Abilene High School Class of 1961

May 20, 2006

“Remember When”, submitted by John Marshall, AHS 61

Filed under: Abilene High School — johnodam @ 9:13 pm

Very good, go to, double click:       http://www.marycy.org/remember.html


May 8, 2006

“Our Town… Flag Story” by Nell Anne Walter Hunt, AHS 61

Filed under: Uncategorized — johnodam @ 6:06 pm


                                                                  By Nell Anne Walter Hunt


         Since my responsibility of being Irving’s Resident Flag Lady is looming in the near future, I knew I needed to get myself mentally ready for this year’s Great Flag Caper for the Fourth of July.  Although my blood perpetually runs red, white and blue, this year has been a tough one for our Country, and I felt that even I needed a little patriotism jump- start. 

     One of my favorite things to do is to go to Presidential Libraries, and I have toured several memorable ones.  I have never been to the Carter one and with “Georgia on my Mind” I headed for Atlanta last weekend.   Accompanied by my friend who taught Government for many years, we toured the Jimmy Carter Presidential Library in Atlanta.  It was very interesting, but the adjoining Carter Center was the most fascinating of all.   The purpose of this Center is to promote peace all over the world by encouraging and overseeing democratic elections in countries where democracy is a new concept.  With the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and many others, they are also eradicating terrible diseases in Third World countries.  Their work with Habitat for Humanity is legendary, and both President and Mrs. Carter spend one week a year actually helping to build homes themselves with other volunteers.

     Our next stop was Jimmy’s hometown  of Plains (population 675).  Arriving on Saturday night, we discovered the one block long Main Street was blocked off by hay bales, and a band called “June Dogs” was playing.  Everyone in town (including the Carters) was square dancing.  They invited us to join them, and we had the peculiar honor of dancing with the President in what I imagined to be a potential Norman Rockwall painting.  Because the B & B was full that night, we were invited by the Carter’s minister and his lovely wife to stay in their beautiful 160-year-old home. They showed us pictures of their trip to Oslo with the Carters for the awarding of the Nobel Peace Prize.  The gracious Southern hospitality extended to breakfast complete with grits.

      On Sunday Jimmy Carter, as is his custom, was teaching Sunday School in the Maranatha Baptist Church.  There were 500 people from all over the world crowded in like sardines into the small sanctuary to hear the former President teach.  President Carter built all the cribs in the church, and Roslyn frequently helps in the cleaning duties of the church.  They are very dedicated to the work of this church and help support the church’s mission work around the world.  His lesson was on Ecclesiastes 3:  “For everything there is a Season….”  He spoke of his days in the Navy and of his favorite teacher.  The teacher, whom he called Miss Julia, taught them always to remember  that “Everyone must accommodate changing times but cling to unchanging principles.”  She also told her students in that small country school that she felt sure that one of them would grow up to  become president.  I believe Miss Julia would be proud that her prophecy came true by someone who always remembered her words.

     When we arrived back at the huge, crowded  Atlanta airport and were sitting in the Food Court having a cup of coffee waiting to board our plane, we heard from down the massive terminal people clapping and cheering.  Like The Wave at a football game, the sounds came closer to us, and suddenly we saw that marching down the terminal toward the gates was a battalion of young (oh, so young) American soldiers proudly marching to their plane to be deployed.  We, too, rose to our feet and applauded with tears in our eyes, and we continued to do so until they were far out of our sight, but not out of our hearts and minds.

     Tomorrow I mail my letters about the 2006 Great Flag Caper.  I want this to be the best one yet.  After all, Miss Julia said we should cling to unchanging values.




Filed under: Abilene High School,Uncategorized — johnodam @ 3:28 pm

May 2, 2006

Abilene High School: Post from Karen Wiggins in Africa

Filed under: Uncategorized — johnodam @ 2:17 pm

 The Roar of the Lions
 by Karen Wiggins


 As a child, I remember picnics in Abilene, Texas,  with the sound of a lion roaring in the back ground.  I  remember experiencing anger and not fear. The cruelty
of the imprisonment of that poor lion was extreme to  me.  How could they keep that pacing lion, king of the jungle, in such a small cage?  He could barely turn

Yes, one could hear the roar almost everywhere in
 Abilene as small as it was at that time.

 Twenty years later, I would bring my class to the Los  Angles zoo on field trips.  I taught school in Pomona,  California, for 11 years. The first place my class would go was  the African section of the zoo where the lions lived. We had to walk fast.  If we just looked as we went, we would not make it to Africa before it was time to turn around and go back home.  "We're going to the Zoo, Zoo, Zoo!" was my favorite thing to play on my guitar and sing in preparation for the trip. The lions there were much better off than the one in Abilene. Now these lions were up town.  They had  built an environment for those lions….like you do.  A big cave like area was a good  shelter, a large area to walk around, and even water to cool off in.  They had 
no bars.  Just great crevices between the lions and my class.  We loved those field trips.


Now I am on my best field trip ever– Bunda, Tnzania, in East Africa!  Bunda is a Sukuma word for  'little lion'.  In the 1950's my new town had families of
lions covering the rock filled hills. This was about the same time that I was worrying about the  Abilene
Lion in the little cage. Should I try to sing my
Zoo song to children here I would have to change it to "We live in a zoo, zoo, zoo"  The children here do not even know what a zoo is.  When elephants have a sweet
tooth and come into their village to eat the
casava roots, the kids are fully aware that the animals are free and not behind bars.

 How majestic the lions look in the Serengeti. They  just lie in the grass looking at us as we drive by.  When I look up and around into their environment, it
looks like West Texas without any fences.  Well, not so much as Abilene is now but how it was when I was small.  Even the coming rain smells and feels like
a rain did coming in Abilene.  First the dusty smell comes as the distant rain cleans off the dirty leaves on the mesquites, (Yes there is something here that looks just like the mesquite trees) then comes that sweet, clean smell, then the splash on your face. 
One of the things that I missed when I was not is
Texas was the sky.  The lions on the Serengeti see
this same spectacular sky.  In Texas and here, the
 sky is the star.  When a storm comes you see it way before 
it arrives.  In the rainy season, here the sunsets
 happen 360 degree.  We are up on a kind of plateau  and  we walk the entire circle to see all the degrees of color in every direction.
> >
> > I am not sure that that old "Second hand Lion" In
> > Abilene lived long enough to live in the Abilene
> Zoo
> > are not, but living here makes me feel that I have
> > freed that poor old lion.
> >
> > Rev. Charles and Karen Wiggins host mission field
> > trips to Bunda, Tanzania.  Dentist trips pull
> teeth,
> > doctors bring equipment and help out at the
> Lutheran
> > Hospital, Builders build churches, road repair
> persons
> > repair roads, ministers give bible studies,
> teachers
> > bring books for the library and visit schools and
> some
> > just give general aid to economy to various
> churches.
> > The trip includes a safari through the Serengeti.
> You
> > get to Kilimanjaro Airport and we get you to Bunda
> and
> > back. For more information call Martha Albright,
> Vice
> > President of the One Book Foundation about a tax
> free
> > trip for a group.  Send a self address stamped
> > envelope for a brochure.
> > Martha Albright
> > Phone 479 442-9975
> > e mail  mpalbright@cox.net
> > Address  1910 Old Wire Road
> > Fayetteville, AR 72703
> >
> >
> > __________________________________________________
> > Do You Yahoo!?
> > Tired of spam?  Yahoo! Mail has the best spam
> protection around
> > http://mail.yahoo.com
> >
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