Top of the Morning, Aug. 23, 2018

Top of the Morning, Aug. 23, 2018

I figured since BRYAN HOLDERFIELD is happily retired, he'd spill the beans about all that high-tech stuff that happens at Beckman Institute on the University of Illinois campus.

I figured wrong.

"Roof still leaks after 29 years," was the best scoop he offered up. "The rest is top secret. Research at work."

Holderfield was at Beckman the day it opened — "Received my keys," he said, "and got lost in the building" — and wound up working 29 years under six directors as the facility's go-to electrician.

Now 60, the Mahomet-Seymour grad said the toughest part of the job was "making the decision to retire."

The feeling's clearly mutual. The administration at Beckman tipped its hat by dedicating a plaque to Holderfield and hanging it by the electrical vault. Take that, Red Grange.

"It was very unexpected. I feel very blessed they felt this way about my years of service," he said. "Truly one of the proudest moments in my lifetime."