Sunday, July 6, 2008

Langston High School's 2008 Reunion Banquet: "Returning To Yesteryear"

Returning to those days of old. Isn't it a wonderful thought?

That was not difficult for arguably, East Tennessee's oldest Black High School, at its 2008 Reunion Banquet.


Alumni of Langston High School gathered in pomp and circumstance, and a great deal of friendship, at the Double Tree Hotel in Johnson City Saturday night, July 5, 1008. It was the 17th reunion for former classmates of the school.

A packed ballroom listened to words of welcome from Nancy Robinson, banquet chairwoman, also serves as the Alumni Association treasurer. There were plenty of door prizes to go around, including some huge fruit baskets.

Winners of the Langston Games were announced at the banquet. Those games at the Carver Recreation Center included basketball free throws and horseshoe pitches, nice easy games that former Langston Committee leader Barbara (Bobbi) Love-Watterson said with a smile, were easy for "folks our age." The first place winner for the number of correct basketball free throws was Mary Katherine Williams, and second place was won by Nancy Howard.

Winner in the Free Points category was also Nancy Howard, with Annie M. Hall coming in for the second place trophy. The Horseshoe Pitch competition was divided into men and women's categories, with Patsy Fields taking the first place prize. Second place went to Annie M. Hall. Over on the men's side, Billy G. Williams took first place, and Boise Young won the second place award.

Guest Speaker at the banquet was Betty McFarlin, whose words of wisdom were both inspirational and instrumental to the group. Afterwards, the Eunice Miller Lee Scholarship was presented, as it is every reunion to a deserving student continuing their higher education. Alumnus William "Bill" Coleman co-chaired the scholarship committee.

The group Risse' entertained the group late into the night as dancing took center stage, and many alumni found out they still have "all the right moves."

The "In Memory" list read at the Sunday Memorial Service includes the names of 35 Langston Alumni, whose voices have been stilled since the last reunion two years ago. Although gone, they are not forgotten by alumni who attended all of the events of the three-day reunion.

All in all, it was a wonderful Langston High School Reunion, with the same spirit that shone at one of the most successful African-American schools in upper East Tennessee. The motto "One Step at a time---but always forward" will serve all Langston alumni for years to come, and hopefully their descendants will pick up the gauntlet and forge on.

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