1961 Class Reunion

During our November 18 and 19 class reunion, “Remember when” conversations among 81 classmates stirred vivid memories of significant LMS experiences, 50 years after our graduation.

The celebration during the Homecoming Weekend at LMS was an outstanding experience in so many ways. From the gathering together in the Alumni Dining Hall over the Hess BBQ Friday evening

(prepared by our own Janice Miller Hess’s oldest son) to the high school theatre event (“Up the Down Staircase” good teachers do make a difference), to the announcement of the LMH Boys Soccer State Championship results that evening, it was a great start to our time together for this once-in-a-lifetime celebration.

Then came a series of events on Saturday, including a Class of ‘61 Golf Tournament at the Lancaster Host Golf Resort, the Cruizin’ vehicle show on the front lawn of the Lancaster Campus, the excellent Mennonite Heritage bus tour with Henry Benner’s narrative, and a tour of the Lancaster Campus and resources.

Then on to the Willow Valley Resort for our evening gathering with 156 class members and spouses.

We were honored to have several Class of ‘61 teachers join us there—James Bomberger, Keith Hummel, Charles Longenecker, and Robert Wert. It was just one of many very special moments as we all were able to greet them and express our THANKS for their significant impact on our lives.

The first class reception hosted by Marlin & Doris Thomas was a beautiful beginning to the evening’s events, and the name tags for each class member with their 1961 black and white pictures reminded us that there have been a few changes in the past 50 years. Then we moved from our scattered pockets of talking and laughing to assemble for our 2011 class picture taken by Jonathan Charles.

The scrumptious buffet at Willow Valley was next, along with beautiful dinner harp music by our own Joyce Erb Brunk, followed by reflections from class officers (Don R. Thomas, vice president; Elizabeth Landis Nissley, secretary; and Martha Landis Zimmeman, treasurer), gospel songs by a men’s group (the Silver Chords—Wesley Mast, Ed Moshier, Ken Nissley, Bob Wyble, and Mark Wenger), and the singing of our class and dedication songs. There’s something special about acappella singing that brings back so many fond memories of our Class of ‘61 experiences.

This year’s Reunion Committee included Bob Wyble as chair plus Susan Weaver Godshall, Elizabeth Landis Nissley, Ken Nissley, Don R. Thomas, Charmaine Murphy Thomas, and Ann Mohler Zimmerman. We were blessed to have this opportunity to work together for the Class of ‘61. The experiences of this 50th Year Reunion will live on in our hearts and minds for many years, and our prayer is that it will also benefit the current students, faculty and leadership of LMS.