Wednesday, November 30, 2011

......LHS News......
Originally sent November 21

Barb Odom Smith, '56, says her brother - David Shell - is also a 'turkey' this year, being born on November 24. David is LHS class 1969 & he and wife Susan live in Tijeras, NM, just outside Albuquerque. He returns 'home' on occasion to hike out in the Wichitas.

My sister Suzy Salas, '64, is just back from Vegas! Don't know what she/they did? What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas!!!!!

'59 classmate Wade Harrison has left the 'home town' to return to the sunny state of Arizona! He will be doing some back and forth but one of Wades daughters is the area (Scottsdale) and he has lived there previously! All the best Wade!

Also in AZ for Thanksgiving, classmate Larry Campbell. He is in Phoenix with son Chris who works for PING!

Have to share this....I was so excited when Lewis Chandler emailed to let me know he had purchased a 1914 LORE at an auction in Tulsa. The auction was done for the estate of Nancy (English) King, formerly of Lawton, and daughter of Exall English, founder of Security Bank. I am sure the LORE belonged to Exall or possibly his wife, Lucille. I was even more excited when Lewis sent the LORE to me for safe keeping and posterity! I have read some and do recognize a few names of those who became business people in Lawton. Just a great 'book' and in very good condition, just small water damage on bottom. I will take great care to preserve it!

NOTE: The English family lived across the street from us when I was growing up. They had two daughters - Nancy and Ellen. ( and a Cocker named Fudgie). Both girls went to school in Lawton until Jr High, freshman or maybe sophomore year and then they went away to private school. Nancy obviously has passed but I do not know when? I have not heard anything about Ellen (English) Chadwell in years. I know some of you will remember them and had they remained in Lawton school would have been classes of about '55, '56, '57?

Mike Wyant, '57, let me know that the fall edition of The Prairie Lore ( published by the Southwest Oklahoma Historical Society) contains two stories and a poem written by Mike that describes growing up in Lawton in the 1940's and 50's. Mike says he feels 'honored' to be in the same edition as several other interesting stories including one about Erle Haliburton, (The Haliburton Company of Duncan), and the great Comanche Chief, Quanah Parker.

For those interested, the semi-annual publication can only be obtained from the Southwest Oklahoma Historical Society, P.O. Box 3693, Lawton, OK 73502, for an annual fee of $12.00.
Mike says he will have more stories and articles in the future but will only "use some of your names in the good stories"! Well.........maybe better check this out!!!!

btw....Mike was in a car wreck couple months ago but luckily escaped with minor cuts and bruises.

Are YOU a former Camp Fire Girl? If so, Connie (Conway) is trying to find out IF any of you gals would be interested in a WO HE LO Camp Fire Girl reunion? Maybe next spring? April - 2012? She has started gathering names, addresses, etc., and would like to hear from any who would like to have this type reunion. The Camp Fire Girl office here in Lawton closed in 1990's and there are NO records. Locating former Camp Fire Girls will have to be done word of mouth, contacting those you may know. You can email Connie at: or call her at: (580) 574-6601. She works but does have an answer machine and will return all calls. So..... get hold of Connie and let her know.


Jerry Boucher sent an update on wife Mary Ann. News was some 'better' than they thought, but she was diagnosed at MD Anderson with a blood disorder called Myleofibrosis. She is joining a trial program dealing with this illness and it will necessitate their traveling back & forth to Houston for a while. They ask for your prayers.

Have just received info that Wilma Jean (Ervin)Young passed November 5 in Colorado and services were held November 11. She was LHS class 1951. She was preceded in death by her husband Dean Young, class 1950; she is survived by a daughter, DeAnn; a son Steve; several grandchildren; a brother Covert Lee Ervin [would have been '59] who is married to our '59 classmate Gloria (Lamb).
Extended obit and guest book at:

Our thoughts and prayers are with those who have lost loved ones and those who are experiencing illness.


Again, lot of new names to receive the LHS News. Welcome and want to remind you, previously sent news, photos, other, is archived HERE!

