On July 4, 2014, the Mountaineer High School Alumni Association held its first reunion at the former Thomas High School gym (Thomas Community Center).
It was a much anticipated reunion that was set up in the fall of 2013 by a committee of former graduates – Dick Uchic, Susan Meyer, Patty Yokum and Sam Eichelberger. At the initial meeting some plans were made to have the reunion over the July 4th weekend while Mountaineer Days were taking place in Thomas. Dick Uchic assigned various individuals to committees and also was able to get a great list of individuals to act as class representatives procuring addresses for their members. By January, a letter was prepared and three original committee members sent packets to class representatives so they could distribute. After a slow beginning, individuals began to send their forms back and the reunion took shape. Former graduate Debbie (Miller) Welch and her friend, Karen Niner were hired to cater the event.
Check in took place at the Davis VFD hall on Thursday evening, July 3rd where many classmates did early visiting. Then on July 4th in the morning, several people arrived to pick up their nametags and get checked in. Then the reunion followed at 1pm in the Thomas Community Center.
The reunion started with appetizers and shortly after that a greeting from Dick Uchic, thanking all committee members and class representatives who worked diligently to make this a success. This was followed by a short welcome from Susan Meyer. The welcome included recognition of former teachers that were present: Joe Grecco, Coach Stan Sedmock, Don and Rosalee Dolan, Anne Felty, Bob Walters, Dale Ruckle and John Lawrence. Special recognition was made for the one bus driver who was present, Mr. Ira Miller, 97 years young. It was noted that these drivers were able to get everyone to school no matter what the weather and often under very trying circumstances. The Class of 1959, 1964, 1969 and 1974 were having milestones this year, so that was mentioned as well. The two classes having the most in attendance – 1967 and 1965 – were recognized as well. Patty (Nelson) Yokum then gave out a few door prizes including one to Gene Hoffner, the Mountaineer graduate who traveled the farthest, from Wasilla, Alaska. One other former MHS student, Ruth (Phelps) Makepeace, was in attendance from the United Arab Emirates. As soon as the short program concluded, MHS graduate, Rev. Ed Helmick, led the group in a touching prayer prior to the meal.
Those in attendance included guests and spouses of the following former MHS students/graduates:
Class of 1956 – Bill Metz, Phil Steyer, Louise (Stuart) Hitch and George DiBacco
Class of 1957 – Norman Carr, Carol (Friend) Huggins and Buddy Meyer
Class of 1958 – Brenda Gotinsky, Gene Sines, Wayne Wilcox, Allen Bonner, John Kline, Sue (Wilkins) Kyle, Darlene (Skotinski) Sedmock, Charles “Chipmunk” Carr
Class of 1959 – Sue Ellen (Cooper) Sturm, Lincoln Wilkins, Norman Hull, Nancy (Smith) Johnson, David Watring, Carolyn (Phelps) Lambert, Ed Wilson, Sarah (Whitehair) Felton
Class of 1960 – Sharon (Dewalt) Caltrider, Paul Teranto, Gloria (Sponaugle) Myers, Don Smith, Mary Ann (Hoffner) Ponikvar, Delton Fout, Duane Pase, Dick and Joann (Keller) Uchic, Liz (Udovich) Hodges, Gussie (Terrant) Wilson
