HISTORY OF ZEPHYRHILLS HIGH SCHOOL
Highlights of 1979Commencement for 206 Seniors Friday in New ZHS Stadium, Zephyrhills News, June 14, 1979
The first commencement to be held outdoors in many years will be observed by Zephyrhills High School Friday evening as 206 seniors—the largest graduating class in the school’s history—will march across the stage at the new stadium to accept their diplomas.
Plenty of parking will be available, and there is no limit on seating, according to principal Raymond B. Stewart, who said that because the new stadium will seat 1,800 on the home side, it has not been necessary to issue tickets to seniors for family use.
For the past three years the commencement has been held in the ZHS commons where the attendance has been estimated from 1,000 to 1,200 last year when the class also was very large.
The music will be played by Miss Pam Gore, a junior, but because of the outdoor ceremony, it will be presented via a tape recording.
ZHS drew Dr. James Marlowe as the Board Member who will present the diplomas.
The Reverend Leonard Stansbury Jr. of the First Christian Church will give the invocation and the first item on the program will be the Salutatorian’s Address by Robert Boyd. Steven Spanger, president of the graduating class, will make his address on behalf of the seniors, following which awards to outstanding graduates will be given.
Making the presentation of awards will be Ms. Janet W. Guy, director of the County’s Exceptional Child Program. The Valedictorian’s Address will be delivered by David Deaton with presentation of diplomas by Dr. Marlowe following. He will be assisted by principal, Raymond B. Stewart, and J.C. Steele, chairman. The benediction will be given by the Reverend Lewis Meyer, pastor of the Christian Missionary Alliance Church.
Ushers for the commencement will be Pam Gore, James Delbridge, Beverly Williams, Mickey Farrell, Donna Green, Buddy McConnell, Teresa Huskey, David McCulloch, Tammy Peyton, Tim Wilson, Pam Madl, Raymond LaCour, Tara Green, Maria Spoto, Dena Counts, Sharon Hasting, Laurianne Reed, Sherri Schneider, Mary Judy, Larry Reed, Ron Springfield, and James Govreau.
ZHS Graduates 206 Seniors; Many Awards Are Presented, Zephyrhills News, June 21, 1979
The weather was breezy but that cooled the evening and the sunlight in the eyes of parents, relatives and friends was a blessing after an afternoon threat of rain.
In short, the setting was just about perfect Friday evening of last week for the first outdoor commencement exercises for a Zephyrhills High School graduating class in many years, and the first ever in the new Bulldog stadium.
An estimated 1,700 persons applauded, cheered and shed some tears as the school’s largest class ever, 206 graduates, accepted their diplomas. Young women in the graduating class wore orange robes and mortar boards, while the young men wore black, creating a colorful processional in the school colors. Honor students also wore a yellow satin yolk while all girl graduates were presented white roses to wear.
As a new touch this year the processional was led by three members of the band flag corps with Diane Willoughby carrying the American flag and with Cheryl Flack and Teresa Hood carrying band flags.
At the start of the program for the salute to the flag Miss Willoughby advanced the colors onto the running track near the stage, while during the diploma presentation, Miss Hood and Miss Flack crossed their flags to create an arch through which the graduates passed on their way to accept their reward for four years of study.
A feature of commencement each year is the presentation of special awards, and this year these were called out by Ms. Janet F. Guy, director of the exceptional student education program for Pasco County Schools.
The valedictorian award was presented to David Deaton and Salutatorian award to Robert Boyd. Awarded as surprises were: Activities—Karen Lynne Holt and Robert Shane Forrester; Most School Spirit—Estella Diane Kennedy and Dwayne M. Lane; Citizenship –Julie Diane Hasting and Robert Boyd; Athletics—Deborah Jean Boyette and Dondi Decosta Ward; and Best All Around—Jone Marie Mills and Steven Edgar Rigini Spanger.
Music chosen by the seniors was taped and played during the presentation of diplomas. Following the diploma presentation and the speeches by Valedictorian Deaton, Salutatorian Boyd and President Steve Spanger, Steele announced to the crowd, “I give you the Class of 1979.”
