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How to join

Friends of

Pawnee Rock

1. Send your e-mail address to leon@pawneerock.org and tell me you want to be listed.

2. Include as much of this information as you'd like:

  • Name
  • E-mail address
  • Street/postal address
  • City where you live now
  • Connection to Pawnee Rock (write as much as you'd like)
  • General remarks to PawneeRock.org's readers (write as much as you'd like)
  • Photo of you, your family, your house, your pets
  • 3. To frustrate spam robots, I'll modify all the e-mail addresses. For example, leon@pawneerock.org will be listed at PR-leon@pawneerock.org.

    So, when you want to send an e-mail to anyone on the list, start with the address that's listed but leave off the "PR-" at the beginning. In other words, change PR-leon@pawneerock.org to leon@pawneerock.org.

    Check these out

    flyoverpeople logo
    Flyoverpeople.net is PR native Cheryl Unruh's chronicle of life in Kansas. She often describes Pawnee Rock and what it has meant to her.

    Explore Kansas logo
    Explore Kansas encourages Kansans to hit the road -- all the roads -- and enjoy the state. Marci Penner, a guidebook writer from Inman, is the driving force of this site.

    Santa Fe Trail oxen and wagon logo
    The Santa Fe Trail Research Site, produced by Larry and Carolyn Mix of St. John, has hundreds of pages dedicated to the trail that runs through Pawnee Rock.

    KansasPrairie.net logo
    Peg Britton mowed Kansas. Try to keep up with her as she keeps Ellsworth, and the rest of Kansas, on an even keel. KansasPrairie.net

    Do you have an entertaining or useful blog or personal website? If you'd like to see it listed here, send the URL to leon@pawneerock.org.

    • • •


    Give us your Pawnee Rock news, and we'll spread the word.

    Friends of Pawnee Rock

    Use this list to get in touch with your old friends from Pawnee Rock. When you write to the people on the list, delete the "PR-" from the e-mail address.

    List your name -- Send Leon an e-mail now.

    Eldon Esau
    Whitewater, KS

    Pawnee Rock connection: Grandparents were Lamont and Edith (Base) Smith. Son of Zola Smith, and nephew of Durward, Edwin, and Marilyn Smith.

    Remarks: We made the three-hour trip west into drier territory several times every year to visit the Smith grandparents. At holidays, Christmas for sure every year, we played with our cousins. A walk to the Rock was something we kids could do on our own. Over the sidewalk bridge with the bent down rail, past the concrete box with a locked lid. Sometimes our family would spend a night with the grandparents and would attend Bergthal Mennonite Church with them.

    I have the priviledge of living in the house on the farm my grandparents Esau built for their family. I took over my uncle's farm, after about ten years I took a job in construction to support my farming habit. I eventually gave up my rented ground, planted my quarter to brome grass and during the growing season I let a neighbor graze cattle on it. In the process of maintaining an old house I have discovered shellac was the finish of choice in the early 1900s, it is the smell of Sunday School at Bergthal and at Emmaus.

    Dawn (Keys) Cole
    Johnson City, Tennessee

    Pawnee Rock connection: My family lived in Pawnee Rock from 1963 until 1966. My parents were Don and Carol Keys and I had 4 younger siblings. I attended kindergarten, first and second grade at Pawnee Rock school. I lived in the house designated the "Zieber house" elsewhere on this website.

    Remarks: Since I left when I was only about 7, my memories are not very clear, but it was always, in my mind, the most wonderful place in the world! We moved to a farm in Missouri and I always wanted to return to the little town where I could walk to school and to the store and to my friends' houses. It was always a golden place over the rainbow. I was so saddened to hear that the house we had lived in had burned down.

    Dawn Perry, RN

    Pawnee Rock connection: I lived in Pawnee Rock from 1966 to 1983. My mom is Lola Cavalier and my sister is Patti and brother Bobby. The house we lived in was on Bismarck and Rock Streets, I think. Graduated from LHS in 1983. I left and joined the Army. Been married 26 years, have 4 children: Natasha (26), Brian Jr. (25), Amanda and Anthony (22). I have been in North Carolina since 1992.

    Remarks: Some of my fondest memories of Pawnee Rock are tubing down the Rock in the snow and Pawnee Rock School. The best teachers EVER!!! My oldest two children even went to PR school for a short time. It was strange walking down the hall and seeing some of my old teachers still there.

    Barry A. Jack
    512 Santa Fe Avenue
    Pawnee Rock

    Pawnee Rock connection: I moved to Pawnee Rock in April 2007 and have been a member of the fire dept since July 2007 and member of the city council since last summer 2010. I have been working at Larned Correctional Mental Health Facility since Feb 2000.

    Cindy Armstrong
    512 Santa Fe Avenue
    Pawnee Rock

    Pawnee Rock connection: I moved to Kansas 5 years ago. I quickly learned that Kansas is God's little secret. I bought the house on Rock Street with the history. I work at USD 495.

    Eleanor (Sawatzky) Wiebe
    Fort Collins, Colorado

    Pawnee Rock connection: I am Eleanor (Sawatzky) Wiebe, a 1956 graduate of Pawnee Rock High School. I was the oldest of 5: (Pauline (deceased in 2007); Phyllis Friesen (living in Bluffton, Ohio); Sheldon (living in Taiwan); and Tim (living in North Newton, KS). Our parents were Victor and Ruth Sawatzky, and we lived directly across from the original high school in the Mennonite Church parsonage.

    Remarks: Since graduating, my husband Paul and I have lived in Atlanta, GA, Chicago, ILL, Wichita, KS, Seattle, Berkeley, Upland, CA, and now in Fort Collins, CO. I worked mostly in the social services field, including St. Joseph Medical Center in Wichita, adult day health care centers, and with juvenile offenders. My last job in Upland, CA was as a small claims court mediator, and coordinator of senior services for a housing agency. It would be fun to hear from my classmates. This would be our 55th year since graduating. I recall our 25th reunion with fondness, and I got a red rose for coming from the farthest away, Wichita!

