Charles Peek Peek

Profile Updated: March 17, 2010
Class Year: 1960
Residing In: Grand Island, NE USA
Spouse/Partner: Nancy
Occupation: clergy
Children: George, born 1969; wife Laura Grace; child, Willie (1)
Noelle, born 1972; husband, Harlan; children, More…Brody (7) and Rowan (12)
Yes! Attending Reunion
Comments:

Spent 11 years in Lincoln as a "professional student" and got my doctorate in 1971. Also ordained as a priest in the Episcopal Church in 1971.

I married Nancy Jane Resler in 1965 and we have had two children, George born in 1969, now an attorney in Milwaukee, and Noelle born in 1972, whose interests are in writing and Christian Education/Youth work.

Noelle lives in Doniphan so we get to see her two sons, Rowan and Brody, and our son-in-law Harlan (sometime school principal, currently working for Eco-Drip) often; George, Harlan, Rowan, and I and some friends/colleagues are planning a pheasant hunting trip to southwest Nebraska this coming fall.

Nancy spent most of her years getting a masters, teaching in college or working for women's health services as a health educator.

Taught American Literature at UNL, Northern Arizona University, and University of Nebraska at Kearney. Served churches in Lincoln, Kearney, Hyannis, Mullen, Central City, and Grand Island, Nebraska and in Flagstaff and Williams Arizona. Wrote a couple of books and became something of a know-it-all about the writers William Faulkner and Willa Cather, which, along with $1.60 will get me a cup of coffee at Starbucks. Was awarded a Fulbright scholarship to teach in China, for six months in 2005 and 1 month in 2008. Presented papers on American writers at conferences in Italy, Spain, Canada, and China.

I've been back to McCook several times, both to put together and present a chronicle of the life of Harry Strunk, to speak on George Norris, and to present a program on Carl Sandburg, as well as to visit friends, watch parades, and go back to St. Alban's, the church where my dad served while I lived in McCook.

I've kept some track of Ward Rounds and Harlan Wyrick, and did for a few years with Betty Gnuse and Greg Harring among our teachers. I'm on Facebook.

For fun I belong to the YMCA (despite breaking each shoulder once), write poetry, and travel (not so much fun anymore). Daily I offer up my right-wing friends, praying earnestly and without any visible effect that they turn from their wickedness and live. I am looking forward to seeing everyone who can be there and talking about those who can't.

School Story:

Our superintendent, R. G. Brooks, became Governor and we got a new superintendent. Incidentally, one of my students once spelled that Super Attendant! Anyway, the new one hadn't been there long until he saw cuts on the old mural that was on the wall of the auditorium. We were all herded into the auditorium--"Where you will all sit until one of you confesses to this malicious deed." No one confessed, of course, this time because no one had done it, so we were there a long time. While we waited, Greg Harring, the art teacher went out, examined the "cuts," measured them, went down the hall to Cliff Greenlee's custodial closet, and found the mop. Its metal bracket where the mop was attached was exactly the same measurement. Case solved, assembly dismissed. Cliff had swung his mop around and, without knowing it, scratched the mural. He felt terrible until Greg went to work on the mural and soon you couldn't tell it had happened. It is probably very childish of me that I still think of that superintendent as a, well, "non-contributor to the shaping of my character"!

Besides a blurb, I wanted to add a poem for our reunion and our friend Mike:

The Fiftieth Reunion
For Michael Steel Confer

History was our enemy then, the future was our friend.
And we were headed toward it in a fury.
How strong we wondered, if we thought at all
Could something as abstract as history be?
Young and yet to learn the gravity of its eons of weight,
We could barely have guessed how leather lashes
Could pin our wings, how our fuselage could flare into flame
No matter how high or how fast we were flying.

History was colorful dragons on silk jackets.
History was glassed in medals and trophies,
History was the glories in the pictures on the walls of the halls,
Or, the dent that warped the locker door
Where someone from an earlier class had kicked it in
When his girl gave him back the class ring
Made to fit her finger by layers of nail polish.
History could be returned, the future was waiting.

But now, as our reunion looms ahead, we sense
How much the future has become our enemy,
And our history has now become our new friend,
Like the transfer student we’ve just started getting to know.
Our future, a dwindling dividend of days, while.
Our history holds what only we will ever know,
Who we were and what it was like to be us, then, there,
Something we can’t even explain to our grandchildren,
And can no longer talk about with those who are gone:

Whose jeans hung low, whose hair duck-tailed,
What made us laugh, what smoke got in our eyes,
The waxed car or hair curlers that preceded a date,
The 45 r.p.m.s or bad band and crepe paper streamers
That turned a dimly lit gym into a dance hall,
The way we held hands or slapped backs,
The cast of our eyes when we lost, or felt lost,

The choir room curtain that could never
Protect the girls where they uniformed up for band
From the eyes of the uniformed boys,
So ignorant of the knowledge that,
In those deceptive days between Korea and Vietnam,
Resided just beyond the so easily parted veil
And, once known, would draw down the curtain
On our young years.

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It's Charles Peek Peek's birthday today.
Oct
08
Oct 08, 2016 at 3:33 AM
It's Charles Peek Peek's birthday today. New comment added.
Oct 15, 2015 at 9:20 PM

Posted on: Oct 08, 2015 at 3:33 AM

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Posted: Dec 16, 2013 at 11:33 PM
I think this was taken by Cletus Brooks...not sure now. Pretty sure it was what was used for my graduation photo.
Posted: Dec 16, 2013 at 11:33 PM
In 2005, I was awarded a Fulbright to lecture/teach in China. At the end of our six months, we treated ourselves to a little homecoming trip stopping in Hong Kong, Singapore, and Tokyo. My wife had trouble dragging me from Singapore.