Jeff Ruby Culinary Entertainment

Opticare Vision/Express Mobile Transport

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

N. Kentucky High School Students Earn College Credit for Culinary Classes


Via Sullivan University YouTube Channel. 
A growing number of Northern Kentucky high school students are earning college credits through their schools' articulation agreements with the renowned culinary program at Sullivan University's the National Center for Hospitality Studies.

Louisville-based Sullivan - which opened a Northern Kentucky campus in Fort Mitchell earlier this year - currently has articulation agreements with Highlands, Campbell County, Grant County and Williamstown high schools, and is working to forge similar agreements with other Northern Kentucky schools.

Sullivan is also promoting additional articulation agreements in business and information technology to Northern Kentucky high schools as well as its JumpStart program, which allows students to take up to four Sullivan classes for free while they are still in high school. Their only expense is the textbooks required for the classes.

"Sullivan University has great opportunities and programs for high school students to take college classes at only the cost of books," said Katelyn Phillips, Family and Consumer Science Teacher at Campbell County High School. "Our students love taking the culinary arts classes offered at the high school. They get to learn trendy cooking techniques as well as operating a student-ran catering business for our school and community.

"We do so much hands on cooking and learning, the students see how this real world skill is beneficial to them and how they can use these techniques in the future," Phillips said.

Sullivan University Provost Dr. Kenneth Miller said articulation agreements allow parents and students to save money on tuition costs while providing students with a chance to earn college credits while still in high school.

"At Sullivan University, we know that the cost of college weighs heavily on the minds of students and their parents," Dr. Miller said. "With this in mind, we crafted these agreements with the idea of bringing down the cost of college while letting a student finish a degree program faster.

"It's a win-win-win situation," he said. "Students win by getting to start their careers faster. Parents win by saving thousands of dollars off the cost of their children's education.  Sullivan University wins by attracting high quality students who decided to get jump starts on their college educations while still in high school."

Sullivan University's National Center for Hospitality Studies (NCHS) has long set the standard for hospitality education, earning a reputation over the past three decades as one of the top hospitality schools in the nation. The American Culinary Federation accredits Sullivan's Culinary Arts program and has designated it as "exemplary".

Sullivan's culinary articulation agreements covers selected high schools courses and includes students scores on competency-based exams offered through the university. Students can also take tuition-free Sullivan University courses for only the costs of textbooks.

Marlee Barton, the Family and Consumer Sciences teacher at Highlands High School in Fort Thomas, said she knew very little about Sullivan before touring the Lexington and Louisville campuses at the beginning of the school year.

Famous Local Artist Creates Paintings for Fort Thomas Dance Studio

Painting by Beverly Erschell

Paintings Seem to Dance Across the Room at BellaDance Fort Thomas Studio.

After moving to a large space at the Hiland Building on 18 North Fort Thomas Avenue, Julie Keller decided to commission nationally-famous and Fort Thomas resident, Beverly Erschell, to do a small painting for her business, BellaDance Fort Thomas Studio.

Julie knew Bev through family connections. Bev's granddaughter is married to her nephew. "My family is a huge fan of Bev's work, especially my sister, Diane.  I knew the new studio space would be perfect for it."

Campbell County YMCA. This is an advertisement. 

Campbell County Unveils New $7.5 Jail Expansion

Rodney Ballard, Commissioner for Kentucky Department of Corrections, with Campbell County Jailer, Jim Daley. FTM file. 
Campbell County unveiled the expansion of its detention center last night, as elected officials, citizens and interested parties saw firsthand what the $7.53 million dollar expansion project looked like as a finished product.

A new wing of the jail includes 107 jail beds and 36 isolation beds. The former district court offices has been refit into jail space, which includes new administration offices and a public visitation area.

The big change, according to officials, is that the jail expansion has been laid out so that it can accommodate substance abuse disorder programming. Drug abuse, particularly opiates, have been a major factor in the increase in jail population in northern Kentucky.

In all, Jailer Jim Daley said the jail will have a 689 inmate capacity and at least 30 beds will be used to house inmates in that new substance abuse program. The substance abuse disorder program will initially treat females and is something Daley said he believes is needed to break the cycle of incarceration caused by drug addiction.

This is an advertisement. 

