Submitted by Bob Golseth as he rememered it from Milt Lynnes' first telling
of this story--- " Bob Golseth's family first
moved to Elmhurst while we were all in sixth grade. On Bob's first day at Hawthorne Elementary School, Mrs. Brobst, our sixth grade teacher, asked Bruce Downey
to introduce Bob to the class and show him to his seat. Well everybody knew that Bruce had always been the biggest
kid in our class, so when Bruce rose from his desk and strode up to the front of the room to greet Bob, a collective
gasp rolled up and down the aisles---How could this be ? Bob Golseth was bigger than Bruce Downey ! "
Editor's note: To see for yourself just how big Bob Golseth
was in relation to Bruce Downey back in those days, take a look at the Hawthorne Jr. Hi 8th grade 'Heavyweight" Basketball
Team picture at "Our York52 Homepage."
Submitted by Bruce Downey--- "We were in the Food Management Dining Room for the York
tour, eating a lunch prepared and served by York students, all of whom were appropriately dressed for the occasion.
There were actually two groups of us, so we were only half of the York Class of 1952 contingent when in walked Caroline Johnson
Jackson. Caroline lives in California and was staying at her brother's house in Wheaton, IL. Caroline was drenched.
It had been raining, quite heavily most of the morning. Caroline had driven in from Wheaton and got lost in trying
to find York, so she got caught in the worst of the weather because she had to park her car quite a ways away from the school
and had no umbrella. She was obviously quite miserable in all her wet clothes. Well, earlier that day, as our
two groups boarded the school buses to go from the hotel to York High School for the luncheon and tour, I had
on a light-weight cotton pull-over shirt/sweater over my short sleeved sports shirt. (You can see where this
story is going, can't you). But I had to shed that light weight shirt/sweater on the bus because of the oppressive
humidity that had built up before we ever pulled away and got the air conditioning going. So there I was with
an extra "shirt" that I knew I would then have to carry around the rest of the day. I wasn't looking forward
to keeping track of that extra shirt one bit. So, when I saw that Caroline was in need, I pulled my extra shirt out
from underneath the table where I was sitting, held it up, got Caroline's attention, and told her to take her top off and
put mine on. She said, "Right here ?" and the place exploded with laughter. Being the gentlemen that I am, I then
said "No, go find a ladies room and do it." And so she did, and when she came back into the lunchroom I received a great
big hug for my gallantry.
The following item was sent by Lynn Juul Thompson to Bruce Downey as a post-reunion
story. Lynn sensed that, like herself, I too might also be a "KEEPER" because of my work on this website. And if
you've gotten this far into this website, read on, because you too are probably a "KEEPER...".
things you keep. Like good teeth, warm coats, bald husbands . . . They're good for you, reliable and practical and so sublime
that to throw them away would make the garbage man a thief. So you hang on, because something old is sometimes better than
something new, and things you know are often better than the unknown.
These are my thoughts; they make me sound old, old and tame, and dull at a time when everybody else is risky and racy
and flashing all that's new and improved in their lives. Whether its new careers, new cars, new bodies, or new spouses, the world is dizzy with trade-ins. I could keep track, but I don't think
I want to.
I grew up in the mid to late forties with practical parents - a mother, God bless her, who washed aluminum
foil after she cooked in it, then reused it. A father who was happier getting old shoes fixed than buying new ones.
They weren't poor, my parents, they were just satisfied. Their marriage was good, their dreams focused. Their best friends
lived barely a wave away. I can see them now, Dad in trousers and tee shirt and Mom in a housedress - lawn
mower in his hand, dishtowel in hers. They always found time for fixing things - a curtain rod, the kitchen
radio, screen door, the oven door, the hem in a dress.
Things you keep. It was a way of life, and sometimes it made me crazy. All that re-fixing, re-heating, re-newing,
I wanted just once to be wasteful. Waste meant affluence. Throwing things away meant there'd always be more.
But then my father died, and on that clear autumn night, in the chill of the hospital room,
I was struck with the pain of learning that sometimes there isn't any 'more.' Sometimes
what you care about most gets all used up and goes away . . . never to return.
So, while you have it, it's best to love it and
care for it and fix it when it's broken and heal it when it's sick. That's true for marriage and old cars and
children with bad report cards and dogs with bad hips and aging parents. You keep them because they're worth it - because you're worth it.
