In 1960s & 1970s, 4-William (Billy) King 1954-, POSTS on April 8, 2010 at 7:48 am

(Editor’s note: Not many men could pull off those shorts, but Uncle Billy/Bill appears to be doing it in style. Uncle Billy, where on earth are you here? Who’s the damsel by your side?

Aunt Julie/Julie, Uncle Billy’s reigning queen, has informed me that his favorite Grandma/Momma/Bee meal “was (and still is!) her strawberry pie, ham, sweet potato casserole, butter beans and rice.” )

  1. Well, it may not look like it, but this was a really big deal. It was for a special presentation for the Junior-Senior Prom at NBHS when I was a sophomore, in May 1970, or 40 years ago! (so I was 16 then) Jimmy Smith, the wizard of NBHS proms, had built a balcony and staircase and decorated it in a medieval Italian theme. Obviously, I was Romeo, and the girl playing the part of Juliet was a class mate of mine named Laura. I’m still not sure why I agreed to wear that outfit, but Mom made the high-visibility neon orange and lime-green suit and bought the pure white tights. I also had some hand-made felt boots with big buckles. It was really, really weird, but everyone seemed to enjoy it (and probably laughed a lot!) I learned a lot about humility that night, so I guess it was good for me!

  2. Billy said it, but look closely at the outfit – Grandma sewed this piecing the orange and green fabric into the close fitting jacket. She could always do whatever you needed to have done.
    Billy also neglected to say that the ones chosen to do this were being recognized for academic excellence – the “Pages”.
    Jimmie Smith always made our prom’s incredible experiences. By dating an “older man”, I got to attend prom all my four years at NBHS and everyone was an “event”!

  3. Oh my goodness, let me just say that by 1999 the New Bern High School prom had totally devolved NOTHING compared to this! I can’t even remember if my prom had a theme. Who was Jimmy Smith? Was he the principal?

    And Uncle Billy, Aunt Boyd, Daddy and Claire: GO BEARS!

  4. I doubt there is a picture of it, but I also was a page my sophomore year (1962). At that time the juniors and seniors had a catered meal that the pages were “priviliged” to serve. GM also made my costume. I can’t remember what my costume was, but it looked British.
    Jimmy Smith taught physics and calculus. I had him for my teacher my senior year. He was always responsible for the decorations, including staging. I don’t know if he came up with the theme, but he was definitely in charge of executing it.
    He used his physics class to do the prom as a sort of design project. We designed it (with his guidance, of course), then got out the saws and hammers and built it all. After we finished the construction, the underclassmen would be allowed in to put on the finishing touches. Calling it a physics project was probably a stretch, but the principal certainly gave him no trouble, even when we “held class” in the gym.
    I think that when he retired, there wasn’t anyone to replace him, at least as far as the prom project was concerned.
    He and GM were good friends.

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