The announcement was greeted by cheers and shouts from the seated graduates, and to cap off their enthusiasm one of their number tossed a string of firecrackers out onto the football field behind the seats.
Then, as the processional beneath the south goalposts the seniors gathered in a crowd awaiting a signal, at which many threw their graduation hats high into the air, and then scrambled in an attempt to find their own hats again. Thirty minutes after the ceremony had ended there was still a crowd of seniors on the field, saying goodbyes, kissing and crying.
Valedictorian’s Speech by David Deaton
Parents, relatives, guests, teachers and fellow students: “Today is a solemn occasion. After 12 years of hard work, we, the students have reached the zenith of our life, so far; our senior year and graduation. But is this the apex or our lives? Where are we going from here? What are we going to do and who are we going to become? Sure, times have been great! The memories come rolling back—football games, school dances, parties. But are we content to live on our memories? Or will we grasp for the inner stellar mysteries of our universe? I urge you to make something of yourselves. We are the future leaders of the world. The world is depending on us, but also we have to depend on ourselves. Think about what contributions you can make to society, then go and make them.
Don’t take a lackadaisical attitude and say, “What can I –just one person do? Or It’s not my job.” If everybody took that viewpoint, where would we be today? We would still be in caves. America achieved its greatness because of hard work, determination, ambition and patriotism. And it will remain great if and only if we continue to strive in that vein.
We are the best students to graduate from good ole ZHS. We are the best trained and the best educated. We owe these advantages to our teachers, coaches and parents. I would like to thank them, and would like all the teachers to stand up. Thank you. Now would all the parents stand, since they gave us these opportunities. Let’s give them a hand.
But this training won’t do us any good if we don’t use it. Funnel your energy in useful directions. Use your drive and ambition to achieve your dreams. Become what you want to be. I know you are a captive audience and probably could care less what any of us say. You’re only interested in getting your diploma and splitting. But before you leave I would like you to remember this. The most important things in life are: to realize your goals, to have a sense of purpose, and to obtain happiness. Not to be a ditch-digger with an outlook lower than a snake’s navel. Thank you for your attention. Good luck and have fun, but don’t kill yourselves tonight!
Salutatorian’s Talk by Robert Boyd
Education is hard to define. We go to school to get an education and when we receive diplomas we say we are educated. To some people education is a learning of facts and definitions and meanings of words. To some it is the three R’s—Riting, Reading and Rithmetic. Others say education is gaining knowledge. I think we will all agree one becomes educated by using his mind so some people say that the real test of an educational process is how well it develops the student’s mind in his ability to think clearly.
Suppose someone is taught untruths as facts. This is done quite often by teachers unknowingly. The students then write the false information as answers on tests and receive diplomas. Are they educated?
In the 15th century students were taught that the sun and all the heavenly bodies revolved around the earth which was said to be the center of the universe. Galileo had acquired a telescope which had recently been invented by Copernicus, a fellow scientist. By using his new telescope he decided the sun was the center of the universe and began to teach this. This caused quite an uproar and Galileo was brought into court and the judge sentenced him to death if he kept on teaching that the planets revolved around the sun. Galileo wanted to live so he stopped his teachings.
It seems to me education is more than learning facts and definitions which may or may not be true. I prefer this definition of education. It is a process of gaining knowledge and developing the ability to think so that the knowledge gained is used to help people work together so that all people will have a better life.
I consider the academic training in Zephyrhills to be quite satisfactory and on behalf of the senior class I want to thank all those administrators and teachers who are dedicated to the teaching profession and who sacrificed money as well as extra time to teach us. We hope we will justify your efforts and time which you spent on our behalf.
Part of this education is also learning to get along with your fellow students. This ability is not only learned in the classroom, but in activities, and this is a great asset to being successful in life.
One of my outstanding educational experiences I remember was when I played junior high basketball. I remember the 8th grade team as the year of the girls. That’s right, we had girls on our team and the girls got more playing time than I did. That was hard to take. But the parents who were really angry were the parents of the boys who did not make the team because the girls took their place. I also played my senior year on the high school basketball team. I didn’t have to worry about girls taking my place then because they had their own team. Coach Reed was dedicated to winning basketball and it was a good experience to be coached by him.
