Reunion Booklet

Widefield High School Class of 1966 50-year Reunion JULY 2016

Prepared and Edited by Donnie Martinez.

Known at WHS by stepfather’s surname Collier

Martinez is my birth certificate and legal surname

a/k/a Butch, family nickname since childhood

a/k/a Don, presumably the adult version of Donnie

a/k/a Primo (Cousin) to dozens of my Martinez cousins.

I don’t care what people call me, just call me.

WHSclass1966@Yahoo.com

 

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PHOTO

In the photo is our classmate Lydia Romero Fine with the banner that one of her business customers made and donated to the reunion. With the words “Welcome Class of 1966, 50th Reunion” in huge letters, the colorful banner was prominently displayed throughout the reunion’s two events – one at Fargo’s Restaurant and the other at the park pavilion. Lydia served on the committee of classmates who volunteered their time to organize the 50-year reunion. Photo was taken by our classmate Donna Wiltgen Mills.

 

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OPENING WORDS from GILLIE WALKER

 Hi dear classmates!

I have to confess right off that I'm the reason Donnie's Update has been so delayed. He's been showing unbelievable amounts of patience in his polite and funny proddings at me to start writing. But you must know that I have a perfectly valid and delightful excuse: as soon as the reunion finished, I raced home, started packing and organizing and flew to St. Croix, USVI, for a visit with Twila. And, oh, what fun we had! …well, some of us had more fun than others since the first thing Twila did was break her baby toe...but that's her story to tell.

 30 years ago, almost to the date, we held our 20th reunion. Twila attended and invited me to see her beautiful island. [Don't worry, I'm telling the short version of this story. :) I immediately went there for a visit, loved it, accepted a job at Twila's amazing business called Java Wraps, and moved there. I lived there for a year, loved the dear island and vowed I'd return. I know you must be guessing correctly...I'm doing it again! I'm going to sell everything I own and move there...beautiful blue Caribbean, here I come! 

 Ok, enough about me (although, in view of my exciting life-changing and upcoming events, I'm having difficulty getting too worked up about the reunion.) It was a sweet, low-key event. The 45th was a rousing, rock and roll extravaganza and the 50th was a sweet, low-key event (so sweet and low-key that I can hardly come up with different words to describe it.) Probably about a quarter of our class attended and that smaller number of people allowed us to thoroughly mingle and visit with almost everyone there. I'm not a good mingler and was delighted to watch and learn from the pro – Twila! Someone I was standing next to was watching her with me and said, "She should run for President!" So, it was fun and all the people who were there were exactly the right people to be there. I think we should all lean on Warren Knight to keep his band in practice, though, so we can have another rock and roll extravaganza next time. Think of it this way: it'll be a wonderful incentive to stay in shape so we can all dance our tail feathers off.

 Love and hugs to all!

:) Gillie

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 WHO WAS THERE. Although there were about 60 classmates who specifically expressed interest in the months leading up to the event, 20 of them did not actually register after all due to having other plans or having issues related to health and finances. There were 36 classmates who attended the main event on Saturday, and two additional classmates (Becky Estes Grigg and Glen Kruse) joined the other 36 classmates at the Friday social event. Two additional classmates (Anne Lively Baldwin and Steve Cox) registered, but cancelled. Almost all classmates brought one guest, so that brought the total attendees to about 75 people. For the names of the 36 classmates who attended the main event, see the group photo’s caption on our class website.

 NON-1966 WHS graduates who joined us were: Lyle Wikner (Class of 1965); Dave Kinsfater (Class of 1965); Sharon Pearson Kruse (Class of 1965); Teresita “Terry” Anteola Brown (Class of 1967)Susan Chapman Anteola (Class of 1967); Vicky Hathaway Otey (Class of 1968); Carol Knight (Class of 1968); Darla Salmon Petty (Class of 1969); Jim Kueck (Class of 1969).

