Editor: Roleta Smith Meredith Issue 91 March 2007


NOTE FROM JUDY: I googled "ENEMY MINE"and "COMMANDO". Both movies came out in 1985. They may be the last 2 movies shown at the drive-in.

submitted by: Barbara Ann Paugh Patton (WI ‘61)

The picture is of the Skyline Drive Inn on Rt 19 South. A Broad Oaks group of girls would pack the car full, because one night a week, it was a buck a car night. There was usually 7 of us. I drive home from work every day now and it still brings back memories.

submitted by: Ron Cleavenger (WI ‘63)

I believe this is the entrance to the Skyline Drive-In on Rt. 19 South of Clarksburg. Owned by Sammie Caputo. first job I ever had was as a carhop -- $0.23 per hour was pay of $15 for 65 scheduled hours a week-- did not include the 1.5 hours I arrived early to get the place ready nor the 2.00 hours to clean the place after closing time. Hell, even flipping burgers at McDonald's seems great today compared to this !!!!!

submitted by: Sharon Melvin Kinney (WI ‘64)

I believe that picture shows the entrance to the Skyline Drivein movie theatre -- a very popular place when I was in high school. In the 60's it was either the Skyline or the Satellite drive-in eatery -- or both if you could stay out that late. We used to spend Friday night at the Satellite and Saturday night at the drive-in.

submitted by: Linda DeTurk Jones (WI '60)

That looks to me like the Skyline Drive-In on Rt. 19 South of Clarksburg. My husband, J. P. and I shared our first kiss at the Skyline.

submitted by: Wayne White (WI ’60)

I believe this is the Warner Sky line drive in...Located on the road to Weston...This would be RT 19. This was a very nice drive in and was located on top of the hill as you drove up past the sign . Had a good snack bar and nice and open as you were up on top of the hill. They had a lot of good shows and it was not that far from Clarksburg. Closed up years back as other Theatres in malls took over and the drive ins seem to fade away...We still have one in the area which in the Sunset and that is all...

submitted by: Joe Tipper (VHS ’58)

It looks like the Skyline Drive-In on Route 19 South of Clarksburg. I spent many nights there with my lady. Seems like there was a movie filmed there in part with James Caan Rain Something was the name of the movie….ps: I googled James Caan and came up with the "Rain People" filmed in 1969. I haven't researched the content yet. But that may be the film.

submitted by: Chuck Holden (WI ’64)

It looks like the Skyline drive-in. If so the scout troop use to sneak in either in the trunk of a car or climb the steep hill and crawl in under the lights that surrounded the drive-in.

submitted by: Jim White (WI ‘72)

I think that's the entrance to the old Sunset (?) or Skyline (?) drive in on route 19 (or 20) (as you can tell - I've been away from Clarksburg for quite a while!). Anyway, if memory serves me correctly, the Clarksburg Country Club is not too far away from there, as was the old "poor house". (I'm not sure there ever was a "poor house", but my dad called it that - so I took his word for it).

submitted by: Rick Wilson (WI '61)

As usual you've produced a wonderful newsletter. The trivia picture was apparently taken several years after the golden age of Warner's Skyline Drive-In Theater. Yeah, I hate to tell you the number of people that rode, hidden in the trunk down that entrance hill drive, then farther back up to the drive-in. It seemed hours and was really smelly inside the trunk. We always thought a quick minute or two would get us through the ticket booth. It seemed to take forever.

Skyline was a wonderful family place too, miniature train rides, and playgrounds, all the popcorn and junk you could eat. It was just fantastic to wait for the sun to set. All the 'cars' would beep their horns to get the movie started. In my later days it was a great place to take a date (when I could get the car.)

By the time your trivia picture was taken with the Mustang, the drive in had probably been shut down or was in its last days as a grimy sort of double feature purveyor. The grocery store on the corner (just behind the camera's point of view) was still active though.

Just as much fun, right down Rt. 19 was "Breezies" beer joint and a little farther the infamous "Laural Park Inn." Both are long gone. Breezies made quite a spectacular fire. You didn't want to go to the bathroom unless you wanted to see the West Fork river right straight down. Yeah, sister Jeanne introduced me to my first road beer at Breezies. Suffice to say in this more aware world, I was 14. Oh, we all turned out fine.

I sure enjoy all the memories sent in to the Newsletter.
Thanks so much.

submitted by: Jay Sharp (WI ’59)

The picture is the entrance to Skyline Drive In. As you start down the hill you can see a small lake on the right hand side. I worked a deal with the management that allowed me the use of the lake any time I wanted, if I would do a couple of small jobs for them each month during the summer. It was like have my own private lake and the night swimming was great.

submitted by: John Harrison (WI '56)

The picture looks like the entrance to the Warner Skyline Drive-in on I think Rt. 20. I didn't go there much as I did not have a car.. I do remember one evening though. I can't remember the movie, but, oh well, that's a different story.

submitted by: John Teter (WI ’61)

I think that the trivia picture is the Sky LineTheatre located between Stealey and the Clarksburg Country Club on Route 19 (I think). The reason that I am not sure of the name is that I do not think that I EVER went to a drive-in theater except for Ellis Drive-in, which brings back MANY GOOD MEMORIES of my growing-up days in Clarksburg and my buddy Bill Post.