"The expansion provides us additional security for the entire facility by providing us with additional bed space," said Daley. "We also hope to turn the newer big dorm into a female work program, which means we will have people in a lockdown facility to do all of our cooking and cleaning which we believe strongly will slow down the amount of drugs coming into this facility because we'll have more control of inmates coming in and out."

The county jail makes up about a third of the entire Campbell County budget at around $9 million dollars in 2015. Daley said he expects that to increase.

"It's going to go up another $3-4 million excluding payment on the new facility. With the increase in beds, I'm going to need another 25 more staff. Our medical, security and food costs are going to go up. The good news is that the new facility will allow me to hold a lot more female state inmates. So at least initially, we're going to be getting paid for the largest portion of these beds and that was our plan when we first started this process ten years ago. We'd like to pay our price down with paying customers so that at some point in time when it's filled up with just county inmates the facility will be mostly, if not completely, paid for."

The Campbell County Detention Center employs about 125 people currently.

Campbell County Judge-Executive, Steve Pendery, said that the increase in jail population has become the biggest drain to the county budget.

Campbell County Judge Executive, Steve Pendery, gives a tour of the new $7.5 million dollar jail expansion at the Campbell County jail. FTM file. 

"We had to expand because we have so many people," said Pendery. "We have nearly 700 inmates in a space that designed for far less than that. When I was first elected, we had 135 beds, so if we were going to have to do something, why not do it in a way that the design lends itself to a solution."

Pendery said that they believe that investing in the substance abuse disorder programming within the confines of the jail will pay off for individuals and the county coffers in the long run.

"We are offering the hope that we'll have fewer customers in the jail in the future. It's not going to happen overnight. Medical professionals will tell you that the brain chemistry in a heroin addict is changed for 18 month to two years. That's what's different about our program. We've arranged for that longer-term program are believe it'll pay off in the future." 

Daley also said the detention center expansion also added more isolation cells that he believes were desperately needed. Jail officials use these cells to separate disorderly inmates who are not complying with the set code of conduct. Previously, he had five such cells at his disposal, but he said in an ideal scenario he should have about 80 cells.

"The new isolation cells are a God-send. Most jailers would tell you they like at least 10% of their cells to be isolation cells," said Daley. "We won't have 80, but we will have 41 which is much better than 5."

Some of the isolation cells are negative-air enabled, which Daley said is useful if an inmate has a communicable disease, to protect staff and other inmates from contamination.

Inmates could begin using the new wing and isolation cells by early December.

9 more pictures below:

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Gifting Back Bazaar Presented by Fort Thomas Central

This Saturday!

The Gifting Back Bazaar presented by Fort Thomas Central. 30 Boutiques/artists/small businesses from northern Kentucky and Ohio. Each of the 30 different exhibitors will donate 10 percent of their sales to a charity of their choice, and has donated a prize for lucky attendees.

December 3rd, 10-6 p.m.
Highlander Event Center 

FREE Parking • $5 Admission • 30 unique prize giveaways • Johnny Delagrange LIVE 3:30-5:30 p.m.

RELATED: What is the Gifting Back Bazaar?

So not only can you cross off items on your holiday shopping list, but you can stay local and support a wide range of charities that each have personal meaning to the sellers, all who happen to be friends and neighbors.

20% of the admission gate will be donated back to NKY Hates Heroin.
RELATED: Connect with the Gifting Back Bazaar via Facebook 

Highlands Student Earns Perfect Score on ACT

Helen Ross. Provided. 
Highlands High School senior Helen Ross earned a perfect score of 36 on the ACT test. Nationally, less than one-tenth of 1% of all students who take the ACT earn a score of 36.

The ACT is required for all high school juniors as part of the annual state assessment in the spring of the school year.  As a junior, Helen earned a score of 35.

Challenging herself academically seems to be the norm for Helen. Throughout her high school years she has elected to take an early bird class which added an extra class period to her school day. Additionally, each year her rigorous schedules have included Advanced Placement (AP) classes, beginning with one her freshman year, three her sophomore year, five her junior year and now six her senior year.

“Helen is a wonderfully gifted student who has achieved at levels unparalleled to any other Highlands student,” said Trinity Walsh, Highlands High School guidance counselor. “Not only does she excel in the classroom but she has earned accolades in academic competitions and is a dedicated mentor and student volunteer at Highlands and community programs. High school is merely a springboard for her future success and I am excited to watch her college achievements.” 
This is an advertisement. 

