A surprise visit to Don Goss’ Art class by a former Elmhurst grad happened on March 14, 2007. Heather Metzger’s freshman class began in 1931 when she entered a brand new Elmhurst High School for the very first class in the building. Now, at age 91 in May, she remembers the first principal, Paul Haller, and the chemistry teacher, Ruth Wimmer. The courtship of Charles Eichoff (sophomore homeroom teacher) was happening with Martha Neff (English teacher across the hall) and they were soon married.
She remembers the colorful Miss Simon who was secretly married (school teachers were not allowed to be married or they were fired) taught biology and home economics and cooked the dinners for the noon lunch, all in the same room. That room was the serving window for lunch and is now a lighted bulletin board along side Room 216. Later Miss Simon became known as Mrs. Blake, her true married name. Don Goss helped his art teacher, Tom Sellers, with their wedding reception decorations.
Heather made her own Prom dress, it was a very pretty pale yellow to go along with her blonde hair. The Prom was held in the school gym (now the Learning Center in Room 213) where they setup borrowed gliders and porch swings around the room.
Miss Falls was her English teacher who came to school after picking strawberries on her acreage on Engle Road.
Even though 76 years have passed since her freshman year, Heather recalls the day they choose the school colors. Scarlet red was always the first choice and finally they choose gray to go with it. At this time only North Side, South Side and Central High Schools were open.
Heather lived on Bass Road (Spring Street extended). Students in their junior and senior years at those schools were allowed to finish where they started. Others in the freshman and sophomore classes became the startup student body at Elmhurst.
Don asked if she remembered going down Elmhurst Drive (east of the school) about two blocks, to Mrs. Lang’s Store for an ice cream, a pop, or a candy bar? She responded with, “Now, how did you know about that?” Seems like every kid knew where to get a 5-cent candy bar even during the depression days.
Heather was on the honor roll with perfect attendance for four years. Now, in her real senior years there is no crutch or walker for this lady and she is still sharp as a tack with lots of laughter. She goes out to dinner with the girls every Friday and then plays cards and bingo ’till midnight. Since she was 85, her friends and family have done the driving.
Anne and Tricia Metzger are her granddaughters. She is staying with them at 733 South Washington Street, VanWert, OH 45891. The email for the girls is firstname.lastname@example.org.
Heather was in the first graduating class from Elmhurst in 1935. The principal and faculty cooked breakfast for the graduates, a tradition that is still alive today. Heather claims that, “When you are from Elmhurst you are part of the family.”