Tuesday, July 21, 2009

54 Years And Counting

This is our Wedding Portrait taken for our wedding July 22, 1955. Who are these young kids?

On July 22, 2009, Ann and I will celebrate our 54th wedding anniversary. This is a special one as it followed our 53rd anniversary! They are all special!

When we started out together on July 22, 1955, we had no idea how long the union would last -- no one does. You just go one year at a time and before you know it 54 of them have come and gone. We are very fortunate to have a marriage that has lasted this long. So many don’t. Some end by death of one of the partners, some end in divorce. Since divorce wasn’t an option when we signed on for this ride, the other reason will have to do.

It’s been an interesting trip. On our 25th anniversary in 1980 we took our first cruise. One to Alaska on “The Love Boat” - the Pacific Princess. We’ve taken 8 more cruises since then. Our last one in June 2008 with our daughter’s family on the Disney Cruise Lines to the Mexican Riviera.

On our 50th anniversary, we took the entire family back to Oklahoma to visit relatives on both sides of the union. Rick, Anne, Emily & Eric Moore. Scott, Brenda, Hannah, and Rachel Ostrander. It was a wonderful time. I’m so glad we did it.

Anniversaries are special. We plan on celebrating as many as the good Lord gives us.

Happy Anniversary, Ann. I’m glad you included me in your life.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Back To My Roots - The Daily Standard - Part 7

This is the last of a multi part story of our quick trip to Ohio in June. If you haven’t read the other parts, do so now before this one. That way you will read in order. Thanks.

When I was 9 years old I moved to Celina and soon was offered a paper route with The Daily Standard. I kept that job for 6 years leaving it 60 years ago in September of this year. I was 15 years of age then and moved to Kansas City to live with my Uncle Ray and Aunt Edith Moore. As mentioned earlier, Grandmother was failing in health and I needed another place to live for my last three years of high school.

Since I lived at my uncles and aunts parents home, they came back to see their parents as often as they could. Ray and Edith were there in August of 1949 along with their 18 month old daughter, Kathy, and wrote me a letter after they got home asking me to consider coming to their home to live. I still have that letter in my memory box. That was a big decision and one that had to be made quickly. Grandpa said the decision was mine. Whatever I decide was fine with him.

When I decided to take them up on the offer I had to resign from my paper route and turn it over to my substitute Bob Stein. Bob had subbed for me a number of times over the years and was familiar with the route. I don’t know how long he kept it. I also had to resign from my janitor job at the newspaper office. I asked Parker Snyder for a letter of recommendation and he gave me a nice one. I still have it in my memories. Leaving Celina and the newspaper was very hard for me. Practically all my memories were tied up in both of these places.

My paper route was 150 customers and I delivered six days a week. We didn’t have a Sunday paper then. To my surprise, they still do not issue a Sunday paper. I remember collecting each Saturday morning 20 cents for the week from each customer. Sometimes I would be paid $1 for 5 weeks and had to budget my money paying the bill each week. I took good care of my customers delivering their paper to the porch or behind the screen door in bad weather. Rarely got a missed paper call. In fact, I don’t recall one. Christmas was very good to me as many customers would give me extra money or a gift that a boy would enjoy having as a gift.

When this trip came up I knew I wanted to visit the newspaper office as they have built on twice to the original building. I wrote an email to the paper telling them who I was and that I was taking a trip back to my roots. I worked for Parker Snyder who was the owner publisher at that time. The newspaper was family owned. I didn’t know who would be in charge now but I asked them for a tour of the buildings for Brenda and myself and an interview with a reporter. I felt there was a story in our trip back there that they might want to publish. I received an email response from Frank Snyder who is Parker’s son and the current publisher. Frank has a sister and a brother also working at the office. I got to meet his sister but not his brother. Frank said his family would meet us with someone from the news staff. I made arrangements with them to come over around 8:00 a.m. on Monday June 15th which was our last day in Celina.