    Ronald Long
    1108 S. High St.
    Neosho, MO 64850

    Pawnee Rock connection: I attended Pawnee Rock High School my Junior and Senior years -- Class of '61 -- 50 years ago "WOW." Although I was only there 2 years, I call Pawnee Rock home. When I am asked where I am from, I answer Pawnee Rock, Kansas. When we moved to Pawnee Rock, I had already attended 5 grade schools and 3 high schools in various places. I had more fun in those 2 years at Pawnee Rock than most people have in a lifetime. (My teachers would say too much fun!)

    I played football, basketball and ran track (not much studying). I have lifelong friendships that were formed in Pawnee Rock. Some of the wonderful times I recall are the field trip that Coach Murry took Dave Schmidt, Bill Unruh and I on. We went to Oklahoma on a rattlesnake hunt. We captured 3 good sized Diamondbacks and brought them back alive. Mr. Rucker called an assembly of the whole school and we turned these rattlers loose on the gym floor. Then we demonstrated how we caught them and bagged them. The Great Bend Tribune was there and the next day, there was a front page story with pictures of the re-creation of our snake hunt.

    In '61, the Santa Fe Trail was celebrating history with a "trail caravan." Although the Rock was a very important place in the 1800's, the caravan organizers decided they didn't have time to stop at the Rock. News of this got to several citizens and Dan King, our band teacher organized a group of us Pawnee Rock Braves and in full Indian attire and weaponry, we attacked the wagon train, captured the leader and forced him to sign a treaty with us to never pass us by again. These are just a couple of the many great memories I have of the Rock.

    Remarks: Since leaving Pawnee Rock, I have lived in Nebraska, Colorado, Kansas and now Missouri. I have 2 sons that have grown up to be successful in life, family and work, as I have. I have been blessed with a wonderful wife, Judy and also I gained her 2 daughters. I sold my marina at Council Grove, KS, in 2005 and retired from my sales job of 30 years in 2009. Judy retired from Kansas State Veterinary Medicine College in 2007. After retirement, we decided we would like to live in the Ozarks. The big thing that sold me on Neosho, Missouri, is the 27-hole golf course. By the way, in case any of you are wondering, I AM STILL HAVING FUN!

    Christopher Batchman
    Spring Hill, KS

    Pawnee Rock connection: I spent the first 2 years of my life in Pawnee Rock. My parents, Richard and Debbie, lived in the house at the end of Flora on the South side. We moved out to the farm where I grew up, but I still attended Pawnee Rock Elementary School through 4th grade. I remember spending the summer days with my Great-Grandparents, Harold and Ella Geil. We would always walk up to the post office to get the mail. Sometimes my brothers and I would go across the street to visit the neighbors. I graduated from Otis-Bison, like my father, with 3 of my classmates from Pawnee Rock.

    Remarks: I joined the Army Reserve in 1998. I attended KSU and KU, before volunteering for Recruiting duty in 2003. I am currently stationed in Olathe, KS. I am married to Dani (Fensky) from Moundridge, and we have two children, Bradyn and Camryn.

    Janet (Everett) Dimmitt Rentfrow Brown
    Las Vegas, NV

    Pawnee Rock connection: I lived in Dundee for as long as I can remember until I moved away in 1960. I went to Pawnee Rock School from the 5th grade to the 11th grade. I remember the Rock. We climbed all over it way back when. I went to the old school 5th and 6th grade and then the new school was built. There was still a old country school at Dundee when I started school and went there 1st to 4th grade.

    Remarks: I lived in California for awhile and in 1980 moved to Las Vegas. I was the administrator for 3 medical offices and am now retired. I have 2 children and an extended family. I have 7 grandchildren and 7 great-grandchildren. I lost touch with all my classmates. I have spoken with Virginia (Crone) Jacobs recently. I am going to the reunion this month [August 2010], my first, and I hope to see some of my classmates.

    Mike Dougherty
    11063 Stream Side Lane
    Culpeper, VA 22701

    Pawnee Rock connection: I went to high school at PRHS from 1968 until graduating with the final graduating class in 1972. I've led myself to believe that the school district felt so proud about that particular graduating class and they didn't think they could top the feat so they had to break up a good thing. There were so many good students in the school at the time that one school couldn't hold them, so they dispersed across the prairie and became distinguished graduates at many other high schools throughout the area. I hold fond memories of the school's athletic programs; the football dynasty in the late '60s and early '70s, the basketball road trips (what was in the water in McCracken that grew those guys so tall?), and those dry, hot, windy track meets. And who could forget those torturous sessions in Mrs. Schmidt's mandatory typing classes, wrestling with multiple carbon copies, those blasted address blocks on correspondence, and the dreaded speed tests! I'm grateful for the keyboard technique it created for me and the attention to detail that I use to this day when writing research and white papers.

    Remarks: I was selected as the one-most-likely-to-go-to-Washington, or something like that, by my graduating classmates, and I made it to DC, but not through elective politics, as predicted. I'm a transformational consultant to federal government agencies, so rather than go to Washington as a tax-and-spend politician; I'm engaged in the frustrating battle of convincing, coercing, or cajoling the massive, expensive, and inefficient governmental bureaucracies to become streamlined and efficient, and to reduce waste and expense. I'm a patriot from the heartland trying to get the most out of our tax dollars.

    Lynn and I have four children; one daughter, granddaughter, and great-grandson in Washington state, one daughter serving in the Army and soon to be deployed for her second tour in Korea (I'm proud to say "My daughter wears combat boots." Lynn and I are both Army veterans), one daughter majoring in chemistry in Colorado, and a son who still lives in Colorado. After PRHS, I attended Barton County Community College, graduated from the University of Colorado, spent a stint in the Army with a tour in Korea, and spent the next 25 years as a dad (my proudest and most important job) and working for various governmental entities in various capacities.

