Parrish High Class of 1954 holds reunion

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, June 23, 2004

The Prophecy of the Class of ’54 fills the last pages of the Sel-Ala. Did its predictions come true? Perhaps. But, as Class Prophet Bill Kendall wrote::

“I’m going to ask you to come with me to that land where all things might be,

And to picture a magic mirror on the wall, a mirror that will speak and tell us all

Email newsletter signup

All the things that are going to be in the year nineteen hundred and seventy-three

The mirror begins – the story unfolds; a picture appears and we behold.”

And on Friday evening in the year 2004, many of the stories were unfolded. Parrish High graduates, Class of ’54, arrived at the Selma Country Club on the evening of June 11 and were greeted by a shining blue and white 1954 Chevy, restored to like-new condition.

Present for the festive weekend were 142 people, class members and spouses, who enjoyed the Friday gathering – signing in, receiving nametags, all made by classmate Mallory Privett, reading schedules and, most of all, getting reacquainted.

Special guests of the Class of ’54 were Margaret Stocks, who taught English; Wiley Kerlin, biology teacher, and Mrs. Kerlin; and Bernice Pitts, Parrish High secretary.

Reunion events were planned and put together by a team composed of Gail Smith Jewell, Harry Gamble, Sherie Randall Sherrer, Mary Alice Brady Mims, Sam and Miriam Ezell and Veta Sobera Wall.

On Saturday evening the historic St. James Hotel was the setting for the reunion banquet, presided over by Ben Crane, who was present with his wife, classmate Ardis Ruth Powers Crane. The invocation was by Robert Owens and Harry Gamble served as master of ceremonies.

During the festive evening gift baskets were awarded to winners in

these categories: Jim Tait of Spokane, Washington, who traveled the greatest distance; Lawrence Wall, who has changed the least; Louise Mott, who has the most children (7); Billy Hicks, who has the most grandchildren (14 plus two great-grandchildren); Miriam Day and Sam Ezell, the most recently married; and Martha Gayle Walker Carty, who is in her 50th year of marriage.

During the evening the 16 deceased classmates were honored. And announcement was made that donations are being made to the Children’s Department of the Selma Public Library and to the Grist YMCA.

No reunion is complete without a glance through the class yearbook. The pages of Sel-Ala’54 revealed the following:


Ben Crane, president; Milton Boykin, vice president; Nell Allen, secretary-treasurer.


Nell Allen, Billy Speed, Ben Crane, Ardis Powers, Joanne Swink, Ralph O’Flinn, Joan Richardson, Harry Gamble, Ann Yates, Joe Barton, Sherie Randall and Bill Kendall,


Most Likely to Succeed, Joanne Swink and Mallory Privett; Most Popular, Ardis Powers, Billy Speed; Ideal Seniors, Nell Allen and Ben Crane; Best Dancers, Naida Rowell and Milton Boykin; Best Looking, Sherie Randall and Harry Gamble; Most Dignified, Claude Rainer and Bill Kendall; Friendliest, Nell Allen and Joe Barton; Best Dressed, Ann Yates and Barnett Hardy; Most Intellectual, Pat Jones and Don Asquith.

Other categories are: Cutest, Naida Rowell and Billy Moore; Best Figure, Clarice Clonts and Best Physique Billy Speed; Wittiest, Ann Yates and Joe Barton; Best Personalities, Joan Richardson and Lawrence Wall; Biggest Flirts, Claude Rainer and Billy Blackwell; Best All-Round, Ardis Powers and Ben Crane; Most School-Spirited Joan Richardson and Lawrence Wall; Best Athletes, Sarah Alice Green and Charles Smith; and Best Citizen, Miriam Day.