Archive for January, 2012


Hi everybody.  Since I am new around here, let me introduce myself.  I am the feet in the middle of the picture on the left.  What do ya think?  You probably have never seen anything like this on “the Chronicles” before.  Let me explain.  I have a name to attach to those feet you are looking at and it is Carver McLin Pank.  You are probably saying at this point, “so what?”.  Well, my Great Grandad or as he likes me to call him, “Granddad the Great”, writes regularly on the Chronicles and since he talks so much about it, the FGHS Alumni Association, and Marshall University,   I asked him if I could give it a try.  He said, “sure, give it your best shot”.  He loves me so much and as a result he is pretty easy, so I probably should have gone for a new pedal car, bike, or maybe a life time pass to Toys R Us while I was asking.  It’s not to late though, there will be other opportunities.  Let me tell you a little bit about my life so far.  It has been pretty short so far  but really eventful.

It all started about ten months ago in my mommy’s tummy.  I am not sure just how all that works, but I know that there was God and a bunch of angels that had a hand in getting me where I am today.   I just sort of casually hung around there with not much to do but just grow some and stay healthy.  I know that I had angels visit me often and I am sure God kept an eye on my welfare.  Every now and then I could hear voices and they would be talking about me, and occasionally I would give my Mommy a little kick just to remind her that “hey, I am still here and doing ok”.  There wasn’t much else to do but kick occasionally and catch some zzz’s.  They found out pretty early that I was a boy, but heck, I knew that all along. 

Every now and then I would go to the doctor with my Mommy.  Like I had a choice?   The doctor would listen to my heart and do other stuff like take pictures, they were called a long name that I can’t pronounce yet, and check Mommy to make sure she was healthy.  My Mommy even asked the doctor once if she could go to Disney World.  The doctor said sure but you can’t ride roller coasters and those scary rides.  Sure enough, we (my Dad, two of my grandparents, and my Grandad the Great) and my Mommy of course, got on a plane and simply flew down there for a whole week.  WOW! the plane ride was so exciting.  I heard a lot of talk about the exciting rides while we were at Disney World and really wanted to ride some, but the doctor had said no, so I guess I will have to wait until next time.  My Grandad the Great said that this trip was on his bucket list and I haven’t found out what that means yet, but I am sure that he will tell me sometime.  He tells me lots of things but mostly how much he loves me.

After coming back from Disney, it was time to celebrate something called Thanksgiving.  I thought it was all about me, but found out that it was all about when the Pilgrims came to our country, eating turkey, and pumpkin pie.  This is all a little confusing to me but I am sure that I will figure out what it is all about someday.  I know it is a day for visiting and for my Mommy and Dad to do a lot of eating  and stuff like that.  I know we did a lot of travelling and visiting family during that week.  Phew! even I got tired and I really didn’t have to do anything other than just go where my Mommy went.

Along about this time I began to hear a lot of conversation about when is the baby due, do you think he will be on time, who do you think he will look like, are you feeling well, and stuff like that.  I even heard the word hospital a few times.  I began to think what is all this chatter about?  But, being a bit lazy and laid back I didn’t pay a lot of attention to it.  One morning I awakened to my Mommy and Dad going out to breakfast and they talked about  going to the hospital.  There was that word “hospital” again.  Maybe it meant we were going for ice cream or some special treat that my Mom likes after breakfast.  Sounded like a good idea to me.  Maybe it meant that since this was December 22 that we were going Christmas shopping.  I know Christmas had something to do with God, so it had to be good.

Suddenly, late that afternoon, my Mom and Dad loaded a bag in the car and we went for a ride.  The word hospital came up again and I thought, “this is it, we really are going for ice cream this time”, but no, that didn’t happen.  We ended up at this big building, and the next thing I knew we were in a room and my Mommy was lying down and being hooked up to all sorts of wires and stuff and they even were listening to my hear beat.  I know that two of my grandmothers, my aunt, and my Daddy were there in the room with us.  I thought, WOW! why all of the attention?  All of this and still no ice cream.  I am beginning to think that there is more to this thing than I had first thought.

