Iowa Central City High School Class of '45,

Contributed by, DuWayne Beebe

Class of '45, at a 1997 get together.
L to R, Back Row:
LeRoy LaBarge, DuWayne Beebe
L to R, Front Row:
Anna Fuller Ricklef, Norma Hart Oliphant, Mildred Johnson Carley

The Class Of 1945 Plus Fifty Seven Years

Our class was unique in that it was what might be called “ The Class of World War II.”
We entered high school in the Fall of 1941 while America was still at peace. Three months later we were at war.
When we graduated in May 1945, the Germans had just surrendered and the Japanese surrender was to follow that September.
Everything changed in America when on December 7, 1941 we were attacked by the Japanese at Pearl Harbor in the Hawaiian Islands.
Regardless of what the average American had thought of the state of affairs of our country and the world; almost immediately everyone “Stepped up to Bat” in an all out war effort.
Central City felt the heartbreak of the war almost immediately when it was notified of the death of one of its young men at Pearl Harbor. And in the days following as word was received of other local boys who were stationed in the western Pacific, being reported as missing in action or being taken prisoner by the Japanese. Little did we know at the time the treatment the prisoners would receive at the hands of the Japanese.
Within a few months the casualty reports also began coming in from our actions in the African and European war fronts.
Our Class of ‘45 entered high school with thirty three students enrolled. By the time we graduated we were only fourteen, twelve of the original and two who had moved into our district.
Some of our classmates were to drop out because they were needed on the farm to do the work that had been done previously by a brother who was now in the service. Others dropped out to go to work on other farms or to work in the industrial plants of Cedar Rapids and surrounding areas.
The Collins Radio Company went from the basement and garage of Art Collins’s house, to multiple factories working twenty four hours a day, seven days a week, supplying Military Communications Equipment.
Amana Refrigeration went from a small company that was noted for building Meat and Produce coolers for grocery stores and related businesses, to being a major supplier of refrigerated coolers and freezers for our Navy ships.
War Bond drives, Savings Stamps and Salvage Collections became a everyday thing.
School children bought saving stamps to stick in booklets and they in turn could be used as credit toward the purchase of a War Bond. The cheapest bond being one that was purchased for $17.50 and ten years later it could be turned in for $25.00.
Scrap metal drives for all kinds of metal were held. Of a particular need was the tin tubes that tooth paste and similar products came in and collection boxes was placed for items of this type in Browns Drug Store and the grocery stores. Rubber products were another item that was needed for the war effort.
These were the days before the wide spread use of plastic and synthetic rubber products came into widespread use.
Also there was house to house collections of old silk hose and used household greases.
Old silk stockings were recycled for use as Powder bags for use in the large caliber guns of our fighting ships, and the household grease was used to make glycerin.
A nation wide, “Thirty Five Mile Per Hour” speed limit was imposed in the interest of saving gasoline, tires and the vehicles themselves. This speed limit also became a safety factor as people began to drive on tires that were long past their normal replacement time.
Rationing became a way of life and included many products too numerous to mention.
Permits had to be obtained for the replacement of any tire. The average person who used their vehicle only for personal use, such as to and from town or to drive to school was able to get only recapped tires. The quality of these tires was many time very poor and would only run a few hundred or thousand miles.
Commercial vehicles had to have their tires inspected every six months or 5000 miles, which ever occurred first.
The “A” coupon was the most common and it was good for the purchase of three gallons of gasoline per week.
The “B” and “C” coupons were issued for people with various needs and would let you purchase five gallons of gasoline per week.
The “E” coupons were for non-highway use gasoline and would let you purchase one gallon per week.
Then there was the “R” coupon that was allowed for Farmers and others having a need for larger volumes of “off road” gasoline. These were good for ten gallons each.
Fuel Oil
Fuel oil for home usage was given in units of ten gallon each and was issued based on the amount you normally needed for a season etc.
Sugar coupons were valued at five pounds each and was usually sufficient for any family usage and with careful usage could allow for some accrual of sugar for the canning season. There was also added sugar allowances for canning purposes.
Processed Foods
There was rationing of certain processed foods but I am not sure what they may have been.
Meats, Fats and Cheese
Most all of these items were rationed, especially the processed things.
Yes, even shoes were rationed and a coupon was needed for their purchase.
Those of us lucky enough to be living on the farm did not feel the effects of some of the rationing because of our usage of farm grown products. Also if the car was running low on gasoline, the problem could sometimes be helped by the borrowing of a couple of gallons of fuel from the farm tractor supply.
When the war started, the Central City News-Letter made a decision to continue printing all of the news that was of a concern to our home area and to leave the war news to the regional papers. As time continued and there was a problem getting help and there became a problem of getting enough newsprint, they cut back on the number of pages and cut out some of the columns that they had ran in the past.
Hardly a week passed but what there was news of another member of the Military from our area who was missing, injured or had died in the service of his country. Some weeks the News-letter carried the report of two or three such happenings on its front page.
But, on with the story of our Class of 1945.

1941 - 1942 School Year...

Entered High school in the fall of 1941...

Thirty three students in freshman class...
Elinor Adams
Fred Akers
DuWayne Max Beebe
Joan Lorine Betzer
Rita Boyer (9th grade only)
Dean Caryl
James Christenson (9th grade only)
John Christenson (9th grade only)
Wasia Cogdill (9th grade only)
Ruth Davis
Dorothy Drexler (9th grade only)
Arnold Faltinson (1st semester only)
Anna Faye Fuller
LaVerne Henderson
Mildred Johnson
Melvin Kent (1st semester only)
Evelyn King
LeRoy LaBarge
Rita McNamara
Velma Morse (9th grade only)
Ruth Neiderhouser
Walter O’Conner
Arthur Paul (9th grade only)
Mary Louise Peck
Norman Pollock
Roger Robison
Bernita Ross
DeVere Slife
Harlan Smith (9th grade only)
William Smith
Marion Snyder (9th grade only)
Wilbur Swanson
John Duane Zimmerman
From the Black and Red... (Central City School News column) for Sept. 18, 1945... Freshman Class sponsor: Mr. Smid
President: Roger Robison
Vice-President: John Zimmerman
Sec. & Treas: Dean Caryl
Our School Faculty...(1941-1942)... Superintendent: George W. Hansen, Algebra I &II, Geometry
Principal: Miss Opal Puderbaugh, General Math, Typing
Miss Helen Melcher, Modern History, English I, Domestic Science I
Milton Mussehl, Music
Miss Mildred Preston, English III, Grammar, English 10, Public Speaking
Mr. Schaefer, General Math, Elementary Science
Mr. Ino Smid, Typing, Manual Training, Bookkeeping Miss Tappon,
Miss Marguerite Walsh, English II
Mrs. Ruth Wendelburg, Biology
NOTE... Faculty information is partly from memory of various class mates and from notes supplied by Barb Dudley, the current high school secretary who has been most helpful.
From the Black and Red... for September 25, 1941... Freshman Initiation
The sophomores had so many class meetings and committee meetings the week of September 15, that at once the high school began to surmise the weighty burden of initiating the freshman was their problem.
