Marshall Historical Society

Congratulations to the Waterville Class of 1944
by George E. Westcott
The Academic Union and The Waterville Times and Hop Reporter

The following editorial appeared in the Academic Union, the yearbook of the Waterville Central School, in 1944 and in The Waterville Times and Hop Reporter. It was written by George E. Westcott, who was the editor of the Waterville Times at that time.

All Aboard For Berlin! Heads up! Cheer up! Hitler is on the run. The year 1944 will go down in history as one of the most outstanding. Firstly, we must congratulate the Class of 1944 and wish them the best of luck. They are stepping out into a world of strife, of hatred, and of chaos.

Secondly, 1944, will decide the result of the war. Democracy is at the crossroads and must win, or our freedom will be lost for all time. Such a condition our brave boys are fighting desperately and far from home. They now can look back and appreciate their school days as one of the happiest periods of their lives, free from responsibility, free from care, and free in expression.

Thirdly, 1944 will have another presidential election, and again Democracy is on trial. Some people suggest the elimination of election day, but no, Democracy will be stronger as a nation by abiding by the laws of the Constitution. We are tested from time to time as to our courage and our ability to carry on.

We are proud of being Americans, and we should thank God that it is so. We came very near to a basic change in our thinking - one that would substitute a standard of living, of spending and carelessness for a deeper faith of being civilized. The war has brought to the surface the meaning of civilization.

What is a civilized man? He is a man who puts himself under a personal self-discipline to gain a higher standard of right and wrong. A civilized nation is the same, but is controlled by its majority and not by a dictator. The war, terrible as it is, brings us to the realization that material success is not enough for our standard of living, but must include our social and religious faith.

The graduating class may be handicapped by the present world unrest, but it also may be a blessing in disguise. An old sheik in India once said, "The western world does not listen. It is in too much of a hurry. To receive help and understanding, take time out from your daily duties and listen." That is splendid advice, and by so doing you will receive priceless suggestions and inspirations.

We are living in a most wonderful world that can give amazing results, if we will only be in harmony with the earth's vibrations and listen.

May the members of the graduation class reach their desire for fame as they face the future.

Members of the class of '44 who have entered the armed services of the United States are: Charles Angier, Donald Brashear, Dorman Draheim, Donald Dunster, William Duvelow, Robert Hughes, George Inles, William Jannone, Clarence Kellar, Anthony Langone, William Wedgren.

Eleven high school boys of the senior class took the Army-Navy test on Wednesday, March 15, 1944. They were: Daniel Condon, Charles Davidson, Gerald Gallup, Harry Goodson, Frank Haggerty, Charles Jackson, William O'Dowd, Charles Roberts, Ted Townsend, Hugh White, John Youngs.

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