Echoes From the Searcy Class of 1980

20-year Reunion Message, June 30-July 1, 2000



ur senior year saw the closing of the Seventies, and as we see yet another decade unfolding before us, we pause to consider the year that began the Eighties and that began our lives after high school as well. The headlines during the 1979-80 school year were dominated by the Iranian hostage crisis and the boycott of the Moscow Olympics. As President Carter was besieged by these troubles, a former actor from California named Ronald Reagan announced his candidacy for the presidency. The country worried about how to clean up Three Mile Island. A previously obscure volcano called Mt. St. Helens erupted. In a sign that some things never change, the headlines reflected unrest in Central America and South Africa. Dan Rather succeeded Walter Kronkite as CBS anchorman and the Tennessee Board of Medical Examiners revoked the license of Elvis’ Dr. Nick.

The Pittsburgh Steelers wont he Super Bowl for the fourth time and the Baltimore Orioles won the World Series. Prominent names were Bjorn Borg, Martina Navratilova and Sugar Ray Leonard. Muhammad Ali was named the Athlete of the Decade by sportswriters.

In the entertainment world, Ordinary People won the Academy Award for Best Picture, Robert DeNiro won the Best Actor Award for Raging Bull, and Sissy Spacek received the Oscar for Best Actress in Coal Miner’s Daughter. Other box office hits were Acocalypse Now, The Empire Strikes Back, Norma Rae, The Jerk and 10. The year also introduced a movie legacy that is with us still: both Friday the 13th and Halloween appeared on the big screen. Songs at the top of the charts were "Heartache Tonight" by the Eagles, "Another Brick in the Wall" by Pink Floyd, Styx’s "Babe," "Rock With You" by Michael Jackson, and one of the songs that tolled the death knell for disco, "Funkytown."

Gil Stegall But for the most part, we didn’t care about that at all. We were concerned about Homecoming, reigned over by Queen Terri Joseph and Senior Maid Thelma Darden. Senior Teresa Barber was Lion Beauty. Senior officers on the Student Council were Mike Simpfenderfer, President; Robin Taylor, Secretary/Treasurer; and Mitzi Washington, Student Advisor. Senior Class Officers were Lyndee Adams, President; Teresa Swindle, Vice-President; and Dana Van Patten, Secretary/Treasurer. Seniors who played football for the Lions were Brad Boedecker, Ricky Pasley, J.D. Usery, Ronnie Pasley, John Chapman, Andy Tedder and the late Gill Stegall, who led in rushing, punting and scoring. Senior basketball players were Ricky Pasley, Reed Gardner, Booth Randy, Keith Roush and Jay Nicholson. The girls’ basketball team was led by senior Judy Warren. The tennis team finished the season with a 5-2 record led by senior Jay Nicholson, Reed Gardner, Kent Kamerman and Booth Rand.

The Fine Arts Department presented the musical "Hello Dolly," the first SHS musical produced in 10 years, with Dana Van Patten and J.D. Usery in leading roles. Seniors performed a play entitled "The Curious Savage." Seniors who qualified for All-State Band were Mitzi Washington, Paul Turner and Debra Vaughn. All-State Choir participants were Kenny Miller and Dana Van Patten.