submitted by: Shirley Heidelmeier Williams (WI ‘57)

I do believe the photo is of the Skyline Drive Inn, located on Rt. 19 South. It was owned by Sam Caputo (now deceased). After the drive inn closed, Sam started A-One Exterminating; his son now runs the business. The business is in a building several feet off Rt.19., kind of level with the road. Where you drove down into the drive inn is closed to the public. It is just land as far as I can see, but the son has a home there somewhere, and you can't see it from the road.

submitted by: Mary Sue Clark Spahr (WI ‘56)

This looks like the turnoff to the old Sky Line Drive-In. If I am correct, our neighbors, Chet and Pat Jones, used to pile a bunch of kids including theirs, Patty and "Bub," into their car and take us to the movies. We had a wonderful time, but I don't remember a single movie we ever saw.

submitted by: Gladys Williams (WI ’71)

That is a picture of the old Skyline Drive Inn. Sometime in the late 50's, my father & mother took my sister and I there to see Old Yeller. It poured down the rain and our car got a flat tire during the movie. During our High School years, we would put as many people as possible into a car to go watch a movie there. Sometimes we would even hide in the trunk because we didn't have the money to pay to get in.

submitted by: Kay Corathers Connor (WI ’61)

The picture looks like the entrance to the Skyline Drive-in on Rt. 19 South heading toward West Milford and Weston. The drive-in was built on an old strip mine and the owners lived in a nice house up on the hill beside the theatre area. It was a fun place to go - I remember my Mom and Dad taking us and there were so many children, at that time, 6 of us that we took a blanket and sat beside the car on the ground and take the little kids to play ground during intermission. It was the only drive in that had a real play area for small children. In high school Tom would borrow his father’s VW Van and we would take as many as 12 people on $5 buck a car night. A lot of good memories.

submitted by: Sonny Talkington (WI ’57)

This is the Skyline Drive In on Rt 19. A group called the Stealey Jungle Bunnies, which consisted of Buck Tustin, Ed Henderson, Bob Willet, Bill Millstead, Richard Cox, Cliff Whaley, Kenny Whaley, Ed Westfall, and me. We would hitchhike to the Skyline and swim in the pond below the drive in, Then in the evenings we would all climb in Bill Millstead’s Dad’s ‘53 Chevy and go to the drive in to see the movie, that is of the ones with no dates.

submitted by: Gary Frush (Lost Creek HS ‘59)

The picture is of the Sky Line Drive In. Oops, I missed the memory part, I can remember going to the Skyline at a very young age with my parents, what a treat that was to go see the movie, but the big deal was going to the "snack Bar" for the snacks. Thanks for all your work on the newsletter.

submitted by: Sherri Greitzner Dial (WI ’56)

That is the Sky Line Drive In. The only memory I have of the Skyline Drive is that it was the first drive-in in Clarksburg that my parents took me to see "an outdoor theatre movie" on a big screen where you placed the speakers inside your car door window. I was the one who was chosen to take the speaker off the hook and place it on a "little bit of a rolled up window." I remember my Dad and I walking to the Concession Stand and getting our drinks and a large popcorn to crunch on during the movie. My folks and I thought this was the greatest thing that ever came "down the pike"!!! Was that a lifetime ago, or what!!! HEY!!! It was such a great idea that they are coming back again!! I guess what goes around, comes around, huh!!

submitted by: Bill Losh (RW ’64)

The trivia picture has to be the entrance to Skyline Drive-in Theatre. It was opened in the late '40's or early '50's by Mr. Charles Warner, and was called WARNER'S SKYLINE DRIVE-IN THEATRE. Their projectionist at that time was my neighbor, Ralph Murphy.

During my high school years at RW, I worked summers at Snyder's Drive-In Theatre. Later, during college, I was the projectionist at Lovett's Drive-In at Weston. I lived in Nutter Fort and round trips to Weston seven days a week could get tiring so I would stop at Skyline on the way home and have a snack or talk to the operator there until the show was over---sometimes 2:00am. Skyline changed hands over the years but I'll never forget the many nights just stopping there to visit my good friend and then-owner, Sam Caputo. I haven't been out there for several years and don't know what is now on the site.

My wife (Barbara Moore, WI ‘63) and I enjoy reading the newsletter every month; it's like getting "letters from home" on our computer! Keep up the fantastic work.

submitted by: Phyllis Alton Nichols (WI ’57)

The trivia picture for February looks like the entrance to the Skyline Drive In located on Rt. 19S close to the Country Club Rd. (which was on the other side of the highway). Our group didn't go there much. We liked to sneak kids into the Ellis Drive In. We also liked Skycastle with DJ Dick Hustead up in his little glass booth playing our favorite songs. I personally didn't drive, but somebody could always get the car on week-ends. Usually Rita Drummond because her family had a station wagon, and we would load it up. What memories!!

submitted by: Fred G.Layman (VHS'46)

The latest trivia photo is of the former Warner's Skyline Drive-In-Theatre which was located on Rt. 19 South of Clarksburg. It was opened around 1948 by Charles Warner hence the name Warner's Theatre. In 1952 Sam Caputo, a local business man, took over the theatre and then operated it for the next 33 years closing it in 1985. Mr. Caputo then started the A-1 Exterminating Company with his business place being in East View section of Clarksburg. In the early eighties he had constructed a new warehouse located on Rt. 19 South just below the theatre drive way entrance to sell janitorial supplies and relocated the exterminating business there also. Sam Caputo was a brother to the Caputo Family that had the 12 Garden Fresh Markets in and around Harrison County.

