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Bygone Days: A look at the past in NE Allegan County

25 Years Ago — April 13, 1994

The Hopkins Free Public Library is planning to restructure its financing and will ask local voters approve a half-mill levy. Library Director Alice Hazen and Library Board President Mary Howard have indicated funding will run out within just a few years if something isn’t done. The Hopkins Township Board contributes $3,000 annually and Monterey Township $1,000 and other revenue comes from penal fines and the state.

The Ebersole Environmental Center finally has been given the green light to resume customary operations after tests of water came back clean.

Al and Rose Mokman officially have been evicted from the Wayland Livestock Auction barn, where they have been squatting for some time illegally. Michigan State Police troopers said the couple left behind a real mess.

Ken Fein has announced he will seek a third two-year term on the Allegan County Board of Commissioners. He was appointed to the post upon the death of Ralph Sytsma and has been elected twice since.

Thomas Miller, who has accumulated hundreds of thousands of tires at his farm on 120th Avenue, has filed for bankruptcy. Miller served 25 days in jail in January for contempt of court and failing to clean up the hazardous site.

Kimberly Leep was crowned Miss Martin at the community’s pageant and Angie Pavlak was first runner-up. Leep’s sister Christie is currently serving as Dahlia Festival Queen in Wayland.

The Dorr Township Board has decided to double the number of monthly meetings and take up the issue of having two library buildings within its boundaries, in Dorr and Moline.

Mary Lou Schwartz is getting her wish, as Gov. John Engler has decreed that a copy of the film “Schindler’s List” be provided to every public school as part of curriculum.

The Wayland varsity baseball team will have a tough act to follow this spring after a district and conference championship campaign a year ago and a 27-5 overall record.

Senior Heidi Moreau, who holds the school record in the shot put and discus, leads the rebuilding Wildcat girls’ track team.

Junior hurler Jenny Stratton will begin her third season on the mound for the Martin softball team.

Pitchers Dinyel Bailey and freshman Angie Farmer are hoping for solid seasons for the Wayland softvall squad.

Brandon Moma of Wayland won first place in the state gymnastics meet in the pommel horse and high bar.

50 Years Ago — April 9, 1969

Lois Sykes was named valedictorian and Joanne Grzesak salutatorian for the Wayland High School Class of 1969.

The new Wayland City Planning Commission will meet on the first Wednesday of each month at council chambers, with David Low as chairman.

Robert Grafford, Harry Walker and Christopher Fifelski earned perfect 4.0 grade points averages for the fourth marking period at St. Therese School.

The sanitary sewer proposal for the City of Wayland “went down the drain” for the third time in three years, by a vote of 422 to 189. Meanwhile, Marshall Towne, Donald Shafer and Bill Conwell were elected to City Council seats and Dr. John White was elected as a newcomer on the Library Board.

Gary Mihalik and John Faculak have been introduced as newest troopers at the Wayland post of the Michigan State Police.

Nine Wayland High School students have qualified for forensics competition regionals, including Lesley Wakeman, Debbie Ward, Bob Bell, Patti Adams, Joan Lautensleger, Tom Lanning, Rich Tolan, Tom Latondress abd Paul Calkins.

The Waykand Education Association is sponsoring a public forum question and answer session with High School Principal JC Clyma and Junior High Principal Robert Marutz at the Wayland High School cafeteria.

Wayland High School and junior high students earning perfect 4.0 grade point averages were Rose Baweja, Joan Lautensleger, Tom Marks, David Smith, Lois Sykes, Laurie Heath, Linda Shoemaker, Linda Smith. Kris Kohles and Alan Steines.

Gerald Nelson, in this week’s installment of “Our Teachers Speak,” wrote, “Adults, instead of falling for the provocations from youth, should examine the source of youth complaints.”

Editor-Publisher Irvin P. Helmey, in “Helmey at the Helm,” urged local citizens to get in touch with high school teacher Vincent DeJong to take part in a projuect to have a stage production over the summer.

Eighth-grade teacher Fran Beuschel took the Globe to task for seeming to report widespread support for turning the junior high into a middle school.

Larry and Jack’s Skelgas & Appliance store is having a grand opening this weekend on West Superior Street.

The folk music group The Mission will present a concert Saturday evening at the Martin High School gym.

Sports columnist Charlie Frost suggested the Detroit Tigers will repeat as champions of the American League East Division and picked Baltimore third. Frost two weeks before said the New York Mets were improved, but had a ways to go to be a contender.

