Flood in Cozad

I just heard from Terry Brand and Vikki Dickinson about the horrible flood in Cozad and Lex this Memorial Day.  Here is the article from the online TriCity Tribune.  Terry sent pictures that his son took of the devastation.  Terry’s son is a supervisor at Tyson Foods in Lexington.

Torrential rainfall creates misery (From Tri City Tribune)
Major water problems

     Rain, hail and strong winds created major havoc in Dawson County Thursday though Saturday.

     Cozad and Lexington, in report comparisons, got the ‘blunt end’ of the storm with rainfall amounts ranging upwards to 11″ and winds that soared up to 70 miles per hours.

     Streets were flooded, basement and bi-level homes were severely damaged, power supplies were interupted, some accidents were reported, a few fires resulted and many residents fled their homes seeking shelter in motels and with relatives and friends.

     Water in Cozad homes with basements ranged upwards form inches to several feet. That forced many residents to move furniture and other items outdoors and in other storage places. Sump pumps and portable pumps were activated early to prevent additional damage.

     Cozad residents were also alerted to conserve the use of water because of heavy demands at the sewer treatment plant. Residents were asked to restrict the water for washing clothes and other purposes.

     Streets were flooded throughout Cozad, particularly in the southeast, southwest, south, 12th and 18th street areas. Blockades were placed at many locations because traffic was pushing water back into homes.

     An emergency center was put into operation by Mayor Greg Tetley at the municipal offices to assist residents with problems.

     A meteorologist with the National Weather Service Office in Hastings said that Cozad recorded 7.25 inches of rain over the period.

     Near Cozad, the Platte River exceeded its flood stage and parts of Hiways 30 and 281 were covered with standing water. All non-hard surfaced county roads in the Cozad region were closed Friday and Saturday.

     At Lexington an emergency shelter was opened late Friday at the Senior  Center to accommodate many residents who were forced to  evacuate their homes because of standing water. Buildings, particularly on the west edge of the city, were the hardest hit.

     Flooding was excessive in the Plum Creek Market/Burger King area in south Lexington, while streets in many other areas were overflowing too.

     A water restriction request was also made in Lexington.

     Some power outages were reported in the Lexington area too.

     Nearby communities of Eustis and Farnam faced severe consequences too. A water restriction was requested at Eustis.

     In Farnam high water threatened several commercial locations, particularly the veterinary clinic owned by Dr. Kent and Marilyn Pieper. Crews of sandbaggers responded to keep flood waters form damaging the facility.

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Our prayers go out to all that suffered from this catastrophe.  

Wanted: Pictures

We are still collecting pictures for the class reunion DVD.  Please send them ASAP.  We would like to have 5-6 pictures, representing the past 40 years of your life.  Even if you are unable to attend the reunion, please SEND PICTURES!  It would be great to have 100% participation! 

THANK YOU to Doug Ferguson for his recent contribution to the class fund.  It’s not too late to send your check to Mike Bell.  Make the check out to “Class of ’69.”  Thank you to Mike for managing that account for us.

We had a nice Memorial Day weekend.  Dave and Carlota came from Chicago.  It was great to see them again.  We had a rather lowkey weekend, which was fine with Dave and Carlota.  They said it was nice just to relax.   We spent Monday doing various things.  We went to the botanical gardens (over by the zoo) and saw the trains. After that we had ice cream at Zesto’s, one of the mainstays during the College World Series.  It’s a little 1950’s ice cream place.  Later, we played miniature golf and went to the batting cages.  Then we ate dinner at Sgt. Peffer’s in Millard.  It was a fun day and we didn’t get rained on.

Boys at the train  Ice cream at Zestos on Memorial Day

The train exhibit near the botanical gardens                  Ice cream at Zesto’s

Mike & Carlota minigolfing Batting

Mike and Carlota golfing                                       Batting cages (Mike in helmet, Joe & Dave outside)


State Track Meet

The “Bristol Bed and Breakfast” was open this week to our special guests from the Custer County Chief.  Deb McCaslin and two staffers spent Thursday and Friday nights as they covered the State track meet at Burke.

