I was 78 this year and have some
memories others might not have. I remember my experience with Abe
McLaughlin. He was very inspirational. Everyone wanted to play ball for
him. Both my brothers and I played for him. I think I was a junior in High
School and we didn't wear face masks. I hit a player on one side and
someone hit the other and my nose hit his helmet. It broke the nose but I
bravely played the rest of the game. We would die for Abe. A week later
when the swelling didn't go down I had an X-ray and found it broke. I wore
a black nose guard the next season which made me look really mean. Didn't
help my playing much though. Laurence (Bunky) Rowe, Charles (Grubb) Lobban
and Bill Bryant played then as well as Con Callahan, Lonnie Shires, and
even my rival Cisco Phipps. It was a great time.
I had my hair cut by Charlie Keatley and after that Sam Bennett. As I grew
up old Bob who lost his legs was the shoe shine man. He was so friendly
and everyone loved him.
Virginia McLaughlin was a beautiful person too. She used to sing solos at
Old Greenbrier and once took the team to a game when Coach was sick. She
was a great Warden and my aunt Glenna Dameron worked for her back when the
prison was maximum security. Tom can tell you all about that. Virginia
became a good friend later in life and her passing brought great pain.
Jim Russell ran the old Alpine theatre. I know everyone remembers the Sat
Matinee. I went almost every Sat with my brothers. I loved the Green
Archer, Buck Jones, Roy Rodgers and all the rest. I remember Jim let me
see the projection camera once and I was really impressed. Jim lived
across the street from my parents and they were good friends.
Gus Williams was three years older than me but I always liked him. He was
always so friendly and I don't think he ever had an enemy. He and Lib were
in my brother Bill's class.
Ike and Mary Bess are etched in my memory too. Ike was Principal and Mary
Bess was my English teacher. Later after college I worked for Ike as the
Band Director for one semester before being drafted in the Korean War. Ike
was always fair and friendly.
There were many more but too many to ramble on about. Alderson was truly a
Village who cared for all of its children.