Friday morning saw the freshman in their various garbs, and carrying either baskets, dolls, teddy bears, sleigh bells or some little child’s toy -- for this time every person was to represent a young child.
In the program at one o’clock they were called to the front of the assembly in pairs and the boy introduced the girl to the high school and junior high students. Then each couple had to kneel and recite the paragraph they’d learned for salute and the upper classmen during the day, “I am a little aggravating, abhorring, accelerating, acrimonious, affectionate, alluring, ambiguous, atrocious, atavistic, avaricious freshman.” Marion Snyder was by far the star of this performance. At 7:30 the program continued in the Gymnasium. Individuals were required to recite Mother Goose rhymes, there was a boxing match, the juniors and seniors gave numbers.
In the stunts by the freshman, John Zimmerman by far outdistanced in his ability to portray a young lady’s actions as she prepared to go to a party. For the new students, Everett Broessel was a favorite with musical numbers. For the new teachers, Miss Straul got the most applause in showing us how a young man should act when calling on his lady friend.
Further entertainment was provided by dancing -- the sophomores treated the freshmen to ice cream bars. The party ended at ten o’clock.
December 7, 1941...
A Sunday... Pearl Harbor...
December 8th, we all sat in the assembly and listened to President Roosevelt speech on the radio and his “Declaration of War“...
As the school year ended, we, the .freshman class, were indoctrinated to the school custom of throwing our Ink Bottles out the south windows to break on the sidewalk below. They made really nice big ink blotches on the walk. If caught you were also subject to Cleanup Detail on the walk.(ask one who knows)
From the Black & Red... May 7, 1942...
Perfect attendance for the 1941 - 1942 school year:
Freshman Class: Anna Faye Fuller Evelyn King John Zimmerman
From the C/C Newsletter dated May 14, 1942... We are told that Twenty nine students graduated from high school in the Class of 1942.
We are also given the following list of High School Honor Roll students for the year.
Senior Class: Betty Bickford, 94.0; Donald Brunen, 92.5; Rita Crowley, 92.8; Martha Davis, 92.5; Lila Hills, 98.0; Betty Pratt, 91.8; Ruth Ross, 96.7; Hazel Sinkey, 90.0; Lynn Slater, 92.7; Lucile Smith, 94.8; Jean Wilmott, 90.6.
Junior Class: Audrey Beasley, 90.0; Eva Bickford, 92.8; Bernice Hall, 92.0; Lee Jamison, 90.0; Kent Shakespeare, 96.3; Merlyn Truesdale, 95.7.
Sophomore Class: Blanch Bliss, 94.5; Shirley Johnson, 95.5; Ellen Ross, 92.5; Virginia Sherbon, 95.5; Merna Truesdall, 91.3; Vaneta Wall, 97.2; Mary Lou Wilson, 90.6.
Freshman Class (Class of ‘45): Joan Betzer, 92.2; Mary Louise Peck, 91.8; William Smith, 90.6; Marian Snyder, 90.6.

1942 - 1943 School Year...
The Class of ‘45 have the following students starting the school year.
DuWayne Max Beebe
Joan Lorine Betzer
Dean Caryl
Wealtha Conner (Freshman year at Libertyville, Iowa)
Ruth Davis
Anna Faye Fuller
Norma Jean Hart (Freshman year at Anamosa, Iowa)
LaVern Henderson
Mildred Johnson
Evelyn King
LeRoy Clifford LaBarge
Rita McNamara
Ruth Neiderhouser
Walter O’Conner
Mary Louise Peck
Norman Pollock
Roger Robison
Bernita Ross
Dorothy Sanders (Transferred from Rose Hill, Iowa)
William Smith (1st semester only)
Wilbur Swanson
Floyd Young
John Duane Zimmerman
Class Election... Class Sponsor is Milton Mussehl (Music Teacher)
President: Wealtha Conner
Vice President: Anna Faye Fuller
Sec. & Treasurer: Evelyn King
School Facility:
Superintendent: George W. Hansen, Algebra I & II, Geometry
Principal: Miss Opal Puderbaugh, General Math, Typing
Ino Smid, Typing, Bookkeeping, Manual Training, Boys Coaching Staff,
Milton Mussehl, Sponsor of Sophomore Class, Music,
Marguerite Walsh, Sponsor of Junior Class, English II
Mrs. Ruth Wendelburg, Sponsor of Senior Class, Biology
Miss Helen Melcher, Sponsor of Freshman Class, Modern History, English I and Home Economics
From the Central City News-letter... January 28, 1943...
An item of interest.
Silk, Nylon stockings and Kitchen Fats Collection
A house to house canvass will be conducted in Central City Saturday afternoon, Jan. 30, for old silk stockings and waste fats. Mrs. Madge Henderson will represent the American Legion Auxiliary and Mrs. Clem Robison the Service Women. Silk hose are used for powder bags which in turn are used in the firing of the large caliber guns. Fats are used in the manufacture of glycerin.
All housewives are asked to have their old hose and waste kitchen fats ready for collection Saturday afternoon.
Country folk are asked to leave fats and hose at the home of Mrs. Madge Henderson. It is hoped that a great amount of these vital articles will be collected.
From the Black and Red... May 6, 1943...
Wednesday afternoon of last week the Sophomore class presented its assembly program. The program consisted of musical numbers by Wealtha Conner, Anna Fuller and Mary Louise Peck and Mr. Mussehl; A boxing bout with John Zimmerman, Floyd Young and LeRoy LaBarge; and a play written by Gene Burmeister.
Walter O’Conner was master of ceremonies.

1943 - 1944 School Year...
Eighteen Juniors at start of year, two added later in year...
Robert Albin (Transferred in from West Branch, Iowa- early ‘44)
DuWayne Max Beebe
Joan Betzer
Dean Caryl (1st semester only)****
Wealtha Conner
Anna Faye Fuller
Norma Jean Hart
Mildred Johnson
Norma Jean Hart
Evelyn King (1st semester only)
LeRoy Clifford LaBarge
Rita McNamara
Ruth Neiderhouser
Mary Louise Peck
Roger Robison
Charles Sparrgrove (Transferred in from Lamont, Iowa- 1st semester only)
Wilbur Swanson
LaVerne Wroblewski (Transferred in from Lisbon, Iowa- early 1944)
Floyd Young
John Duane Zimmerman
NOTE: Dean later completed the requirements and was given a diploma March 16, 1959.
School Faculty: Superintendent: George W. Hansen, Algebra 9 and 10 and Plane Geometry.
Principle: Fred Smolik, American History, American Government, Modern history and Agriculture. (first year back in CCHS, had taught here 1930/1933)
Loletta Bakke, Typing, Vocal and instrumental music (first semester only)
Z. Frances Gillespie, English 9, Home Economics and Biology
Mildred Preston, English 10, grammar, public speaking, English Literature and Physical Education
Belva Rollins, General Math and Advanced Arithmetic
Ino Smid, Physics, Bookkeeping, Manual Training, Boys Athletics and Physical Training.
From the Black and Red...September 9, 1943...
Junior Class Sponsor & Officers.
