EDUCATION

G-AHS Class of ‘61 gives 50 years later

PAT FRIDGEN
Daniel Combs was the recipient of a one-time scholarship from the Class of 1961, celebrating its 50th anniversary this year. The class was the first to graduate from Greencastle-Antrim High School.

The Class of 1961 is paying it forward. Proud of having been the first students to graduate from the current Greencastle-Antrim High School facility, the alumni decided to promote further education by awarding a one-time scholarship to a 2011 graduate. On the 50th anniversary of the debut event, high school sweethearts Bill and Carol (Meyers) Hoffman, (yes, they got married), presented Danny Combs with the $5,000 award at the high school awards ceremony May 19. The couple had been the senior class vice president and secretary, respectively.

The idea for the scholarship came from Carol. After 2010 Old Home Week, when many classes gather for reunions, she saw how much money was left in the treasury.

"That's ridiculous," she said at the time. "We need to do something with this money."

So she and Bill solicited the 89 classmates still living, out of the 99 graduates. Their peers were generous.

"The fun part was the checks came to me," she said. "It was like Christmas, getting the mail each day."

The two delighted in reconnecting with their friends from childhood, including many who did not attend reunions. They were very happy with the response, calling it "outstanding." They didn't even take much money out of the treasury to make the rounded number.

At the award ceremony, Bill recounted days gone by. Walking the halls of the school for just that one year, they especially enjoyed the opportunity to each lunch on the premises. The meal cost 35 cents, "and it was worth it." Prior to that year, the students from the now demolished South Washington Street school went home or to a restaurant for lunch.

He spoke from the podium the class donated after its 25th reunion.

A committee of five, from Pennsylvania, New Jersey, West Virginia and Maryland, analyzed the 14 applications for the scholarship. It was based on academics, teacher recommendations, and an essay on 'If the Class of 1961 buried a time capsule, what would be in it?'

The class plans an extravaganza in September for its 50th reunion. Over three days they will have a dinner and dance, tour the high school, visit Allison-Antrim Museum, plant a tree at Tayamentasachta and attend a picnic.