A Family of Bulldogs Born of Tigers

For One Family, the Proverbial Battle of Cats Versus Dogs is Anything But True

Joe and Roberta Capps are Tigers who bore a litter of Bulldogs. Four of the six children of the University of Missouri alumni obtained a Drake education. And now that legacy extends into the second generation.

“Bob got it started,” says Martha Capps, JO’78. “He was the first to go.”

Bob Capps, BN’70, was followed by younger brother George, LA’71, LW’75; then Tom, LA’74; and, finally, Martha.

FAMILY VALUES “We were fortunate to have parents who valued education,” says Martha. “My parents would’ve sent me anywhere.”

The freedom to make her own decision on which college to attend is shared by Leslie Capps Eakes, ED’00, Bob’s youngest daughter. Although both her parents were alumni and she had spent time on the Drake campus with her sister, Sarah Capps Hamburg, JO’97, Leslie didn’t feel obligated to follow suit.

“I remember being with my parents in an airport in Chicago,” says Leslie. “I had already looked at  Miami-Ohio and DePauw and was on my way to visit another school when I said, ‘I want to go to Drake.’” With the college search over, the family never got on the plane. They spent the day sightseeing in Chicago and returned home.

It wasn’t enough for Ellen O’Byrne (pictured) to have a mother who was an alumna, either. “I knew I should look [at Drake],” says Ellen, a junior marketing major and Martha’s youngest daughter. “I visited Kansas and ISU. It wasn’t until my second campus visit when something clicked. I knew I wanted to go to Drake. It just fit.”

SHARING THE DRAKE EXPERIENCE With so many family members attending the same university, there are bound to be awkward moments — Leslie was the student of a professor who also taught her mom. “He called me [my mom’s name] once,” she says.

Awkwardness aside, Martha, Leslie and Ellen agree that their Drake educations have been a foundation they’ve built on, both personally and professionally. And it’s something that has strengthened their family ties with shared memories and similar experiences. Martha says, “It’s nice to say, ‘Remember …’ and have everyone know what you’re talking about.”

For the Puppies

The Drake University Legacy Program is the University’s way of recognizing its youngest Bulldogs. For information on the program, including special activities and scholarships, and to register your budding Bulldog, visit www.drake.edu/alumni/legacy.

— Abbie Hansen, JO’01

More Photos:

Capps family photo Photo of Capps in Drake sweatshirts Martha Capps graduation photo Young Capps with Drake sweatshirt Alum on horseback graduation photo Capps photo

One Response to “A Family of Bulldogs Born of Tigers”

  1. “A Family of Bulldogs Born of Tigers” I was really shocked when I read the title but when I really read the full content, I understand the values of the family. It is like raising cute little puppies to be a strong bulldog and will run a legacy like tigers.