Thursday, February 23, 2017

2016-17 SCAL All-County Boys & Girls

Nathan Lessing surpassed 2,000 career points at Fairlawn and
was named Shelby County Athletic League Player of the Year

Maria Herron had a spectacular senior season that included
1,000 career points and setting a single game 3-point record with 8 

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Dave’s Midwestern Ohio Memories from the 50’s & 60’s

A Series of Guest Blogs by an out-of-state Fish Report reader originally from this area about fond memories of growing up in Midwestern Ohio during the 50’s & 60’s.


1987 Ft. Loramie Redskins - My Brother-in-Law’s Wife in first row, second from the right

My continuing series of eBay memorabilia related to local communities will take a short hiatus to focus on a topic that ended last week’s blog - cheerleaders! With tournament time coming up, basketball players have to stay focused on winning or suddenly you’re done for the season or worse yet, your career. Staying focused is exactly what did not happen to me as a senior in our first tournament game at Sidney High against Anna. One of Anna’s players, who will go unnamed, was next to me along the foul line during an Anna foul shot early in the game. Turns out Loramie’s cheerleaders were stationed right under the basket and the Anna player next to me, just as the foul shot was about to go up, asked me the name of the red-headed cheerleader on the end. I looked over to see who it was (Jane) as the foul shot went up, which was missed, but the Anna player slipped around me, got the rebound, and put up a shot that went in as I fouled him. He made his foul shot, I eventually fouled out of the game and we lost by 3. Bummer! Anna went on to the regional finals; it could have been us had it not for my lack of focus. Jane, the red headed cheerleader, was indeed cute and as proof, was named Miss Chick that summer. Also, I ended up meeting, than marrying a Russia High cheerleader, living happily ever after as documented in this previous blogspot.

My brother-in-law also married a cheerleader, shown in the photo above. She got a call out by my brother-in-law during a recent Fish Report Live interview of Ft. Loramie’s Tom Brandewie.

Bottom line, boys being boys, they will always check out the cheerleaders, but take my word for it, avoid doing so in the middle of a tournament game!


Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Dave’s Midwestern Ohio Memories from the 50’s & 60’s

A Series of Guest Blogs by an out-of-state Fish Report reader originally from this area about fond memories of growing up in Midwestern Ohio during the 50’s & 60’s.

Wooden Shoe eBay Memorabilia

Continuing last week's blog post about local eBay memorabilia, Wooden Shoe paraphernalia represents by far the most prevalent historic items on eBay related to our local communities back home. Several examples follow:

The Wooden Shoe Brewery opened in 1869, surviving a 1888 fire and Prohibition from 1919-33. The brewery closed in 1953, but fortunately the recipe for Wooden Shoe beer lives on as the first of the modern day craft brews, Sam Adams Boston Lager. Apparently a sixth generation descendent of the founder of Wooden Shoe used the original family recipe to start the Boston brewery in 1984. Once closed, the Wooden Shoe Brewery building was eventually turned into a cannery. I recall hauling wagons loaded with tomatoes picked by migrant workers to the cannery from the fields around home. Each migrant worker was paid 10 cents a bushel while working from sun-up to sun-down. The best workers could pick about 15 bushels an hour, with entire families sometimes doing the picking, including young children and aging grandparents. The cannery no longer exists and the building has since been demolished.

Years later, a micro-brewery under the same Wooden Shoe brand opened in 2005, only to unfortunately close in 2012. However, one Minster mainstay, the Wooden Shoe Inn, pictured below, remains open to this day. This restaurant was a favorite of our family, having held many get-togethers in their back room. Proprietor Fred Meyer, pictured below tending bar, always greeted us with a smile, a mug of cold beer and some great stories from the past, one of which is chronicled in this previous blogpost.

Fred was a great basketball player for Minster, leading his team to the State Tournament in 1965. His younger sister, Pam, was a cheerleader on the team and looked like Doris Day, pictured below, only cuter! Every basketball player on teams playing Minster had a crush on her. What does that detail have to do with eBay memorabilia? Don’t know and don’t care!

