HAMPTON — Dr. William W. Quivers Sr. and his wife, Evelyn, raised their children to keep their ``eyes on the prize,'' whether it was getting through medical school or becoming a research scientist.
The patriarch and matriarch of a family of physicians/research scientists and educators, the Quivers have succeeded in their quest. Recently, the couple's efforts were recognized, and their family was named the 1992 Honored Black Family at the 14th Annual Black Family Conference sponsored by Hampton University.
The theme at this year's conference was ``Science and Technology in the 21st Century: How Will African Americans Fare?''
A former educator at Fisk University in Nashville, Tenn., Mrs. Quivers and her husband have worked at becoming the family they wanted to be when they decided to get married during World War II. At the time, they were both in the military and stationed at Tuskegee Army Air Field in Tuskegee, Ala.
Originally from Virginia, Quivers grew up in Phoebus. He and his wife met in - of all places - Wala Wala, Wash. Fresh out of Spelman College, Mrs. Quivers was in basic training at another base with her future husband's sister, the late Marguerite Quivers Clark.
``She used to talk about her brother to us,'' says Mrs. Quivers, who was reassigned to the same base Quivers was going to in Washington State. Mrs. Clark's matchmaking paid off.
The Quivers are now the parents of William W. Quivers Sr., a Morehouse College and Massachusetts Institute of Technology graduate who is a tenured professor of physics at Wellesley College in Massachusetts; Dr. Eric S. Quivers, a Morehouse College and Howard University School of Medicine graduate who is a practicing physician and researcher with the George Washington University Department of Pediatric Cardiology; and Celia A. Quivers, a Spelman College and Hampton University graduate who is an officer in the U.S. Navy, where she is serving in the Medical Service Corps in Bethesda, Md.
Quivers and his wife and their three children and two grandchildren all attended the conference, which included a keynote address by James W. Dyke Jr., secretary of education for Virginia.
The Quivers, who now reside in Baltimore, were chosen because the family exhibits strength of character and serves as a role model for others; displays an orientation to values and principles, which provide for a strong family unit; demonstrates a commitment to education and assists others in achieving academic leadership; displays outstanding leadership through participation in community services; and is active or has played a major role in a field of science or technology and has encouraged others to be involved in similar pursuits.
``They are the best parents anyone could have,'' says Celia Quivers, who has a master's degree in science and management from HU. Before entering the military, she taught at the university.
Mrs. Quivers smiled at her daughter, who was dressed in the dark blue uniform of a naval officer. ``She was the icing on the cake after two boys,'' she says with a laugh.