It is with great sadness that we announce the death of Dr. Jeffrey Del Col, Retired Professor of Literature and Writing from Alderson Broaddus University, at the age of 68. Dr. Del Col was a member of the faculty at AB for 37 years and recently retired on May 20, 2015.
Dr. Del Col was known and admired for his erudition and for his ability to both challenge and encourage his students. He was an exceptional teacher, and the impact he had on Alderson Broaddus will always be remembered by a countless number of students, faculty, staff, and alumni.
He graduated with high honors with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science in 1969 and Master of Arts in English in 1972, both from West Virginia University. He continued his education at West Virginia University and earned his Doctorate of Education in Literature and Technology in 1978, the same year in which he began teaching at Alderson Broaddus.
During his extensive and distinguished career at AB, he taught several courses in English, Literature, Writing, Journalism and Humanities. He helped found the University’s literary magazine InFlux and was its advisor from 1991 until his retirement. He also co-created the Alderson Broaddus Honors Program.
Before coming to AB, he taught at Glenville State College and West Virginia University, where he originated, developed, and taught WVU’s first course on technology and writing. He was also a member of the West Virginia University Foundation Fellow, the national political science honorary Pi Sigma Alpha, and Phi Beta Kappa, which is the nation’s oldest and most prestigious academic honorary.
In addition to nurturing the writing skills of his students, he was himself a writer. He had had a number of his poems and other writings published; at the time of his death, he was preparing a collection of his poetry for possible publication.
Dr. Jeff Del Col was an avid flower gardener, raising an impressive array of cacti, orchids, roses, and other flowering plants; and a dedicated birdwatcher with an encyclopedic knowledge of the birds of West Virginia.
He is survived by his wife of 45 years, Carol (Henry) Del Col, who also recently retired from an impressive career at Alderson Broaddus and lives at their home in Philippi; his mother Dorothy (Kaczorowski) Del Col, who survives in Tavares, Florida; his daughter, Laura Del Col Brown, and husband, Chris Brown, of Harrow, England; his son, Stephen Jeffrey Del Col, of Vermont; his sister Deborah Del Col Lawson and husband, Tom Lawson, of Morgantown, W.Va.; and his sister Cynthia Del Col Hibler and husband, Frank Hibler, of Apopka, Florida.
A memorial service for Dr. Jeffrey Del Col will be held at 11:00 a.m. on Tuesday, April 5, at Crim Memorial United Methodist Church in Philippi, W.Va. We hope that some of his many friends and former students and colleagues will join his family in celebrating the life and work of this remarkable man. A luncheon will follow in the Crim Fellowship Hall for all who wish to attend.
As mentioned above, Dr. Del Col advised InFlux for over 24 years. The 2016 edition of the literary magazine is currently accepting submissions, and the editors have decided to dedicate this year’s magazine to Dr. Del Col.
“He molded us all into the bright, creative minds that we are,” says student editor Emily Porter. “He pushed us to create, to edit, and to thrive in our writing.”
Any current or former student, colleague, friend or employee who wishes to submit a piece in his honor may do so by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org by April 1.
Alderson Broaddus University wishes to extend his entire family and friends our deepest sympathy. We pray that in this time of loss, you feel God’s love, and find comfort in the presence of our Lord.