A “totally rad” picture that graced the University’s Homecoming flyers has alumni reminiscing about sunny days surfing on Palm Beach as students in the 1980s.
The photo shows a group of eight surfers posing on the beach at the end of Dunbar Road, said Eddie Ritz ’93, who is the third man from the left, holding a CB surfboard. A friend was the first to spot Ritz, now a news assistant at the Palm Beach Post, on the Homecoming mailers. He took a picture and said, “Hey, I think that was you.”
“We had a lot of fun,” Ritz said. “We surfed quite a bit together.”
The University’s Homecoming Alumni Celebration is tonight, with a full day of activities tomorrow. View the schedule here.
The Mast, PBA’s yearbook at the time, identified the crew as the Surf Club — though it was never really all that official. The man with a mullet on the far left of the photo remains unidentified. Next, from left to right, the surfers are Tina Eichstadt ’92 (kneeling), C. Todd Smith, Ritz, Danny Brabham, Andrew Sterling ’91, Keith Copley ’91 and Tim Sterling ’90.
Ritz was the best man at Copley’s wedding. Copley is a missionary in Papa New Guinea whose two daughters, Lindsey and Lauren Copley, who are current students. Lindsey is a junior studying nursing, and Lauren is a sophomore studying psychology. Their dad always tells them stories about his time at PBA, “which is really funny to hear,” Lindsey Copeland said.
The young women have two sisters, Layla, 15, and Lexie, 12, who attend an international boarding school in the southwestern Pacific island where the Copley family has lived since 2000, Lindsey Copley said.
C. Todd Smith is a successful personal injury and accident law attorney in Orlando. He saw the Homecoming flyer on Facebook and was surprised to see one of his favorite pictures from that era, he said.
When the surf was good, he and his friends would go to the beach between classes, even if just for a few hours. On that cold day, he stopped by to check the waves and watch his friends surf before heading back to class.
“I am in touch with several of the people in the photo and still consider them by best friends,” Smith said. “My time at PBA and time with friends at the beach are some of my most cherished memories.”
Photo: This photo on Homecoming flyers prompted reminiscing among PBA alumni. The man with a mullet on the far left of the photo remains unidentified. Next, from left to right, the surfers are Tina Eichstadt (kneeling), C. Todd Smith, Ritz, Danny Brabham, Andrew Sterling ’91, Keith Copley ’91 and Tim Sterling ’90.