Barry McNamara  |  Published May 07, 2024

‘A Measure of Solace’

College dedicates Priscilla Trubeck Adolphson Memorial Arbor to honor graduate who ‘ran a good race.’

MONMOUTH, Ill. – Together again.

That’s what two sorority sisters, sisters-in-law and lifelong friends are Tuesday, May 7, after Monmouth College dedicated the Priscilla Trubeck Adolphson Memorial Arbor. It forms a natural backdrop to augment the Judith Williams Trubeck Memorial Amphitheater, Fountain and Garden, located just a few feet away.

Against a backdrop of the Priscilla Trubeck Adolphson Memorial Arbor's maple saplings, David Adolphson &#... Against a backdrop of the Priscilla Trubeck Adolphson Memorial Arbor's maple saplings, David Adolphson ’67 recalls meeting his late wife, Pris ’70, while they were Monmouth students. Known as Pris, Adolphson was a 1970 Monmouth graduate who met her husband, David Adolphson ’67, on campus. He spoke at the ceremony.

“Monmouth is where we met, where we dated, where we were engaged and where we dreamed of the life we’d have together,” said Adolphson, who lost Pris in 2023 after 54 years of marriage. “She ran a good race, and she ran it as far as she could.”

Check out more than 200 photos from the dedication ceremony.

Also speaking at the ceremony was Bill Trubeck ’68, Pris’s brother, who introduced Pris to David. And it was Pris who introduced her brother to Judy, her Kappa Delta sorority sister. Bill and Judy were married 41 years.

“Before they were sisters-in-law, they were sorority sisters and friends,” said Trubeck. “Forget family, they were just great friends.”

The Priscilla Trubeck Adolphson Memorial Arbor features four maple trees, joining two other trees recently planted in the area, including one in memory of the late Nancy Speer Engquist ’74.

Among his wife’s joys, said Adolphson, were “dogs, baseball, stargazing in Colorado and maple trees.”

The plaque by the easternmost maple reads, in part, “May all who encounter the beauty and strength of these trees find a measure of solace here.”

Speaking during the dedication of the Priscilla Trubeck Adolphson Memorial Arbor, Bill Trubeck '68 reca... Speaking during the dedication of the Priscilla Trubeck Adolphson Memorial Arbor, Bill Trubeck ’68 recalls the strong friendship between his late wife, Judy, and his late sister, Pris, both of whom were members of Kappa Delta sorority. Adolphson said his wife, a devoted homemaker who spent part of her childhood in Chicago near Wrigley Field, was not one to call attention to herself: “She was modest, caring and interested in others. It was not about her, it was about you.”

Still, though, he added, “I can’t think of a more fitting place to have a memorial for Pris. I appreciate the College and the administration. It took a lot of work to make this possible.”

Trubeck said his sister’s selflessness meant a ceremony in her honor “was not her thing,” but he appreciated the opportunity to “recognize all that she was, and all that she meant to us. We loved her, and we miss her.”

A decade ago, the Adolphsons provided the naming gift for the observatory atop the College’s Center for Science and Business, which stands on the opposite side of the amphitheater.

Monmouth College President Clarence Wyatt, left, joins David Adolphson '67, center, and Bill Trubeck '6... Monmouth College President Clarence Wyatt, left, joins David Adolphson ’67, center, and Bill Trubeck ’68 at the May 7 dedication of the Priscilla Trubeck Adolphson Memorial Arbor.

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