It is now Friday, December 23 and now I know something strange is going on.  Two more of my granddads  plus Grandad the Great arrived and they all gathered in Mommys room.  Later on that day the florist brought flowers and there are other little gifts around so it is really beginning to look like some event is about to happen and from all of the attention I began to suspect it involves Mommy and me.  My goodness, are we about to be on TV, because there are a lot of little TVs hooked up to the ends of the wires and stuff with little lines moving up and down their screens and beeping going on plus nurses coming in real often and checking stuff and using words that I havent heard before.   I do believe that something exciting is about to happen.  It is becoming a little difficult for me to catch up on my sleep so I am thinking maybe I just should get out of here and go somewhere and lie down for a while.

Some of the talk that I hear says something about 9 PM and some other stuff that I don’t understand.  Sure enough some people who I had not seen before show up and take my Mommy and me out of our room and down the hall, bed and all.  Maybe this is the trip to get ice cream.  We are wheeled in a room with bright lights and a lot of people walking around with funny clothes on and masks over their faces.  Definitely not an ice cream store, but more like a western movie with outlaws and stuff.  I knew it, we really are going to be in a movie, but about that time my Dad walks in with all of these funny  clothes and a mask on so I know it is not a movie because he wouldn’t be an outlaw.  He would be one of the good guys, and then all of the masked people got busy and went to work.

Now all of a sudden these bright lights came on and somebody was picking me up and holding me.  And then I saw her.  My MOMMY!  How did I know?  Hey, I didn’t just spend nine months getting stupid.  And there was my Dad.  How did I know that?  Well, because I was instantly in love with him, so it had to be.  Then they gave me to my Mommy and it was the greatest feeling in my whole short life.  She held me and I could tell that she really loved me and that this was one relationship I was really going to like.

Shortly thereafter we were in the bed with wheels and heading back down the hallway for our room.  And then we passed this group of people and they were all smiling and some with little tears of happiness.  I knew that this must be my grandparents and aunt that I had heard in our room earlier.  I knew one of them was my Grandad the Great because he had a beard and looked just SLIGHTLY older that the others.  I could tell that all of them were just dying to get their hands on me, but first I had to go to our room and have my first real meal.  You would think that for your first real meal they might give you a little steak or something and at the very least some ICE CREAM.  But no, just some milk.  But it was special and so good and I am thinking that if I had know that it was like this out here, I might have shown up a little earlier.

Ok, everybody, take a look on the left.  That is ME!  If I had known I was going to be a featured picture, I might have dressed a little differently but since I was only a couple of hours old this will have to do, plus it was Christmas eve already and as you can see I am trying to get some sleep so I can enjoy Santa’s visit.  I am told that he will be here later tonight and I am looking forward to a stack of toys.  Maybe, ice cream.  Really though, I already have my Christmas gift.  It is a loving family and a Mommy and Dad and Jesus that saw me through all of the difficulties of just getting here.  I am a little embarrassed at not having a shirt on but since I am a boy, that’s ok, boys can do that.  I am going to get to cuddle some with my Mom today and she is going to feed me more milk.  I have a feeling that I am going to see a lot of milk over the next few months but she says that will make me grow.  Hey, I am pretty good-sized already.  Twenty two inches tall.  I will be a great 6’5″ basketball guard at the University of Kentucky when I really grow up.  If Kentucky doesn’t want me, my Granddad the Great says he knows some people at Marshall and they  would be happy to get me.  we’ll see.

