Wife of former UA President Guy Bailey dies after long battle with cancer

CW Staff

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Wife of former University of Alabama President Guy Bailey, Jan Tillery-Bailey, died Sunday evening after a long battle with cancer. Tillery-Bailey had been diagnosed with cancer at least twice in the past and was a two-time survivor, according to a Lubbock Avalanche-Journal report from 2008.

Bailey, who teaches two courses in the English department – Intro to Linguistics and History of the English Language – sent out an email to his students to inform them of the news.

“Dear Class Members,” Bailey said in the email. “My wife passed away last night. Class will not meet tomorrow; instead, I will post an assignment for you on Blackboard.”

Current UA President Judy Bonner sent an emailed statement, sending her condolences to the Bailey family.

“The University of Alabama is deeply saddened over the passing of Dr. Jan Tillery-Bailey and wishes to extend our heartfelt sympathies to Guy and their entire family,” Bonner said. “Everyone who got to know Jan was inspired by her courage, her spirit and her determination. The thoughts and prayers of the entire UA family are with the Baileys during this sad time.”

Bailey served 57 days as president of the University, spanning from Sept. 3, 2012 to Oct. 31, 2012. Bailey was chosen by the UA Board of Trustees after an extensive search process for a University president to replace Robert Witt, following Witt’s appointment to chancellor of the UA system. Bailey resigned from the position through a campuswide emailed statement, citing his wife’s health concerns.

“Today, I have notified Chancellor Witt that I am stepping down as president of The University of Alabama,” Bailey said in the Oct. 31, 2012 email. “This is a decision my wife Jan and I made together after much discussion about how we can best address her health, which is the most important priority in our lives.”

Details on the services are still unknown but are scheduled to be held at Kent R. Hance Chapel at Texas Tech University, according to the Lubbock Avalanche-Journal.