South High School Class of '43 celebrates 75th Reunion


In 1943, America was at war, Franklin D. Roosevelt was president, and Norma Jacks was falling in love.

"I remember our senior prom because I eventually married the young man who took me," she said.

The Columbus South High School Class of 1943 came together Wednesday at Barcelona restaurant to celebrate a lifetime of friendship.

"Everyone that I know that has heard about this has said how could you still be getting together after 75 years? It's not possible," said Jacks.

Jacks and Don Lund are the only two surviving members of the high school reunion committee. They used to get together once every 10 years, then every five.

"As we all got older and more ancient, we decided we better go one year," said Lund. The group lost four classmates this year alone.

"It happens," said Lund. "And we keep going."

The group flipped through old yearbooks and newspaper clippings, revealing photos of teenagers with their whole lives ahead of them. Jacks said 75 years later, it's a blessing for old friends to come together.

"Most of us had to have somebody bring us, but we're here."

The class of '43 grew up together in uncertain times. Two members seated at the table survived the Battle of the Bulge and the Normandy Invasion.

Most of the graduates married. They had children, grandchildren, and now, great-grandchildren. Lund and Jacks said they do their best to navigate a world gone digital.

"So much more is automated, the cell phones," said Lund.

"I don't feel connected. They've lost me," laughed Jacks.

Once a year, there is no mistaking the connection between classmates who share a lifetime of friendships.

"I think that everyone that's here today feels that they're coming together with treasures, said Lund.

She told the group the 75th reunion would be the last.

"You said that last year," heckled one classmate, followed by a peal of laughter in the room.