|Eldena Hamilton Allen|
Looking back, while I worked for Thies, I was heavily involved with civic duties as part of my PR position with Thies Packing Co. Chamber of Commerce, GBID (Great Bend Industrial Development), with establishing the airport into an Industrial Park; bringing in the Marlette Mfg. plant, bringing the Railroad spur, Natural Gas Line, Expanded Sewer and Water facilities; fundraising period of Central Kansas Medical Center and Barton County Community College, County Red Cross Chairman, promoting Republican party Precinct. I conducted the Safety meetings for Thies Packing, collected for the United Way, and served for one year as Chairman of the congregation at Trinity Lutheran Church, as well as singing in the Church Choir and teaching Sunday School.
|JC Penney occupied the|
former Wiley's building
It was not hard to get drafted to be part of community improvement. Then the Lions Cub planted all those Redbud trees on Broadway.
Then the FIRES! Parrish Hotel, the Woodman Hall at Broadway and Main...WOW! Hasn't Great Bend come a long ways in fifty years? We used to have the Strand and Plaza Theater. Of course speaking of fires. The Royal Theater in Hoisington as well as Hunts Pool Hall near where Star Grocery used to be at 2nd and Main. Then the Alexander Cafe fire. Remember the old Moanon (sic) Hotel south of Howell Grocery. On the Hunts Pool Hall, it was winter and my dad was one of the volunteers helping to fight the fire. Their overalls froze still while they worked that night.
Well, I may be boring you. Many of these things probably occurred before you were old enough to remember. I think Charlie Hulme giving that Sportsman Club ground to form the Historical Society was a Great Boost for the town.
I could go on and on. I have a one track mind and when it meanders on and on, I am unable to find a stopping place. But you still fit into my pleasant memories. Your family was wonderful, especially your mom helped my mom a great deal. My mom always fixed a big dinner on Labor Day to feed many of the Argonne Rebels members. Seems your mom also helped with that. Your dad was such a "straight shooter", quiet, sincere, friendly, dependable. It was a treat to be his friend. Well, that was all back in the 1950-60s and here we are forty and fifty years later. Still talking about it.
Thanks for listening!