TLC logo TLC #9 - The REAL One!:  April 19, 2001


NOTE: Did you ever hit the "Send" button and scream "No! NO! NOOOO!" Well, I don't know what happened, but my draft ended up in my "Sent" box. So what follows is the complete and edited version.
Dear Hearts & Gentle People:
What's become of me, you say? Or, more accurately, what's become of the news from the old hometown? My excuse: tax season. You see, I have a little tax preparation business here in my home...and I got a little busy the last few weeks. Sorry. I'll make up for it now with lots of news and lots of messages. So, settle in and get ready to read.
It's been a busy week in Lexington, several major events. First, Bank Midwest unveiled their new redecoration with a ribbon cutting. Then the new B&L Bank (combining B&L Bank, formerly Lex Building & Loan, and Lafayette County Bank) opened with a grand Open House on Sunday.
Next on the domino chain: City Hall moved to the former B&L Bank building (the colonial style building at 10th & Franklin). Lovely new offices for the city, much more room, and happier employees. Just today the new Wal-Mart SuperCenter opened in Richmond, thereby increasing the traffic flow across our dear old Highway 13 bridge. (I find the only way to drive it without fear is to close your eyes and floorboard the accelerator.)
Site preparation at the Franklin Hole continues, and this week they uncovered two buried houses! Apparently that's the way they used to dispose of unwanted buildings: they tore them down and buried them. Does make for some interesting experiences when you begin building on that property again, such as major settling. But we forge on, and one day we will have a movie theatre there.
One other thought before I send messages from your old chums. You may be interested to know there is a revival of downtown apartments occurring. People are renovating them and living in them, which makes downtown much more "alive" at night and on holidays. There is a lot of "life" in town annnnnnd it's becoming quite chic to live there. I have seen some of the apartments and they are really lovely, and interesting.
I wish you were all here to see the town in bloom. The daffodils are pretty much finished, but all the flowering trees are coming on strong. The tulip trees were simply gorgeous this year. Seems to be a very virile spring. Everything is green and everyone is sneezing.
The following is excerpts from your fellow Lexingtonians who were kind enough to write. Yawl do the same!
From Wayne Tabb:
Just wrote a note to Duane Schluetter after seeing his
name on your mailing list. I was telling him that I
found a matchbook cover from back in the days when his
dad was running for county sheriff. I found it here in
Austin TX, at a flea market about ten years ago. Of
course I bought it. Small world, heh?
From Mike McDonald: (through Shirley Briggle)

