Harriet Ratliff - 1963
Bio & Picture from 40th Reunion
Update Christmas 2009
Update for 50th Reunion


Hi—Greetings from Colorful Colorado. Forty years since high school graduation!!!! I remember my dad going to his 4Oth reunion and I thought, “how old.” Would I really want to go to my 40th reunion? And the answer is ‘yes.’ I want to see how old everyone else is!

Let’s start with the present and work back. I am the Postmaster of a small Post Office in Watkins, CO. only about 15 miles from home. I have been Postmaster since 1994 after paying my dues as a part time clerk for the first 15 years and working all hours of the day and night at a number of different offices and working Saturdays and Sundays. Now I work 8 5, Monday through Friday and no weekends and no holidays. So now I know I’m on the downhill slide into retirement.

I am married to a great guy and have been for 37 years. We have 2 daughters, Kerry and Kelly, both married. Kerry to Todd and they live close to us in Strasburg and Kelly to Troy. Kelly has a little 5 year old daughter who is the light of our lives and they live in Parker, Co. Little Miss Hannah keeps us on our toes and we try to spend as much time with her as possible. Grandkids are the greatest.

My husband, Bill, started out as a High School Business teacher, but 30 years ago lost his head and bought a hardware store giving up weekends, holidays, and summer vacations. But the store has been good to us and our family. The girls see how hard we have worked and decided there is an easier way to make a living, so neither family is interested in buying and taking over the business. So we’ll look for someone else that would like to work 7 days a week, be tied down 24 hours a day, only to be able to say “1 own my own business.”

About myself after Hickman High School, I went to Stephens College and graduated with an AA degree in fashion. Then on to M.U. majoring in Home Economics not caring for the school—it was way too big for me. It was a good thing I went to Estes Park, CO to work for the summer, met Bill and decided to get married, because I probably would have quit otherwise. Bill and I were married in June, 1966 and moved to Greeley, CO that fall for Bill to finish school. It took me a little longer as I worked to put him through and also had to commute so I couldn’t always take a full load. But I finished in 1969 with a teaching degree, just before our oldest daughter was born. She was my special graduation present. I did teach a couple of years but decided to raise a family instead.

We moved to Strasburg, CO after college to teach only 1 year, as it was not a prosperous looking town and we thought we could do anything for a year. Now 36 years later, we finally left Strasburg and built a new home 6 miles down the road and moved to Bennett, CO It’s hard to say I live in Bennett as they were arch rivals all the while our girls were in school sports. But we love our new home, the open space and the golf course.

Now that our family is grown and gone (sort of-they still come back frequently) we have never suffered from the empty nest syndrome. We are doing the things we didn’t have time to do before. First of all, we got into the old car groove (Model ‘A’s to be exact.) We have a 1928 Roadster, a 1930 4-door and a 1931 pickup, (a basket case.) We tour with a club and have gone to Reno, NV, Wichita, Kansas City and Calgary, Canada, to list a few AND we drive — not trailer. In 2001 we experienced a taste of international travel just after 9-11 having gone to London for a week, and on to the Canary Islands and experienced no troubles in travel at that time. I would go again in a heartbeat. I could be a real travel bum—if someone would just send money!

I definitely enjoyed all phases of my 40 years since Hickman High School. I am looking forward to many more. I still return to Columbia a couple of times a year as my family still live there. On occasion I have bumped into an old classmate which is fun and am looking forward to seeing you at the reunion. I have had lots of experiences and challenges, ups and downs, but without them, where would we be.



August 19, 2012

Hi Charley,

Another brief update.  This retired life is the greatest.  Just wish someone would send money!!!

Bill and I love to cruise.  We have found out that river cruising is really fun also but then we really like the ocean cruising also.  We have been on quite a few cruises and a couple with our whole family.  Try that with a 5 year old through a 13 year old.  Sure glad their parents were in charge.

 We do keep very busy and sometimes wonder how we had time to work.  We are very active in the Model A Ford Club of Colorado and also the national Model A Ford Club of America.  I am presently serving on a national committee for era fashions for the Model A club.  I have gotten to travel some In that position and Bill ‘tags’ along.  We are both active in our church and sit on a number of non-profit boards.  One volunteer job is at the Denver International Airport as an ambassador for the ‘lost and lonely.’  And can you even believe that one day Linda O’Malley recognized me.  I don’t think it was fair though, as I had on a name tag so she put two and two together.  It was fun to see and visit with her as she was passing through the airport.  So if you are ever traveling through DIA on a Thursday afternoon, look for someone in a white cowboy hat and ask for directions.

 Both of our daughters and their families live close by so we get to spend lots of time with grandchildren.   And we try to attend as many of their activities as possible. My daughters and I do scrapbooking together.  I have a small in-home business of selling letter jackets to high school students and then sew on all their patches that they have earned.  It’s fun to get to meet some really nice students.

 Like I say, we keep busy and wouldn’t change a thing. 

 Harriet Ratliff McNeill

Charley,  I guess for a choice, I would vote for a weekend in August or September.  We are going to be out of the country on October 8 as we ended up with a semi-free river cruise .

Thanks for all your work.

Scroll down for new pictures.....

B & H with grandkids

Bill and Harriet in the Netherlands

Hannah, Troy, Todd, Kerry.Kellyand Lauren, Harriet and Bill, Maleah

Just walked across the Golden Gate Bridge


Maleah and Grandma Harriet at era fashion show

New shoes!

River Cruise

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