Mr. Caputo died in 1999. His son, Sam, Jr., now is the owner of the business. Mr. Warner's son, Chuck, moved to Fairmont and opened up a photography studio at 307 First Street.

submitted by: (Al) Alfred Starkey (WI '60)

Hey Roleta, the trivia picture this month is the Skyline drive-in sign. We were back east last month visiting the daughter in Virginia. We spent a week in W.Va. visiting and renewing some old memories. One day while driving around we went out that road and turned around at that sign, it still looks a lot like that. I know a lot of us have some good memories at that and the other drive-in theaters.

I, like most of my classmates have retired, a year ago this month. Phoenix was a great place when I had to work, but not the best place to retire in our opinion. So a couple of years ago, after a lot of looking, we bought a 7 acres + place outside of Silver City, New Mexico. Up in the mountains about 6,000 feet, clean air, slower pace, no congestion.

The Chamber of Commerce advertises four gentle seasons, it's becoming a popular retirement place. There is a lot of history here, Indian wars, cattle country, mining (gold, silver,cooper) Geronimo born close here, Billy the Kid lived around here, and others. We just love it, we have great neighbors too, not at all like Phoenix. I always have a project of some kind going on. I have a tractor to play with (or work with that is), now I am grading an area to put up a new storage building. Having a ball.

Look forward to the news letter ever month, it's great what you are doing, please keep it up, thanks so much.


Can you identify the picture above? Please write your guess to: I will only publish correct guesses that include a memory.


submitted by: Roleta

Even though my parents were very creative when making my name, I was not very creative when making my email address. About 13 or so years ago a young man working for me helped me set- up my AOL account. He and I were sitting in the conference room at my office and he was working on my lap top….installing my AOL disc and then working to activate my account. Every once in awhile he would ask me a question which was absolute Greek to me…(no offense to the Greeks but that is an old saying that means I couldn’t understand squat of what he was saying). He said, “So what name do you want to use”? I said, “Roleta, of course”. He said, “Any numbers”? I didn’t know what to say so I said, “Well, there is only one Roleta that I have ever heard of so make it 1”. And thus I gave a painless birth to

Won’t you tell us how you came up with your email address? Of course if it is your name, (as my address) I understand your email. I only told my story as an example. If you have an unusual email please write and share the story with us. Write to

Here is a story about a screen name that now makes sense to me but I never figured it out before:

Dear Roleta:

Our screen name is Our last name is Van Voorhis, and we are BIG Mountaineer fans. So there you go!

Harriett (Danley) Van Voorhis
W.I. Class of '58


submitted by: Jane Hamilton Ross (WI ‘53)

My screen name, meezer83, refers to my Siamese cat. She was a gift from my co-workers at Christmas in 1982, meaning she was born in November of 1982 and I had thought it was 1983, hence the 83. Siamese cats are often referred to as "Meezers". That kitty lived until February of 2002. I now have four Siamese who are now four years old, all but one from the same litter.


Matt Perri, Jr. (VHS ‘56)
Anthony L Bellotte (WI ‘57)
Thomas (Tom) Keenan (WI ‘49)
Frank Geso (VHS ‘50)
Sancie Coffindaffer Smallwood (VHS ‘56)
Kay Corathers Connor (WI ’61)
Vince Leasburg (RW ’56)
Joann Criss Parker (WI ‘57)
Ralph Holder (VHS ’52)


Catherine Custer Burke (WI ‘52)
Holly Furbee Berger (WI ’59)
Jon Darnall (WI ’53)
Skip Bowie (WI ’57)
Kay Cotrill (WI ‘70)
Linda DeTurk Jones (WI '60) was:
is now:


submitted by: Roleta

Even though we have put Katrina in the back of our mind due to the time that has lapsed, many people are still suffering the results. I wrote to Mary and ask her if her home was put back together along with their lives. Following is a letter from her. This gives us a light on how people who were in Katrina are still suffering.

submitted by: Mary K. (McDaniel) Bellisario Class of 1965

Hi Roleta,
Oh, don't get me started.

The hardest thing Gene and I worked to overcome is that since that day -- August 29, 2005 -- when Katrina hit, my husband has had to work in Houston Mondays through Fridays. It's a six-hour drive each way -- home on Friday evening, back to Houston on Sunday evening. Sometimes he flies. His office building in New Orleans was right beside, and connected by walkway to, the SuperDome. All 23 floors were ruined -- the lower ones from flooding, the upper ones from missing windows and subsequent moisture damage and mold inside, and all 23 floors by looting. The elegant shopping mall that used to occupy the first two floors (the New Orleans Centre mall) was converted to an emergency center with doctors and nurses the first few weeks of Katrina. The building now stands empty. So Gene and everyone else in that building have to work in Houston. Most have moved there; we chose not to (my elected position on the school board being one of the reasons.) He is retiring at the end of April, and we'll be able to live a much more normal life then-- nearly two years after Katrina. It'll be like a honeymoon.

