AUGUST, 2007



Trojan Head designed by   Kermit Ruyle '47

Table of Contents

  • PAGE 2
    You're invited
    Ralph Broeker '55
    Yearbook slide
    Santa's B-Day
    Questionnaire returns
  • PAGE 3
    Where is?
    T. O'Connor's poem
    Classmates Remember

    Letters to Editor
  • PAGE 4
    Mysterious Necklace
    Letters Con't
  • PAGE 5
    What am I doing?
       Les Schwenk '60
    Ice Storm remembered
    Post office opens
    Printable Flashlight
    The Sixties
    Where did you live
  • PAGE 6
    Internet Fines
       Butter vs Margarine

    Johnny Carson
       American the beauty  
       Art Class

  • PAGE 7


    The Mikado / Victory Theater in Wellston

                                                          State Fair (1945)

    Starring: Jeanne Crain, Dana Andrews  Director: Walter Lang

    State Fair was the only score by Rodgers and Hammersteins, written expressly for the screen. It highlights this delightful film about an Iowa family's adventures at the fair, staring Jeanne Crain, Dana Andrews, Dick Haymes, Vivian Blaine, and Charles Winninger, it made its debut at the Victory Show in 1945. "Those were carefree and wonderfully filled days of ten cent movies and nickel bags of popcorn."    ~ Bob Haefner '49

    The Mikado / Victory Theater was located on the North side of Easton Avenue, just East of Hodiamont Avenue in Wellston business area. The address was 5951 Easton Avenue (today Dr. Martin Luther King Drive.)

    The O. T. Crawford chain built the Mikado theater in 1911, the architect was F. A. Duggan. The Original Japanese design seated 1608, including the balcony.  The building was completely redesigned in 1939 in a modern art deco design. Fire regulations, wider seat, and aisles reduced seating capacity to 1103.  The newly modernized Mikado added a permanent marquee projecting over the entrance.     

    In December 1941, WWII began.  In many cities a theater named Mikado, (a dated term for "emperor of Japan"), would be renamed. The Mikado was renamed the Victory theater, in February, 1942.

    Did you work at one of the Wellston Theaters? Send us a note. What are your favorite Movie memories, Saturday serials, kids shows, first date, or your first love at the movies? Remember the Free Dishes? Please email us your memories. To see more about the Victory and Wellston Theaters click here.

    click to view larger

    Tom Duffy sent this story in: On the 4th of July the Verseman's (a pretty large extended family), who lived in the 6400 block of Wells (near Ogden) would set off fireworks. They always put on a good neighborhood show with their huge box of fireworks . One year one of the older boys accidentally dropped a lit punk or match into the fireworks box setting the whole box off - that was really a show, with roman candles going off horizontally.

    Their were numerous fireworks stands along each side of Easton all along the shopping strip. In 1947 one of those stands exploded causing a domino effect with numerous stands blowing up. Windows were blown out of a number of stores such as Busy Bee and Neisner Dime Store, plus a few cars were set on fire. It was a real big deal.  Some things never seem to change though. 60 years later fireworks are still causing damage to people and property.




         Page 2

                                      August, 2007

    Billie has worn dancing shoes for over 25 years!

    Billie Smith '47
    to make larger click picture
    Click onto MOST pictures to enlarge  them
    314 Questionnaires' mailed to those who attend Reunion 2006 and the Guarantors': 94 responded.

    Trustees' breakdown.

    Santa (Jim Chapman '60) celebrates his 65th birthday with his Red Shirt babes from ('60 - '63). Click here to see other pictures of Jim and his girls.
       Thanks to those who sent in their stories, pictures, etc sharing with the alumni.
    Would you have something to share?  A special event or trip? Maybe an interesting hobby? 

    Email it to us. Others are very interested in what you are doing.
                                        YOU'RE INVITED 
    Billie and husband Jim Toeniskoetter, have been square dancing for over 25 years. They are inviting all Wellstonites join them in some terrific fun!!! Besides having an inexpensive evening out, it's mind stimulating, you'll meet and make new friends, plus it's great exercise. Registration is now being excepted for fall, 2007. For more information Click Here 
                                       Ralph Broeker '55 says:

    I have just had two significant things happen to me recently....1) I completed 51 years in banking - 25 of which were at the State Bank of Wellston and 2) I broke my left arm.  The arm is healing fine and I am still working 3 days a week for  Reliance Bank in Frontenac.  After all these years it's still fun!

