Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Good News for Mary Harrison

By Jane Cobb

Thanks to all. Mary's news is an answer to prayers. Only had to repair and not replace mitrah valve.

Unfortunely had to go all the way in to find that out! Expecting full recovery.

Thanks everyone for their prayers. Must have prayed good ones!!


Monday, August 30, 2010

Mary Harrison to Have Surgery

By Jerry Gaudet

Jane Cobb (Thornhill) brings us word that Mary Harrison will undergo open heart surgery tomorrow, 8/31, to repair a valve problem. She is expected to do well and will have an extended recuperation. Cards would be a wonderful encouragement.
Mary Harrison
3722 Seaforth Dr.
Charlotte, NC 28205

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Words Mean Things

So do monuments.

Take for example one of my favorites; a statue of a confederate soldier….standing right smack dab in the middle of the main street crossing the Potomac River leading into Alexandria Virginia from Washington DC.

His body language is unmistakable.

His back is to Washington.

It was erected in 1889 and It’s a minor miracle that the statue is still standing. First of all, the middle of a very busy street can be hazardous to statues. It’s been knocked down a couple of times in traffic accidents. Secondly, being a bedroom community for the nation’s ruling class and bureaucrats who are seemingly Hell bent on getting rid of everything we were taught was good about this country (Christianity, Freedom, Liberty, Marriage, The Constitution, etc) getting rid of a Confederate soldier with his back defiantly turned to Washington would seem to be a “no brainer.”

But, there he is….as someone once said….”standing like a stone wall.”

Maybe, the message is just not nuanced enough for the “smartest and brightest” in and around Washington . It must be that they “just don’t get it.”

Just like they can’t understand why we average Americans are outraged by the proposed “Mosque Monument” named “ Cordoba,” which in Islamic symbolic terms, means "Islamic rule in the West"……at ground zero.

I have a plan; since NASA’s new role in this current administration is not to explore outer space anymore, but to foster Muslim self esteem….and to help our anointed ones in Washington understand the meaning of at least one of those monuments, I propose that the Confederate soldier’s pants be lowered on the statue in Alexandria.

This should send a message that even our anointed ones in DC can understand….and at the same time get our country back in the “moon shot” business.  -Ed

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Bob Welch Passes

Jerry Gaudet sends this sad news:

It is with great sorrow that we learn of the passing of Bob Welch, husband of our classmate Karol Broadwell Welch...

WAXHAW -- Mr. Welch, age 76, died Tuesday, August 24, 2010, at Presbyterian Hospital in Charlotte, NC.
The funeral will be at 10 a.m. Friday, August 27, 2010 at Higher Ground Church, with Pastor Steve Jacks officiating. Burial will be at the Waxhaw City Cemetery.
Born in Charlotte, NC, Mr. Welch was a son of the late Sylvester Arthur Welch and Margaret Hughes Welch. He graduated from East Mecklenburg High School in Charlotte and retired from Ciba-Geigy Chemical Company. He was a member of Higher Ground Church and a dedicated servant of the Lord, doing volunteer work within the community. He had a great sense of humor, enjoyed cooking and traveling and was a member of the Bojangle's Band of Brothers in Waxhaw.
Surviving are his wife of 48 years, Karol Broadwell Welch of the home; his daughter, Vickie Welch Pierce of Fort Mill; and grandchildren, Zachary, Jacob and Rebecca Pierce.
The family will receive friends from 6 to 8 p.m., Thursday, August 26, 2010 at Higher Ground Church.
The family suggests memorial contributions be made to Higher Ground Church, 8365 Possum Hollow Road, Fort Mill, SC 29707; or to Waxhaw UMC Men, P.O. Box 9, Waxhaw, NC 28173.
Messages may be made at www.wolfefuneralhome.com. 

Published in Charlotte Observer on August 25, 2010

We have this contact information:

Mrs. Karol Welch
8326 Viking Dr.
Waxhaw, NC 28173-8973

Email rhwelch33@yahoo.com

Saturday, August 21, 2010

The Belk Bull

In her great book about the history of Charlotte, Mary Kratt mentions that the Belk Mansion (where Presbyterian Hospital is now) once featured farmland and a large pasture where cattle grazed. Of course, it’s hard to imagine bovine beasts roaming that now busy area between Presbyterian and Mercy hospitals, but I can personally verify that fact. I remember it.

We used to walk past that pasture every Saturday morning on our way to the Visualite theatre to see the Kiddie Show, featuring the latest exciting serials…as well as a feature film; sometimes a double feature. Jimmy Weller, Pat Parker, Earl Pope and I were attending Elizabeth School during those years, and the walks from the lower part of East 5th Street provided us with a lot of time to discuss…..whatever 8 or 9 year old kids talk about.

The most exciting part of our journey was always after we crossed Caswell Avenue (Georges Grill would later be built on that corner which, at the time was part of the Belk property.) As I recall, the pasture extended almost all the way up to just across the street from Saint Johns Church.

And Inside the fence surrounding the pasture was what was to be the Belk's last farm animal at that location……a bull!

One thing we “knew” even at our young age about bulls was……they hated the color red. Earl had heard somewhere that the reason bull fighters use red capes is because bulls hate the color red. So we made sure we never wore anything red to the kiddie show. Apparently it worked, because the bull seemed to make a habit of ignoring us.