Class sponsor: Mr Smolik
President: Dean Caryl
Vice-president: Norma Jean Hart
Secretary: Charles Sparrgrove
Treasurer: Floyd Young
From the Black and Red... September 23, 1943...
Two items:
Junior Play...
“ People are Funny” by James Stone, was chosen for the junior play.
The two main characters are; Jessie Budd, an ambitious mother, played by Mary Louise Peck and her son, Kenneth Budd, played by Floyd Young. The rest of the cast consist of:
John (Pop) Budd, DuWayne Beebe, Jessies husband; Helene Budd, Anna Fuller, her older daughter; Betty Budd, Wealtha Conner, her younger daughter; Winnie Wehle, Mildred Johnson, the girl next door; Elmer Wehle, LeRoy LaBarge, the father next door; Jack Whitman, John Zimmerman, young man from Chicago; Arthur Fairchild, Dean Caryl, a friend of Jack’s; Florence Fairchild, Norma Jean Hart, a social queen; Gladys Bliss, Ruth Neiderhauer, her secretary; Olga Oqiuspanski, Ruth Davis, her traveling companion; Prudence Paine, Dorothy Sanders, an Aunt from the country; Pamela Paine, Evelyn King, her darling daughter.

The Wildcats won their second game from Coggon by a score of 4 to 3.Our batteries were Andrews and Caryl, their batteries were Ironsides and Reeves.
Andrews walked six and struck out 14, while Reeves struck out nine and walked two. It was a close game all the way through till the Wildcats exploded with their firepower in the first of the seventh inning with a two run rally, which Coggon could not overcome.
From the Black and Red... September 30, 1943...
The Big Event
Everyday as we enter the study hall we find a notice on the board such as this: “Junior Play -- Act I, on stage at 12:30 today.” Yes, progress is being made in the production of “People Are Funny.”
We want you all to remember to check October 21 on your calendars, The Big Day. Yes, the date of our play. After all, it would be a shame for you to miss one of the outstanding events of the school year.
Besides a fine cast, which has previously been announced, we have a superior support staff. In any theatrical production we know that the most responsible and difficult position is that of stage manager. That very essential task has been delegated to Charles Sparrgrove who will certainly carry out his duties well. Wilbur Swanson will help Charles as assistant stage manager.
Without properties for the play we cannot have an effective job of acting. Joan Betzer will be the head of the properties crew........
Due to the gasoline shortage it is difficult to have outside rehearsals so we are taking every free minute we can before school begins for practice. In spite of our limited time of preparation we will assure you an excellent play.
From the October 7, 1943 Black and Red...
The following three items...
A Glimpse of Our Janitor
Our janitor is Ed Finson. He has been with us two years. He says he likes his work and also the contact he has with pupils and teachers. His duties are keeping fire, sweeping floors and taking care of the school ground. In his extra time he repairs things that are broken. His wife comes up in the evening and helps him by dusting.
Mr. Finson doesn’t think much of Frank Sinatra and he also said that Jazz music drives him crazy. He is interested in western movies and says that Gene Autry and Tim Holt are his favorite stars.
His opinion of girls wearing slacks to school isn’t so good. He says “pants are for boys”. His favorite sport is basketball and he thinks our baseball team would be good with plenty of practice.
He keeps up on the school notes by reading the “Black and Red”.
Another assembly program was given Friday afternoon by Miss Bakke’s music students.
Those taking part were Wealtha Conner, Maedean Bishop, Bernice Crowley, Charmaine Lary, Merna Truesdell, Donna Sinkey and Ruth June Myers.

The program closed with the salute to the Flag and the singing of the “Star Spangled Banner.”
Sports News(baseball)
The Wildcats have been waiting for a return game but with no success.
The following boys took part in this seasons games: Darrell Mills, Dean Caryl, George Andrews, Milton Holub, Dick Ford, Floyd Young, Cecil Anderson, John Zimmerman, Darrell Sinkey and Bob Phillips.
Richard McMurrin, we are sorry to report could take part in only two games because of pneumonia. The boys have missed him a great deal...
From the Central City News-letter... Front page...October 14, 1943...
We are Sorry
The publishers of the News-letter and New Era are sorry that it was necessary to omit certain news items this week.
Two reasons for the omissions are the shortage of print paper and the labor situation, and these two items cannot be overcome no matter how much we wish it otherwise. We feel confident that all of our readers will understand and withhold any criticism which may at first hand seem justified.
Much of the omitted news was set in type, but not used because of the paper shortage.
NOTE: The paper shortage was mentioned several times during the war years.
The School news section, “The Black and Red” was one of the items discontinued in the following weeks and there was only the occasional news bit regarding the school happenings thereafter.
Also every issue of the News-letter carried the announcements of War dead, injured or missing in action of local area fighting men (young enough to be called boys, experienced enough to be called men.)
From the Central City Newsletter(front page story)... October 28, 1943...
“People Are Funny” will be presented tonight.
“People are Funny” a farce will be presented by the Junior Class of the Central City high school in the auditorium this (Thursday) evening.
Mary Louise Peck as Jessie Budd or “Mom”; DuWayne Beebe as Pop, an insurance salesman who is writing a novel; Floyd Young as Kenny, the younger brother; Helene, the sophisticated daughter, and Betty, a flippant outspoken girl comprise the Budds, an average American family.
The play centers around the attempts of Mrs. Budd to make a favorable impression upon the very much misunderstood young millionaire, Arthur Fairchild played by Dean Caryl.
The supporting cast is made up of Mr. Whitman, Arthur’s companion played by John Zimmerman. Winnie Wehle, Kenny’s girl friend, Arthur’s sister played by Norma Jean Hart; Florence’s two friends, Gladys Bliss and Olga Oguespanski, by Ruth Neiderhauser and Ruth Davis. Prudence Paine, an aunt from the country, played by Dorothy Sanders, and her darling daughter, Pamela played by Evelyn King.
From the Black and Red... October 28, 1943...
The following two items:
Boys Sports
The Baseball season was officially over this week. The sectional tournaments were held but the Wildcats conserved on gas and tires by staying home.
Mr. Smid is still forging forward in the physical fitness program by having 90 minutes of calisthenics weekly. The state department carries this program with the combined cooperation of the teachers and pupils of various schools.
Mr. Smid is the acting chairman in Linn county.
The Ideal High School Boy
1 Eyelashes - Daniel Sherbon 2 Eyes - George Andrews 3 Eyebrows - Wilbur Swanson 4 Hair - Red McMurrin 5 Ears - Dale Beebe 6 Nose - Robert Falcon 7 Everett Broessel 8 Complexion - Gorwood Henderson 9 Freckles - Darrell Sinkey 10 Teeth - Darrell Mills 11 Hands - Clell Lewis 12 Cookie Duster - John Zimmerman 13 Legs - Cecil Anderson 14 Feet - Mr. Smid, size 15 15 Walk - Cutie Bliss
From the Central City News--letter... December 9, 1943...
Honor Roll - Second six Weeks
Seniors: George Andrews, 90; Blanch Bliss, 92; Virginia Sherbon, 91.2; Merna Truesdell, 97.2; Vaneta Wall, 97.2.