    Reunion Trustees
    send their thanks to everyone responding to the questionnaire that was mailed. They're grateful for the many suggestions and remedies on how to cure some of the problems which incurred during Reunion 2006. There were 314 questionnaires' mailed, 94 responded: 

    1940 - 1949 -- 12 responses
                                   1950 - 1959 -- 43 responses
                                   1960 - 1968  --39 responses

    The trustees are working diligently separating and addressing each response and solution.  With your suggestions Reunion 2009 should run much smoother. The results will be published later either via the web or in a newsletter when all work has been completed.


    Have you looked at the 'Missing Alumni' list lately? We were able to find so many more alumni with your help!! Our drive with pictures turned into a huge success because of group effort.

    The alumni we found were just as happy they were found as we were to take them off the missing, adding them to the Buzz Book. However, we still have a lot more to find.

    Please take another look at the List to see if possibly you've missed someone or maybe know of someone in one of the other classes that you didn't receive.



         Page 3

                                     August, 2007

           John Verble '53
      Where in the World is John Verble (Class of '53)
    Check out the link taking you to the missing alumni list in your class. They may not even know they are missing!!  If there’s someone on the list whom you might know the whereabouts of (dead or alive) please email us the information or have them contact us. As you will see there’s only a few classes who have a lot missing. Most classes had someone who took the initiative to keep their class list current. This is not an easy task to undertake but does make it easier for the reunion committee.   Check all the classes. There might be someone’s brother, sister, aunt, uncle, parents or even neighbors on the list. The list spans 30 years. MISSING ALUMNI

    Classmates Remembered
    Theresa O'Connor '63 has written a beautiful poem remembering our departed alumnus.  To Read.

    To view our ClassMates Remembered List Please click here

    Thelma Pitts '51
    Passed 6/25/07

    Click picture to read obit


    Harold Smith '44
    Passed 7/2/07

    Click picture to read obit

    Link to the Guest Book
    (Available until 8/2/2007)

    Shirley A Summers '37
    Nickname 'Sas"
    Passed 5/2/2007

    Click picture to read obit

    Condolence's: To Jack Patriquin, '45 for the loss of his wife LaVerne (Loseman) on July 4th
    LETTERS TO THE EDITOR:  Note: To view larger click any picture
    Shirley Ann Summers (Sas), an alumnus of '37 and Home Coming Queen, passed away May, 2007. This information was given to me by my cousin, Virginia Schmidt '38, who lived in the same complex as Sas. Virginia lived on Lenox, the same as I did. There are so few of us left that can remember back that far. I find it very interesting seeing how far back you really CAN go. We enjoyed Reunion 2006 very much and hope to be around in 2009 for the next one. Thanks for all your hard work. Dorma "Lee" Koch '44
    Thanks, Theresa (O'Connor '63) for your poem first appearing in the July issue. You captured the essence of our time at Wellston High School. The teachers, whose brilliance took you a while to appreciate, but you eventually did....Mr. Thoss, Miss Niles, Mr. Blinder, Mr. Wilson....They broke the mold.....Bea McBride '66
     I worked for Taylor "Box Lunch" and "Taylor's Vita-Fresh" Restaurant on Page and Ferguson (Southwest corner) which was a precursor of "Chuck-A-Burger" "Bud" Taylor was the owner and Ralph Stille was the overall Supervisor. I also worked at the "Chuck-A-Burger" Drive In on Page and Pennsylvania. Ralph Stille was also a member of Wellston Lodge #613 AF&AM, together with Superintendent Millard M. Halter, and Principal, Donald G. Neibeck, including my good friend, Dewey "Audy" Barnett, and of course myself. Thanks for your good work in bring back precious memories. Ralph Stege '43

    Hi, I really enjoyed the July Flashlight issue....    I was thinking you may spark some memories by including the attached photo taken at The Highlands in 1950 - subjects are Janet Thompson Benavides and Joann Pallardy Moss - class of '50.... Wonder how many people had their photo taken sitting on the moon? Keep up the good work. Janet Thompson '50   Click on pictures to view larger