Then, it happened.

One Saturday as we walked by the pasture I suddenly realized the argyle socks I was wearing were predominantly red! And it was too late to turn back. I was sure the bull would attack me and the offending socks at any moment. That was one of the longest half block walks of my life.

But I was lucky that day. The bull apparently didn’t notice my red socks because he just continued ignoring me.

It wasn’t long afterward that the bull and the pasture disappeared to make room for more “citified” structures. I remember my Daddy telling me that so much construction was going on in Charlotte that by the time I was grown, it would probably look like New York City.

Oh, he told me one other thing; that bull was really a cow.


Saturday, August 14, 2010

Hot Summer Evenings in Charlotte

By Obie Oakley

With all the hot weather we have had this summer, I am reminded of some very special evenings I spent growing up in the late forties.

We lived in Chantilly which is bordered by Commonwealth Ave., Briar Creek, the Seaboard Railroad Tracks and Pecan Avenue. This was a mostly blue color neighborhood where we all knew our neighbors and enjoyed doing things together. A couple of special evenings I remember in particular had to do with watermelons and ice cream. (The chapter on ice cream to follow later).

Do you remember the watermelon lots over on McDowell Street between the Alexander Hotel and Sweet Daddy Grace’s Church? The sellers would have straw spread on the ground and the watermelons were lined up according to size, shape and color. We always preferred the stripped ones over the solid dark green ones. There would be lights strung, much like today’s Christmas tree lots, and along the back would be soft drink boxes where they would ice down the melons should you want a cold one. (A cold one had a different meaning back then)!

Word would spread that there was going to be a neighborhood gathering to eat watermelons and in the late afternoon, us kids, barefooted of course, would pile in the back of Frank Farrell’s old Chevrolet pick up truck and head out to get the right one(s) for the evening. We would spread out trying to help select the ones that were just right. Of course we would have to “thump” each one to make sure it was ripe. I guess I knew what I was doing because I still thump melons.

The adult would pay for our trophies, which probably cost in the 25 cents range and we would head back to the neighborhood where we would make a grand entry much like Caesar entering triumphantly into Rome.

When we got back folks would have make-shift tables set up made of boards running along saw horses where the watermelons would be sliced and laid out for the taking. I remember also that different folks had preferences as to the best way to slice a watermelon. Some sliced them lengthwise and then into chunks while others sliced them across the girth which left rinds looking life half-moons once eaten. There would also be knives and forks, paper towels and the thing I cannot eat a watermelon without….salt.

Eating a watermelon also involved personal preference. Some would slice away the row of seeds leaving only the fruit. Some used only a knife while others also liked to have a fork. Kids did it the “old fashion” way, eschewing utensils altogether.
Some teenager would inevitably organize (?) a watermelon seed spitting contest much to the delight of everyone.

At a time when there was no air conditioning, no television and money was always tight, I can think of no more special way to spend an evening. On the other hand now that we have air conditioning, television and some discretionary coins, I still can think of no more special way to spend an evening
-Obie Oakley
 (photo at top of Obie and Fluff, circa 1948)

Thanks Obie!  I hope others will send in some of their memories of the times we all shared growing up in Charlotte. -Ed 

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

From Pocatello, Idaho to Mint Hill

By Jerry Gaudet

We continue to celebrate CHS’54 with our 23rd “Let's do lunch” program held on Tuesday, August 10, 2010. “LDL” is held on the second Tuesday of each and every month at "Jimmies" in Mint Hill.

Marlene (Ritch) Beaty led us through our usual program format in splendid fashion. We’re very fortunate to have a bevy of Mavens to set a pleasant atmosphere for our lunch gatherings.

Many of our classmates are “regulars” at the “LDL”s, having attended many of our lunches. We’ve had 90 different people participating at one time or another.

And, it’s so nice when someone gives “LDL” a try and we get to add them to our attendance list.
Sylvia (Dunn) Cross came through the Belmont Tunnel from Mt. Holly to be with us.

And, to top it off, Ellen (Abernethy) Bates came to lunch from Pocatello, ID (That’s Idaho), a far piece. A check of an Internet mapping program show that to be 2,130 miles…all just to be with us. Isn’t that nice? Ellen gets the prize for coming
the longest distance (Oh, sorry, Ellen, we don’t 
have any prizes).

Whether near or far, plan to join us next month, September 14. We will look forward to your being with us. And even better, call a classmate and suggest that you meet at Jimmies!

Wednesday, August 04, 2010


It's that time again!

This Tuesday (the second Tuesday of the month) will feature another fantastic LDL event at the legendary Jimmies of Mint Hill.

Jerry Gaudet has sent a blast email out to all of our "plugged in" classmates.

At this very moment, Jimmy and Ronnie Pourlis and their staff are working overtime to make our gathering special and memorable (as they always do).

All of us Wildcats are invited and encouraged to bring as many friends as you like!!  -Ed

 On the second Tuesday of each and every month, CHS'54 does lunch!
This month's "LDL" (Let's do lunch) will be held on

Tuesday, August 10, 2010, 11:30 AM
at "Jimmies" in Mint Hill.

- JG