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               Monday, July 15 2002  

Where are they now? Phyllis (Burkhart) Wood

Phyllis Burkhart Wood in a recent photo, left, and in 1953 ECHS senior class photo, right.

Jackson Township native Phyllis (Burkhart) Wood was born February 26, 1935, to Woodrow and Irene (Dyson) Burkhart. She is a sister to eight siblings, one of whom, her oldest brother, is deceased, having been killed at the age of 19 during the Korean Conflict while being held as a prisoner of War.

A 1953 graduate of Ebensburg Cambria High School who had a desire to travel, she enlisted in the U. S. Navy in 1954. "I always wanted to be in the military. In the military you could learn a trade or go to school; when you were discharged from active duty, you could go to college on the G.I. Bill, which was my plan." As for her hopes of travel while in the Navy, "In those days, the only place a female in the navy could go was Hawaii....and that required a re-enlistment. Women weren't assigned to ships at that time."

Married to Lubbock, Texas, native Bobby Wood since 1955, she and Bob are the parents of three grown children: Pamela, 44; Dirk, 42, and Park, 36. Three grandchildren complete the family unit. Though now retired, she and husband Bob's part ownership in a 32-lane bowling center enabled her to fulfill her dreams of travel. As a member of several top-notch bowling teams, she has traveled to tournament competitions in Mexico, Hawaii, Canada, and several U.S. cities.

A resident of Lubbock for the past 47 years, the western Pennsylvania "you-ones" has been replaced by a west Texas drawl and a "ya'll," but she still misses a few things about our local area. "I miss the scenery, the green hills and valleys. I miss the autumn with the changing of the leaves. Where I live, it's flat and brown with lots of cotton fields and cattle with an oil well here and there. But, I don't miss those Pennsylvania winters with all that snow. We only get one or two light snowfalls per winter."

Like many ex-residents who now call other places home, there are many fond memories of growing up in our our area. "I remember the fun we had at the Teen Canteen in the basement of the Nanty Glo Firehall, dancing at Mitchell's Restaurant (later to be known as Newman's) in that tiny room off to the side, Hagen's Restaurant (later the K&B), the dances with live bands that were held at the Miner's Hall, and roller skating at the old Cicero's Roller Rink at the Cambria County Fairgrounds."

Arranging to get home once a year for the family reunion has enabled her to maintain family ties. Her hobbies these days include woodworking, needlework, flea markets, and restoring neglected and weather-worn wicker furniture and collecting southwest handmade pottery. At the New Mexico vacation home that was 10 years in the building phase, looking for Native American artifacts like arrowheads and pottery shards that are many hundreds of years old has been fun and interesting.

Steady employment and a secure future are her hopes for family and friends here in the area. Like many of us "country kids" who considered Nanty Glo our home town, she wishes for Nanty Glo to once again be the vibrant and alive place it once was. Anyone wishing to send greetings may send them to HRoses2@peoplepc.com or Womanwarier@aol.com.

If you have a suggestion for a subject for Where Are They Now, please write Judy Rose at highlandrose43@yahoo.com.

Hymns for the over-50 crowd (series)

5. "Count Your Many 'Birthdays,' Count Them One By One"
4. "Go Tell It On A Mountain," But Speak Up"

— Sent by Bob Kennedy

Thought for today

God will give His angels charge of you to guard you in all your ways (cf. Psalm 91:11).

The angel of the Lord encamps around those who fear Him and delivers them (Psalm 34:7).

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