John F. Kennedy High School

John F. Kennedy High School opened for classes on February 8, 1965. The 1965-66 enrollment was 1,359 students. In 1966, John F. Kennedy High School graduated 399 students in its first graduating class.

WALK DOWN MEMORY LANE..BY JOHN PANTALONE

I remember...
February 1965 when we moved from Taylor Center High to a brand new sparkling Kennedy High. We only had 10th and 11th graders that semester. From then on everything was a first in our school lives--being a member of the first graduating class in 1966, the first marching band, the first football game, and on and on.

I remember how big the building seemed and all of a sudden it became overcrowded and we had to go to split days with the Junior and Senior classes in the morning session, and the 10th grade in the afternoon, I recall having classes in the library and large group sessions in the cafeteria with three teachers teaching social studies to one large group.

Do you remember when the cafeteria was not large enough to feed everyone and we had to have food stations at the ends of the halls? As crowded as we were, it was still a sad day, when, in 1973, Truman High was opened and we lost a portion of our student body and of our excellent teaching staff.

Do you remember the great marching bands under the direction of Roger Craig? They were invited to perform at Lions games, Thanksgiving Day Parades, etc. The band built their own bridge over a little creek north of the building so they could practice on the field between Northline and JFK.

How about the speed bumps on the drive coming off of Northline? On a weekend night someone came in and removed them. We never did find out who did it. Is there a confession out there?

What great athletic banquets we had! In 1970, Mr Haarala was the MC and the guest speaker was--can you believe--Gordy Howe of the Detroit Red Wings.

In 1974, the MC was Donovan Hanson, and the guest speaker--again hard to imagine--was Bo Schembechler (I think Mr. Dickelman had something to do with this), and then in 1975 we had Dick Vitale as the guest speaker. I cannot imagine that there are many high schools in the country with a lineup of guest speakers like that.