Lafayette Football to Dedicate Season in Memory of Tom Norton `59

Go Leopards! Lafayette's helmets will feature 'TWN' decals to remember Tom Norton during the 2005 season.
Lafayette's helmets will feature 'TWN' decals to remember Tom Norton during the 2005 season.

Aug. 23, 2005

EASTON, Pa. ( - The Lafayette football team will dedicate the 2005 season in memory of Thomas W. Norton '59, head coach Frank Tavani announced Tuesday at Lafayette's annual football media day.

Norton, who was a member of the faculty for 37 years and a long-time supporter of Lafayette athletics, died June 24, 2005 at the age of 68.

"The Lafayette football program lost a dear friend when Tom Norton passed," said Tavani, who is in his 19th season as a member of the Lafayette coaching staff. "He was always there every Sunday with doughnuts for the staff, and encouraged everybody regardless of the prior day's outcome. He loved and cared for the program. In his final weeks, he called to request a copy of the 2004 Lafayette-Lehigh football game to relive the memories of the Patriot League championship."

"We are dedicating the season in memory of Tom, to thank him for his love and unwavering support of Lafayette football, and to promote the scholarship fund that has been established in his honor," Tavani explained.

The Thomas W. Norton '59 Scholarship Fund in the College endowment has been established to provide financial aid for students in need so that his legacy of care and concern for Lafayette students will endure.

Friends have described Norton as the embodiment of what the College aspires to - mind, body and spirit. He was a learned man and respected member of the faculty who appreciated the value of athletic competition. He enjoyed people and nurtured his relationships by walking the campus on a daily basis to visit folks where they lived and worked. Norton's frequent visits to Kirby Sports Center allowed him to encounter students and coaches and gain perspective on their experience.

Elizabeth Norton Frisch, the daughter of Tom Norton, her husband Gregory and their daughter Natalie received a helmet with the 'TWN' decal from the Lafayette football program.

As a professor, Norton inspired generations of students as he taught a wide variety of courses on American society with particular emphasis on social inequality, organizational analysis and social change.

Norton joined the faculty as instructor of sociology in 1967 and became an assistant professor in 1973 after earning his Ph.D. in sociology from the University of Pittsburgh. He received tenure as associate professor in 1974 and was later promoted to full professor. Upon his retirement in 2004 he was named professor emeritus.

Born April 3, 1937, Norton was a native of Altoona, Pa. He received a bachelor of arts degree from Lafayette and an M.B.A. in sociology from Pittsburgh in 1964.

Norton is survived by his wife of 37 years, Mary Ellen, his daughter Elizabeth Norton Frisch and her husband Gregory, and his granddaughter Natalie.

Contributions to the Thomas W. Norton '59 Scholarship Fund may be sent in care of:

Lafayette College
College Relations Office
307 Markle Hall
Easton PA 18042



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