I am in Baton Rouge, LA, and my wife's name is Roberta but everyone calls
her "Bobbie".  I'm retired, as of 1995, after working 40 years as a chemical
engineer at Exxon.  We had 3 kids, all graduated from college (one chem.
engr., one CPA, one elementary school teacher).  We have 6 grand kids, one
college grad. (sixth grade teacher), one in college and the other four in
high school.  I'm very active in volunteer things and basically having the
time of my life, except for Bobbie's second brush with cancer in the past
three years.  Glad to hear from you and I love the TLC.  Believe it or not I
remember you and Mary Jo just like it was yesterday.  You were both so
pretty.  Unfortunately, I am just an ugly old man with a bunch of good memories.
From Duncan Lee:
Dear Susan,
My sister, Barbara Lee Fay, forwarded your newsletter to me this week and said she gave you my email address, also. Even though I'm "so much" younger than you guys (okay, only 3 yrs. Class of '60) I remember most of your "correspondents". Perhaps a few of them remember me. I would love to receive your emailed correspondence from other Lexingtonians.
Congratulations on the naming of the street after your Dad. I can remember my Dad mentioning your father's name many times a week. I think they shared many hours at the Victory over coffee. By the way, my Dad did hear that someone is putting in a theater in the old Franklin Hole.
I won't take the time or space to give a history of my life since LHS, but briefly: 2 yrs. at Coe College; journalism degree from MU; 2 yrs. at good old KLEX; 3 yrs. US Army, mostly in Germany; 18-years with RJR  Tobacco International as sponsorships director, the last 7 in England; another 4 yrs. in England as a consultant; now in No. Nevada trying to get a web site to work and playing with hot rods, old race cars and Harley Davidsons. Two failed marriages, no children, but a life most people would never dream of.
I've been to every continent except Antarctica. I've dined with royalty and slept in rain forests of the Amazon and Borneo. I gave a speech in Red Square (non-political!) and spent nearly a month in Siberia (in the summer!). Needless to say, this story could go on for a long time.
I have a fantastic lady companion now and we love sharing many things together. She's getting used to my wanderlust. I think!
I heard about Harold Harden's stroke, but no news lately. Anyone heard anything?
I've lost touch with nearly everyone in my class. I saw David Goodloe a couple of times in '96 and '97 and hear he is in Warrensburg. Since my parents moved to KC, I don't get much Lexington news, so this email letter is great. Keep it up.
Barb forwarded TLC #8 to me. That's the only one I have. Send 'em all, if you don't mind.
Christmas of '99 I took my girl friend, Kathy, to KC to meet the family and we did The Tour of Lexington. I pointed out your house. I guess she liked everything okay because she moved in with me!
When I get some time I'll send a little more info on what I've been up to. If you run across anyone from Class of '60 ask if they have e-mail. Carol (Grechus) Summerlin's sister Joyce was in my class and, of course, I married their cousin, Judy. But, I have no idea what any of them are up to. I saw Carol about 6 or 7 years ago and she was working at the bank.
From Barbara Tabb:
Thanks again for the great job you are doing.  I look forward to
catching up with what is going on in Lexington, and it's nice to see all
those familiar names in your e-mail list.  I feel very fortunate in that
I remember all those people on the list with the exception of a few, and
didn't even have to hunt up an old yearbook.  I think those I didn't
recognize were either gals whose married name I never did know, or folks
who moved there after I left.  I don't think any of them were from
'before my time', because only dirt seems to qualify for that anymore.
It's nice to see that many people online with close ties to Lexington.
I do feel very tied to my roots, and even chose the name Showme_Mo
as my chat name in Yahoo. I moved away from there in '56 when I got
married, and have lived all over the Midwest, but it's still 'home' to
those formative years that so many of us shared. I have many wonderful
memories from those times, and can't think of a better place in the
world to have grown up.  I never did make it to a class reunion until
the one that was our 20th, and have tried not to miss a one since. What
struck me about that one, and even  those that followed, was that: -
even if I had to think a minute about who it was, all the years just
melted away once we started talking, and shared some old memories that
'tied us together'. The only thing wrong with those that include 5
classes is that you don't have enough time to really sit down and visit
with everybody at the reunion itself. But, I really did enjoy running
across anybody I knew during that visit, and had the time to give
undivided attention to a real conversation.  Like - going 'uptown' for
the Homecoming Parade, and running across people who were kind enough to
'recognize me' after all these years. haha. I had some great
conversations with a number of people. I will say this, though, and I
mean no offense to the current denizens of L.H.S.  We DID know how to
have a pep rally, and I've got the home movies to prove it.  It was
'tradition', and I saw big changes in the ones they have today. We
centered a lot of our activities around sports, and it was L.H.S. that
was the core of our most common memories. But, I don't long for the
sports news of today - nobody will ever match the record of schoolyear
54'-'55 in sports - so, let's hear it for us. You guys who want 'sports
news' - subscribe to the current Lexington paper, which is little else.
    On that subject - congratulations, Susan, on the honor being given
your Dad, and maybe he just set too high a standard for a hometown
newspaper. And, I can't say enough about what an asset he was to the whole
community - he is very deserving of the honor. I used that nice access street
to the new museum on the Civil War site, and was also impressed by what has
been done there. I would advise everybody to go out there and spend the day
- well worth the trip, and I plan to go back. I learned soooo much that I
hadn't known before, and wanted to scour the place for all the history
there. I don't know who is responsible for getting that done, but I
certainly did enjoy it, so maybe you can pass along my sincere thanks to
anyone involved.
Keep up the good work. I think I detect that you are even enjoying
it, so I guess you are probably speaking to 'Brig' again because of it.
haha. I do look forward to them, and appreciate your taking the time to
do it  Keep 'em coming!

'Til later.............. warmest regard, Barbara

From Carol Murry Slusher: 
Mother is still progressing although it is at a snail's pace and as everyone knows her daughter never was a champion of patience.
Jack and I are joining Ken and Deb Murry for a cruise in the Mexican Riveria area the last full week of April.  
From A.W. Sandring:
Tonight I talked to Norman (Thorson) over the phone. He doesn't get to Lexington very often.  The last time he came was when they had the visitation for Sonny Fiora. He said Richard VanZandt and his wife came up to his home in Lathrop last night just for a visit.  He showed Richard the eight issues of TLC that I had mailed him, and Richard said "I didn't know all of this information... here I have to come all the way to Lathrop to find out what is happening in my own home town". For example, he didn't know about the naming of 13th street for your dad,etc.  Again, he said your TLC is excellent!

I was telling Norman that maybe you could mail out a printed version and sell it at some subscription rate, or for a donation of X dollars a year or some kind of arrangement.  He thought this sounded good, as there are probably a lot of Lexington old timers that have not entered into the computer world.  Sounds a lot like the birth of another newspaper...

