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THE CONNECTOR

A Newsletter By, About, and For Graduates
of William Allen High School's Class of 1983

Issue 7 - June 1999

A note about this issue: The recent 15-year reunion, held November 28, 1998, brought an influx of contributions to The Connector -- way too much to include in one issue. I have reunion observations, coverage of the reunion committee wrap-up meeting, autobiographies, and lots of photographs. Because I want to share as much of this information with you as possible, I have decided to split the coverage of the 15-year reunion between the June and December 1999 issues. This issue will cover "what happened" at the 15-year reunion and the December issue will answer "what’s next?"
 
The 15-Year Reunion As Seen Through the Jaundiced Eye
By: Jed Rapoport
Whew! I don’t know whether to breathe a major sigh of relief or to stand-up and cheer. The 15-year reunion is behind us, and I’m happy to admit that I am proud of the way the event turned out. It seemed that everyone had a good time. No one complained that they didn’t get their money’s worth, although, at least one no-show wanted a refund (sorry, we don’t give any). Slide Show Icon
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Reunion
Slide Show -
Part 1
Like all similar events, there was plenty of gossip emanating from the room. There were also plenty of stories of how people have changed, sometimes to the shock of others. I gathered some of these stories and observations for your enjoyment.
* We seem to have a very fertile class. Couples with three children seemed to be fairly common. At least one couple had four children, and they were talking about the possibility of a fifth (presumably if the unnamed wife agrees). There were also several couples who got a head start on the kid-thing and now have teenagers. These people, presumably, will be able to talk about grandchildren at an earlier reunion than anyone else will.
* Not every married couple has children, nor do they want them. Several couples showed-off pictures of their cherished pets and referred to them as their children. At least one non-parental couple explained to me the benefits of visiting with their nieces and nephews because they could return the little darlings to their parents when they had their fill of them.
* For those unmarried individuals, there is hope. It turns out that there are a lot of us. The singles present were split between those that have conscientiously avoided the institution of marriage and those recovering from the effects of having been through the marriage-thing at least one time. One couple was even testing the bounds of long engagement, now into its second year, with no plans for a wedding and no hurry. It appeared that the single women in our class did the bulk of the dancing or that many husbands would not be caught dead doing the Macarena. I didn’t see much fraternizing between single classmates, but I will keep my ears peeled for any news that may indicate otherwise.
* Fifteen years is a long time, and people change often to the shock of the collective memories of others. One male classmate looked like the hands-down winner of the bottle of Grecian Formula for the most premature (I hope) gray hair. Most people gained weight, so this was no big shocker. Several classmates who were known for being particularly string bean-like in school days had gotten noticeably more like zucchinis. While everyone changed in some way, it was also interesting to see their spouses. One 5’ +/- female classmate (who I think looks exactly the same) showed up with her husband who I judged to be 6’ 4".
* Looks played an important part in the reunion gathering. While speaking to one of the wives (not a classmate) that attended, I asked if she was having a good time. She assured me that she was because she was going around the room figuring out what people do for a living by looking at them. She demonstrated this by indicating two male classmates sitting at the next table. She said that she was betting that both were cops. The severe crew cuts, bulging muscles, carefully trimmed mustaches, and at least one showing a tattooed forearm were her tip-off. I congratulated her on her Sherlock powers of observation because both of the men are on the Allentown Police Force.
* We had at least two known casualties of alcohol consumption. Ironically, both of the happy drinkers were females (so much for female sensibility). One hapless individual was spotted, or more appropriately heard, praying to the porcelain goddess in the ladies room. She later admitted that it was a bad idea to drink on an empty stomach. The second party person was last seen in a semi-stupor sprawled out on the steps outside of the social hall. I personally stepped over her as I left. Do not worry, she was escorted home by a caring classmate (obviously not me).
* As has become a bit of tradition, we held a raffle to raise money for the class treasury to help fund future reunions. This went very well and raised a lot of money for the class; although some people decided that paying for a raffle was too much to ask. Someone stole the container of pretzels that we were using to fill the bowls on the tables. In addition, the extra cookies that we set aside to be served with coffee, if the allotted supply didn’t suffice, also developed legs and sprinted out the door.
* The reunion committee also had their share of stories. One female committee member left early because she was so busy talking that she missed dinner. She had to go out to eat before it got too late. A male committee member got so caught-up in the excitement of seeing all of the old gang that he, in what must have been a shocker to his wife, invited all of the immediate people to come to his home for a Christmas party in several weeks. This was corrected a week later when he called the invitees and admitted that between his work schedule and the children, a party at the previously mentioned time would be impossible. He said he would call with a different party schedule (sure).
There are other anecdotes to share, but most would require using real names and I need to maintain my journalistic credibility. I’m also certain that many stories lurk among the many people that I did not get to talk to that night. Suffice to say, you may see more in these pages in the future. If you feel you have something to keep hidden from the readers of The Connector, then I am open to bribery.
Jed Rapoport was a member of the reunion committee. Contact him to share your additional reunion stories. A special thank you goes out to everyone who helped plan the reunion and make a truly fun night. You did a great job!

