His Support Keeps the Ball Rolling
When the New York Yankees and Cincinnati Reds organizations wanted C.K. Rust ’63 to consider playing ball for them after high school, C.K.’s mother, a longtime school administrator, insisted on education. Not a bad decision, as C.K. came to Davidson, pursued medicine and became a successful gastroenterologist.
“Meeting Davidson’s football coaches at a camp in North Myrtle Beach got me hooked on the idea of going there,” he says. “I played baseball and football freshman year, but being a pre-med student, I ended up quitting football after one year so I could put academics first. I continued with baseball, playing as often as I could while managing classwork.”
Regardless of the tough decision to step back from football, sports were a huge part of C.K.’s time at Davidson, and he has maintained close ties to the baseball program. He has included generous support for operational expenses in his estate.
“Rucker Taylor is doing an exceptional job as head coach, and I want the program to have everything it needs to be successful,” he says. Scholarships are critical, but if we don’t have excellent fields, bats and uniforms, we won’t get the best players’ attention. You’d be surprised what those things cost these days. Baseball has grown by leaps and bounds since my time playing on the football practice field—they’d bring in a temporary fence and bleachers for games, and I even had to return my cap at the end of the season.”
C.K. retired after 32 years in gastroenterology, saying he practiced “in a good time of medicine,” and now spends his time overseeing a couple of golf courses in North Myrtle Beach and Charleston, South Carolina. He also participates in high-performance auto racing at tracks along the East Coast.
Staying connected to Davidson remains a top priority. His contributions will help ensure successful baseball seasons for years to come, and the players will definitely get to keep their caps.