    Karen (Douglas) Riner

    Pawnee Rock connection: I went to Pawnee Rock Hi. I was a cheerleader in 1954 and 1955. We moved to Great Bend my senior year. My family lived in Pawnee Rock. I was born in Pawnee Rock in 1938.

    Mike Mawhirter
    Derby, Kansas

    Pawnee Rock connection: My parents lived in a oil field lease home N.W. of P.R. while Dad worked as a roustabout and pumper for the Stanolind Oil co. at the time. Our home was near the old Amerada housing and pumping station. They moved there in about 1942 (?), and we left for western Ks. in April of '51. I started school at the only remaining country school in the area, P.S. 25 south of Albert in 1945 with one classmate, Beverly Dirks, at the time. After the second grade, we went into P.R. grade until I left in 51'. I would have graduated with the class of 57' at P.R.H.S. and was fortunate enough to see many of my old classmates in Great Bend at the 50th reunion.

    Remarks: I am a retired airplane driver and live in Derby, Ks and enjoying good health currently and life in general. . . . Flew everything but airliners. Worked in Corporate Aviation mostly, about 30 yrs. with Cessna as a Corporate Chief Pilot in their Air Transportation Dept., and then as a Jet Demo Pilot on our Citation line for the last 3 years. Many other makes, Pipers, Mooneys, Beechcraft series, etc. etc. Almost 40 yrs. behind the plexiglas, and 24,000 hrs or so.

    Gary Harms
    3000 Girard
    Leavenworth, KS 66048

    Pawnee Rock connection: I am Gary Harms, grandson of Benjamin Siebert who came in 1874 as a child to Dundee. My uncle Chester Siebert's four kids all graduated from Pawnee Rock High School -- Elaine, Frances, Donald and Roger. My parents moved from our farm a mile north of Dundee to Great Bend in August 1942 where I grew up and went to school. My sister, Lila Harms Rogers Fuller, moved to the family farm in 1956 and lived there several years. Four of her five childrn went to Pawnee Rock Grade School until they moved to Ellinwood around 1966 or so. My nephews and nieces who attended school at Pawnee Rock are Jim Rogers, Paula Rogers, Rod Rogers and Linnette Rogers.

    Jim Davis
    1957 Burns
    Wichita, KS 67203

    Pawnee Rock connection: My name is Jim Davis and my wife's name is Joyce Dyer Davis. I went to school in Pawnee Rock from Jan. 1946 until Oct 1949.

    Linda Smith Kruckenberg Deckert and Andy Deckert
    Manhattan, KS

    Pawnee Rock connection: We graduated from Pawnee Rock in 1960, and would like to see if there is interest in a 50th reunion in 2010! I lived on a farm SE of town about a half mile, and Andy lived on a farm NW of town several miles. We both attended the Methodist Church. Both of our fathers were farmers, and my Dad, Wendell Smith, was on the school board for many years. So we felt involved in getting that new school building built! Then they took it away from us when my nieces were in school!

    Remarks: We would really like to hear from our classmates, of which there are many since we both went to school at Pawnee Rock for all 12 years! Our address in Manhattan, Ks, is PR-lindandy42@cox.net.

    Byron (Barney) Flanders
    8736 W. Coolidge St.
    Phoenix, Arizona 85037

    Pawnee Rock connection: I call Pawnee Rock my home town because in December of 1956 I was brought home to an 8 X 45 mobile home right off of 56 by my parents Richard (Dick) Flanders and Gilda (Gil) Flanders. My father was a music teacher at the then new high school. We spent 3 to 4 years in Pawnee Rock before moving on to Kinsley and then Phoenix in 1961. I have fond memories of living next to Vida Ross and her son Bill. Lloyd Clason and his wife and family lived across the street and his daughter Laurie babysat me.

    Remarks: I remember trips to the Rock for picnics and being cared for by the girls in the marching band when there would be football games. My mom befriended Dorothy and Alan Bowman and another wonderful lady named Ruth French. "Grandma French" as I came to know her took care of me when my mom went through a series of tough and lost pregnancies. The town seemed to take care of its own in ways like this. After moving on and in later years my family would visit Kanopolis, in the summer, where my parents were both from. We would load up and come visit our friends in Great Bend and Pawnee Rock. Unlike in Phoenix, I looked forward to being able to walk from one end of town to the other barefoot and without a care in the world. I speak to my friends about the fond memories of my rural roots on the heart of Kansas.

    Cathleen Unruh-Hall
    512 West Toledo Street
    Broken Arrow, OK 74012

    Pawnee Rock connection: I am the Great-granddaughter of Cornelius and Lena (Base) Schmidt. My grandmother was their daughter Laura June. My g-grandparents came from Russia and settled in Pawnee Rock in 1885. My grandmother was born there in 1895. They moved to Liberty and eventually to Dundee where (according to Cornelius' obituary in the Pawnee Rock Herald) he "passed his declining years in ease and comfort, in a home conceded by all to be the finest in the village." Shortly after his death, my grandmother married Peter Unruh and they moved to Greensburg.

    Remarks: I would love to hear from anyone who might know more about them or the Unruh family that Laura married into.

    Michael R. Vondracek
    209 Houck St.
    Pawnee Rock, KS 67567

    Pawnee Rock connection: As listed above, I am a resident of Pawnee Rock and have been since October of 2002. I did move away for about nine months in 2008, but I became homesick and now I am back. My mom, Susan (Manka) Vondracek, grew up here, where my grandpa, Bob Manka, lives and right across the street from where I reside. I grew up in Dorrance, KS and went to high school in Wilson. I then moved to Larned in 2000. I then moved to Pawnee Rock shortly after starting my job at the prison in Larned. I can't imagine a better place to live.

