Regardless of the your era at South High School, I am certain that many of your fondest memories can be linked to music in some way; singing, performing, composing, or listening to the hits of the day.
Recently I had the privilege of meeting Ron Jockell (’57) via email. He shared a fascinating story about how he keeps in touch with his classmates.
Here is how Ron explained his approach. “For several years I sent stories I wrote to my classmates via the internet related to music that I remembered from the "good old days", and why I remembered it. How does it relate to a song? At the end of each story I provided a link to the music that I have referenced. I always provided the appropriate Youtube recording so they could listen to the song and read the story at the same time.”
Right now enjoy one of Ron’s favorite stories. At the end of this story Ron said: “In the case of this story, the song is the Five Satins version of In The Still Of The Night. I still fog up when I hear it.”
I am certain you will see why.
In the Still of the Night
Ron Jockell ('56)
It was in the fall of 1956. The Ohio State Fair was in session and a few of us Schiller Park guys were taking in the sights at the fair. One of my friends, Gary Grim, got on a ride called the Round-Up. It was a big round ring that that you stood in, with your back to the wall and as it spun it tilted up at about a 45 degree angle.
I was watching from the midway as the girl next to Gary asked him to hold hold her purse so she could hold on with both hands. I guess it was fate that Gary politely told her "Hell no! How am I suppose to hold on!" He suggested that she might throw her purse down to his buddy that was watching. She was so scared that she didn't even think twice about tossing me her purse.
When the ride was over and she came to get her purse. I thought she was the prettiest thing that I had ever seen. I can see her now in that Pixie haircut and that green and blue flowered Mandarin dress. She walked away. I followed her to the next ride and after she got in the car, I pushed her girlfriend aside and jumped in with her.
She complained of course, but I refused to get out. It was a ride that swings you around so that the person on the inside was pushed to the outside by centrifugal force. And I was on the outside! To this day, I think she could have kept her distance if she really tried, but maybe that was wishful thinking. She came to the fair on a church bus with friends from Cincinnati, which was scheduled to leave in a couple of hours. She told me she had to go back to the pavilion to catch the bus. I asked if I could go and wait with her. She agreed. We stood around trying to make conversation when someone announced over a speaker that music was about to start and we were welcome to dance. She asked me if I liked to dance. I lied through my teeth, and I told her that I love to dance.
I prayed that the first dance would not be a fast one that would make a fool out of me. My prayers were answered and I can still feel the warmth of her cheek on mine as I held her for the first time. We will be married for 60 years this August.