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Elizabeth Beguinet Passes Away

Duke has had a tough weekend

Duke Chapel
DURHAM, NC - FEBRUARY 19: A general view inside the Duke University Chapel
Photo by Lance King/Getty Images

This has been a very tough weekend for Duke athletics: first Swimming and Diving coach Dan Colella died of cancer on Friday; on Saturday, it claimed fencing director of administration and recruiting Elizabeth Beguinet.

Quite honestly, we haven’t followed fencing all that closely but we know Duke has done quite well over the years and she played a major role in that. Duke AD Nina King released a statement via Twitter saying that it was “[a]n enormous loss for the Duke Family. Elizabeth was an incredible woman who cared so deeply for our Duke fencers. Her unbreakable bond and partnership with Alex was beautiful. I am personally grateful for everything she taught me about fencing, always with a twinkle in her eye.”

It’s not commented on very much but there has always been a certain amount of traffic up and down 15-501. Rod Broadway, for instance, was a terrific football player at UNC and coached for years at Duke.

Beguinet also graduated from UNC but built a real home at Duke. Her husband Alex took the Duke job in 1985 and she was part of a package deal. Clearly she’s much loved and will be missed. Our deepest condolences to her family and team.