Moline Memories - MHS 66 Friends

Saturday, August 31, 2013

Toby McGriff, MHS 66, Has Been Confined to Hospitals and Nursing Homes for the Last Two Years

Toby and Stephanie McGriff.

Mhs '66ers. We have a classmate Toby McGriff, who has been in a nursing home for 2 years. He is at Riverwood Nursing Home and rehab 430-30th ave East Moline 61244. He has not been able to go home since July of 2011.

He suffered a spinal cord injury due to osteo-myelitis eating away at his 5th, 6th & 7 thoracic vertebrae . He was unable to walk for a long time but now can do so with a walker. 

He is also getting ready for cataract surgery.  Let's send him cards and if possible, go visit him.  I will update when I get his room number and a phone number. Thanks to all of you who take this to heart and let him know he is not forgotten. Once a Maroon, always a Maroon. Go MHS class of '66.

Kym Dennhardt Whatley


GJ - Thank you, Kym, our Sunshine Committee Chair, for the detailed update. Some of us just heard from Toby on Facebook and did not know all this.

The Maroon band was quite a group, with a lot of friendships. Toby used to give me rides home in his tiny Corvair. Once we were halfway home when I realized that I drove that day. Toby had to turn around in the 23rd Avenue traffic and get me back. 

I second the motion to write, phone (check with Kym), and visit. Nothing helps recuperation more than the personal touch.

Wedding Anniversaries for MHS 66ers

Tim (MHS 66) and Joyce Ballard - 43 years.
Ron Lindberg and Marilyn Rue (MHS 66), 41 years.

Ann Irwin (MHS 66) Cunningham and her husband just celebrated their 43rd anniversary, but I do not have a photo of them. If I get one, I will post it here.

Class of 66 - I try to post all the anniversary photos. If I miss one from our class, let me know. Thanks.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

We Thanked Our Classmate and Vietnam Vet for His Service to the Country

Dennis McGimpsey and Family

Dennis McGimpsey
Today is a very special day for me. Through the amazing generosity of my class of `66 classmates, friends, family, and I understand, even strangers, I have had a brand new full sized bed, (mattress, boxsprings, and frame), delivered to my apartment today. I am humbled and pretty much overwhelmed by this act of kindness by so many people who have donated their time and hard earned monies. I don`t know of all that has contributed, but I do know of one person that has done so much in getting me this bed, and her name is, Jorja Hepner Beert. She`s a Moline classmate of mine who organized all of this. So to her and all the rest of you folks, I would like to say, Thank You so much for showing love and compassion toward me and I will never, ever forget this. Only one last thing to say... no more sleeping in the recliner, YES! Love you ALL. Dennis

To tell the truth, Princess Kym ordered us into action
threatening that she would come to Moline and kick some butt.

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Jane (Ward) Diericx - Rest in Peace.

Jane Diericx

Posted Online: Aug. 23, 2013, 5:19 pm
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Jane Kathleen Diericx, 65, of Rockton, Ill., formerly of Geneseo, passed away Thursday, Aug. 22, 2013, at her home.
A funeral Mass celebrating her life will be held at 10:30 a.m. Monday, Aug. 26, at St. Malachy's Catholic Church, Geneseo. Burial will follow at St. Anthony's Cemetery, Atkinson. Visitation for Jane will be 5 to 8 p.m. Sunday at Vandemore Funeral Homes, Atkinson, where a scripture service will be held at 7:45 p.m. Memorials may be made to Jane Diericx Memorial Fund.

Jane was born Feb. 25, 1948, in Galesburg, daughter of Winfred and Frances Bergstrom Ward. She graduated from Geneseo High School in 1966 and from Augustana College in 1970 with a degree in secondary education. She was united in marriage to Dennis Diericx on Jan. 30, 1971, in Geneseo.
Jane started her teaching career at Orion High School in the fall of 1970, teaching English. Jane then taught in Lincoln, Ill., from 1972 to 1977. She later taught at Rockridge High School. Jane and Denny returned to Geneseo, where she was a substitute teacher and was the Youth Program Director at St. Malachy's Church for 10 years. Jane and Denny lived in Geneseo from 1983 to 2005.

She was a member of St. Peters Church in South Beloit, Ill., and a former member of St. Malachy's Catholic Church in Geneseo. Jane enjoyed her family, friends, walking, reading and traveling.
Survivors include her husband, Denny; a son, Brad (Yvette) Diericx, Wheaton, Ill.; a daughter, Amy Diericx, Chicago; three grandchildren, Cameron, Luke and Shane Diericx; a sister, Mary Williamsen, Geneseo. She was preceded in death by her parents and grandson, Kyle.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

MHS 66ers Take Lead in Getting a Vet Some Comfortable Sleep

Dennis McGimpsey, right, with family members.

I am getting great response for donations for the bed for Dennis McGimpsey (MHS class of"66/ Vietnam Vet,  has NO bed and needs one to sleep and recover) . I got a deal form a store in Moline . I'm going tomorrow to finalize the deal and get arrangements made for delivery. Accepting any amount to h help pay for it. No amount too small. IF we collect more than cost -- rest will go to a grocery store card to help him buy groceries. 

Friends - anyone can donate. Message Jorja Beert on Facebook and she will give the address. She has made the arrangements.