We live fairly close to Burke, so I invited Deb to stay with us instead of driving across town to the Holiday Inn where they stayed last year.  Deb brought along her daughter-in-law, Jessica, and a young sports writer, Aron.  Since we have extra beds, we had plenty of room for all three.  We had a great time.  Of course, I didn’t see them much during the day as they were busy covering the track meet, but we visited in the evening.  Friday night, we went out to dinner at La Mesa restaurant.  I asked Bill Fann and his wife if they wanted to come up from Lincoln.  I also told Lana about it and she drove in from Blair.  We had a great time.

              At La

I received a funny e-mail from a friend.  I thought you might enjoy it.  It’s called “Two Ways to Look at It.”

My wife and I were sitting at a table at my high school reunion, and I  kept staring at a drunken woman swigging her drink, as she sat alone at  a nearby table.
 My wife asks, ‘Do you know her?’
 ‘Yes,’ I sighed. ‘She’s my old girlfriend. I understand she started  drinking right after we split up those many years ago, and I hear she hasn’t been sober since.’
 ‘Holy cow!’ says my wife. ‘Who would think a person could go on  celebrating that long?’
 So you see, there really are two ways to look at everything.

Be sure to send pictures for the class DVD!  Thank you to those who have done so–Trudie, Cortland, Shelley, Jerry V, and the Govier’s.  We need pictures from everyone else now!  Please send them as soon as you can.  Remember, we would like pictures “through the years” if possible (but we’ll take whatever we can get.)  I’m not putting all the pictures on the blog because we want some to be a surprise.

Reunion Booklet

Thank you to Jerry Littlejohn for his recent donation to the class fund.  It’s not too late for the rest who haven’t donated yet, to send a check to “Class of ’69” to Mike Bell.


A couple weeks ago, I asked if people would be willing to receive the questionnaires for the reunion booklet via e-mail. Several of you responded you would.  I sent the questionnaires to those who responded.


Since then, I received email from Shelley in Arizona, telling me she thinks we should ask different questions.  The ones I sent were much too boring.   As she filled out her questionnaire, some of her co-workers offered suggestions.  Here is Shelley’s email to me:


One of my co-workers (who is 31 years old) said if her class had a questionnaire it would probably have questions like:  How big is your diamond ring?  What is your husband’s annual salary? What kind of car do you drive?  How many cosmetic/plastic surgeries have you had?  Another gal said if a couple of her single friends who have no aspirations to get married or have children wrote questions to be answered they would be something like:  What is your favorite martini?  What’s the most unusual place you have had sex?


When Dave looked at the questionnaire, he said too bad they don’t ask questions like “does your husband treat you well, or how happy/satisfied are you with your life?”  Dave said it would be interesting to include about 100 questions, and out of those questions, people could pick and choose the ones they wanted to respond to.  It would make for an interesting book, huh?


One of the guys in our office said his high school questionnaire would probably ask:  Have you ever done time in prison?  For what?  


Shelley and I have been emailing back and forth other ideas we have for questions.  Here are some of mine!


1.) How many surgeries have you had and for what?

2.) How many appliances do you put on in the morning in order to function?

3.) How many prescription medications are you on?

4.) How many knee surgeries have you had?

5.) How many beers can you drink in comparison to 30 years ago?

6.) Can you breath without the assistance of an oxygen tank or breathing apparatus?

7.) How many homes have you refinanced?

8.) How many presidents have you voted for?

9,) How many wars have you opposed in your lifetime?

10.) How much do you spend on pain relievers (legal and illegal)?


To which Shelley added:

1.  Who was the last group you saw in concert, and when? 

2.  What was the last book you read?

3.  Ever done a keg stand? (just kidding)

4.  Do your copayments for prescription meds, doctor visits and surgeries total more than your monthly mortgage, at this point?

5.       Who did you vote for in the last election?


On the more serious side, she added –


I would really like to know to what extent our classmates followed through with some of the interests they had in high school, such as those who played an instrument in band or took private music lessons.  Do they still play that instrument or do something in the realm of music?  Or people (like yourself) who were on the yearbook and newspaper–did they continue writing?


