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The Spike or Victoria University College Review 1945

Patricia Hope Higgin

page 20

Patricia Hope Higgin

With the death of Pixie Higgin early this year, at the age of 26, those who had known her during her student days and afterwards felt a deep sense of loss.

Pixie had a brilliant academic record, but examinations passed and honours gained have always meant less to students than to the outside world. So she was known to them, and will be remembered, far more because of her vivid personality, which combined very high ideals with tolerance and gaiety.

Pixie was one of the large body of part-time students who have always played such a prominent part in V.U.C. activities, and though she worked—and worked hard—first in the Labour Department and later in External Affairs, all the time she was studying for her B.Com. degree, she took a full part in the sport and social life of the college.

Coming to V.U.C in 1937, after being dux of Wellington Girls' College, Pixie joined the basketball club, with which she was associated during the next four years. She played in the A team from 1938, and in 1941 was club captain, and later coach. During this time she gained two New Zealand and several V.U.C blue, and was an outstanding member of the team. She also played tennis, and helped actively with extravaganzas. In 1940 she became women's vice-president, and in 1941 after Ron Corkill had left to join the forces, the second woman president in the history of the college. In the same year she won the Lady Stout Bursary and gained her degree.

Those who knew Pixie well feel that she was not only highly gifted, but also that as impossible to meet her without recognising a very fine and rare sprit. In an age when integrity is not often met with, Pixie possessed this quality to a very high degree. A basic part of her philosophy was that these who had the advantage of a university education owed a debt to the community, and she believed particularly that women should be prepared to accept responsibility equally with men. Pixie's own life was the best proof of her arguments in this respect.

War has Taken indiscriminately from our student world the obscure and the giants among their fellows. Their sacrifice was equal and their friends will miss the ones no less than the others; but among them are some whose prominence makes their loss shock even those who did not know them personally.

T/Sgt. Ronald John Corkill was killed in action in Italy on September 23rd, 1944.

He came to this college in 1936 and at once took a vigorous share in the sports life of the college, in Shooting, Football, and Rowing. He was at one time or another on the Committees of all these Clubs and represented them in their first teams, working his way into the First XV by 1939. In 1938 and 1939 he was President of Weir House, and in successive years served as Committee Member, Men's Vice-President, and President of the Executive. In 1940 he was President, Senior Tournament Delegate, and one of VUC's Rhodes Scholarship nominees. He was capped B.A. in 1939 and MA. in 1941, In January of 1941 he entered camp and later served in the Pacific for sixteen months until being transferred to the Middle East last year. He was killed on his first day in action there. Some will remember Ron Corkill as a speedy forward, others as genial Tournament Delegate, others for a delightful Extrav performance as the White Rabbit. He lived a full and useful life and died believing in what he fought for.

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Winter Glade

Winter Glade

R.D. Hopkirk