    Richard Batchman
    91 NW 130th Ave.
    Great Bend, Kansas 67530

    Pawnee Rock connection: I grew up in Pawnee Rock and would have been a graduate of the Class of 75, but everyone knows what happened in the spring of 1972. I grew up in the two-story Colonial-style house that was north of the Mennonite Church parsonage on Houck Street. My parents are Darrell and Audrey Batchman. My mother was also a graduate of Pawnee Rock, I think 1954. In the spring of 1972 my parents were lucky enough to sell their house, before the announcing of the school closing, and put up a new modular house on a little bit of ground my grandparents gave them (5 and 1/2 miles south of Albert). Living there it was only 12 miles from Otis, so that is where I graduated from in 1975. I went to Barton County for two years and that is also where I met my wife Debbie (Fairchild) of Larned. I started working for the state of Kansas in the fall of 1978 at Larned State Hospital SSP Program and continue to to this day.

    Debbie and I got married in July of 1979 and settled in Pawnee Rock in a LITTLE house at 633 Flora Ave. My grandparents (Harold and Ella Geil) had a nice country farm house that was getting to big for them so we traded places in August of 1982. We had two boys while we lived in Pawnee Rock and a third son a couple years later after moving to the farm. Our oldest son Christopher and his wife Dani live in Manhattan, and they have two children. He is an Army Reserve Recruiter for the NE part of Kansas. Our middle son Bryce is a Captain In the United States Air Force and is currently serving at the NATO Headquarters in Kabul, Afghanistan. Bryce and his wife Lindsey will live in Colorado Springs area when he gets back. And our third and youngest son Eric also lives in Manhattan. He is not married yet.

    I never ventured far from Pawnee Rock. Along with working at LSH I chose to stay close and go into farming with my dad in the fall of 1982. We gave up farming in 2006 and turned over the operations to someone else. I drive through Pawnee Rock twice a day and have been since 1982. I have seen countless changes over the years.

    Remarks: Most of what I call the Icons of Pawnee Rock are all gone now. The Gano Elevator, the Sewer Plant east of town, Clutter/Lindus, and the building where I learned woodworking from Leon's dad. The only thing left is the school. Two of my sons were fortunate enough to be able to attend school in Pawnee Rock during their grade school years. It saddens me some that all the freinds that I had In Pawnee Rock that there isn't hardly anyone around that I know anymore.

    Mike (Butch) Morris
    Lenexa, KS

    Pawnee Rock connection: Basically my whole life. Started 1st grade there and graduated in 1963. My grandparents were Johnny and Stella Morris. He was the fire chief there for years. They also had the little beer joint down by the highway. My parents were Verne and Lillian Morris. Dad was mayor of PR at one time.

    Remarks: Was born in Georgia but moved to Pawnee Rock when I was 6 months old, so I grew up, literally, in Pawnee Rock. Man, I had some good times there. Not many bad ones that I can remember. It was just great in the old days when everyone knew everyone and got along and worked and played together. I finally left in '63 when I enlisted in the Army. After 3 yrs there, I got married and we lived in Great Bend for a spell, before moving to Hays in 1970 for a stint in college. And then on to Kansas City in 1972, where I've been since. I spent 33 years with the United States Postal Service before retiring in 2005, and now do a little grounds-keeping for the apt. complex where we live. Life is good. Have had 3 rotator-cuff surgeries on both shoulders in the last year, but things are looking up. Guess I'm gonna have to start acting my age. Would love to hear from anyone close to our graduating class.

    Roger Hanhardt
    Hays, Kansas

    Pawnee Rock connection: I am Roger Hanhardt, Class of '64, PRHS.

    Remarks: My wife's name is Sally Jo. We live in Hays, KS, and I am the owner of a barber shop in town, and my wife is an elementary school secretary. I think of my times and friends at Pawnee Rock daily. I compiled a history book about the school in '98 and printed and sold 125 copies, which was two volumnes and 1,400 pages. Every graduate is pictured, all scores of ball games, all time records against foes, etc. I wish I could win the lottery; I would dedicate some money to buying the maintaining the school building. Such a wonderful campus in its day. And wonderful people. It is a big disappointment to me to see that thing sit there. Great gym. It would have made a wonderful private school. And the town is in bad shape also, and I see no way to stop that neglect. it does not have the same type of residents it had 40 years ago. The pride and will are gone, which is the way so many rural towns are now. But it doesn't diminish my great memories of a wonderful place. I am looking forward to teh reunion in August. We had a wonderful time last year.

    Dean and Nelda Smith Blackwell
    Scott City, Kansas 67871

    Pawnee Rock connection: Both of us graduated from Pawnee Rock H.S. Dean in '53, Nelda in '56. I (Dean) lived in Pawnee Rock from 1945 to 1954. Short stop at Hays, Ks, on to Air Force for 4 years. Back to Pawnee Rock in '58. Married Nelda in '59. We spent 9 years at Otis, Ks, where I worked for the Bureau of Mines, Otis Helium Plant. Couple of quick shuffles and on to Scott City, Ks, where I worked for several places and retired from Sunflower Electric and have just been too poor to move.

    Remarks: We have three great children, Deana, David and Lynette, and nine even better grandchildren! Now you know even more about me than I do.

    Barbara L. Schmidt
    Seattle, WA

    Pawnee Rock connection: I grew up on the farm of my parents (Paul and Bernice Schmidt) a mile west of the old salt plant northwest of Pawnee Rock and graduated from PRHS in 1969.

    Remarks: Our PRHS '69 class has been reconnecting thanks to our 2009 class reunion. If you knew us during our school years (September 1956 to May 1969) and would like to reconnect with anyone in our class, please feel free to send me an e-mail anytime and I will try to help.

    Ron Douglas
    Current address: Apache Junction, Arizona
    E-mail: PR-rdsailing@yahoo.com

    Pawnee Rock connection: Lived across the street from the old Grade School in the early 1950s and attended school there through the 6th grade before moving to Great Bend, where I graduated with the class of 1960.

