Tribute to Class of '67

Tribute to the Class of '67

“The Eagles Have Soared”

Given at the 45th Class Reunion, August 4, 2012

By Rebecca Nixon Barraclough

We entered the halls of Skyline high either as ninth graders or as a tenth graders, but all were fledglings, young eaglets- with so much to learn.  We were apprehensive, scared, eager to learn, to be accepted and liked for who we were. We wanted to spread our wings and soar!

  That first day we were wandering the halls, looking for our classes, tripping on the stairs, or running to class so we wouldn’t be tardy.  So eager to please, and do what was right, so we wouldn’t look like the babies we were. Each of us wondered if the clothes we had purchased were in style, if our deodorant was working, or as girls, how our make-up looked.  We wondered if we would fit in the crowd or would be popular. Some of us just hoped that no one would see us as we walked down the hall, as we were shy and withdrawn. As some of us came each day we wondered “would anyone say “Hi” today, would anyone even notice me?”

The upper classmen helped where they could to make us feel welcome, but most just laughed at our ineptness, they knew what was ahead, and that dreams, and wishes could be shattered in a day.   They also knew that talents could be developed and goals accomplished. with persistence and hard work.

We entered the halls of blue and gold, looking for lockers, for neighbors and friends, hoping we would see someone familiar in our classes. Every day we discovered new strengths, weaknesses, and new ways to deal with disappointments, or accomplishments.

Our feelings of worth could be shattered  with one look or laugh, and many times we went home to cry in secret, then come back the next day with smiles and hopes that things would be better with the rising of the sun.

With each new semester we wondered, where could I shine?  Could it be Forensics, Debate, Tennis, Football, Basketball, Track or Wrestling?  Could I make Girls State, Boys State or the Letterman’s club?  Will they like our performance as the “Four Mosts, or “Bells and Bows”; should I try out for the Talons, Cheerleading, or Madrigals, Student Body officer, or class officer, Men’s association or Girl’s association?

Others decided to find places to serve, and joined the Ushers, Key club, Wings, C.A.P., the Horizon, Skyliner, Satorian, Aquilian, or Stage Crew.

Some had the question come to our minds,” where could I develop my talents, or where were my friends; Concert Band, or Orchestra, Concert choir, or Modern Dance?  Should I perform in an assembly or in the school plays, “The Valiant” or “Three men in a house”?

 We considered joining others with our same interests- in a foreign language club, ski club, folk music club, Model UN, Symphony Sub Debs, or in History, art, Debate, science, and bowling clubs.

 By the end of our senior year we knew which teachers were our favorites what our interests were, if we had made it in the National Honor Society, or the barely able to graduate.

So through the years in those halls of learning we became the proud eagles that we wanted to be, we flew out into the world, with expectations, hopes, courage and goals for the future.  .

Out in the real world, life went on and we continued to spread our wings and reach great heights.  As each of us flew, we left feathers of influence, service, & accomplishments.  We found ourselves serving in the military, defending country and our freedoms, serving missions for our faiths and Higher Power, furthering our education at Universities, colleges, or vocational schools.

 Wanting to be independent from our parents, and prove that we were responsible adults, we worked and worked, and learned how to budget, and balance our time, and spend our money.

Our dating became serious with an attempt to find that soul mate who would be our companions to face the winds, and storms of life and hopefully add little eaglets to carry on our legacies .Some found them right away, and even in our own class of 67, others found them and lost them, or never did find that one true love.

As the years have flown by some of our eagles have died in the battlefield, or had their wings clipped with the death of a parent, or spouse, or child.  Our expectations that life would be just what we wanted it to be, were changed, with the realities of divorce, infertility, loss of employment, illness, disabilities, accidents, even physical and mental abuse. Some have had to take care of an ailing parent or spouse and learn the harsh realities of being a caregiver.

As we look at the profiles that have been sent in we find such a variety of influence in our own little spheres.  Just to name a few,

We have Fishing Captains, Realtors, Physicians, Neurosurgeons,  RNs, Hospital Administrators, Aerospace engineers, Geologists, Business owners and Executives, CEOS, Professors, Dentists, Attorney’s, Sales Managers, Marketing manager, Consulting engineers, Physical Therapists, Teachers, Managers, Master Gardeners, Forest  Rangers, Directors , Medical Assistants, Veterinarian ,Computer specialists, Assistants, Beauty specialist, cosmetologist, Microbiologists, Principals, Insurance agents, Homemakers, Estimators, Electrical engineers, Construction workers, Nuclear Chemist, Scientist, Educators, University presidents, Motion picture Key Grip Pharmacists, Auto mechanic,  administrators, Business owners, Founder of Envision Utah, Communication coordinator, V.P. Sales and Marketing, Global security, transportation specialist, Mortgage loan officers, Ski shop owner, Web developers, Jeweler, Investment manager ,Forensic clinical nurse specialist, Human resource specialists, Social worker, Fiscal and medical Analyst, Post office letter carrier, Pastor, Florist, Artists, actors, authors loan officers, bankers, cabinet makers, Fitness teacher, secretary, receptionists, and just plain bums, and the list goes on! Some have retired and some still in the workforce.

We have Eagles that have soared and continue soaring, by climbing peaks, cycling across continents, running marathons, traveling the world,  being caregivers, developing diets for their child with Diabetes, serving their churches as missionaries, taking care of the needy and sick, and many more wonderful accomplishments.

Many of us had little eaglets of our own. Some had really full nests of fourteen,  or ten, and the rest of us down from there.  Others of us had to adopt to fill our nests.

Those of us with eaglets know and hope that they are carrying on our sphere of influence, and are continuing to make a difference in the world, even better than we did.  They too have learned the harsh realities of war, in Iraq and Afghanistan serving their countries, and are finding their niche in life. 

Some have brought us more joy by having their own eaglets, and making us “grand-eagles” to our little “grand-eaglets” to spoil and enjoy without the responsibility of being their parents.

So, as I  quote a fellow Classmate, Rob Birkenshaw, the “Feathers will be gathering from all points of the earth” whether through the Skyline Website, or here in person; In people’s hearts and minds, or face to face.  We are gathering, remembering, reflecting, and renewing old friendships, and relationships.  Putting in the past the pettiness, the hurts, the rejections, the old feelings of superiority, and becoming humble and grateful that we are still here.

 We remember and honor those who have already passed away and have gone on to meet their maker, and hope they are here in spirit. We miss their smiles, and influence.

 We should all be grateful that we have been given the gift of life from our Higher Power and that we are still here to enjoy life with all its ups and downs.  I hope that we will always care and love each other, and give each other the benefit of the doubt.  Maybe we can make a difference in each other’s lives.  For that is what life is all about!

Keep Soaring Fellow Eagles- time is short!   Let’s hope we are here for the 50th!!

 Cheer and sing together we’re from Skyline!!