 WHERE TO FIND PHOTOS.  For the most updated information about numerous photos taken by our classmate Gary Storm and others, keep checking back on the class website at www.1966whs.com

 LONGEST DISTANCE to get to the REUNION. Marie “Mimi” George Torreano traveled the longest distance (3,300 miles) to get to the reunion, with Judy Ames Bradford coming in second (3,100 miles) and Twila Wilson coming in third (2,800 miles). Richard Otto drove the longest distance (1,400 miles round trip).

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 PHOTO 

In the photo is Shirley Guinta Tafoya. The photo is courtesy of our classmate Donna Wiltgen Mills.

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 POST-REUNION FEEDBACK

 I had a great time at the reunion. Seeing some people that I hadn't seen since high school was an added treat. The picnic was very nice and was so great to sit and catch with people I hadn't talk with in quite a while. My daughter, Michelle, really enjoyed herself. I had asked her if she was bored and she said, "No, Mom, you went to school with a lot of very interesting people." She liked listening to everyone stand and tell about their lives. Made me feel good!! I hope everyone else enjoyed it and want to get together again!

-- Shirley (Guinta) Tafoya                         

 [Editor’s note: Shirley helped to organize four (4) of our past reunions – 1976, 1986, 1996, 2006. She and her husband Danny Tafoya are fabulous dancers.]


I was sorry the reunion group was so small, but had a great time re-connecting with the classmates who were there. Take care and keep those newsletters coming, Donnie!

-- Patti Kueck Daniel

 

It was wonderful to see everyone. I really enjoyed the time at Fargo’s as well as the picnic. A big “Thank You” to all on the committee that did the planning.

-- Glenda Windle Armstrong

 

I didn't take any pictures because I was too busy talking! I thought the reunion was a great success. I want to thank the reunion committee for their hard work and all of you that attended for contributing to making our 50th reunion a great time. It was a lot of fun visiting with everyone.
-- Linda Nolin Weber

 

I enjoyed seeing classmates so much. Especially Donnie and Bruce. It was worth the trip from Hawaii. Donnie, you still have the moves!!!!

-- Marie “Mimi” George Torreano

 

Nothing to say about the reunion, other than to say I had a great time. Many thanks to everyone who put it together. Good to see you!

-- Mary Ashley Fuchsman

 

Editor’s note:  For more feedback on the reunion, see elsewhere in this booklet for longer pieces written by classmates who attended the event.

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 A FEW WORDS from Marciano Anteola

 Living in Houston, it was suggested that I attend my 50th high school class reunion with my wife Susan Chapman Anteola (WHS Class of 1967). I called my good friend and old classmate Richard (Rick) Otto living in Plano, TX, to see if he wanted to attend. He said OK and the adventure began. Susan and I flew into Colorado Springs and Rick drove for eleven hours. We stayed in the same hotel area. My sister Terry, her husband Dick, Rick Otto, Susan and I went to the meet and greet at Fargo’s Pizza. Going upstairs, it was a bit overwhelming due to the tight quarters and lots of people crowding around the pathways. However, I got accustomed to the noise and closeness as the evening wore on. Trying to talk and recognizing people were challenging. Some of the faces were familiar and some were not – thanks for the name tags. I knew and understood that it's been 50 years or more since I've seen or talked to some of my classmates. Talking and interacting with some my old friends brought back fond memories going back to grade school at North Security Elementary and my last two years at Widefield High School, i.e. Ron Petty, Donnie Martinez, Bruce McAlexander, Paul Snell, Bruce Brian, Mike Adragna, and many more. It was great remembering, if one can remember that far back. Being there at Fargo’s was fun and exciting. The pizza, beer, soda, and conversation broke the ice.

