Ilion High School

1953 Senior Class History

As reported in "The Mirror of 1953"


Confusion reigned! As freshman we came from Annunciation, East Frankfort, and High School, to form the class of 1953.

"Where should I go?" "How do I get there?" "Where's the office?"

Eventually we became acquainted with the school, the teachers, and each other.

Often a student was startled to see a group of girls leap high in the air. The onlooker learned that these were "cheerleaders." There were seven Barbara Garlock, Doreen Pelletier, Frances Capes, Gwen Johnson, Marilyn Thompson, Marjorie Thompson, and Priss Burnham. In the class games the team, Warren Reynolds, Dick Coupe, Bill Murphy, Dale Connors, Donn Ahern, Bob Deming, Bob Bergin, Mike Palmer, Charlie Thibault, and Bob Meade, lost to the Sophs 36-17.

Members of the Junior National Honor Society, Charles Wood, Doreen Pelletier, Jane Ann Haughton, Joanby McKillop, Mary Lou Meiser, Nancy Donahue, Pat Mason, Priss Burnham, Richard Hall, Richard Klippel, Rita Stagg, Ronald Jones, Shirley Ryden, John Stephenson, and Kenneth Humphrey, were selected on basis of leadership, scholarship, and character.

At our Freshman Frolic, boys played cards, while the girls tried to persuade them to dance. We won't forget Gary O'Connell's good spirit when he volunteered for the clean-up committee.

Jim Wheat earned a varsity letter in track.

We closed our first year of high school with a picnic.

Excitement filled the air as we began our Sophomore year by electing Sue Power, president; Bob Bergin, vice-president; Jane Ann Haughton, secretary; and Bob Meade, treasurer.

A Soph Dance was held in the fall. We were busy after home basketball games checking coats and seeing that everyone got the right hat.

During quieter moments, the coat-checkers played cards. Everyone pitched in to make the Sophomore bake sale a success. Fran Capes and Betty Winsor were elected to the Junior National Honor Society.

Dressed as hoboes, Soph boys beat the frosh, 47 to 26. Junior Varsity Cheerleaders chosen were Barb Garlock, Marilyn and Marjorie Thompson, Doreen Pelletier, Priss Burnham, and Fran Capes.

Cedar Lake was the locale for the class picnic. The day was cloudy and it began to rain. Everyone drifted to the clubhouse where we spent the rest of the day dancing. After we started home, the sun came out, making a perfect end to our Sophomore year.

Ronny Jones was elected Junior Class President; Frances Capes, vice-president; Doreen Pelletier, secretary; and Priss Burnham, treasurer.

Prissie's death cost the class an outstanding member and fine friend.

Bob Meade was chosen class treasurer and vicepresident of the Senate.

Larry Thibault was chairman of the Christmas Ball.

Remember how the whole class danced the hokey pokey while waiting for the tree? What a relief when the prized possession arrived! The Ball was successful financially and socially.

JoAnn Earl had a leading role in "The Red Key", a Tri-City Play presentation.

Every Friday night some Junior would have the kids over. We ate, watched T. V., danced, talked, and sang.

Boys with letters in three sports were Jim Wheat, Bill Murphy, and Ronny Jones; two sports -Tom Pavliga, Bob Meade, Dale Connors, Bob Deming, and Donn Ahern; one sport-Clifford Williams, Mike Palmer, and Jim Fennell.

After the Junior beachcombers lost in the class games, we had a get-together at Haughtie's. Remember our Junior electricians coping with three blown out fuses?

Blackfaced endmen of our Minstrel Show were Nicodemus, Magnolia, Rastus Jones, Sambo Brown, Petunia, and Mr. Bones, otherwise known as Mike Palmer, Sue Power, Dale Connors. Bob Meade, Rita Stagg, and Ray Morton. Class co-operation made a grand show.

Ronny Jones, Fran Capes, Sue Power, Dick Hall, and Doreen Pelletier were accepted in the National Honor Society.

The J. V. Cheerleaders added JoAnn Earl and Sally Paul to their ranks and stepped up to support the Golden Bombers.

We became expert daisy pickers and flower arrangers decorating for graduation.

Our year ended with a picnic at Pine Lake. Remember swimming, boating, and mountain climbing-bus rides, football games, and eats?

Following an active campaign, Tom Pavliga was elected Senior president; Bill Murphy, vicepresident; Doreen Pelletier, secretary; and Bob Meade, treasurer. Playing an important part in these political maneuvers were the clever posters drawn by Ann Hanson and Janet Watchers.

Dick Hall, Ray Morton, and Dick Merchant helped lead cheers at the Herkimer game.

To raise money, the class voted to sell Christmas cards. Larry Thibault was chairman. Still lacking sufficient funds, the Seniors sold class pins with Patte Mason as chairman.


Doreen Pelletier was elected D A R "Good Citizen". Chuck Wood represented the school in the American Legion Oratorical contest.

Betty Winsor was elected Editor-in-Chief of the MIRROR, Ronny Jones, Managing Editor; and Shirley Ryden, Business Manager. Committees included the whole class.

"The Golden Quill" was published by Sue Power, Editor-in-Chief; Doreen Pelletier, Managing Editor; and Dick Hall, Business Manager.

The Seniors presented "Father was a Housewife" with Dick Hall as father, Patte Mason, mother; Sue Power, Julie; Gary O'Connell, Doug. Others in the cast were Ray Morton, Janice Butterworth, Dick Klippel, Bill Whiter, Barb Putnam, Ann Hanson, Shirley Ryden, Betty Cashman, Rita Stagg, John Remmell and Barb Garlock.

Class games brought the usual struggle between Juniors and Seniors. Cooperation made the Senior Prom a success. Swimming, hiking and comradeship were enjoyed at the Senior picnic.

After four hard but glorious years, that moment has finally come, graduation.


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Created and maintained by Aileen Carney Sweeney - Class of 1974

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First Published October 4, 1997 - Modified Sept 21, 2014