Cow business wasn’t as good as it looked

Graduation exercises are on top at 8 p.m. Friday (tonight) for the Rochelle seniors of 2001. It’s kind of unusual that the Rochelle Class of 2001 has 18 seniors, and the class 80 years ago, 1921 also had 18 seniors. It is also strange that I know more of the 1921 class than the 2001 class. I have heard of all of this year’s class. They were in the fourth grade when I retired in 1992. I knew them all then, but in eight years classes change a lot with some moving away and others moving in. I do know Gina Baker and Robert Tetens. In the Class of 1921, the 18 seniors were Velma Burk, Merle Carroll, Inez Chandler (my first grade teach who I liked very much and I was embarrassed one day I called her Mother), Charley Willoughby, Brown Willoughby, Vera Wilson, Raleigh Neal (father of Ralph and Bobby Neal), Arch Gainer (one of my teaching friends), Wesley Gainer, Mark Mitchell (not any kin folks of mine but a good friend); Also Ed Boyd, Burl Guyton, Fred Johnson, Lonnie Cates, Karl Price, Katherine Smith Neal (Don Neal’s mother who had me down on the ranch for a lot of good meals and times), Oma Willoughby Jones (Billy and Johnny Jones’ mother who I was on the museum board with and enjoyed being around her), and Ola Griffay. The Class of 1921 only attended school for 10 years. The 11th grade was added in the 1923 school year, and the 12th grade was added in the 1942-43 school year. Kindergarten was added in the early 1970s. Actually some children today go to Early Childhood and Pre-K therefore attending public school for up to 15 or 16 years as opposed to only 10 years for the Class of1921. Actually, the Class of 1921 and 1922 were combined and most of them graduated in 1922.

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