The next day was Saturday and a beautiful day it was for a class picnic at Metcalf Park in Fountain. It was impressive that we all gathered in this large gazebo with tables and chairs enough to hold 60-70 people. Equally impressive was the large turnout of former classmates being there. That meant a few more people to meet, i.e. Steve Rhodes, Mary Ashley, Gary Storm, Twila Wilson, and many more just to name a few. The catered food and drinks hit the spot. It was good. After lunch and sitting at our tables, we each introduced ourselves and our spouses. This was fun because we got to listen, learn and know more about each other. Some introductions were short and to the point, while some people had tremendous events in their lives that had to be told. Overall, each one was very interesting to hear. I enjoyed the picnic and I especially liked how Donnie and Bruce still have the dance moves when Warren turned on the music.

I want to thank the reunion committee and everyone involved for having a well-planned event and bringing our class of 1966 together. This was my first reunion and hopefully not my last.

I also want to thank my sister Terry Anteola Brown (WHS Class of 1967) and my wife for insisting that I attend my reunion. It surely was awesome. Also, thank you, Richard Otto, for attending. It reminds me of the time 50 years ago when we drove to Los Angeles after our graduation and also had a blast! We were only 18.

 [Editor’s note:  It wasn’t until Marciano told me at the reunion that I did not recall that his family left Security between grade school and high school when his military father got stationed elsewhere. My memories of Marciano and his sister Teresita “Terry” Anteola always were so vivid and fond in my mind that it seemed to me like they were always with us for all of those childhood and teen years.]

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 A FEW WORDS from Ed Buenger

 It was certainly good to see everyone at the reunion. I would like to have visited with all. Much thanks to the volunteers for organizing the event. Seriously, if anyone is up this way [Fort Collins] and has the time, please look me up. It would be great to catch up. Synopsis of my life since high school: Joined the Air Force on July 19, 1967; stationed at Lowry AFB for tech. training in intelligence operations, then to Strategic Air Command headquarters at Offutt AFB, Nebraska; Direct Air Support Center at Hue Phu Bai, Vietnam, from Dec. 16, 1968 to Dec. 16, 1969; back to Offutt AFB; honorably discharged July 19, 1971, as Staff Sergeant.Attended Colorado State University 1971 to 1975 with a major in Biological Science. Started career with USDA-Agriculture Research Service as Physical Science Tech. in August 1976 in Fort Collins, CO, to support research of Nitrogen utilization and efficiency and Carbon cycling and sequestration, utilizing stable isotopes, in agriculture systems; retired September 2011. I am currently a "mentor" to a special-needs adult.

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 JUDY AMES BRADFORD used part of her presentation to reunion attendees to tell a story about her famous father, Sheriff Ames, who contacted many of us for violations of the law during our childhood and teen years in Security. Judy said that her father always told her that she must remember two (2) important matters if she ever got stopped by a law enforcement officer:

 (1) never cry; and (2) never tell the officer about her father being a sheriff. Upon continuing her presentation to the attendees about the time an officer stopped her while she was driving her car, Judy said she did not cry and she did not mention her father’s occupation. When the officer noticed Judy’s surname on her vehicle papers, he asked her if she was related to Sheriff Ames. Very reluctantly, Judy disclosed her father’s identity. The officer then praised Judy’s father as being the one who helped the officer to get his start in law enforcement. Judy and other reunion attendees collectively laughed when Bruce McAlexander spoke up and asked Judy if she cried when she got stopped by the officer.

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 PHOTO 

In the photo is our classmate Judy Ames Bradford, who was with many of us from grade school through high school. In addition to capturing how strikingly pretty Judy is, the photo shows her decked out in our high-school color blue (blue earrings, blue necklace charm, blue bracelet, blue blouse, blue slacks). The photo was taken by our classmate Patti Kueck Daniel.