As for her long-term plans, Helen states that she has not yet selected a college and is currently considering career paths in entomology, mathematics, astrophysics and space science.

St. Andrews Proposed Parking Lot Plans Progress

St. Andrew's Episcopal Church. FTM. 
Saint Andrew’s Episcopal Church wants to build a 23 space parking lot next to their church on South Fort Thomas Avenue and Chalfonte, but some residents are voicing concern for the project.

As is required, the church has applied for a variance which took them before the city’s Board of Adjustments that reviews such applications. Members of the church as well as residents on nearby Chalfonte Place and Nicholas spoke at the initial hearing held October 25. The board also met on November 22, with less discussion taking place then.

At the October meeting, the church claimed that it needs additional parking closer to its building for its aging population. They also stated the project would include the addition of a driveway that would allow for a circular flow of traffic entering on Chalfonte Place and exiting on South Fort Thomas Avenue which would also allow for handicapped parking as well as for hearses to park for funerals.
Barre 3 Ft. Thomas. This is an advertisement. 

At the initial public hearing, Chalfonte residents voiced such concerns as increased traffic on the street that could potentially be safety issues, a loss of needed greenspace within the city and a multitude of parking near the church that, according to them, is not being fully utilized.

The Board of Adjustment expressed a few concerns, but as Jim Beineke, Chairman of the BOA, said, "None of these is insurmountable."

According to the plans the church has sent to the city, the parking lot would use less than half of the green space at the corner of South Fort Thomas Avenue and Saint Nicholas Place. The project would require fill to a depth of up to fifteen feet at its deepest point. The parking lot would also sit atop a paper street that runs next to the church and behind the homes on Nicholas. The right of way belongs to city so they can maintain the utilities that run through the area.

Three Fort Thomas Residents Participate at Standing Rock to Support Native Water Protectors

Rachel Ellison, AJ Seifert, and Gina Shenenfeld on their way to Standing Rock, North Dakota. Courtesy Rachel Ellison. 

Conflict is a result of differing points of view. And sometimes that conflict can lead to violence when communication breaks down.  This seems to be true of the situation at Standing Rock in North Dakota where Native Americans argue that an oil pipeline will desecrate sacred land and pollute water sources while pipeline officials argue that they have the right of way to extend the Dakota Oil Pipeline (DAPL) through the area. The pipeline was originally designed to bypass the reservation to the north but the residents of Bismark, North Dakota argued that the pipeline would negatively affect their water source. This changed prompted the conflict.

Fort Thomas brother and sister, AJ Seifert and Rachel Ellison, and their friend, Gina Shenefeld, made their way to the Native American camp on November 16. This is their story of what they witnessed.

Rachel Ellison first visited South Dakota in the spring of 2015 to work with an organization called Okiciyapi Tipi [and] to participate in volunteer projects on the Cheyenne River Reservation. The experience changed my life. We stayed for 2-weeks in a volunteer house and our main project was to repair houses on the reservation.… I had no idea about the conditions on the reservations. They live in extreme poverty and teenage suicide is among the highest in the nation. It was like visiting a third-world country and it was shocking.

This is an advertisement. 

So when the news broke, Rachel said that I decided to go Standing Rock after realizing that I didn’t have a good reason not to go. I had tossed around the idea of just doing a donation drive and sending them via mail, but I ended up getting so many donations that it made much more sense for me to rent a car, and fit as much in as possible…. I woke up one morning, looked at my husband and said, ‘I’m going to Standing Rock. They need our help.’ Luckily, he is always super supportive and replied with, ‘Alright, what do we need to do to make it happen?’ My husband couldn’t get off work to go, so the next day, I called AJ and asked him to go with me. Gina also went with us.

Monday, November 28, 2016

15 North Hosts Final Two Beers Dinners

15 North is closing on Wednesday, November 30. There are two more beer dinners to send them off. FTM file. 
15 North Pizza at 15 N. Fort Thomas Avenue has announced its closure. After opening in May of 2015, the restaurant announced it's closure earlier this month. 

There are only three days left to send the restaurant off right, including two beer dinners on Tuesday and Wednesday. 
This is an advertisement. 