I wish each of you a wonderful Thanksgiving filled with family and friends. Georgia

Monday, November 21, 2011

......LHS News......
Originally sent November 18

Had opportunity to watch the DVD, "Memories of Old Lawton High". It is being shown on the local educational channel. Very well done & enjoyable. [So far] Has interviews with former LHS grads, Dr. Charles Graybill and his wife Betty, Wayne & Mary Jo Smith, Ken Bridges, Bob Hillis, Peggy (Elledge) Long, Minnette (Zak) Page. Good stories of the 'old' days and some quite humorous.

You can order a copy of the DVD by contacting:
They are $12. each IF you pick them up. If ordering to be mailed, add $5. - total $17.
They are continuing work on the interviews and at some point, you will be able to watch in the 'Memory Room' at the Old High School.

Also, a Christmas ornament is being sold by the Lawton Heritage Association and is now available at the Museum and Massads Gifts. It features a 'picture' of the Old High School. (see photo). Lovely and is nicely 'packaged'. It is metal and around 'border' that says Lawton High School, it is 'gold tone' while the school itself is 'silver tone'. Like they say on eBay - "much prettier in person".! And is IS!
Also includes a card with photograph of the school & brief history. It is the Second Edition - last year was First - and featured the old Mattie Beal Home. A few of those remain available. Very nicely done, good remembering of Lawton/school history and if Santa ain't leavin a diamond bauble in yer stocking.....this would make a good stuffer for that fav LHS grad!!!!

In 2009, Matthew Spradlin, son of '55 grad Bobby Spradlin and wife Stona, co-wrote a graphic novel called "Bad Kids Go to Hell". There are a total of four issues which turned out to be the best selling graphic novel of 2009.
Matthew is now in post production of a movie by the same name, which he is directing . It was filmed at Spiderwood Studios in Utley, Tx outside of Austin and various locations around Dallas. You can google that title and see a trailer.***
It stars among others: Cameron Deane Stuart of the " iCarley " TV series: Ben Browder of the " Stargate SG-1" TV; Judd Nelson from " The Breakfast Club" and "St. Elmo's Fire"; also Ali Faulkner and Marc Donato.
Depending on the distributors schedule, they hope for release sometime in 2012.

btw.... Bobby is taking ME to the Academy Awards, so don't ask!

LHS grads Wayne Cox, '51, and Clinton Herring, have just been inducted into the Texhoma Racers Hall of Fame along with a friend and another driver for Clinton, Joe Farley. Clinton raced (actually drove the cars) for a few years and then turned the driving task over to Wayne Cox and eventually Farley joined them. Herring stayed active as car 'owner' and worked in the pit crew. He says he is still out at the Lawton Speedway every week-end (during racing season) with his son Greg. They are currently running an "open wheel car". Good read in Sunday Constitution, November 13, page 8-C.
Always heard those guys were 'fast' but I didn't know they were talking about cars! ahahha Congrats guys!
Photo from Lawton paper: Wayne on left - Clinton right.

In same paper, page 5-C, Herb Jacobs continues with headline stories from Lawton sports in 1958 and 1959. So many names you will recognize....Larry Waller, Larry
Ray, Stuart Tonemah (deceased), Babs Yarmuk, Ted Owens, Richard Killian, Julie Ashlock.

The #1 TOP story of 1959
- "The LHS baseball team made history by earning the schools first State Championship." Goes on to say...."The Wolverines landed six players on the 12 man all conference team - pitchers - Jerry Boucher, David Hillis; shortstop Oscar Pickering (deceased); 2nd base Billy Dayton (deceased); catcher Ray Tillman; outfielder
Gale McCray."
MY year, MY classmates - way to hustle guys! (little sports lingo there).


Help me sing Happy Birthday to a BIG turkey...hhahahhahaha. My bother George Gill was born on Thanksgiving Day and every few years it lands on T-Day again. This is the year (24th). Also Dee (Vanderpool) Glass shares her special day with my brother! Sorry, Dee.!!!!
Kidding, love them both. Happy Birthday guys!


