Friday, July 24th: Frozen
An American veteran of World War II and a German Jew whom he helped to rescue in Nazi-occupied Holland shared the stage at Granville Middle School (also in New Albany & Johnstown) yesterday to talk about their experiences and to preach the importance of tolerance. The presentation also gave students a chance to hear stories firsthand— an opportunity that is quickly fading away.
Don Jakeway, a U.S. paratrooper during the war, and Bert Jakobs, whose family had fled to Holland to avoid
persecution in Germany, only to be forced into hiding to avoid being sent to a concentration camp after the occupation, told of the Jakobs family’s ordeal and its liberation by American soldiers from Jakeway’s regiment in 1944.
Jakobs, 78, shared a room about the size of a two-car garage with four other people for more than two years while the German army controlled the country. His family ate the same meals every day: a bowl of oatmeal in the morning and potatoes and onions for lunch and dinner. They had to clean themselves with a washcloth from a basin, never brushing their teeth or changing their clothes during their confinement. But the emotional damage from missing much of his childhood was worse than the hardships in their hideout, he said. “I got married in 1956, but it wasn’t until the mid-1980s that I told my three children or wife about hiding,” Jakobs told the students. “I didn’t want to talk about it. It was like a prison sentence.”
Now living in Palm Desert, Calif., Jakobs said he would rather live in the present than the past, but as he got older, he realized the importance of sharing his story. That’s why he agreed to come to central Ohio after he was contacted a few weeks ago by Mark Easton, a New Albany resident who had met Jakeway through volunteer work with veterans.
Originally, Easton had wanted to bring together the two — who had never met — to celebrate Jakeway’s 89th birthday in January, but Jakobs said the two should use the opportunity to talk to schoolchildren about the importance of treating people as equals. “We need to create a world where people are tolerant and accept people for who they are,” Jakobs said. “To me, that’s more important than living for 25 months hiding in a room.” The two spoke in several area
schools, wrapping up with Granville yesterday before Jakobs flew home in the afternoon.
Jakeway, a Johnstown resident, knew of Jakobs because he had corresponded with Jakobs’ sister, Edith Jakobs, who was living in Israel. Jakeway was working on a book about his experiences as a paratrooper in the 508th Parachute Infantry Regiment of the 82nd Airborne Division during the war. The two wrote regularly from 1986 until she died last year, he said.
Meeting her brother at Port Columbus on Wednesday was an emotional moment, Jakeway said. Listening to Jakobs speak to school groups taught him a side of the war that he had not experienced as a soldier. “I never got a chance to meet this family,” Jakeway told students yesterday. “I never remembered the homes, the houses, because we were looking for people behind them, or in the trees or bushes. There was a lot of fighting going on.” He echoed Jakobs’ call for students to be tolerant of those unlike themselves, reminding them that the Jakobs family had never harmed the Nazis who persecuted them.
Eighth-grader Dayton Steffeny, 14, said he was amazed by Jakobs’ recovery from his ordeal, and he said he is grateful that the world has changed since the Holocaust. “I think people can be cruel at times, but I think the world has gotten a lot
better,” he said.
Friday August 15th: Back to the Future
Get in back-to-school mode by going back in time with Marty McFly. This 80’s classic will entertain the entire family.
Festivities will begin at 7:30 with music and free popcorn. Other concessions items will be for sale in the pavilion.
New Albany Parks and Recreation and Eagles Pizza are proud to announce the dates for the 2nd annual Summer Movie Series. Grab your blankets, lawn chairs and picnic baskets, then sit back and enjoy the show. The screen will go up at dusk so come early to get your spot on the lawn. Alcohol, pets and glass containers are strictly prohibited. Admission is free, though there will be concessions items for sale in the pavilion.
I’m surprised Dirk Stevens hasn’t already posted this picture he shot, but it is so great a story I wanted to share. Dennis Keesee has brought back movie night in New Albany with the first one this coming Friday night at the Wexner Park pavilion. This beautiful signage was done by Sean Alley owner of ProSign on the side of Eagles Pizza, at the exact location where movies were actualy shown, I believe in the early 20th century and not sure how long, maybe into the 1930’s, at least according to the stories my Dad, Clark Cubbage, told. I’m guessing the powers to be would no longer let Rt. 62 be closed down to show movies! But big kudos to these New Albany grads, Dennis, Dirk and Sean, for keeping “old” New Albany alive! I love the sentiment and I love this beautiful signage. The photo in the sign looks to be High Street in New Albany, maybe taken in the late ‘teens or 1920’s? You can see the old Masonic Temple on the left, a building that still stands. Guess it will be up most of the summer, if you have a chance to drive by and see it. Even better, you can all patronize these three NAHS grads-they are all independent business owners in the community!
Friday June 13th: The Incredibles Follow Mr. Incredible and his superhero family through this crime-fighting classic. Kids are encouraged to dress up as their favorite superhero to get in the spirit. The best dressed superheroes will receive a special prize. Festivities will begin at 7:30 with music and free popcorn. Other concessions items will be for sale in the pavilion.
