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Fort Atkinson Alumni Newsletter (PDF)


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									                   Fort Atkinson Alumni
              Memories of Then! - News of Now!       Vol. 4, No. 13

New readers:
Judy (Rude) Rusch (Cambridge HS "62") - wife of the late Jim Rusch (FHS 59)
Almayrene (Hacht) Reinthaler (54)

E-mail address changes:
Harriet (Hevey) Chwala (42)
Mary (Rockwood) Nausadis (61)

Winds, storm down trees, lines
The first storm of spring rumbled across Jefferson County on Wednesday, toppling trees and downing power

“It was more dramatic than damaging,” Donna Haugom, Jefferson County emergency management coordinator,
said of the storm.

Numerous downed trees and limbs were reported; however, damage to structures was limited, she said.

Jefferson County had severe thunderstorm warnings and a tornado watch, but no tornado warning during the
course of the storm. One of the most dramatic impacts of the storm was a semi tractor-trailer that was
overturned on Interstate 94 due to the high winds.

A total of 3,900 We Energies customers from Watertown to Fort Atkinson lost power during the storm. All had
power restored as of this morning.

Editor could use your input for the newsletter! Those that write something for the newsletter are pleasantly
surprised when they hear from folks that they used to know in the halls of Fort High! Write something and
let the rest of the readers know that you're still around! You might hear from a long lost "flame".

Editor's note: Another infestation of insects in Wisconsin to go along with our Ladybugs and Box Elder bugs!
Easter Sunday saw our home in Cambridge covered with "Cluster Flies". The lawn within 10 feet of the house
was crawling with them. At first I thought they were houseflies but they didn't look quite right and didn't act like
house flies. Sooo, I did some searching on the internet and found out what they were. Maybe you have them
too? See: http://www.pestproducts.com/clusterfly.htm

          Editor got a whole bunch of material about Lein's Motel from Betty (Lein) Perkins (54)

          I'll put the information and pictures in this and the next two editions of the Newsletter.

                                  The first installment is the history of motel.

Betty writes:
In December of 1929, after 11 years of farming in the "Albion Prairie" area of Dane County, my parents, Lloyd &
Myrtle Lein and my brothers, Vern & Bob, moved to Fort Atkinson. They purchased a small 28.6 acre farm
between Fort Atkinson & Whitewater.
Much of it was marshland and under 3 feet of water! However, there was a house and enough "highland" in the
front area toward the highway for them to start building a "tourist court" and a filling station in 1930. A relative
had sent them a post card on a trip out west with the pueblo style buildings on it and that's how the style of
architecture was selected. It was another 18 years before my parents saw this style of building "in person", on
their first visit to Tucson! They were constructed of red hollow tile with 2 coats of stucco on the outside and
plaster inside. They were tan in the early years with a rough finish and had a white, smooth finish in the later
years. This construction made them very cool in the summer, warm when cooler weather came and well
insulated against noise. Two individual farm "electric plants" provided the electricity until the power line was
extended from the Star School property 1/4 mile north of the cabins. Dad had to sign a contract agreeing to pay
$3.50 per month for that electricity (Wouldn't we love a bill like that these days?) We always had our own well
for a good water supply. The filling station was opend on Decoration Day, 1931 and the first cabins on July 3rd
of that year. It cost $1.00 per night if you had your own linens and $1.25 a night if they were provided. Mom and
Dad never charged more than they were willing to pay when they traveled. Even in the later years, rates were
very reasonable. We had much "repeat business" and the Weirs, from Chicago, spent every weekend with us
for many years. They later moved to the Fort Atkinson area too.

Seven years later there were 10 completed cabins and the other 10 were added in the 40's. My Dad did all the
building himself, the masonry, electric, plumbing, etc. And my Mom actually sewed all the awnings for all the
buildings, made curtains, etc.
I'm sure my brothers helped a lot in the early years, before I can remember. I was Dad's "helper" when he built
the last 8 units.
Mom and I did most of the painting of the interiors of the cabins. It was done on a rotation basis so a few were
redone each year. Mom did all the laundry right there at the motel and most of the cleaning by herself until
around the late 40's when they began to hire 1 or 2 people to help her. I especially remember Lillian Belzer,
Freda Buckingham and Mrs. Johnson helping her. There were 32 beds in the 20 cabins by then! That's a lot of
laundry every day.

The large shady lawns with an ample supply of lawn furniture and picnic tables were a welcome feature all
throught the years. Most of the time the motel opened up a couple of weeks before Memorial Day and closed a
couple of weeks after Labor Day.
That also enabled them to be "snow birds" after their first visit to Tucson, AZ in 1948. They sold the motel in
1958 to the Celebrons of Rockford, IL. They also sold 18 aces of the farm land to their neighbors, Mr. & Mrs.
Onnie Bernard (parents of Jeannine (Bernard) Larson (61) around that time. The motel was later sold to the
McCords and I believe that Kent has determined that the property is still owned by their son.

