By Ken Brody
"Better With Age"
I have attended ten TRHS class reunions: six of our own, including the “unofficial” 25th; three for my wife’s class (Lisé Ludwig, ’74); and one with my older sister (Michaela, ’65). As a sociologist, I find these events both curious and fascinating. With time, several patterns emerge.
First, lines of school affiliation begun before TRHS tend to persist even 50 years after graduation. While not absolute, there is a tendency for those who attended Callanan, Franklin and Merrill to “hang together” when the high school class reunites. If less distinct, the same pattern can be seen for grade school affiliation. We are perhaps more comfortable with those we have known longer, and who shared more likeness of circumstance based on smaller enrollment districts.
Second ... status consciousness seems to diminish with time. For many of us, TRHS was an arena of invidious comparisons concerning personal style (wardrobe, appearance, cars, etc.) and accomplishments at school (academics, sports, extracurriculars).
At our 10th reunion (1977), many classmates seemed intent on demonstrating they had “made it” educationally and/or in terms of career. This behavior was less noticeable by the 20th reunion, and has continued to lessen with the passing decades. (Now, many of us compare retirements.)
Third, there are some people whom we first come to know only through the reunion process, itself. Our class was so large that none of us knew everyone at the time; the sub-set of reunion attendees allows for mixing within a smaller sample. Sometimes we encounter people with whom we never before conversed, but with whom we find we have something important in common. These serendipitous meetings give us insight to our own past from the perspective of those who observed us–but did not “know” us–at the time.
Finally, it must be said that most classmates seem more courteous, more interesting, and more humble over the decades. As our lives unfold, the touchstone of the class reunion allows us to better appreciate our former classmates, but clearly also to better know ourselves.
From Toni Sarcone Martin
I had the craziest feeling on Saturday of wanting to walk around to each table and connect! I was overwhelmed with the fact that there were just so many in our class and lamented the fact that I had not had more time to know more of them!
Because of our 50th, I was also able to reflect and understand better the role of TRHS in the foundational building blocks of my life. My love for learning which translated into teaching for me and my love for people which translated into mentoring young people were richly planted and watered in the halls and activities of Roosevelt.
It was a good feeling to "name" those gifts of TRHS. Ken Brody's article was an excellent observation as he captured well our growth as individuals.
From Gerry Ramsey
The friends we made at TRHS in the 60s are still the same quality people, and it was good to connect with many of them again. Fifty years certainly flew by quickly but most of us seemed to have grown during those years into happy, prosperous, healthy members of our communities!
Looking back on last weekend, reflection reveals how fortunate we are to have been a part of the class of ’67.
The high-quality education we received, and the experiences we shared there are as solid as that old well-kept building that housed us as students. Though my wife, Carole, was unable to attend, she has now heard my TRHS 50th tales so many times this week that she will need to purchase ear-plugs if she is to enjoy any peace and quiet. It has been fun sharing Rough Rider tales with the family.
We both worked on Carole’s 50th reunion at Berkeley High, and are aware, first hand, of what your committee put out to make the event so successful. You faced herculean tasks and carried them off with panache. My hat is off to all of you for your hard work, and I wish you good health and happiness for at least the next 50.
By Dave Eveland
Hello,thanks committee members for putting the reunion together. Am sorry could not make it due to previous travel plans.
My parents moved to Des Moines in the summer of 1963 and moved away not long after graduation. Have not seen any TRHS classmates since was in the Army 71-73. Have been in Hawaii since early 1975 and with no family left in Iowa have rarely gone back to the home state.
That situation has made the information shared as to classmates on your reunion page all the more appreciated. If any of you are over here on your travels and would like to meet for lunch or just say hello or go on a hike let me know. The same goes for classmates that have relocated here. Thanks for helping me feel more connected to TRHS and the class of 67.