Our house? We have a new roof; a new fence around three-quarters of the property, a new garage door; had five very large trees removed (one leaning over the back of the house and one leaning over the front computer room window), restocked over $1000 worth of refrigerated food lost (no electricity for six weeks), and had about 180 bags of yard debris hauled away.

We have a couple small projects that we've been unable to get done (broken garage window and ruined roof on Gene's beloved new (pre-Katrina) aluminum shed in the back yard) -- since workmen only want large projects. Then, just two weeks ago a "leaner" (a tree weakened by a hurricane, but doesn't come down immediately) fell through our new back fence, but we were able to repair that ourselves. Our yard was a giant mess after the hurricane -- good-size tree limbs driven in like spikes, entire trees uprooted, all landscaping gone. But we're working on that!

We were so very lucky, considering what happened to so many of our friends and neighbors! Many of our friends are still in FEMA trailers, and many, many have not rebuilt their homes yet to move back into. These are tax-paying, insurance-holding professionals.

Of the 190,000 people in our area who have applied for federal help in rebuilding their homes over the past year, just 132 people have gotten any checks. And some of those, such as those whose $250,000 brick homes were wiped out during the levee break, received checks for amounts such as $3,000, $1,000 and in one case even $0.00. They sit in federal office buildings in lines for weeks and weeks, just to get an appointment to see someone, then to have an inspector to the house, then to await an award. All the while paying both a mortgage on a ruined home, and current living expenses. It's no wonder the region is very slow in coming back -- most of the area is not the French Quarter, which the rest of the nation sees on TV.

I have quit talking and writing about it for the most part, because other parts of the country are tired of hearing about Katrina. It's "old news." But to people here in the metropolitan area -- not just Slidell-- a year and a half later, it's like we're a third world country, just standing in line, applying for aid. Apparently the U.S. taxpayers have, through Congress, allotted millions and millions of dollars, and they should be proud. But they should also be outraged that very little of that has reached the people that Katrina actually hit. The out-of-state company administering the "Road Home" money as it's called here in LA has been taking in millions and millions, however.

The tornadoes last week swept through several neighborhoods where people were nearing completion of rebuilding their homes from Katrina.

I'll close now. People here -- everywhere-- are so disgusted with the way they've been treated. Billions to rebuild Iraq, but almost nothing trickling down to the individual citizens of this wonderful state -- most of whom didn't even live near water. Lake Pontchartrain that flooded Slidell was five miles away. We had flood insurance, even though we don't live in a flood zone. Not many people in Slidell did.


EDITOR’S NOTE: Before Christmas many of you sent a card or note to Liz. We just wanted her to know that we here in the states appreciate her serving her country. We wished her well. She wishes all of you to know of her situation at this point. Elizabeth is the niece of Buzzy Floyd (VHS 1957). Following is a letter she sent and I wish to share it with you. Liz is only about 5’2” and maybe 110 “soaking wet”. She is pictured above in her “University of Texas” Longhorn hat and holding the Texas Flag. UT is located in Austin where Liz lives and her unit is from Austin. It was probably a chopper like the one pictured that went down and possibly some of those men pictured are the friends who were killed. I didn’t ask Liz as I didn’t figure she needs reminded.

From Liz:

Hello to all,
This is a mass letter to everyone…I just wanted to give you all an update of what has been going on in the recent weeks.

On the 20th of January, the 36th CAB (My Brigade) lost four soldiers due to a horrific crash. Contact with home was not allowed until all family members of the fallen soldiers had been notified. It was a rough week seeing that we lost another aircraft but fortunately everyone survived.. The violence has since picked up and therefore our work has almost doubled. I have become good friends with some infantry guys and I hear a lot more of what goes on. These are the same infantry soldiers who secure the area so our aviation recovery team can go out. It’s interesting in a way how we all linked up….

Through all the struggling and hard work we are still kicking and probably a lot harder how. We are motivated to get back home in one piece and see our loved ones….you are the ones who motivate me in my daily mission. I wanted to thank you all for that.

This month is my one year mark of being away from home and those I love….it’s almost hard to believe. I still have some time to go but that time seems to pick up the speed every now and again. It’s ice. I guess it doesn’t seem so bad when your coworkers/comrades become your second family.

I have been trying to keep in shape and working out….I really don’t need to lose weight but I can’t really gain it if I wanted to. I’m still completely obsessed with my music and now have bought an external hard drive to store more… computer is now full. It’s kind of funny.

I hope all is well with everyone and I do want to apologize for not communicating better or in a faster pace. Thanks for all the support, gifts, letters, packages and just love. It is more than amazing.