We arrive at the office at 8:15 a.m. and were graciously met by Frank Snyder and his sister. I brought my autobiography which had a picture of the The Daily Standard newsboys taken behind the original building. Also an article from Reminisce magazine that I submitted concerning the April 12, 1945 issue of The Daily Standard which was the only paper I kept during my 6 years as a carrier. This was the day that President Roosevelt died and Harry Truman became president. Someone in Celina read the magazine article and took it down to the paper in 2002. On the front page of February 8, 2002 issue of the paper there is a story about me and the article in Reminisce.

I also gave them a couple of music solo recordings that I made in recent years as a gift for their time.

Frank then took Brenda and me for a tour of the buildings. When we got to the old original part I was telling him what were in certain rooms at the time I was there. I could see them in my mind and he was impressed that I could remember so well. I told him about his dad’s office and the collection counter and the line-o-type machines on the next floor up. This was the area that I kept clean during my last year with the company. I earned 50 cents an hour doing that! The old press room is storage now and the line-o-type room holds the archives of the papers issued each year going back many years. We toured the new press room and a picture of that is below. I mentioned that the newspaper boys had a room where we prepared the papers for delivery and he showed us the room. On the outside wall I had taken a picture of four of my fellow carriers with my Ansco Box Camera.

I told Mr. Snyder that I was about to learn how to drive on the 1948 Studebaker pick up truck so I could deliver papers to nearby towns to carriers that would home deliver them. He said that is a job he did when he got started with the company. I moved before I could have that opportunity but his dad really wanted me to do it.

Frank turned me over to Betty Lawrence who is a reporter and has been with the newspaper for 41 years. She knew Parker very well and we talked about him. Parker liked me and kept giving me jobs. Betty spent a lot of time talking to me and taking notes. We went outside for pictures by their staff photographer. The article and picture appeared in the June 19, 2009 issue of the paper on page 3. If you would like a copy, just ask. I don’t have room here to write it out for you. Betty did a nice professional job with the story.

Brenda and I left after doing a video of remembrances outside the building. That was included in my DVD that Brenda and Scott did for me of the entire trip. We left about 10:15 a.m. and headed West to Indianapolis. We allowed plenty of time for the trip to the airport and found that we would be able to meet my brother Bob for lunch around Muncie. I called him and arranged for lunch at the Cracker Barrel in a town near Muncie. Bob, Mary Lou and their son, Bobby had lunch with Brenda and myself. One more time to get together. Since we didn’t do a video remembrance when we were with them on Friday evening and Saturday morning we took the time to do it after lunch. So they are included in the DVD as well.

After lunch it was on the road again for the airport. Turn in the rental car and check in for the flight to Dallas and on to Santa Ana. We had smooth flights coming and going. One reason on the way back was the pilot went between two large storms altering his normal route.

This concludes the stories of the trip. We had a wonderful time and something I will never forget. Thank you Brenda for the idea and flight plans. I made up the itinerary as to where we would go. We worked together very well.

Hope you enjoyed the trip. I did.

We woke up to this scene of sunrise over Grand Lake. This was taken from our room.

Dick standing in front of the new office of The Daily Standard.

This is the original part of the building. The bricked in part behind my head was the original door to the building. The window is the original office where Parker Snyder worked.

Dick with Frank Snyder and his sister. Looking at my book and recordings.

The current press room. Quite different from what I remember.

Dick being interviewed by Betty Lawrence, reporter.

Dick and Brenda in front of the newspaper office. This is the picture that they used in the paper with my story.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Back To My Roots - Sunday Afternoon Tour - Part 6

Once again - this is a many part posting of the trip to Celina taken June 12, 2009 through June 15, 2009. If you haven’t read the other parts, do so now and be caught up to date. OK?

When I emailed Karl Allmandinger that I was coming to Celina with my daughter, Brenda, he responded that he would be happy to be the driver for a tour of the city and allow us to take pictures of the various places we visited. So after church Sunday morning, we met with Karl and had lunch with him first at a place he likes to visit. Karl picked up the tab on this one. It was a buffet and had everything you’d want to try. Of course, we tried a lot of entries and was ready for an afternoon nap but had many places to visit first.