    Hello news staff!!! I just want you all to know I have REALLY enjoyed the Flashlights you send each month. I am leaving this job going to another where I will not be using a computer. I don't have a computer at home so I will miss the new issues. Thanks for all the ones I did received. July's issue brought back many memories of the Highlands Park---all good and fun ones!!!  If I ever get a home computer, you know I will log on again and let you know where to send the news. Until then---KEEP UP THE GOOD NEWS!!!!  Margaret Kuni, Class of '64---and proud of it
    Does anyone out there remember me? I went to Wellston Elem from K - 4 grade. My name is Nancy Blake, my sisters are Judy '62, Shirley '64, & Frances '66. We all loved going to the Highlands every year. I remember the paper hats and flowers we made to wear in the parades. After moving to St. Charles, Mo. I didn't see my school friends again. I can remember one girl (but not her name) who's uncle was Mickey Mantel. Thanks, Nancy Blake  '69    (picture unavailable)

    Continue on page 4





         Page 4

                                      August, 2007


    The girls of 1965 are really  speculating who the 'lunatic' is that mailed them a necklace. "It could be Tom C" one of the girls wrote in.

    "Not that Tommy is the only lunatic in '65'", she went on to say, "but he is one that could and would do something that nice."

    Was it you Tom C? It's driving the girls wild trying to figure out who it is.

    The mystery continues .....

    Pat Martin, '60 invites you to share in her grandson, William Lance Wilson, Jr's wedding, held July 7th, by viewing the pictures. Pat named Wm's father, her 1st born, after principal Lance Williams because she loved his name and thought he was really a nice person.  

    Click here to view wedding pictures

    To view picture click here

    Wilma Taylor '60 celebrates her daughter 30th B-day at Steve Creole Restaurant in Encino, CA. Wilma resides in sunny California.
                                  Letters to the Editor continued from page 3:
    All your hard work is really appreciated by the 1965 Rat Pack Group....That would be Sharon Zeltman, Mari Treadway, Audrey Pilkenton, Louis Landsbury, Linda Walrum, Sally Bebee, Millie Blackwell, Sharon Cain, Sue Kinnemore, Linda Pruski and Shirley Dawes.  We have a great time at all the gatherings and truly appreciate the hard work that goes into every detail.

    I'll be submitting an article about the history of the Class of '65 ratpack. No guys were in the group, but Ron Mueller, Jim Bennett and Dick Jefferies are waiting for us to open it up to the male gender, as well as Larry Brown '63. Again, great job.  Mari Treadway '65

    I would like to say hello to my old classmates of 1969. It's really nice being able to keep up with school news and I enjoy the articles too. Jeanie Besancenez '69

    I've always enjoy the monthly editions of the FLASHLIGHT, more now than I did when I was in school. They mean an awful lot now, as we spend more time remembering, than we do looking forward. Bill Eggert '55

    One of my favorite teachers, believe it or not, was Miss Eleanor Summers.  She taught me valuable work ethics that have helped me all my adult life. I remember that Jewel Tea Co. called Wellston looking for a secretary who was graduating in l957 to work in their office on Page Ave.  I didn't have a car, of course, so Miss Summers took the time to recommend me, drive me there after school for the interview, wait for me in the car, then drive me home.  I was hired and it became my first job after graduating.  Luckily, there was a bus line near my home on Suburban, so I was able to commute back and forth to work every day. 

    My very favorite teacher was my P.E. teacher, Mrs. Wildermuth.  She took all her athletes under her wing, had picnics at her home for us, etc.  Having no children, we were her babies, I assume.  She was truly "one of a kind."  Truthfully, we had so many great teachers in school, we were very blessed.  We had a small school and got a terrific education. Peggy Taylor '57

    "Here is a copy of the '55 senior class play "Meet Arizona"  from Mr. Charles Cordeal's music class, performed in the spring of 1955. I played the part of Larry". Bill Eggert '55  

    Editors note:  Lee Erwin and I can still sing the title song to this musical and if you check the script you will see that part of it says, "Meet Arizona, with the sunlight on the sage and it's spreading purple beauty stirs you like a poet's page, meet Arizona with the love she holds for you, and you just can't help lovin' ole Arizona too.! That's the only musical number I remember from that show and that's probably a good thing!