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 A FEW WORDS from DEAN OTEY

 As with all of the reunions that the volunteers have done, it [the 50-year] was excellent. This year provided a good venue both at Fargo's and the park in Fountain along with perfect weather to share in a great time to see a few of our fellow classmates. Fifty years have flown by with lots of fun (and sometime sad) things to share and even with two events, not quite enough time to catch up. My only disappointment was that fewer showed up than at previous reunions, which means there were some sorely missed classmates that it would have been good to see. That aside, my wife Vicky and I had a great time doing some reminiscing but mostly just enjoying the here and now of where people are, what they are doing and what lies ahead! Twila said something I certainly could identify with and hopefully even those not there could as well: our years together in high school were great years that helped to prepare us for life's challenges and successes. Great years then and even with the ups and downs that 50 years bring a hopeful future for us all. I hope to see more of you in the years ahead.

 [Editor’s note:  During his presentation at the event, Dean noted that the most-often question posed to him by reunion attendees related to his twin sister Diane. He said she is doing fine despite being unable to attend the event. The Otey twins were with many of us from grade school through high school. Dean’s wife Vicky Hathaway Otey graduated in the WHS Class of 1968. Having married on August 1, 1970, Dean and Vicky celebrated their 46- year anniversary in August 2016.]

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 A FEW WORDS from the Editor (Donnie)

 “NO MORE REUNIONS after the 50th” are the words that are frequently uttered to me by numerous people who have attended their respective 50-year school reunions here in Denver, where I have lived since 1975. It is as though a person’s 50-year school reunion represents some type of finality, with nothing lying ahead.

 If our classmate Ron Petty has his way, there will be more future gatherings from time to time. “It will be along the lines of people getting together to visit while having a meal at a restaurant,” said Ron, who spearheaded and tended to the details of organizing our recent 50-year reunion in July 2016. When I shook his hand at the reunion and praised him for the major role he played in organizing the reunion, Ron’s longtime modesty kicked in upon telling me that a “committee” of people did all the work. People who helped with tasks related to the reunion acknowledge the crucial role that Ron played over the short five-month planning period leading up to the event.

 Ron got a chuckle out of my childhood memory upon first meeting him and Suzie Guinn in grade school. [Although Suzie went by her stepdad’s surname Guinn, we knew her by her legal surname Gates in high school.] I told him that I went home and told my mother in Spanish, “Mama, en la escuela hay un muchacho que es pelirojo y hay una muchacha que es peliroja.” [Mom, in school there is a boy who is a redhead and there is a girl who is a redhead.] Ronnie continued chuckling when I told him that my mother replied, “No me digas eso. Eres embustero.” [Don’t tell me that. You're a fibber.] Having been exposed to only brown-haired people in the Chicano district of Colorado Springs where we lived before moving to Security, my mother and I were fascinated to see redheads in Security. Ronnie then told me about the time he and his wife Darla lived in Texas when their daughter was a young child who had light blonde hair. He said whenever Latinos saw their daughter, they wanted to touch her hair because they said it meant “buena suerte” (good luck) to them.

Many thanks to Paul Snell for kindly giving me a ride to and from the reunion. He is a great conversationalist with whom I always enjoy our long chats. We returned to Denver “in class” in his 2006 Corvette, which is a very smooth-riding vehicle that can go 200 mph maximum. Fortunately, Paul didn’t drive the maximum speed.

 At the reunion, I had fun showing our classmate Marie George Torreano how to do the late 1950s and early 1960s dance called the Cha-Cha. To her friends and family Marie has been known as Mimi, the family nickname that her mother always called her in the 1950s and 1960s. Mimi’s husband, Mark Torreano, captured the fun in a video. Bruce McAlexander is briefly shown in the video doing the Cha-Cha as he and I both have known how to do the Cha-Cha since the 1950s. To watch the one-minute video, click the following link: 

https://youtu.be/MzQFt0RKEuc

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TWILA WILSON used a big part of her presentation to reunion attendees to talk about her childhood and teen years’ exposure to Security’s ethnic and cultural diversity of families, many of whom had military fathers who were married to women from ethnic backgrounds all over the world. She attributed her exposure to that ethnic diversity as the “foundation” of who she became as a person in adult years. Noting that her favorite high-school teacher was Margaret Stiehm who taught Home Economics, Twila cited the many skills she learned from Mrs. Stiehm as the most influential in Twila’s later career as a professional designer of textiles/clothing and professional interior designer. Twila also noted that the skills she acquired as our Class President (from 9th grade through 12th grade) were used in her adult years through the present.