Thanks always,

B CO 449th ASB 36th CAB
APO AE 09391


If you have a class picture of the RW Graduation Class Picture of 1941 would you please contact Joy Gregorie. One of her friends at “ Hacker’s Creek Pioneer Folks” would like a copy of the picture. You may contact Joy at:


submitted by: Bill Meredith (Monongah ’57)

I just finished reading an article in the March, 2007 edition of the "Wonderful West Virginia" magazine. It was titled "A Taste of Home" by Christy McCloud West, who is from Harrison County, WV. A 1989 graduate of WVU, Christy tells of her career taking her to various locations out of West Virginia, and how much she missed the Clarksburg pepperoni rolls. She didn't realize that the only place in the country they are sold is north central West Virginia. As I've written previously, this is probably because many years ago, Senator Robert Byrd got an exemption for north central W.Va. bakeries from federal meat inspections, thus allowing them to continue making pepperoni rolls. The article is well written and would be worth reading if you can locate the magazine.


submitted by: Kay Corathers Conner (WI ’61)

Bernice Corathers, my Mom, now 86, said that she got this recipe from Old Mr. Criner who owned a beer parlor in North View when she first got married in 1938.

1 lb. ground chuck
1 lg. onion chopped
1 T. garlic powder
2 t. salt
2 t. black pepper
1 C water
1 quart tomato juice
2 T. - Red Chili powder (more depending on your taste)

Pour water on ground chuck and mix well then add everything else and let simmer for most of the day so that sauce consistency thickens. If you boil it fast you can do it in a couple of hours but must be careful it doesn’t stick and burn and the flavor is not as good. I think the chili is actually better if prepared a day or 2 ahead of time. Also it freezes very well. When I make it I freeze in small packets to use when we want.

This generally makes enough to serve 20 to 30 people. This recipe is very mild as my family does not like hot chili. Depending on individual taste you can increase the garlic - salt - pepper - and/or chili powder. Some people also like to add hot red pepper flakes/seeds.

One other note on WV hotdogs - be sure you use good beef or pork wieners - chicken/turkey wieners just do not taste the same.


submitted by: Roleta Smith Meredith (WI ’59)

I love hearing from you…please keep writing. I receive close to 100 emails a day. These emails are from family members, local friends, organizations, people concerning the newsletter, talking to old friends about things that don’t make the newsletter, jokes, chain letters, cartoons and many hyperlinks. I love keeping in touch. Often I receive multiple emails with the same messages. I seldom share these things as I know it is making its round through the Internet and you will be seeing it soon. Some things I receive I want to share with you via the newsletter and if I am not sure that is what the “sender” had in mind, I write and ask permission to print the letter. Today I have a hyperlink to share with you that is absolutely beautiful. Bill and I have done a lot of traveling and we think that there is no place that we have ever been that is as beautiful as the good old UNITED STAES OF AMERICA. So here is a hyperlink for you to enjoy. Turn up your speakers


Bill Akin sent a check to the WIN Scholarship from the sale of his West Virginia Baseball book. If you are interested in talking to Bill about his book or purchasing a copy, please contact him at

Judy Daugherty Kimler (WI ’59) has a project of making and selling CD’s of the WI Newsletter to raise money for the WIN Scholarship. All profits from the sale of the CD’s go to the Scholarship Fund. Great job Judy. The recipients of the scholarships thank you.

If you would like to purchase a CD which contains all of the past WI Newsletters, please contact Judy at The cost is $10.00. The disc is programmed to walk you through the use of it. All you need do is place it in your disc drive.

Sue Selby Moats has had a project for two years now. She makes a beautiful quilt with squares donated by several kind people who want to help her. Both years the quilt has been raffled off and the winning ticket drawn at the CLARKSBURG REUNION PICNIC in Sarasota, Florida. All profit from the sale of the tickets goes directly to the WIN Scholarship. This is a marvelous project.

If you would like to contact Sue about the quilt project for next year, write her at The colors have been chosen. She needs all the quilt squares she can get. So won’t you help with this project also?

A million thanks to these industrious people who are helping provide a scholarship to a teen from Clarksburg, WV---YOUR HOME TOWN!


The above cartoon by John Cooper (WI 1949)---John drew cartoons while in high school….the cartoon above was one of them. Watch the next issue for more on John Cooper.


submitted by: Roleta Smith Meredith (WI '59)

Many of you have been readers of the newsletter for several years and through your emails we have become new friends. Some of you are friends from years ago and we have renewed our friendships. You have learned to know my family but you haven’t had a picture to put a face with the names. In December our family had a new family picture made and I wanted to share it with you and thought this the quickest way for me to reach the greatest number of people at one time.

Below is the picture: I am sitting in the center with Bill standing behind me. Our son-in-law, Jack, is standing on the left of the picture (with glasses) Our daughter, Vaneta, is sitting on the left of the picture, beside me and in front of her husband. Her two children are sitting in front of her-Tiana (Vaneta’s oldest) with the dark hair is sitting in front with the baby of the family, our little red head, Addison.

Over to the right side of the picture is Victor standing with his wife, Martha, and his four daughters in front of them….on the right is Chelsea, then their youngest Aubrie, then Hayley and the farthest left in this family group is the eldest, Tiffany.

