Friday, May 29, 2009


Ralph C. Lambert (pictured above with his father Lewis Lambert) was selected for the Veterans Hall of Fame to represent the era of World War I. Ralph was nominated by his daughter Nora Hallenback. Ralph enlisted in the U. S. Army and served in Battery D 57th Artillery CAC. Nora wrote that: "Private Lambert boarded the converted mercantile cruiser OTRANTO for a destination overseas with 780 troops and 380 crew members. On a Sunday morning, off the coast of Ireland, and during a horrendous North Atlantic storm, the OTRANTO was rammed by the S. S. KASHMIR also carrying troops. The KASHMIR, although disabled, made it to port. There was a loss of many, many lives. One of the lucky survivors was dad."


Wendell Bernard "Bud" Scheidt was nominated by his daughter, Wendy J. Barnum, for the Veterans Hall of Fame. He represents the World War II era. Wendy wrote that: "My father enlisted in the military on June 15, 1943, immediately following graduation from Lake Odessa High School. Originally trained as an air cadet at Case Western Reserve University, he was transferred to the infantry when the army's need for more infantrymen became increasingly evident.....My father's military career came to an end in Belgium, 1945, when the jeep he was driving hit a land mine. When he recovered consciousness, he was in a hospital in Paris. Later transferred to a hospital in England then Chicago, he finished his recuperation at Fort Custer, where after several months, he was released. He was awarded the Purple Heart, two Bronze Stars and the Good Conduct medal for his service."


Selected to represent the post World War II era for the Veterans Hall of Fame was Lyle Faulkner. His daughter, Terri Slade, wrote the letter of nomination. She stated that: "My dad was in high school at the time of World War II and his parents refused to give their permission for him to quit high school and join the military so when he turned 18 in August of 1945 he enlisted in the Navy. He was taken by bus to Detroit to leave for basic training from there the following day. When they got up in the morning and went outside preparing to leave there were all kinds of people in the streets cheering. He asked someone what was going on and they tol dhim that the Japanese had just surrendered. He always told us, as kids, that they heard he was coming so they surrendered!"


Jimmie Lee Reese was selected for the Veterans Hall of Fame to represent the Viet Nam era. Jimmie was nominated for this honor by his sister, Betty Soule. Jim went into the army and to Viet Nam in March of 1969. He served his country until November of 1970. When he returned home he suffered from severe diabetes. His health issues continued for many years. In 2006 Jimmie passed away as a result of a heart attack. Betty wrote in her nomination letter that: "Jim's many friends have many memories. He is missed by all who knew him."


Nyle Yates III was selected for the Veterans Hall of Fame representing the War in Iraq. The letter of nomination for Nyle was submitted by a friend Jessica Cazarez-Harmon. Corporal Nyle Yates died on March 16, 2006, while serving his country in Iraq. Nyle was assigned to the 3rd Battalion, 187th Infantry, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault), Fort Campbell, KY. Nyle grew up in the Lake Odessa area and attended Lakewood Public Schools. In Jessica's letter of nomination she wrote: "There isn't a day that goes by that Nyle Yates isn't remembered in our hearts and minds and by honoring him at this military tribute, his legacy will continue on in our community forever."

Tuesday, May 26, 2009


There was standing room only on Friday evening, May 22, as the Lake Odessa Community gathered to pay tribute to the five inductees into the Veterans Hall of Fame. Chosen for this year's honor were: Ralph C. Lambert, Wendell Bernard "Bud" Scheidt, Lyle Faulkner, Jimmie Lee Reese and Nyle Yates III. Each of these honorees were highlighted with a display and a verbal tribute. Family members represented each veteran and accepted a Certificate of Honor. This was a highlight for the week-end which included a display covering all local veterans and those currently serving in the military. Many additional items were donated to the museum which adds greatly to this growing collection. Continue to watch this blog as biographies of each of those from the Veterans Hall of Fame will be featured.

Friday, May 15, 2009


This photo, dated July 3, 1950, not only shows the patriotic celebration of that year but also the street scene on the east side of Fourth Ave. Shown at the far left is the old Kroger Store and then the five buildings which have since been torn down. Today this is the parking lot area next to Dr. Barnett's building. It is hard to imagine that five structures were nestled in that small area but here is the proof! Nelson's News Stand is the most prominent of these wooden buildings which were some of the oldest on Main St. This is a classic photo of Lake Odessa during the 1950's....including the cars!!!


Located on the "north end" of town, Urtel's General Store was a long time business in the Village of Lake Odessa. The store was on the northeast corner of Fourth Avenue and Tupper Lake Street and was opened by Fred A. Urtel in 1913. Mr. Urtel continued in business for over thirty-five years when he sold out to Leroy Catt in 1948. How many remember Urtel's Store? Share a comment here and tell us your memories of this old time general store!