When I originally planned this trip I knew I wanted to have the family at home see us on the Celina Web Cam at the corner of Market and Main Streets. We did that when we arrived on Saturday afternoon but I had scheduled on my BLOG a 2:00 p.m. Ohio time Sunday appearance for family and friends. So first off would be the web cam appearance. Carl drove us there and people told me that they saw the car drive up and three people get out. Of course we were pretty small on the screen at home but Brenda, Karl and I waved to the camera while talking on the phone to home. Then someone on the phone at home suggested we cross the street and get closer to the camera to allow those watching a better view of the three of us. So we did. Both pictures taken off the internet by our son Rick are below.

Two of the three schools I attended from 1943 to 1949 were torn down and the land was used for other purposes. The schools were replaced and we were amazed at the beautiful schools that replaced all the buildings I once knew. A new K-4 Elementary School replaced The West Building which had 1-4 grades when I lived there. I attended 4th grade only at the West Building. It was a few blocks from the parsonage where I lived. The Celina Mutual Group Insurance Company now occupies the entire one block square where the West Building once occupied.

We drove to the location where East Building was located which had grades 5 and 6. That is now a church location. A new Intermediate School for 5-6 has been built at a different location. The Junior High (7,8,9) was located in the High School (10,11,12) building. We were two different schools located within the same building. A different principal for each school. I attended all three grades of Junior High before moving to Kansas City to finish high school. That building has been replace with a Middle School (7-8) and a new High School (9-12). The former High School building still exists but is used for school offices and a Head Start School. A picture of the old high school is below.
We next located the first house that I lived in which was the parsonage since grandpa was the pastor of the Nazarene Church. This was at the corner of Warren and Sugar. A brick building that was old when we lived there 1943 to 1946. I don’t believe that anyone lived there for many years as it appears to be in pretty bad shape outside. A closer look through the windows showed us that the building was being remodeled inside with walls being moved, new electrical unit on the back to supply the building, a small section of the original building taken out and a new part being built. Quite a remodel and I expect the wood on the outside of the house will be replaced in time. I think maybe a lawyer’s office will be there some day soon.

The second home was at 630 Brandon Avenue. I lived there from 1946 until I left in 1949. Grandpa had to buy another home since he retired from active preaching and was living in the parsonage that belonged to the church. This was another old house. Had only cold water to the kitchen, no bathroom (used a little house out back) but a large home on a large lot. One of the first things he did was to install a bathroom where the pantry was off the kitchen and get hot water. Our heating stove was in the dining/front room and used coal which had to be brought in from the garage a half city block away from the house. Good thing he had two grandsons to do that job! Before hot water and a bathroom with shower, the Saturday Night Bath ritual was done in the kitchen using hot water off the stove.

This home had a large upstairs section which was turned into a bedroom for Ben and I and a guest room. The rest of the upstairs was remodeled as an apartment that was rented out to help with expenses. Before that could be done a kitchen, bathroom, outside entrance with stairs had to be built. Grandpa was very handy in doing anything like that and did the work himself. In the pictures below of this house as we saw it in June shows the outside door on the second level but no stairs! They apparently rotted away and were removed. The door remains. Someone was living there at the time and I wanted to see if we could get in to see the house but nobody answered the door.

Both houses I lived in had a “front room or parlor” that wasn’t used in the winter. That room was closed off and the heat turned off in those rooms during the cold months to conserve heat and keep costs down. Of course, no homes at that time had air conditioning so all rooms were open for air ventilation during the summer.

On the same property grandpa built a small house for himself after I had left Celina. Grandmother had passed away the following year and he didn’t want to live in the big house much longer. That new home is sitting on ground that I used to mow. Right next to it at the alley is the original garage that I used to put my bike, motorbike and motor scooter. Ben also had a motor bike and his was kept there too. We didn’t use the garage for the car then. Grandpa had machine equipment in there. I was surprised to find the garage had survived all the years. Probably not for much longer.

After the tour of Celina, Karl took us back to his home and served us the biggest bowl of ice cream I’ve ever had! After that, we said our goodbyes as we were leaving Celina in the morning after our visit to The Daily Standard where I used to work as a news boy and janitor. That story coming up.

We went back to the West Bank Inn to get some rest and then over to an Italian place on the grounds for dinner. It was right across the highway from the Spillway which was new since I lived there. This keeps the water level and avoids floods. It was interesting to see the birds sitting on top of the spillway looking for fish that fell over. I thought they were fake but they flew away after a while. The birds were evenly spaced around the semi circle of the top of the spillway.

