Wayne Neale grew up on Poplar Road, son of two of my favorite people, the late Robert and Edythe Neale. He recently emailed a list of his memories of growing up in Morningside. Those of you, of a certain age, will remember when life in Morningside — or any small town— was sort of like this:
• The summer recreation program, including the crafts and fair day. And the Boys’ Club with a sport for every season, coached by the Misters Pitts, Bivens, West, Patterson and many more.
• The Christmas tree lighting and carols at the circle on Randolph Road.
• Cub Scout meetings at my den mates’ houses hosted by the respective den mothers. And, swimming lessons at the Naval Research Lab, hosted by the den fathers. And, larger pack meetings at Bell’s Methodist Church emceed by Dice West, the father of 5 Cubs himself.
• The annual air show in May at Andrews Air Force Base, with the Blue Angels.
• A greaser haircut at Johnson’s Barber Shop. For the girls, a beehive hairdo next door at Skyline Hair Stylists. And, a nickel Coke from the crank machine outside of Mr. Parr’s five-and-dime store.
• The Morningside Drum and Bugle Corps blasting away in the Fourth of July parade.
• Waiting with books in hand, in group, in the cold for the high school bus at the 7-Eleven or Marianne Circle stops.
• After high school was out, basketball at the elementary school with pickup teams. Or, pinball and snacks at Aubrey’s Snack Bar. And, in the fall, improvised football games on Saturdays.
• Sub-teen and then Teen Club dances on Saturday nights at the school, chaperoned by Tillie Seaman, Waverly Miller and Matt Roach.
• The Morningside Fire Department Ladies Auxiliary meetings on Tuesday nights. My mother always attended, and judging from the pictures, I think it was for the desserts.
• These are just a few of my many wonderful recollections of growing up in a small American town. I don’t think that there could be a better one.
Thanks for the memories, Wayne Neale!
Neighbors and other good people
In my May 23 column, I listed area residents who died in Vietnam. I had a caller who told me his friend, William H. Wardman of Berkshire also died in the War, in September 1969. He was a Suitland High graduate.
Elsie Mothershead died March 26 at the age of 94, still living in the house on Beauford Road that she and her husband Vernon bought 70 years before. Vernon died in 1993. Now their daughter Mary Knight lives there with her mom’s cat, Little One, and her mom’s amazing collection of vintage plates, statues, magnets and more, featuring Betty Boop, John Wayne, American Indians, 1950s autos, you name it — thousands of collectables, through three rooms, covering every wall. Beautifully arranged. It’s magic. And Mary is working to keep it as Elsie left it.
Morningside volunteer firefighters visited Suitland Elementary School on Career Day, June 3. They discussed fire safety with the students, showed them around the rescue truck and let them try on fire helmets. They said it was a beautiful day, spending time with the community.
Morningside’s next town meeting will be June 18 at 7 p.m. in the Town Hall. And Morningside’s annual Fourth of July Parade is coming up. Put it on your calendar.
Hogs on the Hill has closed and, in its space, Nana’s Pit BBQ & Seafood has opened at 9021 Woodyard Road in Clinton. If you try it, email me a review.
OTO Development has broken ground on what will be Hyatt Place National Harbor, the first Hyatt-branded hotel in Prince George’s County. The seven-story, 156-room waterfront hotel is scheduled to open in late 2020. It’ll join National Harbor’s eight other hotels: MGM, Gaylord, AC Hotel, Weston, Hampton Inn, Residence Inn, Wyndham and Harborside Hotel.
Anita King is performing at Christ Episcopal Church in Clinton on Sunday, June 23, 4 to 6 p.m. Tickets are $15 and include light refreshments. As always, children are welcome. The church is at 8710 Old Branch Ave. Info, 301-868-1330.
Joe Loscocco, security specialist
Master Sgt. Joseph F. Loscocco USAF (retired), 73, of Waldorf and formerly of Camp Springs, died April 26 in Waltham, Mass. He grew up in Boston and joined the Air Force after high school.
He served in Vietnam and then became a security specialist at Grand Forks AFB in North Dakota, Berlin and Andrews AFB. In retirement, he worked for ManTech International.
Joe was a longtime parishioner at Saint Philip’s where he taught CCD. He was past master of Camp Springs Masonic Lodge #227. He enjoyed woodworking and square dancing.
Survivors include daughter Nicole VanZandt and six siblings. Mass of Christian Burial was at Our Lady, Comforter of the Afflicted Church in Waltham with burial at Cheltenham. Memorial donations may be made to The American Parkinson Disease Association, the disease that Joe suffered from for many years.
Happy birthday to Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, June 14; Kara Dameron, Dot Pfeil and June Zaccagnino, June 15; Helen Padgett and Lucia Scott, June 16; Bill Kimbles, June 18.
Stephanie Phipps, June 19; Christian Nichols and Michael Taylor, June 20.
Happy anniversary to Jill and Ken Kimmel on their 21st, June 15; Ange and Marlyn Meoli, their 57th on June 16; Steve and Cornelia Blankenship, their 14th on June 18; and Calvin and Debbie Brown, their 26th on June 20.
And to my parents, Dick and Rose Mudd, on their 91st anniversary, celebrated in Heaven. They were married June 20, 1928, at St. Mary’s Church in Ravenna, Neb.