In 1959 my parents began construction on a large home on 2 1/2 acres they still owned, just north of the motel.
They lived there several years - in the summertime. They also built a home in Tucson at about the same time. I
can't say that my parents ever really retired. They did a lot of traveling adn they were always busy with church
work and "helping out" their friends and family.
They lived to be 94 and almost 98 and were married for 76 years.

Hi Kent
I will be flying to Fort Atkinson tomorrow (Thurs., March 31) and staying until next Tuesday, April 5, and
hopefully will be taking care of some things for my mother, who will be 92 this year. She still lives on her own.
I may be interested in hiring someone to look in on her and take her shopping, etc. on occasion. I anyone is
interested, please call me on my cell (559) 284-7621 or at her house Thursday evening through Monday
evening -- 563-9831.

My recollection is that March/April weather is not great. If you have any influence or know anyone who does,
please schedule good weather while I am there. We have had enough rain in California to last for the next few
years--though not as much here in Central California as they had in the LA area. Would prefer sun on
arrival. Ed note: Complied as best I could with sun and 50+ degrees in the afternoon - windier than heck,
Judy (Sampson) Lund-Bell ('57) Fresno, CA

Fred Wetzel (55) writes from Burlington, Iowa

Nancy (Blasing) Hacht (Jefferson HS Grad), wife of Arnie Hacht, died in Las Vegas on 3/20/05. Arnold
"Arnie" Hacht (55) died on 3/09/05, also in Las Vegas, less than 2 wks earlier. She died of cervical cancer; it
doesn't give Arnie's cause of death.
I remember talking with him at the last reunion and if I remember correctly, he had some respiratory problems
but was still smoking. I'm sure it's our classmate because the names of the children check out. There will be a
prayer for both at Trinity Lutheran Church at 11:00 on Friday, 4/01/05.

Another obit mentioned the sudden, unexpected, death of Atty. Robert Bull, the son of Orrin & Midge Bull on
Monday, 3/21/05 at the Milwaukee County Courthouse. He left a wife and 3 kids, was only 44.

Ed note: Condolences may be sent to Orrin and Midge Bull at: 315 Meadow Ct., Fort 53538

Sarah (Pfafflin) Jett (62) writes from Munds Park, AZ

Hi Kent,

As always, I thank you so much for your hard work and dedication to the Newsletter. I would love to find out
sometime, how many old friends have been reunited because of your efforts. I would guess, just judging from my
own experience, it would be in the thousands. What with the mini-reunions our 1962 class has had in Vegas
these past three years, I have renewed friendships with 11 former classmates and because the pictures and
small items in the Newsletter get others to thinking about us, I have visited with 2 more when Joan (Tutton)
Charest was visiting Cheryl (Sartorius) Feller an hour or so from here. We had a wonderful afternoon of catching

As I have told you before, my son Chip Jett and his wife Karina are both professional poker players. In
December, they started a column "Ask Chip and Karina" in Cardplayer Magazine.

I got an e-mail from Chip today and the column is now being published on the internet when each new issue of
the magazine comes out, (twice a month) so the content will change every couple of weeks. There are also bios
of both of them that you can click on; then each bio gives their own web address. Chip's web page has been up
for quite some time. My husband, Mac, bought the address and Mac's partner, Ray Lindstrom, built the site and
did a great job. Karina's is just getting started but it has a super picture of her on it, showing what a beauty she
really is. Here is the address:


Hey, Kent!
It's really been a wild two and a half weeks since I happened to meet Leigh (Luebke) Cole ('60-Boulder, CO) at
Eddie Sandvold's memorial service in Boulder. One email led to another and then phone calls and Saturday
movies after dinners. Never would have
believed it.

Today we're sitting in MauiOne (a cybercafe) soaking up the sun and warm temps on Kaanapali beach on the
west shore of Maui.

We decided it would probably be better to keep things under wrap after what had come out in the newsletter
speculating about others. Had to bite my lip when both Stewart Frisch ('58-Las Vegas, NV) and Tom Allen ('58-
Alexandria, VA) called a week or so ago.

Kent, I wonder if you suspected something as you seem to enjoy uncovering stuff like that.

