• 73°

Jaycees, Jaycettes service recalled

This week we are taking a look at some news from 1954 and 1955.

In 1955, the Atmore Jaycees and Jaycettes were recognized for outstanding service to the community. One of their most popular fund raising drives was gathering funds for the underprivileged Christmas shopping tour.

Many young children were taken to participating merchants where they shopped free with hearts delight due to efforts of these two fine organizations.

Jaycee officers that year were George Keenan, Sam Ford, Taylor Faircloth, Robert Faircloth, James Forte, Robert Maxwell and Elam Fayard.

The Jaycettes officers were Virginia Ford, Ernestine Miniard, Thelma Pitts, Janelle Forte, Billy Gilbert and Sarah Fayard.

Two ECHS students were selected to attend Boy’s State at the University of Alabama. They were Bobby Barnes and Gordon Bryars. Sponsors of the two, respectively, were American Legion Post #90 and Atmore Lions Club.

Sam Jack Cassidy received an honor for accomplishments as a member of the Crimson Tide football team. The former star ECHS running back was on scholarship at the Capstone.

J. Whisinant, well known principal at Escambia County Training School, resigned from his position for a promotional move with the Anniston School System.

In 1954, after returning from a Camp Stewart training excursion, the Atmore National Guard unit gave a letter of appreciation to Roy “Red” Powell for his many years of service. A corporal in the Guard, he was regarded as “do it all” type. He was particular talented in woodworking and repairing items necessary to the operation. Commanding Officer Lt. Mason Montgomery stated “Cpl. Powell literally kept our unit in tack.” “If we had a break down or needed something built in a hurry Red would take care of it, he was just that good,” he added.

Other officers in the unit included, Lts. Nathan Little, James H. Shirley and Charles D Bryan.

Roy Kinard from Silverhill brought in the first bale of Cotton. It was processed at Curries Gin.

Longtime local Alabama Power Company head Murray Greer was promoted to a more elevated position and moved to Eufaula at a higher company headquarters. Tommy Hand took over at the local office following Greer’s promotion.

Several from here traveled to Montgomery that year to attend a statewide celebration in memory of Alabama native Hank Williams. Portions of that celebration were carried live over many radio stations across the nation. WATM carried that broadcast.

The Advance featured a story and photo of a huge Bobcat, which was killed near the homes of northwest Florida’s Lewis and J.D. Long. The Longs said their dogs “treed” the cat in a very tall tree. Members of the community reportedly came by to get a look at it on display near their homes.

According to the latest Census figures, the population of Huntsville is growing close to the population of Mobile.

There was a difference of about 15,000 per a report carried last week on the WKRG Web site.

Now, I wonder what would happen to the numbering on the state car license plates had Huntsville passed Mobile in population. Right now Mobile is the third largest city behind Birmingham and Montgomery.

For those of you who have followed the EADS vs. Boeing Tanker Contract, it really came as no surprise that Boeing came out the winner.

Alabama Senator Richard Shelby, an avid backer of EADS, said Chicago politics played a large role in the outcome according to a report by “POLITICO” following the announcement last week.

After Shelby made those remarks, I am reminded of a current CBS weekly TV show “The Good Wife.” Chicago is depicted as the base of operation for that show and that city’s politics is reflected in many episodes. You get the impression Chicago does things differently than some other cities.

Now, here we are after two attempts and have lost it both times.

As I write this column on Monday, I don’t know if EADS will protest the decision. If they do it will be quite a while before Boeing can go forth with their building the planes.

Have you noticed the colorful Blimp has not been seen at its anchoring site at Wind Creek? For several months it soared over the Atmore area and several other cities in the southland.

If there had been news releases concerning the blimp’s whereabouts I apparently missed them.

During its initial flights news reports from several states mentioned the blimp. Not that it is really important, but someone brought up the subject at a recent coffee session.

“…yes, it always whispers to me….those days of long ago…”.

Next week we have more news from 1954.

Lowell McGill is a historical columnist for The Atmore Advance. He can be reached at exam@frontiernet.net