‘Let us give thanks for our time together’
Their senior year at the Liberty HS and Bethlehem Vo-Tech schools was marked with noteworthy 20th century events. President Franklin Roosevelt would die suddenly in April 1945, the furious final months of World War II in Europe would conclude in May, and the final push to defeat Japan in the Pacific was gaining momentum. Just a couple of months after they graduated, the first atomic bombs were used in warfare. Their entire generation had grown up through the Great Depression.
In June, 40 surviving members of the class of 1945 and their guests gathered at the Palace Restaurant for a buffet luncheon to mark 72 years since they graduated, noting there probably might not be additional opportunities for reunions, as those who organized and attended are mostly nonagenarians.
Among those able to attend were one-time teachers, housewives, psychologists, engravers, accounting clerks, mechanics, technicians, waitresses, farmers, and secretaries. Some would serve in the military in the waning days of World War II, and some would serve after the war, like Charles Holotydk who remarked, “I was happy that I didn’t get shot at.”
The list of classmates who have passed away is now greater than those surviving out of the combined classes at Liberty and Vo-Tech, that they estimated contained almost 500 graduates.
In his remarks to his classmates and their guests, class president Joseph Kricks remarked, “Let us give thanks for our time together, for goodness in our lives, and for our friends.”
Amen to that for these surviving members of what is called the “Greatest Generation.”