Provide free mammograms!

12/20/06 - NNHS Newsletter
The Birthday of a King

"I truly believe that if we keep telling the Christmas story, singing the Christmas songs, and living the Christmas spirit,
we can bring joy and happiness and peace to this world."

 - Norman Vincent Peale
(31 May 1898 - 24 Dec 1993)

Dear Friends and Schoolmates, 

   Today's theme was suggested only a few days ago:


  From Jean Poole Burton ('64) of RI - 12/16/06:

..... Another favorite of mine is "Birthday of the King". 

   I was totally unfamiliar with this carol, but when Jean sent me the lyrics, I couldn't resist.  Thanks, Lady!  Merry Christmas!


   Today is also the fifth full day of Hanukkah.  I hope you're having a wonderful time!



  From Jerry Blanchard ('62) of VA - 12/21/06 - "  Dicky Dawes (NNHS/HHS - '62 - of VA)":


Just a short note to ask you to pass on to everyone to keep Dicky and his    Sharron (Wanderer Dawes - '61 - of VA) in their prayers, during the coming days. Sharron is in the hospital and not doing too well. I do not know if Dickie has said anything to you about her condition, but she needs all the prayers we can muster for her, and Dickie.  

Jerry (class of 62) Blanchard

   OH, NO!!!  I'm so very sorry to hear this, Jerry!  We'll certainly keep Dicky and Sharron in all our prayers - and thanks so much for letting us know!


  From Nancy Mitchell Wynne ('64) of MD - 12/19/06 -    Judy Edwards Andrews - (64 - of VA):

Becky Cash Blakemore ('64 - of DE) has    Judy Edwards' address and is in contact with her. 

Merry Christmas!

   Thanks, Sweet Nancy!     David (Spriggs - '64 - of VA) (and now   Michael Sisk - '63 - of CA) had Judy's full address in Suffolk;  I just "bleeped" most of it for privacy reasons.  I didn't realize that Becky was still in touch with her, however.  How fabulous!

   Thanks again, Nancy - and Merry Christmas to you and    Bill (Wynne - '63)!


  From Catherine Slusser Hudson ('64) of VA - 12/19/06 - "Ho Ho Ho!!!":

I just got this from a good buddy, and had to share it.  It sorta sums up the secular "reason for the season:"

I remember my first Christmas adventure with Grandma. I was just a kid. I remember tearing across town on my bike to visit her on the day my big sister dropped the bomb: "There is no Santa Claus," she jeered. "Even dummies know that!"

My Grandma was not the gushy kind, never had been. I fled to her that day
because I knew she would be straight with me. I knew Grandma always told the truth, and I knew that the truth always went down a whole lot easier when
swallowed with one of her "world-famous" cinnamon buns. I knew they were world-famous, because Grandma said so.

It had to be true.

Grandma was home, and the buns were still warm. Between bites, I told her everything. She was ready for me. "No Santa Claus?" She snorted...."Ridiculous! Don't believe it. That rumor has been going around for years, and it makes me mad, plain mad!! Now, put on your coat, and let's go."

"Go? Go where, Grandma?" I asked. I hadn't even finished my second world-famous cinnamon bun.

"Where" turned out to be Kerby's General Store, the one store in town that had a little bit of just about everything. As we walked through its doors, Grandma handed me ten dollars.

That was a bundle in those days. "Take this money," she said, "and buy something for someone who needs it. I'll wait for you in the car. "Then she turned and walked out of Kerby's.

I was only eight years old. I'd often gone shopping with my mother, but never had I shopped for anything all by myself.
The store seemed big and crowded, full of people scrambling to finish their Christmas shopping. For a few moments I just stood there, confused, clutching that ten-dollar bill, wondering what to buy, and who on earth to buy it for. I thought of everybody I knew: my family, my friends , my neighbors, the kids at school, and the people who went to my church.

I was just about thought out, when I suddenly thought of Bobby Decker. He was a kid with bad breath and messy hair, and he sat right behind me in Mrs. Pollock's grade-two class.

Bobby Decker didn't have a coat. I knew that because he never went out to recess during the winter. His mother always wrote a note, telling the teacher that he had a cough, but all we kids knew that Bobby Decker didn't have a cough; he didn't have a good coat. I fingered the ten-dollar bill with growing excitement. I would buy Bobby Decker a coat!

I settled on a red corduroy one that had a hood to it. It looked real warm, and he would like that.

"Is this a Christmas present for someone?" the lady behind the counter asked kindly, as I laid my ten dollars down.
"Yes, ma'am," I replied shyly. "It's for Bobby."

