Haywood Community College


Contacts: Debra M. Davis, Diana S. Conard

185 Freedlander Drive

Clyde, NC 28721

828-627-4521 Fax: 828-627-4513

Date: 9-28-05

For immediate release.

HCC Names Softball Field in Memory of Robert E. Forga

The softball field at Haywood Community will be named in memory of long-time friend and supporter of the college, Robert Ellis Forga. Over the years Forga demonstrated his belief and support of HCC in many ways. He not only gave to the college financially but also gave freely of his time and his business resources to benefit the college.

Forga was instrumental in the building of the softball field. He donated excavating and grading work to help make the dream of a recreational area on campus a reality.

The softball field is a popular place for not only HCC students and staff but also serves as a community resource. According to Ken Hipps, HCC media operations coordinator, 79 events were held at the softball field in a nine-month period of time last year. The field is used for HCC activities as well as a practice and playing field for Canton Little League baseball and softball. Forga's contribution has ultimately provided many hours of constructive recreation for area families.

Dr. Donald Stanton, HCC interim president, said, "It is only befitting that the college honor a man who gave so much to HCC. He is remembered for his many years of service as a college trustee and for his faithful support of the college. His legacy will live on and continue to benefit HCC students and the community."

Forga served on the HCC Board of Trustees for almost ten years, from July 1991 until his death in March 2001. During that time, he also served as a HCC Foundation Director. Forga and his wife, Viola, also established a scholarship at HCC in 1998 for students in need of financial assistance and who demonstrate academic ability.

According to Donna Forga, a Waynesville attorney and one of Forga's ten children, he never went to college but earned his education through hard work and determination. "I remember he always told us that if you work hard, you can make anything happen. I think that was one reason he was so attracted to the college. I know when I attended HCC, he kept informed on how I did and seemed impressed that I could go to college, work and take care of my two children at the same time." Donna eventually went on the Chapel Hill and received a law degree. Forga had children and grandchildren who attended the college.

"I appreciate the college giving us (the Forga family) a tangible remembrance of Daddy. It will be a place we can always look at and know that he had a part in making it happen. It is wonderful to know that his contributions will always be remembered in this way," said Donna.

Photo attached: Several members of the Robert Forga family gathered at HCC's softball field to acknowledge the naming of the field in Mr. Forga's honor. It will be called "Forga Field." Shown from left to right are: daughter Chris Forga holding grandson Zeb Forga, daughter-in-law Amy Forga, wife Viola Forga, HCC Interim President Dr. Donald Stanton, daughter Teresa Woods, grandson John Robert Caldwell, daughter Susan Caldwell, granddaughter Grace Forga, grandson Justin Woods, daughter Donna Forga, and grandson Ellis Forga. Zeb, Grace and Ellis are the children of Amy and Scott; Justin is the son of Teresa; and John Robert Caldwell is the son of Susan.