On our way back to the Inn I saw a cream colored old Buick convertible coming our way. It was Whitey! He wanted to show us his other Buick and knew we would be leaving in the morning. So we got another ride and some time to chat with Whitey.

We had a full and interesting day. One more day on this trip as tomorrow it is a quick stop with the newspaper office and then off to Indianapolis for our trip home.

Karl Allmandinger at home. I regret that I got only one picture of Karl. He was our tour guide for Sunday afternoon. I've known Karl since school days there.

Celina Web Cam at the corner of Market and Main. The three people you see in the lower right corner is Dick, Karl and Brenda.

This is a close up of the three of us taken off the internet. Dick, Karl and Brenda.

Brenda talking to home during the web cam appearance.

The old Celina High School building. I attended 7, 8, and 9 grades there.

The Celina Bulldogs football stadium behind the old high school. Saw many football games there.

Dick next to the parsonage at Warner and Sugar Streets. The upstairs corner was Ben and my room.

Back of parsonage. Note the new construction with new electrical unit. I used to mow that yard.

This is a winter picture of the Brandon house as I remember it. Grandpa's new house was built on the yard that I used to mow!

Brandon house as it appears today. Needs a lot of work. I would expect it to be torn down and replaced with a modern home sometime soon.

Side view of the Brandon house. Note the upstairs door with no stairs! Also stone steps going nowhere.

Grandpa's new home he built on the property. I've never seen it before.

The original garage that I used 61 years ago. We had a half city block lot. The garage is on the alley.

Cousins Norman Reynolds and Dave Ummel on my Whizzer Motor Bike in 1948. Note the garage behind them and Ben's motor bike.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Back To My Roots - Celina Church of the Nazarene - Part 5

This is the Nazarene Church building that I remember. Taken in 1948.

As stated before , this is a multi part posting of our trip To Ohio. If you haven’t read the other parts, do so now so you will be caught us with all of us.

When I lived in Celina from 1943 to 1949, I attended the local Church of the Nazarene -- why? Because my grandfather was the pastor and I lived with my grandparents! The picture above is the building as I remembered it. A current picture of the building follows this article.

The last time I was in this building was during the summer of 1952 after I graduated from high school. I took a trip in my brother’s car that he left with me when he was overseas in the Navy. I stopped in Muncie, IN to pick up my younger brother Bob who was living with our mother there. He was 12 or 13 at the time. Together we drove over to Celina to visit Grandpa and attend the church on Sunday. Grandma had passed away a couple of years earlier. In the morning service we were introduced as Rev. Moore’s grandsons. After the service the pastor came by to see me and I have written about that encounter before. It is also included in the “talk” I gave the church which is below.

It was 57 years later that we took this current trip to Ohio to revisit my roots. I found the church’s email address on the web and wrote to the pastor. I didn’t know his name or how long he had been the pastor. I gave him all my history of that church and told him my daughter Brenda and I would be in their Sunday morning service June 14th. I asked if I could address his congregation to let them know what had happened to me in the years since my last visit and what an impact this church had made on my life.

I received an email response back from Dr. Larry Hamilton. He said he was going to be gone that week prior to our visit to attend the District Assembly and that he would be back for Sunday. He didn’t respond to my request. Just said he was looking forward to meeting me and my daughter.

On Sunday morning we arrived at the church during Sunday School and looked around. The pastor was busy with a class and we would have to wait to see him. We had time to go over to the Sugar Street building (the old church building) and took pictures and video there. I showed Brenda where we used to farm the land next to the church and the story about raising cane. You can read that story here. The building has changed some as they took off the front entrance and made it a side entrance. I didn’t get inside the building to see what they had done to it. Would have liked to but didn’t have time then. We found out that the church membership relocated to another building between the old one and the current one which was built in 1981.
We returned to the new location for the service and met the pastor just before the service was to begin. He gave me the order of service which included an item named “Testimony”. That was where I would talk to the congregation. That was the first Brenda heard about it and asked if she could video this part of the service. The pastor said yes and she got the video camera. She included the entire talk in the special DVD that she and her husband Scott made for me of the "Trip Back To My Roots”.