You can view and buy tickets at the links below:

November 29 Rhinegeist Beer Dinner 

November 30 West Sixth Beer Dinner - Final Day Open

The Midway Cafe Named One of Region's 'Tastiest Diners'

Via Cincinnati Magazine. 
The Midway Cafe in Fort Thomas is getting some attention throughout the region.

In the November issue of Cincinnati Magazine, the cafe was named one of the top five "burger joints" in the region and one of two in northern Kentucky. Six northern Kentucky restaurants were noted by the magazine overall.

RELATED: The Midway Cafe Reboots Under New Owners (June 2015)

The cover story in the magazine, titled, "The 33 Tastiest Diners, Lunch Counters, Food Trucks, and Chili Parlors in Town," was written by seven staff writers.
The cover story of the November edition of Cincinnati Magazine included The Midway Cafe. FTM file. 

As they write, "We set out to uncover (and tuck in at) as many hole-in-the-wall diners as we could. And guess what? When it comes to purveyors of cheap, tasty comfort food, this city does not lack for top-notch dives. Arm yourself with a handful of Prilosec and prepare to take the plunge."

Amanda Boyd Walter writes of The Midway Cafe:

Midway Classic Burger, $10.99.

This is an advertisement. 

Our take: New owners rebooted this Fort Thomas mainstay late last year. The signature burger comes with American cheese, bacon, egg, and housemade ketchup. Both meats come fresh from Ebert’s Meats in Newport, so you’re supporting two locally owned businesses at once.

You’re Drinking: One of 14 rotating taps (mostly craft), or a shot of bourbon from their not-small selection. 1017 S. Fort Thomas Ave., Fort Thomas, (859) 781-7666.

RELATED: The Midway Cafe menu (published Nov. 2015, so menu may have been updated)

"It seems everyone lately has been coming in due to word of mouth, which is the biggest compliment we can get," said co-owner, Erika Kraus.

"It has never been this easy to go into work. I have noticed that our employees seem to love coming into work too and that says so much about how much we enjoy The Midway and the wonderful people who come to see us," said co-owner Staci Edmonds. "Our regulars have become close friends we are seeing more and more new customers. Our kitchen staff works hard in their small area and they take pride into every meal they send up."

Highland Plaza Holiday Hop TOMORROW

The Fort Thomas Highland Plaza will be hosting a Holiday Hop on Tuesday November 29, 2016 from 5:00 until 9:00 p.m.

Cobblestone Cafe will stay open for dinner, until 7:00 p.m.

There will be carolers, a children's book signing, live music, hand massages and more!

Participating vendors will include Diamonds and Dimples Chic Boutique, Anointed Touch Massage, Monera Chic Boutique, Faded Finds and Alterations and Monogramming by Frances.

Get in the holiday spirit!
This is an advertisement. 

Bring a Friend for a Fun night of holiday shopping and fun events.

Also, free signature desserts or drinks will be provided at each location as well as sales and special offers!

Fort Thomas Resident Celebrates Her 100th Birthday

Agnes Snider formerly of Lockwood Place, Fort Thomas, now a resident of Carmel Manor celebrated her 100th Thanksgiving yesterday.  

She has three children, eight grandchildren, 12 great grandchildren and one great great grandchild.  Surrounded by some of the family,  she seemed to enjoy her 100th!
This is an advertisement. 

Friday, November 25, 2016

Shop Small in Fort Thomas! Small Business Saturday Deals.

This is an advertisement.

This is an advertisement. 

Fit Philosophie Black Friday - Small Business Saturday - Cyber Monday Deals

Black Friday, Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday Deals are here!

Check out the latest from Fit Philosophie.

Gilmore Girls meets Fort Thomas- A Stars Hollow Map to our Community

Stars Hollow from Gilmore Girls

Today is the day we’ve all been waiting for!  No, not Black Friday- the return of the Gilmore Girls for a four-part special on Netflix!

But, if you plan it right, after watching the entire series Friday night, you can have your very own Gilmore Girls experience here in Fort Thomas on Saturday which just so happens to be Small Business Saturday!

So, if you’re out on the road, feeling lonely and so cold, stop on in to one of these local Gilmore Girls-esque establishments (lyrics by Carole King)!