In closing I would like to challenge each and every member of the senior class of 1979 to take this education they have acquired the last 12 years and to go out and strive for the highest possible goals they have set for themselves, and may they never cease to strive for those goals. Thank you.
President’s Talk by Steven Spanger
Parents, Guests and fellow students. We, the graduates of 1979, are this year’s contribution to the future. We have learned the elements of the past and we have learned as the chemists, must take the best of those elements to form the compound of which the future will be composed.
Zephyrhills High School has been our nurturing ground. The academic studies are only 50% of the learning process. The people we’ve met, the experiences, and ideas we have formed are so important because they will dictate how we react to situations later on in life.
The roles that we play and the direction we take add to the self image we have of ourselves as people. In high school we should have formed a basic concept of who we are, what direction we are headed, and where we fit in society…..
Commencement Program printed in Zephyrhills News, June 14, 1979
Zephyrhills High School Stadium, Friday, June 15, 1979
Organ Prelude—Miss Pam Gore
Processional—“Pomp and Circumstance”
Invocation—The Reverend Leonard Stansbury, Jr.
Address by the Salutatorian—Robert Boyd
Address by the Class President—Steven Spanger
Presentation of Awards—Ms. Janet Fogy, Director of Pasco County Exceptional Student Education
Address by the Valedictorian—David Deaton
Presentation of Diplomas—Dr. James Marlow, School Board Member assisted by Raymond B. Stewart, Principal
Benediction—The Reverend Lewis Meyer, Pastor of Christian & Missionary Church
Recessional—“March of the Priests”
Class Officers—Steve Spanger, President; Darlene Roman, Vice-President; Lynda Furney, Secretary; and Kathy Malmquist, Treasurer
Sponsors—Mr. David Camper, Miss Sue Croley, Mr. Harry Mortner, Mrs. Jessie Puggelli, Mr. Ernest Wise, Mrs. Gail Reynolds, Mr. J.C. Steele, and Mrs. Terry Turner.
Baccalaureate Is Sunday For 206 Graduating ZHS Seniors, Zephyrhills News, June 7, 1979
The baccalaureate for the Zephyrhills High School graduating class will be at the First Baptist Church of Zephyrhills Sunday night at 7:30 p.m.
A non-denominational church service for the graduating seniors is planned according to school advisor, J.C. Steele. All friends and relatives of the seniors are invited to attend the service, Steele said.
The Reverend Henry Thomas, pastor of the First Assembly of God will deliver the message and Dan Benham, First Baptist Music and Youth Director, will issue the benediction. Pam Gore will be the organist and Reverend John Huff, First Baptist Associate, will give the invocation.
The Zephyrhills High School Ensemble will present a musical number and Karen Holt, soloist, will present two numbers.
Steele said selected members of the sophomore class will serve as ushers during the baccalaureate.
Senior Class Salutatorian is Robert Boyd and Valedictorian is David Deaton. The graduation class is the largest graduating class ever. Last year’s class had 188 graduating seniors.
Six students will graduate with A honors. Those students are Angela Baker, David Deaton, Norma Jean Mehlhorn, Bonnie Murray, Cynthia Roman, and Kelly Strube in addition to 49 students also graduating with honors.
Steele said students are reminded that graduation practice will be held Friday morning.
ZHS Grad Named to Air Force Academy, Zephyrhills News, June 7, 1979
The United States Air Force announced this week that an appointment to the Air Force Academy as a member of the Class of 1983 has been extended to Airman First Class James Luke Whitacre, currently a student at the USAF Academy Preparatory School in Colorado.
Whitacre, who was salutatorian of the Class of 1977 at Zephyrhills High School, is the son of Raymond E. Whitacre. The appointment is a direct one, not a Senatorial appointment, it was noted.
ZHS Distance Runner Signs At Oral Roberts University on Track Grant, Zephyrhills News, April 26, 1979, by Bernard Wickstrom
One of the outstanding distance runners in Zephyrhills High School track history has reason for happiness this week. Paul White, who set a new school record for the 2-mile run a few weeks ago, and who also, holds the school 3-mile time record has signed a Letter of Intent with Oral Roberts University in Tulsa, Oklahoma, where he has been offered both track and academic scholarships to attend.
