The graduating class of 1959, D’Iberville High School, Mississippi, met for their sixtieth reunion. For this group of former students, it’s not unusual to get together and renew friendships. Ten classmates met in the home of Cynthia Lewis to celebrate their high school graduation of May 15, 1959. Members brought typical southern dishes to share: gumbo, po-boys, and brisket, also cookies decorated with the school’s logo. The centerpiece featured a large cake with the school colors of maroon and gold and a photo of the class’s fiftieth reunion.
Not a good photo but it does the trick.
The Biloxi-D’Iberville Press gave prominence to the reunion with a write-up and photo, naming the ten 1959 graduates who met: Jerald Levins, Jimmy Rodriguez, Marlene Pickard, Shirley Richard, Charlotte Parker, Tim Greenwell, Cynthia Lewis, Janette Williams, and Orey Lee & Janet Krohn, including maiden names for the ladies.
Included in the write-up is our connection to this class: “Always a topic of any class gathering is the senior trip taken to Monterrey, Mexico, by the class just before graduation. The class raised about $2,500 that year by selling peanuts and magazines to pay for themselves and their four sponsors, Rev. Bill Coker and his wife, Ann, along with Coach Billy Salter and his new bride, Elaine. The seven-day trip by Grey Line Tours for the 23 seniors and sponsors, including meals and hotels, was by today’s standards, certainly to be considered a bargain. But then again ‘it was the 50’s.’ We now know why it was called ‘Happy Days!’”
Not only have these classmates met with some regularity, they often contact us. Bill’s two years teaching English to these students made a marked impression on their future. One man’s job sent him traveling to many countries; his senior trip to Mexico was the first time out of his home state. One lady earned her PhD in English and dedicated her dissertation to her former high school English teacher. Most have sent us Christmas cards annually, and they honored us with a 60th-anniversary card complete with greetings from all living classmates, and it included the names of those who have passed on from this life.
Sometimes I think of these young students as kids; but truth be known, they are only about two or three years younger than I am. Most are grandparents and have retired from good jobs. Throughout all the years of our ministry, these students have shown respect by keeping in touch with us and meeting for reunions, some we’ve had the privilege to attend. What a blessing they are!
The newspaper concluded: “With 60 years and counting, it seems that these classmates have made a friendship and bond that has already stood the test of time.”