Memories & Music
Loyalty" (The Alma Mater)
Contemporary verse by Kathy Cavins and Tim Krug (1994)
Music edited by James Caldwell (1994)
Walter P. Morgan, the third and longest serving president (1912-43), was proud of and loyal to Western. In 1930, Morgan wrote the words for the school song, which was set to music by Harold F. Schory.
In 1994, a contemporary verse, composed by WIU administrator Kathy Cavins and Tim Krug, a music graduate student, was added; the music was edited by James Caldwell, music faculty; and the new Alma Mater was debuted at Western's Inaugural New Student Convocation. This is the Western Loyalty we sing today.
Western students come together, Learning life's new way to pave.
Paths before us, ever striving, Purple, gold, our color's brave.
We all hold the keys within us. With new knowledge we will grow.
Stronger in our bond unyielding, Truer to the world we know.
Hail to Western, Alma Mater, May we honor thy fair name.
Hail to Western, ever greater, on to conquest and to fame.
Marching On" (The Fight Song)
Words and Music by Walter H. Eller
We have been singing the Fight Song since the 1935 Homecoming Game, when band director Walter Eller officially dedicated "We Are Marching On."
We are marching on 'neath the Purple and Gold;
We are singing a song that will never grow old.
All the Sons and Daughters of Western, today, go marching on.
W-E-S-T-E-R-N Yea! Western
Hail to Western, true and loyal,
We are here to win this day.
When you see those conqu'ring heroes
Marching down the way (Rah! Rah! Rah!)
Ev'ry heart and voice will sing this melody of vict'ry's song:
Fling out the Purple and the Gold, We're Marching On.
The Marching Leathernecks signature song, Dale Hopper's arrangement of "Georgia On My Mind," has been an audience favorite at Western since 1982. Hopper retired in May 2002 following 23 years as Western, including 20 years as director of bands. He died unexpectedly Sept. 16, 2005, but the band director's legacy lives on in “Georgia.”
Late last night while we were all in bed,
Mother O'Leary with the lantern in the shed,
And then the cow kicked it over, and winked her eye and said,
“It'll be a Hot Time in the Old Town Tonight.”