Thursday, April 24, 2008

More on 'Friends'

It’s nothing like “Friends”, the sitcom which appeared on network TV a few years ago and still has re-runs today, but my circle of friends brings some laughs, too.

The Heavener variety is a long-running circle, dating back to, hmmm, I guess, the early 1950s. From the days of growing up on 2nd Street, there are friendships still to this day.

Like Russell Walker, my next door neighbor. We don’t talk a lot, but I don’t miss an opportunity to visit with Russell, or anyone from Heavener for that matter.

Once, Cynthia had some business in Oklahoma City. Since I’m retired, I usually travel with her. I saw going to OK City as a chance for a mini-Reunion. There are plenty of friends there.

In addition to Russell, there’s Dennis West, Paul Riggins, Jim’s brother Harold Patterson and even Nancy (Gilstrap) Adams, who lives not far from there in Purcell. Nancy and I were ‘sweethearts’, as far back as the 2nd grade. Cynthia knows that, plus she and Nancy have a friendship that dates way back. Dennis was a 2nd Street guy, too. (more on that in another blog, maybe).

Paul was a classmate of mine as were Nancy & Dennis.

I remember when I first saw Jim and Harold. It was in the summer prior to my junior year and it was at a fireworks stand on the south end of town. Jim drove an old green Studebaker and he and Harold came running across the hi-way. (Just thought I’d throw that little tidbit in)

Anyway, I got in touch with all of them, and we managed to get together for supper at one of the many fine restaurants in OK City, Spaghetti Warehouse, I recall.

Naturally, the spouses were invited as well. Harold’s wife Sheila and Dennis’ spouse Carol joined us. Paul’s wife didn’t come, but I’ve met her at one of the HHS Reunions. Nancy’s husband, Lee, didn’t come along, either, but we got the opportunity to meet him at their home in Purcell.

Nice fellow, that Lee.

Also, we got a chance to meet with one of the late Ron Bentley’s sons, Jayson. I mentioned in a previous blog, that Ron was one of my best friends, so I go back a way with Ron’s children Jayson, Dean and Raechel.

We all had a grand time sharing a few memories and laughs. That’s what reunions are about, whether it’s with old classmates, or just part of our days in Heavener.

Another time, again when Cynthia was on a business junket to Oakland, CA., we got a chance to visit with Rick Noble, one of Cynthia’s classmates, who lives in Pleasanton, a little south of Oakland. I didn’t know him, but we had something in common, beside Cynthia.

Rick and his wife are both in the newspaper business. Rick at the San Francisco Chronicle, after spending time at the San Jose Mercury-News where his wife works. Cynthia had mentioned Rick several times. Rick actually designed the T-shirt for Cynthia’s ’71 class and most of the class had one on at the last HHS Reunion. He designed it with the Runestone in mind.

I always want to meet a fellow journalist from Heavener.


At April 26, 2008 at 7:48 AM , Blogger Craig Hall said...

I always enjoy reading your blogs, John. Your stories about the Second Street Gang reminds me of how it was when we were kids, although our group could better be termed the "West Side Group" as we were scattered throughout our side of the town. Many football, basketball games and whatever else we came up with


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