Campus mourns Enid Morris, former first lady at Union

Publication Date

The audience at Founders Day on Feb. 22 observed a moment of silence for Enid Eiry Morris, first lady at Union from 1979 to 1990, who passed away Wednesday, Feb. 14, 2018, at her home in Hamilton, N.Y. She was 91.

Mrs. Morris was a familiar presence on campus while her husband, John, served as Union’s president. She regularly attended lectures, performances and special events. She hosted campus and community groups at the President’s House. She often participated in student fundraising events.

"Enid was a remarkable person, President Stephen C. Ainlay told the audience at Founders Day. "Judith and I have gotten to know her very well. She and John have become absolutely splendid in their friendship with us. They came and stayed at the house. Enid, in particular, shared her memory of the house and the events they held. They loved Union College."

Born Aug. 4, 1926, in the small village of Bancffosfelen, Wales, she one of nine children of Tom and Mary Rees Walters.

After receiving a teaching certificate from Llandrindod Teachers College she taught in the experimental program in Maesteg, establishing a Welsh School in an area where English had become the primary language. This is a program that now has wide acceptance in Welsh education.

She married John Morris in 1954, when they came to the U.S. where John became pastor of the Vernon Presbyterian Church. Later moving to Hamilton, N.Y., she was active in the community and worked for Colgate University as the secretary to the Division of Humanities and later as administrative assistant to the Peace Studies Program.

While at Union, she earned her B.A. from Skidmore College.

In retirement, the couple also spent time in San Augustine, Texas; Henniker, New Hampshire; and Cazenovia, N.Y.

Survivors include are her husband, John; a son and daughter-in-law, Paul John and Susan Morris of Harvard, Mass.; and her family in Wales including niece Lee Owen of Hendy.

Private interment will be in Colgate University Cemetery. A celebration of her life is planned for the spring.

Memorial contributions may be made to Park United Methodist Church, Hamilton, N.Y.