A halftime formation presented by the Texas Western College Marching Cavalcade at the Sun Bowl game Saturday drew a blast Sunday from a California television viewer.
The California viewer, who signed her name Mary Hobson Crow, was indignant over the formation of the hammer and sickle used during the halftime presentation “Let Freedom Ring.”
A telegram to Dr. Judson F. Williams, president of El Paso Chamber of Commerce (marked “Report Delivery and Get Answer) read:
“During the football game between Wichita and Villanova halftime festivities why was Khrushchev and the hammer and sickle dramatized – which school was responsible for such a demonstration – many viewers out here are really disturbed – please wire answer collect.
Mary Hobson Crow, 10282 Tujunga Canyon Blvd. Tujunga, Calif.”
Dr. Williams received the telegram at 10 a.m. Sunday and at 2 p.m. Wired back:
“Mary Hobson Crow,
10282 Tujunga Canyon Blvd.
“Re your telegram – entire theme of 27th annual Southwestern Sun Carnival and Sun Bowl game based on “Our American Heritage.” Since quite evident neither you or disturbed viewers saw entire halftime ceremonies of Sun Bowl game I will give you brief description of theme and what took place.
"Opening ceremonies of game included some 10 local high school bands who combinded into pregame drill and concluded with playing of National Anthem.
"At halftime the celebrated band and Golddiggers of our own Texas Western College, which is part of the University of Texas system, presented splendid performance based on theme “Let Freedom Ring.” Objective to portray idea of freedom as opposed to Communism – that freedom will win over any adversary.
“Opening formation was radio tower depicting 'Voice of America” and hope offered world.
"Second formation was tradition at church signifying freedom of worship which Free World enjoys – introducing third formation was brief rendition of 1812 Overture with positive announcement that Khrushchev and his henchmen, represented by hammer and sickle which was formed on filed as a suicide monogram representing the enemy standing in way of world freedom. Band played brief portion of the Volga Poatman; immediately thereafter band broke into Stars and Stripes Forever and image of Uncle Sam was formed.
“Announcement then boldly stated “Here is the symbol of hope for free men everywhere” immediately followed by band playing 'Yankee Doodle Dandy” and “God Bless America” - then followed a medley of U.S. Armed Forces songs.
“Halftime ended with Golddiggers forming into celebrated dance line and band playing “Eyes of Texas.”
“We are immensely proud of our college and Sun carnival; would like to invite you and any other interested to plan now to attend next year's Sun Carnival in El Paso where sunshine is warm and friendly and where feeling of confidence and faith in true American tradition is still a part of our way of life.”
It was signed by Dr. Williams, as president of the Chamber of Commerce, and Bill Latham president of the Southwestern Sun Carnival Association.