Juniors: (class of ‘45) DuWayne Beebe, 91.2; Joan Betzer, 93.6; Norma Jean Hart, 91.2; Mildred Johnson, 91.2; Mary Louise Peck, 96.8.
Sophomores: Richard Ford, 91.2; Leslie Furuseth, 95.6; Shirley Boyse, 93.2; Merna Crookshank, 96.5; Barbara Cooper, 96.5; Charmaine Lary, 98.
Freshmen: Lorren Dennison, 90; James Davidson, 90; George Nielson, 90; Ruth Jamison, 92.5; Maxine Meakins, 98; Grace Monk, 95.7; Edna Paul, 96.5; Angela Svoboda, 98.
From the Central City News-letter... December 23, 1943...
Two Central City Teachers Resign; Effective Dec. 22
Miss Bernadine Warner, junior high teacher and girl’s basketball coach, and Miss Loleta Bakke, music and typing instructor in the Central city schools, have resigned their positions, same becoming effective Dec. 22.
Mrs. George Rollins, who has been a part time teacher in the school, will be on a full time basis when school reopens Jan. 3. The position of junior high teacher and typing instructor have not definitely filled at this date.
From the Central city News-letter... February 3, 1944...
News Notes of Fighting Men
Among the 20 or so items listed each week was the following regarding a former member of our class of ‘45.
Harlan Smith, son of Mr. and Mrs. Ralph Smith, Central City, who was recently inducted into the Navy, has the following address: Harlan Smith, A.S.,Co. 103-44, Camp Ward, Farragut, Idaho.
From the Central City News-letter... February 24, 1944...
High School Operetta Tuesday Evening, Feb 29
The Central City high school music classes will present “Words and Music” at the school house Tuesday evening, Feb. 29. It has been several years since an operetta has been given by the school and none of the students have taken part in one previously.
The plot revolves around Shirley Johnson and Robert Falcon (students of Barton college and secretaries to the Deans), Joyce Brewer and John Smola (Deans of Barton college;) Dale Beebe (President Fussbottom), and Bob Phillips (colored janitor).
A little close harmony is added by the girls and boys’ quartets composed of Wealtha Conner, Mary Lou Wilson, Blanch Bliss and Merna Truesdell and Everett Broessels, Darrell Sinkey, John Zimmerman and Darrell Mills. Color and interest is added by the boys and girls of the chorus, who presents songs and dances. Mrs. Elmer Baxter will accompany the singers. The production is under the direction of Mrs. George Rollins.
The operetta will furnish an evening of entertainment for everyone.
From the Central City News-letter... March 23, 1944...
George W. Hansen Resigns as School Superintendent
Geo. W. Hansen submitted his resignation as superintendent of the Central City schools, effective at the close of the present school year, to the board of education at its meeting Monday evening
Mr. Hansen is completing an enviable record of service and at the present time is closing his 18th year as superintendent of the local schools. During this time he has seen the school at its peak in the number of students attending and then has seen a graduate lessening of the number as has been the case in most other schools. During this time he has witnessed many pupils complete the course of study and go out to take their places in world events. In some cases children of former students have been members of the student body, while in other instances former pupils have returned to teach under his supervision. Mr. Hansen has not fully decided at this time as to his future livelihood.

1944 - 1945 School Year... The Senior Class... fourteen started the year, fourteen graduated.
Robert Albin
DuWayne Max Beebe
Joan Betzer
Ruth Davis
Anna Faye (Fuller) Ricklefs
Mildred Johnson
Norma Jean Hart
LeRoy LaBarge
Ruth Neiderhouser
Mary Louise (Peck) Shakespeare
Wilbur Swanson
Laverne Wroblewski
Floyd Young
John Duane Zimmerman
School Faculty:
Superintendent: John J. Hurwitz, English and Mathematics
Principal: David Evans, History, Music and Girls Athletics Coach
Waldron F. Brown, Science, Physics, Industrial Arts, Physical Education
Mrs. Opal Evans, Head of Commercial Dept.
Mrs. Lucille Nietert, English, Biology and Home Economics
From the Central City News-letter... January 25, 1945...
Hot Lunch Program
“What do we eat?” That is the question. It’s also a thing that adds spice to attending Central City schools. We do eat every noon--in the school house--an excellent meal prepared by the cooks. What is more we have quite a variety. And, of course, each meal is carefully planned--and here’s how it happens to be so:
The Central City schools are co-operating with the War Food Administration in serving class A lunches with milk each day. Certain requirements must be made so that federal aid may be secured. The pupil, or student, pays 15 cents for the meal. The program is being directed as follows:
Dietitian-- Mrs. Lucille Nietert of the C.C.H.S. home making department.
Head Cook-- Mrs. Mary Bishop.
assistant-- Mrs. Eunice Wilcox.
Certain students also aid in the work.
High School Honor Roll
Seniors: Joan Betzer, Mildred Johnson, Mary Louise Peck.
Juniors: Barbara Cooper, Maxine Egger, Charmaine Lary, Leslie Furuseth.
Sophomores: Ruth Jamison, Maxine Meakins, Edna Paul, Angela Svoboda, Alfred Anthes.
Freshmen: Dorothy Bowen, Dora Mae Brunen, Helen Carpenter, Beverly Hubbard, Joan Hutchins, Jean Johnson, Charlotte Knapp, Nette McCann, Raymond Anderson, Dean Bauman, Darwin Meakins, Francis Shakespeare.
From the Central City News-letter... April 5, 1945...
High School News
Mrs. Walk and Mrs. Warbasse, grade school teachers, appeared before the high school assembly last week in behalf of the Red Cross drive. A box was passed to each class for donations. If students desired to contribute, but had no change with them, they were given a loan of a few cents until the next day.
The final contribution: Seniors, $3.78; juniors, $2.95; Sophomores, $3.78; Freshmen, $5.61. Total, $16.83.
To Receive Basketball Awards
The following students will receive basketball letters and numerals this year:
Girls-- Donna Sinkey, Shirley Boise, Merna Crookshank, Anna Faye (Fuller) Ricklefs, Katheryn Miles, Virginia Sadler, Barbara Cooper, Dorothy Bowen, Maxine Meakins, Beverly Henderson, Lillian Marek, Marion Albin, Shirley Walters, Helen carpenter, Beverly Hubbard; Charmaine Lary, Manager.
Boys-- Dick Ford, Eddie Johnson, John Zimmerman, LaVern Wroblewski, John Smola, Cecil Anderson, Clell Lewis, Robert Phillips, Robert Albin, Don Falcon, Darwin Meakins, Gary Hutchins; Bill Holub, Manager
The above named students will be guests of members of the Chamber of Commerce at the Basketball banquet to be held April 6, at the high school gymnasium.
From the Central City News-letter... April 12, 1945...
Three items:
Banquet Rates High With Both Students, Sponsors
A highly successful banquet was held at the school auditorium Friday evening, when members of the boys’ and girls’ teams and their sponsors, the Central City businessmen, were entertained, first with a sumptuous dinner, prepared and served under the direction of Mrs. Lucille Nietert, the home economics instructor of the local school. Decorations were carried out in the school colors of red and black. About 160 persons were served.