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 PHOTO

In the photo are Gillie Walker; Rich Otto; Twila Wilson; Bruce McAlexander; Steve Rhodes;Marcia Hagans Allin. Photo was taken by our classmate Patti Kueck Daniel.

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 A FEW WORDS from Steve Rhodes

 When you tell friends and neighbors that you are going to your 50th high school reunion, you get reactions that range from “Oh, I would never do that” to “I went to mine and it was a blast.”

 Having been away from Colorado for over 45 years, and thus not running into folks during normal life activities, I was not sure what to expect.

 Well, I now fall into the latter category, “I went to mine and it was a blast!” 

 On Saturday it was great to hear a little about what each person has been doing since graduation and to experience the upbeat opportunity to talk with everyone. From reconnecting with your first date (who you never forget) – to talking to guys you played ball with – to talking with folks whose names you remember but were never close – to talking with classmates you don’t remember – every conversation at our Saturday picnic was personal and memorable. 

The only thing that would have made the reunion better would have been the attendance of some old friends I didn’t get to see – hopefully they will come to our next reunion.

 Again, I want to thank everyone who attended for his or her warmth and making me, and especially my wife Ann, feel at home. I also want to again thank everyone on the organizing committee for all of the great work they did making this a memorable event. Please keep in touch and let Ann and I know the plans for the next reunion.

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 A FEW WORDS from DOUG ALLEN

 For the past several years I had looked forward to our 50th reunion with great anticipation. To me there was something magical about 50.  

 I got to Fargo's right on time Friday evening and headed for the second floor. These days I get around most of the time in a wheelchair. Fargo's does not have an elevator. Ron Petty, Warren Knight and two other classmates grabbed my chair, with me in it, and carried me upstairs. I said hello to so many senior citizens. Wait a second!! All of these old people were kids with whom I went to high school.  

 My favorite story from Friday evening happened when I was sitting at a table with Lydia Romero and Pam Rains Shuman. Mary Ashley walked up looking for a place to sit down. As Mary approached the table, she looked around and asked if we were spouses of WHS grads. What really hurt is that Mary and I attended the Winter Ball together when we were sophomores back in the day. We all chuckled as we reintroduced ourselves.  

 The oddest thing, to me, was when Twila Wilson came in. Right away, Twila wanted to know why I was in a wheelchair. As I went through my story, a thought kept swirling thru my head, "Twila's not as tall as she used to be." Of course she's the same height as she was when we roamed the halls of WHS. Over the past 50 years I had outgrown Twila by several inches. 

 As I watched Steve Rhodes work the room I thought to myself, "Damn he looks as good and fit as the day we walked the stage at Foster Stadium."

 And then it was time to leave. Another four classmates carried me back down the stairs. I smiled all the way home as I connected today's faces with yesterday's memories.

 On Saturday, we met for our class picnic at Metcalf Park in Fountain. I noted a great number of our classmates commented that, while we were at WHS, they never spent much of any time in Fountain. 

 As I arrived at the park, I was lucky enough that Mike Adragna and his wife Sandy arrived at the same time.  Guess who got drafted to get my wheelchair out of the car. Yes, Mike and Sandy got my gear and off we went to see who was at the park. 

 I had an opportunity to visit with Steve Rhodes. Like me, and no doubt lots of others, Steve has his health stories. I'll let him share those if he chooses to do so. 

 As I looked across the pavilion we were in, it was so natural to see Candy and Joy hooked at the hip visiting and laughing just like back in the early 1960s. Candy Burdell and Joy Woods. Sorry I don't know their new last names. Honestly, neither of those two ladies has changed a bit, so it was very easy to remember names.  

