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Rodney Youngquist
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December 17, 1944 retired / wood restoration & finishing Married 2
 
After graduation went to U of M in Minneapolis for 2 years.. AA degree.. Then to Mankato State for a BA in Business Admin. 
Married Barb the day after graduation Dec 1967.
Worked for Bendix Corp and got into mainframe computer programming.   We moved back to Minneapolis, had Kim in 1970 and got divorced 1973… 
Met Nancy in 1976 and had Laura in 1982.. divorced in 1988. 
 
Worked as Computer programmer, database analyst & administrator for awhile.. then into technical support at NSP.
 
Made lots of mistakes over the years but my two girls are some of the best that has been given to me..
Kim lives in the cities and works now at Cargill. Not married and no children, keeps busy with Iron Man triathlons, and marathons. 
Laura lives in Madison, WI working for a  company that develops health care software for doctors/clinics and hospitals.
Not married but ‘ loves her boyfriend and Swing dancing too’.
 
Met Pat along the way and found out early on that we have the same birthday.. figured out that she is 20 minutes older than me.
That kept us in touch for many years and finally in 1995 we thought it might be good to get to know each other.    It took another 6 years to say the ‘M’ word.. and married in 2001.
We have 5 adult children with 2 grandsons in our blended family so far.
 
After 911 my career in computer technology dried up and so did my interest in 24 hr on-call and stress. 
Went to Vocational Technical school for Wood finishing Technology for a year.. the interest in working with my hands and being a wannabe artist for 35 years came together and now I do Wood Restoration, conservation and refinishing. 
The pay is less but the work is infinitely more satisfying. 
 
We will meet you at the reunion !
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Cherryl Zeidler (Gilmer)
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September 29, 1944 retired Married 3

We each left RHS 50 years ago with memories of great times and great friends.  I was among the 13 or so Spartans headed off to St. Olaf College. After receiving my BA there, I graduated from the University of Michigan Graduate School of Social Work with an MSW.  Years later I received a Certification in Volunteer Management from Metro State University.  My career started in a hospital setting, where I was a medical social worker, and ended at Courage Center, a rehabilitation center that empowers people with disabilities to realize their full potential in every aspect of life.  For 25 years I recruited, trained and coordinated the volunteers for Courage Center’s Sports and Recreation programs ranging from one-to-one ski instruction to all volunteer needs at national wheelchair basketball/softball/power soccer tournaments.  The cheerleader in me never left!

 

At St. Olaf College I met Steve Gilmer.  In 1967, when both of us were graduate students, we married and recently celebrated 45 years together.  We have three children, Laura, Wendy and Ryan and three energetic grandsons, Jackson, Bjorn and Theo who belong to Wendy and her husband, Jake.  Our grandchildren live only one mile from us so we often are a part of their active lives.  We live in the growing community of Delano, MN, where Steve is a banker and volunteer extraordinaire.  In 2010 he was chosen as Delano’s Citizen of the Year.

 

Steve and I love to travel, with Russia being one of our favorite destinations.  We enjoyed Germany and London when Wendy and Jake resided at these locations.  Other fun places we’ve been include China, Vietnam, Thailand, Norway, Greece, the Balkans, Ireland, Scotland, France, Mexican getaways and highlights of the USA.  We’ve discovered that people are wonderful everywhere.  Our travels have, also, made us appreciate home all the more.  My other hobbies include photography and scrapbooking, Minnesota TWINS games, getting together with friends and volunteering.

 

Being a mother and grandmother has been a wild ride!  The journey of ups and downs and ordinary events has been full of both growth and fun.  One experience of greatest significance was living through cancer when at age 11 our daughter, Laura, was diagnosed with leukemia.  The experience, including three chemo years, impacted our whole family.  Laura survived.  We survived.

 

Another impactful life event for me was seeing a child with a physical disability achieve his sports goal in Courage Center’s competitive swimming program.  At a regional qualifying swim meet this swimmer took 17 minutes to swim 25 yards, but he never gave up.  As I watched this child, I, also, watched tears drop from his volunteer coach’s eyes.  In the same moment I understood sheer determination and effort and caring at its deepest level.

 

What have I learned in the last 68 years?  1) We all can and do make a difference in another person’s life, each in our own way.  2) When you give your time and talents to others, you receive far more than you give.  3) Work hard for something you want to achieve or to help change.  4) You need to be a friend to have a friend.  5) Let your family and friends know you love them – tell them, show them – because you don’t know how long you can.  6) Laugh much and love deeply.

 

When I think of RHS and our class, my lasting memory is the power of our school spirit.  It made us inclusive and proud.  We cheered our talented sports teams, had fun at sock hops/dances, in band and choir, in clubs and plays and we knew our teachers and coaches supported us.  We liked each other.

 

Wish I could be with you to celebrate our 50th.  Have a grand time.  I’ll be out of state, however, on Reunion evening, I’ll lift my glass to toast you all!   

 

 

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