Blog 114 Classmates Speak
As ideas for the blog pop into mind, I jot them down. That is a great idea, but as usual, I cannot find the notes, which are somewhere in the clutter on my desk. I once saw a sign that stated: “If a cluttered desk is the sign of a cluttered mind, what is an empty desk the sign of?” Rest assured; my mind is cluttered.
So today, here are some comments that arrived after the recent class email asking for updates. Add to that thoughts about comics and Senior Class Day.
Let’s start with comics.
I was an avid reader back in the day. Today, I don’t bother, except for Pickles and Zits. Most are weird or just plain not amusing. But here are a few that I recall. How many more can you all dredge up from the distant past. Most but not all of these ran in the Express and the Evening News, back when San Antonio had the luxury of three dailies. Dick Tracy, Terry and the Pirates, Steve Canyon, Lil’ Abner, Pogo, Mark Trail, Brenda Starr, Rex, Morgan, Steve Roper, Mary Worth, and Apartment 3G. Blondie is still around today with the same tired jokes and should have been retired twenty years ago. Name some more for us, if you can. I left out some, so add on. Oh yeah, there was Archie. Who remembers Invisible Scarlett O’Neill?
Comments from classmates:
I have indicated that this is not a gossip sheet, but as we toddle on down the road to oblivion, maybe its okay to mention a name or two whom you have wondered about. I hope not to anger anyone with the comments that follow.
Old Aggies don’t fall far from the tree. Jerry Harris
and I spoke after his emails started bouncing back. Jerry moved from the Houston area to Bryan, Texas into what I term an “age appropriate” community. Jerry was one of the many engineers from our class. He gave up his computer when he retired, hence the email bounceback. He is in pretty good health.
Marilyn Black, aka Lynn Warren
and I chatted after several email efforts failed. Lynn is in the McKinney area near kids and grandkids. Lynn lamented that her computer is old and not functioning well. We agreed that computers are like people, and just as we get new hips and knees from time to time, computers need replacing as well.
Dorothy Darrah aka
Dot Putnam: “At almost 84 things are slowing down a bit, but am still strong and healthy, and no Covid 19. I live with my daughter and my youngest granddaughter who is 20 and in college. This keeps mind and body active. I don’t travel as much or as far as I did a couple years ago, but now I couldn’t if I wanted to. I don’t have family anymore in San Antonio (but do in Salado and Austin and Corpus) so it’s hard to get there for lunches and reunions.”
I asked Dorothy if she still goes by Dot or Dorothy now and if she and Carolyn Pope hung out at Jeff. She said, “Yes I have been Dorothy ever since college days! Never did like Dot so got rid of it when I went away to college. I moved in with my daughter a couple years ago when I could sell my condo at a good price and she was living in a 5-bedroom house with just her 20-year-old daughter, the youngest, living with her. It has worked out well with 3 generations living together. And yes, Carolyn and I were very close in high school and we still communicate at least at Christmas time. We have both been big time travelers all over the world so we share our stories! She and her husband still live in Baltimore. Our husbands were both doctors.
checked in with a greeting. A while back, Walt gave this rundown on his life after Jeff.
“My business was Advertising and Decal production – Graham Graphics. Reasonably successful, was honored to be president and twice chairman of the board of our international trade association, representing over 2,000 companies. An honor never before granted to someone out of the major metropolitan areas.
Computers eventually took over our trade and completely subdued the screen-printing aspect of it. Just think of the mainstream things we grew up with that are no longer viable.”
Margaret Reming Metcalf:
“I’m one of the ‘silent ones‘, and always was. I would be very surprised if very many classmates remember me. I’m still alive and kicking, though not very high. Retired from my position as secretary at the IRS in January 2003, and have been a “stay at home” person since then, although active in my church. Nothing special happening, just wanted to say “Hi!”.
“Hope we can make the lunch on the 8th of October. That’s my birthday—I will be there if I’m still around. I will be 84 years young. With all this going on, who knows what’s in store. We’re still around in our eighty’s so we can’t complain. See you in Oct“
Also heard from Frank Hagan, Warner Fassnidge, Ben Williams, Rich Kaufman, Bill Finch, Nathalie Grum Redding, Margaret Cater Swarts and Patsy Patterson.
Frank Hagan commented on Dick Brusenan’s passing—”I am so very sorry to learn of Dick’s passing. He was a good friend and I remember playing poker with the gang at his garage apartment. It is hard to learn of the passing of so many of our high school buddies.
Did I tell you that I talked with John Jones a while back and he seems to be doing good except for a very painful back. He lives in Houston Texas, or he did when I talked to him.