    Remarks: I lived in Pawnee Rock with my parents, Ted and Frances, my sister Karen, and brother Rusty. My mother is still alive and very active at age 94 . . . she lives in California with my sister.

    Willard (Woody) Kasselman
    4675 Hwy 16
    Olsburg, KS 66520-9737

    Pawnee Rock connection: I was raised on a farm south of Pawnee Rock along Pickle Creek. My parents were Emmett and Norma and I had two brothers and a sister who all attended Pawnee Rock schools all 12 years. My older brother, Keith, graduated in 1956, my younger brother, Elmer, graduated in 1964 and my sister, Edna, graduated in 1969.

    Remarks: Following my graduation from Pawnee Rock in 1959 I went to Hutchinson Junior College where I played football. Following my graduation from Hutch, I transferred to Emporia State where I got my degree in education. I taught Industrial Arts and Driver Education for 34 years while also doing some coaching. Following my retirement I continued to work as a substitute teacher in the local school districts, and last school year 2009-2010 I completed my 40th year in education. I really enjoyed working with the kids. I also have a farm and run a small cow herd.

    I have been married to Luellen for 42 years and we were blessed with three children, 1 daughter and 2 sons. We live at Olsburg, which is 25 miles north of Manhattan, along the north end of Tuttle Creek Lake. We are very fortunate to have all three of our children living within 30 minutes of us. Our daughter, Kathy, her husband and three children (2 boys and 1 girl) live in Leonardville, our son, Karl, and his wife live in Manhattan and our youngest son Kraig, his wife and three children (2 girls and 1 boy) live east of us about three miles.

    Corey Clawson

    Mailing: Det 2 607 MMS, Unit 2119 Box 1458
    APO, AP 96275

    Currently residing in: Suwon Air Base, South Korea

    Pawnee Rock connection: I grew up in PR and lived there until I was 9 years old (1979-1989). My older sister, Jamie Clawson, also attended school there. My father, Jim Clawson, worked at the Co-op doing vehicle maintenance. He passed away in 1989. His good friend was Boe Levingston (which I saw someone in this post who had connections to). Thus, my good friend was his son, Jason, who I have never run in to in all the times I've gone back to visit my family. I have seen his sister, Robin, a couple times on my travels back to Great Bend. My grandfather, is AB Clawson, who ran the Pawnee Garage.

    Remarks: It always amazes me to go back to PR and see how much it has changed. Each time Ive gone back, I see less and less people out and about. I remember as a kid, there were always lots of us running around town, and I have some great memories from those times. I moved to Texas with my mother after my father passed away. I joined the Air Force in 1999, and have lived in Korea (3 times now), Japan, multiple places in the states, and I'll be heading to Italy in a few months. Feel free to drop me a line. It was great to see all the posts, especially the ones from people I remember.

    Jim Meyer
    Longview, Washington

    Pawnee Rock connection: Grandparents are I.W. and Minnie Harper, who owned a gas station in town. Other relatives include Buel and Doris Harper, Ted and Frances Douglas, and Rita and Gene Bowman.

    Remarks: Retired probation and parole officer for the state of Washington. (Read more here.)

    Chuck Meyer
    Fullerton, California

    Pawnee Rock connection: Grandparents are I.W. and Minnie Harper, who owned a gas station in town. Other relatives include Buel and Doris Harper, Ted and Frances Douglas, and Rita and Gene Bowman.

    Remarks: Assistant principal at a high school and pastor of a Lutheran church in Burbank.

    Debra (Levingston) Ernst
    Hoisington, Kansas

    Pawnee Rock connection: I grew up in Pawnee Rock. My parents were Bill and Bonnie Levingston, my brothers are Boe and Joe and my sister is Sandy. I spent my childhood in Pawnee Rock and went all through school there. I have a lot of memories of Pawnee Rock.

    Remarks: I live in Hoisington now. I have 4 kids and 11 grandkids now. My husband Mike works for the railroad Union Pacific out of Salina. We love to travel and camp and do a lot of fishing when we get the chance.

    Judy (Hagerman) Bowman
    3231 S.E. Shadybrook Lane
    Tecumseh, Kansas 66542

    Pawnee Rock connection: I am a graduate of PRHS Class of 1966. I was formerly married to Brent Bowman, son of Dorothy and E. Alan Bowman of Pawnee Rock. I attended school in PR from 8th grade through high school.

    Remarks: This past summer I enjoyed a high school reunion held at Ed and Karen Crosby's residence. This was even more enjoyable for me since Ed and Karen live on the farm that I grew up on. It was nice to see so many people I had not seen in years.

    Gale Morgan
    6951 Beechnut Drive
    Racine, WI 53402

    Pawnee Rock connection: My parents (Bill and Ailsa Morgan), my two brothers (Dave and Verlin) and I lived in Dundee and I went to school in Pawnee Rock from kindergarten in 1961/62 until they closed the high school in 1972. After college and living in Manhattan for 7 or 8 years, I moved to Wisconsin in 1987 and have lived here since with the exception of about 18 months that I lived in Rogers, Arkansas. I think the last time I drove through Pawnee Rock was in 2004 on my way to see my mother, who lives in Larned.

    Remarks: I am married and have two daughters. The oldest is not 30 and the youngest is 2 1/2. I have worked for SC Johnson for the past 21 years. I live in Caledonia. where I am a Village Trustee, our version of a city council. I live within a mile of Lake Michigan about 20 minutes south of Milwaukee and about an hour north of Chicago.

    Jennifer Ball-Flock
    410 Pawnee
    PO Box 34
    Pawnee Rock 67567

    Pawnee Rock connection: I grew up here in Pawnee Rock since 1987. I was born in Europe. My parents are Dewey Jr. and Linda Ball. My grandparents are Dewey and Louise Ball. My grandparents lived here in Pawnee Rock for some time. They had a bee business and sold honey. I went to school here in Pawnee Rock k-8th grade til they closed the school in 1995, I believe. I was raised on the south side of the highway by the grain elevators.