    I played Carlotta, I believe, and not very well at that. I remember one of my lines was "Bad Man Gauldy go away" or something else equally insane. I think you (Bill Eggert) may have already been in the Air Force by the time we did a show called "Spot of Rhythm" which opened with Lee Erwin, now a retired minister, walking down the aisle singing a solo with that great voice of his. It opened, "now I'm Professor Snoggletweed and I've led a lonely life indeed, I've been so dull, I do repent and now before my life is spent, I'm hip and eager to be sent. Your show looks like a real headliner. I'm searching for--oh, to make it clear--where is a spot of rhythm, dear?" There was some sort of running gag with someone walking through the set all the time with a ladder--what was that all about?

    Most of us lost our little memory box with all this stuff when parental units "cleaned up" or moved on to other places. Mine went up in flames in the back yard of 6322 Ridge when my uncle decided to clean house. Thanks, Uncie! I'm so glad you found this script to remind me (and others) of one happy spring.  Thanks, Sandy Gibbons Johnson LaRouche '57 Note: View a larger picture click the picture 



         Page 5

                                     August, 2007

    Les Schwenk '60

    Les Schwenk '07

    Please pray for their safe return back home.

    Click Image

     We welcome contributions each month, send in your story, or perhaps a story about a favorite teacher or classmate that made a difference in your life whom is no longer with us.  We will try to honor one selected short story of general interest each month:  This months feature story is:

    Leslie Schwenk '60: Who would ever think that Les would turn out to be such a backward kid? Yup, that's what we said - BACKWARD! While in school he was such a nice young man and so straight forward, remember? To read what changed him, click here:

    ice storm shuts st. louis down


    Remember last January? Have a refreshing look at the ice storm that shut down St. Louis and surrounding areas.

    Wouldn't it be nice if we could have bottled up some of that cold weather for these 'dog days' of August?

    Photo sent in by Manuel Benavides, husband to Janet Thompson '50 

    New Post Office
    for St. Louis County

    opens a short distance
    from the city limits. It's
    name -
    (120 years ago)

    Printable Flashlights

    Previous Flashlights are now available in printable format to save or share.  Downloading is NOT required. The formatting is different, not as pretty, but it contains the same news, pictures, and info plus its PRINTABLE!

    If there's a special month you'd like to print out email us.  We'll send you the link to that month's edition.

    Please share a copy with someone who doesn't have email. It'd be GREAT if we can keep everyone updated on alumni news. 
    July 2007 and August 2007



         Page 6

               August, 2007       




    churning butter, reading the paper in 1944
    Click to view larger


    Be prepared to laugh til tears roll down your cheeks at one of Johnny's funniest skits.



    Mrs. Turner - Art Class
    Where was this kid when she was teaching!

    NOTE FROM THE EDITOR: There's a lot of things floating around the internet which will and sometimes do show up in our mailboxes daily. Some are jokes, some information, some are just to beautiful for words, while others are down right unbelievable. Take a few minutes and browse through these links.  We've given a little description of what each contains. 

    Drop us a note. What would you like to see added or increased in the Flashlight....what would you like us to change? Your input will help us improve the Flashlight.


    There's an email floating around the Internet saying the reason
    "margarine was created to fatten up turkeys." When the investors (in the research) learned it was instead killing turkeys, they got together to see how this product could be salvaged, making a return on their money instead of taking the loss. The email goes on to ask "DO YOU KNOW...the difference between margarine and  butter?"  Then after the question there appeared a lot of comparisons plus some statements which were totally beyond belief. We then did our own search to find out what the real truth is. 

    Mrs. Grace Herr, pictured on the left, churns butter in her farm home outside Lockport, Niagara County, New York. Mrs. Herr had made butter that way for many years (1934-1944).
    (Click) results of the search
                 JOHNNY CARSON with Dragnet's JACK WEBB AT THEIR FUNNIEST

    All us old timers will remember these guys. Their humor was preformed without body parts, body functions, or sex. Gee, what a concept! Be prepared for a good laugh, as this is truly a classic:  (Click) Johnny and Jack.

