Ernie Stripe, Class of ’32, Still Going Strong

Congratulations to Ernestine "Ernie" Stripe, a loyal reader from San Clemente, California, who Ernieralph_3
recently attended her 75th high school class reunion in Chambersburg, Pennsylvania. The photo shows Ernie, who is 92 years young, and her husband, Ralph, standing in front of the office building that used to be Chambersburg Senior High School. They’re holding a copy of their local Sun Post News, so they could appear in the paper’s Where in the World? feature. Apparently, attending your 75th high school reunion isn’t newsworthy enough — you have to be holding the darn paper.

The class reunion did make the news in Chambersburg, where Tracy Panzer of Public Opinion (my former newspaper) wrote about Ernie’s enduring friendship with her classmate Pam Erickson.

Erickson, of Chambersburg, and Stripe, a California resident, were among the 10 Class of ’32 graduates who gathered Monday for the reunion. The classmates talked about days gone by, shared a meal and cake, and sang the class song, "Senior Chantey." They donned corsages and boutonniere provided by All Occasion Florists.

It was the first time many have seen or talked to their classmates in years.

Not so for Erickson and Stripe, who communicate nearly every day via e-mail.

"I laughed because I hardly have gotten any e-mails since Ernie got into town," Erickson said. [Link]


Two 92-year-olds emailing each other almost every day — that’s what’s great about the Internet. If you’re wondering what they write to each other about, it’s just the usual stuff: which tunes to download to their iPods and whether to buy an iPhone.

If you enjoyed this piece, you'll love Melvin's novel Bala Takes the Plunge, available in North America through Amazon.com and McNallyRobinson.com You can also find it at major bookstores in India and Sri Lanka or online at FlipKart, IndiaPlaza, FriendsofBooks or other sites. A number of readers have written reviews of the novel. An excerpt of the novel can be read here.

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