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WYSO, the Dayton Metro Library and local social service agency, Rebuilding Together Dayton, have come together for a very special project. We’ve gathered the memories and wise words of Dayton’s elders for Senior Voices, a new series that is airing throughout 2018.Along with Dayton Metro Library staff, we trained nearly three dozen area residents to use digital recording equipment to interview local elders. Interviews took place at branch libraries, at selected Lobby Stop locations (Lobby Stop is a sort of book mobile for seniors), community centers, and in the homes of seniors who participated in the Rebuilding Together Dayton Fixit Kit program.We held three trainings at the DML Northwest branch this summer, and shortly after the new main branch opened in August, the volunteers began gathering stories. The full interviews will be accessible for generations to come at the Dayton Metro Library. At WYSO, Community Voices producers have been editing the interviews for broadcast. We present them to you in honor of the life experiences and wisdom of Dayton elders.This series is made possible through the generous support of the Del Mar Healthcare Fund of the Dayton Foundation.Jocelyn Robinson coordinated this series for WYSO. Janine Kinnison is the Project Liaison for Dayton Metro Library.Editors include: Dave Barber, William Brown, Tess Cortes, Patti Gehred, Javis Heberling, Kateri Kosta, Zebedee Reichert, Jason Reynolds, David Seitz, Alan Staiger, Chris Welter. Interviewers include: Dana Kragick, Tess Cortes, Anna Omulo, Doug Bowers, Hadley Drodge, M. Alice Callier, Barbra Gerla, Jason Coatney Schuler, Linda Pitzer, Carol Jackson, Audrey Ingram, Susan Brenner, Nancy Messer, Christian Davell, Ken Standifer, Liz Anderson, Cynthia Wallace-King, Karen Maner, David Murphy Sr., Cynthia Rush, Alan Stagier, Debra Root, Pamela Waltrip, Jennifer Hicks, Brandon Ulman, Karah Power    

Senior Voices: Linda Harris

Linda Harris
Senior Voices
Linda Harris

Today on Senior Voices, we hear from Linda Harris, a native of Miamisburg, who was born at home in 1942. She recalled her teenage years at Miamisburg High School with Dayton Metro Library volunteer interviewer, Liz Anderson.


Linda Harris: We used to go over to the Germantown skating rink every weekend and do the boogie bounce. And we would fly around that, and we had so much fun there, and most of the kids would go there every weekend after the ball games on Friday night, then it was skating on Saturday night. And we had a wonderful time there, and I believe that’s still there, they’re still going there, kids are, you know, so… We used to have the parades like they have now, the homecoming like they have now.

Back then, we used to ride on the back of the convertible and our fathers would be over on the other side, so the convertible would drive you past the crown and around half way and then you would get out and meet your dad, and he would walk you across the field.

My one problem was, I was on the court, my sister was the queen the year before, bless her heart, but anyway, I was almost ready to go and the zipper on my dress broke. I was sewed into my formal gown, well it wasn’t a gown it was just a short length, it wasn’t floor length or anything, so I had to very carefully, breathe very carefully, for fear that my dress would pop open and I would be the queen!

And that same night, my sister was supposed to crown the next queen, the queen that night. Leave it to her, she left the robe at home and that’s what she was supposed to put that and the crown, so my uncle, my dad was already with me, so my mom and my uncle flew home, didn’t have any keys when they got there, but they opened the window on the porch and they had venetian blinds, not like they are now, but those wide, metal.

They crawled through the venetian blinds and got what they needed, and they crawled back out through the venetian blinds instead of opening the door, so that was a kicker that night.

This interview was edited by Community Voices producer and Senior Voices project coordinator Jocelyn Robinson. Senior Voices is a collaboration between the Dayton Metro Library, Rebuilding Together Dayton, and WYSO. This series is made possible through the generous support of the Del Mar Healthcare Fund of the Dayton Foundation.