 The picnic lunch was great.  The chicken was perfect, as was the pulled pork. For a moment as I was eating, I thought I was back in North Carolina. It was that good.

 Ron Petty suggested we move around by table and introduce, reintroduce ourselves. It seems like we've moved all over the country since graduation. One thing in particular I noticed was the large number of us who have been married to the same person for 40 years or longer. Congratulations are in order.

 All in all, it was a spectacular weekend catching up with good friends and classmates. My thanks to the entire Reunion Committee. You guys did an outstanding job, spectacular, marvelous, what other superlatives I can find. Seriously, thank you!

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 PAM RAINS SHUMAN used part of her presentation to reunion attendees to tell a very touching story about an occasion many years ago when her husband was physically incapable of accompanying Pam on a long-distance trip from Texas where they lived to visit their son, who lived in a different state in the South. While our classmates Maryellen Brada Manuszak and Roy Manuszak were on their own vacation trip driving from Colorado to the East Coast, they stopped by to visit Pam and her husband in Texas. Holding back tears upon telling the story to reunion attendees, Pam described Maryellen and Roy making the kind offer to use their vehicle to transport Pam and her husband so that they could make the trip to visit their son. They loaded Pam’s husband in the Manuszak vehicle and off they went to a Southern state destination that was not originally on the Manuszaks’ vacation itinerary. Pam’s story spoke volumes about the character and dedication of Maryellen and Roy. Pam and Maryellen were with many of us all the way from grade school through high school in Security.

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 PHOTO

In the photo are Barbara Garrison and Maryellen Brada Manuszak

Photo was taken by our classmate Donna Wiltgen Mills.

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 A LIFETIME of FRIENDSHIP                

 However people define the word “legends” in these modern times, Barbara and Maryellen clearly fit the bill as legends among our many classmates who were with many of us all the way from grade school through high school in Security. Barbara and Maryellen remained friends after high school, and they remain friends to this very day. Maryellen served on the committee of classmates who volunteered their time to organize the 50-year reunion, and in her role as co-treasurer she handled all details related to the registrations and finances for the event. Maryellen has been married to our classmate Roy Manuszak for more than 40 years. Barbara flew all the way from Pennsylvania to be with everyone at the historic 50-year reunion.

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 LAST but certainly not least, REFLECTIONS by Bruce McAlexander

 At these reunions it seems like I always find out someone was there that I didn’t know was there and wish I had known so I could have talked with them. Ron Petty said it was Steve Rhodes’ suggestion for everyone to stand and say something at the event at Metcalf Park. That was a good thing to do and with my eyesight the way it is, I heard a “little history” from everyone. I hadn’t seen some people in decades such as Richard Hoffman, Marie George, and Becky Estes. It was good to see the hugging, hear the laughter and see those I actually played with as a kid on Rose Drive, such as Marciano Anteola and his sister Teresita. So many people with so many memories and trying to dance just one more time with some of my dance partners from the past always brings joy to me. I could go on and on about the people who were there and the stories, but I want to focus on something else – those who were not there.                         

 As many of you know, my dad died not too long ago and my mom died three years ago. Mom and dad chose Security since they believed Colorado Springs was too big of a town in 1956 to have their kids grow up in. They had graduated from classes that ranged in classmates from 10 students to maybe 20 students. Security fit the bill of a small town about five miles from the “city.”

 Many of our parents had just come through World War II ten years earlier and some had been in the “Korean Conflict” just three or four years earlier. Many of our parents were still in the military and dealing day to day with the “Cold War” that had the threat of nuclear war and communism. I was outside playing usually daily with my friends, sledding down Rose Drive, going to school, riding my bike with friends out on Bradley Road, and watching TV and my older sister. It wasn’t too long before we were in our separate grade schools, of which North Security Elementary was primarily mine.