The nice lady smiled at me, as I told her about how Bobby really needed a good winter coat. I didn't get any change, but she put the coat in a bag, smiled again, and wished me a Merry Christmas.

That evening, Grandma helped me wrap the coat (a little tag fell out of the coat, and Grandma tucked it in her Bible) in Christmas paper and ribbons and wrote, "To Bobby, From Santa Claus" on it. Grandma said that Santa always insisted on secrecy. Then she drove me over to Bobby Decker's house, explaining as we went that I was now and forever officially, one of Santa's helpers.

Grandma parked down the street from Bobby's house, and she and I crept noiselessly and hid in the bushes by his front walk.

Then Grandma gave me a nudge. "All right, Santa Claus," she whispered, "get going."  I took a deep breath, dashed for his front door, threw the present down on his step, pounded his door and flew back to the safety of the bushes and Grandma.

Together we waited breathlessly in the darkness for the front door to open.  Finally it did, and there stood Bobby.

Fifty years haven't dimmed the thrill of those moments spent shivering, beside my Grandma, in Bobby Decker's bushes.

   This is such a wonderful passage, Cathy; I really appreciate it!  Thanks so much!

   And Merry Christmas to you and   Doc (Hudson - Warwick HS - '60!


  From Harmon Gordon ('63) of VA - 12/19/06:


If you can, I would appreciate you adding my birthday to your current's February 11, 1945 ( I graduated from NNHS Class of 1963).

You're doing a fantastic job with the Newsletters. I really enjoy reading all the different stories our classmates have to offer.

Keep up the excellent work and have a very healthy and happy holiday season!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!



   Certainly, Harmon, I'd be delighted!

   I'm glad you're enjoying it all - and Happy Holidays!


    From  Chandler Nelms (Hampton HS - '63) of MD - 12/19/06:


I haven’t been a contributor for some time now, but I continue to read the newsletters with great interest and smiles, as well as sadness when one of our old friends leaves us. I continue to marvel at the wonderful Peninsula trivia and photos that surface due to a grand devotion to another place and another time. I often wonder if there is any place else on earth that has such devotion to nostalgia. Isn’t it wonderful?

Anyway, I’d just like to thank you for another year of being the glue that keeps us together and to all who contribute to make the newsletter something fun to look forward to everyday. And oh yeah, Happy Holidays, everyone!

Chandler Nelms

   Thanks, Chandler Darlin'! And when I around to it, there's a marvelous "new" collection of old images that bring enormous delight.  I just hafta catch up with myself long enough to prepare and post them!

   Merry Christmas, Gorgeous!


From Dale Parsons ('48) of VA - 12/19/06 - "A Must See":

Something you all grew up with --- enjoy.
Dale Parsons 48

Pretty cool if you watched TV as a kid...

   This is super cool!  If y'all have not seen it before, I must warn you, you'll be caught up in a wonderful wave of nostalgia from which you might not wish to return!

   Thanks so much, Dale - and Merry Christmas!


From My Niece, Shari, of VA - 12/19/06 - "10 top funniest viral videos":

   These are hysterical, Lady!  Thanks!


From My Niece, Shari, of VA - 12/19/06:

The movie is touching even if you're heard the story a bunch of times.
                                                                                                 Have a nice night,
An old story, but makes you think!
A nice Christmas card.

  Thanks again, Shari!  Merry Christmas!


  From Glenn Dye ('60) of TX - 12/19/06 - "UPDATE ON MY FOOT":






   Until now, I wasn't sure what was wrong with your foot!

   I'm so glad to hear that you're made such great progress - and yes, with the help of many earnest prayers on your behalf!

  Merry Christmas to you and yours, Glenn!


  From Glenn Dye ('60) of TX - 12/19/06 - "Merry Christmas & Happy New Year!!":

May God bless you and yours.

Today...I wish you a day of ordinary miracles -  
A fresh pot of coffee you didn't have to make yourself.
An unexpected phone call from an old friend.
Green stoplights on your way to work or shop.
I wish you a day of little things to rejoice in...
The fastest line at the grocery store.
A good sing along song on the radio.
Your keys right where you look.  

I wish you a day of happiness and perfection-little bite-size pieces of perfection that give you the funny feeling that the Lord is smiling on you, holding you so gently because you are someone special and rare.

I wish You a day of Peace, Happiness and Joy.

They say it takes a minute to find a special person, an hour to appreciate them, a day to love them, but then an entire life to forget them.

