Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Myrtle Beach Fire

Jim Dellinger reports firsthand on the recent fire at Myrtle Beach.

Barefoot Resort - North Myrtle Beach......Just a word to let you know that we have been through what would resemble the firestorm in World War II from the way it affected our neighborhood. We live in Barefoot Resort, the neighborhood affected by the recent wildfire in Myrtle Beach.

Thank God our home was not affected, but we had many neighbors that were. In our community there are about 250 single family dwellings. The recent fires destroyed 70 of those homes, burning them to the ground. Our home was only a 1/4 mile from those that were destroyed. I would appreciate your prayers for those affected.

Jim Dellinger

(My memory may be playing tricks on me, but I seem to recall that on one of our "spring breaks" perhaps it was '53 or 54....we saw some rather extensive "recent" forest fire damage....for miles on either side of the highway leading into Myrtle Beach. But according to the reports I've read, this fire was probably their worst in this century. -Ed)

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Our Amazing.....

....keeper of records and all around good guy, Jerry Gaudet is continuing to recover from cataract surgery. It's taking a little longer than he would like it to, but I'm confident he soon be seeing things as well as he did in 1954.

Meanwhile, our best wishes go out to Jerry.....who continues to keep our class up to date and humming along beautifully. Are we lucky, or what!!

Coach Edelman Recovering

I was relieved, and happy to hear from Coach Edelman last night. He suffered a rather severe stroke in February and only recently left the hospital and entered an assisted living facility (basically the same one his wife Ruth is in).

The Coach says there is still lingering damage (he is unable to write) but only two days ago graduated from a wheel chair to a he's making progress. Also, he sounds pretty much like his normal self on the phone....which is also a good sign.

He regrets that he'll not be able to attend our reunion on the 8th.....but sends his sincere regards and best wishes to all in our class! (Which, by the way, was the class that produced the BEST basketball team that Edelman says he ever coached.....28 and 2!)

Obviously, the stroke hasn't affected his MEMORY !

Sunday, April 19, 2009

One for the Books

I love posting GOOD news on this website!

Peggy and Buck Anderson have a story that's definitely an award winner!

"Buck and I want to share with you our good news. Our daughter Tonya and her husband John, who have been married for over 21 years, are going to be parents in October. Needless to say we were overwhelmed with the news and have been in shock for days. This will be our first Grandchild and we are very happy, not only for ourselves but for Tonya and John."

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Happy Easter from Dan Eichost

Not all of you remember our classmate Dan (Ike) Eichost, but many of you do. (He only attended CHS his senior year.) Dan wrote me to ask if I would send him a copy of the slide show that we'll be showing at our reunion on May 8th since he would be unable to attend the festivities but would enjoy seeing some of the faces (via slideshow) from his days at CHS.

He thanked me for the disc and wished us all a Happy Easter:

"Have a Blessed and happy Easter. Go outside and take in the beauties of nature!

The reason Dan won't be attending our reunion is because he is suffering from stage 4 lung cancer.

Wednesday, April 08, 2009


I still haven't come up with a real good name for short news updates about our classmates.

As I've mentioned, some of the most obvious...and best....modern journalism "headings" BREAKING NEWS.....or NEWSBREAK.....just aren't appropriate for people our age.

I was thinking about calling it, ODDS AND ENDS, but that might be offensive to some.

So, I've decided on calling it, RAMBLINGS............after a long gone classic publication.

In today's RAMBLINGS......

Betty Barnes Walpole suffered a fall following the last ice storm of the winter causing some minor brain damage. She is recuperating well and will soon undergo a neurological test before she would be allowed to drive again.

Betty has also been dealing with her grief over the loss of her husband, Ed, in July of 2008.

If you'd like to offer an encouraging word, her contact information is:
Betty Walpole
220 Club Meadows Ct.
Spartanburg, SC 29302-4217

The "ever upbeat, and supportive" Nancy Gibson Tomlinson says she's going to give Betty a call...

By the way, Nancy, like most of us, can't wait for May 8th. She is determined to be with us come "HECK or Highwater!"