When it came to my part in the program, the pastor gave an introduction of who I was and when I was a part of that church membership. I took the platform and was concerned if I would be able to deliver the two pages I had typed. If I couldn’t, Brenda would have to finish it for me. Fortunately, I was able to get through all of it without coughing. I’m including the two pages in this posting which makes it a long one but one in which you can see why I wanted to deliver it. I told them about the reason for the trip and that currently there was no cure for what I have with my lungs. I told them I needed the Lord to heal me.

Following the message by the pastor, he pulled out a small bottle of oil from his pocket and said that he didn’t know why the Lord asked him to take this to the service but he now knows -- to anoint and pray over Dick Moore! We had a healing service which included a couple others that came forward. As you can imagine, this brought tears to my eyes and to Brenda’s. Whether the Lord wants to heal me or not is up to Him. But all of us were faithful to His Will.

After the service several came up to talk to me remembering my grandparents. This was a good way to start off Sunday.

Talk given to Celina Church of the Nazarene, June 14, 2009

Thank you, Pastor for allowing me this time to talk to your church. My daughter, Brenda Ostrander, is with me on this trip.

I was an active member of this church from 1943 to 1949. Part of this time my grandfather, Rev. J. Irwin Moore, was pastor. He retired from active preaching in 1946 and moved out of the parsonage. We had to buy our own home which was located at 630 Brandon Avenue. Grandpa moved from being pastor to being the janitor. So I was still involved in keeping the church clean and the yard mowed. The church allowed us to farm the land around it and we raised a lot of our own food. I told people we were able to raise cane behind the church and get away with it.

I have a box of “Celina” things and found these two certificates from this time. The pastor then was H. J. Maish. Alva Keifer was the father of my best friend, Tom Keifer and his brother Dick Keifer who used to be your treasurer. Harlow Fetters and I shared the same month and day for our birthdays.

In September 1949 I moved to Kansas City Missouri to live with my Uncle Ray and Aunt Edith Moore because grandmother’s health was failing. Ray was the music director for the “headquarters” church - First Church of the Nazarene. I attended my last three years of high school in Kansas City. Upon graduation from high school, I took a trip back to Celina to visit my grandfather one more time before leaving for college at Pasadena Nazarene College in California. Grandmother had passed away in 1950. Grandpa lived to be 101 years and 11 months old.

This church started me on my way to living a Christian life. And in 1952 it started me on my way of singing solos in church. That is an interesting story -- "I was introduced in the church as Rev. Moore’s grandson. The present pastor and I had never met. He came up to me after church and asked if I would sing a solo in the evening service. I had never sung a solo in church! I had done so in youth group in KC but never in church. The pastor had guessed that since my name was Moore and there are a number of singers in the Moore family that I could do it too. I figured there probably won’t be 50 people here that night so I agreed to work something up. I was talking to Helen Howell who used to be my brother, Ben’s, girlfriend. The pastor knew that Helen sang and asked us to do a duet also. We looked at each other and said why not. Then he asked me if I would lead the singing for the evening service. I asked him if he wanted me to preach also -- he said “Could you?” No I can’t preach so he had to do that."

I graduated from PNC in 1956. Was married July 22, 1955 to Ann Edwards who lived down the street from my home in KC. Spent my working life at State Farm Insurance in management retiring in 1996 with 37 years of service.

I have spent my life in churches and been actively involved in their music programs in choirs, quartets, duets, and solos. In 1971 I helped form the Watchmen Gospel Quartet which traveled around the state singing southern gospel music. I was with them for 11 years. The quartet continued with my partner and they just retired at the end of 2008. They were in to their 38th year of singing the gospel.

I have planned this trip many times over the years and couldn’t find the time to take it. It’s been 57 years since my last visit. Recently I have been diagnosed with Ideopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis - a lung disease, for which at this time there is no cure. I would appreciate your prayers for a miracle healing by the Great Physician. My daughter Brenda said it was time for that long awaited trip back to my roots. She planned it for this weekend and I told her we had to come to Celina Church of the Nazarene even though it is in a different building.