Supt. John J. Hurwitz acted as toastmaster and introduced County Superintendent of Schools Walter Shuppe, who spoke briefly on “Athletics, a Factor in Education.” Clair Ellis, superintendent of schools at New Providence and a director of both the boys’ and girls’ high school athletic associations, spoke of some of the aims of the organizations. David Evans, high school athletic director, presented certificates to the members of the girls’ team, and Coach Waldron Brown presented certificates to the members of the boys’ team. Tait Cummins, sports editor of the Cedar Rapids Gazette, introduced the speaker of the evening, Coach “Pops” Harrison of the University of Iowa. Coach Harrison brought out some of the reasons his team were champions of the Big Ten in a manner which registered with all of his hearers. Pops also introduced two of his “boys,” Herb Wilkinson and Dave Danner.
Following the program those in attendance were given the opportunity of shaking hands with the honored guests and receiving their autographs, when it was found that all three of the University of Iowa men were genial and just three more of the boys...
Letters From our Men & Women in the Service
Dear Sir:
I have not received the News-letter since I left the States last August. I never got around to write you before this. I would be very grateful if you would send the News-letter to me. I received the clipping from the News-letter of my half-brother, Cpl. Alva B. Husted, who is now in Belgium. I am the son of Mr & Mrs Charles Sparrgrove of Prairieburg.
I can’t say where I am, only somewhere in the south Pacific. We were in the invasion of the Philippines and really gave them the one-two punch.
There are quite a few boys from Iowa here, but none that live very close. We do get together and talk about the good old States.
Again, I would be very grateful if you would send the News-letter to me.
Yours Truly, Charles E. Sparrgrove, S2/C.
NOTE: Charles was in our class of ‘45 as a Junior before dropping out to join the Navy.
Gregg Award Received
Fourteen O.A.T. awards were received by typing students on the March Test. In addition to receiving a Certificate, honorable mention is given by the Gregg Writer, a commercial magazine, to the students submitting the five best test each month. Ruth Neiderhauser’s paper was chosen as being a prize winner and she received a bronze O.A.T. pen from the company. This is an honor as there are several thousand papers submitted each month.
From the Central City News-letter... April 19, 1945...
News Notes of fighting Men
Mr. and Mrs. C.E. Robison, Central City, have received word that their son , Roger Robison, who was recently inducted into the Navy, is stationed at Great Lakes.
NOTE: Roger was a member of our class of ‘45 thru the Junior year before dropping out to join the Navy.
From the Central City News-letter... 26 April, 1945...
News Notes of Fighting Men
Seaman Second Class John and James Christensen have been spending short leaves in the home of their parents, Mr. & Mrs. John Christenson of Coggon. John returned to his duties at Davisville, R.I., Monday afternoon, while James will return to Great Lakes, Illinois, Friday morning to await further assignment.
NOTE: John & Jim were members of our Freshman class before moving to Coggon.
From the Central City News-letter... May 3, 1945...
Interesting News Notes of the Central City Schools
The Freshman class is sponsoring a Wimpy Banquet as a return party honoring the Sophomore class. Full details remain secret, but life-sized drawings of Popeye and his comic associates seem to be a part of the scheme. faculty and students are to dress representing the different comic characters.
In Shorthand, Merna Crookshank, Maxine Egger and Joan Betzer passed the 80-word speed test.
The Senior Class Play
The senior class play, “The Old Home Town” was given Tuesday night at the high school gymnasium. Everyone present enjoyed the performance very much.
“The Old Home Town”
Presented by the “Senior Class” of C.C.H.S.
May 1, 1945, 8:00 P.M.
You will live, or have lived, the parts played by these characters. The small midwestern community is typical of the American way of life. Problems are met and solved in the story of this American family. The entire action takes place in the Irving family’s living room.
Cast of Characters
Henry Irving . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .A small town Druggist of the Wilbur Swanson spluttery type.
Irene . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .His ambitious wife, a mother of two grown children.
Mary (Peck) Shakespeare She has the vitality of three.
Andy . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Their high school age son with big ideas. Dean LeClere***
Alice . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .The Irving’s daughter who has an ambition to Ruth Neiderhauser become a great writer.
Tom . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Henry’s bachelor brother -- An overgrown boy John Zimmerman with an obsession for ...
June Miller . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .A new neighbor -- gets what she is after. Mildred Johnson
Clark Kent . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Alice’s former sweetheart and cashier in the bank. DuWayne Beebe
Carol Brewster . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .The banker’s daughter -- pretty but spoiled. Anna (Fuller) Ricklefs
*** Dean LeClere, was borrowed from the Junior class for this part as we were short of people.
From a Page supplied by Joan Betzer Simmen...
Senior Year Events, Class of 1945.
A class meeting was held on September 12 and Mr. Waldron Brown was elected our class sponsor for the year. The same day class officers were elected and Robert Albin was elected President, Mildred Johnson, Secretary, and Dean Caryl, Treasurer. After Dean left us Floyd Young filled his place as Treasurer.
On September 29 the Seniors went to Cedar Rapids and had their class pictures taken at Lasswell’s Studio.
Early in the fall the Senior Class sponsored a skating party at the Central City Roller Skating Rink.
On December 8 we Seniors ordered our announcement cards and our class motto “Hitch Your Wagon to a Star” was chosen. Class colors are blue and gold. The class flower is yellow chrysanthemum.
On May 1, the Senior Class gave the play “The Old Home Town” under the direction of Mr. Brown, our class sponsor.
On May 10 the Seniors were guests of the Juniors at a Junior-Senior Banquet held in the school gym.
The Baccalaureate Sermon was held in the school auditorium on Sunday evening May 13. Father Breitbach was the speaker for the evening.
On Wednesday afternoon at One o’clock, (today) the Seniors had their class day program.
May the 18 Commencement Exercises will be held in the High School Auditorium at 8 o’clock in the evening. The Commencement Speaker will be radio station “WHO’s news announcer, Jack Shelley.”
We are sorry to say that one of our classmates LaVern Wroblewski will not be with us. LaVern has already departed to serve in the United States Navy. DuWayne Beebe has enlisted and will follow LaVern in a few weeks. We, their classmates, want to wish each lots of luck and a speedy return.
In the twelve years of school 2 out of the 14 started and continued their schooling through all 12 years in the Central City Public School. Those 2 were Anna Faye Fuller Ricklefs and John Zimmerman.
From the Central City News-letter... May 10, 1945...
Commencement Activities Swing into Final Week
News from the home front (the Central City Schools) is com9ng almost as rapidly as that from abroad. And like the news from Europe, it’s all good. So here are the latest releases;
May 10-- Junior-Senior Banquet. The juniors will have as their guests the members of the senior class and the faculty. An excellent menu has been prepared by Mrs. Lucille Nietert of the Home Economics Department and a rather novel program has been arranged by Principal David Evans, the sponsor of the class. Mr. Evans and his class have converted the auditorium into a beautiful Hawaiian scene.