As you can see it is a real female group…only 3 guys! I am so proud of our wonderful children and 6 beautiful grand daughters.


submitted by: Marlene Parsons Andre (RW ’59)

Yes, it is Becky Hollandsworth Day, WI class of 1959 WI. She lives in Houston , Texas, Still working in the Education Field. She is my ex Sister-in-law, we are still friends.

submitted by: Jim Alvaro (WI '56)

Could that precious child be Becky Hollandsworth whose sister Ann was in my class throughout Alta Vista, in beautiful Broad Oaks, Central, and WI.?

submitted by: Bob Davis (WI ‘59)

Looks like Ms. Becky Hollandsworth and the picture from Alta Vista Grade School--Grade 1--1947 - 1948. Wonder if she still has the bows in her hair and she is probably as "cute" now as she was then. I was in school with her for 12 good years--and those years flew by fast! That was almost 60 years ago!! Boy she is getting old!

submitted by: Fred Alvaro (WI ’59)

The precious child for February is Becky Hollandsworth. Attended grade school (Alta Vista), Central and W.I. with Becky. After graduation, lost track of her, but she reappeared when I learned she and my wife, Karen Poe (B-port HS '59) were roommates at Fairmont State in 1959-60.


Do you recognize this child? Write your guess to I will only use correct guesses.


EDITOR’S NOTE: I know most of you rode a bus in Clarksburg. Write and share your memories of this with us. Let’s hear from some of you who rode the Hartland/Chestnut Hills bus on the days when it was icy and snowy and the bus could hardly maneuver the hills and curves. Write to:

submitted by: Sonny Talkington (WI ’57)

When I was in the second grade we caught the bus in Broad Oaks, where my Grandmother Talkington lived, she had given me a pup. The only way I had to bring the pup home was to put her in my big pants pocket. We got a transfer to come home to Stealey, the bus driver didn't know I had the pup. The cost to ride the bus at that time was 25 cents a person. I also rode the bus to school at Central Jr. High and WI, we purchased tickets for school students and a discount price and these were used as fare.

submitted by: John Timberlake (WI ’48)

I rode the bus to or from school in bad weather. The Broad Oaks bus schedule seemed to mesh with school hours. I walked to school in the morning, home at lunch most days, and then home after school. Unless it was raining or snowing, I developed a run/walk going home for lunch, I could go from WI to home in 15 minutes, eat lunch in fifteen minutes and go back to school in 15. This left 15 min for socializing. The bus company did offer student tickets. I am unsure of the price, but it seems that you could buy sixty to 100 tickets for around seven dollars, which would be around three or four cents a ride. A regular fare was about seven cents, so this would be about half fare. Hardly any one at WI had a car or access to a car unlike today.

submitted by: Joe Malone (WI ’52)

The following is not directly about the City Bus lines but your request opened up a stream of consciousness. The "bus" connection is in there somewhere.

As I grew up on Rosemont Ave., Chestnut Street and Fifth Ave. I had little occasion to patronize the City bus system. Everything I needed was within walking distance. Of course, walking was much more the acceptable method to move from point A to point B in those days. It wasn't until I was in the seventh grade that I learned the benefits of bus travel.

In 1947, I was employed by Wilbur A. Marr Jewelers on Court Street at my first "W-2" job. I actually had to procure a Social Security Card (currently encased in yellowed plastic in my wallet). As many of you may recall, Wilbur Marr owned and operated (with apologies to the Williams family) the finest jewelry store in town. He carried only "high-end products" - Lenox china, Gorham silverware, Girard Peregeaux watches - and the highest quality selection of diamonds in Central West Virginia. (I returned to buy my wife's engagement ring there in 1961) He made a handsome living off of weddings and other special occasions for many years.

Mr. Marr hired me as his "Gofer." As a raw-boned pre-teen, I performed whatever "chores" needed done around the store. I washed windows, polished floors, unpacked/ washed/polished fine china and sterling silver products and delivered purchased items to customers at their homes. It was this last chore that put me on the City buses. As I was too young to drive, I was given bus fare and whatever precious item needed to be taken to whatever customer along with directions to safely deliver the package before day's end. For the next 3-4 years, I toured the city by bus and on foot to deliver my wares. It was a far cry from the FEDEX, UPS and DHL services of today, but those were different times, weren't they? There was no "Let Brown Do It" back then. But the "system" worked and everyone was happy - as I recall.

I continued to perform these duties throughout the store's move to the Stonewall Jackson Hotel. The Marrs were kind enough to accommodate my after-school sports activities and offer me employment until I was 16 years-old. At that point, I moved on to summers only at the Palace Furniture store (but that's another story). Mr. Marr was a quiet, thoughtful man , albeit demanding and particular in every aspect of his work. I can still smell the sweet aroma of his pipe tobacco wafting throughout the store. He taught me to appreciate unique merchandise. On each sales slip was printed, "The sweetness of low prices never equals the bitterness of low quality." That is a strange concept in today's world of WalMart, Sam's and CostCo, but one worth holding onto. As Crosby, Stills and Nash sing, "Teach - Your Children Well..."

