March 30 ~ April 2, 2017
Holiday Inn on Jekyll Island
Register: Jan Sala
Glynn Academy Class of 1967, Brunswick, Georgia, information blog containing links to connect to many other classmates.
It began innocently enough with no strategy or agenda. About two years before our 40th Reunion just a few classmates began emailing each other. These simply shared high school memories and got caught up on individual histories. Typical questions regarding had someone heard from "so-n-so" led to serious efforts to locate "so-n-so" and invite them to email their memories and updates. Like your class, most everyone had lost track of most everyone else in our class.
As the emailing classmates grew in number, one classmate offered to become "email central". Everyone agreed to email to this classmate who in turn forwarded all emails to all classmates in the group. Private emails were sent directly to the classmates intended.
The "email central" classmate came to be likened to an "engineer" as newly found classmates were welcomed aboard what came to be called the "E-Train".
Though it was still a year-and-a-half away, our upcoming 40th Reunion added a greater purpose and urgency to the E-Train to make a concerted effort to locate and "connect" with as many of our 488 classmates as possible. Though we were searching and found many, there were very few who were searching and found us. It was like most classmates were sitting around waiting or hoping to be found! These few might have found our Reunion notices posted in all the right places, but most would have assumed no one really cared anymore and would have little motivation to look. Understanding the value in reaching out and connecting with another classmate inspired our search that would eventually lead us around the world!
The "E-Train" ride proved again and again that even after 40 years of hardly any contact at all old friends are true friends and new friends are a present opportunity. Sharing the past leads to sharing the present. Classmates discovered an extended family with tremendous heart, information and resources during times of personal need. Some have health issues, some have parents dying, some have children in the war, some have retired or been forced to retire and some are lonely and need to know someone remembers them and care about them.
In a quest to honor veterans during Reunion, we were amazed to learn 110, almost half of our male classmates, served in the Armed Forces during the Vietnam War. An unanticipated number had been awarded Purple Hearts and two had made the ultimate sacrifice.
Our search efforts included contacting beloved and respected teachers and coaches. Several of them "climbed aboard the E-Train" and were special guests during our 40th Reunion.
During our search we learned with great sadness that 49 classmates, one out of ten of our graduating class, had passed on. It's sobering to remember that number will only continue to rise. The stark certainty of our mortality fuels efforts to "reconnect" with all our classmates.
It is tempting to deceive oneself with a view that our Glynn Academy Class of '67 is "special". That would be unjustifiable. I am convinced that our class is mirrored over and over again by thousands of high school graduating classes near our size from our era in history. Technology continues to make it easier to locate people and communicate with one another. Ours is not the first, nor the only class to accomplish "reconnection". Our efforts continue as the existence of this blog should demonstrate. We are still searching for classmates.
It only takes a handful of classmates willing to risk a little to reach out and locate other classmates. Maybe it has to start with you. If everyone locates one then eventually all will be found. Here's hoping you'll have 360 at your 45th Reunion, Cherie!