clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

This Day in Baylor History: The Immortal Ten

On this day, January 22, exactly 86 years ago, a train struck the bus carrying the Baylor Basketball team, its coaches, and a few fans in bad weather on a railroad crossing in Round Rock, Texas. 10 of the 21 people in the bus died that night, and their loss helped shape one of Baylor's most special traditions.

86 years ago today, 10 Baylor players, coaches, and fans lost their lives in Round Rock due to a horrific accident while en route to play the Texas Longhorns in basketball. Baylor students honor that loss, which shook the University to its core, every year during a remembrance ceremony during Homecoming and the creation of the immortal flame.

The picture above is of the Immortal Ten statue, installed on campus finally in 2007 after over ten years of fundraising and organization. That statue is located between Pat Neff Hall and the SUB, off Fifth Street in Waco.

Visitors looking for more information on the tragedy can check Baylor's own official page, the release issued in 2007 regarding the dedication of the statue, and photos hosted by the Williamson County Historical Commission of the scene of the tragedy and the victims themselves (from the Baylor yearbook, not the scene).

One particularly moving aspect of the story involves the actions of Jame Clyde "Abe" Kelly.

Kelly, who was captain-elect of the 1927 football team, saw the train just before impact and pushed his roommate, Weir Washman, out of the bus' window. Kelly is credited with saving the life of his best friend at the greatest expense to himself. Kelly was one of the 10 who died in the collision.

RIP, gentlemen.