Biographical Sketches and Photos Supplied by '60 Classmates
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I’ll never forget our senior banquet: It was a very sad day. My father was buried that morning and that night I danced in Hogan’s Fountain, stepped barefoot on a broken beer bottle, got six or seven stitches and had a profuse limp at graduation. I don't remember anything of significance from my high school years, except meeting my 1st and 3rd wife, Linda Faye (Shelburne) Rucker, class of ‘61. I graduated from Eastern Kentucky several years later and then from the Southern Police Institute at U of L. I had a moderately successful, 30-year career in law enforcement with the Jefferson County Police Department, retiring as a captain (commander). I served three years as the first city administrator for the City of Simpsonville, and served five years on the Shelby County School Board. Our four children are a blessing to Linda and me. While all are out of the nest, only two still live in the area. I'm exceedingly proud of all of them. Our youngest two graduated from West Point, served in Iraq and are out of the military. Linda married me twice, which proves "love is blind", thank God! We've spent almost 45 years together and truly enjoy our life. About the only thing we don't do together is ride Harley's. In recent years I've spent a fair amount of time exploring other religions, looking for answers to an afterlife. I found great comfort in the Dalai Lama's writings and am currently studying to become a Tibetan monk.
Submitted by Marc Rucker
After viewing the memorabilia pages, my old brain has pulled some memories out of storage. At the Senior Baccalaureate service I was sitting next to Jill Wring. The pastor of the church stated he knew we were all good Christian souls and would do very well in life. Jill, knowing that I was Jewish, looked at me and told me not to say a word. I remember being in Class Night and the Senior Play. Those were great times, which made me consider becoming an actor or being in some part of the entertainment industry. I participated in community theater and college productions, such as “Mr. Roberts” and “Little Mary Sunshine,” to name a couple. After graduation my family moved to Ann Arbor, Michigan, because my father was rehired by the company he worked for when he and mother were first married. I enrolled at Western Michigan University in the Speech, Theater and Broadcasting curriculum. In acting class one day, the professor gave us statistics on our chances of getting a job as an actor and becoming famous. After that warning, I switched to Broadcasting. While going to school, I worked for WKZO television, where my boss taught me how to direct programs. I also did voiceover announcing. After my father died in 1967, the family moved back to Louisville. I found a job at WLKY-TV and worked there for several years. When George Wallace was running for President, ABC brought him to Louisville for a live remote of the Sunday news show with Peter Jennings. Even though I didn't agree with his politics, he was an interesting person to meet. Also, meeting Peter Jennings was very exciting. We all know life throws curve balls and my time in broadcasting ended in 1974. My next career was in retail sales and then management. I went to work in Cincinnati for Evans Furs of Chicago. They leased space at the old Shillitos store, later Lazarus and Macy’s. In 1981 I was transferred to Las Vegas, where Evans had salons in several hotels. While working in salons at the old MGM Hotel and also at Caesars Palace, I had the pleasure of meeting celebrities, including Bonnie Franklin, the mother on “One Day At A Time,” Ann Margaret and husband Roger Smith, Charlene Tilton from “Dallas”, Sylvester Stallone, John Davidson, Mary Hart from “Entertainment Tonight” and Jerry Lewis. There are people who think working in the fur industry isn’t politically correct, but I worked in it for over 20 years. It gave me the opportunity to travel to or live in many places. Some of the cities I’ve lived are Dallas, Atlanta, San Diego, Kansas City, Des Moines, Memphis and Nashville. I'm still in retailing. For the last 12 years, I've sold alternative bedding. I presently work for Select Comfort, creator of the Sleep Number Bed. I moved back to Cincinnati 12 years ago after my brother-in-law died. My sister is disabled and I help her. I never married. I was engaged to a girl I met in college, but I moved back to Louisville with my family. She lived in Detroit. The problem was that when I couldn't go there on the weekend, she was dating others; so, the relationship ended and I never found anyone else. I didn't really look that hard. I’m happy, healthy, single and living in Cincinnati,
Submitted by Bill Wolder
Marc Rucker is active in politics in Shelby County.
Marc Rucker spent most of his career wearing blue, but now he aspires to change into orange robes.
Bill Wolder, looking casual in Cincinnati.
After starting in broadcasting, Bill Wolder
became a happy vagabond, living
and working in several great locales.