Here I am again folks.  I am four weeks (if you are counting on your fingers as I do) that is four fingers.  I finally got home from the hospital on the day after Christmas and as you can see I got some cool clothes.  Christmas in the hospital is a “bummer’, no ice cream but plenty of milk.  That seems as if that is all I eat now.  Is there a milk surplus or something, anybody heard anything about that?  It must be good for me because I am totally outgrowing my clothes but my Mommy likes to shop and I will be cool in that area.  I found out when I got home that I have a couple of buddies living with us.  My dogs.  One is Zep and he is a big fan of mine.  He likes to kiss my ear every now and then.  It tickles.  My other dog is named Fergie and she can be a bit cranky at times.  She likes me  also and kisses my ear when Zep does.  Like me, they do a lot of sleeping doing the day.  I guess that is why when things are going well and laid back, that they call it “living the dog’s life”.

Ok, here I am again.  Doing my second favorite thing, sleeping.  My Granddad the Great visited me last week and spent a lot of time holding me, feeding me, and burping me.  He says that next visit he will learn to change my diapers.  I can hardly wait.  I will have a little surprise for him.  I am a little to small for underwear but that is probably going to be my next goal in life.  He says some funny things.  I do admit to an occasional gas problem,  you know what I mean.  When he holds me and I turn red and shut my eyes and grunt a bit, he always says, “go ahead and let her rip”.  Funny, but it does make sense and I always feel better afterward. 

Well everybody, you have met me and I hope someday that I can meet all of my Grandad the Great’s friends.  He really likes you guys a lot.  I may even get something orange and black (FGHS) and I already have some Marshall green socks.  If I have seemed a little vain in my writing it just because I am so happy to be here.  Untill another time, GO HERD>


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It is with sadness that we report the passing of Rose Huff, wife of FGHS Alumni Association member Don Huff.  Don is a member of the class of “57”.  I know that all would join in sympathy and prayer for Don and his family members.

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The following was sent to me by Bill Wellman.  I thought it expressed life so well that there may be others that might enjoy it as well as I.  It most certainly  gives one, both young and old, a lot to consider as we progress through this allotted time that we are given on earth.

 And then it is winter.

You know… time has a way of moving quickly and catching you unaware of the passing years.
It seems just yesterday that I was young, just married and embarking on my new life with my mate. And yet in a way, it seems like eons ago, and I wonder where all the years went.
I know that I lived them all…
And I have glimpses of how it was back then and of all my hopes and dreams.
But, here it is — the winter of my life and it catches me by surprise.
How did I get here so fast? Where did the years go and where did my youth go?
I remember well…
seeing older people through the years and thinking that those older people were years away from me and that winter was so far off that I could not fathom it or imagine fully what it would be like.
But, here it is… my friends are retired and getting gray, they move slower and I see an older person now. Some are in better and some worse shape than me, but, I see the great change.
Not like the ones that I remember who were young and vibrant…
but, like me, their age is beginning to show and we are now those older folks that we used to see and never thought we’d be.  Each day now, I find that just getting a shower is a real target for the day!
And taking a nap is not a treat anymore… it’s mandatory!  Cause if I don’t on my own free will, I just fall asleep where I sit!
And so…
now I enter into this new season of my life — unprepared for all the aches and pains and the loss of strength and ability to go and do things that I wish I had done but never did!!
But, at least I know, that though the winter has come, and I’m not sure how long it will last … this I know, that when it’s over…it’s over.
Yes , I have regrets. There are things I wish I hadn’t done, things I should have done,  but indeed, there are many things I’m happy to have done.
It’s all in a lifetime.
So, if you’re not in your winter yet, let me remind you that it will be here faster than you think.
So, whatever you would like to accomplish in your life please do it quickly!
Don’t put things off too long! Life goes by quickly.  So, do what you can today, as you can never be sure whether this is your winter or not!
You have no promise that you will see all the seasons of your life…
so, live for today and say all the things that you want your loved ones to remember, and hope that they appreciate and love you for all the things that you have done for them in all the years past!!
“Life is a gift to you.   The way you live your life is your gift to those who come after.  Make it a fantastic one.”






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Back in the early fall of 2010 there were some postings and replies  regarding  the “Wildcat Petroglyphs” located near Fort Gay in Wayne County, WV.   Today, I received the following information from Terry Wellman.  Anyone wishing to view the petroglyphs may contact Terry and he indicates that he would be happy to guide them there.  Our thanks to Terry for the information.