Class of 1961 – Gene Hoffner, Patty (Nelson) Yokum, Liz (Painter) Wilcox, Ken Rizer, Patricia (Dimc) Moore, Bob Walters, Tom and Betty (Hamrick) DiBacco, Charlie Sutton, Ed and Mary Ellen (Thayer) Helmick, Rosalie (Terrant) Winters
Class of 1962 – Carol (Cooper) Brown, Robert “Cudge” Johnson, Vince Geroski, Pat Carr, Margaret (Udovich) Fout, Mary (Duckworth) Geiger, Connie (Sponaugle) Evans, Glenomia (Carr) Clark, Karen (Becker) Hornberger
Class of 1963 – Joe Massi, Bill Friend, Jim Duckworth, John Lawrence, Anita (DiBacco) Flanagan, Betty (Moore) White
Class of 1964 – Nancy (Gennantonio) LeCain, Beverly (Maravia) Geroski, Ron Stuart, Mary (Lipscomb) Milkint, Fred Paugh, Philip Miller, Jerry Flanagan, Carl Harr, Gene Worden
Class of 1965 – Dale Ruckle, Linda (Sisler) Stanley, Karen (Schurman) Peterson, Tony James, Bonnie (Rapp) Stuart, Chuck Milkint, Danny Bonner, John Cook, Ed Worden, Loretta (Smith) Goff, Mary Lou (Miller) Edmonds, Alta Sue (Arbogast) Sheppard, Carol (Cummings) Helmick, Richard Lipscomb, Jim Devore
Class of 1966 – John Smigal, Sharon (Johnson) Hancock, Candita (DiBacco) Jainchill, Ashton “Chris” Curtis, David Maxson, Pam (Miller) Harrah, Elressa (Miller) Baumgardner, Janice (Cooper) Barnes, Pat (Tekavec) Cooper, Perry Baltimore
Class of 1967 – Mickey (Sisler) Ball, Liz (Johnson) Kennedy, Terry Shrader, George Worden, Michael DePollo, Claire (Curtis) Peterson, Beverly (Losh) Lawrence, Carol Turek, Judy (Atzenhofer) Maxson, Patty Heitz, Tom Cook, Virginia (Huffman) Moats, Phyllis (Harr) Garcia, Ferman Whitehair, Doug Maxson
Class of 1968 – Barbara (Cullers) Ruckle, Betsy (Mazitis) Cangley, Lucy (Lewis) Daffron, Rebecca (Arnold) Paugh, Sam Eichelberger, Phil Firl, Cherlyn (Crawford) Parks, Debbie (Sutton) Cook, John Moore, Susan Meyer
Class of 1969 – David Paugh, Loretta (DePollo) James, Deborah (Thayer) Curtis, Jeannette (Tekavec) Ware, Ruth (Phelps) Makepeace, Alan Walker, Betsy (Canon) Whitehair
Class of 1970 – Bob Quattro, Marsha (Losh) Worden, Dan Helmick, Margaret (Johnson) Fowler, Harry Atzenhofer, Janet (Sisler) Sieberg, Penny (Green) Glover, Robert Blake, Mike Helmick, Jim Rubenstein
Class of 1971 – Joe DiBacco, Trudy (Williams) Defoyd, Marcia (Hinkle) Lemon, Carol (Watring) Helmick, Fred Meyer, Bob Rubenstein, Ron Putlovis
Class of 1972 – Helen (Putlovis) Dunphy, Terry Helmick, Jeff Atzenhofer, Elmer Gaither
Class of 1973 – Bruce Liller, Pete Novallis, Joyce (Sisler) Strader, Jonathan Hedrick, Patty (Hamner) Harman, Pat Supak, Pat Pregley, Sue (Caplinger) Rubenstein, Bob Thompson
Class of 1974 – Jojo (Lamont) Pregley, Pam (Hamner) Shepard, Don Maxson, Ken and Judy (Sisler) Caplinger
Class of 1975 – Arthur “Rusty” Davis, Dan Maxson, Paul Pacella, Debbie (Miller) Welch, Susie (Samples) Fink
Class of 1976 – Wilma (Teter) Hedrick, Ralph Pacella, Dan Fink, Sandy (Porter) Supak, Patricia (Hebb) Collins, David Miller
Class of 1977 – Adra (Wotring) Turner, Bill Bozic, Harry “Moe” Rubenstein
Class of 1978 – Laura (Bonner) Hannin, Jeff Davis, Ron Carr
The total number of registrants was 278. However, there were a few people who were unable to attend due to various issues so the actual count of attendees was 256. Many people had such a good time visiting old friends that it was suggested that another reunion be held in a few years. At that time it would be great if former Davis High School and Thomas High School would join in the festivities for a combined mountain top reunion.
Submitted by Susan Meyer