Friday, February 10, 2017

Lady Raiders Regular Season One Of The Best

Russia seniors Maria Herron and Tiffany Hatcher led the
Lady Raiders to one of the best regular seasons in history

The Russia girls basketball team ended the 2016-17 regular season at 17-5, capping one of the programs best regular seasons in school history. Below is a list of the top seven Lady Raider regular seasons by winning percentage:

The 1989-90 Lady Raiders were the last team to sweep the SCL

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Dave’s Midwestern Ohio Memories from the 50’s & 60’s

Blog about fond memories of growing up in Midwestern Ohio during the 50’s & 60’s.

Local eBay Memorabilia

Each day I receive email alerts from eBay for any memorabilia related to many of the local communities back home. I seldom buy anything, but when the emails come in, I’m often reminded of some nuance about the item. Here are a few examples:

Dad had an ash tray like this from Minster's Motor Inn Garage next to his easy chair in the living room. He gave up smoking when I was pretty young, but for years as a kid we’d play with the tire ash tray, rolling it back and forth, popping out the glass insert, bouncing the tire against the brick wall on our porch and other such games. Fortunately it was used more as a toy than ash tray, no doubt contributing to Dad’s 94 year longevity. In fact, as I recall the tread was long gone and nothing like the photo. Speaking of ash trays, below is a 1976 bicentennial commemorative piece manufactured by my wife’s great uncle from Russia. He also died at a ripe old age as well so he too obviously didn’t use the product much. And pictured below that is a Minster Machine ash tray advertising their world famous punch presses documented in this previous blog post.

Since we’re on the subject of smoking, below is a photo of an historic Ft. Loramie Fire Department helmet from the early 1900’s that sold for $372! Recall this previous blog about firefighters from that era.

Here are some cancelled stamps from way back when that bring back memories of my stamp collection as a kid that mysteriously disappeared after I left for college, along with my Erector set and baseball card collection! My younger brother has pleaded ignorance all these years; however, my sister did find my old Lincoln log set several years ago in an old box of Mom & Dad’s stuff in her attic! By the way, little known fact: Lincoln Logs were invented by the son of famous architect Frank Lloyd Wright in 1916.

Versailles, Ohio

Look for more local eBay memorabilia next week.

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Dave’s Midwestern Ohio Memories from the 50’s & 60’s

Blog about memories of growing up in Midwestern Ohio during the 50’s & 60’s.

Perhaps if you are a news junkie like me, you've heard the Doomsday Clock recently moved closer to midnight than since 1953. This symbolic clock will strike midnight if and when a global nuclear disaster ever occurs. The concept was developed after the atomic bombs were detonated to end WWII in 1945. On that subject, I recently discovered that during the war, my uncle and Godfather Hank may have been involved with the transport of the first atomic bomb to Tinian Island in the South Pacific where the B29 bomber squadron was based that dropped the first atomic bomb over Hiroshima, Japan. Hank never told anyone the full story since the information was classified top secret, so he likely went to his grave with those secrets. Recently, however, much of the information about that pivotal bombing has been declassified, so after some google searching, I discovered that the first atom bombs were disassembled into various pieces and transported by different means and routes to avoid having the entire bomb fall into enemy hands. So it’s definitely possible that my Godfather, pictured below at various ages, was involved since he was a transport pilot in the U.S. Naval Air Forces, Pacific Fleet, rising to the rank of Commander in the Naval Reserves after the war. See photos below of his aviator wings and command patch.

Godfather Hank in 1933, 1945 & 2003

Naval Air Force Aviator Wings & Command Badge

Further research into the newly unclassified documents revealed that the engineers and technicians on the Manhattan Project (code name for the development of the atomic bomb) were also transported via various means from Los Alamos, NM where the bomb was developed to Tinian Island so it could be re-assembled before being loaded on the B29 pictured below christened Enola Gay after pilot Paul Tibbets mother. Further complicating matters, these scientists did not travel with the atom bomb components, so the entire process was a logistical challenge that came off without a hitch between the June 21st departure from Los Alamos to the August 5th bombing.

Since I was born after WWII, my memories of that period are totally from history books and my relatives who were among the veterans that served so valiantly. I do recall my Godfather giving me airplane paraphernalia like his old flight goggles and oxygen mask that I’d play with as a kid. Until now I had assumed my only real connection to the atom bomb occurred during the 50’s with the "duck and cover drills" in grade school and the construction of a few "bomb shelters" around town. Beyond that, I do recall the singing the German song "Oh Tannenbaum" or "Oh Christmas Tree" during the holidays as a kid. It was during the Cold War, so naturally I thought they were singing "Oh atomic bomb", and I chimed right in!

