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Bruce Crane 1977

About me: I grew up in Pleasantville, Iowa. After high school graduation in 1973, I began my freshman year at Iowa State University. When I decided I wanted to teach math and coach, I thought it would be beneficial to go to a college where I could play football. Why Central? One of my high school coaches, John Danks ’69, had a brother, Jim Danks, who was the assistant football coach at Central. I transferred to Central the spring of my freshman year.

Employment: After graduating from Central, I taught high school math and coached in Parkersburg, Iowa. In 1983 I left teaching and began working in information technology at Principal Financial Group. In 1993 I began serving as a pastor on a part-time basis at Walnut Creek Church in Des Moines, while continuing to work at Principal. I continue doing both now. From 2013–18 I served as the baseball chapel leader for the Iowa Cubs.

How did Central prepare me for the life I’m leading now: My math education at Central taught me to solve problems, think logically and teach others. Playing on the football team taught me the importance of working together with others and carrying out my responsibilities.

Memories? Being a part of the 1974 football team that won the national championship!

Favorite tradition? The year-end football banquet, where Coach Schipper would talk about the seniors.

Favorite professors? Dr. Don Meyer—I had math classes with him for most of my years at Central. He made math fun, and I loved his story about a class he had while working for his doctorate where a student asked the professor about how the math they were studying could be used. The professor responded, “This is pure mathematics!”

Coach Schipper—I remember asking him to lead an evening vespers service and he shared his favorite verse, Micah 6:8, which reads, “He has shown you, o man, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God?”

Hobbies/Activities: I like to work out, read and climb 14,000 foot mountains in Colorado.

What I’m reading: The Bible, which I would highly recommend to everyone. I am currently in the gospel of John; The Art of Parenting by Dennis and Barbara Rainey; and The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis, which I am reading together with my wife for probably the fifth time or more!

What advice would you give to current students? Work hard, do your best, and live out Proverbs 3:5 -6, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not rely on your own understanding; in all your ways know him, and he will make your paths straight.”

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  • Thomas Iverson


    10:40 am on September 17, 2019

    Hey, Bruce so good to hear from you and the life you have led. Just one comment: That story about the math Professor in grad school-are you sure that was Don Meyer? I had exactly the same experience in Number Theory class at Washington University. I know Don was an excellent professor, told good stories and is one of my best friends but I think that story was mine.
    Tom Iverson
    Retired Math Professor

  • Gary Griffenhagen


    9:56 pm on July 2, 2019

    Bruce – I appreciate your comments about Central, about football (a National Championship!) and your life. It is really great to hear about someone and their life. As for knowing Him, I was born again at the end of my senior year at Central. Your comments about reading the Bible and trusting the Lord with all your heart are words all generations of today need to hear and heed. Many of the ills and issues with this life would be resolved if we would heed your words; I speak from experience as I work with homeless, those in prison (Salt Lake County Jail) and have seen God touch and heal many from all walks of life with physical and emotional hurts.

  • Carol Wilson


    2:45 pm on July 2, 2019

    That’s a great story Bruce. I have been to Walnut Creek on a coupe of occasions and have sent people there. It’s a great church and if you are on staff that says a lot about you. May the Lord continue to use your endeavors for His Kingdom.

    Carol Wilson 61′ and retired missionary.