... Wishing you the very best for 2007  

   These are warm, fuzzy thoughts, Glenn - thanks! 


  From Glenn Dye ('60) of TX - 12/19/06 - "A special Christmas message":


If I decorate my house perfectly with plaid bows, strands of
twinkling lights and shiny balls, but do not show love to my family, friends,
neighbors and co-workers, I'm just another decorator.

If I slave away in the kitchen, baking dozens of Christmas cookies,
preparing gourmet meals and arranging a beautifully adorned table at mealtime,
but do not show love to my family, friends, neighbors and co-workers, I'm just
another cook.

If I work at the soup kitchen, carol in the nursing home and give
all that I have to charity, but do not show love to my family, friends,
neighbors and co-workers, it profits me nothing.

If I trim the spruce with shimmering angels and crochet
snowflakes, attend a myriad of holiday parties and sing in the choir's cantata but do not
focus on Christ, I have missed the point.

Love stops the cooking to hug the child. Love sets aside the
decorating to kiss the spouse. Love is kind, though harried and tired. Love doesn't
envy another's home that has coordinated Christmas china and table linens.

Love doesn't yell at the kids to get out of the way, but is thankful
they are there to be in the way. Love doesn't give only to those who are able
to give in return but rejoices in giving to those who can't.

Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things,
endures all things. Love never fails. Video games will break, pearl necklaces
will be lost, golf clubs will rust, but giving the gift of love will endure.

   I really liked and appreciated this selection, Glenn!  Thanks so much!


  From Norman Covert ('61) of MD - 12/19/06 - "Newsletter Note":

Dear Carol, Queen of the Web,


Allow me to send a two-parter here after having been gently chastised by one of the princesses of 33rd Street . I apologize to    Renee Helterbran Benton ('59) (pronounced "Reeney" in those days). I can only excuse not mentioning our storied neighborhood in my earlier reminiscence for the sake of brevity.    Miss Suttle insisted on it!  


  For your edification I attach a picture of Princess Renee at the spring 1952 Piano Recital for students of Mrs. Ennis Rees, of 500 block of 30th St .  The recital was held at Tabernacle Baptist Church adjacent to the "new" Thomas Jefferson Elementary School.
Spring 1952 Piano Recital
Princess Renee Helterbran


Renee helped keep tabs on the street urchins that included me, her brother Buddy (Robert Helterbran, '61), David Saunders and Pete Hughes ( St. Vincent's students). The block provided a host of top-grade Typhoons including: my Mother Betsy Goodson Covert ('37); aunts Christine Goodson Hensel ('41?) and Arlene Goodson Davis ('45?); Uncle Carl Goodson (football, etc, '52?); Aunt Myra Goodson Jessen ('54); Gail and Harold Gaskins; Christine and her brother Harold (Kimbo) Jones (another football luminary); of course my brother    Harry ('57), sister Rachel Covert Paquette ('64), sister Fay Covert Stansbury (Ferguson HS '72), the last of the lot; she was transferred when NNHS was closed.


Thanks Carol and Renee. Once again my Christmas shopping depends on stores staying open late! Will send part two after I locate the impeccable Oyster Stew recipe. Gotta have it!


Happy, Happy,


Norm Covert ('61)

   This is just wonderful, Norm!  Thanks!  Renee (short for Irene, hence the pronunciation), you're an adorable princess!


  From Norman Covert ('61) of MD - 12/19/06 - "Website Note Part Two":

Dear Webmistress Carol,


With your indulgence here's part two to my windy recall of 33rd Street brought about by   Renee Helterbran's straightening me out -- again. Here is the entire picture from which I extracted her "Princess" pose. Renee also appears to be the teacher's pet, standing next to Mrs. Ennis S. Rees, upper right.


By way of background, with few exceptions, those of us on 33rd Street were sent to the home of Mrs. Rees, to learn some culture and piano. Take a gander at this stunning and talented group posing prior to the 1952 recital. It was held at Tabernacle Baptist Church on 30th Street. Sadly, some of these great kids are no longer with us. Dressing up in our formals and trying to play our music from memory was a spring ritual. I published the picture in my 1985 family history, "Tree of Life ". My memory failed when I tried to name everyone.