Well, maybe you were right. On the other hand, according to my calendar, it's close to 4/1 and people should be
warned of the silliness which may prevail on such a day.
Gotcha! <g>

Dick Kutz '58-Lakewood, CO
                                               Medical Corner
Update on Allison from Karen (Zimmerman) Smith (62)
Hasn't been an update for a while because there was nothing new to report. We appreciate the concern of those
who inquired while she was at home. While she was home we got all the little stuff moved out of her apartment.
Thanks to the Girl Scouts and friends who helped last Saturday. A few of her friends came to the house last
Saturday for a belated birthday celebration. She has gained 15 lbs while she was home - ate like a horse and all
the time! She feels really good except that she gets tired and usually took a nap in the afternoon. She has gotten
back to some reading and being on her computer. Dad was able to network it so she could use our Road Runner

Allison is back at Scott & White in Temple for her second round of chemo. Met with her Oncologist this afternoon,
before she went to her room, and the plan hasn't changed. Methotrexate - high dose for the chemo. They are
looking at changing from Dilantin to an alternate with less interaction with the Methotrexate to ward off any
seizures. Guess they are beginning to think about THE WHOLE PATIENT. She is in room 661. Direct phone is
(254) 724-3661. Call her - she is bored already. She is scheduled to receive her chemo on Thursday followed by
flushing it from her system. The plan is that she will be in the hospital at least through Saturday. She tolerated
the first round very well and hope the same for this round.

Thank you to those of you who sent something to her benefit account. It is gradually growing and will hopefully
help her make her car payments in the months ahead.

Thanks to those who helped with the search for a sensitive skin central line dressing. We found Sorba View
2000 and are trying it. The Scott & White clinic in Waco is going to stock it for us and their other patients with
sensitive skin. Don't know about the hospital.

Wally, Karen & Allison Smith       (254) 666-6064


Editor got a note via "snail mail" from Norma Bickle.

She wrote:

Hi Kent,

We don't get your newsletter but I know the word about Wayne's (52) health was in it last December. He
received cards from Classmates thruout the United States. So, we'd like the following sent out to say Thank
You! - It was much appreciated!

"Everything started November 3rd when infection had crept in the left foot. Because of poor circulation, the
amputation had to be done just below the knee. We were finally released from the hospital on December 17th to
go home and continue the healing process. Then, on Christmas Day, we noticed the exchange bag from
Peritoneal Dialysis was dis-colored, so off we go to see the nephrologist. The results from the blood tests that
were done showed diabetes, most likely caused by stress and trauma. On January 2nd, we were sent home
learning about diabetes, insulin, and a completely new diet.

Wayne is doing much better. He, much sooner than expected, now has a prosthetic leg. With the help of
therapy, he is able to walk with a walker. We are both looking forward to Spring when Wayne will be able to be
on the go again.

We want to say thank you to all who have remembered and showered us with cards and prayers. We know that
was what gave us the strength and courage for a successful healing."

Wayne (52) & Norma Bickle
1518 Rangita St,
Fort Atkinson, WI 53538
(920) 563-2932

Dick Tollakson 1952, Mesa, Arizona writes:
Down here in Mesa, Arizona it is time to plant our tomato plants. This is the first planting of tomatoes for the year.
It is also time to plant the first crop of sweet corn. The flowers of all kinds are in full bloom all over the Valley of
the Sun. Everyone has been picking all kinds of citrus in our area.

How is the Midwest crop of snowballs doing back there ? We have hung up our jackets for the winter and we
are now in short sleeves, with our temperature in the 70's, just in case you in the Midwest wanted to know. Now
we are waiting for the warmer weather so that we get back to our 6 to 15 % humidity.

Now for our local road news! All over in the Phoenix area including all of the Valley of the Sun, they have been
putting down a layer of rubberized coating on our roadways, including the freeways in our cities. It is made from
old tires, so this is a good way of getting rid of them and making the surface super quiet. It is unreal on how quiet
it is when you go from the old style road surface to the rubberized.

Ed note: Somebody sent the following but can't remember who.

Thinking about "fender skirts" started me thinking about other words that quietly disappear from our language
with hardly a notice. Like "curb feelers" and "steering knobs." (I have one now and they were called Hugger
Knobs, you could steer with one hand and hug with the other!) Since I'd been thinking of cars, my mind naturally
went that direction first. Any kids will probably have
to find some elderly person over 50 to explain some of these terms to you.

Remember "Continental kits?" They were rear bumper extenders and spare tire covers that were supposed to
make any car as cool as a Lincoln Continental.

When did we quit calling them "emergency brakes?" At some point "parking brake" became the proper term. But
I miss the hint of drama that went with "emergency brake."

I'm sad, too, that almost all the old folks are gone who would call the accelerator the "foot feed."

Didn't you ever wait at the street for your daddy to come home, so you could ride the "running board" up to the

Here's a phrase I heard all the time in my youth but never anymore - "store-bought." Of course, just about
everything is store-bought these days.

But once it was bragging material to have a store-bought dress or store-bought bag of candy.

"Coast to coast" is a phrase that once held all sorts of excitement and now means almost nothing. Now we take
the term "worldwide" for granted. This floors me.

On a smaller scale, "wall-to-wall" was once a magical term in our homes. In the '50s, everyone covered his or
her hardwood floors with, wow, wall-to-wall carpeting! Today, everyone replaces their wall-to-wall carpeting with
hardwood floors. Go figure.