Monday, May 11, 2009


One of the current projects of the Lake Odessa Area Historical Society is the restoration of the Hosford House. The photo above recently resurfaced and it was a great surprise to see a distant view of this house in its original location on Third Avenue. The house, built by Samuel O. Hosford in 1887, is shown in the photo as the second house from the left in the foreground. The original is quite dark but it is wonderful to have this depiction of the house in about 1910. One of the most imporant things shown in this view is the front porch which will need to be replaced. This view helps us to know the design of that porch and how it looked originally. Since the house has been moved from its Third Avenue location the Society has been able to set it upon a new foundation, completely replace the roof and clean out some of the interior debris. Funds are being raised to place new exterior siding on the structure. The total cost for the siding will be approximately $18,000.00. Any donations toward this project would be greatly appreciated and will help to further this project along.


This display of military photos was exhibited during World War II in 1943. Community members were asked to bring a photo of their family members who were in the service. This was a great reminder of who was serving our country at that time. The Lake Odessa Area Historical Society will be hosting a Military Display and Tribute during Memorial Day Week-end 2009. Displays will feature all eras from the Revolutionary War to the present. The Society is asking those that have photos, memorabilia and other items related to anyone who has served in the military at any time to please loan, donate or share your items for this display. It is the goal of the society to represent everyone who has served our country from the Lakewood area.
For more information please contact the Society through this blog or by email.

Friday, May 8, 2009


On Saturday, May 16, the Woodland High School Alumni will hold their annual Alumni Reunion at the Woodland School. The Lake Odessa Area Historical Society chronicles all of our AREA history and this includes Woodland. The photo above was taken in 1907 of the Woodland School showing the interior of the first school building. There is no identification on this picture and if anyone can help with this please contact the Society. Congratulations to those who will be gathering this Saturday and to those celebrating 50 years.....the Class of 1959!!!!
(Notice that this picture was taken on May 8......102 years ago today!)

Wednesday, May 6, 2009


Even though this photo is not dated there is not any question where it is! Main Street Lake Odessa is unmistakable......the landscape has remained pretty constant over the years. Some things are noticeably changed today....the absence of the water tower, the brick street, etc. But, for the most part anyone who grew up in Lake Odessa would recognize the scene. The street was laid out as Fourth Avenue in 1887 as the town was first platted. It is hard to imagine but before this time a small creek ran from the west to the southeast directly through this area. The water still runs underground in what is known as the Brisbin Drain. The photo above depicts a quiet small that holds a great deal of memories for many. The stores have changed, the people have changed but the street remains as a landmark of our history.

Monday, May 4, 2009

LOHS 1959

June 27, 2009, will soon be here and the Class of 1959 will be celebrating their 50th Anniversary! The photo above shows this class.....we don't have the names put with the faces so if anyone can give us identification that would be a great help! All classes will gather on June 27 for the Alumni Reunion and the Lake Odessa Museum Complex will host an Open House featuring all classes and the history of Lake Odessa High School. Make plans to be a part of this memorable time.....this is open to everyone in the community even if you didn't graduate from Lake Odessa High! We are working toward the inclusion and transition to Lakewood High School and its history and a display will be included covering that history also.


It was great to have several of the "younger" generation share in the recent Mother-Daughter Tea. Planting strawberry plants was a treat and each one was able to take some home. One of the goals of the Lake Odessa Area Historical Society is to continue to encourage younger interest and this is just one more example of this. Look for more activities as we plant for the future!


It was a busy time around the Museum this past week-end! That's exciting! There was the Garden's Club Perennial Exchange, the Mother-Daughter Tea and the Tri-Rivers Museum Tour. Lots of activity to kick off the month of May. Robin Michalski and Alma Gray organized the Mother-Daughter Tea which was a great success. Some new faces were in the crowd and that was great to see! A nice afternoon of sharing and good refreshments emphasised the special relationship between mothers, daughters and grandmothers. Thank you to all who helped make this a special time. In the midst of this, the Tri-Rivers Museum Tour brought in several out of town guests who got a taste of the many varied interests that are focused on here in Lake Odessa.


The Lake Odessa Garden Club held its annual Perrenial Exchange this past Saturday at the Lake Odessa Museum Complex. It was a great time to trade plants, get garden tips and be motivated to go home and garden! The Lake Odessa Garden Club is part of the Lake Odessa Area Historical Society and maintains the flower gardens on the museum grounds. Their dedication and expertise make a beautiful setting for the historical buildings. The Garden Club meets the first Monday of each month at the Lake Odessa Museum and is open to anyone interested in gardening. For more information please contact the Society. Don't these ladies look like they are having fun???!!!!! Thanks Garden Club for a great job!!!!