PPHS Class of ’60 shows the spirit of the school
POINT PLEASANT – With a spirit of pride for their school, the Point Pleasant High School class of 1960 announced the establishment of a permanent scholarship in honor of deceased classmates.
The idea arose at the group’s monthly reunion that began in 2015. The idea for the monthly in-home lunch was started by classmate Diana Lewis Bragg who, according to class member Suzanne Dickens, chaired. almost every meeting committee since the class graduated in 1960.
âThe breakfasts gave members the opportunity to plan, socialize and remember the class, upcoming meetings and highlights from classmates who stayed in touch,â said Suzanne Dickens.
When Bragg passed away in 2017, the home group wanted to pay tribute to her and, through social media, newsletters and phone calls, they raised enough money to create the Diana Lewis Bragg Scholarship. The scholarship has been awarded twice to a high school graduate who entered college with an interest in cheerleading.
Shortly after Bragg’s death, his lifelong friend and classmate Sharon Sauer Hutchinson passed away, followed by his classmates Pat Wilson III, John Bowcott and George Knapp.
Suzanne Dickens said the group knew Bragg would want all of her classmates to be honored and included in any annual memorial, so they contacted her family and contacted her classmates again.
Along with her husband David Dickens, the couple aligned the group with the Mason County Community Foundation (MCCF) to hold, invest and administer the incoming funds. It took nearly four years for the class to accumulate enough contributions to build an endowment large enough to secure a prize gleaned from their annual interest, and the class is happy to announce that the first scholarship will be awarded this year to a graduate. from 2022.
Misty Hamon, executive director of the MCCF, said she was excited to work with the Dickens and other members of the PPHS class of 1960 to establish the scholarship. She indicated that applications are now available and that the MCCF will begin presentations to high schools in the region over the next three weeks for all scholarships available at the Foundation.
âSuzanne Dickens was the driving force behind this scholarship initiative. So far, $ 24,000 has been raised, which will allow a permanent annual scholarship of $ 1,000, âsaid Hamon. “But she is not finished yet, she plans to continue adding donations to the fund, as additional donations would increase the amount of funds available for scholarships.”
âThe Class of 1960 is proud and honored to offer this annual award,â said Suzanne. âThe award will not be based on athletic ability, career development, religion, musical skill or scholarship, although the recipient may certainly be skilled in any of these areas. The award will be presented to a senior graduate who has been determined by his or her peers and a committee of selected adults who regard the nominee as “the most deserving”.
Suzanne said the scholarship is available to students entering a college, vocational school, community college, military service or a specialized career development program. The selection criteria should be based on the respect that the class has for the individual and his leadership, which can be illustrated as follows: the winner should serve as a role model, a person admired by his classmates for his character, or the ability to defend a principle even in the face of controversy; they must be able to empathize or appreciate how difficult life can be for many members of their school or community; community service, advocacy, personal sacrifice in the service of another, or working towards a common community goal.
When the annual award is presented, a list of the 1960 classmates who died that year will be read in their memory.
Contributions to the fund are welcome and can be mailed to the MCCF-PPHS Class of 1960 scholarship, 4 Orchard Hill, Point Pleasant, WV 25550. For more information on applying for the Class of 1960 scholarship, contact the Mason County Community Foundation at 304-372-4500, or visit their website: www.mccfinc.org.
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Pictured are members of the Point Pleasant High School class of 1960.
The Class of Class of 1960 officers, pictured from left, were Judy Dudding, secretary; Jean Pullins, archivist; Mary Jefferies, President; Jim Wedge, vice-president; Larry Barr, record keeper; Verna LeMasters, Treasurer. Seated, Mrs. Edward Jackson, Counselor.
Lorna Hart is a freelance writer for Ohio Valley Publishing.