Family of alumni finds common ground on the Radford Campus

Kathy Grimes '75 and her four sons, all as different as could be, are full of pride for the one place they all have in common: Radford University.

When Grimes, of Ocean City, Maryland, graduated from RU with a degree in health and physical education she didn't know she'd be coming back to see all four of her sons graduate from the institution she loves.

"It may sound silly but Radford University is a part of my heart and soul each and every day," said Grimes, whose license plate reads "RU PRIDE."

During her days as a student, Grimes had a hand in myriad organizations such as the swim team, volleyball team, Sigma Sigma Sigma and other clubs. She also worked as an assistant swim teacher.

"I love the memories I have from that time in my life!" she said. "I loved running back to my room in the winter, with snow on the ground, from Peters Hall swimming pool barefoot and with wet hair. When I got to my room my hair was frozen."

The love for RU never abated and Grimes continued to serve the university as the first president of the RU Parents Council and as a representative at high school college fairs. The passion she shows the school was transferred to her sons - Christopher Flor '00, Scott Flor '02, Doug Grimes '10 and John Grimes '14 - all of whom grew up visiting the RU campus.

Christopher Flor chose Radford for its reputation in information systems and mathematics, he said. Now, living in Belton, Texas, Flor is the director of operations for CGI's US Onshore Delivery Center. Flor is married to RU alumna RaeAnn Graef '99.

Scott Flor graduated as business major. He currently resides in Raleigh, North Carolina and is the President of American Pool and Pearl Plaster, a company that performs maintenance, management and construction of swimming pools. Flor also married an RU alumna, Andrea Carbaugh '04.

The third son to join the Highlanders was Doug Grimes, a media studies major. Grimes is now a radio personality and host, known as "Coach," on The Rude Awakening Show on 98.1 WOCM in Ocean City, Maryland.

John Grimes is part of the May 2014 graduating class. John is a Highlander Scholar, a member of Phi Sigma Pi National Honor Fraternity and Alpha Phi Sigma Criminal Justice Honor Fraternity. He will work as an Ocean City police officer this summer and attend graduate school in the fall at either American University or George Washington University. Eventually, he hopes to join the FBI.

"I have loved coming into Radford with having family as alumni," Grimes said. "But I did not choose Radford for this purpose. I chose Radford for the beautiful campus and one of the most reputable criminal justice programs in Virginia. I have loved being a part of Radford for the past four years."

Like his mother and brothers before him, Grimes has crafted relationships with the students and professors he has met on campus.

"I have gotten very involved in so many different organizations and they have given me families away from home," he said. "I will miss it once I graduate!"

According to John's professors, his graduation is the culmination of four years of hard work and dedication to his school.

"He's going to make everybody proud," said Egan Kyle Green, associate professor of criminal justice. "He was an outstanding student. I know he'll be quite successful in whatever he wants do."

All five Highlander family members will return to campus to celebrate John's graduation at the 2014 Spring Commencement which takes place May 9-10. For more information, visit the Commencement website.

May 6, 2014