    Remarks: I am now married to Clifton Flock, a native of Macksville. We have three children, who we are planning to raise here in Pawnee Rock. This town was amazing growing up in. Also, Pawnee Rock has a lot of history to it.

    Rick Clawson
    3517 Colby Creek Avenue
    Las Vegas, Nevada 89081

    Pawnee Rock connection: I am the son of Earl and Elaine Clawson. I am the brother of Jeff, Jill, Randy, and Cindy. I attended school at Pawnee Rock from K-9th grade and was in the last 9th-grade class at Pawnee Rock's school in 1974.

    Remarks: I am currently planning a class reunion for my class and am looking for several classmates. They are Tony Kassleman, Kim Myers, and David Bowman. If anyone knows their whereabouts have them contact me at my e-mail address. I also would enjoy hearing from others I knew during that period as well.

    Jeanette Corbett
    1154 East Barton County Road
    Ellinwood, KS

    Pawnee Rock connection: I am the granddaughter of Frank and Doris Wilson. My mom, Barbara Wilson Ater, grew up in Pawnee Rock with her brothers, Bill, Keith and Randy. Randy settled in the family home when he got married, but now lives on a farm between Pawnee Rock and Larned. My great uncle was Willard Wilson, who owned the welding shop on Main Street. I grew up in Shaeffer, KS, where my mother still resides, and went to school in Pawnee Rock from 6th grade through 9th grade. My mom's class (1957) was the first to graduate from the "new" Pawnee Rock High School building. Her little brother, my uncle Randy, was the last senior class to graduate. And I was in the last 9th grade class to be housed in the building. We all went our separate ways through high school and I landed in Larned. I remember hanging out in Pawnee Rock during Junior High. Debbie Lynn, Cheryl Unruh and I were very close during the 7th and 8th grades. Since I lived "in the country" I spent much time in town with my friends.

    Remarks: I married Larry Whisnant in 1978 and we had three children, Jason, Jerod and Chelsea. We divorced in 1988. I married Jim Corbett on April 14, 2007. We now have a blended family of four grown boys, Jason Whisnant, Jason Corbett, Jerod Whisnant, Jared Corbett and one grown daughter, Chelsea Whisnant. We also have three granddaughters, Brianna and Raelin (Jason W.'s daughters), Cailey (Jerod W's daughter), one grandson, Jonathan (Jerod W's son) and one grandson who is due this month, Brody (Jared C's son). All four boys live in and around Great Bend. The Whisnant boys are cartographers and the Corbett boys work in agriculture. Chelsea lives in Topeka and teaches 4th grade in the Kaw Valley school district.

    I'd love to hear from anybody with ties to Pawnee Rock.

    Kris Myers
    221 Cottonwood Drive
    Lincoln, NE 68510

    Pawnee Rock connection: Grew up in Pawnee Rock, the son of Richard (Moby Dick) and Pat Myers and brother of Richard and Lori.

    Remarks: Kris and wife Kathy come back to Kansas for the holidays and always visit The Rock. Kris attends a Chiefs game each fall with his friends from Pawnee Rock.

    Jill Haremza
    1302 Long Blvd.
    Garden City, Ks 67845

    Pawnee Rock connection: Grew up in Pawnee Rock, the daughter of Earl and Elaine Clawson, and siblings are Jeff, Randy, Rick, and Cindy. Moved back to Pawnee Rock and lived in the house that George and Susie Unruh grew up in on the corner at 601 Santa Fe and Houck. My parents lived in the house down the street. Mom cooked at the school then when my kids were there.

    Remarks: I have often wondered where everyone has ended up and I really had no way of even imagining of how we could all get in contact with each other. It was neat to read the messages from others and would like to send them a response of someone they knew. I have so many memories of P.R. and it seems like it was just yesterday that we were all out pounding the streets having fun.

    Dean McFann
    Scott City, KS

    Pawnee Rock connection: Dean McFann one of the 7 children of T.L. McFann and June (Rogers) McFann. My Mother is the daughter of Cal and Elsie (Sayler) Rogers of Pawnee Rock. My grandparents owned Pawnee Station. I lived on a family farm near Albert. I attended school at Pawnee Rock 1st grade thru 11th grade (Jr.) year. But, went to Macksville my Sr. year to graduate ... after Pawnee Rock school was closed.

    Remarks: I married Marilyn Jones of Dighton in 1978. We have 2 children: a son, Carey, and a daughter, Rebekah. We currently make our home in Scott City. I have many fond memories of Pawnee Rock. Let's stay in touch.

    Robert Schmidt
    Roswell, GA

    Pawnee Rock connection: My PR connection is that I am the son of Earl and the late Maxlyn Schmidt, both former teachers in the PR and Larned school systems. Maxlyn was the daughter of PR residents Max Smith and Effie Unruh. My Dad, a transplant from the Newton area, still lives on the farm north of town. My sister Ann and I attended PR schools from K to 12 and grew up in the Bergthal Church.

    Remarks: My wife of 36 years and I now live in Roswell, GA. I never in my wildest dreams thought this Mennonite farm boy from Kansas would be riding the train every day to work in downtown Atlanta, where I'm the director of Planned Giving for Habitat for Humanity International. I'd be interested in hearing from classmates from the class of '69, and others.

    Ralph Gillispie
    Burley, ID

    Pawnee Rock connection: Lived in Pawnee Rock from mid-1935 to mid-1937 and attended first and second grade. Grandfather Ira Cheney was a blacksmith in Pawnee Rock, and his mother's brother, Bill Cheney, was the section foreman for the Santa Fe Railroad.

    Remarks: Does anyone have knowledge of Terry Keeley, Donna Jean Carpenter, Elmeleda Mae Houser . . . just a couple names that I have never forgotten over the years . . . and of course, Ms. Franklin . . . where they are, alive, etc.?