The track scholarship will be to run on the Missouri Valley Conference Titans’ cross country team. White was scouted by Oral Roberts University last Thanksgiving when he ran with some Title runners in a national meet at Tulsa.
Titan coach Lanny Endicott said, “I look forward to coaching Paul here at Oral Roberts. He is a late comer whose potential far exceeds his current ability, and I predict he will be very competitive nationally by his sophomore year.”
By a “Late Comer” Coach Endicott means that White is only now beginning to approach full development as a distance runner. Some high school runners mature early while others “peak” in their early college years, and White appears to be one of the latter the ORU coach says.
The ZHS 2-mile record was set two years ago by John Lovette at 10:37 minutes but last year in the District Track Meet, White smashed that mark with a fine 10:23 time. Then two weeks ago at Hernando he blistered the cinders with a sizzling 10:01 while competing against the state champion, Ronnie Treadway of Palmetto, whose state record time is just 10 seconds faster at 9:51.
“Our Region is the most competitive in the state with four first four finishers last year, and I will run again against Treadway in both the Regional and State Meet. If I can make it,” White told the News.
Asked why he is concentrating on the 2-mile event instead of the mile, in which White also does well, he explained: “I am putting all my cards on the 2-mile because there are three guys in our Region who are definitely faster than me in the mile.
My best time is 4:34 and the school record is 4:29.5.”
That record was set by ZHS Cross Country Coach Bob Dodd.
All Area Team
The personable ZHS senior also is interested in helping younger runners on the ZHS track scene and he regards sophomore, Mike Klaus as the hottest prospect coming up. Mike has already run the mile in 4:45 minutes. He needs to set his base for distances, and I predict he maybe will be pushing for state champion by his senior year said White.
School Daze by Darlene Roman, Zephyrhills News, May 24, 1979
Graduation is less than a month away and signs of that fact are becoming more and more visible each week…..
Grad Night at Walt Disney World, which was last weekend, was an example of this combination of sadness and excitement. Most everyone had a lot of fun from the time they boarded the buses at 8:30 p.m. Saturday until they unloaded the buses early Sunday morning.
Jone Mills Earns Golf Scholarship—First ZHS Girl Athlete So Honored, Zephyrhills News, May 24, 1979
The first Zephyrhills High School girl athlete ever to receive an athletic scholarship was announced this week by Troy State University. She will attend that school next fall on a golf scholarship.
Jone Mills, who received the Most Valuable Girl Golfer Award at both this year’s and last year’s All-Sports Awards Banquets said, “I’m real excited about getting this scholarship. This is the right move to make; I can work on my game and education at the same time.” Jone, who was voted “Best All Around” by her classmates, said “I learned by watching other people.” She did credit one person, Andra Douglas, a rugby player at Florida State University as having “helped me a lot getting started.”
FBLA Contest Winners, Zephyrhills News, February 1, 1979
Among the District 13 contest winners for Future Business Leaders of America Chapter at ZHS were: Kim Trimm, Beverly Williams, Darlene Roman, Lenore Cappuccilli, James Govreau, Brenda Mayne, Pam Madl, Cheryl Ordenes, Debra Sobers, Nancy DeBoe, and Judy Govreau.
ZHS Senior Named To Attend Annapolis, Zephyrhills News, May 31, 1979
The appointment of Aaron L. Gray III to the Naval Academy at Annapolis was announced this week by U.S. Senator Richard Stone (D.FL).
Gray is the son of Mr. and Mrs. Aaron L. Gray, Jr., of Zephyrhills. He will graduate in June from ZHS where he was a member of the band and president of the Science Club.
Gray’s appointment—a 4 year scholarship valued at more than $100,000—is one of about 1,300 that the Naval Academy is expected to make for the 1979-80 school year. He was among more than 800 Florida high school seniors who applied for an interview with a nominating board, composed of community leaders who interviewed 181 students and nominated Gray and 49 others.
Bulldogs Surprise Pasco, Zephyrhills News, January 11, 1979
Picture Caption: High Flyer—Zephyrhills Fred Lyle braces for the impact as a high-flying Pasco Pirate, seeking to prevent a basket by Bob Boyd of ZHS.
