Archive for Thursday, May 1, 2003

After all these years

Class of 1958 reminisces at 45th reunion Saturday

May 1, 2003

The Eudora Rural High School class of 1958 was special, said reunion organizer Elizabeth Woods.

"We're just a close group," she said.

Case in point, all but two surviving classmates made it to Saturday's 45th reunion at Eudora City Hall, and Woods attributed much of that to the effort of classmate Phil Everley.

"Phil will call us, even if we're in Timbuktu," Woods said.

Looking back on other monumental graduation anniversaries, the 45th seemed a good time to get together, Woods said. After all, on the 10th anniversary, "everybody was in Vietnam or getting married," she said.

On display at the gathering were mementos of high school days like basketball team photos, Elvis Presley records and scrapbooks that contained tassels, cards and other graduation memorabilia.

Perhaps the most unique artifact, however, came from Pat (Kelley) Eisenbarger, who began piecing together blocks for a class quilt her senior year in high school. The quilt, which Eisenbarger estimated took two or three years to complete, contains the names of the 1958 graduates as well as their teachers. Eisenbarger gathered material for the quilt from sewing projects done in Mrs. Slapar's home economics class.

"We always say we never wore any of the clothes anyway," Eisenbarger said. "I'm hoping everyone will recognize their part of the quilt."

The foundations laid at Eudora Rural High School paved the way for graduates who pursued varied interests including farming, education and music, and the class also counts retired long-time Douglas County Register of Deeds Sue Neustifter among its ranks.

The class also has the distinction of graduating the first married couple, Henry and Caroline Starkey, in an era when one of the partners's usually did

Woods said the ease with which the classmates dated one another openly without jealousy or hard feelings was another demonstration of how special her graduating class was.

"There's a real feeling of camaraderie and friendship," she said

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