While I can’t promise a dreamy coffee-encounter with Luke, a run-in with Dean at Doose’s Market, or any experience close to comparing to Miss Patty, I can promise the money you spend and the good-times you have spending it right here in our community will make you think of how lucky we are to live in our very own Stars Hollow.

Barre 3 Ft. Thomas. This is an advertisement. 

Thursday, November 24, 2016

Lovells Hardwood Flooring - northern Kentucky Hardwood flooring - Refinishing hardwood flooring

The Bengals and Lovells Hardwood work together the serve City Gospel Mission. FTM file. 
Lovell's Hardwood Flooring in Fort Thomas has made it part of their business model to give back to those less fortunate throughout the entire year.

According to co-owner, Bobby Lovell, it's not something they publicize.

"We do a lot of charitable programming throughout the year, but never really do any kind of marketing," he said.

Last year, with the help of some Cincinnati Bengals players, they delivered Christmas, quite literally, to nearly two dozen local families. This year, again with the help of some Bengals, they provided and served Thanksgiving dinner for over 100 people at City Gospel Mission. They also gave winter hats and gloves to everyone in attendance.

RELATED: Fort Thomas Business, Bengals Show Families True Meaning of Christmas 

"Around the holidays everybody deserves to be surrounded by people who care and want to listen to them and just be there. It could make a difference in somebody's life. It could be just what they need to motivate them to take the next step to making a better life for themselves," said Lovell. "Just hearing the stories of their lives and how they landed there just open your eyes to the real issues that surround us & we were happy to be there. It was a great night for everybody involved."

Along with Lovell and his father Al and son, Jaxson, the Carlos Dunlap Foundation provided the manpower. Dunlap, Michael Johnson, Brandon Lafell, Karlos Dansby and Marcus Hardison took time out of their schedules to serve.
Brandon Lafell & son, Robert's son Jaxson and nephew Liam. 
"They were a huge help and really made it an even better night for the folks that we were serving at the shelter. They have a unique platform that allows us to raise awareness in ways that most can't," said Lovell. "It just shows how they are not only great players on the field, but great people off the field. We all get together for one common cause in mind, to lend a helping hand to those in need."

Bluebirds Basketball Preview

Highlands Hopes for Breakthrough Season

PHOTO: Allen Ramsey, Highlands senior Luke LaFrange (33) takes a shot against Covington Catholic last year. LaFrange is one of four returning starters for the Bluebirds.
Head Coach Kevin Listerman has previously said he believes in treating people well and success will come.

He knew it would be a process to change the culture of the Highlands Bluebirds basketball program when he took over as head coach in 2013. In the three years since then, Highlands owns an overall record of 24-49 including a 7-17 mark last year.

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Fort Thomas couple opens their home for "Orphans' Thanksgiving"

(courtesy Best Little Studio Photography)
 By Colin Moore

Most of us will spend Thanksgiving with friends or family but what would you do if you were in a new area, or if you didn’t have any friends or family? Spending holidays alone can be a lonely experience but Fort Thomas couple Jim and Audra Henline may have the answer in their annual Orphans’ Thanksgiving dinner.

Budding Journalist Interviews Well-Known Fort Thomas Musician

The Fort Thomas “Budding Journalist” Column in Sponsored by Fort Thomas Subway 

Nicholas Crawford with his mother, Lori, and Carter New. FTM file.. 
Nicholas Crawford, 10, is this month’s “Budding Journalist” columnist.

He is a fifth grader at Johnson Elementary School and enjoys magic, basketball and baseball.  He is a junior leader black belt in taekwondo and is currently testing for his second-degree black belt in December.

He also wants to learn how to play the guitar, so Nicholas interviewed recent Highlands graduate, Carter New, who recently tried to make music his career.

Interview by Nicholas Crawford

Nicholas Crawford: What was your inspiration when you first began to play music?

Carter New: I was born into a family where there was a lot of athletic talent, but not much talent when it came to music, but my uncle could play and sing a bit and when I was really young, I used to enjoy that. When I was really little, I could play tunes on the keyboard, by ear.

I would always ask my teachers in school to teach us how to make my own music. I would write songs myself before I knew how to play an instrument. I loved it from young age because if you really pay attention to music, you can hear it, feel it, see it.

NC: What kind of music do you like to listen to?