When's the last time you heard the quaint phrase "in a family way?" It's hard to imagine that the word "pregnant"
was once considered a little too graphic, a little too clinical for use in polite company. So we had all that talk
about stork visits and "being in a family way" or simply "expecting."
Apparently "brassiere" is a word no longer in usage. I said it the other day and my daughter cracked up. I guess
it's just "bra" now. "Unmentionables" probably wouldn't be understood at all.

It's hard to recall that this word was once said in a whisper -"divorce." And no one is called a "divorcee" anymore.
Certainly not a "gay divorcee." Come to think of it, "confirmed bachelors" and "career girls" are long gone, too.

I always loved going to the "picture show," but I considered "movie" an affectation.

Most of these words go back to the '50s, and before, but here's a pure-'60s word I came across the other day -
"rat fink." Ooh, what a nasty put-down!

Here's a word I miss - "percolator." That was just a fun word to say. And what was it replaced with?
"Coffeemaker." How dull. Mr. Coffee, I blame you for this.

I miss those made-up marketing words that were meant to sound so modern and now sound so retro. Words like
"DynaFlow" and "Electrolux." Introducing the 1963 Admiral TV, now with "SpectraVision!"

Food for thought - Was there a telethon that wiped out lumbago? Nobody complains of that anymore. Maybe
that's what castor oil cured, because I never hear mothers threatening their kids with castor oil anymore.

Some words aren't gone, but are definitely on the endangered list. The one that grieves me most - "supper." Now
everybody says "dinner." Save a great word. Invite someone to supper. Discuss fender skirts.

Someone forwarded this to me, and I thought some of us of a "certain age" would remember most of these.

IRS announces the 2005 "Dirty Dozen" (It's that time of the year! April 15th will be here before you know
The Internal Revenue Service has unveiled its annual listing of notorious tax scams, the "Dirty Dozen,"
reminding taxpayers to be wary of schemes that promise to eliminate taxes or otherwise sound too good to be
The "Dirty Dozen" for 2005 includes several new scams that either manipulate laws governing charitable groups,
abuse credit counseling services or rely on refuted arguments to claim tax exemptions. The agency also sees
the continuing spread of identity theft schemes preying on people through e-mail, the Internet or the phone,
sometimes with con artists posing as representatives of the IRS.
"The Dirty Dozen is a reminder that tax scams can take many forms," IRS Commissioner Mark W. Everson said.
"Don't be fooled by false promises peddled by scam artists. They'll take your money and leave you with a hefty
tax bill."
Involvement with tax schemes can lead to imprisonment and fines. The IRS routinely pursues and shuts down
promoters of these scams. But taxpayers should also remember that anyone pulled into these schemes
can face repayment of taxes plus interest and penalties.
Persons who suspect tax fraud can call the IRS at 1-800-829-0433.
The Dirty Dozen
Following is just the list of the Dirty Dozen. For descriptions of each and information on how to avoid being a
victim, go to: http://www.irs.gov/newsroom/article/0,,id=136337,00.html
1. Trust Misuse
2. Frivolous Arguments
3. Return Preparer
4. Credit Counseling
5. "Claim of Right"
6. "No Gain"
7. Corporation Sole
8. Identity Theft.
9. Abuse of Charitable Organizations and Deductions
10. Offshore Transactions
11. Zero Return
12. Employment Tax Evasion
Other scams sill lingering
The IRS removed four scams from the Dirty Dozen this year: slavery reparations, improper home-based
businesses, the Americans with Disabilities Act and EITC dependent sharing. The agency has noticed declines
in activity in some of these schemes. But taxpayers should remain wary because the IRS has seen old scams
resurface or evolve.
Also, the IRS reminds taxpayers to be vigilant about cons that may not be on the Dirty Dozen list. New tax
scams or schemes routinely pop up, especially around tax time.

Who receives the Fort High Alumni newsletter?
Those who graduated before 1950 and others (Jefferson Co. Union, Hoard's museum, etc) - 52
1950 - 16
1951 - 33
1952 - 19
1953 - 22
1954 - 32
1955 - 43
1956 - 70
1957 - 84
1958 - 77
1959 - 74
1960 - 59
1961 - 67
1962 - 68
1963 - 72
1964 - 78
1965 - 58
1966 & following years - 92
FAHS Teachers - 21
+ Forwarded and printed out for others - ???
=1016+ as of 3/31/05

                       From the Newsletter of 3 years ago - April 2nd, 2002

More wonderful memories from George Gullikson (61)


On Saturday mornings, a group of us kids would go to the library and watch free movies. Sitting on the
basement floor, we saw movies that today would be called "documentaries". Although they weren’t like real
movies, with heroes or villains, it did allow us to see how life was in other countries. Down the hallway, to the
other end of the basement, was the Museum. Zida Ivey was the curator. Mrs. Ivey was always reading, and if
you were to ask her a question about anything to do with Fort or the surrounding area, she would find an item or
a book that would answer that question.