“I’ve had a lot of big wins in my coaching career and I’d have to say this win over Pasco was one of the top three since I’ve been at Zephyrhills,” said Coach Alan Reed.
School Daze by Darlene Roman, Zephyrhills News, April 5, 1979
The seven Art Club members who attended this past weekend came back enthusiastically aesthetic. Jennifer Green, Cheryl Rogers, Margaret Fried, Ron Springfield, Leonard Gehrke, Clayton Fritz, and Cheryl Ordenes were so motivated by the experience that the club meeting was just echoing with new ideas.
But, as the new ideas came in, some of the old ideas went out. One very “oldie but goodie,” was the “Painting of the Handball Court Project.” It seems that the Art Club had received permission to paint the eyesore last year, but due to their delay, the Boy Scouts had no other alternative than to come to the rescue of good ole’ Zephyr Park. They have already moved in with their cans of paint and have made incredible progress already.
Last Thursday that spectacular group of young singers which has sprung from ZHS, “The Great Expectations,” were on the road giving two concerts on the same evening in Dade City. One park in which they sang was gracious enough to treat them to a buffet supper. A very grateful member of the choral group said. “This is the first time this year that anyone cared enough to do that and they weren’t even from Zephyrhills!”
You just know that it’s near the end of the school year when the teachers start to publicly promote their programs in hopes of attracting new and interested students. This coming Monday and Wednesday the sophomores and juniors will undergo that yearly ritual called “orientation.” During this process, students become acquainted with and choose their prospective courses for the following year. This is when all the department heads come out in the open and confront students with an outline and goals of their particular course or program.
The ZHS Cooperative Program will also be giving a presentation before the students.
When the orientation at the high school is completed, orientation will be given at the junior high.
All the A or A-B honor roll students for the fourth quarter will be given a cake and punch social today in the cafeteria. The speaker is L.G. Edwards who will give a motivating speech on “The Power of Positive Thinking.”
The 1979 highlight event was undoubtedly the unveiling of the new football stadium. The plaque below which continues to be affixed to the stadium area, lists the many citizens, clubs, foundations, and business partners that contributed the the project:
Donors’ names that appear on the dedication plaque of the ZHS stadium
Contributing Contractors: Bruce Bahr, Ronnie Hill, Jerry Bennett, Bobby Hilton, Danny & Ken Burgess, Jimmy Morton, B.C. & Robert Douglas, Gerald Ripley, Dick Duffield, Nelson Ryman, Arthur “Art” Fish, Sam Surratt, Florida Power Corporation, and Carl Wells; In Memorial: Leroy C. Beddingfield, Lorena M. “Neukie” Neukom, Lee G. & Elsa B. Cass, John C. Partridge, Bill England, Vincent Peel, Del French, Lonnie Skinner, Charles B. & I.A. Krusen, Steve Smith, Woodrow Moore and Mary Ann Hodges Williamson. Officers of ZHS Bulldog Stadium Committee: Lester Bales, Jr., Chairman, Jimmy O. Williams, Vice-Chairman, Alice Hall, Secretary, Billy J. Brooks, Treasurer, and Directors—John F. Clements, William R. Eiland and Robert G. Howell. Contributors: AARP Chapter 191, Jack Eckerd Foundation, Perry & Louise Alston, Hinton B. Edmondson, Dr. & Mrs. E.D. Arnot, Ellis First National