Founders & Alumni Directory
Vicki Harrell Ahlemann & Larry Ahlemann
Click on a picture to send an email to that person.
Louis Berger George Wilson
BURTONWOOD HIGH SCHOOL ALUMNI ASSOCIATION
PAST, PRESENT AND FUTURE
Spring 1991 When I found the Vapor Trails while helping my Dad clean out the garage and began looking for alumni, Vicki was working on the first Chateauroux reunion for over 50 people. I envisioned putting together a directory of alumni so people who hadn't seen or talked with each other for over 40 years could once again get together and reminisce about fond memories of Burtonwood.
1992-'97 I found Vicki in 1992. Vicki and I talked by phone, and we continued to look for people.
Oct. 1997 Vicki set up a reunion in Portland, OR when Ken Nuttall came over. She created a design and had T-shirts and sweatshirts made, and arranged for rooms and meals. I went to Portland a few days early to help get things set up. Following the reunion, Chuck Kittel donated lots of photos he took, and we began a pictorial binder. People sent us pictures of Burtonwood and current photos of them and their families. We set them up on pages with captions, had them copied, printed, mailed them to those who wanted a binder, and returned the original photos. As people have continued to send us photos, the binder has grown to a sizable Burtonwood history, along with current photos of people and reunions.
We sent the last pages to people this December. The binder is a nice reminder of Burtonwood. Now people can add their own photos, as some are already doing. George and Louis are also receiving photos and memories for the website.
Oct '97-'98 We continued finding people, and in Jan. '98, we surprised ourselves and everyone else and got married. In the spring of '98, we began making arrangements for the big OVERSEAS BRATS Homecoming '99 in Dallas, TX.
In Oct. 98 we arranged a small reunion in England with the help of Gerald Wamboldt, Patti McDermott Wamboldt's husband. Thank you very much, Gerald. Vicki and I went ahead of the others and set up hotels, and then we all went to visit Ken Nuttall.
Oct '98 - Aug '99 The hunt for people continued. We had new T-shirts made for everybody going to the Dallas reunion with the logo Andy Laiewski created back in the '50s. The reunion was a great success. We found George Wilson, or he found us, in spring of '99, and he has since spent countless hours taking photos at the reunion, finding people, creating a video of the reunion, and being an all around great resource. Since the reunion, we ordered and mailed an additional 40 T-shirts to people.
Fall '99 Louis Berger joined our group following the reunion in August and, like George, he has contributed countless hours as a consultant and the creator and master of our BHS Website. Without George or Louis, the Burtonwood Alumni Association would not be what it is today! We all continued finding more people and began knocking around the idea of another reunion in 2000.
During this time, we also planned a spur of the moment reunion at Sue Braudt Harriss home in Irvine, CA just before Thanksgiving. It was a lot of fun! Again, like the reunion in Portland, England,and Dallas, these were people we hadn't seen in over 40 years. Vicki and I figured it was time for someone else to plan a reunion. We sent out a request for volunteers and Bobby Morgan and his wife Alicia graciously accepted the challenge.
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Fall 2000 Our 2000 Reunion was in Las Vegas Oct. 4-6. There were 47 alumni with spouses and we had a great time. Many new faces were there. Bobby and Alicia did a great job and we thank them for stepping in and making a reunion possible. Also, thanks Jerry and Susie Garza for all the help you gave them. Ken and Mona Nuttall came from England and then continued from there on their "around the world trip". Mr. Nuttall had an aversion to flying, but when he decided to fly he really did it!
March 2001 The Texas contingent decided to get together in San Antonio with the help of George Wilson who was helping his son move from Dallas to Austin for his new job as Golf Course Superintendent for two golf courses. Gordon McDugle was in town visiting his father, so we finally got to see him. Jerry and Susie Garza opened their home to us and served a feast! Pat Tague (Nichols) brought lots of "oldies" on CDs and we had another Youth Center event. There were 13 of us and some spouses, who we thoroughly enjoy meeting!
Think about it. In 1991, there was no Burtonwood High School Alumni Association. There was a very small group of people from '54-'55 with whom Earl Mahoney maintained contact, and they had a small reunion with Ken Nuttall. Now, after many hours, phone calls, research, sweat, tears, and laughter, there is an organization with 140 alumni including 13 deceased.
We have an outstanding website! There are 80 T-shirts being worn with our logo letting the world know there was a place called Burtonwood. There are also 40 binders about Burtonwood High School.
How does this organization work? George Wilson is technical/photo/video advisor, was our official photographer at the Dallas and Las Vegas reunions, and has taken it upon himself to locate more of us. This is in addition to a hectic, full time job. He assists Louis Berger with editing and setting up photos on the website. Louis created our website and has his hands full maintaining, updating, and refining it. Vicki and I, as founders and organizers of the Burtonwood Alumni Association, created the Burtonwood alumni directory and organized reunions. We continue to hunt for people, maintain, update and mail the directory. We liaison with Burtonwood Association (the organization composed of English and Americans who were stationed and/or worked at Burtonwood), Warrington newspapers, OVERSEAS BRATS, and other alumni organizations. We are also in contact with Florence Reid, Mrs. Leigh’s daughter. She continually sends us historical items her mother had from Burtonwood. We will be contributing those to the American Overseas Schools Historical Society (AOSHS) in Wichita, KS.
Together we have accomplished what I envisioned when I began searching. We love you and want to see you all. Communication is very important in keeping an organization alive. If you have regional reunions, let everyone know. Who knows who might be able to attend! Please stay in touch with each other and keep the Burtonwood memories alive.
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