style was magnificent. "I will lecture to you, and you will take notes.  You will use those notes to write your essays. You know nothing, and I don't care what your opinion is." I recall one rather frightening moment of truth, however, in the middle of one of his lectures, in which he came very close to revealing himself. "We" were studying Shelley's "Ode to the West Wind," which he read aloud. When he came to the words, "...I fall upon the thorns of life! I bleed!," he looked up at us, seeminly shaking with rage, and said, with a voice equal parts venom and contempt, "You may think you know what that means, but I assure you that you have no idea!" I don't know that it was really true that none of us understood those lines; it was, however, an extraordinarily honest moment from him. I've always respected that. He also taught me to write, for which I am grateful.

He passed away from his second heart attack, which I think was while I was still an undergraduate.   There is a story about his first heart attack, however, that, although I ddin't hear it first hand, it did come from his lips. When the symptoms began, he drove himself to the hospital, parked outside the emergency room, walked in and said calmly to the nurse, "My name is Robert Pedigo, and I am having a heart attack."

 


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