My Third Grade teacher was Mrs. Smith. Mrs. Smith intervened when I felt harassed by Brian Smith. Brian Smith and his friend Kevin Ernst used to chase me around the play ground all the time. Admittedly, I was flattered at first. The attention was nice, but then they just wouldn’t leave me alone. I grew increasingly frustrated. Finally, I spoke to my teacher and she spoke to Brian for me.
Later that year we were at the same lunch table and Brian was being annoying. I threatened to launch my applesauce at him. I hadn’t intended on actually doing so, but my finger slipped and the applesauce went flying. It landed square in the middle of Brian’s forehead. Ticked off at me, Brian went to tell Mrs. Smith. Mrs. Smith said he probably deserved it and I never got in trouble!
When I was a baby, Mike and Shelia Boorom lived in a trailer on 2nd Street. It was just a few houses down and across from Gaye and Ray Shira. The Boorom’s moved elsewhere for a while. Then during my 3rd Grade year Mike and Shelia moved to Oak Street. The first time I remember meeting Jill was when Shelia came over for a visit. Jill and I sat in my cardboard washing machine box play-home. Jill carried a purse with lip gloss or lip balm in it and she wanted to talk about boys. Her sister Sara was in Kindergarten and her brother Nathan was 3 or 4 years old at the time.
I tried to spend the night at her house. It was during the dead of winter and like 60 degrees BELOW zero! I was so homesick that I couldn’t sleep, so Mike took me home on his way to work at 6am.
Jill had Miss Michaels so we didn’t see much of each other in school, but we were still the best of friends. I really missed her when she moved to Rhode Island for her 4th Grade year.
She wasn’t my classroom our 5th Grade year either, but I was still had to have her back. We had fun talking about my crush Scott Howard and her crush Ezra. We would often talk about them after swimming at the Y together.
Gaye and Ray moved from 2nd to Gamble in 1986 or 1987 I think. For a brief time Mike and Shelia lived in the Shira’s old trailer on 2nd. Then they moved out the farm house on State Route 39 in 1987. Then in 1989 they moved down the lane to Ganges, which was in the Plymouth School district. Eventually they moved to Fenner Road. That was when I lost track of them, after 1994.
Anyway, I had my tonsils taken out when I was in 3rd Grade. It was December 18, 1985. I remember feeling great after I woke up, but when I got home it had caught up with me. I was off school a week maybe.
I’m not sure when Mom started dating Reed Castor. It was late 84 or early 85 I think. They’d known of each other back in High School, but never dated. Reed was newly divorced from Jeff’s Mom.
Reed lived on Dininger Road just outside of Shelby when they first started dating. It was an old farm house that was sparsely furnished. I think the house belonged to him and his ex-wife. He got custody of Jeff for whatever reason. Then he sold the house and got an apartment on Broadway. He had the downstairs and the landlord’s son and girlfriend lived upstairs if I remember right. He also had a certificate hanging on his wall from when he was in the Navy. It said he’d crossed the Arctic Circle in a Submarine, which I thought was cool. Reed loved to woodwork in his parent’s basement I remember. He made Owl Bookends for Mom.
Eventually, Reed moved to Columbus to work. He wanted Mom to move with him, but she didn’t want to. That is when they more or less broke up. Although they still went out occasionally when he was back in Shelby. I think he moved in 1987 or 1988.
For awhile Jeff attended school in Worthington, Ohio. He had issues, so he came back to live with his Grandmother Lois Castor. Lois had been my former music teacher at Whitney School, but she’d since retired. While he was living with his Grandmother, he met Sarah Shepherd, who lived down around the corner from him after her parents got a divorce.
I spent some time at Lois’s house. She must have babysat for me a few times. Louis loved making cakes and decorating cakes. She made a couple of my Birthday Cakes, as well as my Mom’s Birthday Cakes. I remember watching The Neverending Story with Jeff. We also played on his skateboard and his moon-ball bouncer thing. We played outside some too.
Reed had a brother, Mark and sister-in-law Roberta. The first time we visited them, they lived out in the country between Shelby and Galion. Then they moved to an apartment on Main Street. There was a pizza place to their left and an apartment upstairs in the same house. Roberta was into painting and arts and crafts like Mom. In fact, Mom had a booth next to Roberta’s at the High School’s Arts and Crafts Festival. Eventually Mark and Roberta moved again and had a baby—Libby I think was her name.
Roberta watched Jeff and me a few times as well. We watched Superman and Raiders of the Lost Ark at her place. Right after Reed picked up one time Jeff was pretending to be Superman and accidentally punched me in the stomach! He had been like a rowdy little brother to me while our parents dated. He’d do stuff like put pennies in the heater of his Dad’s Ford Escort and break the heater, but nothing too bad really Though he often got on my nerves, I still thought he was a good kid overall.
Reed was a good sport when I picked his pocket. He’d be making out with my Mom and I‘d take his wallet from his back pocket. I probably could have stolen it and gotten some cash, but I always returned it to him. I just liked the challenge of being unnoticed more than anything.
I almost forgot about Chad Wilson. He lived next door to me where Jason and Jenny Barber lived later. He and I were both in 3rd Grade. He hung out with Nathan Wallace I think. Later Nathan earned the nickname Lump. Anyway, Chad had an older sister named Rhonda. Chad and I really liked each other. He picked a Tiger Lily from the side of his house and gave it to me. Later, he asked if we could go behind the bushes beside Mrs. Ross’s house. We crawled back then and he ended up kissing me on the nose! To this day I am not sure if he had really bad aim or if meant to do that. He also watched me bake in my mini-bake oven. I got quite mad him though for being a jerk toward me in front of his friends. He moved to Clark Street before our 4th Grade Year. He still went to Whitney for a while, but then moved from Clark Street and Shelby some time later. I lost track of him pretty quickly.
Oh, and 1985 was the year that both Mrs. Ross and my Great-Grandmother died. Mrs. Ross lived on Third Street, where Melody and Shannon Keene live now. Her husband had passed away some time ago. She was retired, but still gave piano lessons in her home. I took a few lessons from her, but I wasn’t very good. She also used to pay me to sweep her porch and sidewalk from time to time. I earned a whole quarter!
Great-Grandma, Faith Hoak, had lung cancer. She had been a smoker all her adult life. Anyway, she succumbed to the cancer and died. I didn’t know her well, but I missed visiting her over in Park Village. Grandma got her photos of Uncle Bill and everyone. Mom got her white bedspreads. One night I dreamed of both Mrs. Ross and Grandma Hoak together visiting me, which was nice.