Last fall, 2014 Lindsay Medallions were presented to three individuals in recognition of their impact on Big Blue athletics: former student-athletes Brittany Czaplicki ’14 and Wes Hillen ’13, and Donna Meyer Spangler Murphy ’68, all of Decatur. Murphy received a special Lindsay Medallion in appreciation of the contributions to MU made by her and her late husband, Steve Spangler, also class of 1968, designer of the Lindsay Medallion. Named in honor of the late F. Merrill Lindsay, trustee emeritus, and his late wife, Margery “Sis” Lindsay, the Lindsay Medallion has been presented annually since 1997 to honor student-athletes for outstanding performances on their respective Big Blue teams.
Czaplicki was an outstanding guard for the Big Blue women’s basketball team. A four-time CCIW Academic All-Conference selection, she was named her team’s MVP in 2013 and 2014 and was named CoSIDA Academic All-District during the 2013-14 season. Czaplicki was named to the CCIW All-Conference Second Team in both 2013 and 2014.
Hillen was an excellent performer as a member of the Big Blue men’s golf team. He owns two school records: lowest 36-hole score (136) and lowest season scoring average (73.52). He also holds the record for second lowest season scoring average (73.73) and second lowest career scoring average (74.83), and he is tied in third for the lowest 18-hole round (68).
Murphy has been a faithful supporter of Millikin for many years. Together with her late husband, Steve Spangler, who taught art for the Decatur Public School District for 31 years and was named 1991 Teacher of the Year, they established the Stephen A. Spangler Scholarship Fund at Millikin. This endowed scholarship is awarded annually to a deserving Millikin student majoring in art. “Through this scholarship, he continues to share his love for the arts with everyone,” Donna says.
“Steve felt so honored to design the Lindsay Medallion,” Donna says.
After pledging TKE and Tri Delta in fall 1964, Steve and Donna met just before chapel one Wednesday morning. Steve asked her to Homecoming, and that was the beginning of a very short 35 years together, Donna says.
Both were active at Millikin, from holding class offices to participating in Homecoming plays, freshmen camp and pompon squad. They served on numerous committees and held fraternity and sorority offices. Steve was best known for designing “magnificent Homecoming house decs,” Donna says.
“This event brought thousands from the community driving by campus enjoying the creative masterpieces Millikin students created,” she notes. “It was a wonderful time.”
Following their graduation from Millikin, the couple taught thousands of area children at various Decatur schools. Donna spent eight years teaching at Oak Grove Elementary, then taught reading at Dennis Elementary until she retired in 2005. In 1968, Steve began teaching art at Woodrow Wilson Junior High School. After two years, he began working at his alma mater, MacArthur High School, where he taught art until his death in 1999. Shortly before he died, Steve served as president of the Millikin Alumni Association.