From England to UIndy: June Stanley makes the dining hall fun

Many University of Indianapolis students recognize June Stanley as the woman who works in the UIndy dining hall on weeknights, but few on campus know about her life. At 86,  June has about four times as much life experience as the average student at UIndy, and with that age comes an interesting life story.

June was born on May 20, 1929, in a small village outside of Leicester, England. She moved to Leicester at the age of nine, just one year before the start of the European theater of  World War II.

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Graphic by Josie Seach

During this time in England, citizens often had to take shelter, because of the  German air raids. During the war, June met her future husband, Curtis Stanley, who was a U.S. pilot stationed in England. When WWII ended, June and Curtis decided to move to the United States and get married. The two moved in late 1946 and quickly married afterwards.

In 1948,  June and Curtis had their first of four boys, Robert. Then in 1950, their second son, Ronald was born. June’s third son, Rick, was born seven years after his closest older brother, in 1957. Then, June and Curtis’ youngest son, Randy, was born in 1960.

“Growing up, my boys were great, and they still are,” June said. “After my first two, I thought my children were raised. And then all of a sudden, nine years later, I had two more.”

Although she started her family life fairly early,  June did not miss out on her chance to travel and have adventures.

“I’ve been to 15 countries, I’d say,” June said. “I’ve been to Italy, Sicily, France, Spain, all through the British Virgin Islands, the South Pacific, to Tahiti, Guam and several others.”

In 1988, Curtis passed away at the age of 68.  June said she still misses Curtis, but that the students of UIndy do a great job at filling in.

She often enjoys listening to the Beach Boys, which is by far her favorite band.

“My favorite musicians are the Beach Boys. Notice that I did not say the Beatles, even though I’m British,” June said. “I would have to say my favorite member is Brian [Wilson].”

In 2004,  June began working at UIndy when the dining services were under then head Ted Polk. She has met and talked to thousands of students over the past 11 years and enjoys her job on a daily basis.

June always greets students coming for dinner with a smile, according to freshman trumpet performance major Greg Benhman.

“I just love that she is so nice to everyone and actually acknowledges our presence,”  Benham said. “I really appreciate everything she does for the students, and I really think she enjoys seeing all of us every day.”

Freshman international relations major Casandra Wood loves that June works in the UIndy dining hall during the week.

“She is just so cute,”  Wood said. “June seems like she would have some very interesting stories to tell about her life.”

June knows that her presence in UIndy’s dining hall is appreciated and said that she has had nothing but good experiences in her time at UIndy.

“I have worked here [for] 11 years and have enjoyed every moment of it,” June said. “This school is full of great students. I have never had a problem, just fun. My favorite part about working here is being with the students.”

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