Class of 1954 Gathers

Class of 1954 Gathers

Small group comes together.

’Buzz’ was there, ‘Red’ was there and so was ‘Fish.’ Whether or not they use these names now doesn’t matter; they were with their buddies from 50 years ago, and nicknames were most appropriate.

About 15 members of Mount Vernon High School’s (MVHS) Class of 1954 gathered last weekend at Old Country Buffet. It was an impromptu get-together spurred by a visit from Mary Jane diZerega Hammerland, who now lives in Carmel, Calif. She was visiting friends in Virginia and called up some of her old high school buddies to see if they wanted to get together. Phone calls were made, bringing together Hammerland, Darlene Thornton Watkins, Virginia Weisbrod Wilson, Paul ‘Red’ Jenkins, Ed Whitechurst, Bill Gill, Jerry Griswold, Dallas Phillips, L.D. ‘Buzz’ Jackson III, Bob Hardage, Carl Sell and Gene ‘Fish’ Kilby.

When asked if they were all friends in high school, Sell said, “Everybody knew everybody in those days.”

When this class attended school, they were still housed in the building on Richmond Highway, now home to the Saudi Academy. Jenkins said that they had to use the gym at Fort Belvoir because they didn’t have their own.

“It was built during the war and there was no steel,” he said.

An official reunion will be held next year for the Class of 1954 and 1955. Call 540-877-2513.