Not a "bus story," but then you know I often drift... Thanks, Roleta for providing a forum to remember - Wilbur A, Marr.


submitted by: Debra Strother Bolden (WI ’72)

You do such a wonderful job composing the WI Newsletter. I really enjoy reading it, and appreciate all of the hard work that you put into it. I have kept a copy of a USAIR magazine from a flight in 1987 with a short story by James S. Wamsley about going to his 40th class reunion. The whole story would be too long to print but the last paragraph is such a sweet commentary on the connection we feel to each other. Here is the excerpt:

"Here were the faces of friends unseen across four decades. How amazing to discover the imperishable unchanged personality within each visage!

I had simply underestimated the human bond, the credential that would stand always by our names. I decided it must go something like this:

We were born at the same time, in the same place, and we grew up in the same classes and schoolyards and soda fountains. We heard the whistles of the same mills, watched the smoke from the same locomotives, and smelled the fragrance of the same apple blossoms. Our popular songs, radio broadcasts, newspaper stories, and giddy fads touched our contemporaries in a thousand other towns, but never just the way they touched us, because we were different, not just singly, but different together. Now, still tramping though the vast complexities of human life and death, we stay forever imprinted and linked by who we were, and in gathering together we have reconfirmed our identities. These well-lined faces are glad to see me. I am glad to see them. We must have loved each other better than we knew."

submitted by: Sancie Coffindaffer Smallwood (VHS '56)

I couldn't believe this when I started reading the Newsletter. Didn't even know it existed until Buzz Floyd informed me. It's really great.

Please add me to your notification list. I do have one reservation, however, and that is IT is called the WI Newsletter!!! You can understand that because I am a "56" VHS graduate!!!! Well, need I say more?

EDITOR’S NOTE: Oh, Sancie we accept you anyway just because YOU ARE FROM CLARKSBURG. We have forgotten all those old rivalries. (Well, almost forgotten)

You can’t help the fact that your parents made you live in Victory territory!

submitted by: Tom Keenan (WI '49)

Just a note, it is a very nice thing that you do for a lot of people. What is amazing is how much people liked Clarksburg and had fun when they grew up. I am sorry that more of my class, including myself have not contributed like some of the others.

EDITOR’S NOTE: It is never too late for anyone to contribute!

submitted by: Matt Perri, Jr. (VHS ‘56)

My name is Matt Perri, Jr. I graduated in 1956 from Victory...some of my classmates now refer to me as Matt, but most still refer to me as Junior! My wife Rita is a graduate of WI...class of 1955. Her maiden name was DePolo. We will be married for 50 years this July. My life began when I started dating her at age 14.

I received the WI Newsletter from Buzzy Floyd, a classmate of mine, and read it with very much interest.

I knew Freddie Layman when I was a kid and was able to send him an e-mail as a result of the information in the Newsletter.

Also, I was deeply moved by the video of the immigrants down at Spelter. I went to Jr. High there, where I first met Ron Gonzalez. Also, I know Norma Diaz, as she was a neighbor to by brother Pete and my sister in law Janice....all of their married life. Norma had a tremendously positive influence on my nieces, Pamela, Ruth Ann, and Priscilla.

Ray's snack bar was probably the first public place where I ever ate outside of the home...what a wonder man...Ray!

Please include me in the newsletter mailing. If I can ever get Rita to agree to make a trip to Florida, we will definitely come to the picnic. We will be married 50 years this July.

Thank you so much for your wonderful efforts!

submitted by: Marianna Waroblak (WI '56)

I am prompted to write you a little note because I have not contributed anything to the Newsletter in a long time. Sometimes, I don't even get a chance to read the newsletters right away because I still work full time at my teaching job at Colorado Timberline Academy in Durango, Colorado. However, I do print every issue off, when I get the chance, on the laser printer at school and I have saved them all. I have always had, and still have, a very demanding job and have surpassed my age 65 retirement by three years now - still working fulltime at a job that requires a lot of outdoors stuff such as backpacking which I also still do. Therefore, though I may not be able to contribute, I am still quite interested.

I also cannot attend the FL picnic this year. I was only able to do so one time, two winters ago. Just doesn't coincide with our spring break at school. I will be there once I retire. This is my 29th year working at this very interesting boarding school. I recall having written you a letter about it.

I think, like most of us, we all keep West Virginia always in our hearts. It is the way of having been born there. I know of no other state with such loyal past and present citizens. It is a blessing.

Thank you, once again, for taking the time to do this. I well know that such things require dedication and a lot of work. Thanks also to those who so faithfully help you. I know that the picnic will be a huge success. Enjoy, and will look forward to reading all about it. Take care


This is a new section and I hope you will respond. We all wonder what you have been doing since graduation from WI. Please send me a little bio about your work, marriage, children, travels, hobbies, where you live now, etc. Basically who you are, and what you have been doing since high school. Now remember this is a newsletter so give us the brief version….Write

This month we are getting to know:

Anthony L. Bellotte (WI ‘57)
Vice President, Special Programs Division

Upon graduation from Washington Irving High School in Clarksburg, West Virginia in 1957, Anthony joined the United States Navy and was trained as a Communication Technician in the Naval Security Group. He later graduated from the Naval Intelligence School in Anacostia, Maryland, he served five years at various duty stations and earned an Honorable Discharge. Anthony was recruited and hired by the National Security Agency in 1964 and worked there until his Civil Service retirement in 1996. During this period he served in many positions both at overseas and CONUS locations and was the Chief of Station during two of these assignments. He also was awarded the Meritorious Civilian Service Medal.