I saw Ron Petty and Warren Knight “star” in the children’s play Pinocchio. I had many of the same classmates from 3rd grade to 6th grades before going off to Sproul Junior High when we were in the middle of 7th grade. Most of us lived in the same neighborhood (the north end of Security), which had the classmates I ran with when not in school. You might not have been related by blood, but many of you became not only friends, but more like cousins or brothers or sisters. You still are. I still dream sometimes with some of you in my dreams. You girls still look good.

 When we got to junior high, we started to know some who went to South and Widefield elementary schools. The girls were checking out the new boys and the boys were checking out the new girls. With the military, many times our friends and classmates would leave for two or three years with their parents being transferred, but then they would show back up and often we just picked up where we had left off all the way through high school.

 Maybe you are all wondering where I am going with this. Please bear with me. Being on the committee for the reunions the last few years, I have really enjoyed getting to know some of my classmates better. Most of us were not in the same cliques in school. Marcia Hagans and I took Latin together, so some of us who wore togas were quite familiar with each other. I wasn’t in the school band, but Paul Snell was, along with Maryellen Brada, Wanda Floyd, Debbie Armknecht, Andy Armstrong, and Pam Rains among others. When in town, Paul, Maryellen, and Pam have a common bond, but I have really enjoyed getting to know them as friends and hear about their drinking parties on the bus to concerts. Lydia Romeo is nice enough to sit between Ron Petty and me so that I do not get picked on or have to hear Ron’s stories that still bring him great laughter. Daryl Kuiper and Warren still like wearing their slide rules and I am glad I have an excuse with my eyesight not to try using one, but I find their stories rather entertaining as well. Gillie Walker keeps us in line, while Bruce Brian and Linda Nolin deal with us emotionally and physically. Donnie Collier, Ronnie Petty, and I are still watching each other to try to figure out who is Moe, Larry, or Curly among the Three Stooges. I was so delighted to see Mary Ashley and Marie George at our reunion, even though Mary was there in high school for one of Ronnie Petty’s fond memories of Bruce.

Again, I will say I am trying to say something despite all of this writing. Here it goes. Beth Plana, where are you? You were my toughest competition in the 5th grade when Mrs. Herbert had us doing math problems on the chalkboard. You were such a nice person. Dean Otey, it was nice seeing you and your wife Vicky. I needed a friend in 4th grade and you were one, but then you had to go to Widefield Elementary School for 5th grade. When you rejoined me in Mrs. Townsley’s class in 6th grade, you once asked me, “What happened to you, Bruce, you were one of the smart kids in 4th grade?” Mickey Martin, you were a good friend in high school and after we first got out of college. You were actually more sarcastic than I was. I would love to see you again. Dave Lowe, taking Latin with me and cheating off my papers were not too wise because John Paden would have been a wiser choice. You were a good friend, Dave, and you made me laugh often. John Paden, did you become a doctor? I remember you playing football in junior high and you were good because nobody could see you until you popped through the line. Dave Theiss, I bet you are sad about Bill Cosby. You brought his albums to the lunch room and played them in our senior year while we ate. You also loved the Beach Boys. I was not an athlete or in your group, but I have enjoyed listening to your stories when given the chance. Tom Nigbur, it was exciting to watch you at C.U. until you blew your knee out. I tried tackling you once in junior high and haven’t forgotten it. That was when I realized my NFL career was over. Dave Larsen, you were such a help to me in Mr. Jorgenson’s advance biology class when we got to the chemistry. John Griffith did the same for me in Mr. Bartell’s geometry class and I still appreciate it. Debbie Armknecht, you and Andy still can put a smile on my face which is a challenge at this stage. Robert Abeyta, are you still in Colorado Springs? I liked the time I spent with you in junior high. Carla Aber: Twila and I were talking at the reunion about how we liked when you sang. You had a folk singing sound like Judy Collins. I liked your brother Stan and wish he hadn’t died so young. Skip Norcross, you were one of the nicest guys in junior high. Junior Potter, it was fun going with your family to the wilderness to help build your mountain cabin in Monument. Danny Diedrich, was it tough having your mom as an English teacher? It could have been worse and she could have been a gym teacher like Mr. Marvin or Mr. Gorham and had to pull down your white gym shorts to see if you had on your jockey strap. Marty Dostal and Dennis O’Rourke were two buddies from grade school through high school and beyond. I remember watching them on the playground at North Security Elementary School having a fistfight and then a few days later were back to being “best buddies.” Their fights were violent enough that it scared me. Eddie Nickum, you and Marty had the best laughs and I could not help but laugh with you even if I had no clue why. Eddie, I so wish you would be at one of these reunions. I was so sorry to hear about your wife and our classmate Angie Goodwin dying a few years ago. I believe she was in the school band. I liked hanging out with both of you, Eddie and Angie, in our senior year. Denise Clark, Roxann Mann, Dean Pinner, Alan Pinder, Carol Krause, Vicki Resley, Tony Valencia, Rhoda Brunz, Cheryl Minehart, Roger Aulabaugh, Tom Fay, Stella Romero, Carolyn Simpson, Terry Chase, Judy Brown, Mickie Wright, Sandy Magnum, Rod Gilliland, Preston Coulter, Chuck Johnson, Dane McCaffrey, Mike Herman, Les Herman, Terry Chambers, Lynn Phipps my prom date, Meg Hulsey, Dave Smedsrud, Mike Higbee – where are all of you? I miss you all and have so many good memories. I hope all is well with you who did not come to the reunion.

