Welcome West Branch High School Alumni Association West Branch, Michigan


West Branch High School Alumni Scholarship Donations 2018
Poetry and Prose By Alumni
County History
Ogemaw County Historical Society
Military Memories...
Curtis Family Pictures...
Sports Memories
Photographs & Clippings of Interest
Ed Gould His Life And Times..West Branch Pharmacist and Drug Store Owner...
Teacher Salaries 41-42-43-44-45-46
Ogemaw Hills Ski Park
Ogemaw Hills Royalty
Snow Queen Candidates 1948
1946-1947 Kindergarten
Relatives ETC
Baby Pics
2008 Alumni Banquet Pictures '50-'51'52-'53-'54-'55-'56-'57-'59
2008 Alumni Banquet Pictures '33-'38-'47-'62-'63
2001 Banquet Pictures
2002 Banquet Pictures
Janet Allen LaFond Paintings -Class of 1954
1890 With Picture
1891 With Picture
1893 With Picture
Helpful Hints
Administration/Sponsor 1933
1942 Cousins
Class of 1942 25th Anniversary 1967
Class of 1942-40th Anniversary
Class of 1948 Biographies A-C
Class of 1948 Biographies D-E-F
1948 Admin/Advisors
Jack Thompson Bio Class of 1949 New Pictures Feb 25th 2011
1952 Alumni Bio A-B
1952 Alumni Bio C-D
1952 Alumni Bio E-H
1952 Alumni Bio L-M
1952 Admin/Sponsors
Alumni Bio Class of 1953-A-B
Alumni Bio Class of 1953 C-D
1953 Admin/Sponsors
Alumni Bio Class of 1954..A-B
1954 Admin/Sponsors
Alumni Bio Class of 1956-A-B
Alumni Bio Class of 1956 C-G
1956 Admin/Sponsors
Class of 58..50th Celebration..May 24, 2008
Obituary Links
2010 Scholarship Contributions
2009 Scholarships Awarded With Pictures
2008 Scholarship Fund Contributions
2008 Scholarships Awarded
2007 Scholarship Winners
2011 Business Meeting Minutes
2010 Business Meeting Minutes
2009 Business Meeting Minutes
2008 Business Meeting Minutes
2007 Business Meeting Minutes
2006 Business Meeting Minutes
2005 Business Meeting Minutes
2004 Business Meeting Minutes
2003 Business Meeting Minutes
2002 Business Meeting Minutes
2001 Business Meeting Minutes
2000 Business Meeting
1999 Business Meeting
1998 Business Meeting Minutes
1997 Business Meeting Minutes
1996 Business Meeting Minutes
1995 Business Meeting Minutes
1994 Business Meeting Minutes
1993-Business Meeting Minutes
1992 Business Meeting Minutes
1991 Business Meeting Minutes
1990 Business Meeting Minutes
1989 Business Meeting Minutes
1988 Business Meeting Minutes
1987 Business Meeting Minutes
1986 Business Meeting Minutes
1985 Business Meeting Minutes
1984 Business Meeting Minutes
1983 Business Meeting Minutes
1982 Business Meeting Minutes
1981 Business Meeting Minutes
2012 Scholarship Contribution
2012 Contributions To Picture Refurbishing Fund
2011 Scholarships Awarded
Refurbishing Class Pictures Fund 2011

Reservations for 2019 Alumni Banquet
Helen Hasty Jennings
Jack Weir
Dennis Richardson
* * *

Chester Surline, Supt.
Hollis Miner, Principal
Shirley J.Maxam, Class President
Elyse Heinecke, Sponsor
Alan Murray, Sponsor
* * * * * *

Marlene Abbott Caverly
Richard Bachelder
Josephine Bailey Neubecker
Lois Baldwin Brindley 
 Vernon Beckwith
Frances Biltoft Davis
Shirley Bradley Bennett
Mary Jane Brewer Nagy
Ann Burkett Sass
Elton Clayton
Sally Cooper
Florine Copeland Antcliff
Richard Couture
Margie Dack Horner
Vivian Dent Gage
Russell Dotson
Caroline Egon Oyster
John Gustafson
Fred Hamann
Delaphine Harris Fuller
Helen Hasty Jennings
Ronald Hughey
Joe Kelly
Irene LaRoque Chabot
Don Martin
Shirley Maxam Behrens
Delores McCall Hamm
Barbara McCallum Murphy
Thomas Melrose
Phyllis Morrison Bach
Irene Myas Bosworth
Thomas Palm
George Partlo
Leo Payne Jr.
Betty Perkins Blaisus
Paul Poling
Tom Poling
Alan Richardson
Dennis Richardson
Norman Ritter
Carolyne Rosenthal Farrand
Georgianna Scott Mackey
Marilyn Smith Zick
Dale Spencer
Ronald Sutton
Elizabeth Toutant Guy
Ray Valley
Jack Weir
Don Winslow
Geraldine Withey Gwyn
William Daws

Ronald Hughey, 87, of Port Charlotte, Fla., former longtime resident of West Branch, passed away June 12, 2019.

