"The good old days....when we weren't good and we weren't old" Barbara Schwarz Moss 2010

We seem to all be suffering a common problem these days, WHERE DID OUR LIVES GO? Our brains seem to still be 18, but our bodies are talking a different language. Sarah Orne Jewett puts it much more eloquently than do I:

“Neither of my companions was troubled by her burden of years. I hoped in my heart that I might be like them as I lived on into age, and then smiled to think that I too was no longer very young. So we always keep the same hearts, though our outer framework fails and shows the touch of time.”



Interactive news, reviews, gossip, musings, activities, photos, mysteries, histories, stories, truths, lies & video tapes from & for graduates of the Kirkwood (MO) High School fabulous class of 1965. Email us anything you would like to share to leslieatkhs65dotcom. See photos at - comment here or on the website to make yourself heard! FIND US ~ ~ ~ FACEBOOK KHS65 ~ ~ KHS65 MAKE IT A HABIT!

Monday, March 13, 2023

Kirkwood School District Foundation Grant program benefits from generosity of KHS65 Classmate to pay it forward!

 This was posted via email by the Kirkwood School District Foundation  today; please read down and note in the 3rd paragraph under the photo - the Mr. and Mrs. Rodger Riney are better known to us as Rodger and Paula Fauks Riney.  They are often found paying their goodness forward in the Kirkwood realm.  Thank you Paula and Rodger!  You are among the group of KHS65ers who continue to make us all look good!  We're proud to know you!

On Thursday, March 9th, the Kirkwood School District Foundation (KSDF) awarded a $5,000 grant to the Kirkwood High School (KHS) College Kickstart Program. KSDF representatives surprised grant applicant, Melinda Hall (KHS Social Worker), and her colleagues with the award during National School Social Work Week.


“We all know how expensive it is to send a child to college for the first time with heavy upfront expenses for various items such as bedding, electronics, clothing, personal care items, etc. The College Kickstart Program will help relieve this upfront burden and help our kids feel confident and comfortable as they begin their first semester at college," said Hall.


This donation was made possible by a generous gift to KSDF from Mr. and Mrs. Rodger O. Riney, made in honor of retiring Principal Dr. Michael Havener and his years of dedication to Kirkwood students. Dr. Havener expressed his desire that a portion of these funds in his honor be directed to the KHS College Kickstart Program.

Tuesday, January 3, 2023

Alan Yount on David Sanborn - and WoodStock

 I've been cleaning up my email files again - I had a nagging feeling I had something from Alan "The count" Yount I wanted to post and didn' here it is.  Thanks Alan for always keeping us up to date on music and poetry!


 He played on the third day, afternoon.  He played with the “Paul Butterfield Blues Band.” Paul played a great blues harmonica.  Sanborn stayed with him for several years.  I think Sanborn stayed because this helped him get into Time Warner, Reprise, Electra records for the next 30 years.

 On the internet, I saw a great picture of Sanborn under a tarp along with the tenor sax player.

 I think I did mention before, you can get the 3 CD album, “Anything You Want”  of 30 years of Sanborn’s pick of his albums."


Saturday, December 31, 2022


 I am forever trying to catch up with myself, cleaning off my ultra messy desk or some such.  Story of my life!  This time I find a folded up front page of the St. Louis Post Dispatch for 11/14/22, an issue with looks back to things Veterans of course.  The first page headline that day was "This veteran's story is about more than war."  There is a 5" x 7" color photo under the headline which shows Udell's portrait photo in uniform, the flag from his funeral and no fewer than 9 medals/awards.  The sub-title is "Udell Cambers hit .325 in the minors, then died in Vietnam".  The first line of text is "His name was destined to be on a baseball card, but it ended up on a tombstone first."  Udell had siblings in other classes, Ted and Larry in our class for example.  You may remember them as singers.  Udell signed with the Atlanta Braves soon after graduation.  In 1967 he hit .325 for their Class A affiliate.  In 100 games he hit 13 homers, stole 28 bases.  OPS was .952.  "He was drafted that fall and dead by summer."  In Feb. 1968 he was assigned to the 1st Infantry Div., 1st Battalion, 7th Field Artillery Regiment arriving in Viet Nam during the Tet  Offensive. On June 21, 1968 the Atlanta Braves played in St. Louis against the Cardinals; that is the day Udell died.

