By Shirley Biehl Rushville Republican
---- — Saturday, July 27, 2013 started with early morning showers and later cooled off with sunny skies and cool breezes. A better day could not have been ordered for the approximately one hundred former Raleigh School students who found their way to the Raleigh Community Club to see friends they met years ago while attending the first consolidated school in Washington Township. Joe Archer member of the 1938 graduating class and Marjorie Wesley member of the graduating class of 1939 were recognized as the two special attendees for the day.
Memorabilia of all types including the senior class photos from the years of 1935 to 1955, photos from two yearbooks – 1915 and 1917, photos of the entire student body of the school and the high school students from the 1920’s, a good number of class photos, a photo of the 1950-1951 Rush County Champion Basketball team, a photo of the last basketball team in 1964-65, and an athletic sweater from the 1940’s were available for all to see. Also displayed were messages from Jim Callane whose mother taught at Raleigh for many years and Karen Wagner Farlow who spent her first year teaching English to the students in the sixth through eighth grades.
The planning committee had the former students enter the front door only in an effort to collect contact information causing a bit of a back log that didn’t seem to bother anyone since they were able to still visit…and visiting appeared to be the name of the activity of the day! Friends were found laughing, smiling, sharing memories, grabbing a bite to eat and drink and having a good time. Door prizes were handed out to many including center pieces designed by Pam Stevens Pyle with silk flowers and a special photo of Sir Walter Raleigh.
The class that appears to have had the most members in attendance was the 8th grade class of 1964. Class members in attendance were Leslie Archer Cottrell, Deb Clawson Briar, Julia Coop Wilson, Le’Ann Ellis Gibbons, Janet Gordon Farrow, Mary Jo Gordon Lovett, Karen Nixon Noel, Mike McComas, Pam Stevens Pyle and Thad Richardson.
The family with the most in attendance was the Case family with five including Norma King Case Love, Judy Case Jones, Judy Case Monroe, Helen Case England, and Russell Case.
Raleigh had not seen so many people in town since the Community Club celebrated their 60th anniversary in 2007. Their parking lots overflowed to the streets and some were heard saying their cars were parked closer to the school.
Raleigh School may be no longer but students came from the states of Kansas and Washington and numerous areas of Indiana to share good times and many memories Saturday and many look forward to seeing additional friends at the next Raleigh School Reunion.