To answer your question, yes my sister finally got permission from a lady in
Higginsville to bring the Winkler/Sandring/Samuelson history in at 10:00 am
on Monday morning, April 2.  Somewhere I read where the 1900 version was
published in 1910.  I do know it had my grandfather Sandring's date of
death, which was in 1904, printed in the article that covered his life.
So... it looks like they want to get this version out a lot faster than the
one a hundred years ago.  --  I read somewhere where they have about 1100
family histories for this version.  I wonder how well they advertised as
Norman didn't know about it, and also two relatives in Waverly didn't know
about it when I saw them last Sunday.  Oh well, that is the way the cookie
crumbles. Thanks for helping my sister, and also thank you for your
interest in asking if we made it in with the histories O.K.
Living up here makes it difficult to know of news to send you, but I will
send any I know about as soon as it happens.  Thanks again for everything.
- A.W.
From Liz Bertz Fenner:
    I would really appreciate your running the following list of names in
your newsletter.  Perhaps someone will give a clue as to how to track down
some of the missing persons.
    Class of '51:  William Hollingsworth, Marilyn Vanderlinden, Ben Bob
Tarwarter, Richard Horton, Marjorie Rodenberg Schoppenhorst, Mary Ann
Garner Higgins, William Canning.
   Class of "52:  Kenneth Barnes, Estella Whisler Brandstatter, Emelyn
Lefman Clemens, Carolyn Priddy Weise, Carol Sue Kriehn Clevenger.
   The reunion is set for Labor Day weekend, August 31-Sept. 2.
Editor's note: Voila! We've already found one, Liz!

From Jack Gueguen:
Dear Susan,
You may like to send this news about Mary Jo (Farrow) Hammontree to the network.  Many of her classmates have been wondering about the circumstances of her recent death on March 2 in K.C.  This morning I had a long phone conversation with the priest at St. Patrick's church in St. Joseph (Father Matthew) who has been close to her over the past several years, during which the people of that parish have been like a second family to her.  He attended her in her final illness.  Here is what he related:
In the fall of 1999 she was diagnosed with ovarian cancer.  After a round of chemo that winter, the cancer was arrested for about a year, during which she was her usual cheerful self.  It's possible that she excused herself from our family reunion in June, 2000 because we would have noticed the effects of the radiation.  The cancer became active again in the fall of 2000 and spread into the abdomen.  The pain increased.  The second bout of chemo left her considerably weakened, and was less effective.  This past Jan. she was told that there was nothing further the doctors could do for her, and she began to make preparations for final arrangments.  She had to be admitted to St. Luke's shortly thereafter.  Just before she slipped into a coma on Feb. 28, she was given the last rites of the Church (Anointing of the Sick) and two friends who had worked with her at Mo. Public Service were with her constantly until the end.  She also had frequent visits from pastoral staff of her old parish in Independence, St. Mark's.  They said she went very peacefully, and was so eager to rejoin her husband, Lyle.  She had observed her 68th birthday on Feb. 11.
She and Lyle had been a devoted couple and were very much looking forward to retirement five years ago when he suddenly died.  This was a shattering experience for Mary Jo, but she emerged from it stronger and more devoted to serving others in the Independence and St. Joe areas (including the nuns who used to teach at the school in Lexington).  She had lost her sister Ann (Zeller) a few years earlier, and probably made no further trips to Lexington after that.  The last immediate relative, her brother Shelby, died a couple of years ago.
Father Matthew described the beautiful wake service and funeral Mass, which was attended by about 30 friends from the parish and MPS.  Several tried to put into words what she had meant to them.  Her sister-in-law, Delois (Dorores?), was present and later met with the attorney Mary Jo had engaged for disposing of the house on Dodgian street in Indep. (now up for sale) and its contents.  She had requested that all the family memorabilia be destroyed, but Delois prevailed upon the attorney to allow her to keep precious photos, etc.  The two women who were with her at the end were also given items from the home as keepsakes.
Father Matthew said that he was indebted to Mary Jo for her strong example of quiet acceptance of the Lord's will for her.  He advised us all to learn, too, how important it is to enjoy life as it comes, spend time with our loved ones, and "not wait for retirement," which may not be up to our expectations.
If any of you can get up to St. Joe to meet and personally thank Father Matthew for having been such a devoted friend and substitute family, I would much appreciate it.  St. Patrick's is at 1723 S. 12th St. (64503).  The phone is (816) 279-2594.
Stay tuned for Part 2 !!!!

Links to other pages