My story begins before I even have memories of New Albany. I would guess that my mother took me to the pool, on 605, when I was a toddler. I know that she took me to the Y at about six months of age and did one of those “sink or swim” things, tossing me in, lovingly!
I can remember, spending every waking second, of every summer, at the pool from probably 4th grade until I was 18 or so. I remember days where my mother was coating my nose with Desitin to protect it from the sun, to sitting down over the hill smoking with the girls from Licking Heights. That’s when I was 12.
To this day, I hear songs on the radio that take me back to that pool, I can smell the chlorine, see the sun reflecting off the water and I’m right back there again. There is no other smell, of any other pool, that I have smelled, EVER, that smelled like the pool in (old) New Albany. It was the BEST.
Hanging out with my friends day after day, perfecting our tans, keeping the concession stand in business buying pretzel rods (with a line of mustard) for $.05, Boston Baked Beans for $.25 and the best snack was the frozen Snickers bar, I think that was $.50
Since my mom still had to work at the elementary for a couple weeks after school was out, I was tasked with going in with her to help with the handbooks. That entailed running the Xerox machine, collating and stapling together those handbooks that were passed out at the beginning of the next school year. Doing this was how I earned my pool ticket every year. Well worth it, in my opinion.
My day started out, after waking up, spending a couple hours on the phone each morning with Staci Hatfield. We would talk while watching TV. When I got off the phone with her, I would call Sheri and make sure she was able to go to the pool. I did what chores I was supposed to do and then when my mom would have her lunch break, she would run home, pick me up and drop me off at the pool. It opened at 11 and closed at 9 during the week, maybe, I’m not 100% sure I’m remembering that right. Anyway, either my mom would take Sheri and I, or her mom would take us once she got home from her morning errands. Sheri Miller, Amy Hathaway and I lived at the pool, it seemed. On days when it would rain, there was nothing else to do as we just loved that pool so much. There was a time or two when Sheri and I would ride our bikes, all the way from Sleepy Hollow, down 62, right on 161 and then right onto 605, meeting Amy, Staci and just about everyone else there. Everyone went to the pool. On days we had softball games, we were allowed to go to the pool but could only stay until 2. On days we just had practice, coaches asked us to get out of the pool by 3. I almost always stretched it to 4 though because my mom would pick me up about 4 when she got off work. Once she was done for the summer, I would always beg to stay much later. I didn’t care if I missed dinner. The pool was that important.
I’ll never ever forget that place. Playing tag, with the ladders for bases, going down the slide, diving off the low board, being brave enough to go off the high dive. Standing on my tippy toes in the 6 foot, thinking I was so cool. Trying to swim from the shallow end to the deep end, all in one breath. When the lifeguards would blow the whistle for break, it was the thing to do to swim past all the other ladders and go under the rope and get out in the 2 foot, just to spend more time in the water.
The older I got, things stayed exactly as they were. Which is weird because usually things change, the older you get. The fun though, stayed the same. Even when the lifeguards changed, they added a playground, prices went up at the concession stand. It didn’t matter, it was the pool. It was the pool in New Albany. New Albany was the best place to grow up. It had the best people, the best times, the best friends. It was home.
For as long as I live, I will always remember how awesome it was to grow up in New Albany. To go to the pool. To live on Sleepy Hollow Drive. To have best friends like Sheri Miller and Amy Hathaway.
The Eagles Pizza Book Series 2nd book signing /author event of the season welcomes David Cuccia on Sunday, December 15th from 5-8 pm.
David’s the author-illustrator of There’s A Crazy Dog Under the Palace! Come out for some great pizza, get your signed copy and meet the author!
Join us on December 2, from 6-9 PM at Eagles Pizza for our first book signing and visit with authors Richard Baumgartner and Dennis Keesee. Rick has written and edited numerous books on the Civil War and other subjects. He will be signing assorted titles including Buckeye Blood-Ohio at Gettysburg during this 150th anniversary of the famed battle. Eagle Pizza owner and author Dennis Keesee will have copies of Too Young To Die – boy Soldiers of the Union Army as well. Within are stories of boys aged 5-17 who went away with the innocence of youth and soon were faced with the realities of war.
A big thank you goes out to all the teams that participated in this years New Albany Invitational!
We had over 60 teams participate between B & C divisions – competing in 23 events per division.
A big thanks to the over 130 volunteers, coaches, and district staff for helping us pull off this event
successfully. We’re planning our 3rd annual Invitational for Feb. 2014… stay tuned!
February 24, 2013 By: avatke
Photo By: Dirk Stevens
This is one of Ben’s first concerts back in the day. Wow, how time flies. Now Kohl and Brian are in their second year of college and Ben is off to Austin, Texas next week for South by Southwest. They were a great band and are great young men.