    Tim Sawatsky
    North Newton, KS

    Pawnee Rock connection: Our family moved to Pawnee Rock in 1953 and moved from Pawnee Rock in 1962. All of us siblings went to Pawnee Rock schools and graduated from the high school, except me. I completed my senior year at Newton High School. My father, Victor, was the pastor of Bergthal Mennonite Church.

    Remarks: I usually get back to Pawnee Rock at least once a year just to look over the town and go through the cemeteries. That brings back many memories. I have never attended a class reunion although I would like to very much -- I've never received information about them.

    My wife and I now live in North Newton, KS. We have four grown children and nine grandchildren. I would enjoy hearing from anyone who remembers me.

    Robert Givens

    Rodney Walker
    Rt 1, Box 27
    Hennesseey, OK 73742

    Pawnee Rock connection: I went to 7th and 8th grade at PR I believe in '81 and '82. Went back there just couple of days ago with my family, to learn school has been closed for about 10 years. Have a lot of good memories and friends from a long time ago. I am currently employed with the Hennessey Police Dept. as chief of police.

    Leonard E. Unruh
    68 Blue Mountain Drive
    Maumelle, AR 72113

    Pawnee Rock connection: My dad (Elmer W.) was one of four sons of Benjamin H. and Carrie (Caroline Myrtle) Unruh north of Pawnee Rock. The four sons are Elmer W., Victor L., Benjamin E., and Albert L. (Buck). My dad graduated from Pawnee Rock High in 1939. My dad lives in Enterprise, KS, and has been married to Lorene H. Goedecke from Oklahoma for over 60 years. Uncle Victor died during WWII. Uncle Ben ran the COOP elevator for a number of years. He now is living in Woodard, OK. Uncle Buck is living in New Mexico.

    I have two brothers (LeRoy W. and Leon M.) and one sister (Dorothy L. Fager). We spent time in Pawnee Rock during the holidays when we were growing up in Otis.

    One of my dad's half brothers, Alvin and Sophie (Koehn), lived in Pawnee Rock for a number years before moving to Greensburg, KS.

    Bruce Kraisinger

    Pawnee Rock connection: I attended Pawnee Rock High School from 8th grade through high school graduating in 1971.

    Remarks: I really enjoyed my years of going to school at Pawnee Rock expecially the sports in Junior High and High School. We had a pretty good football team my senior year and probably should of got to play for the state championship, but that's another story. After graduating from Pawnee Rock High School I attended Barton County Junior College on a track scholarship and played basketball one semester.

    My track coach, Jack Bowman, who by the way graduated from Pawnee Rock also, was an excellent coach, but Coach Nagy, the basketball coach, well that's another story! After graduating Barton County in 1973 I then attended Fort Hays State University on a track scholarship. At Hays I ran on the mile relay team, long jumped, triple jumped, and pole vaulted. Coach Alex Francis was my coach, and boy could he run you till you couldn't go anymore, but he knew how to make you the best that you could be and I still hold a lot of respect for him. By the way, Coach Bowman was the same way at Barton County, and I still credit him and Robert Stone, my high school principal, with convincing me to go to college and making me who I am today.

    One of the goals I set at Hays was to be an All-American in the pole vault, which I accomplished by placing fifth at the NAIA National Indoor meet my senior year in Greensboro, North Carolina. I give the Lord all the credit for helping me reach that goal!

    At Barton County I met and dated Kristi Kirkpatrick (GBHS 1971), and after we both graduated from FHSU we were married that summer of 1975. We have two children, Kip, our son, who graduated from Washburn University, and now lives in Lawrence and works for Terracon in Kansas City. Our daughter, Lindsay, attended KSU for two years and then tranferred to Kansas Wesleyan University and is now a senior this year, 2007.

    I can't begin to tell you all there is to say about my family except to say that the Lord has blessed me with the most sweetest wife and best children I could of ever imagined. Through God's Love we have made it through good times and bad times, and he has always been there by our side. So in closing I would like to say the best thing that ever happened in my life was when I gave my life to the Lord and accepted Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior. He is my best friend and always will be.

    We live in Salina, KS, now and look forward to hearing from other Pawnee Rock graduates at any time!

    Anna Marie McGuire

    Pawnee Rock connection: I went to Pawnee Rock from the 2nd grade at the old grade school till my sophomore year, moving to Wichita in 1957. My mother graduated from Pawnee Rock and my sister Ernee Lou McGuire graduated from there in 1957.

    Remarks: I retired from McDonell Douglas-Boeing in 2000. I have 3 children and 8 grandchildren. After my husband died I reverted back to my maiden name. I live 6 months at 2386 Porpoise Dr., Lake Havasu, AZ 86404, and 6 months at 1545 Diane Dr., La Verne, CA 91750. I am a sunbird not a snowbird.

    M. Leon Miller

    Pawnee Rock connection: I grew up in Pawnee Rock, graduating from high school in 1951. My parents were "Cobb" and Elsie Miller. Cobb owned the Miller Oil Company, selling Mobil products to local farmers and townspeople from the 1920s until his death in 1967. My sister, Corinne Wilson, graduated in 1943 and has lived in Hays, Kansas, since 1951. Jerry Wilson, her husband of 51 years, was a realtor in Hays and died in 1998.

    Remarks: I have lived in Dallas, Texas, since moving here in 1960 after graduating from the University of Kansas School of Architecture with a bachelor's degree. I retired from practicing architecture in 2002 after being in the profession for over 40 years. My wife of 45 years and I have three grown children who have spent most of their lives in the entertainment industry. We're big Dallas Mavericks fans but think the Dallas Cowboys are on an extended fruitless search to reach the Super Bowl glories of the past.

    Justin W. Allen

    Pawnee Rock connection: We lived in Pawnee Rock from about 1978 to 1988, the last 6 years of that at 101 Rock St. I haven't seen "home" since 1988 as I went into the Military and moved away.

    Remarks: I am interested in finding out about homes and land for sale there as well as the local job market. I currently live and work in Colorado but would love to find myself back "home."

