Saturday, September 4, 2010

......LHS News......
Originally sent August 30

Loss of more golden Wolverines:

Rosemary (Allen) Frink, 93, of Lawton. Rosemary passed August 28 in Norman. She was LHS class 1935, attended OU where she was a member of Tri-Delt sorority. She is survived by three sons and two daughters, numerous grand-great grand children. A memorial service will be held at 2:00pm Thursday Sept. 2, St. Andrews Episcopal church in Lawton.Extended obit and guest book at:

Also passing, Ralph Leon Wertz, 92, of Lawton. Ralph passed August 25. He was longtime Lawton business man, LHS class 1935. He married Virginia (Zorger) in 1949, she passed in 2006. Services for Ralph were August 30.Extended obit and guest book at:

From the eMail bag:

Bobby Spradlin, '55, says his wife Stona just celebrated her XXth birthday! (I can't bring myself to divulge another females age)!!! Stona is a lovely person and hasn't changed in bit in all the years I have known her. Picture above is Stona in the middle, her friend Nancy (Klass) Medlock, '55, on the right and her daughter Sydney on left. Many happy returns Stona!

btw...she & Bobby will celebrate their 50th next March! That will provide a hint about her age! That's right - she's 51!

Bob Atkins, '57, and wife Jana have just returned from a vacation in Cancun. Bob reports they had a fantastic time sipping Banana Monkeys, (he said every hour is 'happy hour'), scuba diving, dancing the night away at CoCo Bongo, walking through Marked 28..."which I believe is one of the largest flee markets I have ever walked through. I saw everything from Cuban cigars to tacky gold jewelry, there was produce, and fresh fish along with all of the typical tourist souvenirs." They also rented a car and drove to Playa del Carmen and points on. They sent some great photos, I can't share them all so being a long time collector of El Dia de los Muertos, I'll share the pix of Bob with the wonderful life-size DOD figures. (above).

"Georgia, your e-mail's bring back a lot of memories of our childhood. One area not mentioned is Lawton's effort after WW II at professional baseball----Lawton had a class D club of the New York Giants ----The Lawton Giants of the Sooner State League. This was in 47, 48 and 49. What made me think of it was your mentioning Smokey Torbert, he worked as one of the concessions inside guys. Jimmy Herring, '53 and my self sold soda pop, and hot dogs in the Stands. Lawton had some good teams and would beat other teams regularly.

Wayne Kniffin, '52, also worked those summers----as I remember. At that time Jimmy lived across the street from your Bill in the 14 hundred block of D Street. The ball park was just east of Sheridan road and next to the rail road tracks."
John Amburgey, '53

FYI: my Bill's dad was part owner of the club and Bill spent quite a bit of time there...I think all will enjoy response Bill sent back to John:

"Johnny, Your memory is pretty good. After Smokey and others, Wayne [Kniffin] and I and Jim Warkentin worked the concession stand. R.A. Burt and others were pop boys. [they were younger]. Donnie Ramos was a batboy also. I guess that is where I learned to eat about as many hot dogs as my belly could stand and drink 6 or 7 soda pops a day. Jimmy and I learned to shoot craps using mills as money at our house at 1215 D. We probably knew as much about crap shooting then as I do now. Wayne lives outside Detroit, Michigan and I hear from him and his wife Judy ever once in a while. I will forward him this email. Maybe he can insert some things that he can remember."
Bill "Pee Wee" Williams, '52

"I was a grad in the LHS class of 55. I went to OU, got a degree in education and returned to Lawton to teach. I also served as a reserve police officer for Lawton PD and was called to extra duty the evening that the Murray theater caught fire in '62 (I think) and burned down the north side of "C" street. Another officer and I used a tire tool to break into Earl Drug store to salvage what we could just before the fire attacked the building. Not knowing anything about the value of pharmacies, we collected anything that looked like important records (prescription files, etc.), and stowed them in the trunk of a police car until the owner could be contacted. Can you guess who the owner was?"
Milton Simpson

Well, yes, as Milt knows, my Bill & his dad were owner of the drug store. Fortunately, most loss was repairable/replaceable as the files were saved. There was another fire some years later that also caused water and smoke damage. Both fires were arson, set a few doors down - east - by different people but both for money! No fire is good!

btw....Mike Wyant took some interesting pictures of the first fire and he was kind enough to bring them to us some years back. I have them on file....somewhere????

"I was amazed at the response to my ''How about the Vaska?'' after reading commentson the downtown movie theaters a while back. I made that comment because I lived close to the Vaska in the 50's. Now I see Nikki's comment re: Fairmont. My father, Lee Roy Lewis, was the retail sales manager for Fairmont at that time and I remember many early morning deliveries to homeswhere we actually would put the milk, and other dairy products, into the refrigerators in the customers home or just leave it on the porch. Those were times when you could trustpeople and not have to lock your house. Times have changed!"
Michael Lewis, '57

"I remember the Fairmont contest as my Dad worked for them. You would think my 2 siblings and I would have an "in", however, we did not. We had to collect them just everyone else. Actually, we were taught a very good lesson during that campaign. Loved going to the Vaska on Saturday mornings -- it always seemed like such a treat."
Sandy (Childs) Mead - class of 1965!!

