One of the world’s truly good men, Clyde Cook, passed away last night in the study of his home in Fullerton, CA. Dr. Cook was the president of Biola University from 1982 to 2007, during which time he led the school through serious challenges and into a position of national academic respect; all while maintaining a steadfast commitment to Biblical Christian beliefs and an atmosphere of Christian charity.
While Dr. Cook was up front about not being able to please everybody – I never heard of him engaging in political flattery or false praise – he was universally liked and cherished. He was a tall man who turned down a full ride to play basketball at USC to come to Biola, yet his stature only engendered respect, not indimidation. He had a knack for taking himself lightly, frequently appearing in student films in some comic facility.
It is a rare thing in this world for a man to take so seriously the responsibility entrusted to him while being able to take himself lightly.
Clyde Cook was man with a remarkable story. His parents were missionaries in China, and when WWII broke out young Clyde spent time in three concentration camps, seperated from his family. Years later they would be reunited.
At every luncheon and dinner I ever saw Clyde attend at Biola, he always greeted and thanked the servers and catering staff. He saw them as another Biola employee, just like he was.
Those who met Clyde don’t remember the resume, the natrual giftedness, or his incredible background. They remember a kind man with an calm and deep inner passion to do God’s work on earth as it is in heaven.
May God grant Clyde Cook a rich entrance into His heavently kingdom.
Updated: Scriptorium Daily is running a serious about Dr. Cook and his legacy.