Bank, Mr. & Mrs. Emanuel Back, Robert & Frank Farrell, Ron & Edna Bahr, Arthur “Art” Fish, James A. & Patricia Bailey, Flagship Bank of Pasco County, Mr. & Mrs. Lester Bales, Florida Federal Savings & Loan, Bank of Pasco County, Mrs. Peg French, Alan & Ruth Barber, Walter R. & Lola Gall, Ralph & Ruth Barefoot, Owen E. & Anne Gall, Carrie Bassett, Larry & Patricia Bazzell, Nathan & Gail Geiger, Dr. B.S. Bedi, Jerry & Bonnie Geisel, Dr. S.S. Bedi, Alpha S. Gill, Best Western Motel, Fred & Faye Gore, R.G. & Jeanne E. Betts, Green Hills Community Club, Mr. & Mrs. Dan Boan, Alice (Mrs. Melville) Hall, Johanna E. Boylan, Raymond P. Hammond, Billy & Elizabeth Brooks, Rosa Hartman, Rex & Betty Brown, Raymond H. Hodges, Gwendolyn Burns, Bulldog Boosters Club, Zephyrhills Jaycees, C.F. Industries, Inc., Dorothy B. (Mrs. I.A. Krusen, Dr. & Mrs. Wm. C. Chandler, William A. Krusen, Robert & Eleanor Chadwell, Kiwanis Club, Citizens Bank of Pasco, Mr. & Mrs. Jim LaRussa, D. Wayne Clark, Ralph & H.E. “Gene” Lair, John F. & Beanie Clements, Lillian W. Lawrence, Grafton & Ella Cochrane, Don & Vivian Lewis, Clayton & Sandra Craddock, Lions Club, Marion & Ann Crawford, Lois Ann’s Studio of Dance, Larry & Bobbie J. Crosby, Crystal Pure Water Company, Doug & Dora Daniels, Howard & Joann Daughtery, Democratic Club, Nick & Daloris Deren, C. Fred Deuel & Associates, Drs. B. & U. Djokovich, Henry C. & Christine Douglas, Dr. & Mrs. Lewis P. Mann, Frank & Beverly Strout, Rev. and Mrs. Deloss Marken, Sun Press, Inc., Mr. & Mrs. James McGowan, Sunshine State Federal Savings & Loan, Mr. & Mrs. Mel Meengs, Sumner, Tyner, Williams, McKnight & Ross, Rick & Barbara Moore, James C. Swan, Moose Lodge 2276, Donald & Sharon Nelson, Arthur “Art” Tyson, Mr. & Mrs. George A. Neukom, Mr. & Mrs. George A. Neukom, Jr., United Veterans Council, Valleydale Estates, Otto’s Department Store, Ray E. & Leta Vanhorn, Mr. & Mrs. Dale Parker, Charles D. Waller, Pasco County School Board, West Elementary P.T.A., D.A. Pattie & Associates, Karl Wickstrom Memorial Fund, Ernest & Jimmie Peeples, Mr. & Mrs. B.Y. Wickstrom, Mr. & Mrs. Logan Peeples, George & Harriet Wickstrom, Pennsylvania Club, Jimmy D. & Margy Williams, Publix Super Markets, WPAS, Inc., Quail Hollow Elementary PTA, Youth Athletic Association, Ramey Realty, Zephyrhills High School, Mr. & Mrs. Lee Reed, ZHS Band, Bob & Sue Reffit, ZHS Track Fund, Richardson Funeral Home, ZHS DCT Club, Dr. & Mrs. A.M. Riley, ZHS Student Council, Rotary Club, ZHS Alumni Association to honor of Mrs. Warren E. Trottman , Neil & Rita Rucks Dairy, Zephyr Aviation, Inc., Dr. John E. Russell, Zephyr Post 118, American Legion, Mr. & Mrs. David Schneider, Zephyr Unit, 118, American Legion Ladies Auxiliary, Louis Sellers, Zephyrhills Middle School, Pat & Carol Sheppard, Zephyrhills Ministers Association, Mr. & Mrs. Fred D. Sisk, Zephyr Tones & Tonettes, Cullen Smith, Joseph T. Spoto, Col. & Mrs. H.A. Stewart, and Ray & Shirley Stewart.
Track Field Donors (1976)
ZHS Vocal Ensemble, Zephyrhills News, December 30, 1976
A new vocal group at ZHS this year is a Vocal Ensemble which made its first appearance at the annual Christmas Band Concert and sang last Thursday at the weekly meeting of the Rotary Club of Zephyrhills. Members are: Karen Holt, John Lovette, Tracy St. Onge, Joey Galyan, Vivian Webb, Kathy O’Malley, Earl Paul, Dottie Fraio, Eddie Hicks, Becky Walters, Joan Hyder and David Wolfe, Sound Engineer. The director is Dan Benham. The ensemble will be making other appearances in the community as invited.