Spring 1952 Piano Recital
Students of Mrs. Ennis S. Rees
Tabernacle Baptist Church, Newport News, VA



Here's a revised caption: My Aunt Myra Lee Goodson, '54 (fourth from upper left);    Harry Covert Jr. '57 (third row, right);    Norman Covert '61 (center front row); flanked by    Lucy Blandford '61 (on my right); and on my left Cousin Juanita Gaines (HHS); Robert (Buddy) Helterbran '61; and George Helmer (not to be confused with Bernie or Bobby). Others identifiable include: Lucy's younger sister Mary Blandford '62 (second row, third from left); Lucille Ritenour and    Renee Helterbran '59, (second from end, third row); middle of back row are Faith Strickland ('64) and her sister Ruth Strickland; and (top row, middle) close friend Gail Gaskins.


We all were so perky, stage struck and good looking, weren't we (blush).


Thanks for indulging me, Carol, believe Santa knows your address. Hope you can handle all this. Hope to talk offline with Renee soon.


Best to all this holiday season,

Norm Covert ('61)

   WOWZERONI-RINI-ROONI!  What a treasure!

   I posted it here to keep forever:

   And Normie, if Santa finds me this year, I'm afraid it will have to be another one of those Christmas miracles!

   I described one such Christmas miracle in this piece I wrote back in 1998 for my seven children:

   (OOOPS!!!  This entire site seems to have been overtaken with Vonage commercials.  I think I'll just print the story below...)

   But that's okay, it promises to be filled with much love and laughter, anyway!

   Thanks again, Norm - and Merry Christmas!


  From Me ('65) of VA - 12/23/98 - "Christmas 1953":

Christmas 1953

   The Christmas I was six years old will probably forever stand out in my mind as the most memorable. It had been a very bad year, and my parents had no reason to believe that Christmas would be any better. Probably to relieve this bleak feeling, it was decided that we would return home for Christmas - home, to Richmond.

   We had spent the year in a small mining town in Appalachia called Clintwood. Serving as the only general medical practitioner,   Daddy (Robert Buckley - John Marshall HS - '25) was nevertheless somehow not paid $5,000.00 which had been promised him by the hospital owners, and that, as they say, was a lot of money in those days. It was a 400-mile trip back home, and I rather think it was a sudden decision, somewhat unexpected on both sides. I'm not sure (my paternal grandmother)    Sudie (Ursula Janie Tuck Buckley) and (aunt) Virginia (Buckley - John Marshall HS - '27) were expecting us, mainly because I recall we had no stockings to hang out for Santa Claus, and had to use a pair of Virginia's nylon stockings - which stretched endlessly, making them almost impossible to fill, no matter how many delights were stuffed within.

   I remember a bustle of activity shortly before we left Clintwood.    Mama (Maxine Frix Buckley - John Marshall HS - '25) had taken me shopping, and knowing we had had a very rough year, I asked for nothing. But Mama wanted to go look at the dolls (she was a real doll lover), and despite my best attempts to remain politely passive, I was doomed in that effort, because, suddenly, there she was - The Most Beautiful Doll in the World.

   She was, I think, a 24" doll, which was touted as "life-size". She came in her own red vinyl stroller, which alone was quite exciting. Her dress was of sheer nylon, pale yellow with a light green (my favorite color!) apron built right in. She was strong and robust looking, not wimpy and silly as were most dolls. She had gorgeous medium brown "real rooted hair" which could be combed and styled - a real luxury feature in those days. But what drew her to me, what struck me deep in the heart, what betrayed me by causing me to suck in my breath with an audible gasp, was the expression on her lovely face. It was proud and haughty. She as much as screamed her unattainability, and combined it with a tilt to her eyebrows (above her pretty blue eyes with "real" eyelashes!) that said, "I am above all this; I simply do not care that you can never own me." She was, after all, The Most Beautiful Doll in the World, and for all I knew, probably the most expensive. After some few moments of admiring her as millions must have admired the equally unattainable Mona Lisa, I bid her goodbye, knowing my life had been enriched by the very meeting.

   I believe that same day we left for Richmond; I may be wrong. On the trip we stopped for dinner - a late dinner - at a roadside restaurant in Marion called the Virginia House. The restaurant had an adjoining gift shop (how thoughtful!). While we were there,   Eleanor (Buckley Nowitzky - '59 - of NC) saw a steel blue circular music box, which had almost the same effect on her twelve-year old being as the doll had had on me. The top was designed to hold dusting powder, and came with a big, white, fluffy puff concealed inside. When wound it played a wonderful tune of undetermined origin. (I remember it even now, although I have never been able to identify it.) She lovingly placed it back on the shelf, and the two of us returned to the car with Daddy. Mama, for some reason, had to lag behind.

