Dear Hearts and Gentle People:
The Royals just won, the sun is shining, and summer is here at last. It’s been a very soggy four months in the old hometown. Your correspondent hopes this finds you well and enjoying the 4th of July weekend. God bless America!
For those of you who live away, I must include the obituary column. Since Issue #144 we have lost the following Lexington residents/friends: Gertrude Shannon, Janet Hunton Westgate, Ed Luehrman, Betty Barron Mussatto, Pat Cox, Caroline (Mrs. Sam) Ratcliffe, Clemella Farlow, Bette Maib, Edgar Cox, Vonnie Farlow, Dorothy Wallace, Claudine Trent, Kim Hulver, Bobby Johnson, Gerald Gordon, Flo Frerking, and Ralph Meador. If I have overlooked anyone, forgive me and please send an announcement for the next issue. Also if you would like a complete obituary, let me know and I’ll send it.
Now to the mail:
Valerie Wood-Helyer : Thank you, Susan, for another wonderful newsletter. No matter how much of a hurry I'm in when going through my emails, I always stop to read your entire newsletter. It feels so good to stay connected with Lexington and its history. I love the idea of printing and binding them for the generations to come, and I'm sure if you put them into a book format they would sell, sell, sell! Thank you again.
I do plan to assemble Issues to date and put them in a binder in the Museum.
Jim O’Malley wrote: I had a call from Tonia Beltram Ballard. She told me that her husband, Bill, died in September. They had been married 65 and a half years! She said the cause was Agent Orange that he got while he was stationed in Vietnam. Tonia is living in Texas and asked about many of her LHS class of '49 classmates. If someone would like her address or phone number, send me an email or give me a call.
This one made me very happy: My name is Wayne Struchtemeyer. I have been receiving a copy of the newsletter that you have been issuing via Larry Kopp. If possible I would like to be added to your distribution list. I am a 1961 graduate from LHS and enjoy reading the update information that is published in your newsletter. I lived in Lexington until 1966 when my wife Linda (Holman) Struchtemeyer and I moved to Grandview MO. I had graduated from Wentworth in 1963, followed by graduating from UCM (Warrensburg) in 1965. I later completed my Engineering Degree and my MBA from Findlay Engineering College and Rockhurst University. I spent my entire career with the Marley Company, now SPX Corporation. I moved to Olathe, KS in 1991 following the death of Linda in 1988 and remarried Patricia Coleman in 1991. I retired in 2001 following a 34 year career with Marley, 18 years spent as Senior Vice President of Operations. I owe much of my career opportunities to my education and teacher support given me at LHS. Mr. Viebrock was a very strong supporter for me, giving me encouragement and direction as a Junior and Senior. Again, I would appreciate receiving your newsletter if possible.
Dennis Whitehead: I sent a group email about the publication of Love and Sacrifice, and I wanted to make certain you all received it. I truly appreciate everyone's help in my research. You all put in more than I could ever fit into this book, as much as I'd wished I could. And, I'm certain that names were overlooked in the acknowledgements but please know that I am deeply appreciative of everyone’s help and input. Please let folks know about the book and, please, write some reviews. I'll don my helmet and flak jacket for the stuff I got wrong (hopefully, not much-to-nothing). I hope all is well with you. I think of my friends in Lexington often and look forward to visiting during a book tour through Missouri and Kansas.
Shirley Briggle Miller sent me a clipping about the retirement of her husband from the The Dallas Morning News. Bob wrote a column for the newspaper for 64 years, then rushed right into retirement at 91.June 16, 2015 10:30 PM CDTJune 17, 2015 12:23 AM CDTAt 91, The News’ Bob Miller is calling it a career after 64 years
Jack Gueguen: Susan, last night I got to thinking that 2022 will be Lexington’s Bi-centennial. Are people starting to think about that? We gained a lot of experience with the Sesqui-centennial in 1972, as I recall. It’s not too early to make/revise a list of old homes/churches/businesses, some of them needing refurbishing for the occasion (including the Heathman/Gueguen home where I grew up on N. 16th; it was built in the 1840s.) Would state money be available for such things? Don’t we have several “ historical districts”? The next six years will pass quickly. A committee might also start thinking of special events to be organized. This is an occasion for our town to exercise leadership when surrounding communities think of doing something similar in the future for their anniversaries—especially Independence (the old Westport) and St. Joseph. I hope you are well and keeping busy, as I am. The latest update: An experienced care-giver has moved in with us to see to my needs as I advance in “second baby-hood.” He has been a real God-send.
Yes, we have four National Historic Districts. Jack makes a very good point. I do not know if plans have been laid or leaders drafted for our Bi-Centennial. It’s exciting to think about, and I promise to report on that as soon as I learn something concrete.
A major effort of our history is contained in the newly released Driving and Walking Tours of Lexington DVD. It was the result of being selected for a Community Arts Pilot Project, partnering with the University of Missouri Extension to promote economic development in Lexington through the arts. It’s called Legends of Lexington, and you can even download it by going to http://www.visitlexingtonmo.com.
Upcoming events include the Peach Festival, Stargazing at the Battlefield 8/15, Living History Event with Holmes Brigade (also at the Battle of Lexington SHS) 8/19, the Community Fair Aug. 23-29, the annual Freedom Walk 9/11, the Old Homes Tour 9/12 and 9/13, The Diamonds (Li’l Darlin’ fame) appearing at Live! In Lexington 9/21, the annual Apples, Arts & Antiques Fair 9/26 and 9/27. A highlight of that popular event will be artifacts from the Steamboat Arabia on display at the Battlefield.
And finally now my biggest announcement. My daughter-in-law loaded up a huge box of slides (transparencies) from our Museum archives which she then transferred to a flash drive so that we can have displays of Lexington in the 1940s, 50s, 60s and 70s. There are 3,094 (!!!) photos of Lexington during that time – mostly downtown and the historic homes, but there are quite a few with local people in them. In August the Historical Association will hold a fun event, a slide showing of the pictures. There may be popcorn involved.
One last comment. You will notice that, although it has been a while since #144,
there are only a handful of communications for me to share. Considering that over 500 people receive the TLCs, think how wonderful
it would be if everyone wrote a note just once a year. I know about peer pressure, and I’m not afraid to use it!
There are a few new photos, along with archived issues, on our website: www.thelexingtonconnection.com. Thanks to Bob Ball, webmaster extraordinaire, for his work on that.
I’ll be waiting to hear from you.
Your devoted scribe,