Saturday, October 1, 2016

Homecoming Royalty - Sort of ...

Went to the Luther Prep homecoming last night - and got a peek at the pep rally where the homecoming court was introduced. I was moved. (Okay, not really.) But it has moved me to reveal this family archive gem from the ghost of Prep homecomings past. It's grainy and it's black and white. But it is a classic and, of course, there is drama and human interest oozing out all over the place - known only to the participants and others who were there on that fall Friday night at dear old Northwestern Prep in 1969.

Are you ready for it ....

click to enlarge

You'll want to first notice the elaborate state of  the art lighting. And that's all there was, trust me. You can't see the sound system, but you would have heard it, or maybe not. The stage really wasn't all that helpful, and I'm not quite sure what that box is in the lower right. I'm sure it was important though.

Other than looking terrified, embarrassed, or somewhat bored, let me tell you about this cast of court (and courting) couples.

Let start on the left and get it out of the way right from the get go. Yep, that's me, looking rather "Joe Prep-ish" I don't mind saying. I'm  escorting Joanne Jaeger. Six years later she would be in our wedding and there started courting my buddy groomsman, Don Sutton. We were in their wedding not long after. That's Don in the back with the shirt and tie. He was the class "Studley Dudley" and was the pep  rally speaker.

To  my left is Doreen Marohl, the class "looker"- a beautiful gal then and still today. (We're Facebook Friends.) It's a wonder I learned any Latin my first year  at Prep. Doreen sat in front of me. She smelled so nice, wore these beautiful sweaters, and her lovely blonde hair was always hanging in front on me on my desk. No wonder I couldn't conjugate amo. The college guys on campus noticed her too, and she  dated a few of  them. Prep guys never  had a chance. That's Mike Hintz with Doreen, looking mildly interested in the whole affair. I like Mike and we are friends today. He was a more than decent athlete, good student, a great guy who became a fine pastor, world missionary, and now the synod's evangelism leader. But how Mike got to be with Doreen will forever be a mystery to me.

Of course, in the middle you see the lovely maiden from Montello, Carol Mateske, with my good friend (who  is now in heaven), Mark Lindner. "The Gief" as we called him looks like a gief and about as stiff and uncomfortable as any human being could be. Not only that, when he was picking out pants that night he must have thought there was a flash flood warning. I love that guy! But we really needed to switch places (no offense to Joanne intended), but Carol and I both would have voted for the switch. But we didn't have a vote on that (not sure who did the pairing), and  I was too cool (okay, I was chicken) to say anything. It took me until the snow fell to admit that I had my eyes on her and do anything about it. We did enjoy the other major campus social event together, Winter Carnival.  I can remember that coat so well. I wonder what happened to it. She looked good  in it, but I suppose it would be out of style today - what with the fluffy trim and all.

Next is another family connection. That's Marsha, now Stueber, Hackbarth, who is the aunt of Jeff's wife, Andrea. (Paula Schmeling, or li'l Hacky, as I called her, was Marsha's younger sister, who may  have  been in the crowd that night.) Marsha is with Charlie Degner, the Ixonia farm boy who became my district president in Minnesota. Charlie and Marsha were actually an item in those days, and  we thought they would get married someday. Oh well, guess not. Charlie was also one  of  the class brains, a practical, "let me fix that" kinda guy, and he looks more interested in what Don was doing behind him, trying to get the microphone going. 

Finally, the last couple is my good buddy, John Gawrisch  and Jackie Kletsch. They were not a couple, but Jackie wished they were. If "Goo" was interested, he didn't let on, and would have probably been too bashful to do anything about it anyway.

I'm not sure who the other guy is. A college guy maybe. Looks like John Johnson. I can't tell, and I don't remember.

Well, Marsha became homecoming queen - I'm sure  hands down. We lost the football game to Racine Lutheran, a game in which I sprained my ankle badly, didn't come out and got burned on a touchdown pass to a guy who wasn't that good. That was disappointing. But I don' think we won any  games that  year.

But this was a cool night none  the less!

But darn! I wish I had  kept  that letter sweater!!!

Homecoming Royalty indeed! 1969 style!

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  1. This makes me so happy in so many ways. I didn't notice the "flood warnings pants until after you mentioned it and then I laughed out loud. I wish that moms jacket and your letter sweater were still around too!!

  2. Interesting!!! So many connections - I suppose it is a WELS gathering.