(Sam Esslinger is a coworker of our webmaster, Craig Clontz, at Dynetics and coincidentally also a comember of the Trinity United Methodist choir with Craig. Craig asked Sam if he was related to Ruth Esslinger, a long-time teacher at Rison School, and also directed Sam to the web pages here at Rison-Dallas.com where Ruth's pictures are located. Here is Sam's reply)
Thanks for sharing this with me, looks like you are doing a great job!! I know it must be quite a task. Yes, Ruth Esslinger was a dear cousin of ours, and I would always see her at Family Reunions. As far as “really knowing” her, I can’t say that I did. She was much closer to my Dad’s age, and he always kept us up to snuff as to how she was, and what she was doing. I understand that she was a marvelous school teacher, and I have met lots of folks over the years who went to school with her, and had lots of praise for her.
I have known several OTHER members of the Faculty too. Mr. H.C. (Hub) Myhand coached me in football at Gurley in 1949 (He was a GREAT baseball player in the Village, as I recall). Mrs. D. A. Mellette (nee: DeElda Allison) was a sister to my Aunt Veta Allison-Esslinger, who was married to my Dad’s Brother, Tate Esslinger. Our families visited quite often and it was always good to be with Mr. Earl (W. E. Mellette) and Mrs. DeElda….they were ‘fun’ folks. Then, there was H. C. (Clay) Kennemer, and his wife Violet. Violet was a sister to Eunice Ikard who was married to my Uncle Sam Sherrill (my Mothers’ Brother). I think they were all from New Hope originally….except from Clay….He may have been from Woodville (maybe)??? We used to visit with them occasionally too. (The Mellettes lived on Newman Ave in Huntsville, and are buried in Shiloh Cemetery at Ryland, where the Allisons were from originally). Miss Ann Schrimsher…..there’s something deep back in my memory about her too….but I can’t recall anything specific. (I guess Ruth would talk about her from time to time, or something….I dunno).
Gurley and Rison both were County Schools lots of years ago, and we were great sports rivals…..especially in football.
Then there were the Weaver boys. Macon Weaver, a Lawyer, became the D.A. for the county, and was later appointed to serve as a Federal Judge (I think)…anyway, he was a good man. His Brother, John Calvin, used to work at Dunnavant’s department store downtown selling men’s clothes, and later came to work in the same area I was in at the Arsenal. We were (are) very good friends. John’s wife (Bessie Mae) died a few years back. She was 94 years old.
Another good friend from the Village was Sam Moore, who I met and worked with in our latter years at Redstone. Sam died of a malignancy in his ear about 1 month after his wife died after a 5 year battle with cancer.
Did I tell you more than you wanted to know????? Sorry about that, if I did, but you stirred my memory, and you see what happened.