Some things you keep. Like a
best friend that moved away or a classmate you grew up with. There are just some things that
make life important...certain people you know are special...and you
KEEP them close! "
Submitted by Bruce Downey as he recalls this incident while talking with
Lloyd Serfling at the Saturday evening event at Our 50th Reunion--- Editor's
Note: The following is a true story, but to protect the innocent, the real name of our classmate, identified
herein simply as "Sallie Mae," has been withheld. "At the informal
gathering of classmates on Friday evening, I (i.e., Bruce Downey) started talking with "Sallie Mae". Sallie still lives
in a nearby Chicago suburb. Looking back to that evening, there was nothing particularly notable about our conversation
or about Sallie's demeanor. Then, the next evening at the main event on Saturday night I had just been
to the men's room and was coming out when I met Lloyd Serfling going in. So we stopped and talked a bit...mostly about
Ernie Olds, when someone rushed up and said, " Sallie's out in the parking lot looking for her car ! " Lloyd cut short
our conversation to begin a hurried search for Sallie when I asked Lloyd the obvious question, " Well, what's so
unusual about that ? " And as he was scurrying off toward the parking lot, Lloyd turned around and said, "Sallie
Submitted by the one designated as "least changed in 50 years"---
"I was on the way home that Sunday morning, the final day of the reunion. I was running low on gas, so I
pulled off the Interstate somewhere in Indiana. You know how the gas pumps are set up---there's an island, with pumps
facing both directions. So you're only a couple of feet away from another car facing the opposite direction. So
there we were, both standing there---me on one side and this lady on the other...looking at one another every once in
awhile while our gas pumps were filling our tanks. Finally, I broke the silence and asked her which way she was
headed. She told me briefly where she had been and where she was going. Then after a slight pause, she looked
up again and said, "How about you ?" "Well," I said, " I've just been to my 50th High School Reunion and I'm heading
back home to Virginia." To which she laughingly responded, " Well, you sure don't look old enough to
be coming from a 50th of anything ! " To which I replied, " You know, that's interesting that you should say
that because I just won an award at our reunion for being the classmate who had changed the least over the intervening
50 years ! We both laughed, finished pumping our gas, and went our separate ways. "
Submitted by Bruce Downey---
I was out in the
hallway at one point at our Saturday night function when Irene Morgan Bergmann approached me. She wanted to talk
to me about Skye---my granddaughter, whose photo is at the left and again below, right. Irene simply wanted to tell
me that "she just couldn't get over what a cutie Skye is," adding that " someday we would all be hearing about
Skye again." I thanked Irene for her kind words, volunteering that Skye is quite athletic, taking swimming, tennis,
and figure skating lessons at the tender age of only six. I went on to suggest that if we ever do
hear from Skye again, that her best chance would be tennis. While Skye's mother is quite a good tennis player in her
own right, it is Skye's maternal grandmother who in her day was the Pennsylvania state champion amateur tennis player.
So maybe, just maybe, Skye will make a name for herself someday in the tennis world. We'll see.
And then this post-reunion item from Jerry Wheeler....it's a poem about
High School Reunions...how people change over the years and how their reunions change too...
"Every ten years, as summertime nears,
An announcement arrives in the mail,
is planned; it'll be really grand;
Make plans to attend without fail.'
never forget the first time we met;
We tried so hard to impress.
We drove fancy cars, smoked big cigars,
our most elegant dress.
was quite an affair; the whole class was there.
It was held at a fancy hotel.
We wined and we dined and we acted refined,
And everyone thought it was swell.
men all conversed about who had been first
To achieve great fortune and fame.
Meanwhile, their spouses described their
And how beautiful their children became.
homecoming queen, who once had been lean,
Now weighed in at one-ninety-six.
The jocks who were there had all lost their
And the cheerleaders could no more do kicks.
one had heard about the class nerd
Who'd guided a spacecraft to the moon;
Or poor little Jane, who'd always been plain;
She married a shipping tycoon.
boy we'd decreed 'most apt to succeed'
Was serving ten years in the pen,
While the one voted 'least' now was a priest;
Shows you can be wrong now and then.
awarded a prize to one of the guys
Who seemed to have aged the least.
Another was given to the grad who had driven
The farthest to attend the feast.
took a class picture, a curious mixture
Of beehives, crew cuts and wide ties.
Tall, short or skinny, the style was
You never saw so many thighs.
our next get-together, no one cared whether
They impressed their classmates or not.
The mood was informal, a whole
lot more normal;
By this time we'd all gone to pot.
was held out-of-doors, at the lake shores;
We ate hamburgers, coleslaw and beans.
Then most of us lay around in the
In our comfortable T-shirts and jeans.
the fortieth year, it was abundantly clear,
We were definitely over the hill.
Those who weren't dead had to crawl out
And be home in time for their pill.
now I can't wait; they've just set the date;
Our fiftieth is coming, I'm told.
It should be a ball, they've rented
At the Shady Rest Home for the old.
have been made on my hearing aid;
My pacemaker's been turned up on high.
My wheelchair is oiled, my teeth have been
And I've bought a new wig and glass eye.
feeling quite hearty, I'm ready to party;
I'll dance 'til the dawn's early light.
It'll be lots of fun; I just hope
Other person who gets there that night."