CN: I like country music. A lot of the stuff I write kind of mimics the stuff I listen to or write, but ever since I’ve performed live, I try and play as many different genres as possible because I want to make everyone happy. Some people out there might not like country music. I can get into everything except for hardcore rapping, but if there is a melody or chord progression, I can appreciate the talent.

I sang in the choir at Highlands and NKU, so I began to even enjoy classical music. That’s where music originated; they are the godfathers of music in general.

One on One: Governor Matt Bevin Joins Fort Thomas Matters

Download this episode (right click and save)
Gov. Matt Bevin. 
Gov. Matt Bevin was in northern Kentucky to celebrate the groundbreaking of the Duveneck Square Project.

The project is a four-story, mixed use urban development project located along Washington St. between 7th and 8th Street, bringing a mix of residents and commercial tenants to Covington's Central Business District.

Listen below or at the Fort Thomas Matters podcast archive here:

Who Was Highlands' David Cecil?

Hank Pogue addresses the crowd at the unveiling of the two new frames dedicated to David Cecil at Highlands High School. FTM file. 

By John Deering

David Cecil was an 11th grade student; and among other activities, he was a football player at Highlands in 1951. The day after a game, he died because of an injury to his head the evening before. It was and still is a tragedy to all who knew him.  He was a fine young man with a grand future before him.  He was indeed a person whom it was a pleasure to know and to teach.  To honor David, many of us  -- his  friends,  classmates, teachers, and  coaches--  decided  to name our relatively new stadium in  his honor. However, as time passes,  younger   people come along and do not know  why such honors have been given. Then how should we bring the newer generations up to date on such things?

On Saturday, November 12th, many of us gathered at Highlands to be a part of a renewal to this honor.  David’s letter sweater had been saved all these years; so some friends of David got the idea of framing this sweater and other reminders of who he had been and mount it permanently in Highlands.  Hank Pogue conducted the gathering with dignity and graciousness.  If David had lived, he would have become Hank’s uncle.
This is an advertisement. 
The Cecil family has been a part of Fort Thomas for many years.  In addition to Hank Pogue and Tom Cecil,  others  who  have assisted in  this endeavor are Debbie Cecil Andrews and Stanley Cecil, surviving siblings of David; Robin Cecil Slater, Carolyn Cecil Bardo, Lucy Cecil, Terri Pogue Hill, Cathy Pogue Burt, all of whom  would have been  nieces  of David;  Morris Cecil, a  nephew. Also having assisted are Principal Brian Robinson, Athletic Director Matt Haskamp, Athletic Secretary Kathy Eaton, and retired Director Dale Mueller. Gerald Cecil, whom we all highly respected, was on our school board for more than twenty years.
Tom Cecil admires the restored plaque, which hangs at Highlands' football stadium. FTM file. 

It has been almost seventy years  since this death occurred.  However, by holding this assembly, many memories have returned to all of us who were a part of Highlands at that time. We mourned our loss.  Coach “Judge” Ewell Waddell grieved about it to the extent he could hardly get it off his mind. The injury certainly was not his fault or anyone else’s, but Mr. Waddell was not only a coach, but one of the finest history teachers and one of the finest gentlemen any of us has ever known. He was a dedicated person.  All of us helped him through this terrible experience. Later he became our superintendent.  David would have graduated in 1953. Yes, many of his classmates attended this ceremony. I believe I am the only one of his teachers still living. *

We had to know how this had happened. Bernie Sadosky, teacher and coach, sent the helmet away to the manufacturer to be examined; it was one of the hard-shelled kinds they still use. It eventually got back to us with a report that said it had not failed. Then we discerned it must have been a cleat that had gotten through to David’s head just below the helmet line. Eventually we had a plaque displayed adjacent to a trophy case and another one on the front of   the stands. That was sixty-five years ago.

Part of the crowd on hand. FTM file. 
Hank Pogue, a part of the Cecil family, conducted our meeting and said, “I’d like to give you some background how this all came about. Somehow I had in my possession Uncle David’s letter sweater that I  have  always cherished. Also I was proud to play football at Highlands   in the David Cecil Memorial Stadium. I also wanted my two sons, who also played football at Highlands, to appreciate the family history of David and how the stadium became named for him.” Traditions are firmly fixed in schools, but they aren’t always appreciated by later generations.  Highlands has so honored  some  with wonderful memories.