 Folks from Meacham Park would flock to Kirkwood to watch him play.  He hit homers at Turner School, fans wondered how he could play so well, only 5' 8" and 150 pounds but so nimble, and humble.  There were 7 children, and while not wealthy, sister Josephine is quoted as saying "With the small amount of money, we never saw a hungry day.  We never really knew we were poor."  Udell signed for $500 per month and had dreams of buying his parents a house someday.  Udell left a legacy for KHS though, his great niece played softball for KHS, she wore #19, Udell's number too.  Sadie drew a U in the dirt each time she stepped up to bat.  She later played for St. Louis U and finished her career this past season, one of the best ever to play for the Billikens.  In 2020 she set the school record for batting average, .438. In 2022 she made third-team All Region.  Her father is Mike Wise, the son of Udell's late sister Mardell.  I love the close of the article, which I have paraphrased for brevity, by Benjamin Hochman of the PD staff, "[Sadie's grandmother, Udell's mom] would love to watch Sadie play...she would say that Sadie reminded her of Udell because they could both dominate during the game but were very humble and unassuming as soon as the game was over."  Another wonderful, notable Kirkwoodian, gone too soon.  And yet another veteran gone in that awful war.  War is such a terrible thing.  Perhaps if older men, politicians, military gurus, etc. were the ones being drafted, rather than the youth of the world, war would become more unpopular!  Udell is buried at Jefferson Barracks; next time you're there you can easily look up his location and pay your respects. 



    Well friends, another year has come and gone. For many gone is a good word for 2022.  For Jack and me it was a year of chaos with no kitchen save fridge, microwave and toaster oven for half of it - it's finally finished and beautiful!  Let's all look forward to a happy, healthy, sane New Year. As one of the youngest members of our Kirkwood High School Class of 1965, I finally turned 75 earlier this month. UGH is all I have to say. Yes, I know I'm very fortunate to be this old and in at least as good shape as I am, while not as good as I'd like to be. Maybe '23... did you get that rhyme? I don't do poetry and now you see why, but in looking through some papers the other day I realized I hadn't posted any recent poems from Class Poet Laureate Alan Yount lately. I went on a search and don't see any new ones, but ran into this one below that Alan posted when he turned 74 last summer. It resonates with me now, just change a digit of the year! Alan treated us to so much wonderful music in years past - remember his band playing at our Kirkwood Kettles? In the cafeteria on Friday nights and at our dances...such fond memories.
    Waxing nostalgic on this yet another New Year's Eve, now we way too often are remembering our classmates who are passing all too frequently. You'll see on my Facebook page and below that Christmas Eve brought the death of classmate Donna Heckelman Halsband, still living in Kirkwood, a member of the local Kiwanis group and a retiree of Meramec Community College. May she rest in peace - and on a happier note perhaps some of our classmates are having a nice party up there in heaven, celebrating the great lives we have had in our shared past! May your New Year be everything wonderful!
    "Happy Birthday, Finally
    ……………..“For My Seventy-Fourth”
    ……………..“June 6, 2021.”
    it still seems amazing to me
    I try to play the trumpet everyday
    and can still make high “c.”
    awhile back I had my old horn
    professionally cleaned & worked on.
    it’s so good to play on it looking forward.
    it seems now there is no more old arthritis in the slides
    and the sticking values are all fixed.
    I now feel I still have some more notes to play!
    and feel, also for sure now I have
    just a few more poems to play & sing out high, like high “c.”
    [Alan's poem resonates with me right here, even after the not-so-welcome milestone birthday I do feel this way, thankfully - even if I don't carry a high "c"!!!  I hope you all do too... lvr]
    Postscript: A very sincere birthday wish. My hope, is a wish for a lot
    of people, who survived the virus era. Those that made it both mentally and physically. And now the wish is, they all feel a lot better, finally!
    by Alan Yount"

Sunday, December 4, 2022

How the Frisco Bell came to be the Prize for the winner of the Turkey Day Game

After I posted on Facebook about the Pioneers' huge win over the Statesmen last week I offered to tell the story of how the bell came to be the prize.  Several readers wanted to know so here it is courtesy of Ron Krieger and published in the Autumn 2022 Kirkwood Historical Review, the newsletter of the OTHER KHS, the Kirkwood Historical Society.  I will paraphrase and direct quotes will be so marked, it's a long article!