May 13-- Baccalaureate exercises. The Rev. Fr. John Breitbach, pastor of St. Stephen’s church, will give the address. The invocation and benediction will be given by the Rev. Lewis Savage. Music will be by the various high school groups under the direction of David Evans. The exercises will be held in the high school auditorium at 8 p.m.
May 14 and 15-- The seniors will take that long awaited vacation to visit spots of interest to them.
May 15 and 16-- Semester Test. Enough said.
May 16-- Senior Day. At 1 p.m. the seniors will conduct a program for the high school.
Alumni Dance.
May 18-- Senior High Commencement. Jack Shelley, news editor of radio station WHO, Des Moines, will deliver the address. According to John J. Hurwitz, the Linn County fair board has loaned the school 150 extra chairs so plenty of seating space will be available. A public address system will be furnished by A.D. Mills & Co. Mr. T.W. Lewis, president of the Board of Education, will present diplomas to a class of 14, seven girls and seven boys as follows:
Joan Betzer Ruth Davis Anna Faye (Fuller) Ricklefs Norma Jean Hart Mildred Johnson Ruth Neiderhauser Mary Louise (Peck) Shakespeare Robert Albin DuWayne Beebe LeRoy LaBarge Wilbur Swanson LaVern Wroblewski Floyd Young John Zimmerman
From a copy of the Commencement Program supplied by Joan Betzer Simmen.
The Fifty-Fourth
of the Central City High School at the High School Auditorium
Friday, May 18, 1945 8:00 P. M.
Processional - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - Mrs. Opal Evans
Invocation - - - - - - - - - - The Reverend Lewis Savage
Music - - - - - - - - - - - - -- - - - C.C.H.S. Mixed Chorus
Introduction of Speaker - - - - - Robert Albin, President
C.C.H.S. Class of 1945
Address - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -Jack Shelley News Editor, W.H.O.
Presentation of Class - - - - - - - - - - - - - John J. Hurwitz Superintendent
Awarding of Diplomas - - - - - - - - - - - - - - T. W. Lewis President, Board of Education
Special Awards - - - - - - -- - - - - - - - - - John J. Hurwitz Superintendent
Music - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -C.C.H.S. Mixed Chorus
Benediction - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - Father John Breitbach
Robert Duane Albin, President
Mildred I. Johnson, Secretary
Floyd Young, Treasurer
Special Awards
Mary Louese Peck-Shakespeare, Valedictorian
Joan Loraine Betzer, Salutatorian
Highest percentage of attendance for four years
Joan Betzer
John Zimmerman
DuWayne Max Beebe
Ruth Davis
Norma Jean Hart
LaRoy C. LaBarge
Ruth E. Niederhauser
Anna Faye Fuller-Ricklefs
Wilbur G. Swanson
LaVern Wroblewski (U.S. Navy)

Since 1945... to 2002... Seven boys and seven girls graduated in 1945. In 2002 there is four boys and four girls still living. Two have always lived in Central City. One each are living in Cedar Rapids and Vinton. And one each are living in Arizona, Florida and Texas.
Of the seven boys who graduated in the class of ‘45; four served their country in the Navy and three served in the Army.
Of the fourteen graduates, three had no children, the remaining eleven had a total of twenty six children.
A brief rundown on each of the fourteen...
Robert Duane Albin...
Robert (Bob) attended grade school and his first two years of high school in the West Branch, Iowa area. He came to Central City and to the class of ‘45 as a Junior.
It is remembered that he came to our school wearing his letter jacket from West Branch. He lettered in Basketball at least one year while with us.
After high school graduation Bob enlisted in the Navy.
Following his military service he worked for the City of Cedar Rapids for a number of years as a tree trimmer and for a time drove the “Hot Rod” race car built by Val Shonka, the Central City blacksmith.
Bob married Patricia _______ from Cedar Rapids.
Bob later became a sheet metal worker in Cedar Rapids. He worked at this until he was forced to retire in 1973 because of a heart problem.
After retirement Bob and Pat lived in the Branson, Missouri area for a number of years. Later they moved to southwest Arkansas where we are told Bob spent time digging for diamonds in the little known diamond area around Murfreesboro.
Robert Duane Albin passed away at Gurdon, Arkansas in October 1990. Burial was at Blodgett Cemetery west of Central City.
Two sons: Roxton Albin, living in Colorado. Duane Albin, living in Missouri. Two daughters: Jean (Albin) Burns, living in Florida. Sally (Albin) Feado, living in the Cedar Rapids area. Numerous grand children:
Most of the above information was supplied by Bobs brother, Keith who lives in Central City.
DuWayne Max Beebe...
Lived on a farm three miles northeast of town and attended Red School thru the eighth grade.
Came into the Class of '45 as a freshman... He, like several of his classmates, always seemed capable of finding activities that was often frowned on by the school faculty.
Sworn into the U.S. Navy late in the Senior year and went to active service in June 1945.
After boot camp, doing which time he spent four months in the Navy hospital with Rheumatic Fever, he was assigned duty in Washington D.C. Discharged after serving fifteen months in the Navy he went to work for Hearn-Stevenson Motor Co(Ford) in Cedar Rapids.
DuWayne was married to Barbara Joyce Cooper(class of 1946) in 1948.
A couple of summers he drove the race car that was built up by Val Shonka, the local blacksmith in Central City.
In the fall of 1947 DuWayne entered the College of Mechanical Engineering at the University of Iowa where he took engineering classes for two years. During this time he continued working as a Mechanic at Hearn-Stevenson.
Employed by Ford Motor Company as a Technical Service Engineer in July 1959 working out of their Davenport District Office... Transferred to Ford Export Division, Wixom Michigan in July 1974 specializing in Heavy Trucks.
While at Ford Export DuWayne made an average of five overseas trips a year, visiting a total of fifty six foreign countries before retiring on May 1, 1987.
Four sons: Larry Allen Beebe, teaching at Wilton, IA. Gene Duane Beebe, living at Fort Madison, IA. Allen Lee Beebe, living at Eldridge, IA. Gail Dee Beebe, living at Clive, a suburb of Des Moines.
Nine grandchildren: One great grandchild: DuWayne and Barbara were divorced in 1981. Barbara returned to Iowa and later married Richard Wells from Geneseo, Illinois.. They currently are living in East Moline, Illinois.
DuWayne was remarried in 1983 to Vicki Lynn Smith White from Milford, Michigan.
After retirement they traveled six months of the year in their Fifth wheel trailer including two summers to Alaska.
DuWayne and Vicki have both been working their Family Roots for the past ten years.
In 1997 they built a home in Mesa, Arizona where they continue to live in 2002. However, they still do summer traveling.
Joan Lorine Betzer...

Joan was a part of our Class of ‘45 thru all four years of high school. She attended her grade school years in the Melrose district west of Central City.
Always a good student and almost always being on the honor roll, led to her being our Class Salutatorian when graduation day came in 1945.
Joan attended Cedar Falls Teachers College for the one year requirement to become a teacher. She then taught school for one year at the Paris school north west of Central City.