                                                  AMERICA THE BEAUTIFUL

    Click on 'America the Beautiful' below to watch the pictures as they roll by. There are scenes from all over our nation. They named this one right, it is indeed (Click) "America the Beautiful"

                              MRS. TURNER NEVER TAUGHT US THIS TECHNIQUE!

    Do you remember making etched platters or creating beautiful pictures with melted crayons in Mrs. Turner's art class? This takes finger painting to a new edge. Mrs. Turner would have been delighted to have turned out an art student like this!  Be sure you pay attention to the music and watch the video to the very end, as this is a truly a really unique artist. (Click) Unique Artist


    "Some believe the 60s may have been the beginning of the end for the last innocent generation."


    This is one of the best presentations we have seen. Get yourself a cold drink, turn up your speakers, kick off your shoes, sit back, and ENJOY!! This'll bring back such wonderful memories of 'the way we were'. (Click) Take me back to the sixties!

    NOTE FROM THE EDITORS: Be sure to keep us updated if your email address changes when switching providers or moving. There's been a lot of emails returned marked as 'user unknown'.



         Page 7

                                     August. 2007

    Sandy Gibbons(’57)
    Bill Voos (’48)
    JoAnn Williams (’60)

    Larry Brown (’63)
    Wanda Cornman (’60)
    JoAnn Williams (’60)

    WHS Reunion
    P.O. Box 81
    Washington, MO 63090

    Phone  636-978-5771
    Fax 636-696-4693

    [email protected]


    Sold Out!!


    BIG 8x11
    41 pages

    Thanks to everyone who bought for your support.

    All proceeds went to
    the WHS-Reunion Fund


       INTERNET GEMS:   

    Three women, two younger and one senior citizen, were sitting naked in a sauna. Suddenly there was a beeping sound. The young woman pressed her forearm and the beep stopped. The others looked at her questioningly. "That was my pager," she said, "I have a microchip under the skin of my arm.

    A few minutes later, a phone rang. The second young woman lifted her palm to her ear. When she finished, she explained, "That was my cell phone. I have a microchip in my hand."

    The older woman felt very low tech. Not to be outdone, she decided she had to do something just as impressive. She steeped out of the sauna and went to the bathroom. When she returned a piece of toilet paper was hanging from her rear end. The others raised their eyebrows and stared at her. The older woman finally said........."Well, will you look at this....... I'm getting a fax!"

    On the outskirts of a small town, there was a big, old pecan tree just inside the cemetery fence.

    One day, two boys filled up a bucketful of nuts and sat down by the tree, out of sight, and began dividing the nuts.

    "One for you, one for me. One for you, one for me," said one boy. Several dropped and rolled down toward the fence.

    Another boy came riding along the road on his bicycle. As he passed, he thought he heard voices from inside the cemetery. He slowed down to investigate. Sure enough, he heard, "One for you, one for me. One for you, one for me."

    He just knew what it was. He jumped back on his bike and rode off.

    Just around the bend he met an old man with a cane, hobbling along.

    "Come here quick," said the boy, "you won't believe what I heard! Satan and the Lord are down at the cemetery dividing up the souls."

    The man said, "Beat it kid, can't you see it's hard for me to walk." When the boy insisted though, the man hobbled slowly to the cemetery.

    Standing by the fence they heard, "One for you, one for me. One for you, one for me..."  The old man whispered, "Boy, you've been tellin' me the truth.  Let's see if we can see the Lord."

    Shaking with fear, they peered through the fence, yet were still unable to see anything. The old man and the boy gripped the wrought iron bars of the fence tighter and tighter as they tried to get a glimpse of the Lord.

    At last they heard, "One for you, one for me. That's all. Now let's go get those nuts by the fence and we'll be done."

    They say the old man made it back to town a full 5 minutes ahead of the kid on the bike.




    Send in Your Story! Let us know where you’ve been and what you’ve done with your life.  Everyone loves a good story – what better reading then about someone you know!!
    Need some Hints?   . .Make a list similar to this. Send it to your classmates for ideas.     Click here for sample story ideas ca 1940s..then make yours!