This marks the 35th anniversary of my High School graduation. Go North-town Hornets! While I was hoping to make it to our 35th Reunion, it's just not going to happen. So, I decided to take a little journey down memory lane and look at the way things were all those many, many years ago.
The following events took place in 1981:
- 52 American hostages were released from Iran after 444 days in captivity.
- Ronald Reagan became President of the United States.
- The air traffic controllers went on strike, and were ultimately fired by President Reagan.
- The US Space Shuttle Columbia had its first flight.
- Researchers found the wreck of the Titanic in the North Atlantic.
- Pope John Paul II was shot on May 13.
- Egyptian President Anwar Sadat was assassinated.
In sports our Kansas City Chiefs, under Coach Marv Levy, finished 3rd in the AFC West with a record of 8-8. The Kansas City Royals, under Manager Jim Frey, finished 4th in the AL West with a record of 50-53. 1981 was not a great year for Kansas City sports.
On TV, the top 5 shows that year were: Dallas, 60 Minutes, The Jefferson's, Three's Company, and Alice.
The top 5 songs on the radio that year were: Bette Davis Eyes (Kim Carnes), Endless Love (Diana Ross and Lionel Richie), Lady (Kenny Rogers), Starting Over (John Lennon), and Jessie's Girl (Rick Springfield).
The top 5 movies of 1981 were: Raiders of the Lost Ark, Mad Max 2, Stripes, The Evil Dead, and For Your Eyes Only.
It's kind of strange to look back on how things were 35 years ago. It's even stranger to look back on how you were 35 years ago! A few months ago I had the pleasure of talking with Tracy Crawford, one of my longtime friends, and revisiting parts of our childhood. We talked about playing football on the vacant lot at the corner of 23rd and Iron. We talked about playing catch and kicking field goals at the big field at the bottle of the road going into Sunny Hills. We talked about our friends and teachers from Norclay Elementary School, Northgate Junior High, and North Kansas City High School. It was great to catch up with Tracy and to reminisce the good ole days!
In our conversation Tracy told me about the class of 1981's reunion and then he shared with me how many of our classmates wondered what had happened to me. I have to admit that I was just a little shocked as I always felt like one of the "shadow people" and never thought that I had much of an impact on anyone in my class, let alone our school.
That brings me back to the person that I was in 1981. I wish that I could tell you that I was a model Christian in my High School days. I wish that I could tell you that I was a voice for the underdog. I wish that I could tell you that I lived then by the values and morals that I so greatly value today. The reality is that I wasn't. Far too often I was embarrassed by my faith and I simply wanted to fit in. I was afraid to tell my friends about my faith and about the God who loved me so much that He sent His only Son so that I could have eternal life in His presence.
I have learned that some of my High School friends have passed away far too early in their lives, a few while we were still in High School. I can only pray that someone took the time to share Christ with them. To those friends that I went to High School with, to the NKC Hornet's Class of 1981, please forgive me for being so concerned about what you thought about me that I never shared with you about the greatest gift that you could ever receive.
I am so glad that God didn't leave me as the person that I was in 1981. I am so glad that God continued to discipline and mold me into His image. I can proudly say that I am not the person that I once was, but I know that I still have a long way to go.
If you are reading this and don't know Jesus Christ as your Savior and Lord, I would be honored to talk with you. You can find me on Facebook, please pm me. If you enjoyed this blog please click "like". If you feel led, please click "share". As always, please let me know what you think.