Hewitt: Man wants to return Aggie ‘pot’ borrowed after bonfire collapse
A Hewitt man has a one-of-a-kind connection with a classmate he met just once, on a dark and somber day in Texas A&M history.
Reece Flood, was born and reared in Waco, but 20 years ago he was a student at Texas A&M in College Station and early in the morning on Nov. 18, 1999 he was camped out in line to buy tickets for the Aggies’ annual showdown with the University of Texas.
“It started off as a really fun night and I think for all of us it was a normal fun night,” he said.
The fun evaporated when he and his friends learned the woodpile had collapsed.
“Then we found out it was more serious and all the sudden burning bonfire didn’t matter anymore,” he said.
He and his friends rushed to help.
“For all of us young, dumb kids we were ready to get in there. Most of us had worked on bonfire before. We knew how to handle the logs,” he said.
“My thought was give us 10 minutes, we will have all these logs pulled and stacked neatly on the side and then you can go to work. Obviously, that was not the right thing to do and the first responders knew that,” he recalled.
Hard hats, or “pots” were required at the bonfire site, but Flood didn’t have his.
“I saw a girl walking by with her pot in her hand and I just said, ‘Hey, can I use that?’ And then she just handed it over and kept walking.”
That was the first and last time he ever talked to her.
About 70 students were working on the 60-foot-high woodpile when it collapsed.
Eleven Aggies were killed outright and a 12th later died.
Another 27 were injured, some seriously.
Now, 20 years later, mixed in with his college memorabilia, the third-generation Aggie is trying to reconnect that piece of history with its rightful owner.
Based on how it is decorated, he has some clues as to who the woman is.
“(She) probably lived in Krueger at the time or at some point. Looks like she’s in the class of 2002 and her first name is Emily is our best guess. This symbol is for Hart Hall. Other than that a lot of the stickers everybody decorated their pot differently,” he said.
He wrote a post about the pot Sunday night on Facebook that has been shared more than a thousand times.
He’s asking anyone with information that could help in his search to find him on Facebook and send him a message.