Don Davis's Reunion Review
What a great day we had this last Saturday!
Everyone I talked to was very pleased with the day and the only negative I heard all day was where were all the other classmates especially those in the metro area?
We started in the morning with a tour of the school. Some people even remembered the numbers of the classrooms they had been in during their years at school. Dixie Pennington Creason didn't remember some aspects of the school but we decided that she was probably to busy talking to have noticed them. There have, of course, been additions to the school in the last 45 years. They built a competitive swimming pool in 1969 (Dave Housh remembers a small pool that was there when we attended but we all know how the mind plays tricks on us over time). They have a small theater now. They remodeled the cafeteria by taking out the hall and a few rooms between the cafeteria we knew and the main entrance. Now you can look out the window in the cafeteria and see the walkway leading to the main entrance. Unfortunately they took out my locker when they took the hall out, oh well, I could never remember the combination anyway. The industrial arts room (we called it the drafting room) now has a computer on each desk so they can design on line rather than do drawings by hand and have to finish them in India ink. They closed in the area between the school and the gym, where we caught our buses, and have pop machines and snack machines. And, as Sam Keeley said, they now have a library. The old stadium has been completely torn out and they are building a new one which they hope to have completed in time the graduations ceremonies in May '06. The place looked pretty good and is home to about 1900 students. We also found out that the current principal is Tony Lake. He coached basketball at North then moved to another SM school as Associate Principal and now is back at North as the Principal. But, the most important thing about him is that he is the son-in-law of our own Max Jordan.
We returned to the cafeteria and were fortunate enough to have the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, our own Richard M. Myers, or as we know him as Dick Myers from Merriam, Kansas, speak to us about the positive attitude of our armed forces throughout the world and their desire to finish the job they are part of at this time. We learned how, Sam Keeley, Dick Myers and Bert Cooper, (and another classmate, whose name I did not hear), learned everything they knew from studying "Pogo" together.
In the afternoon, we could go to Shawnee Mission Park for a get together or to American Bandstand in Overland Park where the Hocker Grove alums were hosting a mini reunion. Thanks to Karen Kaserman Woods, the Hocker Grove party was also a success. Many of our classmates came and the highlight was having a former teacher of theirs, a Mrs. Leonard (I believe that is her name), who is 100 years old was there to greet her former students.
Saturday evening we met at Milburn Country Club for our dinner and time together. Charlie Plumb was our emcee and included an inspiring talk of his time as a POW in Viet Nam, where with God's planning, he ended up with a fellow POW, who had graduated from Shawnee Mission in 1958, as his roommate. Our own Phyllis LaFollette Bell, who has performed in Las Vegas, New York, etc. entertained us. Jim Royer was presented with his long overdue $5. for perfect attendance during his three years at North. (It was worn and tattered from age and there was no interest added.)
Thanks to Linda Sell McConwell for spear heading this reunion. Without her leadership, it would have not happened. Many of us wanted to have a reunion at this time because we are losing so many classmates but it was her desire and determination that kept it going to it's completion. Thanks to Patty Watt Bays for heading up the decorations helping keep Linda for stressing out and for greeting us everywhere we went. Thanks to Sharon Mayes Bagg, for compiling the information from the questionnaires and arranging the continental breakfast. Thanks to Pat Righter Trump, for designing and making our programs. Thanks, to Charlie, Dick, Phyllis and Bob Cathey, for making our program a success. Thanks to Ellie Dyke Mallory for the great name tags and those lovely pictures. Thanks to Mickey Masterson, Associate Principal at North for working with our committee to make the school tour happen and for providing a group of wonderful students to guide us through the school. Thanks to Larry Newlon for his tireless efforts to keep our web site current.
Thank you to those of you, who attended our 45th and to Bob Bucher, who would have been here but for the airport in Houston being shut down Friday. (We have many classmates in the coastal area but as far as we know they are ok!) I, personally, would like to thank all of you, who had such nice comments to me for my work on the e-mail and the class list. I don't do it for the thanks but it is still great to hear. Thank you again.
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