Duck & Cover Drill

Bomb Shelter Construction

Little Boy and Fat Man brought a quick end to the war, saving countless American lives in the process. That being said, having visited the Hiroshima Peace Memorial several times during business trips to Japan, let’s hope and pray that these homicidal devices are the first and last atomic bombs ever detonated, keeping that dastardly Doomsday Clock from ever ticking to midnight. . . . . . . 

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Dave’s Midwestern Ohio Memories from the 50’s & 60’s

Blog about fond memories of growing up in Midwestern Ohio during the 50’s & 60’s.

Mom’s 100th Birthday

Today, Tuesday, January 24th, would have been my Mother's 100th Birthday. She died 14 years ago at age 86 and we miss her dearly. She was the ultimate “loving disciplinarian” who would make sure we behaved properly (most of the time) but used a firm hand in a teaching manner. Then whenever more severe parental instruction was needed, Dad would be brought in as the “enforcer” with the infamous paddle! Mom & Dad met after WWII and were married in 1947 as shown in the photo below in front of the former St. Patrick’s church.

The Catholic faith was the foundation of their loving relationship and how they raised their family of 5 children. Mom was dedicated to the Blessed Mother and would pray the rosary regularly, especially during Lent when the entire family would gather together every weekday night to toggle through the beads and recite the mysteries. The following photo was taken by my Dad showing us with our parish priest, Fr. Raterman (I’m the one with glasses in the back with the ball glove on my hand). About that same time, Father had been teaching me Latin in preparation for becoming a mass server. He needed a lot of patience, but that basic training set the stage eventually for me to fluently read and understand such Latin tomes as Julius Caesar and Homer's Iliad & Odyssey during high school, all since forgotten, of course!

My Mother loved her family unconditionally. She really enjoyed spending time with her 10 brothers and sisters, especially with her three sisters pictured below (Mom upper right) celebrating the end of WWII in 1945. And most of all, she enjoyed our family get-togethers on the farm commemorated in the family photo below next to the Mile Creek running through our farm with the house and barn in the background.


Mom always had a lush flower and vegetable garden, using the fresh produce to cook three square meals a day for our family. Of course, as kids we did our share of tending to the garden and helping her cook, while also assisting Dad feed the livestock and tend to the crops. It was fun growing up on the farm (for the most part) and the memories come flooding back as we commemorate Mom’s 100th birthday. After us kids were grown, Mom & Dad were blessed with a long and enjoyable retirement spending time traveling, playing cards and partying with family and friends. The Halloween photo below represents a typical example.

Happy Birthday, Mom. This prayer is in your honor. Rest in peace.

Proverbs 31:  The Wife of Noble Character

10 [b]A wife of noble character who can find?
    She is worth far more than rubies.
11 Her husband has full confidence in her
    and lacks nothing of value.
12 She brings him good, not harm,
    all the days of her life.
13 She selects wool and flax
    and works with eager hands.
14 She is like the merchant ships,
    bringing her food from afar.
15 She gets up while it is still night;
    she provides food for her family
    and portions for her female servants.
16 She considers a field and buys it;
    out of her earnings she plants a vineyard.
17 She sets about her work vigorously;
    her arms are strong for her tasks.
18 She sees that her trading is profitable,
    and her lamp does not go out at night.
19 In her hand she holds the distaff
    and grasps the spindle with her fingers.
20 She opens her arms to the poor
    and extends her hands to the needy.
21 When it snows, she has no fear for her household;
    for all of them are clothed in scarlet.
22 She makes coverings for her bed;
    she is clothed in fine linen and purple.
23 Her husband is respected at the city gate,
    where he takes his seat among the elders of the land.
24 She makes linen garments and sells them,
    and supplies the merchants with sashes.
25 She is clothed with strength and dignity;
    she can laugh at the days to come.
26 She speaks with wisdom,
    and faithful instruction is on her tongue.
27 She watches over the affairs of her household
    and does not eat the bread of idleness.
28 Her children arise and call her blessed;
    her husband also, and he praises her:
29 “Many women do noble things,
    but you surpass them all.”
30 Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting;
    but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.
31 Honor her for all that her hands have done,
    and let her works bring her praise at the city gate.