My wife and Brenda’s mother is handicapped and unable to travel so she is at home. We have our 54th wedding anniversary coming up next month. We also have a son, Rick Moore and each of our children have two children of their own. Rick and Anne have Emily and Eric - Brenda and Scott have Hannah and Rachel.

Thank you for allowing me to share my story. If you would like to read more about my life, you can visit my web site where I am writing my memories for my family. You can read it too! Ask me for a card with the web site address.

This is the "old Sugar Street Nazarene Church " building.

Dr. Larry Hamilton, Pastor and Dick Moore

Present Celina Church of the Nazarene opened in 1981.

Pastor Larry Hamilton and wife with Dick Moore.

Sign by the road announcing the services.

Dick talking to the Nazarene congregation.

Another picture taken during his talk.

Dick showing the certificates he kept from 1948 for attendance and promotion.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Back To My Roots - Norman "Whitey" Klosterman - Part 4

This is a many part story of my recent trip back to my home town of Celina, Ohio. If you haven’t read the other parts, please do so now. Then you will be caught up with the rest of us!

Have you ever met someone that you were immediately friends with and felt that you have known them a long time? That is what happened when Brenda and I met “Whitey”.

On Saturday afternoon June 13, 2009, we were walking on Market Street heading for the corner of Market and Main. I noticed an old car going our direction and waved to the driver. He waved back. I caught up with him at the corner and asked him what year was this Buick? He said “it’s a 1946 and I am going to park around the corner. I want to talk to you”. So Brenda and I turn the corner and find Whitey in the alley with his 1946 Buick 4 door sedan. It is a stick shift straight 8 beauty. We met and instantly felt that we had known each other in the past. We hadn’t but felt like it. Both of us were born in 1934 - graduated high school 1952 and are now 75 years old. Whitey graduated from Coldwater High School which was about 5 miles from Celina. I would have been in the 1952 Celina High School graduation if I had stayed there but moved in 1949 to Kansas City where I graduated from Southeast High School.

After a while of admiring his car he asked if we would like a ride in it. YES! And off we went to take a tour of the area. I asked him if he knows where the West Bank Inn is as we were to check in there for the next two days. He did and proceeded to take us there so we will know how to get there later. Great tour and conversation. We told him why we were there in Celina and that our stay would end on Monday morning. I told him we would be visiting the Celina Church of the Nazarene on Sunday morning and he said he lived right next door to the church. He has another old Buick he wanted to show us and we could stop by after church. We didn’t have his address and didn’t see signs of the cars so we thought that we would not have a chance to see his second car.

On Sunday evening Brenda and I had dinner in a restaurant that uses the same parking lot as our motel. After dinner, we walked across the highway to see the Spillway which controls the water level in the lake. Interesting watching the birds catch fish there. Then we started back to our room and here comes a cream convertible towards our motel. It was Whitey! He had to show us the car. It was a 1948 Buick Convertible also with a straight 8 engine. This one was an automatic. I told Whitey he can’t get by just showing me this car -- we needed a ride in it too. So we got a ride in his convertible.

It seems that everyone in the town knows Whitey and are calling out to him as we were driving along. Brenda and I felt like celebrities and started waving back when someone waved and called “Whitey”. Another fun ride! What makes this even more interesting is that cars that were new in 1946 and 1948 were new cars when I lived in Celina!

We chatted for a while and shook hands telling each other that we were glad that we had the chance to meet. Whitey and I exchanged addresses and phone numbers for later contact. All three of us had a tear in our eyes when we parted.

That was on Sunday night. On Friday I got a call at home on my answering machine and it was Whitey. He opened the local paper The Daily Standard and there on page 3 was his two new friends. I called him back and talked for a while. The story about the article will be coming in a later posting.

Whitey is one in a million. You know you like him the moment you meet him. I had only one friend in Celina that I knew of and that was Karl Allmandinger. Now I have two!

Whitey's 1946 Buick when we first saw it at Market and Main Streets.

Dick and Whitey with his 1946 Buick in the alley.

Dick in the 1946 Buick ready for a ride and a tour of Celina and Grand Lake.

Whitey and Dick with his 1948 Buick Convertible by Grand Lake.

