Recently elected President of the Perry County High School Alumni Association, Diane Harrison, welcomed classmates and friends to the 28th annual meeting and fish fry on April 30th. Attendance of over 290 at the event had broken a record and for the first time lunch was provided by a food truck. A fried catfish lunch and sides were served by South fresh.
The group presented its highest award, “Alumnus of the Year”, to Jim Robertson of Helena, Alabama. The award stated: “In Grateful Recognition of your dedicated Service as a Member of Perry County Alumni Association. An Eagle Scout who lives his life by the Scout Oath & Law. Educated at Perry County High School, Marion Military Institute and Auburn University. 36-year career in Advanced Telecommunications. Willing Service to his Country and Community. Devoted to his Family and his Faith. Class of 1961.”
Jim is a member of PCHS Alumni Board of Directors. He handles the group’s mailing list, is administrator of their facebook and editor of the newsletter which he initiated to improve communication with the members.
His family members present for the award were his wife Judy, daughters Michelle and Sheri Robertson, granddaughter Megan Sullivan, sister Nancy Robertson, brothers Sam and Ron Robertson and sister-in-law Gail Lott Robertson.
The PCHS Alumni Association presented its 4th “Teacher of the Year” award to Claudine Anderson. The award stated: “PCHS Alumni Association presents its 2022 Teacher of the Year Award to Claudine Anderson, Graduate of Perry County High School, Judson College & The University of Alabama. Beloved English Teacher & Perri-Winkle Advisor. Lifelong member of the Marion United Methodist Church”. Mrs. Anderson’s son Ben Anderson accepted the award on behalf of the Anderson family.
Sherry L. Barton of Marion was recognized for her service as President of the PCHS Alumni Association for 21 years. She was one of the founding Directors when the organization was “chartered” in 2001 and soon after was elected its first President. Sherry faithfully led the group and in partnership with the Perry County Historical Commission, has helped preserve and maintain the 1850 Marion Female Seminary/Perry County High School building.
Brooks Moore of Huntsville, AL (’44) a retiring Director, received a certificate for his outstanding service since 2001. Brooks was the association’s Alumnus of the Year in 1997. Jerry Moore (’64) of Marion, a retiring Director, received a certificate for his outstanding service.
Eleven members of the family of Col. Carl Cooper attended the PCHS Alumni group’s “Coach Cooper Day” to accept the association’s expression of gratitude for their donation of Coach Cooper’s memorabilia to the PCHS museum. The collection and preparation of the items was coordinated by nephew Danny Cooper (Montgomery), Danny and Coach’s grandson Bill Fant (Birmingham) spoke about Coach Cooper. Other family members present were: Charles Cooper, Malcolm Cooper, Dava Fant, Ezra Fant, Madison Fant Locamo, Sydney Fant Cole, Trevor Fant, Erin Hungler, Jason Fant, Mandy Fant Brogden, Todd Brogden, and James Cole.
Carl Cooper was a coach and teacher at PCHS from 1946-1954. He had served in the Marines and Marine Reserves for 38 years and had fought in WWII, Korea, and Vietnam. He died in 2021 at the age of 101. Col. Cooper loved Marion and PCHS and continued to attend the annual meetings and various class reunions.
Several of Coach Cooper’s players were present and recognized. They were: Roy Barnett, David Bauer (’55), Jim Brady (’53), Roy C. Crawford (’58), and Thomas Hill (’53), all of Marion and Jerry Warren (’53) of Cumming, GA.
Coach Cooper’s military portrait of the well known photographer Jeffrey Rease (www.portraitsofhonor.us) was displayed in the meeting room. Items donated by the Cooper family were exhibited in one of the upstairs museum areas. They included his sweater, football and basketball plays, photographs, news clippings and numerous other articles.
Working with the Cooper family representative, Danny Cooper, to accept and stage the artifacts was a committee chaired by Jim Robertson. Other committee members were two of Coach’s players, Roy Barnett and Jim Brady and association Vice President John Anderson.