   Back in Richmond, Daddy's sister, Virginia, knowing it had been a very bad year, and we would have no Christmas, bought a complete Christmas for Eleanor and me. And Mama's sister,    Frances (Frix Atkinson), knowing it had been a very bad year, and we would have no Christmas, bought a complete Christmas for Eleanor and me. But by some indomitable will, Mama had somehow managed a rather decent Christmas on her own. We arrived at Sudie's late on Christmas Eve, after the usual feast and gift exchange were over. Sudie's brother, Mark (Tuck), was there, and her baby sister,    Neville (Tuck), too. Well, they lived there now, didn't they? This was the year I was privileged to sleep in Neville's antique trundle bed. What a treat!

   So we hung up our very strange stockings and went off to bed, hoping Santa Claus might somehow figure out where we were, 400 miles away from where he was surely expecting to find us. But, come Christmas morning, it was apparent to everyone that he had certainly found us. When the adults assembled downstairs rang Neville's cowbell tied to the bottom of the steps, thus signaling Eleanor and me that the time had come to go down, I remember running down the first few stairs, and flying down the rest, scaring the daylights out of my poor Sudie.

   But I had seen an unbelievable sight. The entire front parlor floor was filled with one treasure after another - incredible, wonderful toys for Eleanor and me; forbidden toys that Mama never would have bought us. There were toys that had lots of little pieces (which Mama hated, because of their habit of getting lost), toys that were wrapped and toys that were unwrapped, puzzles and games and joys untold. And there, like a queen, surveying it all, in her wonderful red vinyl stroller, sat The Most Beautiful Doll in the World. And in the background came the strains of Eleanor's magnificent music box. And we knew that Santa Claus was real, forever and undeniably real.

   And we never went back to Clintwood again. We were home.

                                                                                                                                      ~ Carol Randolph Buckley Harty



   Reunion information is ALWAYS posted very near the top on the front page, and on the Reunion Page section:

   Henceforth, it will be repeated here, lest you forget:
The NNHS Class of 1962
will hold its 45-Year Reunion on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, September 21, 22 and 23, 2007
at the Point Plaza Suites, 950 J. Clyde Morris Boulevard, Newport News, VA 23601.

Suites will be available that will include breakfast on Saturday and Sunday.

Visit Brenda's 1962 Web Page:


The NNHS Class of 1957 
is planning its 50-Year Class Reunion,
Friday, Saturday, and Sunday,
September 7, 8 and 9, 2007
at the Omni Hotel in Newport News, VA.

More details to follow!

The NNHS Class of 1958
is planning its 50th Anniversary Reunion,

Friday and Saturday, May 16 -17, 2008.

The Noble Gathering

More details to follow!


From One of my Famous Marines -    Herb Hice of MI, who served in the Pacific Theater during WWII - 12/07/06 - "Dear Carol, Some Cute Animal Pix" (#13 in a series of 20):


Dear Carol,

Everyone knows how much I love animals SO, I receive loads of these pictures.

Your Friend, Herbie  

  I'm not sure why; perhaps it was because I was tired (I'm almost always tired...), but this little fella made me laugh out loud.  How precious!!!

  Thanks, Herbie Darlin'!



   Happy Hanukkah and Merry Christmas!  Y'all stay happy - and take care of each other!  TYPHOONS FOREVER!   We'll Always Have Buckroe!

                          Love to all, Carol




"I only have two kinds of days: happy and hysterically happy."


Carol Buckley Harty
219 Four Ply Lane
Fayetteville, NC 29311-9305


The Birthday of a King

- William Henry Neidlinger

In the little village of Bethlehem
There lay a child one day
And the sky was bright
With a holy light
O'er the place where Jesus lay.

O how the angels sang!
How it rang!
And the sky was bright
With a holy light
'Twas the birthday of a King.

Humble birthplace
But O
How much God gave to us that day!
From the manger bed what a path has led
What a perfect holy way.

O how the angels sang!
How it rang!
And the sky was bright
With a Holy light
'Twas the birthday of a King.


“Birthday of a King” midi courtesy of - 12/20/056

"Birthday of a King" lyrics courtesy of
as suggested by Jean Poole Burton ('64) of RI - 12/18/06
Thanks, Jean!

Baby Jesus with Lambs clip art courtesy of - 12/04/05

Tiny Baby Jesus clip art used to form Divider Line courtesy
of - 12/23/05

Crab clip art courtesy of - 10/02/05

Marine Corps Seal clip art courtesy of Herbert Hice of MI - one of my Famous Marines who served in the South Pacific during WWII.
Thanks, Herbie!

Back to NNHS Newsletters - 2006

Return to NNHS Class of 1965