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A Tale of Two Miami Mergers: The Cash’s

 

Let’s be honest. Who hasn’t zoned out during class fantasizing about meeting their very own merger on campus? Well if you haven’t, clearly you’re the one getting the good grades. I am a firm believer in the reality that good things come to those who wait, and Bitsy Cash confirmed that notion for me during our interview telling the tale of her merger story. She was a graduate of the class of 1985 and her husband of 1986.

During their undergraduate years together, Miami proved to be the perfect match in regards to academics, but also in terms of finding a soul mate, even though the road each took to get there was quite different. Bitsy’s Mom and Dad told her she needed to stay in-state, thus making Miami an obvious choice. Kevin, on the other hand, started out at the University of Kansas as an architectural engineer. He decided he wanted to be an accounting major and made the transfer to Miami his sophomore year. Besides focusing on the same major, Bitsy and Kevin had other opportunities to engage with one another on campus. For instance, they were both on the same intramural football team, which at the time was called Razzle Dazzle football and their team name “The Knotty Anthropods.” Bitsy was so passionate about intramural sports that she became even further involved in planning athletic activities through her leadership role as Sports Chairman of her sorority, Chi Omega.

Naturally, the course of our conversation led to favorite Miami traditions. The Mr. and Mrs. both agreed that eating bagels on the red steps that have and continue to be home to many late-night feasts were a memorable occurrence for them. Bitsy’s idea of a perfect bagel combination is onion, roast beef, cream cheese, and mustard while Kevin fancies the Tonya Harding Club.  In addition to the bagels, Toasted Rolls were a delicacy and treasured tradition mentioned. Amongst other fantastic memories the couple shared at Miami was Old South Week. Essentially, Old South Week is a week long of date parties in which the guys wear Confederate uniforms and partygoers partake in Jalapeno pepper eating contests and enjoy a pig roast at Hueston Woods. Hueston Woods also holds a special place in their hearts because it is the scene of one of their first dates- during which Bitsy out-fished Kevin. The weeklong festivities ended with an Old South Ball where the ladies wore elaborate hoop dresses and big floppy hats.

The couple had me laughing as Bitsy recalled the story of when Kevin first asked her out. The night of one of his fraternity parties he called her up at 5:00 pm to ask if she would go with him. Not only was this invite last minute, but he also assumed Bitsy would be impressed when he shared that he had already asked two other girls who couldn’t attend. Her response to his call was, “Good luck with your other dates.” Kevin didn’t let her denial defeat him, so he called her that following Tuesday to ask her out that weekend, making sure to give her ample notice this time. She complied, and they went to Greek’s Pizza (behind the Miami co-op) for their first date. Advisory notice to readers: from here on out the story only becomes more comical. Following their dinner date at Greek’s Pizza they went back to her house, “Doll House” on Willow Lane, where he used her home phone to call his housemates. He relayed to his friends that he was having a nice time and would not be meeting them Uptown that evening. Meanwhile Bitsy overhead the entire conversation and was stunned that he had a backup plan if the date went south. In Bitsy’s words, “Kevin was kind of a loser when it came to dating.” To rewind a bit, Bitsy and Kevin did not start dating until her second semester senior year. Prior to the onset of their romance, she had been dating one of his roommates in Kappa Alpha.        

By the time Bitsy graduated in May, they had only been together for five months. After graduation, she embarked on a backpacking trip through Europe and then returned to life in Cleveland. Kevin was still at school her first year on the job, but they saw each other frequently. They ended up getting engaged by Lake Eerie on Sweetest Day, a holiday created by American Greetings and celebrated in Cleveland. She said yes (to the dress!) and they now have two children: one son at Clemson and a daughter who is considering Miami. You never know, we may someday be reading a Miami Merger story on her daughter if the merging history stays alive in the Cash family (which is very likely considering Bitsy’s older sister also married a man from Miami).

The kiss under the Upham Arch right before she graduated in May of 1985 evidently sealed the deal for a lifelong of adventure for them both. When I asked Bitsy her tips on finding one’s merger she replied, “It’s best to not be looking.” She also advised, “don’t do anything too soon, and make sure you’re ready and you’re old enough. Don’t rush.” Recently, Bitsy was at Miami for a college visit with her daughter and commented on how it has changed for the better and is even more beautiful than both her and Kevin remembered. She said, “The whole school has had just the right amount of change to keep up with the times, but holding on to just enough tradition. They’ve done an amazing job at keeping the school up, which is a testament to the school and the amazing time that the students have there. An active alumni starts with happy students.” With that being said, I could not agree more. May we all cherish the memories we have yet to make at Miami with much love and honor. 

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Alex McNulty

Miami (OH)

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