Extraordinary, amazing, exceptional were words expressed about the 1958 Pearl High School Class’ presentation of its 55th reunion held the first week in August 2, 3, 4, 2013. The Reunion was held at the Holiday End Select on West End Avenue, Nashville. There were approximately 95 alumni available for entertainment and camaraderie.
The Mardi Gras, held on Friday, was narrated by the group’s president, Professor Albert Shaw.
Vivian Eaton Ray won first prize for the best costume. Everyone agreed that it was a magnificent affair. “The food was delicious and the entertainment was great,” said one the group. Those Pearl High students gathered were from various cities in—New York, California, Florida, Atlanta, Ga.; Chicago and Peoria Illinois; Texas; Mt. Juliet, TN; Manchester, Ct.; and other areas of the country. Everyone was elected that Freedom Rider Dr. Rip Patton cancelled his assigned tours to join in the festivities.
On Saturday, during the day, pictures were taken, stories were exchanged; the PHS Archives were visited; there was a historical tour of Nashville ( including old residential sites); a tour of Martin Luther King Magnet School at Pearl High School; as well a drive to the new Pearl Cohn High School.
On Saturday night the group emphasized the accomplishments and highlights of the students of 1958 that included key contributors and contributions. The group acknowledged that the “ ‘58 Class” was the best of Pearl High School. There was also a fashion show, narrated; and models were participating class members. The fashion show was coordinated by Barbara Dennis Coleman.
The final performance of the night was “awesome,” as the PHS 1958 international R&B star Charles ‘Wig’ Walker presented the audience with two songs that fascinated the those in attendance as well as hotel guest and employees. Some of the evening’s performers were not Class members, they were however relatives of classmates. The organizers wanted this weekend to be especially “1958 family owned.” Participating classmate family members were Charles Scott, who provided the music; and Ms. Margaret Beech, a comedienne and actress.
The food for the evening was delectable, great steaks and other foods. One of our classmates said, “The food was really a fantastic reward.”
Professor Luther Kirkpatrick was in charge of coordinating the Sunday event. The program was held at Swett’s Restaurant at 28th & Clifton. Program participants included: Bishop George Dunlap, shared God’s word and prayed; well-known gospel singer & actress, Marva Harris Starks and Delores Dunn Turner sang a duet; and Sylvia Hamilton Thomas introduced the guest speaker. Dianne Hemphill McDonald, wife of Dr. Reynard McDonald gave the keynote address. Kirkpatrick recognized past and present Class PHS chairpersons, Geraldine Johnson Searcy and Melvin Black. Kirkpatrick ended the day with prayer, acknowledging that it had been “A Day in the Lord.” Classmates came together to sing the alma mater.
Alumni officers PHS 1958: President Professor Albert Antonio Shaw; Vice-President Dr. Ann Dozier Turner-Brooks; Secretary Audrey Glover Hall; Advisor and Treasurer Vivian Eaton Ray; Asst. Treasurer James ‘Jim’ Campbell; Chaplain Sarah Apples; Corresponding Secretary Barbara Dennis Coleman; Assist. Chaplain Rev. Henry Kittrell; Parliamentarian Charlene Stuart; Historian Professor Luther Kirkpatrick.
*Dr. Ann Dozier Turner-Brooks is vice-president of PHS 1958.
See more photos in the People Section of this website