In 1968, Albert (Bert) Katzenmeyer was appointed Wichita State athletic director and professor of physical education. He assumed the position with a vision of revamping and rebuilding the struggling football program to provide WSU with a fresh and solid-winning athletic family. Notably, Dr. Katzenmeyer was instrumental in obtaining financing for the 31,500-seat Cessna Stadium. For his efforts, he quickly became known as ‘Mr. Shocker.’
On October 2, 1970, a plane carrying Dr. Katzenmeyer, his wife, Marian, WSU football players, friends of the team and other athletic staff members crashed on a mountain near Silver Plume, Colo. Only eight players and one crew member survived. Dr. and Mrs. Katzenmeyer were among those who perished.
Following the tragedy, scholarships were created in memory of the crash victims. In addition to the Albert & Marian Katzenmeyer Scholarship, Cessna Stadium stands as a monument to those who died and as a reminder of Dr. Katzenmeyer’s dedication and loyalty to the team and to WSU.