Good afternoon,
I have been scrolling back through your older posts and came across one concerning the “Wildcat Petroglyphs”. I believe it was Fred Reid that commented he had no idea where these may be. I would be more than happy to guide Mr. Reid, or anyone interested, to this location, as it is located on property now owned by my sister and her husband. They are very accessible, mere yards away from U.S. 52 and I can share a little more information about the research that has been done on these carvings. I have really been enjoying reading the posts about the early days of Fort Gay and the pictures of our hometown.
Have A Great Day!
Terry Wellman
State Electric Supply Co, Inc
Mining Department
Fax 304-522-9624

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Yesterday, Friday 13th. was a cold day where I live and weather like that does not provide a lot of motivation to involve myself in outdoor activities.  I can only absorb so much information from the “talking heads” on TV and I didn’t have anything that I wished to read at the time so, the question came up, “what to do”.  Not much left but to surf the internet.

As most know, the Huntington, WV area suffered a terrible tragedy back on November 14, 1970.  The tragedy was of course the crash of a charter aircraft carrying the Marshall University football team resulting in the loss of 75 lives.  I remember the event and read a great deal about it at the time.  As with all else, over time memories fade and I had forgotten a lot of the information surrounding the crash, events that followed, and the resulting NTSB investigation and their findings.

I, as many others do, daily read the Huntington Herald-Dispatch newspaper on-line.  It helps me keep in touch with the area where I grew up and continue to have many friends and relatives.  For a long time there has been a space on the bar across the top of the web site with a link titled MU Crash.  I had never really looked at it, so I decided yesterday to see what it was all about.  It contains volumes of information, pictures, old newspapers, and data that I had never seen.  It is archived in an easily followed pattern.  Included in the data is the transcript of the cockpit voice recorder from the plane crash, the NTSB findings, many pictures, testimony, etc.

I would commend the Herald-Dispatch for their efforts in developing and maintaining the archived information.  Sometime, if you wish to look at the past and read in detail facts regarding the tragedy, go to the Huntington Herald-Dispatch web site and plan on spending some time reading and looking at that which surrounds one of the greatest tragedies to occur in the area.

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And, there she is, OUR PATTY.  I believe the occasion for Patty delivering an obviously “fiery address” was a recent event at Berea College at which Patty was invited to attend and to address the group, quite an honor.  In the event you can’t read what is written under the picture, it says “an advanced old woman is uncontrollable by any earthly force.”  I think most of us would agree that is a perfect description of Patty with the exception of being old.  Perhaps in her “golden years’ but totally youthful in her thinking and activities.  Congratulations Patty.

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The New Years holiday is here.  This is the time of year that we could do away with calendars.  Why?  Because you only have to turn on the TV each and every day and there will be a football bowl game on the tube televising from some place warm.  Usually there will be two or three “experts” in the broadcast booth “analyzing” the game and second guessing the coaches and officials on the field.  They usually put some poor young lady down on the sidelines doing the dirty work of trying to get the coaches to tell them what is wrong with their team and how he is going to correct it at halftime.  PULEESE; do they think we at home are dummies.  The last person in the world these coaches want to talk to at half time is a cute girl seeking their analysis.  Get the “dudes” in the booth to figure it out. 

I think this year we are beginning to see the effect of to many bowl games.  The games I have watched to this point have not been sell outs.  If you watched the Orange Bowl last night, featuring West Virginia vs. Clemson you will know what I mean.   There were many empty seats and sections.  I remember Orange Bowl games in the past and they were always sold out.  Neither team last night sold their ticket allocations.  I believe this year that there were or are four weeks in which there are bowl games.

Being football bowl game season got me to thinking.  Does everyone remember Andy Griffith of television and movie fame.  Back in the 1950’s when television was young and comedians would put funny monologues on records, Andy Griffith recorded one that was titled, “what it wuz, wuz football”.  He was sometimes known back then as Deacon Andy Griffin.  He depicted someone who had never seen or heard of football going to a football game.  His description would have fitted just about the way it would have been if the game had been played in our cow pasture on Queens Creek. 

