East Forsyth Senior High School Class of 1979
This page was last modified on 11 December 2004.
As always, thanks for taking the time to read this latest, on time for a change, issue of the East Forsyth Class of 1979 Newsletter. In order to keep y'all better informed, I plan on putting the newsletter on a quarterly schedule through December 2003 or March 2004 after which you can expect monthly issues leading up to our silver anniversary reunion next year. Damn, can you believe that come next year it'll be 25 years since we graduated!? Where does the time go?
I must confess that I'm already excitedly looking forward to our 2004 reunion. I attribute much of my anticipation to maintaining this site which requires me to be actively involved in the process at least a few times a week, not only for our class but others as well. In addition to serving our class, I try to make the site helpful to our fellow Fighting Eagles from other classes through our EFHS Class Web Sites and Reunion Contacts page; during the past month, I've updated the entries for the Classes of 1978, 1983, and 1993. The excitement of reunion season is definitely intoxicating, especially with our own reunion so near.
In a promising sign, I've noticed in the access logs that members of other classes are stumbling into the site on searches for their respective classes, and some have even taken the time to sign the Guestbook. Hopefully our missing classmates will do the same over the next year as they start thinking about our reunion. I've managed to position the site in the all-important top ten ratings with the search engines on the relevant keywords, so no one should have any trouble finding us if they only look.
For those of you who haven't been visiting the site regularly, you really need to visit soon. Over the past few months, I've made some tweaks here and there, some needed redesign and archiving, and even a major overhaul which should elicit some sort of emotional reaction from most, if not all, of you. You'll find the details below.
As always, an HTML version of this newsletter will be posted in the archive after the text version has been e-mailed. The archived versions of the newsletter have hyperlinks to the most recently modified sections of the site. If you want to see a specific change, all you have to do is click on what you want without surfing through the site.
Matt Wallace, Class Webmaster
Silver Reunion 2004
20 Year Reunion Chairman Mike Beshears is continuing to work as interim coordinator for the 2004 Reunion Committee. With more than a year to go, it may seem rather early to be worrying about our next reunion, but there's a great deal of work to be done and most of it has to be completed within the next year. If you're interested in serving on the 2004 Reunion Committee, contact Mike as soon as you can.
Even if you're unable to assist with the formal reunion committee, you can still help out by participating in "Operation Eagle Dog" which is my effort to get the Class Directory up to 100 percent. You can participate by locating your old high school friends and getting them reconnected with us here on our web site.
A successful reunion doesn't just happen; it is the product of the efforts of all involved. Whether working on the reunion committee, seeking out our lost classmates, or simply publicizing this site and our reunion plans, each of us can make a contribution. Why not do your part in making our silver reunion a soaring success?
When I started the site in the Fall of 1999, my primary objective was to create a fully functioning site and to establish it on the web quickly. As a consequence, I had to compromise my design vision for those site features which I knew would be too time-consuming. At any rate, I could always implement my original plans later when time allowed.
The class directory was most affected by my self-imposed time constraints. The directory was easily the largest, most complicated section of the site, and I knew what I actually wanted to do would require far more time than I could invest. I was content with the stripped-down, 15-page, 50-entries-per-page version with which everyone has become familiar; it was clean, neat, and efficient, and did what I wanted it to do. Even so, the original directory required a great deal of work to create.
After putting it off for three and a half years, I finally felt prepared to take on the task of implementing my original vision for the class directory. Starting sometime in the first half of May, I began what I knew was going to be a most arduous effort. Sparing you the gory, boring details, I trudged through the seemingly interminable work which I completed in dribs and drabs. There were too many moments when I felt like I wasn't making any progress and was ready to just chuck it all. Finally, after working an average of perhaps 4-6 hours a day for 3-4 weeks, I got the job done on 4 June.