In March 1947, Joan was to marry Robert (Bob) Simmen. Bob, had graduated from the Alburnett school about 1939 and then served in the U.S. Army. After their marriage they made their home in Central City.
During her years of marriage Joan worked at several jobs; Homemaker and Mother, Secretary at the News-letter office, Teachers Aid at the Central City Schools and as a Teller at the City State Bank.
Bob worked as Custodian at the Central City school for about 16 years and then went to work in the Maintenance department at St Lukes Hospital in Cedar Rapids. Bob passed away in March 1988. Cancer was the cause of his death.
Two sons: Ronald Simmen, living in Omaha, Nebraska. Randal Simmen, living at Waubeek. Two granddaughters:
In 2002, Joan continues to live in Central City and is thankful to be healthy and to have a good family and friends.
Elsie Ruth Davis...
Ruth, never known as Elsie, attended several years of grade school at Central City and was a part of the Class of ‘45 for all four years of our hi
In 1951, Ruth was united in marriage with Floyd Vaverka from Cedar Rapids. After their marriage they made their home in Cedar Rapids where Floyd was employed by Railway Express.
In 1975 Ruth suffered a stroke that has left her with some disability.
After Floyd’s death due to Cancer in 1990, Ruth continued to live in Cedar Rapids until December 1995 when she moved to Kansas.
Thru the years Ruth worked at various jobs but due to the demands of homemaking and children did not have an Outside” occupation.
Three children: Dennis Vaverka, living in Olathe, Kansas. Mark Vaverka, living in Raymore, Missouri. Linda Vaverka, living in Cedar Rapids. No grandchildren.
In our phone conversation Ruth was very interested in what all the old class was doing.
In 2002 Ruth lives in her apartment down stairs from son, Dennis and his wife, in Olathe, Kansas.
Anna Faye Fuller...
Anna has lived in Central City from her early years. In 1941 she moved upstairs to High School as a Freshman with the class of ‘45. She is one of the two classmates who attended all of their school years at Central City.
Anna was active in the Girls Basketball program and played Drums in the School Band
In November of her Senior year, Anna was united in marriage with Delbert Ricklefs. Delbert from the Class of ‘44 had quit school to join the Navy and was home on leave.
After graduation Anna went to work at Collins Radio in Cedar Rapids. She later worked at the bank in Central City for a time before returning to Collins where she worked until her retirement.
One son: David Lee Ricklefs living in the Iowa City area. Two Grand daughters: Two Great granddaughters:
Norma Jean Hart...
Lived southeast of Central City, off the Ridge Road towards Anamosa.
Norma attended her grade school years and first year of high school in the Anamosa school district.
She came to our class at the start of our Sophomore year.
After high school graduation Norma worked at Collins Radio in Cedar Rapids for a couple of years before switching to the telephone company in Cedar Rapids where she worked for AT&T thirteen years.
Norma Jean was married to Jack Oliphant in 1948. Jack, was from Newhall, Iowa, (class of ‘44) and had served in the Navy.
Norma and Jack lived in the country near Center Point for seventeen years before moving into town for another ten years.
About 1992 they moved to Vinton, Iowa where they currently live.
Jack worked as a Barber for a number of years as well as specializing in Stone Engraving.
One daughter: Deborah (Oliphant) Koopman One grandson: One granddaughter: One Great grandson: One Great granddaughter:
In 2002 Norma Jean suffers from Emphysema and uses a wheelchair part of the time.
Mildred Irene Johnson...
Mildred (Millie) attended grade school at Central City and came into the Class of ‘45 as a Freshman. She was an active member of the girls basketball program.
Graduating in May 1945, Millie was to marry later that same year when she wed J. Richard Carley who most people knew only as “Red” Carley.
Millie’s life time occupation was that of a homemaker for her family. However, she was very active in various Volunteer activities.
Husband, Red, worked for the Linn Co-op company. He drove tank trucks for many years before switching over to their Service Station and Tire outlet in Marion.
Mildred and Red lived in Central City for twenty eight years before moving to Marion.
Red retired from Linn Co-op after thirty four years of service.
Two children: Steven Richard Carley Mary Lynn Carley(died in 1969) two Grandchildren: one Great grandchild:
Mildred Irene Johnson Carley, after a lengthy illness passed away May 26, 1998.
Red continues to live in Marion.
LeRoy LaBarge...
Lived east of Central City, just north of the Prairieburg corner. He attended country schools in the same area.
After graduation, LeRoy went into the Army in October 1945. After completing his basic training was sent to the Anchorage Alaska area. He extended his enlistment time and was later returned to the “lower 48” where he worked as a Mail Clerk at Fort Belvoir, Virginia until his discharge in May 1947.
Worked construction for a number of years before going to work as a Mail Carrier in Cedar Rapids. After thirty years of service with the Post Office, LeRoy retired on January 1, 1988.
LeRoy and Mary Holly, a graduate of Alburnett High School, were united in marriage in 1956.
Three children, twin girls and a boy: Jennie Leigh LaBarge living in Cedar Rapids. Jeanie Lea (LaBarge) Nolte living in the Joplin, Missouri area. Andre Marc LaBarge living in Cedar Rapids. Six Grandchildren: Three girls. Three boys.
LeRoy has been a Coin Collector for years, and he still goes up to Prairieburg a couple of times a month to play cards with old friends.
To meet LeRoy today you would wonder why we called him “Radar” LaBarge. He is much taller and heavier than when he was in school. Maybe Mary found a growth medicine to put into his food.
In 2002 LeRoy and Mary continue to live in Cedar Rapids.
Ruth Evelyn Neiderhauser...
Ruth and her father lived on a farm East of Central City where she attended country school thru most of the grade school years. Her Mother had died of child birth complications shortly after Ruth was born. They later moved into Central City and Ruth attended all four years with our class of ’45.
Detailed information has been hard to find on her life after high school. The following info was obtained from Doris Mote of Central City.
Ruth married William (Bill) Marsh and for many years they ran a Cafe in Shellsburg, Iowa. They later moved to the St. Louis, Missouri area(??).
After the death of her husband, Ruth returned to Central City for a short visit but continued to live in Missouri.
About 1998 or 1999, word was received that Ruth had also passed away. Burial was in Missouri.
She had no children.
Mary Louise Peck
Mary Louise started her Freshman year with us in the fall of 1941. She had attended grade schools in the Olin, Iowa area before her father settled on a farm southeast of Central City, a bit west and north of Waubeek.
Mary, a studious student thru all four years a high school was named Valedictorian of the Class of ‘45.
In early February of her Senior year, Mary Louise was united in marriage with Kent Shakespeare. They had been going together for several years and he was about to be inducted into the Army.
After Kent’s return from the military, he and Mary Louise lived in Cedar Rapids for a time where Mary was employed at Quaker Oats.
Suffering a broken leg from a fall at work, they packed up and moved to Portland, Oregon. There Mary enrolled in a three year Nursing Program.
After completion of this program, they moved south to the Los Angeles area where Mary worked as a Nurse and Kent went to work at Lockheed Aircraft to learn the Tool Making trade.