Of course, no one intentionally ignores such history of a school; however we of the older generations do   sometimes forget to explain to present and future generations why such people have been so honored.  Evidently the question has come about recently, “Who was David Cecil?” Of course, many of us know full well; but through the years, as I have said, we had not explained it to the current generation.  Most likely there might  have been thoughts of changing the name of the stadium to honor  a more recent person. Well, we must not do that – as well-meaning as those intentions might be.  In fact, shortly before the beautiful even fantastic improvements to our buildings had begun, I had a phone call asking why the name Bridges had been placed on our new Gymnasium [1955] and was it honorably given or a paid-for naming. [1955]  I could hardly believe the question, but   I remembered even though we knew  who  Mr. Bridges had been to us of the  Fort Thomas Schools, that was years and years ago.  I politely but firmly explained to my caller that it was an honorary naming and why.  Although we have had a steady line of fine superintendents, Mr. Bridges was the one who put our schools on the road to excellence and recognition throughout the state and the region.
David Cecil's letter sweater had been in the Pogue and Cecil families for years. If you look closely, you can see Hank Pogue and Debbie (Cecil) Andrews in the reflection. FTM file. 

There have been two others whom I have known of whose names have been removed.  For example, there was the Grace Kellogg Memorial Room. Mrs. Kellogg died in an accident when the tie –rod of her car broke loose and she hit a large pole somewhere in Cincinnati.  [1949].  Seatbelts  were not  in our cars then, of course. Another was Lydia Berry.

It was 1954 when I had the before- school “hall duty.”  One morning I noticed a photograph high on the wall near the entrance of our original building. [1914] There was a framed portrait  of a rather distinguished – looking  woman whom I had never met.  She was deceased well before   my time at Highlands; when I inquired who she had been – Lydia Berry. Someone told me she had been a former teacher at Highlands. “Okay, so why is her picture still hanging there?”  I thought. Maybe there should be a photograph of someone whom all of us knew.  I naively suggested to Jim Apple, the editor of the Hilltopper, to write a short feature about replacing that photograph with one of the current Superintendent, Russell E. Bridges. Jim wrote and published it.  That morning he innocently  went to math class, and Miss Williametta Baker took off on him politely but  firmly!  She explained whose picture we were suggesting to be   taken off that wall -- one of the finest teachers she had ever known at Highlands or anywhere else!  Both of us got the message: predecessors continue to count! The teachers’ lounge had also   been named for her.  However, that was where the principal’s office is now.  That portrait was still on that wall when the building burned in 1962. It was destroyed.  Jim and I had learned an important lesson, though! Well, we were both too young to be nostalgic -- yet. Older and wiser, we are now.

Honoring someone of a state, the nation, and even a school must not be taken lightly. However, once it has been presented, it must remain permanent and never hastily eliminated. We know now that the name  of our stadium is permanently fixed:  David Cecil Memorial Stadium. Now you know positively who David Cecil was and is in the memories of us who knew him.

*The death of student and that inevitable vacant seat in the classroom the next day is one of the most traumatic experiences teachers   can expect to have during their careers. Fortunately it did not happen often in my career, but, yes, it did happen.  It is always a very sad time.  Parenthetically my opinion of handling this is best left to the students’ teachers who in most cases know both the lost and the other students.

An article in the “Cincinnati Times Star,” dated November 13, 1951 described Cecil’s death. 
Gridiron Injury Fatal to David Cecil, 16

Junior footballer David Cecil died Monday, November 12th of an injury suffered Friday night in the Highlands-Campbell County grid game at Highlands Stadium, Fort Thomas. David was injured in a pileup when Campbell County executed a play through the right side of the Highland’s line in the third quarter of the contest. Described as a “model student” by Morris Cierley, Principal, David was a bass singer in the school chorus and was also slated to pitch on the school’s baseball team. David resided on Miami Parkway with his father, Gerald Q. Cecil, and mother, Mildred Cecil. In addition to his parents, he leaves two sisters, Mrs. Susan Cecil Pogue and Deborah Ann Cecil, of Fort Thomas three brothers, Gerald Q. Cecil Jr. and Morris Cecil, of Fort Thomas, Lt. Stanley Cecil, USN, stationed at San Diego, California, and his maternal grandmother, Mrs. Alfred Morris.