BY DAYTONA TIMES STAFF
Mayola Rice Williams has fond memories of her years at Campbell Senior High School in Daytona Beach.
She remembers a family atmosphere, teachers who cared, and plenty of fun activities. Williams and fellow members of the Class of 1967 remembered those times last weekend during their 50th class reunion held at different venues around the city. About 50 classmates attended the reunion.
The all-Black high school in Daytona Beach, was operational from 1929 until 1969. Volusia County schools integrated in 1970.
“Even though it was 50 years ago, it was just great being at an all-Black school, recalled Williams, treasurer of the reunion committee. “The teachers actually cared about us, our education. … They knew your parents, socialized with your parents and they had permission to discipline you,’ she told the Daytona Times this week.
Several of those teachers – Harold Lucas, Jeannette Merritt and George Whitehead – were recognized at a banquet Saturday night at the Palmetto Club.
Williams remembers having Mrs. Merritt as her 10th-grade geometry teacher. She added that Mr. Lucas was a driver’s education teacher and coach, while Mr. Whitehead taught science.
Events for the Campbell Centipedes and their guests started June 1 with a Meet and Greet at the home of Jennifer Jones Stalling. On June 2, classmates met for breakfast at a soul food restaurant in Daytona Beach. A cookout organized by the male classmates took place on Saturday at Colin’s Park.
The reunion culminated with classmates worshiping on Sunday at Greater Friendship Baptist Church followed by a brunch and memorial service at the Palmetto Club. More than 60 deceased members were remembered at the service.
‘A fabulous time’
While most of the class members live in Florida, there were some from out of state. The classmate who traveled the farthest was Agnes Parker Green, who lives in California.
“The reunion was wonderful. Everyone had a fabulous time. Everyone enjoyed it so much. I’ve gotten calls from out of town classmates who said they had a really wonderful time and appreciated everything we did to make it successful,” Williams related.
The committee had been working on the 50th reunion for a year, Williams said, noting that the president was Jennifer Loper Adams of Orlando.
The Class of 1967 has a reunion every five years but gets together more often. During the 2016 holidays, the class held a Meet and Greet at Vince Carter’s restaurant in Daytona.