'59 classmate Jerry Boucher let me know that his wife Mary Ann (Martin), '61, has been diagnosed with a blood disorder and has gone to MD Anderson in Houston for tests. This was on the 11th. I have not had an update.

So sorry to report the passing of J.B. Ridgeway, 77, of Carlsbad, NM. JB passed on November 6 in Lubbock, TX and a Memorial Service was held on November 9 in Carlsbad.
JB was LHS class 1952. He is survived by his wife Dorothy (Lowry); two sons; a daughter; a sister Janell Jones of Lawton. Numerous grandchildren and extended family.
Extended obit and guest book at:

Also passing, William A. Lee, 55, of Lawton. William passed on November 9 and services were November 16. William graduated "with honors" with LHS class 1974.
Extended obit and guest book at:

Please join me in keeping classmates in your prayers - those with illness and those who have lost loved ones.


Regards to all ..........Georgia
......LHS News......
Originally sent November 9

Breaking News (literally)..... Lawton, America got a really good 'jolt' last Saturday night as the strongest earthquake ever experienced in Oklahoma, said 'hi'! Upgraded from a 5.2 to a 5.6-7, and from what I am being told, rather a 'shallow' quake at some 3 miles down.
A quake earlier in the day registered some 3.+ and we didn't feel it. But this one at 10:53pm - also centered around Sparks, OK in Lincoln County - rumbled on southward to Lawton.
Understand it was felt as far north & east as Wisconsin! I was sitting at my computer & thought Bill was behind me trying to shake me out of the chair, I turned, no Bill. That's when I saw the rest of room 'moving'. Does startle one! Lasted about 5-6-7 seconds. Cell phone circuits immediately busy, did get some land lines to family. Spoke with friends on Sunday who live (as crow flies) just about 8 blocks north of us...they said, knocked things off cabinet and stuff out of bookshelves. As far as I know, no serious damage in our area & no one hurt. Was some structural damage of significance around Shawnee. A 'not common occurrence' for us - good conversation item!

What was so bizarre, had just opened an email from Murdoch Matthew with link to earlier quakes in area. And just then, viola!~

Classmate Charley Crabtree at Norman sent this text to Murdoch literally as we were emailing...

"Yep, we had one last [in] October. We just now had another one. It was 5.2. It really shook. My daughter in the SF Bay Area had a house party for her 45th birthday, and they felt a 3.5 in the early morning. The site near Oakland has been active for a week, little 2.0s and 3.+s almost daily. Bad enough the land goes up and down (you develop strong calves walking in SF), it won't stay still!"

And friends were sending emails fast & furious from and back to Oklahoma.....
Charles Darling in CA is a 'veteran' of quakes, wrote...."Sounds like you are experiencing a "swarm" of earthquakes. Sometimes they come in clusters and that fits with your description.
Probably going to experience some aftershock activity...usually not as bad as the original quake."

NOTE: Were numerous after shocks closer to the epicenter! Pretty good one - 4. - in Meeker.

Larry Joe Thompson was in local movie theater and people were startled trying to figure "what was that?"

Murdoch also added this note: "In my day, cracks in the ceiling plaster were all from artillery fire at Ft. Sill. Then there was the time that shrapnel from a mis-aimed shell hit Mike Banks's house in a NW Lawton suburb and a piece struck his wife's hip as she rested on a sofa. (Mike must have been class of 47 or so -- he was the first-chair-first trumpet player in the boys' band while I was a member, 1946-1947. Leonard Roe was second-chair-first. I was third-chair-third.) Have fun. What next?" time I want a 'ride', will open an email from Murdoch! They make my computer chair rock 'n roll!

And on Monday, storms came in, we did get some good rain but tornados all over the area. Great film of a tornado dancing across the Wichitas - shown on News 9 in OKC. The pestilence continues!

Sorry, made a goof in last news. Had Gale McCray living in Dallas area, when in fact, he lives in Ft. Worth area. that GPS.

