I was thinking about July
4th this year when the class of 1953 will be celebrating our
66th year since we graduated and I was remembering my
diploma being delivered during a movie at the Alderson
theatre. Our principal, Mr. Mitchell called me into his
office one day in late May to tell me that when all the
diplomas for our class arrived mine wasn't included. For
some reason they didn't send it and it was being reordered.
Know one but Mr.
Mitchell and I knew that the diploma I received along with
my classmates that wonderful day did not have my name on
it. The diploma belonged to someone who for some reason
didn't graduate with an earlier class. I have that diploma
in my bookcase along with the one I received later.
Some time during the
summer of 1953 I was attending a movie with my girl friend
Barbara Mallette, (she later became my wife for 35
years) when Mr. Mitchell came down the isle and asked me to
stand up for a few minutes. The movie was on but Mr.
Mitchell handed me my diploma, congregated me, shook my hand
and started clapping. Every one in the movie that day stood
up and joined in. I always thought it was very special of
him to make that effort when he could have taken it to my
parents house. He was a good man that I respected and a
Another story about Mr. Mitchell and the 50's; I had an old
coffee grinder he wanted and he brought a civil war musket
to school one day to see if I would trade with him. I still
have the coffee grinder. Today that would bring in a swat
team to surround the school.