Indiana University Bloomington

Respect for a down-to-earth person

Johnny B. Hartman, Spencer

My memory of Mr. Wells was in October 1993 when my father, Robert F. Hartman, passed away. My father was a middle-class, quiet, keep-to-yourself kind of person. My father had retired previously 13 years. He had been forced to retire because of arthritis. He had worked there for 26 years as a watchman, police officer and fire inspector. But to get back to my point, we thought Mr. Wells had never known my father. But at the funeral home, Mr. Wells showed up and as he was leaving, I approached him to thank him for coming. He looked up and told me some stories about my father and himself in the medical building, and laughed respectfully up to me. I just thought it was such a great thing for the chancellor of Indiana University to show up at my father's funeral and show his respect for a down-to-earth person that wasn't a professor or wasn't a president or anything else. For that, I owe him a lot of thanks, and I just wanted to tell his family and everybody that I always think a lot of Mr. Wells. I believe they were all the same to Mr. Wells, whether they be a politician or a watchman.

From Remembering Herman B Wells, 1901-2000:, March 22, 2000

Thanks to the Bloomington Herald-Times for allowing Digital Wells to publish these excerpts from their archive.