The Hopkins Community Reformed Church will show the film “Through Gates of Splendor,” the story of five missionaries “killed by savage Auca Indians in Equador.

The Hopkins FFA repeated as state Broiler champs with members Ron Beaver, Dennis Duryea, Dale Coffey, Romie Belka, Gary Hilaski, Dennis Reynolds, Russ Barnhart and Mike Marklevitz.

The Fifth Dimension ousted Tommy Roe as owner of the No. 1 song with “Age of Aquarius.”

75 Years Ago — April 15, 1944

Pvt. Joseph Ferner of Leighton Township wrote home from a prison in Germany, saying was being treated well. He had been reported missing in action on Jan. 22.

Editor-Publisher Rollo G. Mosher noted that grass fire season had arrived, commenting they “are getting to be the expected thing every spring in Wayland.”

Sgt. Charles Ryno, a gunner in the Flying Fortress group in England, has been reported in missing in action, according to word received by his wife, a nurse at St. Mary’s Hospital in Grand Rapids.

Sts. Cyril & Methodius Church at Gun Lake will have a cakewalk and dance Sunday.

Pvt. Bill Schuh, serving as an orderly in a mess hall and a kitchen truck driver, has been reassigned from Tennessee through Alabama to Mississippi.

Cpl. Vere Flue of Shelbyville, a Martin High School graduate, is serving as an ambulance driver in England.

Charles Gates has retired as a letter carrier for the U.S. Postal Service, the last 21 years in Wayland.

Stephen Kamyszek, 21, son of Mr. and Mrs. Frank Kamyszek of Hopkins, was drowned at Milne Bay, New Guinea, while serving in the Pacific Theatre. A memorial service is planned at St. Stanislaus Church in Hilliards, according to the Rev. Leo Malinowski.

The Wayland High School Home Economics program will sponsor a canning demonstration at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, April 19.

Dr. Chester Graham, executive director of the Victory Food Committee of Michigan, will speak at 8 p.m. Tuesday, April 25, on “What Is the Future of the Working Farm Family?”

Now showing at the Wayland Theatre:

  • James Cagney and Humphrey Bogart in “The Oklahoma Kid.”
  • John Hubbard and Rita Quigley in “Whispering Footsteps.”
  • Donald Crisp, Roddy McDowell, Edmund Gwenn, Niger Bruce, and Elsa Lancaster in “Lassie Come Home.”
  • Allyn Joslyn and Evelyn Keyes in “Dangerous Blondes.”
  • Kenny Baker in “Doughboys in Ireland.”

100 Years Ago — April 11, 1919

Twelve local business owners signed a pledge to close at 6:30 p.m. each evening except Wednesdays and Saturdays and remain closed Sundays through October.

Wayland health Officer Dr. Ira Slater is urging all citizens to perform thorough spring cleanups because of the recent spate of influenza cases, with more than 30 reported.The Sunday night service of the Christian Church was canceled because of the spread of the virus and some of the victims included teacher Mrs. Floyd Boughner and children.

Lora E. Jones, who was born in Wayland in 1856, the widow of Nathaniel B. Harrington, died at her home after a lingering illness. She was 62.

Clyde Pierson wrote to the Globe from France, describing his tour of Paris with fellow soldiers and raving about French hospitality.

Because women voted for the first time ever, the poll numbers set records. Election workers said 269 ballots were cast on a straight Republic ticket, with 107 going for the Peoples Party. Frank Chamberlain was re-elected Wayland Township Supervisor, L.D. Chapple clerk and William H. Jackson treasurer.

The state-wide beer and wine proposal as an exception to the Volstead Act was defeated handily in Michigan, as well as in the Wayland area.

The Wayland Grange meeting roll call was to be answered by Mother Goose rhymes. Discussion topic: “Why do farme families use butter substitutes?”

William Chase, who served in the Civil War for seven months before being discharged because of illness, died at his Wayland farm, where he had lived for the past 36 years. He was 79.

Harry A. Jones and Maggie Malone will present the drama “Lest We Forget” at Frank’s Opera House Tuesday evening, featuring music by the Grotto Band of Grand Rapids.

The Wayland High School girls’ basketball team was preparing for an upcoming battle with Martin and promised victory “for sure.”

Richard Dale Truax, age one year, nine months and 17 days, died at his home. It was reported the lad “during his short career was a great sufferer from which now he is relieved.”

Wayland will play Martin this Saturday afternoon in a baseball contest.

The Odd Fellows and Rebekahs are inviting the community to a box social and auction over the weekend.


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