After fourteen years of marriage, they divorced. The main cause being that Mary wanted to move on to other areas and Kent was staying put to continue his selected occupation.
After the divorce, Mary Louise moved to Hawaii where she worked and took college courses; then moved on again to Alaska where she continued to do the same.
Coming back south again, she completed her BA Degree at San Diego State University.
From there she moved to the upper midland area of California where she worked at various Nursing and related jobs. One of her last jobs before her retirement due to poor health, was with an Alcohol and Drug Rehabilitation program in the Sacramento area.
Mary Louise and Kent (after the death of his second wife) decided to again come together and Mary moved back to the Los Angeles area in 1996.
Mary Louise Peck passed away at Burbank, California on May 19, 2001.
She had no children.
Wilbur Gene Swanson...
Born and raised in the Ong, Nebraska area where he attended his grade school years. About 1941 they moved from Nebraska to a farm north and west of Rogers Crossing.
Wilbur started his Freshman year with the Class of ‘45.
He is to be remembered for the Red Chevy pickup that he drove. Blond haired and shy, he was ready for any suggested devilment.
He was inducted into the Army after his graduation from high school but was given a medical discharge shortly thereafter.
Returning from the service, Wilbur farmed with his parents and Uncle Harry.
About 1955 his parents moved to a farm in the Mexico, Missouri area and Wilbur and Harry followed in 1960.
After the passing of his parents and uncle, Wilbur continued to farm in the Mexico area.
Finally at the age of fifty two, Wilbur was to marry for the first time. In 1980 he was united in marriage with Beverly Reeves, a young widow from the Mexico area.
In the early 1980’s Wilbur was diagnosed with Cancer. Treatment worked for a time but the sickness became much worse in 1986.
In his later years Wilbur spent a lot of time with his hobby of Shooting and reloading Rifle and Shotgun shells.
Wilbur Gene Swanson passed away in a Mexico, Missouri hospital on July 17, 1986.
Beverly, now remarried, continues to live in the Mexico area.
He had no children.
LaVerne Wroblewski...
LaVern, (Vern in later years) while in his Junior year, transferred into our class in early 1944 from the Lisbon school district.
LaVern earned his letter in Basketball while a member of our class.
In the second semester of his Senior year, Vern enlisted in the Navy and was called to active duty shortly thereafter. (The military draft laws at that time were such that one could join the Navy up until their eighteenth birthday. After the eighteenth birthday you were automatically drafted to the Army.)
Though missing the last weeks of his senior year of school, Vern was awarded his Diploma with the rest of the class; however he was not present to accept it.
After Boot Camp Vern was sent to the South Pacific area until his discharge.
Vern was married in 1949.
Two daughters: Both are married and have families of their own.
Vern was in business for a number of years in Marion and headed up two Corporations before moving to Florida.
After retiring to the Bradenton, Florida area Vern has kept himself busy in local projects.
He also is active in the Country Club and works part time as a Starter at the golf course.
It sounds like he has a busy retirement.
Floyd Young...
Floyds full name is Olin Floyd Young, Jr. though I am not sure if any of us in school knew it at the time.
He was a member of the Baseball team and lettered at least one year. I am not sure but he may have been active in other sports also.
Floyd developed Rheumatic Heart during his Junior year in high school. After his graduation he tried to join the military service but was rejected by all of the services.
He later worked at Allen Motor company and at Hearn-Stevenson in the parts department.
In September 1950 he was united in marriage with Ramona Winfield from Alburnett.
Shortly after his marriage Floyd was drafted and accepted into the Army for Korean war service. After serving three and a half years his Rheumatic heart began to act up again and he was given a discharge.
Not long after his discharge Floyd and his brother went into farming together for a short time, then he and Ramona went on their own. They farmed west of Central City and later had a farm south of Central City.
Five Children: Barbara (Young) Brandau living at Osage, Iowa. James Young living near Alburnett. Becky (Young) Walters living in the Alburnett area. Janice (Young) Stavnes living at Storm Lake, Iowa. Vicki (Young) Bolder living in the St. Louis, Missouri area. Ten Grand children: Five boys: Five girls:
While operating farm machinery in September 1983, Floyd felt the beginnings of a heart attack and was able to shut down his equipment before he died.
Burial was at Cedar Memorial Cemetery in Cedar Rapids.
John Duane Zimmerman...
John was one of the two members of our class who attended the Central City school all of his school years.
In August 1945 John was inducted into the Navy Reserve program and following Boot Camp was sent to the Navy Discharge center at New Orleans, Louisiana. When the camp was closed down in August 1946, John was discharged and returned home.
About 1948 John went to work for Collins Radio in Cedar Rapids.
In July 1950 John was united in marriage with Maxine Farley from Cedar Rapids.
In 1953 John took a transfer with Collins and moved to the Dallas, Texas area. After four years they returned to Cedar Rapids where John continued with Collins until retiring in 1991 after forty three years of service.
Maxine worked for a number of years both at the telephone company and at Collins. She also was a Mary Kay representative for a time.
Three children: Donald Zimmerman at San Antonio, TX David Zimmerman living in northern Virginia. Douglas Zimmerman also in San Antonio. Four Grandchildren: Two boys: Two girls:
After his retirement, John and Maxine moved south to the San Antonio area where they continue to live in 2002.
John now works at the store owned by two of the boys for a few hours everyday. He also was a Boy Scout Leader for eighteen years.
They both remain active in volunteer work in San Antonio.
Authors note...
This project was undertaken as an after thought of wondering what some of the old gang was up to, other than years.
The Central City School has a “All Classes Reunion” each summer at which I am told they spotlight the class that is having their fiftieth year reunion.
Our class would have been so honored in 1995 but I was not able to attend.
About 1977 Anna organized a get together of the local members of our class and five of us with our spouses met at the Amana’s and spent the afternoon reminiscing.
Those attending were:
Anna Faye Fuller Ricklefs Norma Jean Hart Oliphant Mildred Irene Johnson Carley LeRoy LaBarge DuWayne Beebe
I currently have the address and phone numbers of all remaining students or some one of their family if they had children.
My current address is: 7832 E. Nopal Ave, Mesa, AZ 85208 Phone: (480)986 0005 (summer 480 510 7122), e-mail:
Re: Ruth Davis...
From the Cedar Rapids Gazette Elsie Ruth Vaverka, of Olathe, Kansas, formerly of Cedar Rapids, passed away Thursday, June 20, 2002, in Villa St. Francis, Olathe.
Services: 1:00 PM Thursday, Church of the Nazarene, Cedar Rapids.
Burial: Cedar Memorial Cemetery. Friends may call from 6:00 to 8:00 PM Monday at Memorial Chapel Funeral Home, Olathe, and from 4:00 to 8:00 PM Thursday at Turner West Funeral Home, Cedar Rapids.
The family suggests memorial contributions to Mid America Nazarene University in Olathe.
Re: Kent Shakespeare...
George Kent Shakespeare, husband of Mary Louise Peck passed away December 26, 2002 at Glendale, California.
He had been in failing health for some time. He had had surgery for a Brain hematoma, due to a fall and never fully recovered.