SYRACUSE — Syracuse Alumni Association gathered at the Syracuse Community Center, Saturday, June 15 for the annual banquet. The Syracuse High School classes of 1959, and 1949 were honored. Approximately 100 attended for the social hour, dinner and time for meeting and greeting those not seen in a while. Those there represented the classes of 1938 through 1968, the last year of the high school’s existence. A highlight of the evening was the singing of the school song. The words were printed on the program to assist memories.
Mike Smith, class of 1968, was the master of ceremonies, Judy Ridings Wager, 1968, gave the invocation. Committee members were Smith, Wagner, Lu Ann Mock, Cathy Smith Lemberg, Cinda Singrey Culver, Paul Stoelting, Steve Conrad and Kent Thomas, all of 1968, and Ken Butt, class of 1965.
The class of 1959 had the best turn out with members coming from California and the upper peninsula of Michigan as well as Indiana. Gary Kline reminisced about his class noting they were the last SHS class to win the county tourney as they had classmates who stood six foot eight inches and six foot six inches tall. “It was hard to shoot over them,” he admitted. “The reunion is always bittersweet because each time the class gets together they realize how many are now deceased.”
He noted, “We were always a close class and still are. We like each other. Eighteen of us went from first grade through senior year together.” The class has had a reunion every five years since graduation except for the first one, which was after seven years.
Gerald “Jake” Bitner was the only member of the class of 1949 in attendance and he spoke briefly. He remembered the sports, trips, plays and events the class shared. He concluded, “The smallness of the community made it special. Go Yellow Jackets!”
The cash bar and dinner, which included appetizers and desert, were catered by The Sleepy Owl Supper Club.