Vol. 50, No. 1 FERN CREEK, KENTUCKY - Location of Friendliest School in the County October 3, 2010
I wasn’t a star in Louise Brown's 6th period senior English class, but she must have forced some skills into my 17-year-old head, so here goes:
My life in Fern Creek began when Dad drove our 1951 Plymouth from Erie, Pennsylvania, loaded with Mom and a Cocker spaniel, cat, rabbit and Pete in the back seat. We were the fifth house from the school on the right, on Fern Creek Road, then the sixth house and then the seventh house, as more were built to accommodate the General Electric influx in 1953. I always walked, no, make that ran to school every day, trying to beat the home room bell. There were no sidewalks then and city water had recently been installed. I was assigned to Mrs. Ramsey's sixth grade class, held in the last classroom on the first floor of the "new wing" of the high school, because the grade school was bursting at the seams. The Ramsey's lived down the street from my house and Jimmy Ramsey used to play softball in the fields behind our houses. Dr. James Ramsey, ’66, is now president of the University of Louisville. I remember building volcanoes, using chicken wire obtained from the Fern Creek Feed store and paper mache. We burned incense in the top of the mountain to make it smoke. When we lit the incense, the volcano “erupted” and stank up the hallway, which was great fun for all, except Mr. Klapheke. This was the first time I met him, in the sixth grade. In seventh grade, we made our class team basketball shirts. We were the "Kurtz Krazy Kats," shortened to KKK on the back of our tee-shirts. We were too naive to catch the implication of the abbreviation. I always did my best to avoid the school office. The image of the oak paddle with the holes drilled through was enough to keep me away Fern Creek was still a rural area, with lots of corn fields. Our house had plenty of grass to mow (my job) and we had fruit trees and a garden out back. This was great for a ten year old from the city. I don’t know about now, but then, Fern Creek was the only place with that name in the United States. I knew it because I worked part time for the Fern Creek post office, delivering mail and Christmas packages, to help pay for two years of electronics school. It was great fun to see the look on people’s faces, when I delivered their packages during a snow storm on Christmas Eve. Some classmates might remember my 1946 Willys Jeep, a poor man’s convertible and the cheapest car I’ve owned. It cost $400 and I sold it ten years later for $450. I should have kept it, because it’s a collectable. I installed speakers on the roof and a tape recorder inside, so I could drive around town advertising Fern Creek football games and the Booster Club’s Saturday night movie in the high school auditorium. It cost fifty cents for the movie and a dime for a Coke or popcorn. The Booster Club paid me four dollars and I saw a free movie, but I had to make the popcorn. The money filled my gas tank for the week and then some. There was a memorable encounter during senior play rehearsal in the auditorium. I popped open a five gallon soda can of Bubble-Up, left over from concession sales, that was being stored in a room under the gym seats. I distributed drinks to everyone in the cast, as well as the advisors/teachers. I carefully closed the can back so no one would be aware of our little "party." The next day at school, I was called down to the office by Mr. K, along with Don Bush and other members of the play cast and crew. Mr. K was looking for whomever opened the orange soda can and dropped the lid down inside. He asked "What did we have to drink last night?" We told him Bubble-Up, which made him angry, so he got on the public address system and called the entire senior play cast to his office. All admitted drinking Bubble-Up. Finally, with some trepidation, I asked if he was looking for the orange soda thief. He immediately said "Tell me about the orange soda". I told him I had seen the open orange can when I was distributing Bubble-Up. Still upset, he told us to go back to our classes. A short while later, he paged the entire track team to the office. Afterwards, we heard about team members getting sick in the restrooms. Mr. K. made them drink the remaining hot orange soda. I never heard another word about the Bubble-Up, but for the next several days, I lived in fear of a return trip to Mr. K's office. I saw Mr. K five years later at Ashley's Standard station and summoned enough courage to ask if he remembered the soda episode. He said he did. When asked why he didn’t punish me for taking the Bubble-Up, he said that if I was nice enough to pass out drinks to the whole cast, and resealed the can, without wasting any, he figured he wasn't supposed to know it happened. There was a soft spot under his terror image. After Fern Creek High I went to electronics school and then into the Army. When I came home I attended Speed Engineering School at U of L and went to work at WKLO Radio, for several years. Afterwards, I formed a broadcast engineering firm, doing consulting work in almost every state, building several radio and TV stations. Today, I’m a radio station owner. My career resulted in much travel. I’ve been in every state and around 45 countries, including two trips to Russia. The first was in 1993, after the Soviet Union crumbled, and 14 years later, in 2007, to witness the tremendous progress the Russian people have made. When the kid from Fern Creek walked inside the Kremlin walls, it was an eerie feeling. I suppose my biggest accomplishment while at Fern Creek High was that I didn't miss a day of school. I’ll bet there aren’t many kids can say that today.
Submitted by Peter Boyce
(Editor's Note: Peter was one of only three Class of '60 members with perfect attendance. The other two were Sue Inman Taylor and Stanley Haas.)
(Editor's Note: As a member of the track team, it was convenient of me to be away from school on Tiger Gazette business, when the team was summoned to Mr. Klapheke's office, but I certainly heard the complaints at practice that day. As far as I know, none of the team had anything to do with the incident.)
Peter Boyce studied electronics, traveled extensively and now owns radio stations. In school, he had a taste for Bubble Up.