Then there were theaters: Uptown and Fort. Movies were first a dime, than 12 cents, followed by 15 and then
skyrocketed to a quarter and 35 cents a little later on. There was always a cartoon followed by "Eye of America"
with John Cameron Swayze, sometimes a short, like the "Bowery Boys" or "The Three Stooges". The Uptown
had a popcorn machine that you had to hold a bag under while it automatically filled, the Fort’s was better
because it was freshly made. Candy was also available; my favorite was Jujubes and Milk Duds. In 1954, I saw
the movie "The Creature From The Black Lagoon", at the Fort Theater. It was the scariest movie I had ever
seen. Halfway through the movie, a guy dressed up like the creature came down the back exit hallway and
made loud creature-like noises. Me and about 50 other kids headed out the front entrance screaming. The
owners came out laughing and told us it was just a joke and we should all come back in to watch the remainder
of the movie. Jerks!

Prior to Fort having their own swimming pool, we would take a school bus to Bartle's Beach in Lake Mills. Mr.
Stark would slowly drive and not to mention, as my dad would say, "why in hell does he go the longest way."
Once at the beach, we would go to the window in the large white building and pay 10 cents to rent a wicker
basket. These baskets were numbered, with a matching numbered safety pin. After you changed into your
swim wear, you would return your basket, with your clothes and towel back to the stand. The changing room
had a real high ceiling where pigeons would roost. Stored on the rafters was a long boat that I later learned was
a rowing scull. Being the curious kid I was, after my 3rd or 4th trip there, I decided to take a closer look at that
boat. Using one of the wooden benches, placed against the wall, it worked as a ladder from which I could easily
get to the rafters supporting the boat. These rafters also had a plank that extended the full length of the
building. Once my curiosity was satisfied about that boat, I walked along the plank to the other end of the
building; the area above the girls changing area. "What are you doing up there, you something" (I didn’t
understand the word), "get down from there right now". I did, and was then met by the lady who checked our
baskets at the concession stand. She was really mad and kept calling me that word. In fact she continued to
call me that word each time I picked up my basket on returning trips that year and the next. Years later, my wife
and I stopped at the restaurant at Sandy Beach, where at that time, she worked as a waitress. Looking at me in
that "wrath of a woman expression", she said in a seething voice, "I remember you". I haven’t been back to Lake
Mills since.

The purpose of these trips to Bartle’s Beach, were for swimming lessons. Classes with names like, tadpoles and
guppies were assigned to your inability to swim. I soon learned that they had no idea who was riding the bus, so
if you didn’t show up at the beach, you didn’t have to learn to blow bubbles in that really cold water. Instead I
would run over to the channel that connected the bay to the lake. Invariably, I would run into some Lake Mills
boys who had a made a raft out of oil drums There we would push the awkward vessel into the bays shallows,
where the water was much warmer, full of lily pads and if you tried to stand, you would sink up to your knees in
black smelly muck and worse, usually covered with leaches; that is where I learned to swim…I had to.

What was interesting about this bay was that there were a lot of white rowboats moored offshore; much like
sailboats are secured today in marinas. On our weekend trips, it was common to see couples rowing these
boats on their way to the two picnic areas located on the lake. Men did the rowing, were usually dressed in
suits, women in dresses with small umbrellas to shade themselves. Today when I see paintings by Monet or
Renoir, they are reminiscent of those times at Lake Mills.

My parents would always take us to festivals and fairs. Lake Mills had their Ice-cream festival in the square.
There they would have jugglers and acrobats. Deerfield’s included a horse-pulling contest. However, the best of
them all was the Jefferson County Fair.

Where most of the city kids spent their time on the Midway, I spent my time in the barns with the country kids.
There they were always grooming and washing their 4H projects: cows, pigs, and sheep. There were only a few
people who brought horses to the fair; Connie Klement and Susie Bowler were from the class of "61". Those two
girls were the only 4H kids that didn’t eat their projects after the fair was over. [That statement will get me some
Emails!] I was always envious of those kids who were able to stay at the fair for the whole week, sleeping with
their animals, and celebrating their victories in the show ring. The white barns that housed the livestock were old
and rickety, but that was all part of the nostalgia. The best building was the poultry barn with its menangerie of
squawking chickens, ducks, and geese. Almost every cage had a blue or red ribbon; there weren’t any losers.
The grandstand with the wooden seats was something very special. On a stage setup on the track in front, there
would be the contests for 4H kids like the feedbag dress competition. Back then, besides burlap, some grain
bags were made with regular material that dresses and curtains could be made from. They looked as good as
store-bought items.