"I've been enjoying your responses about western stars, Vaska and Ritz theaters, and I remember the fire at the Dome Theater. I was supposed to be home by 10 but I called and my dad was really upset and told me to get home right then! ...I remember going to the Murray theater and seeing LOTS of westerns and the Red Shoes. Don't think I understood it back then... I too have some signed photos that Mom took of Monte Hale, Bill Elliott, unsigned of Bob Hope, and I definitely remember being "afraid" to walk from C Street to D Street there on 3rd street. I'd go through Kress before walking on 3rd St. I'm sure all those fellas knew we were scared to death and just laughed and laughed.You mentioned the drive-ins today. I got to work there with one of my cousins Jonathan in the concession stand--he ran the film and I helped with pop and popcorn. Occasionally I'd get to wait on cars as they came in and get their change from the box where the tickets were. And, my sis-in-law Jane Lewis ran across a Hankins Drive In shirt several years ago at an auction and got the top bid for it! My dad nor Jack Hankins had the shirts when they ran it... Your emails bring memories back--just like they were yesterday. In fact, Dad got the drive-in just a little late, I think--TV just started coming out so drive-ins had a short stay."
Susan (Hankins) Ellington

"Just want to share a couple of thoughts. As I recall there were two Smith sisters who taught at Junior High. One of them had a beautiful body and she was inclined to wear tight fitting wool suits during the winter. To add to my adolescent fantasy she draped herself on the edge of her desk while lecturing. Also, it doesn't seem to be common knowledge that Joan Crawford spent a part of her childhood in Lawton. In 1908 her father had an open air burlesque house downtown."
Ron Hall '55

Have to say Ron....those are some thoughts! Can you remember what she taught Ron? Joan Crawford did indeed spend a little time in Lawton. It comes up time to time, especially in exhibits at the Museum of the Great Plains. An exhibit last fall featured writings and other 'artifacts' of 1912 LHS grad, Don Blanding. Blanding did the art work for the Lore that year, and later became a world traveler (Vagabond) and was a world renowned poet and somewhat of an artist or illustrator. The exhibit included several letters, and other 'mentions' of Joan Crawford. Blanding lived next door or across the street from Crawford on D street and was a friend. Talked about taking her to the hospital or the doctor when she fell and cut her knee. More than you wanted to know???

In regard to Don Yanceys question.....

"I could be wrong but I think the hamburgers were 20 cents and the cheeseburgers were 25. Maybe that's wishful thinking. I remember that first McDonalds had them for fifteen cents and that was low."
Frankie (Ingraham) Kinderman"

I believe hamburger in the basket was 35 cents at Wayne's in 1956."
Mary Ann (Goode) Pursley

"All these memories of Wayne's.. over the years I have thought of Lydia - the most patient carhop ever. I hope she knew how much she was appreciated. Has anyone mentioned her? She deserved a Purple Heart for all our craziness - hope she's not in a straight-jacket somewhere.I'm not sure about the price of hamburgers/sissyburgers/cheeseburgers but I do remember you could get a gazillion of the best ever French fries for $.20."
Judy (Ray) Outlaw
I remember Lydia! She married or was married to a ....Cole?

"I wanted to tell Don Yancey that we would get a Sissy Burger with fries for 35 cents. That was in '62-'63. Seems impossible now! Drinks were cheaper than that."
Janet (Burt) Terry

"If I had to guess I'd say a quarter -- maybe less, not more. I remember some 'upstart' hamburger chain - maybe Burger Chef - was able to advertise something like "World's largest ten cent hamburger supplier" only after McDonald's had increased their price to twelve cents. If you really want to know the actual number send a note to Jack Forbess (LHS '55) He has a collection of EVERYTHING and EVERY MENU that ever was. Before we all get too nostalgic about prices in the fifties, let us remember that it is the money . not the cost of products . that has changed. My first corporate salary was seven thousand dollars per year which was seven times minimum wage. Seven times today's minimum wage would be over one hundred thousand dollars. Dollars are rubber yardsticks. (Am I revealing more of my political/economic beliefs than you care to know?)"
John Waller

Well, I know I'm confused John! hahahhaha! Will send this news to Forbess (menu collector....hummmmm)....or maybe he already receives the news? I hope you are all happy! Now I'm cravin' a coney dog from WAYNE'S!

Emails from: Melvin Sexton; Ed Hesler; Mitch Braley; Ron Snyder...others sent 'memories' that I will share soon.I have received a lot of email in regard to the Easter Pageant and the movie that was made and will eventually get more of it together!

Regards from the home town. Georgia

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