Carole (Snyder) Ferguson, class of 1961

I am happy you enjoyed the photos of my family.  It is a wonderful family.  My older son, Erik, was just here for a few days.  He was representing his company at a local show in Orlando and was able to spend a few days with us.  He sells kayaks.  On Sat. Doug & his whole family will be here.  He, Sara  & Gabe will be here for four days then they leave and the two little girls will stay for about two weeks.  They will leave and our two older granddaughters will come for the last two weeks before school starts.  So, from now until the last of Aug. I will have some of them here.  It will be busy and wonderful.

Here is a story about my family and me. If I get too carried away, feel free to edit.

I've led a wonderful life since graduating from HHS in 1961.  I went to college where I met my future husband.  Don and I have been married for forty-four years now.  WOW!  Before my marriage I was a medical secretary and worked at Nassau Hospital in the Cancer Research Dept for Dr. Min C. Li.  That was a wonderful experience and helped me to appreciate my many blessings.   I also had a very successful antique business for several years and was secretary/bookkeeper at our golf club in Carlisle, PA. 

Don was in the Army (artillery corps) when we married.  We have lived in Germany, Turkey and several places in the United States.  Turkey was our favorite tour.  Wonderful country - wonderful people.  While living in Ankara I became an American tour guide and was able to visit most of the Middle East, including Israel and Egypt, Russia, Greece and, of course, most of Turkey.  I was able to go rug buying with a Turkish friend who owned a rug shop in Ankara.  Ahmed took me to tiny villages where the mothers and children wove the beautiful rugs and I was even able to try it myself.  Somewhere there's a tourist who bought a rug partially woven by a girl from Hicksville!  In Israel, after the rest of the tour group returned to Turkey, I stayed on at the home of our Israeli guide and saw things the average tourist does not see.  While I was there the first bus bombing occurred in Tel Aviv and I witnessed the citizens change from civilian to military in a few hours.  I visited the Golan Heights, stayed at a kibbutz and in the tent of some nomads.  Nomads with Toyota pick-up trucks parked outside with the camels and TVís in the tents!   Egypt was beyond description.  Probably my favorite place on earth!  Don chose to retire in FL over Karnak, Egypt where I wanted to go!  In between the accompanied tours, Don served in Korea and Viet Nam.  After retirement, Don worked as a CPA and was the financial officer for Carlisle, PA until he bought a bar!  We had the bar for ten years. 

While all of this was going on, Don and I became the parents of two boys, Erik (1966) and Doug (1968).  They have been good sons and being very different from each other they kept us from being bored. 

Erik is a free spirit - lives day to day, likes hands-on work, no schedule, and wears sandals year-round.  He was an Eagle Scout.  If I want something, he can make it for me.  After a tour in the Army he came home and was partners with Don in the bar until we sold it.  He lives in Wyomissing, PA (near Reading) and has two daughters, Sarah (18) and Leah (16).  He is married to his second wife, Angie, who has a son, Zach (20).  Erik worked in food services until he could no longer stand having a "real job" and went with his first love, kayaking.  He works for a kayak company as project manager.  He also takes people out on kayak trips.  Everyone in his family has their own kayak.  His favorite thing is cave kayaking.  He first experienced this when in Belize.  He and Angie and a group of equally crazy kayakers go out on the Susquehanna River every Jan. 1st!!  Brrrr!  Erik says his brother can have Europe - he'll take Key West!  He and Angie are also chef-quality cooks and do some catering.  Angie is in the food services business and works with school systems in the northeastern states.

Doug likes computers & organization, quit the Boy Scouts when they started camping out regardless of the weather and wears button-down shirts.  He lives in Stroudsburg, PA.  His wife, Sara, is a singer.  She was trained in opera but mostly does local musicals now & has a music studio.  Doug & Sara used to go to Prague and Budapest every summer for several weeks for some opera masters' classes.  They love to travel and BC (before children) saw most of Europe.  They became engaged in Venice.  Doug went to college with a journalism major and used his degree for, oh, about a year.  He got into computers and has had several good jobs over the years.  He worked for Marsh  & McLennon.  The corporation was in offices on 8 floors of the North Tower of the World Trade Center, between floors 93 and 100. When the plane crashed into the building during the 9/11 attacks, their offices composed the entire impact zone, which was between floors 93 and 99. Doug was not there - everyone who was, died.  I think 398 employees died that day.  He stayed with them for about a year but then left.  He now writes most of the computer programs for Johnson & Johnson sales representatives.  He's very happy with this job since he works out of his home and can be a "stay-at-home dad".  Doug has three children, Catherine (6), Sophia (3) and, finally our grandson, Gabriel (9 mos). 

Don and I are retired and live in The Villages, FL.  It is an hour NW of Orlando.  I love to golf.  I also have finally started tap dancing!  A friend and I started an animal rescue group, Pet Lovers Rescue, about four years ago and are now one of the best-known & successful groups in this part of Florida.  It is so very rewarding.  We not only help the animals, but we also have helped a lot of people with our pets.  At times a house full of cats and kittens can get to be a bit much, but, thank God, Don is usually pretty cool with it.   In fact, while writing this I had to stop and run out because someone dropped off three 4-week old kittens at a local store.  Anyone want a kitten??  That makes seven kittens and a cat besides my four cats.  Don't wear black if you visit me!  

Life has been good.  If any of you come this way, give me a call.  A lot of people from Hicksville live here - and I seem to meet new ones all the time.  A few of us from HHS '61 got together in March.  It was fun visiting and reminiscing.  My email address is missphit243@aol.com  I'd love to hear from my former classmates. 

Carole (Snyder) Ferguson, class of 1961