Originally sent August 6
News been rollin in faster than an AP ticker-tape:
A new [soft cover - 127 pages] book out features a history of Fort Sill, Wichita Mountains, founding of Lawton, Medicine Park and tons of neat pictures. 'Images of America: Medicine Park - Oklahoma's First Resort' by David C. Lott. Lott was one of the early forces behind renovation and restoration of Medicine Park. The book is currently available at the Museum of the Great Plains in Lawton, actually some autographed copies at this time. Or check it out at: www.arcadiapublishing.com
From the eMail bag:A dear friend Sue (Chalk) Briggs, '64, will be resuming treatment for cancer soon and probably a serious surgery in near future. She asks for your prayers during this difficult time.
One of our LHS teachers, Bernice Smith, fell at her home recently and is hospitalized in the Towers (rehab) at Memorial Hospital here in Lawton. When discharged she will be going to an assisted living facility. She is 98 or 99 years young! I know we all wish her well and I will try to get an address where cards could be sent.
Bert Click sent this... "I did speak to Peggy Loud by phone two nights ago. She has relocated to a Christian Science assisted living home in San Francisco, should anybody need a contact. She's as lovely as ever."
..." with all the talk about Western stars, does anyone remember that Smiley Burnett opened a drive-in, in Lawton back sometime in the 50's or 60's and came to town several times to promote the place."
Ben [Ansley, '59]
I don't re-call...anyone..?
"Hey Georgia, your mentioning of the Vaska theater brought back memories . Dan Wiseman, '59, and myself, worked at the Vaska during our high school years. It was great place to work and at the time was a really nice place to see a movie. During the summers, they would have first run movies for a two week period with an afternoon showing and then a evening showing. "Around The World in Eighty Days" and the "Ten Commandments" were the specials that were run for two weeks one summer. And of course, we got to see everybody."
Jerry Otis, '59
"We lived on Euclid between 18th & 19th and spent alot of time at the Vaska theater. We could go out our back gate, down the alley and across 19th right to the theater. I also remember the Spudnut place in the Vaska building and the barber shop that was there for years. Lots of good memories."
Barbara (Odom) Smith, '56
"Now I'm not one to argue with Sam Hamra but here's how it went down. The architect who designed the Vaska prepared a preliminary design that included a perspective drawing and, lacking a name for the theatre, showed his wife's first name 'Vaska' on the big sign. Further, being in my hood, I attended the first movie shown to the public there and the movie was 'Smoky' , a movie about some sort of horse. So there."
Don Yancey, '56
Don is exactly right!
"I just have to ask, in reference the Vaska theatre.....I do remember the early bird show was on Sat. mornings. I could hardly wait to go and meet the Shanklin twins (Jean & Jane). Also remember trying to sneak into the room in back that was for the crying babies. Shame on me!!!!! What I really want to know is if anyone remembers some lady that use to entertain us live on stage before the movie. I think her name was BELL or something like that. if anyone remembers her name I would love to know..Just curious, thanks,
Bill Stamps, '60.
I'm not sure but think maybe it was Dorothy Bell who played the piano like a whiz and also taught piano. Her daughter Elayne is class '64 and should be getting these emails. How about it Elayne? Or does someone else remember?
Judy (Matthews) Johnson commented...." I was class of 58! Not like those "old folks" prior to 58!" I do apologize for making Judy a year older in last news. At this point, we need every 'year off' we can get!
Wanda (Smith) Sunderland, '55, writes that she and her husband are both experiencing serious health issues at this time. But, she has a very positive attitude toward the "golden years" and plans to be here for the class '55 reunion this October. It will coincide with her husband Bobby's reunion in Hobart! I know we all hope the best and speedy recoveries for them both.
"Wow!! I always knew that doctors had a pathological attraction for bars. But, how did Sam know about those churches?"
Bobby Spradlin, ' 55
Bob & Sam are good friends OR I wouldn't have sent this out. Well...they were good friends!!! I am reminded of the golden oldie song...'Devil or Angel'. Maybe they were thinking about Sam when they wrote it? hahahahah. OK, Sam, just kidding. We love ya!
Doyce Grayson, '56, and wife Diane have retired and moved back to the home town. We visited a few minutes and while they have a beautiful trailer site out by Lawtonka, Doyce says they may build a house! Welcome home guys!
btw...I am sure Doyce will (per every year) be at the hospitality tent as the Lawton Ranger Rodeo kicks off next Wednesday - 11th - and goes through Saturday night. Gee-haw!
Speaking of Roy Rogers.....have you seen the LaQuinta commercial that features Roy and Gabby Hayes? LaQuita uses them but of course 'mouths' their own commercial words. Afraid all Roy & Gabby had was a rough bunk-house with hard cots at the end of their trail! Well, in the movies!
It's August 6 and that means Lawton's 109th birthday AND, 45 years of wedded bliss for me and Bill!!
Have a great week-end guys..........Georgia