Monday, September 7, 2009

Who Killed Leo?

October 3, 2009, marks the University of North Alabama's homecoming. This year's theme is Leo. No, not the male lion housed with his female companion on campus, but those who have donned the lion's suit over the years. All former Leos are being asked to contact Carol Lyles for information concerning special events in their honor. We know with certainty that one Leo will not be there.

Ronnie Perryman was a Florence native who attended UNA in the early 1970s. A large, outgoing young man, Perryman was perfect for the role of the university mascot, a position he held for two years before transferring to the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa.

By the mid-1970s, Perryman was living alone in an apartment complex near the campus. It wasn't unusual for the sociology student to be without contact with his family for days at a time. No one knows the exact hour that Ronnie Perryman died, murdered in his own apartment. Crime scene investigators theorized he had been dead a week when his body was found.

Tuscaloosa authorities have never solved Perryman's murder, although they periodically request any new information the public may have concerning the brutal crime. Since Ronnie's death, both his parents have passed away, still waiting for some answer to their many questions. After 35 years, there may never be an answer as to who killed Ronnie Perryman. We hope he's remembered on October 3rd with the others who have played Leo over the years. He deserves no less.

What's up with this: Winner of the UNA Purple Reign contest was the Lauderdale County License Commissioner's office. One of our contributors who visited the office that day had praise for the effort, but two thumbs down for the flying feathers wafting about the building. Ah Choo!