The Kanawha Alumni Association (KAA) celebrated its 96th annual reunion on Saturday, May 23, starting off with a parade that featured 1959 Burnsville High School graduate David Parmer and his wife, Barbara (Jeffries) Parmer, as parade marshals. The theme of "Be True to Your School" was present throughout the parade and other weekend festivities.
At the post-parade ceremony, American Legion Post 33 was on hand to lead the crowd in the Pledge of Allegiance while the Braxton County High School Marching Band played the National Anthem and provided other musical entertainment.
Master of Ceremonies, Butch McPherson, led the crowd in a moment of silence in memory of veterans and fallen soldiers. Later on, he presented awards to the top four parade participants: first place, the Class of 1965; second place, the Lady Bruins softball team; third place, the Class of 1960; and fourth place to the Burnsville Outlaws Tee-Ball team.
That afternoon at the Burnsville Public Library David Parmer discussed his three books, including the most recent titled Burnsville: A Pictorial History. In addition to interacting with the audience, he also encouraged those in attendance to share pictures and memories from their own lives for the second volume of his Burnsville history book.
Returning alumni and friends gathered at the school beginning at 4:00 p.m. for the annual business meeting and scholarship presentations. The meeting was called to order by President Tom Crutchfield after an opening skit that featured Crutchfield as a schoolteacher in a classroom with his three pupils. Those 'students' being KAA recording secretary Paul Peck (who donned a dunce cap for the occasion), a paper airplane-throwing Jennings Dancy (who later delivered the invocation and benediction), and KAA Vice President Butch McPherson (who was busy writing 'I will not whisper in class' on the blackboard when the curtain opened). After the fun, ten current Burnsville Elementary School sixth grade students who acted as servers for the dinner were introduced. Those students were: Logan Conley, Cameron and Conner Bragg, Noah Allen, Kacie Drake, Camylle Leake, Izzabelle Smith, Haley Fincham, Chandler Herron, and Elissa Coffman. Fincham then read a poem originally written by Bea (Bosley) Brown titled The Old School Speaks.
Four new inductees then took the oath and became official association members. They were Megan Rae Dean, Sarah E. Mallory, Shayne Richard Aud Heater, and Carol A. Desper. Four individual $500 KAA scholarships went to Megan Dean, Sarah Mallory, Shayne Heater, and Brady Heater. The Claud 'Bud' Mick Scholarships went to Megan Dean and Sarah Mallory.
The Bruin Award was presented to Paul Peck. Recognition of the 2015 Alumnus of the Year was given to Tom Crutchfield and Alumna of the Year was given to Carla (Mick) Conley. Additionally, Mary Moran Bush and Jearld V. Moran were recognized as the oldest alumni in attendance at the event.
With the exception of the vice president's position, which will now be held by Donna (Conrad) Singleton, the previous slate of KAA officers were reinstated. At the end of the meeting, Dick Graff held an auction for items donated to the association which raised over $400. Items included a quilt topper, rocking chair, historical panorama of Burnsville, and other assorted items and memorabilia.
Following the meeting, a baked steak dinner was served to around 200 returning alumni, newly inducted seniors, friends, and guests. Special thanks to Anita Miller and Helen Harper for preparing the lovely meal. The full day of events concluded with music and dancing in the school gymnasium. Entertainment was provided by local DJ, Bobby Stell.
Festivities for the reunion weekend began on Friday evening with the annual Burnsville School Reunion on the football field behind the school. There, a large crowd enjoyed an extensive potluck buffet and cookout. Attendees enjoyed bluegrass music and songs by Lois (Ramsey) Budd throughout the evening also. The weekend wrapped up on Sunday with the Burnsville United Methodist Church holding a service as they celebrated 100 years of fellowship in the community. KAA members also placed memorial roses on the graves of former BHS educators who are interred at the Knights of Pythias cemetery in Burnsville.
