Chester C. Elson
Graduation Year: 1936
Induction Year: 1988
Sport (s): Football

Chet Elson played fullback for the DePauw football team for four seasons and also served as an assistant coach for the freshman team in 1935. Following graduation, he coached basketball and track at Madison High School, and from 1939-1942 he coached all sports at Greencastle High School. From 1942 to the end of the War, he was the Military Instructor for General Motors. He moved into a sales career in 1945 as Indiana representative for Jiffy Lift Jack Company, and was leading producer for the nation that year. he began a very successful career in insurance with Mutual of Omaha in 1945 and remained there until his retirement in 1987. He is a past president of both the Indiana and Iowa International Health and Accident Associations. In 1979, he spearheaded the drive which, in 90 days, raised $2,300,565 from 28 members of the legendary 1933 football team to honor their coach, Raymond "Gaumy" Neal, whose name stands on the fieldhouse at Lilly Center as a result. Elson, who came to DePauw with about $7 in his pocket, had considered Neal a principal influence on his life: in Elson's words, Neal "fed me when I was hungry, housed me when I had no place to stay and helped me when I had no money." Elson received an Honorary Degree of Doctor of Humane Letters from DePauw in 1980, and in 1981, was awarded the Old Gold Goblet. He was inducted into the Indiana Football Hall of Fame in 1985 and provided funds which would produce $1,000 scholarships for one player from each of the five divisions of Indiana hight school football.