Ralph’s park was located only a few blocks from our home at the end of Jefferson Street. Although they had a
teeter-totter, a slide and a merry-go-round, I spent most of my younger years playing on the huge piles of dirt the
city dumped in their efforts to fill in a low area full of runoff water. In the evenings, there was always softball
practice or scheduled games. I was the "batboy" for the Jones Dairy Farm team. During practice, I was allowed
to catch the balls hit over the fence; that didn’t happen too often, they weren’t a very good team.

The highlight of the summer at Ralph’s park was the arrival of the carnival. Arriving early in the morning, there
was a mad scramble to get all the rides and concessions set up for the evening performance. I was always able
to get some job to do, which paid very little, but made me feel like I had some importance to that frenzied
activity. Through these encounters, over those years, I was able to meet some gypsies that were responsible for
the driving of the trucks and the setting up of the rides. Although they probably weren’t real gypsies by definition,
their nomadic ways mirrored that lifestyle. On weekend evenings, the Midway would stay open till midnight. On
those evenings, I would sleep on the couch on our front porch and listen to the carousel’s pipe organ. The
sound of that music, mixed with the laughter of people at the carnival, epitomized summer in Fort.

The city’s Ice-Cream Social was held at Barrie Park. There was a shelter where the band played marching
songs. There were different contests that people could participate in; my favorite was the milk-drinking contest.
Dick Lescohier’s dad won one year by drinking 11 pints of milk. Even after that feat, he was able to talk without
blowing white bubbles. I was impressed.

On the Southside of Fort was Jones Park. There they played baseball - serious baseball. I didn’t get over there
that much, but I do remember the fountain, the chained swings that were attached real high in the oak trees and,
the merry-go-round that you could make go real fast. There were also the Quonset huts, ("Fertile valley" for
returning Vets from WWII) which at the time I didn’t understand why people lived in a park, and I’m really not
sure I do today. This was the location of the Labor Day fireworks. Lying on your back on a blanket in the
outfield, the display was always a great spectacle, however, it also signaled the end of summer and the
beginning of a dreadful school year.

To any kid reading this story of how life was for us kids back then, I’m sure they would think we must have been
bored to death. However, I was always up at dawn and on my way to another summertime adventure, which
seemed to be endless back then.


                            From the Newsletter of two years ago.
Nancy (Kurtz) Becker (60) wrote:
Hi Kent: After enjoying the weekly newsletter for the past year and a half I decided that it was time I also
contributed something. (Couldn't take your pleading anymore!) Life since graduation has been quite diversified
and interesting - too much to go into in length, so here is a nutshell account. Over the past 40+ years I have
had a variety of jobs including department store work, a stint as a surgical nurse, christian education director for
a church and what turned out to be my favorite, my current position as IMC (Library) secretary at good old FHS.
I am in my 18th year at the school and still love coming to work every day. Each day is different and I love
working with high school students. My extra duties include being the head Forensic coach and the Drama
Director which means I direct the Spring play. In between everything I sandwiched in a 23 year marriage and 3
children. My oldest son was born in 1966 and I had to give him up for adoption. At Thanksgiving time in 2001
he came back and found me which made my youngest son as happy as I am since he always wanted a brother.
Alex (Stageman) was adopted by a doctor and grew up in Michigan where he lives now. He is 36 and works as
a corrections officer at a medium security prison outside of Sault Ste. Marie. Will (Becker) is 26 and teaches
radio production at Madison Media Institute. He lives in Oregon, WI - like his mother, he's not fond of living in
cities. My daughter, Amy Becker, died in 1993 in a car accident.
     You had a wonderful idea with this newsletter, Kent. You have reunited a lot of classmates who have not
seen each other in many years. This is the case with Bonnie (Agen) Smith, Sylvia (Olsen) Bahling and myself.
We have exchanged Christmas cards but it took the newsletter to motivate us to get together again. Bonnie and
I were talking about that over lunch at Spoon last week. (Excellent recommendation, Kent. Food was awesome;
fresh, presented beautifully, and Chef Rolf is a very interesting man. Menus change with the seasons so stop in
again.) Have been telling everyone I know to go have lunch or a "special occasion" dinner there.
   Another surprise in the newsletter was when I read about you meeting Roger and Kathy Sweet in Wisconsin
Rapids. Kathy was my matron of honor and they have been friends for years but, as happens when people move
away, we lost touch. Now, thanks to you and email we can touch base again.
   Anyway, let me add my thanks to you for the great job you are doing. We all appreciate it.    Nancy


Yvonne (Stannard) Carl (57) wrote:

  First of all, I'd like to echo the many words of praise that have been sent your way. The newsletter is sure a
great tool. It helps jar loose the memory cobwebs that belong to lots of the "older" classmates. It is fun to recall
the "olden days".

   I recall when the Malin boys moved to Fort, Marty! They moved in a block and a half from our house. Their
parents were certainly God blessed with a ton of patience to deal with that crew of boys. Marty was a great
addition to our basketball team, too.