Jorja and Kym Dennhardt Whatley got this going. Thanks, ladies. This is a great way to honor a Vietnam vet.

Sunday, August 18, 2013

MHS 66ers Were Golfing at Byron Hills

Dave Henriksen, Jerry Cosner, Paul McIntosh, and Jim Medd golfed at Byron Hills recently.

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Viet Nam War Memorial in Geneseo

August 05, 2013 1:15 am  •  

Welcome vets in Geneseo Wednesday

To all Vietnam veterans, I would like to thank each of you for serving our country. When the Traveling Wall comes into Geneseo at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 7, I hope everyone is out with flags flying to welcome it. It will be escorted into town by the Patriot Guard and many other groups. It will be open from noon that Thursday until 3 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 11.
The men and women who served during Vietnam were treated in a way that disgusts me. Our government sent these young men over to fight a war. Many were drafted. Most of them went when called, and were treated badly for doing what our government ordered them to do.
I hope you will join me in doing everything you can to say thank you and welcome home to every Vietnam veteran you see in the coming months. At 1 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 10 we are having a Welcome Home Vietnam Era Veteran’s Parade,
Following the parade will be a Welcome Home Celebration in the park. You will be treated in a way you should have been 50 years ago. If you are family of or were friends with one of the men or women whose name is on the wall and you would like to share a story about them come to the park at 1 p.m. Sunday, August 11. At 2 p.m. we will have a memorial service, prior to the wall coming down.

Vietnam War Memorial seeking photos of fallen:

May 28, 2012 12:17 am  •  

Quad-City area Vietnam War veterans are working to notify families whose loved ones’ names are etched on the Vietnam Veterans Memorial that photos and stories of their kin are needed for a new state-of-the-art learning and visitors center that will teach future generations about the conflict.
One of the veterans helping spread the word is Lyle Peterson, 63, of Bettendorf, who said the learning and visitors center, to be called The Education Center at The Wall, will be built by the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund. Because of its design, the Vietnam memorial is often referred to as The Wall.
“They want photos of all the men and women whose names are on The Wall,” Peterson said. “They want to get a picture to go with every name on The Wall. It will be a living memorial.
“As time goes by, the names on The Wall are not going to mean as much as the pictures, and I think what they’re doing makes a lot of sense.”
Stories written about those loved ones are welcome, too, he said.
Lee Allen, the communications director for the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund, said the education center will be built in Washington, D.C., between the Vietnam and Lincoln memorials.
“We are looking for photos, and we are looking for remembrances,” he said.
“We’ve almost accumulated 30,000 pictures,” he continued. “We’re over halfway on the picture collections,” which began in 2008.
There are 58,282 names on the Vietnam Veterans Memorial of men and women who were killed in the war or who remain missing in action.
The education center will have digital displays of the photographs of the fallen, Allen said. The center also will act, for a time, as the repository for information and as the memorial for veterans of the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq until an actual memorial for them can be built, he added.
The center is important because future generations need to be able to learn about Vietnam, and so that the men and women who died there never will be forgotten, Peterson said.
‘Number coming up’
Peterson was 20 when he was drafted in 1969. He said he was working in Rochelle, Ill., after having studied agricultural business at Joliet Junior College. He was raised on a farm near Lynn Center, Ill.
“I knew my number was coming up,” he said of being drafted. “When I didn’t continue with college, I knew my number would come up.”
Peterson said little about his experiences in Vietnam.
He went there as a light weapons infantryman attached to the 196th Light Infantry Brigade of the 23rd Infantry Division, also known as the Americal Division.
He arrived in Vietnam Aug. 9, 1969. After about a week of training, he was out in the field.
“Within a few days, it was hot and heavy,” he said of the initial battles in which he found himself. But then, he added, it cooled down.
“We could go six to eight weeks and just be doing our daily routine,” Peterson said. “But when it hit, the enemy ran the show. They always knew where we were, but we didn’t know where they were.
“That would last for a few days.”
Peterson spent a year in Vietnam. His mother kept all of the letters he wrote home.
“They all say the same thing: ‘I’m doing fine. I’m OK.’ ”
Like most veterans, he is adamant that he not be portrayed or referred to as a hero.
“I went, I did my job and I came home,” Peterson said. And, he readily admits, he was “scared to death.”
A lot of hurt, both physical and emotional, came out of the Vietnam War, which is one reason he and others are trying so hard to see that the educational center becomes a success.
$40 million needed
Allen said donations are needed for the project.
“We’ve got about $40 million left to raise,” he said. “We fully intend to do that by Veterans Day this year and break ground.”
Doing so this year has significance since the Vietnam Veterans Memorial was built in 1982, making this its 30th anniversary, Allen said.
It will take about two years to build the center, he added.
“The Wall has been a big part of America’s healing from the Vietnam War,” he said. “It has really been the wall that heals, and its healing power can’t be denied.
“But the addition of the education center will bring this beyond healing and begin informing,” he added. “The Wall is powerful just in terms of the names, but that’s also a weakness.
“Over 40 percent of the visitors to The Wall are younger than The Wall itself,” he said. “While it’s very moving and very powerful, it begs lots and lots of questions.
“We want to bring those names back to life and tell who these heroes were,” he said. “We want to bring them back to life in the minds of future generations.
“These warriors should never, and will never, be forgotten.”

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