University archives receives gift of video from 2008 fire

On Aug. 12, during a special ceremony in the Sueltenfuss Library, the university archives received a gift of video that was taken of the 2008 fire that damaged the roof and fourth floor of Main Building. Xavier Ramirez, a field producer for the Archdiocese of San Antonio and Catholic Television of San Antonio donated the video and still images that he shot on the evening of the fire. The video and images are now part of the OLLU archives which are overseen by the Sueltenfuss Library.

Donor Xavier Ramirez pictured with President Emeritus Sister Jane Ann Slater, CDP; President Diane Melby, EdD, Archbishop Gustavo Garcia-Siller, Library Director Maria Cabaniss, Special Collections Librarian Jason Bourgeois and Director of Sponsored Programs Caitlin Solis.

On the evening of the May 6, 2008 fire, university camera and video equipment was in the Main Building and could not be accessed. As such, the university did not have any images or video of the event that played such a significant part in OLLU’s history. Ramirez, who was in the area on the evening of the fire, drove to campus when he heard about it on a news report and began capturing footage. Immediately following the fire, Ramirez allowed the university to use his images. With this permanent donation to the archives, future generations will have access to the video and still images.

During the Aug. 12 ceremony, OLLU Library Director Maria Cabaniss accepted the gift and thanked Ramirez for the donation. President Diane Melby presented Ramirez with a certificate of appreciation. Archbishop Gustavo Garcia-Siller was present for the ceremony and offered a blessing. OLLU President Emeritus Sister Jane Ann Slater, who was instrumental in securing the donation, also took part in the ceremony.