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Wallace Loh
'The name [Byrd Stadium] stands as a vivid and painful reminder that a generation ago they were unwelcome on this campus,' University of Maryland President Wallace D. Loh wrote in a letter endorsing changing the name to 'Maryland Stadium.' 'For them, this past is more than mere history.' (The Daily Record/Maximilian Franz/file)

Loh wants ‘Byrd’ out of stadium name, ‘Maryland’ in

The president of the University of Maryland, College Park wants to change the name of the campus’s Byrd Stadium to “Maryland Stadium.”

President Wallace D. Loh has asked the University System of Maryland’s Board of Regents to approve the name change because former President H.C. “Curly” Byrd was “an ardent proponent of racial segregation and discrimination,” he wrote Monday in an letter to the campus community.

To black alumni and students, “the name stands as a vivid and painful reminder that a generation ago they were unwelcome on this campus. For them, this past is more than mere history,” Loh wrote.

Byrd, who served as president of the university from 1935 to 1954, is rightly considered “father and builder” of the university for dramatically increasing enrollment, faculty, funding and the size of the campus, Loh wrote.

If the regents approve the name change — which they are scheduled to consider at meeting Friday — the university will create a permanent memorial to Byrd in one of its main libraries and place a five-year moratorium on the honorific renaming of other buildings recognizing historical figures, Loh wrote.

In a letter to regents, Loh said there have been three attempts by students to change the name of the stadium, the most recent of which began this past spring.