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Thanks for magical weekend

Letter to the Editor

 


The Coulee Dam All Class Reunion Committee and I would like to thank the Grand Coulee Dam area businesses and residents for hosting our reunion Aug. 5-7. Something very special and almost magical happened that weekend as 500 former classmates and teachers visited your small-town high school gym, where many memories were made growing up as young children and teenagers.

I saw many tears of joy, many hugs from the heart, and many unending smiles from our classmates as they greeted their fellow classmates, many not having been seen in 40, 50, and even 60 years or more. I saw classmates visiting the churches they were baptized in, married in, and had life celebrations in, rekindling old and lost, sometimes sad and sometimes joyful, memories. I saw classmates fondly remembering those that were unable to attend and those that have left us, some with tears, and some with joy, but always smiles.

I saw classmates walking on the streets of your town and by the homes they grew up in, wondering who lived in them now, and what they looked like inside. I saw classmates visiting Cole Park, the Mulberry tree, the old Columbia School, Spring Canyon, and the Sand Pile, reliving days when life was so simple and carefree. I saw classmates at Spring Canyon Cemetery respectfully remembering those family members and friends no longer with us. I saw classmates forgetting about life stresses and politics for three short days, just remembering and reliving their childhood and school days.

But, most importantly, what I saw were classmates that were molded and educated in your small town become highly successful citizens, fathers, mothers, grandparents, veterans, ministers, educators, and life role models for many. What a special place it was growing up.

So THANK YOU to the GCD area businesses, where over 40 businesses donated funds and gifts that helped make this reunion successful. A special thank you to the Grand Coulee Dam School District and Rich Black, Harvest Foods, the Coulee Dam Federal Credit Union, the Coulee Dam and Grand Coulee Fire Departments, The Star newspaper and Scott Hunter, La Presa, Pepper Jacks, Longhorn Barbeque, Safeway, Taylor Enterprises, Christman’s High Dam Tavern, the Coulee Dam Community Church, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Hometown Hooligans (our awesome band), the National Park Service, and the rest of our business and classmate sponsors. A very heartfelt thank you to our reunion committee, especially Linda and Danny Zlateff (my diamonds of your community), Duane Casto, Lynn and Anne Wheeler, Jane and Dennis Lynch, Jody Lynch, and Joann Turner. Thanks to those who participated in reunion activities or helped set up and break down the venue: Tim Lynch, Ed Lynch, Dennis Lynch, Dale Rey, Mike Zowada, Glenna Whitelaw, Jay Rawley, Ed Powell, Stan St. Jeor, Sandy and Dave Everett, Richard Avey, Don McClure, Lori and Dave Maxwell, Ed and Sheryl Moore, Bard and Colleen Long, Karen Morley, Paul Dailey, Randy Bowman, Steve Knighten, Janice Brown Moss, Donnie and Jamie Stone, Connie Seekins Allen, Ray Gilman, Rick Luiten (our awesome photographer), others we may have missed, and those who helped with finding classmates. Thank you to the many classmates that have posted pictures and video on Facebook for those to see that could not attend, and especially to Lynn Wheeler for streaming video live on Facebook; it was a huge hit. Lastly, thanks to all of our classmates that attended the reunion. Without you, it would not have been successful. We will not let all of our hard work go to waste; we will be setting up a Coulee Dam High School Alumni Association in the near future, with an interactive website.

Thank You, Grand Coulee Dam Area!

Best Wishes and Go Beavers and Raiders!

Bert Smith

Reunion Co-organizer

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