Dr. Robert H. Spence, the third president of Evangel University, passed away on Feb. 19, 2020. In 40 years as president of Evangel, he was responsible for the education of thousands of students. As well, he was deeply involved in the Springfield community, serving on and leading a number of significant initiatives. Former students, faculty, staff, and civic and community leaders have honored him.
Among the tributes and news stories:
- Springfield Mayor Ken McClure called Dr. Spence as “an icon” of leadership. The mayor also declared Sunday, Feb. 23, 2020, the day of Dr. Spence’s memorial service a day of mourning in Springfield.
- The Community Foundation of the Ozarks remembered Dr. Spence as a servant-leader.
- Sen. Roy Blunt, R-MO, said Dr. Spence called him a great friend and said he benefitted from his advice.
- Sen. Josh Hawley, R-Mo., called Dr. Spence a visionary.
- The Springfield News-Leader explains Dr. Spence’s tremendous legacy and includes a photo gallery of Dr. Spence.
- KY3 News in Springfield remembers Dr. Spence as an encourager.
- KOLR-10 in Springfield remembers Dr. Spence as a community servant.
- Charisma News recalled Dr. Spence’s spiritual leadership.
You can email comments that will be sent to the family and maybe posted here via this link.
A selection of Facebook comments
“What an amazing man and example for me in life. I am so grateful to have known Dr. Spence and will always be grateful for the impact he made on my life. What a man of God!”
– Dan Coday
“He was a man of excellence, inspiration, and godly humility. Grateful to have been a student during his tenure as president of EU. Your lessons remain, thank you. My prayers to family, friends, and all the EU community.”
– Peggy Jo Farr
“I still remember sitting in Lewis second floor lobby watching TV my freshman year, fall 89. I felt two strong hands on my shoulders and what sounded like the voice of God, “how are you doing, Chip?” It was Dr. Spence! I was speechless. I also recall the times he spoke in chapel. You talk about the Truth and Wisdom directly from the Holy Spirit! Words can not express the respect and admiration I had for Dr. Spence.”
– Chip Davis
“President Spence was such a kind man. I remember as a student there how approachable he was. He truly cared about every student that attended Evangel. Not just about their academic success but even more he cared about their spiritual growth while there. May God Bless his family during their time of grief.”
– Michelle McClune
“Thank you, Spence family, for sharing him with us students for all those years.”
– Joy Damstrom Barria
“As a parent of an alumni I always appreciated that even if we were in a crowd of people he would shake your hand and make eye contact and have a conversation like you were the only one there. His sweet wife was such a blessing to my daughter.”
– Nita Sachen