Whitey's 1948 Buick Convertible at West Bank Inn on Sunday 6-14-09.

Brenda sitting in the back of the 1948 Buick Convertible. After our ride by Grand Lake.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Back To My Roots - Return To Celina Ohio - Part 3

This is a many part series that I am writing about a quick trip to Ohio to return to my roots. If you haven’t read the other items, please do so now before you get into this story.

June 13th started in Muncie, Indiana with breakfast with my brother Bob and his wife Mary Lou. Then off to Troy, Ohio to visit Riverside Cemetery and pay respects to my dad and my grandparents.

Then came the short trip to Celina, Ohio where I spent my youth from age 9 to 15 years of age. On our way from Troy we drove through Piqua which is where I was born. Celina has always been considered my home town. I left there in September 1949 to move to Kansas City, Missouri to live with my Uncle Ray and Aunt Edith Moore for my last three years of high school. I returned to Celina a couple times - once for a family reunion while grandma was still alive in 1950 and then later that year for her funeral service.

The last time I visited Celina was just after high school graduation in 1952. I have made many plans to come back to Celina but none ever matured. Then with a diagnosis of Ideopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis, my daughter said “enough dreaming about going back -- let’s go now!” So this quick trip to this area was hurriedly planned and we packed a lot into four days.

With Brenda driving, we came upon the sign welcoming us to Celina (see below). We were entering Celina from the East on Market Street. We drove by The Daily Standard where I was a newspaper carrier and came to the corner of Market and Main -- downtown Celina. We parked and started taking picture of the area. Downtown hasn’t changed -- just got older.

The corner of Main and Market is where the City Web Cam is located. There is a tall tower southeast corner which has the camera that is on 24-7. I look it up every day to see the activity of that corner. I told my wife, Ann, that we would be on that corner Sunday afternoon at 2:00 p.m. Ohio time and will be waving to her. I had mentioned it on my BLOG and have been told by several people that they also had tuned in to see us. Well - here we are on Saturday afternoon and decided to give her a call anyway to see us. She did and we talked and waved. Just a warm up for Sunday appearance.

We walked down to The Daily Standard building which was closed and took a couple of pictures. On our way back to the corner of Main and Market I saw an old Buick driving toward the corner going our way. I waved and the driver waved. I caught up to him and asked what year this car was -- he responded “1946 and I’m going to park around the corner and want to talk to you”. That was our introduction to a very interesting person named “Whitey”. He deserves his own story on this trip so I won’t say anymore about him now. Stay tuned.

After walking down Main street to see the downtown area, we got into our car and found our motel (thanks to Whitey) and checked in. We stayed there for two days and nights. It is the West Bank Inn located across the highway from Grand Lake. The Inn has 5 rooms up and 5 rooms down. Each has a view of the lake. We were down in 105. After unpacking and resting for a while, I called Karl Allmandinger who was the only person I knew living in Celina.

Karl and I knew each other in Junior High. He was one year ahead of me. He married Helen Howell who at one time was my brother Ben’s girlfriend. She attended the same church that my grandpa was the pastor. Actually lived a block from the church. Helen and I were friends for the 6 years I lived there.

My cousin, Eileen Nixon, went back to Ohio in 1999 for a family reunion on her dad’s side. Her mother Doris was my dad’s sister. I asked Eileen when she stopped in Celina to visit our Uncle Carlan to take some pictures for me. She did and those pictures appeared in my autobiography as “current” pictures of places I knew. I asked her to find Helen who had married Karl. She called the home and found that Helen spends time volunteering at the city library. So she met Helen there and we got re-connected through the email system. A couple of years ago, Helen died ending their 56 year marriage. Karl kept the emails coming and a connection with Celina. During my last visit to Celina in 1952, Helen and I sang a duet in the church. You can read about that here.

Karl, Brenda and I went out to one of the towns better eating establishments called “CJ’s HighMarks” and enjoyed the evening talking and enjoying too much good food. In fact, Karl and I had pork chops and he got to take two home for later. Karl is a good representative of people who live in Celina. He was born in the farmlands surrounding Celina and has lived there all his life. I read the obits on The Daily Standard web site daily and a good many of them were born in the area and lived their entire lives there whether it would be 60 years or 95 years.

