Edit: The following article, written by Irene Hodgson `56, in 2007 gives, along with other memories, an explanation of the closing of the Story County Home.
by Irene Hodgson `56
"My days at Milford School began in 1954. My parents moved from Eldora to Nevada in January of 1953. When I left Eldora, I was in chorus, and in a class play, and a basketball cheerleader, and was really enjoying my first year of high school. It was really hard to change schools at this point in my life.
"I went to Nevada High School for one semester, and then my parents found a house in the country, and informed me that I had to change schools again. I couldn't believe that they were going to make me go to a little country school. My life couldn't have been worse. I was really depressed and made up my mind that I wasn't going to like Milford no matter what it was like.
"My first day at Milford High School started September, and I had a real attitude. However, I found a lot of friendly faces, and the kids in my class (a big class of eleven) wanted to know all about me. The teachers were very helpful, and tried to make the new kid feel at home. I tried really hard not to like it, but I met some nice people and decided that maybe I could tolerate going to a country school.
"Lois Sandell was one of my favorite teachers. We nicknamed her Mama Sandell, because she always had a bit of advice for each one of us, and tried very hard to teach the girls to behave as young ladies, and the boys to be gentlemen. She really had her job cut out for her. Believe it or not, she groomed me so well that I received the Homemaker of Tomorrow award. I know that Jurine Borton, who had been in 4H since babyhood, couldn't believe it any more than I could, but regardless the award was mine. I think God was trying to tell me that I could achieve whatever I wanted no matter where I went to school, and it was time to stop sulking. So I did.
"For a small school, Milford offered us all many of the opportunities that were available in much larger schools. Mrs Schindler, the music teacher, pushed us all to reach our greatest potential. In those days we had music contests, and I sang solo, and got a one at the state contest, but only because of the hours that Mrs Schindler spent practicing with us all.
"Mrs Voigt was the band teacher, and thought we all had to potential to play an instrument. However, that was not one of my talents, so when she started a marching band, she decided that I could be the majorette. We had the opportunity to march in the Drake Relay parade and at Veishea. We all thought we were pretty good, and I still think we were. I really learned to blow that whistle and do my struts.
"I also tried my hand at basketball, with Ev Cochran as our fearless coach. He tried really hard to make a basketball player out of me, but unfortunately both of us realized that my coordination and talent wasn't what was needed to play basketball. I finally asked him if it wouldn't be a good idea if I was a cheerleader instead of a basketball player, and he readily agreed. Actually it was a good decision for both of us, and I could out yell everyone in the crowd, and eventually goaded them into doing the same. When we became county champions, we all were hoarse by the end of the game, and I felt as much a team member as the players.
"Shirley Meyer Hovland became my best friend in school, and we did everything together, except play basketball, but I cheered her on to be the best. The two of us tutored Ron Otto throughout his junior year to keep him eligible for basketball. We convinced him he wasn't really dumb, he just didn't know how to study, so we felt it was our job to teach him. We did get him to pass the tests needed to keep him eligible to play basketball. Our senior year, my good friend moved to Roland, and we were basketball rivals, but still remained friends. Jurine Borton and Hazel Horness then helped me tutor Ron, and we were all able to graduate together.
"Government was my favorite class. It was taught by our Superintendent, Keith Hopkins. I hated History, and wasn't looking forward to Government, but