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Martinsville High School Alumni
Class of 1965 Message List
your 50 year reunion - 12
06/08/14     leon custer  (1963)      leoncuster@yahoo.com
Our nation is presently honoring those who lost their life during the D-Day invasion in 1944. Most of you were but infants. Our war was Vietnam. As far as I know, the only person from the class of 1963 that we can and do honor, who died in battle in that war, was SP4 Lonnie Douglas Alley. Doug did not make it to graduate with us, but he was our classmate at Joseph Martin for seven years and part of our high school years. He was a really-really nice guy. I lost contact with Doug in high school and don’t know the reason he did not graduate. I do not even know when he enlisted in the Army.

I do know that many of us that went to Joseph Martin and Clearview Elementary were in families that struggled with finances. Many moms were homemakers and most of our dads made low pay as furniture factory workers, so it was necessary for many of us to go to work early. In my case, I ran the cafeteria cash register for a free lunch in my 8th and 9th grades, and then always had some job from age 15 including full time at Sale Knitting second shift my senior year. I knew many classmates that had it much tougher than me. Some graduated, some did not.

Thinking about Doug today, I was remembering our childhood which had so many wonderful memories and friendships. I would like to suggest to the classes of 1964 and later, when you have your 50 year reunions, please consider inviting your classmates that did not quite make it to graduation. Is it really necessary that they completed the race with you? Remember, they were your classmates and friends for probably 10 of your 12 years. Maybe they were unfortunate and had life’s tribulations at an early age: divorced or sick parents, moved, parent lost job, had to work, got married, had a child, joined the military, etc. Were we not the fortunate ones? I am hoping you will consider inviting your classmates that could not make the complete trip with you.
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