First Editor Ron gave an introduction to set the stage.  Some of he following information was taken by Ron from the Webster-Kirkwood Times, Nov 21, 2003.  The source at that time was Peter Bredehoeft, a fellow KHS53 classmate of Ron's.  The occasion to write the story was the Class of '53's 50th reunion.

Early in the 1953 school year, Murl Moore, principal, received a letter from the Frisco Railroad asking if the school would like to have a bronze bell from a steam locomotive due to be decommissioned because steam locomotives were being replaced by diesel.  [See my commentary below, this is not the complete story, ed.] You may recall that Bev Sarff's father (she our classmate of course) was the assistant principal and he asked the Student Council if they thought it should come to the school...according to this article the Council's mood was that anything free is worthwhile, but had no idea what they'd do with it.  Peter had a trailer used to haul equipment for his business so he was designated to go the rail yard and retrieve the Bell.  It was on a skid next to the train, but too heavy for anything but a forklift to move.  "The Frisco employees volunteered to make a rolling stand for the bell in their shop."  When Peter returned in a couple of weeks, the railroad folks "could not have been more accommodating or nicer." The bell arrived at the school and was displayed outside Mr. Moore's office, which proved problematic.  "Some daring students thought it was great fun to wait until the officials were all in the office, sneak up to the bell and give it a few healthy rings and then run like the devil.  The bell very quickly became a liability, not an asset to the school administration."  No kidding...

Soon it was relegated to "...the bowels of the school near the boilers and out of harm's way."

Peter said he wasn't sure where the idea came from to give the bell to the winner of THE game, but obviously it seemed like a good one and it stuck.  Peter continues, "As an aside, I am sure that the school administration was glad to see it go.  Mr. Moore contacted the folks at Webster and the deal was struck."  " 1953 a tradition was born, thanks to the generosity of the Frisco Railroad and the Class of 1953.  (More information is written in Shawn Greene's book "Turkey Day Game Centennial 1907-2007" page 107.)ed.  Thus ends the Kirkwood Historical Review article.

If any of you don't know, Shawn Greene is the son of our classmate Phil Greene and his wife Caroline, also a pal of mine.  So there we have it, and Kirkwood now has the bell for the 9th year in a row. Last I saw, it reposed in the library, but that's been awhile back.  We know it's somewhere!  If you didn't know, this year's score was 56 - 7.  I do not remember ever knowing this story in the past, but maybe it was well-known and we've just forgotten, sure has been a fast 57 years since we were hanging around the hallowed halls of dear old KHS!

After typing all of that, it dawned on me to go look at page 107 in Shawn's book!  I own the late Jim Olson's copy autographed by Alvin Miller.  I had a copy Phil & Caroline gave me, but I believe I passed it on to a KHS65 alum who was green with envy, no pun intended.  Later, Jim gave me his copy, now a treasured memory of our friendship.

Back to THE BELL.  ..   Page 118 of Shawn's book is headed Bring Back The Bell!  And it begins thusly:  "In the fall of 1951, [Mr. Moore] was contacted by an old neighbour and friend, Robert Stone, who was the VP of the Frisco RR Co.  The Railroad was in the process of replacing its steam locomotives with diesel and Stone asked Moore if KHS would be interested in having one of the bells from a replaced locomotive...the Student Council accepted the gift."  Note this says fall of 1951.  The article goes on to tell about Peter Bredehoeft, KHS53 and his being chosen to get the bell because of his flatbed truck and this article goes along like the above.  "It became an obligatory prank of the students to ring the bell and quickly flee before Moore could catch them.  This may have necessitated a decision for a use for the bell."  A bit different (I read that as tongue-in-cheek) but similar to above.  According to this article by Shawn Greene the bell was introduced at the 1951 Turkey Day Game, won by Kirkwood 33-0, but was awarded for the first time to Kirkwood in 1952 after the game ended in a 0-0 tie.  Kirkwood was awarded the bell by default because Webster had the Little Brown Jug from the previous year's loss.  Thus the first team to actually win The Bell was Webster in 1953, winning 33-13.  At the time of the publication of Shawn's book, 2007, the Bell had changed possession 25 times and only five graduation classes never had it during their tenure: Kirkwood 1966, 1972 and 1973, Webster alumni 1984 and 1990.

