Time rolls by: Reflections on the HHS class of 1968 reunion
The Hillsboro High School class of 1968 reunion photo from the Hillsboro Orpheum on June 17.
By Jim Thompson
HHS Class of 1968
I woke up the morning of June 18 with a surprising thought. The Hillsboro High School class of 1968, of which I am a member, had its 55th reunion the previous evening, June 17 at the Orpheum in uptown Hillsboro.
The thought was this: How are you supposed to feel when your 55th reunion is now in the rearview mirror? Old? Over the hill? Washed up?
I know we are not the first class to experience this milestone, but it is more sobering when it happens to you.
There was a very nice turnout. The next thought was to reflect on past reunions. In some ways it was more somber; in other ways, happier. Compared to our 10th reunion, way back in 1978, we have lost our youthful giddiness, but our joy at seeing each other was full and seemed in some ways more genuine than in times gone by.
Speaking for myself, I learned of some illnesses and infirmities that were new to me. Yet, I don’t think of that in a depressing way at all. The people were alive and there to talk about them! Modern medicine is keeping us alive and in better shape at this age than many classes of times gone by.
Our featured speaker admonished us that the IRS thinks that we have, on the average, about 13-15 years of active life and that we should find some invigorating activities to occupy our time. Later, some class members reported that they are doing just that.
The highlight of the evening was the trivia game cooked up by Jim Rooney and other members of the class. The format was that of pictures put on the big screen with the object of guessing what, where or when they were. Jim Rooney’s connections to the Highland County Historical Society greatly helped in preparing this endeavor.
There seemed to be a recurring theme in many of the old buildings shown – they caught fire and burned, even including an early fire station!
Jim was also able to show us work he had done researching the Underground Railroad in Ohio which was very interesting.
There was a time of remembrance of and reflection on those several dozen members no longer with us.
The food, hors d’oeuvres and desserts were a delight. So was the period music and the lighting, in HHS red. The reunion committee (using maiden names where applicable: Joyce Haley, Janice Bayless, Jim Rooney, Connie Yarger, Marilyn Wharton, Joyce Walker, Linda Ballentine and Tom Ward) did a great job.
Due to recent publicity, there was discussion of and reflection on the Lincoln School Marching Mothers. It was noted by several of us that the African American members of our class have not attended our reunions. That is a loss, and we hope to make amends by the next time we get together.
If you are reading this and are a member of our class, please be assured that all class members have been and always will be welcomed. We miss you.
We finished the evening at 9 p.m. That is “late” when you are our age.
Special note: I was given the thankless job of selecting the photo accompanying this article. There were three from which to choose. All had issues. I decided to choose the one where all faces could be seen.
Jim Thompson, formerly of Marshall, is a graduate of Hillsboro High School and the University of Cincinnati. He resides in Duluth, Ga. and is a columnist for The Highland County Press. He may be reached at email@example.com.