Monday, June 27, 2011

Another Blast from the Past....Venice Florida 1959-60

The Midwest, at least the farther west Midwest, think Iowa,  got clobbered last night with more strong storms...Jim Olson called from Minot, North Dakota, saying the flood waters there, were still on the rise, and would crest maybe by Wednesday...What a season!  Almost makes you wish for Winter, almost...but not quite. We are waiting on storms today, but for now they appear to be hitting Indiana, and wavering as they approach Western we will see how hard and with how much rain they strike us with.

Sam and I headed south to Sidney, some 50 miles south and east on Saturday morning, and worked a American Legion double header with Madison County.  The first game started at 11am, and we were finished by 3, even with a break for the teams to share in some Pizza between games.  I did the plate in the opener, Sam in the second game, and both lasted no more than an hour and a half.  Pitching ruled as Sidney swept both games, 5-1 and 2-0.  We were home by 4:30....tonight, weather permitting, and tomorrow, I finish up the regular ACME Season, and then the tournaments begin on Thursday....those will take me through most of July, along with our usual work helping out in a couple of Pony League Tournaments, the only time I work less that High School baseball, but a fun way to finish the season.  Seems like it just began.

The rest of the weekend was spent entertaining Hal's dogs, mowing lawns, and sitting on the back steps, cooking on the grill between beers and cigars.  I also watched my favorite western "Lonesome Dove" on AMC.  Funny, I have the entire mini series on DVD, but usually watch it when it comes on TV...go figure?  One thing I did notice, with the beers and sitting, I have gained about 7 pounds back this Sp[ring, and am approaching the 195 pound point on my 5' 11" frame.  Sure, that is down from the 220 during my weight lifting days, but still up from the 183 that I hit last summer, and the 187-188 point that I felt comfortable with over the winter.  Guess I better cut back on those grill delights and that stuff in the bottles.  Cut back mind you, not quit.  Hell that's what Summer is all about...

Venice(Florida) Elementary School 1959-60____

One thing about Facebook, despite all the BS and politics, it is a great way to find old faces and names from your past, or for them to find you.  It has worked for me, even without making a concentrated effort.  Type in a name on the FB search or a place, and with the explosion of that Social Network, someone from out of the past is sure to respond.   It has happened to me on several occasions, whether it be folks that I have known from my Air Force days, early Celina, or even back from 50 and more years ago,  finding people that I knew in Venice.  Several have contacted me, or I have found them, usually quite by accident.

One found happened Friday...I was messing around with naming Venice as my hometown.  I have often named that south Florida town, as well as tiny Scott, Ohio, and Celina as my primary hometowns...because I spent more time in those three during my life than anywhere else.  Anyway I came across several old names from the being Ron Dinero.  Ronnie as he was called then, was in several of my classes, and I always considered him on of my friends, along with Mike Graff, Ted Blackburn, Barry Young, Jackie Dye, Mickey Lawrence, and a handful of others.  So this weekend, I not only found Ron, I also found Barry Young.  Ron has a photo posted on his FB homepage, that I had not seen in over 50 years....

The photo, on the top of todays\'s post, was from our 5th grade class, one of three classes in that future Class of 67 at Venice Elementary....Ron is in the second row on the close up cropped photos, he is on the bottom left), I am the last kid on the right, in the top row, with that smirk, goofy, assed "face" I was making.  I sure when our teacher, Mrs Holmes, just below me, saw that mug, she probably wasn't happy.  She had both my older brother Mike, some 3 years before, and me, in her class.  She told mom that she never knew what Mike was thinking, but you always knew what Pat was thinking...{think Big MO-uth I am sure).  I guess I was always the class smart ass in my days at VE(1955-1961).  This photo brought some of those days flooding back into my memory banks.

Funny thing is I can remember almost ever name of every kid in this photo...a couple slip my mind, but most I remember like it was yesterday, some have passed, like Mike Graff(top row, second from left), but most, like Barry Young(on Mike's left) are still alive and kicking.  Many still live in the Venice area, others have moved away, like me.  But I treasure those memories and people, and will until the day I pass from this world.

Tonight I head north to Leipsic, if the game is played, and will probably have a few beers and dinner with my horse training buddy Tom, and crash at his place.  Home tomorrow for one more regular game at Lima Central Catholic....and then it is tournament time.

Back Later>>>>>

Photos-Top Left Venice Florida Elementary School Mrs Holmes 5th Grade Class 1959-60...Me and the Grill....I wasn't as unhappy as I looked in this photo from yesterday...the grill cooking was a success as usual, I was enjoying the cooking and my jungle backyard.  And the cropped portion of that class photo.  Ron Dinero is bottom left, I am top right, just above Mrs Holmes...Harvey Godwin is next to me on my left, and Dave Vandawalker is on Harvey's left.


Jerry in Texas said...

Great class photo, Pat!

L. Dwight Turner said...

Hi There:

Although our paths may have crossed, it was many years ago. My family moved to Venice area in 1959. I was a part of that 1967 class at Venice High and remember Ronnie Dinero, Barry Young, and Mike Graff very well. I attended Nokomis Elementary for grades 5 and 6, then on to Venice Junior High. I suspect we may have had a few classes together before you moved out of town. In the photo, in the second row, that heavy set kid looks a lot like Don Raymond, who was one of my high school buds.

I'll bet you are one of the few folks around who remember the "old" pavilion down on Venice Beach, the big pink building that they leveled in about 1961 to put up the building that is still there. And back then, the KMI's came down every winter and snaked away far too many girlfriends. My dad, who is 91, still lives in South Venice. I live in Tennessee.

You mentioned Venice Byway. I rode my bike down the old byway on my way to Junior High School every day. I remember the Blackburns, the Currys, and the Carney brothers, Jim and ?, who lived out there. We lived in Nature's Park, which was down by Edmonson Groves.

Ronnie Dinero played in several bands in high school, as did myself and also Barry Young. Barry was a solid drummer and his little brother Mike was a basketball star. Venice has changed so much, and I often pine away for the old days. It was such a special place in those days.

Dwight Turner

PRH....... said...

Hey Dwight, glad you stopped by....I have the old class of 67 year book, and remember the face....sadly, all too many of us have passed on. Including Mike Graff, Barry Young, Joel Underwood, and others....I keep in contact with Anne Tharp Taylor, Sandy Badger, Ronnie, Robert Mikesell, and others...yes indeed, the old days in Venice were special. Take care and stop by again.