TIAH: George P. Mitchell is born

George P. Mitchell, class of 1940, was a well-known benefactor, contributing funds to academia and the arts during his lifetime.

May 21, 1919: George P. Mitchell, class of 1940, was born in Galveston. Mitchell's many successes in the oil and gas industry — including the invention of hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, the technique used to release natural gas from shale rock — allowed him to be a generous benefactor to Texas A&M.

Mitchell gave more than $95 million to A&M, more than any other donor. Those contributions made possible the Mitchell Tennis Center, the university's Galveston campus and the George P. and Cynthia Woods Mitchell Institute for Fundamental Physics and Astronomy. He died of natural causes in his Galveston home on July 26, 2013.

Then-A&M President R. Bowen Loftin credited Mitchell with the growth of the College of Science, particularly the Department of Physics and Astronomy.

"Students benefit immensely from having top faculty teach them," he said. "Mr. Mitchell's contributions enable us to bring the very best faculty in physics and astronomy."

May 21, 1996: The torch relay for the Centennial Olympic Games came through the A&M campus. Former A&M athlete Randy Barnes was the lone Aggie to compete in the Atlanta Olympics, landing a gold medal in the shot put.

May 21, 2004: Jessica Slataper Kapchinski, A&M class of 2004, no-hit Tennessee Chattanooga in the NCAA regionals as the Aggies won 6-0. Kapchinski struck out nine, while walking three.

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