She writes,

"We have to get all of my oxygen here and transport it with us - Dear Lord - don't let anyone hit us on the way - if they do we would not even have time to put our hand on the door handle. We will be carrying a generator and 32 cannisters of oxygen - needless to say we would be an ink spot on the road if we get hit so everybody keep there prayers going that we make it in good form. I just know I am supposed to make this trip so I really am not worried - I'm going to count on having my guardian angel traveling with me also. Love - Nanc"

Thursday, April 02, 2009

Army Salutes Obie!


Man receives Army's highest civilian award

Obie Oakley is more than just a volunteer. The former Green Beret thinks really big when helping out military brethren.

By David Perlmutt Posted: Thursday, Apr. 02, 2009

Obie Oakley just can't not get involved – especially if it's anything military or patriotic.
Twenty years ago, he and two friends raised the money to build the Vietnam War Veterans Memorial in uptown's Thompson Park. He's chaired boards and he's been a prime force behind the Carolinas Freedom Foundation, which puts on the yearly Veterans Day parade.

In 1999, after Hurricane Floyd swamped Eastern North Carolina, and his “band of brothers” from the N.C. National Guard's 20th Special Forces Group (Airborne) helped with recovery efforts. They did the same in Mississippi after Hurricane Katrina rolled through in 2005.
And last year, the brothers raised money to send supplies to Afghan civilians.
Today, for all his tireless work, the Army is honoring Oakley with the Distinguished Civilian Service Medal, its highest civilian award. He'll get it in a 2 p.m. ceremony at Christ Episcopal Church.

“Obie (pronounced AH-bee) is constantly involved with soldiers, whether through the Freedom Foundation or organizations that take care of soldiers,” said retired Army Brig. Gen. Ernest Brockman, who nominated Osborne for the medal. “He's ex-military, and he's driven by the notion that he can honor soldiers by doing things to help them.”

Long military interest

Osborne Oakley Jr. doesn't know how the military grabbed hold of his life.
Growing up in Charlotte, his family wasn't military. He was a boy during World War II, playing Army with his pals on the banks of Briar Creek. He'd see paratroopers from Fort Bragg's 82nd Airborne on liberty and dream of jumping from planes.

After graduating from now-closed Central High, he chose The Citadel for college, not because he came from a long line of Citadel men – he was the first in his family to go to college.
“I needed the discipline and I thought I'd find it in a military setting,” he said.
He found it there and afterward in the regular Army, serving in the 3rd Armored Division from 1958 to '62 in Cold War Germany.

Oakley, now 72, was planning on making the military a career, when his father, Obie Sr., came to Germany to ask him to join the family printing business. He returned in 1962 to help Interstate Graphics grow – and immediately got involved in the community.
He joined the 20th Special Forces (Green Berets). He chaired the Community School of the Arts and the Charlotte/Douglas International Airport Authority.

And in the late 1980s, he and two Charlotte friends, Roddey Dowd Sr. and Tommy Norman – all Green Beret captains who served together in the Guard – decided Mecklenburg needed to honor its 101 natives who were among the 58,000 to lose their lives in Vietnam.
They raised $356,000 and built the memorial between Third and Fourth streets.
“We were in a guard unit that could have gone to Vietnam, but were never called,” Oakley said. “There was a certain degree of envy for those who went. They were doing something for the country.
“We felt that Charlotte ought to show its appreciation for those who served and those made the ultimate sacrifice.”

Team player, big thinker

His Citadel education and Army training taught Oakley to be a team player.
So when Quincey Collins founded the Carolinas Freedom Foundation, he knew to get Oakley involved.
“Obie loves this country and is concerned about the troops and their families,” said Collins, a POW in Vietnam for 71/2 years. “Plus he knows a lot of people and can open a lot of doors.”
Oakley became the foundation's executive director.
The foundation promotes patriotism, putting American flags in classrooms. It supports JROTC programs in high schools.

Yet Osborne can't do enough.

Last year, one of the “band of brothers” had a son serving in the same 20th Special Forces unit in Afghanistan. The son wanted supplies to win the trust of civilians.
The brothers were going to round up a few school supplies. Osborne got them thinking bigger. They ended up shipping 4,000 pounds of blankets, clothing and school supplies to the Afghan people.

Osborne figured out a way to get them there through a Pentagon contact he knew.
“A lot of people say they support the troops, but only put a bumper sticker on their car,” he said. “The troops are doing difficult work and need our active help. They need to know we appreciate them.”