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Attorney Reflects On Haskins’ Impact On Black History

By ABC-7 Anchor/Reporter Abe Lubetkin

“He’s as much a part of Black history as anything else that I’ve seen,” said El Paso attorney Donald Williams.

Six years after the 1966 game, Williams was elected UTEP’s first Black student body president.

And while the game lasted a few hours, for Williams it’s impact is lasting a lifetime.

“When you do something that great, it spills over into other aspects of our culture and our lives,” he said.

Williams was in Germany – where his father was in the military – when Coach Haskins made that fateful decision.

At the time, Williams didn’t know anything about Texas Western.

“I thought it was one of the traditionally black schools. Later I found out that most of the Blacks were on the team,” he said, laughing.

Three years later, Williams was a student at the school, and he ran for student body president in 1972 armed with an innate sense of confidence, thanks to Haskins.

Williams has served as a judge in El Paso.

Tonight he’s remembering Haskins with awe and admiration.

“To do what he did took a lot of guts, or he was crazy,” Williams said. “I guess he proved us which one it was: it was guts.”

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