Torchbearers carry on Baylor’s history and spirit

This year's freshman torchbearer holds the torch and sings "That Good Old Baylor Line" at Freshman Mass Meeting. He will participate in lighting the homecoming bonfire during the Extravaganza Friday night. Liesje Powers | Multimedia Editor

By Madalyn Watson | Reporter

Baylor revealed this year’s torchbearers Thursday night during Freshman Mass Meeting in the Ferrell Center.

The four torchbearers are chosen by the Baylor University Chamber of Commerce to represent spirit of the student body and participate in homecoming traditions such as the Freshman Mass Meeting and the passing of the torch.

The four torchbearers are Arlington freshman Chris Malone, Boerne sophomore Sutton Houser, Lake Jackson junior Sarah Hosack and Lubbock senior Sean Elemento.

When the torchbearers met for the first time after learning their important roles for this year’s homecoming, Sean Elemento, the senior representative, heard something that resonated with him:

“The Immortal Ten would not want to be remembered as heroes; they [would have] wanted to be remembered as friends and as Baylor students,” Elemento said.

Elemento was shocked and believed he was being pranked when he was received the email saying he was nominated and chosen to be a torchbearer because his current roommate, senior Nate Wasserman, was torchbearer twice.

“Being able to do it this year is even cooler knowing that I am able to follow in his shoes and also the shoes of all other people that have done it before,” Elemento said.

The junior representative, Sarah Hosack said she has been waiting to attend Baylor since she was a little girl because her mother and sister both graduated from Baylor. Hosack said her favorite Baylor tradition is homecoming.

“It sounds cheesy, but it kind of is like a dream come true for the little girl who just wanted to go to Baylor for so long and now I get to have such a huge role to play in one of our biggest traditions,” Hosack said.

Hosack has been a Line Camp leader and a community leader; she is now working at the Weithorn Undergraduate Admissions Center, where she talks about Baylor’s history and traditions for a living.

“A friend once told me that I was Baylor in a human,” Hosack said.

Sutton Houser serves and provides for Baylor in more ways than being a torchbearer for this year’s homecoming festivities. Houser is the vice president of the sophomore class.

“Last year I was able to experience [homecoming] for the first time really. I lived in Penland, so I just walked outside my door and I could see the parade and I loved that. [Also, I] went to Pigskin last year and really enjoyed all the wonderful performances people put on and see their hard work,” Houser said.

However, this year Houser will not only be participating in the Homecoming parade as a torchbearer, but he will be performing in Pigskin alongside his fraternity brothers in Kappa Omega Tau.

“I don’t really know why I was selected and I don’t really think it matters that it was me that was selected. I know a lot of great people at Baylor. That’s what makes Baylor unique. And so I am more excited to be able to be a small part of the many wonderful people here at Baylor,” Houser said.

Chris Malone, the freshman representative, has known that Baylor was the place for him since he was a child.

“Baylor was the only place I applied and I knew from the beginning that I wanted to come here. I have been coming to homecoming since I was really little and pretty much my dad’s whole side of the family has gone to Baylor, so there’s deep tradition there in green and gold,” Malone said.

Malone said having his sister, senior Victoria Malone, show him the ropes made the transition to college easier.

“Every once in a while I’ll get the feeling, it’s like, ‘Wow, I am at the place where my grandpa and my whole family went’ and it’s really amazing. I take it for granted sometimes, but it is such a gift,” Malone said.

Malone not only comes from a line of Baylor alumni, but his grandfather who passed away soon after he was born, Orba Lee Malone, was the youngest member elected to the board of trustees in 1952.

Orba Lee Malone spoke about ideas that he had for homecoming as well as his family’s relationship with Baylor in a segment of the Baylor Institute for Oral History’s project titled Living Stories.

“My wife and I never would sit down and talk to any one of our children about going to Baylor. The truth of the matter was, we didn’t have to. We started taking them to homecoming before they were started to school. They just got brainwashed that way,” Orba Lee Malone said.