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Reunion held for alumni of demolished Abilene elementary school

By Kristen Pope, Reporter, kpope@ktxs.com
Published On: Dec 24 2013 10:08:14 AM CST
Updated On: Oct 14 2013 01:00:41 PM CDT
ABILENE, Texas -

Dozens of people gathered together Sunday to remember the good ol' days at Ben Milam Elementary School.

The school was torn down in the 1980s, but its school spirit is still alive and well. The school was first known as North Park Elementary.

The Friendship House sits where the old elementary school used to be, on Lowden Street between Hickory and Cedar streets. The building was torn down in the 1980s. 

Fred Stirnam's first job was as a teacher at Ben Milam.

"It was a concrete building that had been built with forms," Stirnam said. "The concrete pillars had split and so it wouldn't take much to knock it down."

The building may be gone, but the memories are still alive. Jackie Lanier Redwine spent more than a year putting this reunion together.

"There were so many children in the neighborhood that were within three or four years apart and we all congregated every day," Redwine said. "We played together for hours until the sunset and we would hear mama calling our name in the distance."

For Stirnam, no matter how much time passes, some names he will always remember.

"I had one student come up to me earlier this afternoon and said, 'Coach you remember me?'" Stirnam said. "I looked down at his name tag and read it. I'm not going to tell you his name. I looked at it and said 'How in the world could I ever forget you?'"  

Alumni can stay connected through the "North Park/Ben Milam Exes" Facebook page.