West End Online
'Your Memorable Years at Good ol' West End High'

Updated  03/10/21     Email  weonline@westendhigh.com     Contact Me  Here

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Our Memories - Page 4
Updated 03/10/2021

One bright WEHS memory is of the ever-helpful Hi-Y Ushers who hoisted me from floor to floor in those pre-accessible days and the rotating team of classmates who helped me meet Mr. Wilder's rule to get to the next class ahead of (out of the way of) the class-change swarm. What a swell bunch, one and all! Accompanying Ms. Praytor to a citywide Roman banquet for Latin students where everyone wore white sheets and prayed the safety pins wouldn't snap open and send our sheets plummeting to the floor. Our freshman year version of Oklahoma! where powder used to "granny" my hair set a cluster of cast members to sneezing just before curtain time. Adding nuts to a recipe in cooking class with the mixer at max speed. I still get a chuckle remembering the surprised look of classmates as those little missiles torpedoed through the air!

So many wonderful memories of high school. Mainly, of course, ballgames and pep rallies, making pompoms and painting signs. All the teachers, especially Ms. Ezell, Ms. Whaley, Ms. Beatty, Ms. Gibson, Ms. Spurrier, Ms. Haywood and Ms. Baughan.

My memories have really been getting stirred up with this West End Online web site! I remember Miss Prater's Latin class and her saying, "Est stultus, Harold!" (no last names to embarrass anyone!) - The Latin Book Burning Ceremony at Helen Likis' house. Mr. Baughan testing a gas we produced that wasn't supposed to support combustion and the lighted splint exploded! The B-Y Teens and Ms. Baughan trying to teach us to sit like "ladies". Buying cigarettes one by one at the corner store by the school. The lovely blue suits that we girls had to wear in gym class. Practicing Midsummer's Night Dream underneath the stage area in the auditorium. The skits that we did for the class officers' election. Filling bags with groceries and toys at Christmas with the B-Y Teens. Piling in Henry Haney's green car and riding to the swimming hole. And finally, a May pole dance on the football field when we were students at Robert E. Lee! There's more - they just keep tumbling around in my brain. I'm remembering more than I ever thought I would, so these ol' gray brain cells aren't all completely dead!

I remember Ridlehoover's BBQ at Five Points West, West End Theater and Spivey's 5 and 10 cent store (now where the theater was). I remember the big tree out in front of the school where everyone gathered in the mornings to talk. My friends and I gave that tree a special significance, reverently calling it "The Tree". Does anyone remember having a W shaved in the back of their head on the 1st day of school as a Freshman Rat? I do and I was always grateful to that guy for not doing any more to me. I was also glad the suspense was over, it had been the worst summer of my life not knowing what terrible thing was going to happen to me when I started school!

Does anyone remember driving over to cruise around at Ed Salem's or going to the Spinning Wheel for the best milkshakes? I remember having to dress up to go downtown shopping and we didn't even wear pants to school in those days. Having so many movie theaters with the movies changing so often. The privilege of having so many excellent teachers, but especially the "mature, unmarried" teachers who were so dedicated, capable and yet each one unique and special, from Hemphill through WEHS. Riding the bus to go to the symphony in grammar school and then the wonderful vocal classes with Ms. Sophia Davis. kick ball, dodge ball, playing on the bars at "play period" and the lunchroom in the basement at Hemphill.

I remember that when Miss Praytor's rubber tree bloomed, it was quite an occasion! Also have fond memories of Ms. Shelburne playing the bagpipe and waxing poetic about her adventures in Paris just before the Nazis marched in. The only thing I learned in Mr. Baughan's chemistry class was how to make a stink bomb, but that information has come in real handy over the years. Actually, the most useful classes I took at WEHS were Latin and typing. Can anybody else still conjugate hic, haec, hoc?

West End holds several warm memories for me, but the most important was the football team and that little sign over the locker door, “You’ve gotta want it!” That little motto and the lessons of sacrifice and determination taught by coaches Mitchell, Roy and Short helped me achieve life’s goals that I never could have imagined possible. I still have my '62 letter sweater and I’m just as proud of that letter as I am of my wings! There are so many great stories and memories that space won’t allow here, but I sure remember the locker room episode of Bobby Atchison and the scoop of “red hot” on a tongue depressor! Then there was the time Mr. Merchant, our science teacher, banged two erasers together creating a cloud of dust. I had many friends other than on the football team and it has been a real treat to read on these web pages what has happened in your lives.

I remember running around with Jack Hulon, Bill and John Cantrell, Buster Patterson, Jim Roberts and too many others to list here. Playing kick-the-can with neighborhood kids, even in high school, on warm summer nights with the Holly kids, Jack Hulon, Sandra Barker, her brother and many others. I remember dates with some of those lovely ladies at WEHS, in particular Charlcie Lively, whom I also considered a good buddy, as brief as our relationship was due to my leaving for the AF. Just a note after reading Mary Louise Ross' memory. I was one of the people that pick up her sisters car and put it in the hall.

Three things I still find funny today were indirectly involved with science. 1) Watching Mr. Merchant rolling the skeleton from classroom to classroom always made me smile. 2) I was in Coach Mitchell's class one day when he asked, "Have any of you ever been shocked when you slid across the seat of the car?" Hands shot up all over the class. He said, "Stay on your side of the car!" 3) I believe I was in a history class when some science students came in to share with us some fried grasshoppers and chocolate covered ants from a deli. three in our class tried them. A short time later, all three jumped up holding their mouths and ran out of the room!

I started WEHS in the 10th grade and remember that several key friendships were made in the transfer students' home room that year. Fun teacher memories are of Ms. "Rooten Tooten" Wooten reading "Bells, Bells ...." and of Mr. & Ms. Baughan for Chemistry and History respectively. Also had special fondness for Ms. Sophia Davis, the choral teacher, who died of cancer during my HS days.

I enjoyed my 4 years at WEHS; I think most days my head was in the clouds but I managed to learn enough to graduate. My most embarrassing moment was in Spanish with Mrs. Hilleke (Spanish was not one of my best subjects). She asked me a question in Spanish, "Do you have any bananas?" and she said I said, "Yes, we have no bananas". She said that didn’t make any sense!

Does anyone else remember first period English with Rootin' Tootin' in the dead of winter when she would throw open all the windows on Monday mornings for a little fresh air? It was a chilling experience as I recall. She died many years ago and I still miss her trusted friendship.

I remember the day that I drove my sister Barbara's tiny blue car to school. I had pleaded with her for weeks to allow me to drive it. She gave in one day and I came out after school to drive the cool, cute car home only to find it missing from the parking lot. It had been picked up and placed in the school hallway! I remember taking up money for friends who had gotten speeding tickets. I used to go into Mr. McIntosh's math class and write 2+2=14 or some other wrong answer. He always knew it was me. I remember Ms Ezell saying, "Your High School record stands for you or against you and it will follow you the rest of your life. Know what, she was right!

I remember B-YTeens with Ms. Baughan. We did lots of community projects that I enjoyed, especially Easter for a little girl and Christmas dolls. I enjoyed working at the Goodfellows Store during Christmas break. The camaraderie of the girls in that club was great. I also liked Shorthand and Typing classes, I guess because that was the only thing I did really well. Remember Ms Martin "The verb to be never takes an object." The WELION gossip columns.

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Updated  03/10/21     Email  weonline@westendhigh.com     Contact Me  Here


 Online February 2001     By Cliff Walker     Copyright© 2001-2021