I had the good fortune of seeing Andy in a show titled “No Time for Sergeants” that appeared at the Keith-Albee theater in Huntington as part of the Marshall College (yeah, that is what it was called then) Artists Series in the late 1950’s.  I thought that since it is football season that you might like to read his description of the game those many years ago.  I hope it still brings a smile to your face. Enjoy.

It was back last October, I believe it was. We was gong to hold a tent service off at this college town, and we got there about dinner time on Saturday. Different ones of us thought that we ought to get us a mouthful to eat before we set up the tent. So we got off the truck and followed this little bunch of people through this small little bitty patch of woods there, and we came up on a big sign that says, “Get something to Eat Here.” I went up and got me two hot dogs and a big orange drink, and before I could take a mouthful of that food, this whole raft of people come up around me and got me to where I couldn’t eat nothing, up like, and I dropped my big orange drink. Well, friends, they commenced to move, and there wasn’t so much that I could do but move with them. Well, we commenced to go through all kinds of doors and gates and I don’t know what- all, and I looked up over one of ’em and it says, “North Gate.” We kept on a-going through there, and pretty soon we come up on a young boy and he says, “Ticket, please.” And I says, “Friend, I don’t have a ticket; I don’t even know where it is that I’m a-going!” Well, he says, “Come on out as quick as you can.” And I says, “I’ll do ‘er; I’ll turn right around the first chance I get.”

Well, we kept on a-moving through there, and pretty soon everybody got where it was that they was a-going, because they parted and I could see pretty good. And what I seen was this whole raft of people a-sittin’ on these two banks and a-lookin at one another across this pretty little green cow pasture.

Somebody had took and drawed white lines all over it and drove posts in it, and I don’t know what all, and I looked down there and I seen five or six convicts a running up and down and a-blowing whistles . And then I looked down there and I seen these pretty girls wearin’ these little bitty short dresses and a-dancing around, and so I thought I’d sit down and see what it was that was a-going to happen.

About the time I got set down good I looked down there and I seen thirty or forty men come a-runnin’ out of one end of a great big outhouse down there and everybody where I was a-settin’ got up and hollered! And I asked this fella that was a sittin’ beside of me, “Friend, what is it that they’re a-hollerin’ for? Well, he whopped me on the back and he says, “Buddy, have a drink!” I says, “Well, I believe I will have another big orange. I got it and set back down.

When I got there again I seen that the men had got in two little bitty bunches down there real close together, and they voted. They elected one man apiece, and them two men come out in the middle of that cow pasture and shook hands like they hadn’t seen one another in a long time. Then a convict came over to where they was a-standin’, and he took out a quarter and they commenced to odd man right there! After a while I seen what it was they was odd-manning for. It was that both bunchesfull of them wanted this funny lookin little pumpkin to play with. And I know, friends, that they couldn’t eat it because they kicked it the whole evenin’ and it never busted.

Both bunchesful wanted that thing. One bunch got it and it made the other bunch just as mad as they could be! Friends, I seen that evenin’ the awfulest fight that I ever have seen in all my life !! They would run at one -another and kick one- another and throw one another down and stomp on one another and griiind their feet in one another and I don’t know what- all and just as fast as one of ’em would get hurt, they’d take him off and run another one on !!

Well, they done that as long as I set there, but pretty soon this boy that had said “Ticket, please.” He come up to me and said, “Friend, you’re gonna have to leave because it is that you don’t have a ticket.” And I says, “Well, all right.” And I got up and left.

I don’t know friends, to this day, what it was that they was a doin’ down there, but I have studied about it. I think it was that it’s some kindly of a contest where they see which bunchful of them men can take that pumpkin and run from one end of that cow pasture to the other without gettin’ knocked down or steppin’ in somethin’.


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