If this corona thing ever stops, I plan on visiting San Antonio one more time. If so, hope we can get together. (Frank lives in the Seattle area.
We sold the property near the river a couple of years ago to the city. From what I hear the city is building an apartment building there for low incoming folks. That is the last property I had in San Antonio. Makes me sad, had a great time there growing up with a wonderful family and friends.
Stay safe and wear your mask.
Ps !!! don’t take me off your email
Nathalie (Sue)Grum Redding
was out of touch for a while and said “Thanks for getting me back in the loop. I have spent the last hour reading “old” information– lots of obits. We really had a great class, Will try to stay current now.
checked in, as did Warner Fassnidge, who said he had spoken with Ed Davis, and Ben Williams, who said he may travel to Houston next month for a memorial. Houston is a hot spot for the virus, Ben.
asked about the class history published on line and sent along the following update on Mike Gill, who has lived in Germany for many years now..
“I talked to Michael Gill in Germany recently and aside from having Parkinson’s and bad knees and a serious retina problem he’s doing OK. They have the same corona virus over there so they mostly stay inside. Germany is more formal in their approach toward handling things so things are somewhat better there. Also he keeps gigging me about living in Trump world. It was hard for them to understand what was happening here at first. Now it seems more like a clown show that will hopefully end in the near future.”
Note: If you want to have look at the class history published five years ago, here is a website. I believe it is the second item listed. And if you are not included, send along your update to me.
moved to Oklahoma several months ago. She comments,
“Tom and I are still plugging along. Our most exciting event is going to pick up the groceries that we purchased online. We walk around our block nearly every day which is about 1/2 mile. Then we have to take a nap. We are enjoying our new home and getting to see our kids even if we visit in the garage. In fact that is our newest living and dining space when we have company. We really miss church family but at least we can attend online. We see the sermons from our church in Houston as well as here in Tulsa. I miss the hugs. Wish the end was insight instead of escalating.” (Note: Missing hugs is not all bad: a church here in San Antonio allowed hugs one Sunday, and fifty cases of Covid-19 followed.)
Margaret Cater Swarts: “Not much has changed with me since our 2014 class reunion. I am still in my house in Houston. My older daughter moved in with me in January, which proved to be a blessing when we were surprised by the pandemic and told to stay home. We walk the neighborhood most days, and I try to stay in touch with family and friends. I miss going to church but can watch the virtual service on YouTube. This too will pass though we’d all like to know when.”
Margaret and I share a Rosewood Street commonality. Until I was three, my family lived in the next block from Margaret’s family.
This has gotten a bit long, so will talk about Senior Class Day another time. With most everyone staying in, the length will keep some of you occupied and out of harm’s way. Take care till next time.
Comics……we called them “The Funnies”…..my dad would read them to me every Sunday before I could read. I still read them every day, but they are not as exciting as they used to be. I remember The Phantom, Prince Valiant, Little Orphan Annie, The Kats and Jamma Kids(sp?). The King and many more. Brenda Starr’s boyfriend, Basil, Mystery Man, and the black orchids. I think she had a daughter before I moved to Harlingen. I had monthly subscriptions to Archie and many others. Who would have thought we would literally have a telephone watch like Dick Tracey? Oh, my, the good old days. I have a Sparkle Plenty doll but she is now biracial. White face, yellow yarn hair and her rubber body has turned black. Keep the blogs coming and many thanks for keeping us up to date with so many good memories.
Thanks for the comments on the “funnies”–I recall now referring to the funny paper. Yours were mostly from the Light. When SA had the Light, the Express and the Evening News, competition was fierce. The Light was always in third place. The SA News was folded into the Express decades ago.
For those who no longer live in San Antonio, twenty or so years ago, the Light bought the SA Express and shut down the Light. If you can’t beat them, buy them was their solution. After sitting empty for some years, the Light building on Broadway is finally being renovated and converted to office and retail space. On on comics, you jogged my memory with Red Ryder and Alley Oop.
When we bought our first house,I took the Express, the Evening News and the Light, every day and on Sunday. They were really great papers. I patiently waited for the afternoon paper to be delivered. It was usually folded in a little square. That time was not like today, we had to wait several days to know what was happening. Harlingen has the Valley Morning Star and I think it is about 10 pages in total.
The Light Building was where we gathered for the start of the Battle of Flowers Parade. That was a long walk from there to Houston Street. Did you know Bernhard Horner, M.D.? He was a physician in SA from the 50’s to the 2000’s. His dad was Col. B.J. Horner, the publisher of the Light Paper and my dad’s cousin.