Sunday, January 11, 2009

Looking Good after 40 Years!!!

I was 10 years old.
I was in Grade Five.
I went to Upper Sumas School.
I wore my hair in a page boy style.
I had five brothers and my sister was not born.
Living on the family farm provided me opportunities of a life time.
My dad nailed up a basketball hoop on the side of the barn, no pavement, just gravel and that's when my brothers decided to teach me how to throw the ball in the hoop.
Of course, all the house/barn chores had to be finished.

My brothers and I attended MEI in our high school days. We did not make any choices.
One of my only outlets was to play on the Basketball team and in those days there were no parents willing to pick us up...We had to get home to chore.
But I found an older team mate who would offer to drive me home. YaHooo!!!!
(I could get out of farm chores!)
Somehow I was the first one in my family to play on the MEI school team.
I loved the game and continued playing through my college days at Briercrest.

Forty years later, I'm still sitting in the gym, cheering, getting fired up, for the TWU Spartens. I love to follow the game and feel so honored to watch my nephew Jon, play the game. Jon has played point guard for the past years, and is now recovering from an ACL injury.
But just watching his love, passion and inspiration for the game and his players, has inspired us to be a part of the TWU Spirit.

This past weekend, I was sitting in a crowd of spectators and noticed various old time friends. Finally I realized, that I was chit chatting to the starting five that played at MEI 40 years ago. (1965-1969). Doesn't that sounds so ancient?
During halftime I urged my brother, Vic to fetch a ball, and twisted all those gals arms to poise for an alumni shot in front of the TWU Spartans logo.

Starting from the left is Jake, (Ruth Sherk), long time friend, and sister to George Heidebrecht.
Cheryl Ohman,(Davies), mother of Liesa (TWU Womens Team), daughter of one of our favorite BB refs, Ed Davies, who passed away several years ago. (She was our downtown rivalry from Mission)
Then comes Marg Bartel, (Schmidt) who was a farmers daughter and loved the game. She, now actively watches her nephew Jon make Game plans for the TWU Spartans.
Cris Reimer, (Braun) daughter to Coach Eva and Jake Braun, who coached the MEI men's/girls teams up till 1970. Her daughter Stephanie also played for TWU Spartans.
Last, but not least is Elsie Schmidt, (Loewen), related to all the Loewens and Falks that have left a legacy in BB. She is also the proud mother of Jon and my wonderful sister in-law, who along with her husband Vic, have become our traveling buddies, to all the TWU games.

We still love to reminisce over one of the most historical basket ball moments, when MEI won the provincial tournament at UBC in 1963 with outstanding players George Heidebrecht, Ed Suderman, and Jim Falk.
Some of you will remember those days.....
We all congratulated each other, priding ourselves for staying fit and trim after 40 years.

I'm not sure who taught you this position Elsie....Could you please explain?

Those were the days my friends.....

Stay posted to see the final results of the Spartans and the Vikings.
On the weekend I heard the captain of the TWU Spartans say,
"Do you guys want to go to the Nationals or don't you?"

Stay posted and I'll bring you up to date with their latest recruit to the Spartan bench.


  1. Marg, you are quite the little firecracker. . . I love your enthusiasm for being active. I was into track and field and never caught the love for basketball nor volleyball. Also. . .I was a panther cheerer.'ll know what I mean by that. However, since our sons also attended TWU and we have strong ties there. . .woo hoo we are now on the same team.

    I am surprised that you girls didn't offer to take on the team yourself in half time.

  2. Lovella, there was talk about putting on a half time show, but on the other hand...

  3. Those were the days my friend! I only dabbled in basketball in back then...because there was no carpooling to Chilliwack for basketball players. But I see a few very dear friends in that line-up...and if I had to do it all over again, I'd be playing on your team! And I have fond memories of shooting hoops on your yard, Marg...always with the boys!

  4. Marg, that is awesome, it must have been like a homecoming to have the starting line up all together. It was neat to read your story. I played bb too, at Sardis high shcool, and we had fun as a team (although we sure didn't win much, we were enthousiastic). Dairymary

  5. What an interesting post! So fun to have such long time connections...and to see them continuing.

  6. Ever thought of joining a Senior Women's Basketball team? One of my mom's friends did, at SEVENTY, and the team went to play for a gold metal in the national competition.

    What's a few broken fingers, bruises, cuts, sprains at our age?

    Let me know if you sign on for a team, I'll be following the scores via Internet.

  7. You all look terrific. How cool that you were all there. I love school sports, and basketball is my favorite.

  8. Hi Marg ~ I enjoyed catching up on your last couple of posts. I agree that being self-employed, no matter what it is, can be hard work but it also has its upside. So I am just biting my lip and digging in. I loved the pictures of you with your basketball buddies. I was wondering if you were watching the NBA this season. My Celtics have had a roller coaster season. I do truly miss watching my boys play HS basketball. Those were fun days!

  9. Great post Marg! In played basketball too, in a CYO league. We had "girls rules" back then which didn't allow guards to pass the half line and we were only allowed 6 dribbles and then we had to pass. Can you imagine?

    You all look wonderful!

  10. my kids are all athletes and i hope that they will have great memories like this...looks like so much fun.

  11. You gals look great! How nice to still be in touch with one another.

    I love the piano music on your blog. It's one of my favorite hymns, "Be Thou My Vision".

  12. Marg .. there is a connection here for me !! I REMEMBER that game!!
    I did not attend the MEI but some of my church friends did.. and that Sunday after the game, PARENTS came to church with such hoarse throats they could not talk! smile...
    I remember trying to imagine these staid Mennonites screaming their heads off ... I couldn't quite manage it! smirk
    and I agree ! You are in GREAT SHAPE !!


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