I have spent too much time on this today so will stop here.  There is more "lore" about The Bell and the Turkey Day Game.  I believe there is a copy of Shawn's book at the Kirkwood Library.  There should be, I am pretty sure I ended up with another copy which I donated to them not too many years ago!  What a fun bit of looking at the pix of the teams over the years, I see SO many names I know...our Football Maids, our players, the coaches and others.  What a place that Kirkwood is!

Tuesday, October 4, 2022


 In looking for something tonight on my computer I ran across some saved emails to me in past years from our dear departed classmate & cross country star and KHS Alumni Sports Hall of Fame member Jim Olson.  This one was particularly nice tonight as the news is so full of badness, this gave me a lift.  It was sent to me and Jim aka Speed Herb on 12/14/2016 - forwarded to Jim from someone else, not his text:

Frank  Sinatra considered Kate Smith the best singer of her time, and said that when he and a million other guys first heard her sing "God Bless  America" on the radio, they all pretended to have dust in their eyes as they wiped away a  tear or two.  
Here are the facts.... The link at the bottom will take you to a video showing the very first
public singing of "GOD BLESS AMERICA". But before you watch it, you should also know the story behind the first public showing of the  song.  
The time was 1940. America was still in a terrible economic depression. Hitler was taking
over Europe and Americans were afraid we'd have to go to war. It was a  time of hardship and worry for most Americans.  
This  was the era just before TV, when radio shows were HUGE, and American families sat
around their radios in the evenings, listening to their favorite entertainers, and no entertainer of that era was bigger than  Kate Smith.  
Kate was also large; plus size, as we now say, and the popular phrase still used  today is in
deference to her, "It ain't over till the fat lady sings".  
Kate Smith might not have made it big in the age of TV, but with her voice coming over the
radio, she was the biggest star of her time.  Kate was also patriotic. It hurt her to see Americans so depressed and  afraid of what the next day would bring. She had hope for America, and faith in her fellow Americans. She wanted to do something to cheer them up, so she went to the famous American song-writer, Irving Berlin (who also wrote "White Christmas") and asked him to write a song that would make Americans  feel good again about their country. When she described what she was looking for, he said he had just the song for her. He went to his files and found a song that he had written, but never published, 22 years before - way back in  1917. He gave it to her and she worked on it with her studio orchestra. She and Irving Berlin were not sure how the song would be received by the public, but both agreed they would not take any profits from God Bless America.  Any  profits would go to the Boy Scouts of America. Over the years, the Boy Scouts have received millions of dollars in royalties from this  song.  
This  video starts out with Kate Smith coming into the radio studio with the orchestra and an
audience. She introduces the new song for the very first  time, and starts singing. After the first couple verses, with her voice in the  background still singing, scenes are shown from the 1940 movie, "You're In The  Army Now." At the 4:20 mark of the video you see a young actor in the movie, sitting in an office, reading a paper; it's Ronald Reagan.  
To this day, God Bless America stirs our patriotic feelings and pride in our country.  Back in
1940, when Kate Smith went looking for a song to raise the spirits of  her fellow Americans,
I doubt whether she realized just how successful the results would be for her fellow Americans during those years of hardship and worry..... And for many generations of Americans to follow.  
Now that you know the story of the song, I hope you'll enjoy it.  
Many  people don't know there's a lead in to the song since it usually starts with

"God Bless America ....." So here's the entire song as originally sung.....  ENJOY! TnQDW-NMaRs?rel=0


Tuesday, September 27, 2022


 Well, I cut and pasted this from my Facebook page, it didn't copy very attractively but at least it is accurate.  It's going to be casual and fun, you can get there a bit earlier to eat dinner before the partying starts.  I'm not sure at this moment whether or not there will be music, but actually we don't need it, in our advancing years it seems most would like to TALK!  Come and see and be seen, it's always a great group!!!

KHS65.…..It’s party time!
Join your classmates for a fun evening walking down Memory Lane!
Sat., October 22, 2022, 6pm-10pm
612 Kitchen and Cocktails (AKA: The Loop Lounge)
612 W. Woodbine, Kirkwood - just west of Geyer on south side of street
Classmates coming from K.C., Dallas, Michigan, Minnesota and who knows where else! RSVPs appreciated but not required.