    But it was the next year that we really went to town and went to the state tournament. I am sure Jean Hoard
remembers having to deal with many, many hoarse voices in speech class on Monday mornings. We screamed
our lungs out in support of our team. Those were the days of riding the bus to the game. Not many of us had
access to cars back then. When one did come available we had to go through the inquisition in order to be
allowed to ride along with the gang.

   Talking with Loren Ehlers one day I learned that I had come over to the high school from "the other side of
town". Barrie School was the new one then. But, we all had the same schooling advantages. We had Forrest
Perkins for gym.....Mrs. Kjellenberg also. Betty Gordon taught us how to sing. We had Mrs. Frey for a school
nurse. And then we have to remember eating all those goiter pills. Did they do their job? No one ever
questioned them giving them to us....we just simply did what we were told to. We played jacks during
recess.....hey, I remember that as I was good at jacks! We built forts in the snow way out in the back of Barrie
School. Jim Corrigan and George Dailey sure were good at getting snow down your back and then getting away
before getting clocked! Ed Sandvold's Mom used to have us out to their house to see the new chickens at the
nursery. Plus, Ed was an early favorite as his Mom could really bake some cool stuff. YUM! Karen Abendroth's
Mom was such a brave lady. She took the bunch of us on and became our Girl Scout leader......long
term.....forever. And, she was good! We all walked to school and everyone picked everyone else up along the

    Junior High was really a change for all of us. Being thrown in with kids from all over was the beginning.
Bessie Powell was the math teacher. She pinched the kids if they were caught talking or copying. She is the
one responsible for me being stuck in Laura Wagner's classes in high school. Oh, I begged to have my parents
go to the school and see if I could be put in an easier class. Looking back.....Laura Wagner was hard to beat!
Mr. Merriman was always in charge of that main room it seemed. I never had him for a class, but he sure made
sure I kept my mouth shut in "his" main room. Mr. Eulberg (sp) was our science teacher, as was Mr. Wade. I
liked Mr. Wade. Jake threw an eraser at me one day because I dropped my pencil during a test and I wasn't
supposed to bend down and get it back! Guess I had good reflexes as I ducked just in time. We had a pretty
good basketball team in Jr. High already. We did our cheers on the stage in the main room.

    The high school had 70 minute periods at that time. Not conducive to wiggle kids. Sure had some great
teachers at that school. Mr. LaHann for chemistry, Jean Hoard for Speech, Mr. Radtke for Biology, Mr. Coulter
for history to name a few. I loved typing class, too. I was pretty good at that and so I was one of the few that got
to go in the little office at the back of the typing room to type on the new electric typewriters!! That was exciting,
boy! Doug Vogel sat next to me and he kept a smile in my life. He wasn't very serious about typing and so what
he was serious about was having fun. Judy Gustafson and I were table partners in Biology. Ask Claude, but I
think we were the only people he knew that could do all their dissections without ever touching the creature
being worked on with their fingers. We were clever and squeamish. There were lots of brave teachers at the
high school. Some of them went along with 30 kids on student exchanges. I went to North Adams,
Massachusetts. I still correspond with members of that exchange. Those kids thought we lived "out West"! The
plays we did were the best and what we had to work with was the gym and the municipal building. No lovely
auditorium for us. We danced in the "cracker box" and had a ball. That was where the band practiced, too. Mr.
Wegner loved Mr. Sousa and we played lots of Sousa. Somehow we figured out how to be everywhere on
time....even if one class was up in the corner of the old building and the next one was at the other end of the new
building. My locker was down at the "other end of the new building" and lots of people used it to help speed up
their day.....drop off books and pick up new ones.....jackets, etc.

   We ice skated until our toes were about frozen off. Then we walked home! And I lived way up on Hillcrest
Drive by then! The warming shed was great. Remember that floor?? And the wonderful smell of wet mittens
and socks. We attended the baseball games, and the track meets. Girls didn't compete back then, but we sure
could cheer.

   In the summer we went swimming at one of the area lakes. I took swim lessons and went on a bus over to
Rock Lake. I still remember how cold that lake was in the morning. Janet Ott and I got a ton of chiggers from
swimming at Bartol's Beach. We were so thrilled as we talked her dad out of the grocery store truck/van and
Janet drove us over. We didn't stay long that day! Our parents weren't very happy with us and we were even
less happy with being covered from head to toe with those things. Man, do they itch! We went to Girl Scout
camp year after year. Learned to canoe and the basics of life saving. A couple of summers I got to go up to
Pine Lake Bible Camp. Allie Whitford went, too. Boots Anderson did also....I think.

   We had wonderful slumber parties at Sue Wild's house. The beautiful basement in that lovely house was just
the greatest for that. That was where any new dance steps to appear were invented. But, we were ready for all
the proms and formals and after the game dances! Dave Carl, where did you learn to dance so good? He took
me to prom our senior year.

