Saturday, March 29, 2008

Prayer request for a classmate

Some of you know about the tough time our classmate Lynne has had the last decade. After Ed's death, she twice faced cancer surgery and was successful in that battle. She didn't give up and is a real fighter. However, the last few years she's had mysterious vomiting episodes (sorry if this sounds unpleasant, but I don't know how else to explain it) which are becoming more frequent requiring trips to the ER, bed rest, and even sleeping sitting up. Obviously, enjoying a good meal is out of the question. First they told her it was the flu, then the adhesions from her surgeries, and now she's going to get another opinion. If you've ever watched Lynne on one of her walks (I can't keep up), you know she loves the out-of-doors, being active, helping others, and of course, campaigning with her beloved party during election periods. So this baffling condition isn't easy to live with for someone who wants to be walking the dog and smelling the flowers (soon).

So, I'm asking all the classmates who might be tuning in, to send up a few prayers in the next few days--first for the doctors that they will be able to determine the problem, then for Lynne's condition that it will settle down enough for her to get her strength back with some food and rest, and of course, for healing.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Klaus Dreyer

Nancy S. called to let me know that Klaus Dreyer, a member of our class as an exchange student in 1955-1956, died in February. According to a letter from his wife Margit, "he died February 8th, 2008 in a hospital at Kaiserslautern, Germany. He had been there 5 weeks. She says "Klaus would have loved to see you at the 50th reunion celebration in 2007. He had a great time in America & he enjoyed it very much"." Nancy said, "I know that every letter I received that he always said to give his regards to any classmate I see along the way." Nancy also sent along this photo of a mini-reunion in 1984 when Klaus was visiting Illinois friends.

The top photo is from my album of a CBYF meeting at our home on Hannah, probably summer 1956, which includes some of the class of 1956. In the top photo with Klaus in the foreground are Carolyn M., Mary Lou S., Sharon R., and Jean M. Others at that evening event were myself, Sylvia T. and Deborah P. and class of '56 members, Joyce K., Barb N., and Gayle D. (and some I can't identify after 52 years). Klaus lived with the Robert Fridleys on their farm, descendants of original settlers from Maryland in the Mt. Morris area. Sylvia adds that he also lived with Jesse and Imogene Fridley, and John and Nell Thomas. He wanted to see the "West", so that summer he rode to the Church of the Brethren Annual Conference in Eugene, Oregon, with Bill and Marge Powers. Bill and Marge were not coming directly back, so Klaus rode back with Annis and Elmer Paul.

According to the booklet prepared by the reunion committee, Klaus wrote that he'd been retired for 5 years and he and Margit had 2 adult sons:
    "It would have been so nice to see so many of you again. My memories of Mt. Morris have always been very strong, very impressive. The year I was with you had the greatest effect on my life. It was the nicest experience I had in my youth. I have such nice memories, especially of Mt. Morris High. It was all so different from my life in my German hometown, also of life in school. In Germany we still suffered a lot from the after Second World War effects. My attitude toward life, towards the democratic structures was extremely influenced by my stay in Illinois. . . I often look at the MOUNDER and see you before me. It's like there had never been 50 years in between. . . I had always wanted to be a farmer, but ended up being a teacher at a German high school with English and Physical Education as subjects."

Recent photo sent by Margit

Monday, March 03, 2008

Second grade teacher, Miss Finkenbinder, dies

From the Rockford paper

ROCKFORD - Olive L. Finkenbinder, 91, of Rockford died February 28, 2008, in Provena St. Anne Nursing Center. She was born March 29, 1916, in Jo Daviess County, Wards Grove Twp., the daughter of David Allen and Lillian (Espe) Finkenbinder. She graduated from Stockton High School in 1933, received her B.S. degree at NIU and her M.S. degree from Rockford College. Her post graduate studies were done at Syracuse University in N.Y. Olive began her teaching career in rural schools in Stephenson County. She continued teaching at public elementary schools in Mount Morris, Kukuihaele, Hawaii and Rockford, where the last five years she was the supervisor of Learning Disabilities Program. Olive retired after 38 years in the teaching profession and became an antique dealer in Scales Mound and later in Rockford at the State Street Mall.

She was an active member of many organizations including, Beth Eden United Methodist Church, United Methodist Women and Delta Kappa Gamma Zeta chapter. Olive enjoyed traveling with her friends to many states, Canada, countries in Europe and Australia. She also enjoyed watching birds, flower gardening and crewel. Survivors include her niece, Carol (Wayne) Noller of Stockton; nephew, Paul (Patricia) Noble of Chester, Vt.; and great-nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her parents; her sisters, Myrna Finkenbinder and Mildred Noble; her brother, Orville Finkenbinder; sister-in-law, Thelma Finkenbinder; and brother-in-law, William H. Noble.

Cremation rites were accorded and burial will be with her parents at the Kent Lutheran Cemetery, Kent. A memorial service will be at 11 a.m. Saturday, March 8, in Beth Eden United Methodist Church, 3201 Huffman Blvd., Rockford, with the Rev. Doug Bowden, pastor, officiating. A luncheon at the church will follow. A sharing time with friends will be held one hour prior to the service. In lieu of flowers, the family requests memorials may be given to Beth Eden United Methodist Church, Delta Kappa Gamma Zeta chapter or any charity. Arrangements by Cremation Society of Illinois, 815-282-6202.