 At college in Boulder I got to know some classmates, such as Daryl Kuiper and Barry Thompson, much better. It was nice to walk around a big campus and run into Dave Larsen, Barry Buttermore and, of course, Warren Knight. I liked it better when I ran into Warren’s sister Donna, though. In college it was difficult not to get homesick. It was not just because of my family, if you haven’t figured that out. Our reunions are a family reunion, like it or not. My only regret is that I didn’t have more “kissin’ cousins.”

I miss my friends who have died – Larry Cordova, Gary Emrich, Larry Anglesley (who was so shy). I still get sad thinking of Tommy Shepard dying so young. He had Barbara Billingsley as a girlfriend in 5th grade and I had the good fortune of riding my bike with him to go to her house when she lived in the keyhole part of the street across from Phil Martin. Twila did a great Alley-Oop character at Phil Martin’s birthday party. Joe Good, you died and there were a lot of us guys who liked you and your smile. The girls always seemed to like you and Ron Skaggs. I had trouble getting my sisters to like me. Della Romero, another classmate who died too soon, always made me laugh. Nan Manning, who died three years ago, was my first crush in Mr. Walker’s third-grade class. Brad Douglas, who died two years ago, was another very nice person.

 It was our 50-year reunion and I know many people who had previous commitments, including Rhonda Richards and Barbara Billingsley, and some of you did not come due to health reasons or financial reasons. Pete Spiers almost got me kicked off National Honor Society with his talent of making a human passing-gas sound by putting his hand under his arm pit, but I forgive him and now he can attend. The reality is that Mrs. Adams (faculty sponsor of National Honor Society) didn’t much like me. Maybe you girls can help me after all these years understand why. You do not have to help, Linda.

To this day whenever I’m being driven past streets at the north end of Security, I remember where my friends lived. Larry Shelton and Tommy Shepard lived side by side on Hallam. Davie Drive was a tough street with Ron Petty, Jerry Moyers, Linda Murphy, Judy Ames, Don Collier, Gary Emrich, Warren Everingham, and Mickey Martin living so close to each other. Doris Drive had a bunch of you hanging out along with Leta Drive and then there was Rose Drive, where I lived. You are probably wondering if Bruce ever had a life!

What I have been trying to say is that I was so lucky to have you as friends and classmates in my life. Because of all of you, my childhood was helped in so many ways. You gave me a hope and joy despite what was happening in the world, and I am still so thankful for you. I wish I could have had one more chance to spend time with you all and I am glad for those I did. God bless you all.

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