   Oh, this is enough. Marty Malin is the one to blame for this, Kent. He got my memory bank jiggling. Come
on class of '57. There are million more memories.....share. The bike on the top of the flag pole.....things like
that! Share.


                                 From the Newsletter of one year ago
                                      Barb Nelson - class of '53 - wrote:

In response to Karen Sandvold's note about Eddie working at Kent's and how some people would be quite
surprised. I think I know of one. My dad would pick him up between 3 & 4 to make ice cream before school!
Another time after Dad had his heart attack and could not lift heavy cans, with dad's supervision, Eddie, and I
think, Tom Bare made ice cream a couple of times by themselves......Since we didn't have a batch freezer to
make ripple ice cream, one had to pour the mix and the other stir in the ripple, thus we did not make ripple ice
cream that often!
Other memories of Kent's - Hoffman Lumber Company fire - Around 6:30 pm on a Saturday, dad called and said
we had to close the store as the electricity was going to be turned off due to the fire. All the ice cream from the
front cabinets had to be taken into the big freezer. On Sunday it was a beautiful day and everyone came to see
the fire damage and stop by for an ice cream cone! On a normal Sunday we would use about 250-300
numbers. That day it was close to 500 numbers! It took about 45 minutes to an hour in the cooling room to
mellow a 5 gallon can enough so that the girls could scoop it. 10:00 pm is the normal closing time but that day
we closed the store at 9:00 pm. It was a disappointment to some but it was just too hard to go on.

A couple of months ago in the newsletter someone had asked about the time our mother was shot. It was her
birthday. Mom and Dad always saw to it the girls would get to their cars ok after closing time. Mom heard a
noise and asked who's there? No one answered but shot her with a sawed-off shot gun. She walked back in the
store and told my dad "I think I've been shot". He rushed her to the hospital and the surgeons removed about
200 pellets. Some were left in her body. She recovered and had a good life up until the time she passed away
in 1989.

Kent's would close around December 1st and reopen March 1st. After all the ice cream was gone for the year,
for some reason we had orange-pineapple left....which we gave away! Kent, Joan Schremp Fisher was working
for your folks when we purchased the store. She always claims she taught my dad how to make ice cream! Her
favorite snack when going home was chocolate malt ice cream, marshmallow cream and a squirt of malt
powder....am I right, Joan?

Susan and I talk about having a reunion of all the gals & guys who worked for our folks but we wouldn't want to
leave anyone out, since we can't remember exactly all who worked there! It was a great group though and we
thank you all for your very hard work!


Dave Chevalier - would have been (69) wrote:

Aloha, Kent,

My brother Gordy sent me the Newsletter. Although I graduated High School in Green Bay in 1969 we
lived in Fort at the corner of Grove and Fourth Streets from 1956 - 1964. Those were my most formative years
and I have so many vivid and wonderful memories of Fort Atkinson. I was on a bike hike with Mike Black (his
father was named Red Black) out Riverside drive and on to his Grandfather's farm a few miles west of town. His
grandfather was plowing the field with two huge draft horses. It was enchanting to me that in that day and age
someone would still have been farming with real horse-power and old-time rigs with all the leather trimmings.
Riding back to town we saw this huge smoke billowing into the sky from town. We arrived to see the Hoffman
lumber company in blazes. Firemen were even spraying the trees and roofs of houses on the west side of the
street as fireballs threatened to set them on fire as well. I remember explosions that they said were paint cans
going off.

Speaking of fires: Remember when the old wooden railroad warehouses burned down on Highway 26, across
from Greens Barn and between Third and fourth streets? The cops came to my door and told my parents that the
kids who'd burned it down had named me as the ringleader. Fortunately I had a airtight alibi and really didn't
have a thing to do with it - if you're reading this, thanks alot, Billy.

 Remember the Lawton Hotel on the corner of Third and Highway 26? A friend and I threw a water balloon at a
passing car there and it went through the back, open window and nailed one of the four high school kids riding in
that car. They slammed on the brakes and I told my friend to run. He said "I didn't do it" and stayed - and got
punched in the face. I ran for my life through all the backyards, diving over fences as a High School track star
gained on me. The back door of my house was opening and I was almost there when this big, scary high
schooler finally nailed me from behind, pushing the opening door shut in my fathers face. He opened it back up
and I knew I was saved when the guy said "Oh, hi coach". Dad had coached him in football at Saint Josephs.
"He broke my friends glasses" he explained. I think that I had nailed a guy named Hoffman right in the face with
that water balloon and that the guy who'd chased me was named Rick Shackett?

I married a girl from Green Bay and we have lived on Maui for the past twenty years. We own the largest airtour
business in the world. See www.bluehawaiian.com

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