Ilion High School
1958 Senior Class History
As reported in "The Mirror of 1958"
In September 1954, the eighth grades of East Frankfort, Annunciation and High School consolidated. We were a bewildered and mixed-up bunch of gangling Freshmen as we assembled on that first day of school. For the first time in our lives, we had a choice of subjects; this was the first rung of the ladder that would extend to June '5 8.
Our Freshman year was fun for all. Homeroom officers were chosen, but the election of class officers was delayed until our Sophomore year. Who doesn't remember our first participation in Class Games where, though we lost by a scant eight points, we cheered until we were quite hoarse? However, by the time we reached Jan Conley's and our first open house, we were ready for more fun. The core for our JV and Varsity Cheerleading squad was formed when the Frosh Cheerleaders were chosen. These girls were Linda Connick, Jan Conley, Donna Furman, Elaine Kerr, Sheila Kerr, Sandy Kowalczik, Edna Kramer, Kathy McGarl and Phyl Wainman. In the field of girls' athletics, we remember that Brenda Cudhea was the first girl to win a varsity sports letter. For the first time we elected Sandy Kowalczik to be our candidate in the annual Miss March of Dimes contest.
This year represented a great many "firsts" but as it drew to a close, we were looking forward to our Soph year and homerooms on the second floor.
Our Soph year began with election of class officers. "Murph" was elected to hold the executive office; Wicky Hammond was chosen veep; secretarial duties were to be taken care of by Linda Connick; and Kathy McGarl was our treasurer. We now were an active part of Senior High School, for we had people representing us in the Student Senate.
Miss Wasmer, our class adviser, spurred us on with many new fund-raising activities and, with.. out her, our treasury wouldn't have grown as it did. Mr. Lang, our other adviser, gave us much of his time helping us on our Ball and Prom; his assistance proved invaluable. They were to be directly responsible for the success our class has achieved.
We were later on to be known as "one of the richest classes in the history of the I. H. S." The first step in this direction was the sale of felt monograms and the checking of coats at basketball games.
We would like to forget that we were defeated again in the Class Games, but the memories of the fun we had at the game and afterwards at Jack Noll's open house linger.
Our year as Sophs ended with a big party for all at Carl Davis's.
After another summer vacation we trooped back to school for our Junior year. The election of class officers was first on our calendar. Carl Davis, Warren Lennox, Kathy McGarl, and Jan Conley had the honors this time. Senate delegates were elected for the first time. Phyl Wainman and Wayne Murphy were our representatives.
We went right to work to increase our bank accounts by selling cards, magazines, and operating the concession at the football games.
Never before had I. H. S. had three one-act plays put on by the various classes. As Juniors we put on Hall and Middlemass's play, "The Valiant." Mr. Smith, our English teacher, directed Carl Davis, Brad Rivers, Don Alexander, Linda Sullivan, and Sam Jess in their roles.
Our Junior Ball, "Fantasy in Snow", was held December 28. Linda Connick and Pete Ahern were co-chairmen of this gala event. The gym was transformed into a wonderland with snow and evergreens. Scads of fun was had by all who worked on it.
Class Games were a victory for us at last! We, the "Lord Fauntleroy's" popped the "Senior Bubble Dancers" 37-35. We were cheered on by our JV cheerleaders: Jan Conley, Linda Connick, Donna Furman, Elaine Kerr, Sheila Kerr and Sandy Kowalczik. Everyone relaxed afterwards at Carl Davis's open house.
Ilion's Chapter of the National Honor Society tapped its members in an open assembly. Those who made the grade were Linda Connick, Linda Edick, Don Lawrence, Susie Elmendorf, Elaine Griswold and Phyl Wainman. Linda Edick, Don Lawrence, Pete Ahern, and Phyl Wainman represented Ilion in the State Citizenship Conference at Syracuse University.
Pete Ahern, Sam Jess, Don Lawrence, Warren Lennox, and Doug Merchant had a chance to see politics in the making while attending Boys' State. Linda Edick attended Girls' State.
Construction on the school was instrumental in postponing the beginning of our senior year for a week. At our first class meeting Pete Ahern was elected to lead us in our final year. As vice-president we chose Don Lawrence; Dolores Pawelek was elected secretary, and the financial duties were delegated to Phyl Wainman. Linda Connick and Nance Cristman were our delegates to the Senate.
We again plunged into the job of making our treasury grow. Who doesn't remember again, a mad scramble during the half at football games, at our concession?
With November came the selection of our Good Citizen Award. Phyl Wainman's classmates chose her to represent them in the State DAR Contest.
A homecoming, during which old grads were welcomed back, was initiated this year. "Murph" and Sheila Kerr were the King and Queen, and they were crowned at the Pep Rally preceeding the Herkimer-Ilion game. Remember the bonfire, the snake dance and the burning in effigy of the Herkimer team? The traditional Herkimer-Ilion game was played with the usual fervor; we won again, placing Ilion's team, co-captained by Wick Hammond, Jack Noll and Wayne Murphy, in first place in the Iroquois League.
Who will forget the flu epidemic and that fact that I. H. S.' s motto "We never close" was altered?
Class games rolled around again. This time we went all out in the costume department, and we'll never forget the thrill of last games. The girls leading the zany cheers were the same, except that this time Kathy McGarl and Carol Streeter were there, too.
The Seniors representing Ilion in the Choral Section of the All-State Music Festival were Don Bridger, Linda Sullivan, Brad Rivers, and Don Alexander.
Planning for the Senior Prom began with the appointment of Pat Furrer as general chairman, and Sue Fuller and Jay Kelly as co-chairmen of decorations. The fun we had while working on the decorations was surpassed only by the satisfaction of seeing a job well done.
June loomed up on the horizon, the last time for the class of '58. Exams, Baccalaureate, the class picnic and, too soon for most of us, graduation, which put the finishing touches on four almost perfect years.
After graduation we all will walk out into the world to seek separate paths on the road of life. We will achieve varying degrees of success, but all will remember the years spent at I. H. S.
"For the structure that we raise,
Time is with materials filled;
Our todays and yesterdays
Are the blocks with which we build".
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