Pat (Burris) Dean, '56, wrote that she and hubby Paul went to the playoff games in St Louis. Then some of their boys - they have 5 sons - and Pat went to the World Series games. Pat said it was her second World Series, but game six was "best of all games". She added...."Fun, but very tired. I may be getting old!" Naw!
Pat is married to Paul Dean, Jr., son of major league pitcher Paul Dean and nephew of the great Dizzy Dean.
Back in the day, Pat & Paul hadn't been married long & we all lived in same apartment building for a while. Lot of fun and longtime good friends.

Good news from Tommye (Boudreaux) Hobbs, '52, that hubby Ray's last test/scan showed NO cancer! They have also moved out of the motor home, out of Maderia, and into Granite Bay, CA where they have a lovely 'suite' at their daughter and son-in-laws until a "grannie cottage" can be built on adjacent property. Tommye says..."Granite Bay is on the map, but it is a "bedroom community" between Roseville and Folsom, just east of Sacramento. Summers should be a tad cooler here and I am hoping that we are slightly above the notorious valley fog line."

Sing 'Happy Birthday' to Judy K. (Matthews) Johnson on 11-11-11.!!!


Jimmy Dean, class '62, had a carotid artery stint implanted last week & as of last report was doing well & headed home for lots of R & R. He has also battled diabetes for years. Jimmy is married to Karen (Wright), a '65 grad of St. Marys in Lawton. They live in OKC area.

Very sorry to report the passing of Janet 'Jan' K Armstrong, 64, of Dallas. Jan passed on November 4 in OKC. She was LHS class 1964. She is survived by a brother James D. 'Jim' Armstrong of Lawton.
Grave side service will be 2:00pm, Thursday November 10, at Sunset Memorial Gardens in Lawton.
Extended obit and guest book at:

So sorry to report the loss of Beverly F. (Haymon) LaGrone, 79, of Lawton. Beverly passed on October 31 and services were November 4 in Lawton. Beverly was LHS class 1950.
She is survived a son Linden; two daughters, Candy and Denise; numerous grandchildren and extended family. Her husband Harold LaGrone preceded her in death in 1990.
Extended obit and guest book at:

Also passing, another of our 'Golden Wolverines' and longtime Lawton business man, Harold W. Wilson, 90. Harold passed October 30. Harold was LHS class 1938. He is survived by his wife of 71 years, Dorothy (Kuntz); son Dr. Gary Wilson; daughters Lynda Kaye Haire & Patti Rhea; numerous grand and great-grand children; extended family. Harold is also uncle to classmate Trellys (Wilson) Erwin.
There was a Memorial service on November 6 and a private burial service.
Very long obit (interesting) and guest book at:

Please join me in remembering all these in your prayers.


Waiting to see if the 'earth moves' anymore in Lawton, America! Sit tight! Regards to all, Georgia

Thursday, November 10, 2011

......LHS News......
Originally sent October 31

Someone planning to visit Lawton inquired and received info from Ed Harp and Jim Reynolds that LHS alums still meet every Tuesday morning at 9:00 in the cafeteria at Memorial Hospital for coffee/breakfast and a visit. All grads welcome and if need any additional info, call Charlie Fatum as I was told he is there every Tuesday!
This is 'group' that used to meet at the Wildcat Cafe inside Ramons Flowers. Sadly, the Wildcat is gone!

'59 classmate Ed Adams writes that the Fall colors in LeFlore county are really beginning to show. The drive along the Talimena Trail and Hwy 270 in South Leflore are very colorful. He invites everyone over. Ed says.... Poteau - Heavener - Hodgen to the Talimena drive then west to Talihina.

Wedding bells and congratulations for LHS grad(s) and the current Mayor of Lawton, Fred Fitch, '65, and Natalie Higgins, '76. They tied the knot on October 21 at the Palmer House in the 'windy city' - Chicago!

Tommye Hobbs, '52, had an automated response telling all that she & Ray, '52, are now 'homeless' and staying in their RV at the Madera (CA) Fairgrounds with no Internet connection. Ray has several more weeks of doctors appointments before they can complete their move to the Sacramento area. She gives a phone number if anyone needs it, email me.

