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Columbus couple got to participate in eagle flight at Auburn football game

Attending game were (l-r) Auburn president Steven Leath, Janet Leath, Cathy Bickerstaff, Rennie Bickerstaff, Andrew Hopkins, Spirit.
Attending game were (l-r) Auburn president Steven Leath, Janet Leath, Cathy Bickerstaff, Rennie Bickerstaff, Andrew Hopkins, Spirit. Auburn University

A Columbus couple got to participate in the eagle flight before an Auburn football game earlier this season.

Cathy and Rennie Bickerstaff were invited to release Spirit who circles Jordan-Hare Stadium before each Auburn contest.

They got the opportunity at Auburn’s first game of the season against Georgia Southern.

Charles Martin from the Auburn office of communications and marketing said the Bickerstaff’’s story appeared in a university newsletter.

The story tells how the Bickerstaffs helped rescue a baby bald eagle that had fallen from its nest on their farm.

Andrew Hopkins, a raptor specialist at the Southeastern Raptor Center at the Auburn University College of Veterinary Medicine, came to the Bickerstaff farm and saved the eagle.

Rennie Bickerstaff is a 1970 alumnus of what is now Auburn’s Raymond J. Harbert College of Business.

“We have long been supporters of the business college and athletics but ever since Andrew came out and rescued that baby bald eagle, we have loved the Southeastern Raptor Center and supported it as well. We were thrilled to be asked to be invited to release Spirit prior to the Georgia Southern,” Cathy Bickerstaff said in the story. “ And we are so proud of the raptor program and of the wonderful veterinary college at Auburn for the work that they do and the recognition that they bring to Auburn.”

Larry Gierer: 706-571-8581, @lagierer

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