I'm glad I persevered; nothing is so satisfying as imagining something, and then bringing it into existence, especially if it required a great struggle. Each of you must go to the main Alumni Contacts page, locate the page with your entry, then visit your entry. I'm looking forward to the oohs and aahs as well as the shrieks of horror! Yes, I'm a truly evil man! Enjoy!
As always, the online class directory continues to plod along towards the ultimate goal of accounting for 100% of the class. Currently we have some sort of info for about 32% of the class and e-mail addresses for about 17% which would be higher if people kept their info current.
Please remember, there are several ways you can help build our alumni directory. First, make sure your info is as complete as you care to make it and keep it current. Second, if you are currently in contact with any classmates for whom we have no or only partial info, please inform them of our web site and have them update. Finally, make a point of tracking down your old friends who are among our missing classmates and have them register with us. Again, I thank those of you who are spreading the word about our class web site; your efforts are helping.
If any of you are in contact with the following classmates, please ask them to update their e-mail addresses at the very least:
Additions and updates in Alumni Contacts since last newsletter:
Keeping In Touch
One of the most important purposes of our class web site is the fostering of communication amongst class members. There are several methods for getting in touch with classmates, both on-site and off-site.
Don't forget that we have a message board for disseminating news about and for class members. If you get a promotion, complete a degree, add a new family member, move to a new city, take a new job, suffer an unspeakable tragedy requiring your classmates' moral support, simply want to toot your own horn, etc., then by all means let us all know about it! If you have similar news about a classmate or our teachers and other East Forsyth staff members, please submit that as well. The posts since the last newsletter are:
As always, the guestbook is available for brief comments. You can simply offer your greetings to the class just to let everyone know you visited the site, you could throw out a query about classmate, etc. Of course, it never hurts to tell the webmaster what you think of the site, and the guestbook is an appropriate forum. You can use the Guestbook Form, send an e-mail with subject line "Guestbook Entry", or simply mention that your message may be posted in the Guestbook.
I encourage everyone to start a web page or web site; to help you get started, check out "Internet Resources" on the Links main page. A page or site will enable you to share more detailed info with your classmates. You can tell us about your family, your career, your hobbies, or whatever else you would like to tell us and the world. If we all had web sites, we could have an ongoing virtual reunion. Just send me your URL, and I'll add it to Classmate Web Sites and Web Pages in our Links section and your class directory entry as well.
After more than a year's respite, we suffered another classmate death in late May when Daniel Dean (Dan) Dyson died. Also, the trend I detected during the period of the last newsletter, the death of parents of members of our class and nearby classes, continued. In addition to those noted in the Message Board entries detailed above, the mother of Wade Ragland (Class of 1978) and Sandy Ragland Martin (Class of 1980) died the same weekend as Mitzi Culler Jahn's father.
I'm still seeking confirmation of the death of Samuel Alan (Sam) Mabe. I'm fairly certain that I read his obituary in the Winston-Salem Journal during the late '80s or early '90s and that he died in Wilmington, NC. If he died in Wilmington, his death certificate would have been issued by New Hanover County. A phone call to the vital records department of the New Hanover County Registrar of Deeds could readily determine the date of his death and probably birth date and parents as well. Once I have a death date, locating his obituary would be no problem. Perhaps someone living down that way could help me out with this.
If you have more details on the remaining members of this unfortunate list, I would greatly appreciate you forwarding dates of birth and death, date and source of any obituaries and news articles, etc. to me. If you have more info about our deceased classmates or need to notify us of the death of a classmate or teacher, please submit it using the Absent Friends Form.
Additions and updates in Absent Friends since last newsletter:
Finally, an "Administrative Note": If you receive an e-mail from me on any of the addresses I use for my various sites, please avoid the pro forma inclusion of my original message in your reply. I save both outgoing and incoming e-mail, so including my message in the reply is both redundant and unnecessary. This is one of my greatest Internet pet peeves. Aside from the acceptable use of brief snips for clarity, please, don't do it ... ever. This especially applies to this newsletter!
Until next issue, take care!