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Since High School     See e-mail addresses of classmates

Charles I. Sicher was in the U.S. Army from 1983 to 1985, stationed in BadHersfeld, Germany, as a radar tech. He hated every minute of it.

In June 1985, he returned to Allentown to do numerous jobs, including construction work and cooking in a number of restaurants. He did this until 1988, then took a vacation to WI. In 3 months, he relocated there permanently and worked as a blackjack dealer on an Indian gaming reservation (HoChunk Casino).

In 1992, Debora Ann Brooks becomes Debora Ann Sicher when he marries the women of his dreams. She wanted a Christmas wedding but December 26, 1992 was as close as they could get.

In August of 1993, Charles met the man who changed his life (Lowel Follendorf) when he whipped him for at least $7,500 on the blackjack table. The man told him that he never had someone take as much money from him as Charles did and it felt good. The man handed Charles his business card and told him to call him when he was done fooling around with a dead end job and wanted a career. Needless to say, he called the next day.

On November 21, 1994, Charles and Debora had their first child, Tabitha Sue Sicher. Charles notes that he is glad that waited until they were both mature enough to handle the responsibilities that it takes to raise a child. It’s hard work, but worth it! This joyous occasion also brought forward the discussion to breakaway from his mentor and take the business world by storm. There were a lot of rocky times but if not for his wife he may have given up. In the end, everything turned out great.

On September 26, 1997, joy #2, Cassidy Lee Sicher, enters our world with a more easy-going dad than Tabitha did. She'll never see the 20-hour days, week-long business trips, or anything else stressful in her father’s life. He now pays other people to be stressed for him (haha). Today, Charles has a good life. He hopes and prays that his children won’t have to go through what he did to succeed.

Charles and his family vacation three times a year together. In addition, he takes two trips alone -- usually to Montana for a week during elk season and a week for muskie fishing in the land of 10000 lakes, Minnesota. For you hunters out there, he uses a Weatherby 7mm mag with a 4 -12 neopol scope.

His message to fellow classmates: Don't ever give up your dreams no matter what they are. Set your goals so high that even if you don't make them you will be better off than you are today. See you in 5!

Grant (Tim) Roth and Frieda (Schneider) Roth had a baby girl on May 10, 1999 at 4:54 p.m. The baby was 6 pounds, 11 ounces and 19" long. The proud parents named her Sierra Joyce Roth.

Note: If you submitted an autobiography and it didn’t get in this issue, you’ll see it in December.

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Lacking the funds to pay for a massive renovation of Allen High School, the Allentown School District has created a community-school partnership that uses students who receive course credits, but no pay, to help in the construction. So far, parts of the gymnasium were repainted and new plantings were placed on the school's front lawn. On the plan next is redecorating the lobby of Allen's main entrance.
On June 30, 1999, Keith R. Falko will become the next principal of Allen High School. Falko, who is currently the principal of Raub Middle School, will replace current Principal Louis P. DeLorenzo who is retiring.
Allentown is planning its Millennium Celebration. Events will include: a parade to be held on January 1, 2000, featuring popular culture of the past century and a family festival at the Allentown Art Museum on January 2, 2000, featuring performing arts, art demonstrations, and hands-on activities.
Allentown would like to re-vamp the J. Birney Crum Stadium. Problems with the stadium such as its inaccessibility to the disabled, splintery seats, and uneven lighting have caused outside events, such as the drums corps world championships, to look elsewhere.
The Soldiers and Sailors Monument at 7th and Hamilton streets in Allentown will undergo major renovations this summer. The Soldiers and Sailors moment is a 100-year old moment dedicated to Civil War veterans.
Jackie Lou Mory, an English teacher at Allen High School, has been selected as one of Allentown’s eight outstanding teachers by the Allentown Education Association. She was honored at a reception on May 5, 1999, at the Allentown Hilton.
Workers removing the canopies in front of the PP&L building in Allentown uncovered bas-relief sculptures done by the Ukrainian-born modernist sculptor Alexander Archipenko (1887-1964). The sculptures, which are original to the building, decorate the spaces over the building’s doors.
To make way for a new restaurant and nightclub, crews removed an Allentown landmark -- the big cube-shaped Eastern Light Co. sign -- on April 29, 1999. The sign, which was in the 500 block of Hamilton Street, was erected in 1962 when Eastern Light Co. constructed the building.

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