October 23, 1987
by Melissa Thornley
Maine South's homecoming queen -- a review of years gone by
The view from under the crown: Jeanne Paige, '68
"When you're picked out of a large group of kids, you feel responsible, like you owe something back. It was important to be yourself and remain humble."
This was Jeanne Paige's philosophy on being a homecoming queen: to appreciate the honor and try to give something in return. Her ideals were high and her intentions good, almost altruistic. During her years at Maine South, Jeanne not only was the prom queen of her junior class, but also served as a helper in the attendance office and as a hall monitor. Actively involved in Student Council, Jeanne was elected to represent Maine South on a trip to Colorado and acted as Vice President during her senior year.
One of Jeanne's clearest memories of high school, however, was her rebellion against the school dress code. At that time girls were not allowed to wear culottes to school. So, leading a revolt against school policy, Jeanne wore culottes and was subsequently sent to the dean's office, where she waited for the arrival of her mother, who brought a more suitable skirt for her to wear.
Now before you start jumping to conclusions, let's first put ourselves in the correct frame of reference.
It's 1968, and the American troops are fighting in Vietnam. The United States is in a state of chaos trying to deal with the antiwar movement, flower children, and a heavy drug influence. Park Ridge, an extremely conservative suburb, is just beginning to feel the affects of the rebellious tide coming in.
Most importantly, Jeanne's father had just passed away the year before. This had a great affect upon Jeanne's reaction to her homecoming queen nomination
"I kept thinking I didn't deserve it, almost guilty. I was really hurting deeply inside. I didn't realize it at the time, but I guess I really needed the attention."
Her friends were very supportive of her throughout homecoming, and there existed virtually no negative feelings of jealousy from her court. They were genuinely happy for her and even sent her a telegram with the message: "Congratulations to a queen inside and out."
The encouragement from her friends helped pull Jeanne through some tough times and made her high school years a rewarding experience, and up until a few years ago, Jeanne kept in touch with them. However, she says that now it's very difficult because all of her friends are at a very hectic point in their lives; their children are at that age when they spend most of their time driving them around to soccer practice and baseball practice.
Currently living in Oconomowoc, Wisconsin, Jeanne loves how her life as turned out, and believes that the excellent education and basis for morals she received at Maine South helped her build a wonderful life for herself and her family. Firmly believing in a strong family unit, Jeanne enjoys every minute she spends caring for her husband and her three children: Michael, Amy, and P.J.
As for the teenagers of today, Jeanne thinks that we, as people, are very similar to the teenagers of her class in 1968. We still yearn for acceptance and dread the thought of rejection from our peers. Now, however, exist more potential hazards for teens. With drugs, peer pressure, and the hard drive to succeed more prominent and commonplace, teenagers live in a more stressful time and the need for communication is greater than ever.
"I love teenagers. It's a time when the kids need to be communicated with. They've got a lot to say."
As Jeanne reminisced about the highs and lows of her high school years, a warm feeling of relief overcame me, for I had just lived through her adolescence seeing it through her eyes, the eyes of an adult looking back. Though I've known it all along, it took the specifics of Jeanne's memories for me to fully understand that twenty years ago, our parents' generation lived through the exact same problems we are facing today. They survived. So can we.
April Fischer, '79
by Samantha Ann Malten
Maine South's new Freedom Shrine was presented to Dr. Cachur by Mrs. Pat Schreiber, sponsor for the senior class of 1987, at a dedication ceremony Thursday, September 17th before homeroom. The Freedom Shrine is a wall in the library covered with plaques which reporduce many documents in our nation's history.
The idea of a Freedom Shrine came to South by way of Mr. Adamo, assistant principal of students, who saw it at another high school. After gaining support from Dr. Cachur, who provided the necessary information to carry out the project, Mr. Adamo brought the idea to the senior class of '87 and the social sciences department to split the cost of the project.
Together with Mr. Mastrolonardo of the art department and Mr. Kohler of the social sciences department, Mr. Adamo designed the layout for the Freedom Shrine. "It is a permanent structure and will be here as long as we're here." There are still some finishing touches to be added, such as a graphic to aid in finding certain documents, designed by Mr. Benthal of the industrial education department.
During the presentation of the Freedom Shrine, State Representative Penny Pullen delivered a short speech entitled "Documents of Freedom." In her speech she noted the Freedom Shrine as an appropriate dedication to the 200th anniversary of the Constitution and pointed out "a common thread in these documents showing how the people who created and sustained our nation recognize there are ideals worth fighting for...and that America is built, not on schemes, but on dreams and hopes." In ending her speech, Pullen urged, "Please do celebrate our Constitution. It's great."
The Freedom Shrine has also taken on a practical use in the school curriculum. It has already been used by some teachers for class assignments.
Mr. Adamo stated that the Freedom Shrine "gives us a sense of nationalism, pride and patriotism." Of course, with Maine South's diverse student body, there are plenty of over views. Some are suggestive like Paul Knueppel's, '89, "I think it's neat, but it could use a new name." Some are positive like junior Larry Wojciechowski's, "It's a good premise to get people interested in history." Some are negative like junior Ed Wiederer's, It's boring. They made too big a deal out of it." Others are uninformed like freshman Paul Mulvaney's "What's a Shrine?" Still others don't even care, yet most were passive. As junior Matt Golliet said, "It sounds fine to me."