After dinner, we got a tour of Karl’s home and looked through a photo album of their 50th wedding celebration. That ended our Saturday - second day of our trip.

Dick standing by the Celina Welcoming Sign.

Downtown Celina from the corner of Market and Main.

Mercer County Court House. Celina is the county seat of Mercer County.

Dick standing by The Daily Standard office building.

Celina City Web Cam Tower at Market and Main.

Dick waving to the web cam Saturday afternoon June 13, 2009.

Dick Moore and Karl Allmandinger - old school friends.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Back To My Roots - Riverside Cemetery Troy Ohio - Part 2

This is a series of a number of postings concerning my trip back to Indiana and Ohio. My daughter, Brenda, and I took this trip to visit mainly Ohio places that I remember and haven’t been to since I left Celina, Ohio in September 1949. If you haven’t read the previous posting, please do so now. This will get you up to date with the stories about this trip of a lifetime.

Brenda and I had breakfast in Muncie, IN with my brother Bob and his wife Mary Lou on Saturday morning June 13th. Our next stop was Troy, Ohio to visit relatives grave plots.

Why return to the cemetery? My dad died in 1940 and the last visit I had at my dad’s grave was in 1948 when my grandparents took Ben and me there. I had Grandpa take a picture with my Ansco box camera of me, Grandma, and Ben standing behind dad’s grave marker. The picture is below. Two years later in 1950 my grandmother died and was buried about 35 feet behind where I was standing.

She was 64 years old and had 12 children and helped to raise two grandchildren. When Brenda and I arrived in Troy we had no idea where Riverside Cemetery was located. First we would get lunch and then locate the cemetery. On our way through the town to find a place to eat, we drove right by Riverside Cemetery! Beginner’s luck! So we stopped at a local eating establishment and then went back to the cemetery. Of course, the first place you would visit would be the office to locate the plots of Leonard Moore and my grandparents Jesse I. and Mattie Moore. We found the office and they were closed on Saturdays. Ok - now what do we do. This is a big place. Brenda said she was saying a prayer for guidance and I decided we would drive slowly around and see if we couldn’t find a section that had markers of 1940 - 41 - 42. We found one and I said “that has to be it”. We got out of the car and Brenda took the left side of this section and I took the right side.

About 10 minutes later I found my grandparents plots and called to Brenda to look down by the road for M. Leonard Moore as he should be next to the road. She found it! Prayer works! One thing you will notice in the more recent pictures of dad’s marker is a tree. That tree wasn’t there in 1948 when I last visited this spot.

I was able to introduce my daughter to her grandfather and to her great grandparents. This is the first time to “meet” my Grandma. She had met my Grandpa before at our home in Huntington Beach when we had his 95th birthday party for relatives in Southern California. Grandpa was on a trip west to visit a couple of his children who lived in this area. It happened right around his birthday so we honored him then. Grandpa lived to be 101 years and 11 months old before his death in December 1984.

Something that Brenda did on this entire trip was to pull out her video camera and let me talk about memories at every place we visited. This was put into a DVD for me to remember this incredible trip. She and her husband, Scott, are able to do wonders with video and still pictures for memory purposes. So I was able to give my memories about visiting dad’s grave before and about living with my grandparents.

I don’t remember my dad at all. I was 6 years old when he passed away and that is when my memories start. I know he remembered me.

Entrance to Riverside Cemetery in Troy Ohio. As you see, it started in 1867.

Dick, Grandmother, and Ben in 1948 visit to dad's grave stone.

Grandpa Moore in Celina, Ohio after his wife's passing in 1950.

Dick at his father's grave stone on June 13, 2009.

Brenda at her grandfather's grave stone June 13, 2009.

Dick at his grandparent's grave site June 13, 2009.

Brenda at her Great Grandparent's grave site June 13, 2009.

Dick near his dad's grave site - notice the tree that wasn't in the 1948 picture.

I was at my grandmother's funeral service in Celina and Troy in 1950. So I must have come by this spot for grandmother's burial. I don't remember it. Very glad I was able to revisit this cemetery and introduce Brenda to her history!