Victor Ludorum RIP
Within a few days of my arrival at the militaryinstitution that was to be my home for six years, thenew boys were given a conducted tour of the schoolbuildings and grounds. I should add that it was thekind of place that if you absconded, you were severelybeaten so we were quite apprehensive of the rather tallhead boy who was our tour guide. In the dining hall,he paused under an imposing painting of orphansmarching through the main gates and delivered a shorthistory of the school. Invariably our attention began towander and several of us noticed a panel on whichwere listed winners of the Victor Ludorum Trophy.‘
Who was Victor Ludorum?
’ piped up a small voicefrom the restless throng. The head boy stared coldly atthe youngster for several seconds and then replied, ‘
Victor was a boy at this school who passed away under tragic circumstances. He was very popular and hisheartbroken mother donated this trophy which is awarded each year in his memory.
Try to remember him in your prayers.
We gazed in awe at the trophy before beingushered away to view the toilet block and the chapel.
As the days passed, however,some of us recalled the tour, and, needing to satisfy our curiosity, enquired about poorVictor and his untimely ending.
Though memory fades, I think I was told that Victor had been searching for amaster’s favourite dog on the cliffs overlooking the bay.
Stumbling around in thedarkness on a wild, wintery night, Victor had fallen several hundred feet down thecliffs onto the shingle beach below.
His last resting place was in a nearby village.‘
Sound asleep in its kennel the whole time
I had made friends with Joe, aboy who was later sent to work on a farm in Australia. Oh, how we envied him!When I
told him about Victor, he looked puzzled and said that there was no grave.During a particularly violent gale, Victor, with no thought for his own safety, had jumped fully clothed into the local harbour to rescue another boy who had fallen fromthe pier. Though the rescue was successful, poor Victor himself had been swept awayand was never seen again. Some onlookers were sure they heard him singing thechorus of the school song until it faded away, drowned out by the howling wind.‘
Play the Game, Play the Game, Play the Game.’