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Class Reunion Stories -
Lost Loves Reunited 1


Class reunions can be nerve-racking but usually end up exhilarating – renewing friendships, sharing memories of the the days when we were "young and innocent." Share your class reunion stories, e-mail us.


Life after the 40th Reunion
A Love Story
By Donald L. Dereadt

During the twenty-five years I spent in the military, I lost contact with many friends and acquaintances. Then one unsuspecting day, I received an email from the Osborn High School (Detroit, Michigan) reunion chairperson. After a long and exhausting search, I received an invite to our upcoming 40th reunion. I attended the reunion and it completely changed my life forever. So much so, that I later sent her the following letter:

"Nancy, your relentless efforts searching for missing class members brought me to my first reunion. Moments after I entered the reunion hall, I ran into my childhood neighbor, Sandi. We grew up best of friends, both attending Gabriel Richard Grade School and Osborn High. Although Sandi and I never formally dated, we were part of a group that enjoyed parties, dances and just hanging around. There always seemed to be a special attraction between us, but for the most part, Sandi and I were always there for each other.

We became re-acquainted at the reunion and brought each other up to date on our lives. We enjoyed dinner with fellow classmates, talked, danced and before the reunion was over, we exchanged contact information. About a year later, I asked her out to a July 4th celebration. Instead, she invited me to her family BBQ where I met her son and daughter along with their spouses and grandchildren. Throughout the ensuing months, we saw more of each other, and before long, we knew we were in love and eventually we married.

So you see, your efforts in locating classmates not only proved rewarding, they had a profound effect on our lives by allowing us to reunite and to fall in love. We both thank you for your perseverance and ask that you never give up until the last missing grad is found - it may turn out to be the most important day of their life."

About the author
Donald L. Dereadt lives and writes in Shelby Township, Michigan.




Sweethearts to wed at 45th Ball High reunion

Charles Doug Sanders was the handsome senior all the girls liked at Ball High School in Galveston, Texas. But he was sweet on just Susan Carpenter, a pretty blonde flute player in the band. He even offhandedly proposed in 1967 but she never replied. They went separate ways in college.

Fast-forward 45 years. The high school sweethearts have reunited and married at their 45th class reunion in Galveston. Guests were family, friends and the Class of 1967.

“It was that relationship that got away,” said Heather Bright Harkleroad, daughter of now Susan Carpenter Branche. “They always wondered where the other was.” In those years, Branche and her daughter moved from Galveston to California and eventually to Portsmouth, Virginia.

“The wedding couple is ecstatic to be reunited and very excited to be getting married at their high school reunion, where it all began 45 years ago,” said Harkleroad.

Sanders’ wife of 41 years lost her battle with cancer. They raised two sons and a daughter in Oklahoma. His children encouraged him to join Facebook and touch base with old high school friends. One of his first contacts was Branche. 

When they reconnected, it was almost like they hadn’t parted. They talked every day for a month. Sanders flew to Virginia Thanksgiving to propose one more time. 

He got down on one knee and asked her right there at the airport. People all around clapped and cheered. He talked about it the whole flight, so the whole plane stood around to wait for him to find her and propose.

Branche said yes this time. The couple makes their home in Beaver, Oklahoma.
“They’re as happy as can be,” Harkleroad said. “They’re finally back together.”

From a story by Bronwyn Turner in the Galveston Daily News, Galveston, Texas.


20 years later, couple reunites at high school reunion
Melanie Young, 57, is big on reunions. She's planned three at her high school in Maryland. "Everyone I know -- whatever age they are -- if they're single, I say 'Go to your reunions!'" That's because 17 years ago, at a high school reunion, Melanie's life changed forever for the better.
In 1973, Melanie Blair was a "hippie art student" in Frederick, Maryland. She was friends with Dale Young, a boy in the band. The night of graduation, they became something more. They spent beach week in Ocean City and most of the summer together. Then, they broke up and he went off to the Air Force. She saw him the following summer -- but he was with another girl.
Then 20 years went by.

Melanie got out of school, married and divorced, lived in Canada and California, and eventually settled in Virginia. Dale got out of the Air Force, moved back to his hometown. They met again at their 20th high school reunion, but he was with a date. Melanie said, "I asked him to dance and he said no."

Two years later, on the eve of her 40th birthday, single and living in a very expensive part of northern Virginia, Melanie decided to transfer her job to Maryland, and moved back to her hometown just in time for her high school's "40th birthday reunion."

Dale was alone. They spent that evening together and the next night went out. That was late August, they married the following January.

When Dale -- who everyone thought was a confirmed bachelor -- told his widowed grandmother he was marrying, she took off her wedding band and handed it to him. "Use that to marry Melanie," she said.

The couple wed in a simple ceremony at the courthouse. They went to lunch, then went to tell their parents.

From a story by Laura Rowley in the Huffington Post.



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