Amy Smith going to Detroit Junior Olympics

Lohn seventh-grader Amy Smith will be heading for Detroit, Mich. next week to compete in the 2003 Amateur Athletic Union Junior Olympics scheduled to run from July 22 through August 2 at Ford Field. Amy, 12-year-old daughter of Paul and Jennifer Smith of Pear Valley will be competing in gymnastics on July 24-29. She has been attending gymnastics school in Brownwood for two years and competed in Indiana last year. Construction on the new school building was begun several weeks ago and is progressing nicely. The new building, when completed, will house 10 classrooms, offices and a cafetorium, and will be quite a bit larger than the old 1934 building. The contractor is presently pouring footings; foundations are being poured in sections. The foundation for the stage in the cafetorium on the north side has been poured as well as the classrooms on the west side. As of this Wednesday, half of the foundations will have been poured. The 2003-04 school year begins in August so it will probably be after Christmas before the building will be ready for use. Everyone is excited and looking forward to its completion . The new building will be a great asset to our school district and the community. If you have noticed the bare wall in the tabernacle where the photos and histories of communities in the Lohn Valley were hanging there is reason for their being removed . They are undergoing an up-grading with new mats and frames. Betty Hill made a very timely suggestion at the last annual meeting that frames be made from wood removed from the old ’34 building. The Ag boys did that and sold quite a few. Enough wood was salvaged to make frames for the histories and they will be made by Lohn native, Larry Lohn, of San Marcos. He has a frame shop where he and his wife, Carol, mat and frame antique labels and advertising when they have time from their full time counseling and teaching jobs. Rama Huie has devoted time to re-typing the histories and bringing them up to date. The original stories, matted but never framed, were used about 15 years ago when Heritage Day was held in Brady and McCulloch County communities had booths. Having the photo and story in one frame will enhance the appearance of the display. We hope to have them back on the wall soon. Lt. Derrick Bobo and Michelle Allen’s wedding shower on Saturday July 12 attracted a large group and the couple received many practical and lovely gifts. A George Forman grill was a gift from the ladies who hosted the shower. Derrick and Michelle have set a wedding date for Saturday August 9. The ceremony will be outdoors at the Reed Farm under one of the very old oak trees gracing the back yard. Derrick and Michelle are a fine young couple, a credit to their families and both will be serving their country in the U.S. Air Force. Derrick is a great grandson of the late George and Laura Horne Reed and the grandson of Klein and Celeta Reed. His mother is Anna Reed Campbell of San Angelo. Klein and Celeta’s other grandchild, Tanya Swenson, graduated this year from Lohn and has been taking college courses this summer. She has enough credits to be a sophomore when she begins classes this fall at Angelo State, majoring in government. Tanya has her sites set on law school and a career as an attorney in criminal law. Barbara Daniel enjoyed a visit from youngest son, Mike, over the July 4 holidays. Lyle and Elliot Daniel and children were here for a visit as well. An interesting couple from Tyler, Del and Eunice Shirley, came to Pear Valley and Lohn recently seeking information on Del’s family. They visited with Rama Huie and then came to see me. I was unable to be of much help to them as the family histories they sought date back almost 100 years. Del’s grandfather or maybe his great-grandfather was J.W.Shirley, a farmer who lived two miles south of Pear Valley, helped build and was pastor of the Pear Valley Baptist Church in 1904. A history of the church, written by a former pastor, Don Connaly, in 1960, had been given to me by Sadie Lohn and I was able to supply them a bit of information. J.W. Shirley pastored the church from 1904 until 1906, then returned to the pulpit in 1913-1914 and again in 1916. Other family names they sought information about were Easterwood, Parker, Underwood and Hutto. The Easterwoods also lived near Pear Valley and the picture in our 1990 cookbook of the Broadmoor school taken in 1911 show both Shirley and Easterwood children as students. One of the Shirley boys, Willie Lourice, married Elvira L. Underwood. They had five children. Their eldest son Ralph may have lived in Brady at one time. Del Shirley lived in Coleman in his youth. Eunice Shirley is from Brady, Neb. Dorothy Slaughter Kleumper came and visited with them. They were interested in the history of Pear Valley and Broadmoor. The couple was enroute to Amarillo and hoped to call on Sadie Lohn who might be able to give them additional information. Coming up on July 19 is the Snodgrass Family reunion at the tabernacle. On July 20 at 2 p.m. is the Justin Solsbery-Laney Chandler shower. The congregation of the Lohn Baptist Church enjoyed a fish fry Sunday after the morning service. The fish were caught by E.W. Frost and his brother-in-law, Paul Hill in Lake Brownwood. E.W. and Wimp Short were the cooks for the occasion. Denise Matlock and Kristen came from College Station for the week end and helped Polly prepare the fish for cooking. Jewell Hill was out for the service and lunch as were special guests, area missionary, Roy Epperson and his wife from Ballinger. We had a power outage on Monday night just before the full moon came out and it was very, very dark. With only a few candles to dispel the darkness, I thought of how it used to be before electricity came to this area in 1936 when we only had coal oil (kerosene) lamps to light our homes and shed light for studying or as it was called ‘getting up our lessons.’ A large percentage of students lived on the farm, rode the bus, which might be a lengthy trip, and didn’t get home during the short winter days until it was nearly dark. No time for studying, had to change from our school clothes into everyday clothes to do the work outdoors, eat supper, then a time to study before going to bed. Some how we managed to see by those lamps, but what a blessing that we no longer have to do so. Anyone whose ‘roots’ lie in the soil will identify with and appreciate the following taken from a church bulletin’not exactly biblically correct’but is a fitting description of someone we know. It is entitled ‘So God Made A Farmer.’ ‘On the eighth day, God looked down on his paradise and said, ‘I need a caretaker.’ So He made a farmer. God said, “I need somebody willing to get up before dawn, milk cows, work all day in the fields, milk cows again, eat supper, then go to town and stay past midnight at a meeting of the school board.’ So God made a farmer. ‘I need somebody with arms strong enough to wrestle a calf and yet gentle enough to play with a grandchild; somebody to call hogs, tame cantankerous machinery and sit up all night with a newborn colt. I need somebody who can shoe a horse with a hunk of tire, who can make harnesses out of bailing wire and scraps of feed sacks, somebody who, during planting and harvest, will finish his 40-hour week by Tuesday noon, then put in another 72 hours.” God wanted somebody who would race across bumpy ruts to get a load of hay in before it started to rain, yet leave the load standing in the field if he saw a neighbor needed help. So God made a farmer. God said, ‘I need somebody who will plow deep and straight and not cut corners, somebody who will seed, weed, feed; somebody to disk and plant and tie the fleece and strain the milk and replenish the self-feeders. I need somebody who, after a hard week’s work, will drive 20 miles to church, somebody who will bale a family together with the soft, strong bonds of sharing, somebody who will laugh, sigh, and then reply with smiling eyes when his son says he wants to spend his life doing what Dad does.’ So God made a farmer!

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