Alumni and guests attending included: Brenda Adkins, John Armentrout, Margaret Bragg Armentrout, Gentalee Steele Blake, Mary C. Blake, Matt Blake, Thomas J. Blake, Kenneth Bosley, William Jack Bosley, Iverna Bouch, Margaret Blake Boyd, Sharon Conrad Brady, Barbara Brown Bragg, Denise Butt Bragg, Joseph Bragg, Patty Conrad Bragg, Paul W. Bragg, Jerry Brown, Mary Sizemore Brown, Ronald Brown, Tammy Allen Brown, John J. Bush, Mary Moran Bush, Bernard Butler, Roberta Singleton Butler, Sheila Bragg Butler, Corene Stump Carey, Debbie Steele Carroll, James N. Carter, Jr., Kathleen Carter, Betty Carson, Lamona Brown Casto, Roger Clark, Twila McPherson Clark, Bruce Clutter, Hilda Brown Clutter, Patty Graff Cobb, Barbara Conley, Carla Mick Conley, Howard Conley, Billy Conrad, Karla McPherson Conrad, Ressie Wine Conrad, Dustin Crutchfield, Tom Crutchfield, Anna Cunningham, Carl Cunningham, Pam Brown Cuppari, Carol Goodrich Dean, Jack Dean, Linda Posey Dean, Megan Rae Dean, Shannon Dean, Carol Desper, Shelba K. Skinner Deavers, Becky Durrett, Tom Durrett, Leo Earlenbaugh, Sue Singleton Earlenbaugh, Joan Wiant Fields, Jean Stump Garber, Barbara Gibson, Brenda Snyder Gibson, Burnard Gibson, Roger Gibson, Max Gillespie, Jr., James Godfrey, Susie Godfrey, Bob Graff, Carolyn Pulliam Graff, Dick Graff, Linda Jeffries Graff, Richard Graff, Dean Townsend Grooms, Roberta Hall, Julie Hayward, Brady Heater, Debra Heater-Peters, Lena Heater, Noah Junior Heater, Shayne Heater, Vivianne Hefner, Patsy Flint Heavner, Eva Brown Hinkle, Wayne Hinkle, Harvey Hoover, Loretta Brown Hoover, Robert Jack, Jerry Kelley, Mary McPherson Kelley, Robert Kelley, Shirley Straley Kelley, Marilyn Godfrey Kiddy, Harold Kuhl, Bonnie Mick Kuhn, Fred W. Kuhn, Linda Conrad Leggett, Charles R. Lloyd, Shirley Singleton Lloyd, Neil Love, Delores J. Loyd, Jerry D. Loyd, Geneva Williston Love, Jeff Mallory, Sarah E. Mallory, Sharon Mallory, Linda Skinner Groat Marex, Laurel Wine Martin, Dixie L. McCauley, Donna McClain, Russell H. McClain, James McLaughlin, Butch McPherson, Debbie Singleton McPherson, Doris Hardesty McPherson, Jennifer McPherson, Louis Miller, Rita Riffle McCauley Miller, Linda McCauley Moore, Robert Moore, Bill Morrison, Dawn Jones Morrison, Michael D. Morrison, Jearld V. Moran, John "Butch" Moran, Lee Moran, Virginia Moran, Tessie M. McGinnis Morton, Stella Cunningham Myers, Ted Myers, Barbara Jeffries Parmer, David Parmer, Paul Peck, Betty Posey, Frank Posey, Betty Mallet Pritt, Donald Pritt, Betty Graff Pulliam, Jimmy Pulliam, Kenneth Pulliam, Treva Singleton Racette, Garrett Ramsey, Nina Brown Ramsey, Louise Bush Ratliff, Thomas Ratliff, Donna Rhoads, Jane Riddle Richter, Roberta Lindsay Riffle, Julia Mackey Robinson, Ann Robison, Jim Robison, Larry Robison, Bill Schindler, Janet Nicholson Schindler, Clark Schneider, Ann Shearer, Virginia Singh, Donna Conrad Singleton, Ruth Mick Singleton, Darrell Skinner, Sally Skinner, JoAnn Bosley Smith, Susan Sours, Linda Singleton Spencer, Judith Cayton Steele, Rosalie Steele, Willard L. Steele, Deanna Brown Stewart, Lowell F. Swisher, Martha Belle Taylor, Harry W. Vankirk, Billy R. Ware, William F. "Bill" Wiant, Charles J. T. Wilson, Betty Pulliam Wine, Irene Stump White, Jerry Wilson, Margaret Wilson Willey, Lefty Wine, Rick Wine, and Wanda McLaughlin Zolla.