Wednesday, August 17, 2022

Larry M. Barnett, a life really well lived - his obituary

 Please know Larry's obituary is located here:

It is also easily visible on my personal FaceBook page.  SO sad that the good guys are going too soon...

Saturday, August 13, 2022


 I can't even think of a new title for my posts when another of our classmates passes away.  Every death is sad, of interest to many if not all of us, and news we don't want to hear.  Jim and Linda Day alerted me this morning, as has Paul Silman, that our wonderful Robinson and KHS friend Larry Barnett died last night. He and his family have been in San Antonio for years but he was in touch with several KHS and other childhood friends. He had COVID and in the course of that treatment learned he had an aggressive form of cancer, was in hospital for a day or two and passed away last night. We are once again grieving for a much loved and respected classmate. His was a Kirkwood family for sure. Tim Lapping is also in San Antonio so hopefully they have been in touch but Jim will let Tim know. Mike, Tim's brother and a bit behind us in school, will likely remember Jim and Linda Girard Day too. We were all little kids together, and it's just so difficult to absorb that we are aging as we seems like our lives have flown by! And yet we all have wonderful stories to tell and so many of us have lived good, long lives with great beginnings, we have much to be thankful for. And our memories of those now gone are so rich, we are indeed blessed. Larry will rest in peace and love I'm sure. I will add more info as it becomes available. I have asked Jim to call me next time with some good juicy gossip rather than another piece of sad news.  But it appears in this, the last quarter of our lives, as Bruce Antle kindly described it to me recently, death and illness are going to be prevalent subjects in our correspondence.  When I began doing this, as we planned our 1975 10th reunion in 1974, it never crossed my mind that staying in touch with our classmates this long would be something I would treasure and then would make me so sad.  What a group we are and have been- fun, interesting, smart, adventurous, talented, and now so many gone from that group. 

 I have lost two of my older good galpals in the last month, which is sad in itself, but at least those I expected over the years.  When we are young I don't think we realize what older years are going to bring; yes, the obvious, but perhaps not the sadness that comes with losing our friends.  I'll never forget the words of a former-grandmother-in-law who, at age 104, said to me "I am so angry, I have no one to talk to, no one who cares about what I know or want to say, and the doctor won't even let me walk to the bar [just down the street] and have a beer!"  She died not long after vociferously pronouncing that to me!  I'll never forget it because it was an eye-opener - once we get too old there really isn't much we remember that will also be remembered by those around us.  Jack and I talk about that often as we ruminate through our lives.  STAY WELL everyone!  BTW I am sure the reason that 104 year old woman lived so long is because she always loved beer and of course beer is full of B vitamins; I think her nutrition stood her in good stead!  :-))



 Hi everyone, today 8/13, I was about to post something new when I discovered this post never made it out of the draft status!  There was a great photo of Bill and I must have loaded it incorrectly...if you are on Facebook, it's there back in June; I'll try to get it reposted here.  The news is now old but the story is great, I hope you feel it's worth the read!   lvr

Heads up Kirkwood, MO folks, both our KHS65 group and plenty of others! I've just received an excellent tribute to KHS66 member Bill Hall, the brother of our beloved KHS65 member Mattie Carol Hall in honor of JUNETEENTH! Mattie was my first friend in second grade when we returned to the St. Louis area from Wichita after a 3 year hiatus for dad's career. Mom took me to school in February, 1955 to my first day of George R. Robinson School, 2nd grade, Miss Clark's class, with no paper or pencil. I was seated behind Mattie and she turned and handed me one of each as Miss Clark announced we were to produce same to begin writing! I am still grateful for Mattie's rescuing me that day...what a wonderful friendship to have for all of these 67 years! We're so glad to have Mattie back in our KHS65 bubble, if not in our backyards, after her years away conquering her world! Thanks for the memories Mattie and thanks SO much for sharing Bill's insightful view of our world. He's a winner for sure! HAPPY JUNETEENTH!
"Let’s celebrate and honor our ancestors by loving one another, and working together for justice, equality and peace… Below is the link to an article I’m sharing from my ‘hometown’ newspaper, about the holiday’s history, featuring my brother, KHS’66, Professor William Hall - “Bill Hall,” in St. Louis."Juneteenth
The emancipation of American slaves during t