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Class Of 1962 Celebrates Six Decades During Weekend Reunion

Members of the Water Valley High School Class of 1962 celebrated their 60th reunion during the Watermelon Carnival weekend. The group includes (front row, from left) Dianne Stone, Ellie Harris, Sandra Quinn, Jenny Williams, Jeri Cardwell, Sadie Hodge, Ann Puckett and Joy Windham; and (back row, from left) Henry Dale Fly, Van Perkins, Mickey Shoemaker, Breck Brown, Larry Hart, Lamar Harris, Jacky Clements, Jim Gholson, J.W. White, Larry Lambert and Dorsey McCay.

WATER VALLEY – The memories flowed Friday as members of the Water Valley High School Class of 1962 shared tales that ranged from indoctrinating a new coach to stories about one of the fastest cars in town.

  Nineteen members of the Class of 1962 gathered at the First Presbyterian Church’s education building for fun and fellowship.  

The class was the first to graduate in the “new” high school building on Market, even though construction wasn’t complete and it would be the following school year before class was held in the building. 

“We had to walk on boards,” Joy Windham recalled.

Jacky Clements’ family operated the Kool Kone Restaurant, located on Central Street where Defer’s Service Center is now located.

“Most of these people spent a lot of time hanging out at the Kool Kone,” Clements said about his classmates. They would hang out in front of the building or play pin-ball inside.”

“And we had a party or two there,” Clements added.

Larry Hart recalled a  fishing outing with a new football coach, Charles Peets, at Enid Lake. They took the coach to run some trot lines.

“We got a new football coach right around 1962 and two or three of us fishermen wanted to take him out. We had some trotlines out on the backwaters,” Hart explained. 

The coach readily agreed and the group loaded up in a boat. Hart added that either Breck Brown or Ed Newman was running the boat. After checking their lines, they were having so much fun they didn’t want to quit. 

“Hey, are we going to check our ‘other lines’?” Hart asked, explaining “other lines” were those set by someone else. “They said yeah, why not,” he continued.

The group were checking one of these lines when they heard a nearby boat motor crank up. “And here they came,” Hart continued, “The folks that owned the lines. We indoctrinated Coach Peets early in his career here,” he added with a chuckle.

“I never got over the embarrassment of that,” Brown added.

Hart also recalled a classmate, Hugh Wright, who caused a big ruckus one day.

“They caught him smoking down in the boiler room – eventually,” Hart said. 

The story goes that Wright was in the boiler room and turned the main water off. The water in the boiler continued to heat and resulted in a big fire alarm.

“We had to go outside and hold hands,” Hart said.

Next the group talked about Dianne Stone’s 1951 Chevrolet car that shuttled many of them during their high school years.

“It would hold up to 20 people,” Stone said.

“She was the first drag racer out on 315,” Windham added.

“A lot of people won a lot of money on my drag racing, but I never had money to bet,” Stone noted.

The group ended the night with a commitment that the 60th reunion will not be their last.

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