Murdoch Matthew, '49, and I have emailed several times back & forth & I recalled the TV show Murdoch used to host - Kid's Corner - over KSWO TV here in Lawton. I told him I wrote to him one time & he sent me a piece of his original 'art-work'. A hand drawn picture of a duck! I was in grade school at the time & I kept it for years but do not know what happened to it. To make a longer story short, Murdoch was just so kind to mail me several 'posters' he did for a puppet theater in Bloomington, IN back in the '70's & '80's. Just great and so reminiscent of the art work I received & remembered from many years ago. Since I am a BIG Halloween collector, I especially like one called the 'Witchy Broom'...spider & all!!!!

'60's classmate Gale McCray played baseball at LHS - played left field, played on 1959 State Champion Team. Gale, who lives in Dallas area, sent info on an interesting event coming up soon....the Tarrant County College, NW Campus, Senior Education Program presents 'Celebrate America with Baseball and Apple Pie', on Friday November 18, 11:30am - 2:00pm.
There will be nachos, Texas BBQ, and of course apple pie! Gale will be part of the entertainment - 'Gale McCray: One Man Looks at Baseball'. Gale says his part will be some poems, some songs, and memories of when he first started playing baseball in 1949 on McKinley street (in Lawton, America) with Tommy and Johnny Bateman and others. It sounds fun and if you are in the area and want to attend, you can get more information by contacting: Kathy Saburn, (817) 515-7199.

Once again, Herb Jacobs in his Sunday sports column talks about the '50's at LHS, Cameron, and Lawton muni. Reviving Top 10 lists from Lew Johnsons columns of 1956 and 1957, excerpts from column of December 10, 1956 feature names: Barbara Waid, Don McFarland, Harvey Coombs.
The #1 story of that column/list...."LHS football team won 10 of its 11 games, shared the Boomer Conference title with El Reno and was named states top prep team in all the polls."

The Top 10 list of 1957 has names: Jerry Moon, Ron Hartline, Bob Yingling, Brent Morford.
And the #1 story of that column/list was,
"Hartline stole the show by capturing out-standing player trophies in three all-star games during a 15 day span in August."

Also, "[Billy] Higgins was boys winner and [Babs] Yarmuk captured the title in Boomer Conference tennis championships. Higgins also won the state Junior Jaycee title & earned a trip to Santa Monica, CA."

"Sid Ahlschlager of LHS was named to the All-State baseball team, giving the Wolverines a representative on that elite squad for the sixth straight year".
If you can get the article - a good one, page 5-C, October 30, Sunday Constitution.


Been difficult, but, I have managed to not eat all the Halloween treats, so will be tending the door tonight for the little intruders! Weather has slight 'crispness', clear, so should be a beautiful fall evening!
I love Halloween and always remember the fun and excitement of the school carnival at Washington - especially the Spook House - and then trick r treating all the way home!
Happiness IS finding 5 Milk Duds in one of those little individual boxes, when it's usually just 4. See....doesn't take much to keep 'getting older' people happy!

Halloween trivia.....on October 31 in....

1898 - candy corn is produced by the Goelitz Confectionery Co of Fairfield,CA. Now known as the Jelly Belly Candy Co. [does anybody really like candy corn?]

1926 - Master Magician Harry Houdini dies on October 31 from a burst appendix.

1946 - Pres. Harry Truman reports a mysterious knocking on his bedroom door and in a letter to his wife, declares the White House to be haunted! [I'll say!]

1966 - Charlie Brown first utters, "I got a rock", when trick r treating in the TV special, 'It's the Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown".

2000 - Trunk-or-treating: kids receive candy from the trucks of cars gathered at a school or church parking begins to catch on as advocates tout safety. [bummer]

2010 - Belleville, IL: bans trick r treating for kids over the age of 12.

Wishing you nothing but TREATS this All Hallows Eve....eerie regards.... Georgia