One week after retirement he was recruited by Analytic Systems Engineering Corp, later purchased by ACS, as a program manager and then Director of Operations and finally Vice President of Intelligence Operations. After 8 years Lockheed Martin (LM) purchased ACS and Mr. Bellotte was made the Director of National Security Programs and Information Assurance in Elkridge and Columbia Maryland. In an answer to Air Force requirements Mr. Bellotte was able to forge a Consortium for construction of Radar sites in the Colombian jungle to locate and seize low flying aircraft carrying contraband. This was a highly successful effort.

Mr. Bellotte completed his BA degree from the University of Maryland in 1972, using the G.I. Bill and was then sponsored by the National Security Agency to obtain his MBA from Central Michigan University in 1982. He graduated with honors from both schools with a 3.6 and 3.7 average respectively.


submitted by: Jane Hamilton Ross (WI ‘53)

You and Judy do a marvelous job with the newsletter! I read it as soon as it arrives in my mailbox and look forward to it each month.

You asked for reminiscences of Miss Swiger - I remember her as probably the youngest teacher at WI when I entered in 1949 (I graduated in May of 1953). She was the sponsor of B Square, the girls' counterpart to the boys' Hi Y. I also had her for Social Studies as a freshman and was fortunate enough to be chosen for B Square as a senior. She had get togethers for the girls at her home and was always available to listen to all our troubles, whatever the source of them might be. I had always hoped she would meet some fine young man and marry. I occasionally went back to visit until we moved to Louisiana for a while and I lost touch with her. She was a very witty, gracious and very diplomatic lady.

submitted by: Marcia Porter Heinz (WI ’65)

I remember Ms. Swiger because she let me use her classroom during lunch time. I could not go downstairs very easy with the wheelchair so my friends and I used her room. It was not as crowded as downstairs but I remember having a lot of fun.

That was the year there were four Marcias around--Marcia Booth, Marcia Young, Marcia Fox and myself Marcia Porter.

Ms. Swiger will be missed.

submitted by: John Timberlake (WI ’48)

She was my freshman English teacher in 1944. She was very nice and I always regretted trying to be the class clown-- John Snyder was a natural. WE competed to see who got to be Puck in Midsummer's Night Dream, John won in a minute. I enjoyed her class because I was introduced to Sir Walter Scott and became a avid reader. Her younger sister Judy also went to WI, I think class of '46 or '47. I ran into her years later when she was a guidance counselor. Too bad they didn't have counselors in my day I could have used one.



CLARKSBURG - David G. Walters, 63, of Vienna, WV, died January 27, 2007, at the residence of his daughter, with whom he resided for the past 2 years.

He was born on February 22, 1943, in Clarksburg, a son of the late Elza and Mildred Walters.

He is survived by his daughter, B. Kimberly Ayers and her husband Robert, Vienna; three grandchildren, Richard and Megan Ayers, both of Vienna, and John Renzelli, Clarksburg; and one brother, George E. Walters and his wife Sharon, Charlotte, NC.

In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his wife, Barbara Freese Walters, and daughter, Melissa Renzelli.


Mary Frances Imperial Ramsey, 65, of Brookview Dr., Bridgeport, passed away Sunday evening, February 11, 2007, at her residence following an extended illness.

She was born December 16, 1941, in Clarksburg, a daughter of the late Joseph A. and Mary Theresa Pandora Imperial.

Her husband of 45 years, Bernard C. Ramsey Jr., whom she married May 12, 1961, and one son, Dr. Michael C. Ramsey of Columbia, MD, survive her.

In addition to her parents, four brothers and one sister preceded her in death.

Mary attended Catholic Schools for the first eleven years of her education, and ultimately graduated from Washington Irving High School with the Class of 1959. Beginning at age 16, she was employed by Parsons-Souders and finally by Stone & Thomas Department Store in downtown Clarksburg as a Sales Associate until her retirement in 1987.



Claudia Elizabeth Kopp, 62 of Shawnee, GA died February 17, 2007. Mrs. Kopp formerly of Warrenton, VA was a homemaker and former office manager for Inviro Medical Devices. She is survived by her husband Bob Kopp (WI 1956) and their children.

If you wish to send cards to Bob you may do so at:

Bob Kopp
3513 Highland Farm Ct.
Suwanee, Ga. 30024


Eleanor Ruth Cowgill, mother of William Glenn Cowgill (WI 1959) and his sister Joanne Cowgill Post, passed away on February 21, 2007. She was living in Weston with Joanne.


James Harry Allen passed away on Wednesday, January 24, 2007 at the age of 66 years. Beloved husband of Mary Eliza Swiger Allen. Son of the late Donald and Geneva Allen. Father of Liz Allen. Published in The Times-Picayune on 1/28/2007.

Are you Irish? Wish you were Irish?
Are you only Irish on March 17th?
There are 2 kinds of people,
the Irish and the ones who wish they were.

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