As we write back and forth, I am struck with how boring the real questionnaire really is.  So, I invite you all to add whatever information you want to the questionnaire.  You may pick and choose the questions to answer and add some of your own! 


Keep sending pictures!


I met with Lana last night on my way to writers’ group.  She treated me to dinner at Fernando’s in Blair.  (Thank you very much, Lana!  It was totally unexpected.)  Anyway, Lana has many original Senior pictures of us, so she is loaning them to me to scan for the video and possibly nametags, if that committee would like to use them.  I have been scanning the pictures from Frank’s yearbook (which I borrowed because mine was destroyed when our basement flooded a couple years ago when the water main broke near our house.)  The scanned pictures from the yearbook are grainy, so I’m sure the ones Lana loaned me will be much clearer.  I will use the yearbook ones that aren’t in Lana’s collection.


This past weekend was prom, so I MUST share prom pictures.  It was a rainy day, so we met at one of the girls’ house to take pictures (Erica in purple).  The kids left to eat at Anthony’s steakhouse and nine of us parents went out to eat at the Summer Kitchen.  It’s fun to go out with the parents and get to know them better.  We had a great time.  Mike and Anna ended up with 11 other kids in their group.  (It started out as 2-3 couples, then grew!)  The kids were calling them “Mike and Anna’s Group” as in “Are you going with Mike and Anna’s Group?” 


Mike & Anna's Group  Mike's beautiful date

Wanted: Pictures and Information

Hi, everyone!  Most of you received an e-mail from me recently regarding the questionnaire for the class booklet.  I will e-mail or snail mail the questionnaires, whichever you prefer.  I have already sent some out via e-mail.  I would like to get those back sometime towards the end of June.  

We also want pictures!  Please send at least 5-6 pictures of you, past and current.  They can be pictures from high school, college, weddings, vacations, family portraits, whatever.  Pictures from past reunions would be fun to include in the DVD as well.  For the booklet, we will likely use the class picture and possibly a current picture, depending on space and appearance.  We don’t want to overdo the booklet, especially since we will have the DVD available. 

If you have any clever cartoons or humorous antecdotes re: high school, please send them as well.  We plan to interject some humor in the booklet such as the “forward” Dorsett sent me awhile back.  (See blog entry JULY 18, 2007.) The humor used will not be at the expense of anyone in the class.  Self-effacement is welcome, though.

If you want to mail your photos, I can scan them and return them to you via US mail.  If you have the ability to scan, though, I would prefer receiving pictures by e-mail.  Please resize them so they aren’t humongous and take forever to download.

I want to apologize for forgetting to put last month’s birthdays in an entry.  April and May Birthdays were/are:      


7 Lana Pleak

17 anniversary –Rosentreader 1971

18 Tom Cordell



3 Shelley Shonkwiler

29 anniversary—Shonkwiler 1971

29 Sonia Richeson

 Let me know if I am missing YOUR birthday!  

I am recovering from my accident last week.  My bruises are now the ugly green-purple dotted appearance.  The ones on my chest from the “airbag” are the worst.  (I put “airbag” in quotations marks because it is a misnomer.  What came out of those bags when they deployed was not “air,” but foul-smelling, hard-to-breathe, smoky, nasty fumes.)  I have a good sized bruise on my left elbow from who-knows-what as well as a sore shoulder.  All are intact, though, and moveable.  I feel very fortunate that my injuries were not any worse.  I am thankful for the foul-smelling, smoky “airbags.”  It is much better than my head going through the windshield! 

We purchased a “new” vehicle.  I am now driving a 2006 Saturn Vue.  I teased my guys that it is a rather “manly” car with black leather and wood grain interior.  I told them I needed to buy some flowery seatcovers to make it more feminine.  They gave me a resounding, “No way!”  At least, I got it in red instead of steel gray or silver.  I guess I am no longer a soccer mom with my minivan. 

Keep those e-mails coming!  Send pictures!!