Published: Sunday, April 18th, 2004
Whereas, some people enjoy dropping names of famous people they have met in foreign climes; many of us prefer to talk about people from our own area who have done well and have become famous in their own areas. Since the publication of our book, I have been privileged to hear from people from throughout our country and have done a lot of thinking about their accomplishments, beginning with their graduation from our high schools. Many of our young people have the notion that they may not be able to accomplish much because they have lived in our county all their lives. They really need to know that they may be able to accomplish even more simply by being Quay Countians and wanting to go forth to be recognized for their efforts. Dr. Harold Nichless, a graduate of the THS class of 1948, became a well-known educator in Iowa and was recently selected as “Man of the Year” in Keosauqua, Iowa. As a teacher and principal, Harold made quite a name for himself, yet he returns to Tucumcari every year to be with friends and to enrich our lives while here. He and I correspond frequently because of our friendship and because he was the culprit who introduced me to computers and the confusion that continues. That introduction made the writing of our book much easier than it would have been had I continued using my quill pen and homemade ink. Recently, General Don Babers, a graduate of the THS class of 1950, called to visit about the book and to ask about many of our friends. Whereas, we remember him for his athletic prowness in high school, many came to know him as an outstanding military leader, once receiving publicity in such magazines as Life. Although we have seen each other infrequently, we visited as if we had been together the day before. He recalled some of the experiences he enjoyed here while growing up and talked as if he might come to Rattler Reunion. We have but to think about people who have lived here and have made names for themselves to know that they were well prepared by the time they left here. We have many professional people scattered all over the United States, and we have many non-professional people who have done very well with their lives. We also have many people who have chosen to remain in our county and have become successful citizens. We need to let our young people know that they can also be successful if they so desire. They may even realize one day that they did so well because of the background they received in our county. The two gentlemen mentioned above have fond memories of their lives here and remain complimentary about the education they received. I know very well that what little I have done through the many decades resulted from that life in the canyons of Ima, from the outstanding teachers I had, and from a most supportive family. Friends offered constant encouragement and made me want to “exceed my grasp.” I have had heroes and heroines throughout my life-relatives, friends, and teachers. The young people also have them if they will but think. They probably have far more because they live in a rural area than they would were they lost in the large cities. Just think of the ones you have in your lives, and you will realize how very fortunate we are to live in our county and to know many famous people who have lived among us. We could make up our own Who’s Who and discover heroes and heroines from all walks of life.
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