Mr. Thomas O. Keesee

b. 11 Aug 1905 -
d. Aug 1979 - Newport News, VA

Hampden-Sydney College: B.S., University of Virginia: M.S.

Mathematics, Science

Dean of Boys, Assistant Principal

Father of  Tommy Keesee ('54) of VA and   Mrs. Nancy Rose Keesee Tucker (Barr) ('57) of TX

1941 Beacon (Yearbook) 1950 Anchor, p. 19 1957 Anchor, p. 8 1958 Anchor, p. 52 1964 Anchor, p. 45
Courtesy of Dave Spriggs ('64)
of VA - 04/07/03
Thanks, Dave!
07/13/16 Courtesy of Eleanor Buckley
Nowitzky ('59) of NC - 06/30/04
Thanks, Eleanor!
Courtesy of Eleanor Buckley Nowitzky ('59) of NC - 04/22/05
Thanks, Eleanor!
Courtesy of Dave Spriggs ('64)
of VA - 04/07/03
Thanks, Dave!

... Now, Mr. Keesee was another thing.  My first encounter with him was when he sent for me to report
to his office one morning during first period to tell me that I was wanted at the Newport News Police
Department right away!!  I almost fell in the floor. To make matters worse, he didn't tell me why they
wanted to see me.  As it turned out, I was working part-time after school at Home Furniture Company
and they had been robbed the night before.  All employees had to go to the Police Department to be
fingerprinted so our fingerprints could be distinguished from the culprit's.  Mr. Keesee, Mr. Wheary,
and Miss Gildersleeve all had a chuckle for me when I returned and seemed to delight in kidding
me about it from then on.
Renee Helterbran Benton ('59) of VA - 10/17/05

GIGGLES!!!  Thanks, Renee!

I had the pleasure of having Mrs. Graves as my teacher of Algebra 4 in the second semester of the 9th grade--remember the fun of Algorithms??. As Glenn (Dye - '60 - of TX) correctly noted, bless her heart, she did wear glasses that looked like Coke bottle bottoms and then had clip-ons over them! The poor woman had to be legally blind, but she kept at it!! And as Ray (Barnes - '65 - of VA) put it, at our age at that time she did appear 90 years old--that's bad, really bad, but true! My story I remember well to this day--as you so well noted. The past is not what gives my memory trouble, it's last week.

She had been out sick for awhile and the substitute we had in that class moved along at a good clip--we covered  a lot of ground in Mrs. Graves' absence. Finally, she returned and on her first day back instructed us to turn to a certain chapter to begin our work--one that we had already covered along with a couple more. The rest of the class looked my way to say something--knowing I was the only idiot that would say anything to her. I raised my hand, and called out her name--you had to do that so that she would be able to locate your vicinity. Anyway, I said Mrs. Graves, we've already covered that chapter with the substitute and...that was as far as I got! Then she nailed me.

I had evidently struck a nerve, because she said: how dare you to tell me how to run my class and something to the effect that she had been teaching for more years than I was alive--she didn't take my help well. Once the verbal assault was over, she said you go up to Mr. Keesee's office and tell him I sent you!! I still don't think she knew who it was she was sending? I being the good student I was (yeah, right!) I set out to Mr. Keesee's office--knocking on the side of his open door when I arrived, he said, "What is it, Stokes?" I said Mrs. Graves had sent me to him--what happened, he asked-- I relayed the story and he said, and I still remember this, "You know how she is, just don't say anything. She'll eventually figure it out." The he asked what my next class was--it was lunch-and said don't go back there today and take an early lunch--and try to stay out of trouble!!

That's it!!

- Wayne Stokes ('65) of VA - 04/09/11

Thanks, Wayne!

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