    Sandra (Cooper) Harris
    18 N. Willison Rd.
    Hutchinson, KS 67501

    Pawnee Rock connection: I was born and raised in Pawnee Rock. My parents were Gregg and Louise Cooper. My dad was the custodian of the schools there until they moved to California in 1960. My grandparents lived there also. My dad's folks were Ollie and Gertrude Cooper and they owned the drug store there at one time. My great-grandmother was Emma Ross. All of my relatives lived there at one time. Don Ross is a cousin of mine. Gayle Peters was my dad's sister.

    Remarks: I am married to Bob Harris and we have three grown children, and eight grandchildren.

    Kay (Peters) Steed
    Edgerton, KS

    Pawnee Rock connection: My ties to Pawnee Rock are long and many. I'm the great granddaughter of Oliver Gregg Cooper and the granddaughter of Albert and Effie (Huffman) Peters. My aunt Vida (Arnold) Ross , my grandmother Gertrude (Arnold) Coopers' sister, is the mother of Don Ross, who submitted many pictures for the web site. Many cousins still live in the area: Reed Peters, Joe Bowman, June McConnaughhay, Doyle Foster and Velda (Foster) Pfister being a few. My mother was Gayle Cooper and Dad, Jimmie Peters, both born and raised in Pawnee Rock. We visit a couple times a year and love the area's history.

    Remarks: I live in Edgerton, KS, with my husband and we have 3 grown kids and 4 grandkids in the area as well. Would love to hear from friends of the family or long lost relatives.

    Teresa (Shields) Manuel
    130 Orion Street
    Golden, CO 80401

    Pawnee Rock connection: My parents are Wanda and Gail Shields. My older brothers are Rick, Danny, and Randy Skelton and my younger brother is Bill Shields. My friends I used to hang around with were Sarah Stimatze, Amy Deckert, and Rhonda Mason.

    Remarks: I have a wonderful husband of 20 years and 3 grown kids and 4 grandkids. We moved to Colorado in 1969-70 after my Dad had received a job offer at Coors Brewery in Golden. My Dad passed away New Years 1989 so sudden in his sleep. My Mother is doing well. Everyone still lives within 30 miles of each other.

    Pat Croff
    20083 Sunrise Drive
    Redding, CA 96003

    Pawnee Rock connection: I am the youngest of the Paul and Gladys Wycoff family. I started school in Pawnee Rock, went through the 7th grade, we moved to Bremerton during my 8th grade, moved back to Pawnee Rock for my freshman and sophomore years, junior year in Radium, and graduated from Compton Junior College in l949.

    Remarks: I have a son, David, wife Peggy, son Random. I have a daughter, Cheryl, husband Bill, children Shelby and Andy. My companion's name is Ray. We live in Redding, CA, which is about a 3-hour drive north of Sacramento. We live out in the country on about 1.4 acres with lots of trees and two great indoor cats, and love it here. We would love to have anyone from Pawnee Rock come for a visit. We have a 5th wheel and do lots of traveling every year. I was an owner/operator of a 500-acre farm in Northern California for 25 years, a bartender, a cook at a hospital, and a Realtor, then I retired.

    Bob Wycoff
    1777 Paradise Lane
    Santa Rosa, CA 95401

    Pawnee Rock connection: My family lived on the corner of Rock and Santa Fe Street. I attended elementary school just across the street and had to walk two blocks to the high school. My twin brother, Bill, and older brother Miles and I moved to California just after Christmas in l947. After working a couple of years and then serving in the Navy I attented college and taught for 33 years. Most of our family eventually moved to California but we still think of Pawnee Rock as our home town. My grandmother, Martha Ewing, lived just east of the Methodist Church.

    Earl and Janice Schmidt
    Pawnee Rock

    Remarks: We would like to hear from former classmates or anyone who lived in PR.

    Marsha (McFann) Bouker
    Hays, KS

    Remarks: I live in Hays, after living in Ness City for a long time. Since both of my grandparents are gone, I don't get to the fair city anymore. I would love to hear from the Pawnee Rock folks.

    Steve Ross
    Eudora, KS

    Pawnee Rock connection: Attended school 3rd thru 7th, left for 8th and came back for 9th grade. My roots are in the Pawnee Rock area. Most of my relatives on both sides resided in the Pawnee Rock at one time or another. I now reside in Eudora, KS.

    Julietha Jones
    Great Bend, KS 67530

    Pawnee Rock connection: My ancestors were from Pawnee Rock and I have some relatives that live there still. I also have some cousins that grew up there, and they both now have their own websites about Pawnee Rock.

    Remarks: Whenever my mom takes us to Pawnee Rock for a sight seeing of the important places in our famliy's past, it is very educational for me, and an eye-opening experience, because I can just imagine what life was like then, and compare it to life now, for me.

    Laramie Unruh Jr.
    401 E. 6th Street
    Valley Center, KS 67147-2620

    Pawnee Rock connection: I grew up in and around Pawnee Rock and attended school through 6th grade. I also have a certain fondness for the owner of this fine website :-)

    Remarks: I too would enjoy hearing from any of the people I went to school with.

    Virgil and Joan Smith
    l6246 W. Silver Falls Drive
    Surprise, AZ 85374

    Pawnee Rock connection: Joan (Spreier) graduated in 1946 and Virgil graduated in 1945.

    Remarks: We would enjoy hearing from anyone who attended school when we did.

    Don Ross
    Dodge City, KS

    Leon Unruh
    Eagle River, Alaska

    Pawnee Rock connection: I grew up in Pawnee Rock and get back every year or so. You've already read a lot about me in the Too Long in the Wind and Who We Are sections, so I won't go over that again.

    Remarks: Sign up, everybody. I've heard from folks in their 70s and folks in their 20s. Readers from a dozen states check in every week, and they might be wondering whatever happened to you. Give 'em a chance to find out.

    Copyright 2013 Leon Unruh

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