Ronald was born Aug. 30, 1931, to John and Fay Hughey. He attended West Branch High School and lived in the area from 1966-1989.

He will be missed by his wife, Helen Irene Hughey; brothers, Tom, Gary, Doug, Roger and Ken; children, Cecilia, Linton, Morris, Steve, Wayne and Amanda; several grandchildren; and several great-grandchildren.

He was predeceased by one brother, Richard; and a daughter, Debbie.

Vivian Gage, 84, of Prescott passed away at her home surrounded by her family on Sunday, April 3, 2016.
Vivian enjoyed playing cards and dice with family and friends.
She is survived by her daughter, Cindy (Ted) Middleton; son-in-law, Larry McElroy; daughters-in-law, Joan Gage and Linda Gage; siblings, Claudia (Ken) Summons, Joann (Jack) Sharrow, Marjorie (Tom) Ball and Kurt (Connie) Dent; grandchildren, Edward, Tammy, Jim, Amber, Stacy, Joshua, Venessa, Justin, Devin, Brittany, Daniel III, Julieann and Lincoln; and many great-grandchildren, nieces and nephews.
She was preceded in death by her husband, Daniel; children, Kitty, Gary and Daniel II; her parents, Bob and Thelma Dent; and brother, Terry Dent.


Jeannine Marie Nienaber

Jeannine Marie Resteiner, 83, passed away June 9, 2016, with her family by her side at the La Siena Senior Living Community in Phoenix, Ariz.

Jeannine was born June 15, 1932, in Rose City to William and Emma (Benjamin) Nienaber. She enjoyed a large extended family of grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins while growing up in West Branch. After graduating from West Branch High School with the class of 1950 she worked for the Bell Telephone Company in Detroit.

On a visit home to West Branch she met her future husband Walter Resteiner, who was home on leave from the Korean War. They were married Dec. 27, 1952. This would be the beginning of a great adventure for both of them, living and loving life together.

In 1964 they left West Branch and moved to Colorado, where they owned and operated several businesses throughout the state. Jeannine was very involved in running the family businesses that included the Dunes Motel, the Lamplighter Motel and the Dairy Queen in Alamosa, the El Mar Motel in Lamar and the Skipper’s Carwash in Monte Vista.

Jeannine’s love of Jesus her Savior, love for others and her passion for life was a great example of a life well lived. She enjoyed sailing, skiing, golf, reading and spending time with children and grandchildren. She volunteered at church, Assistance League and animal shelters.

Jeannine was preceded in death by her parents; her brother, Ed “Bud” Nienaber; and her husband, Walter.

Jeannine is survived by son, Craig (Bonnie) Resteiner; daughters, Melissa (Tom) Taylor, Ann Resteiner and Jeannine (Paul) Citoli; grandchildren, Jayme (John Rose) Catalano, Mandy (Jon) Edeen, Sarah Schwartz, Nicolas Resteiner and Emily Resteiner.

A memorial celebration was held at La Siena on June 26, and a private family graveside service was held in Cottonwood, Ariz., on June 27, 2016.


Stan Firkser (now Norman)
Died June 16, 2014

Stan Norman, formerly Stanley Roy Firkser, 82, of Auburn, formerly of Essexville, passed away on Monday, June 16, 2014.

He was born in Bay City on March 23, 1932, to Dorothea (Kaplan) and Norman Firkser. He resided in Prescott until the family moved to West Branch where Stan attended high school. He was an avid tennis player and was a Michigan high school state semi-finalist. He also played basketball and football. He had a life-long passion for tennis and University of Michigan football. In his senior year, when his father became ill, Stan left school to take care of his father and to run the family business, at that time, known as S.N. Weinberg & Co. Stan renamed the store ‘Norman’s’ after his father. He became a successful businessman and built the company into a thriving enterprise with multiple stores throughout the mid-Michigan area. Stan was a loving uncle and cousin.

Stan was predeceased by his sister, Larraine Weissman.

He is survived by his nephew, Michael Weissman; his niece, Michele Weissman; his grand nephew, Tyler Weissman; his cousins, Bette Entin and Irwin Robinson.



Mary Jane Brewer Nagy
April 8, 2014

Mary Jane Nagy, age 81, passed away with her loving family by her side on Tuesday, April 8, 2014 at St. Mary’s of Michigan Standish Hospital. Mary Jane lived in Sterling, MI for most of her life. She was born to Bryan and Theresa (Winter) Brewer on February 22, 1933 in West Branch, MI. Mary Jane married Art Nagy on December 27, 1952 at St. Joseph Catholic Church in West Branch. She was a school teacher where she primarily taught for over 30 plus years at Standish-Sterling Schools. Mary Jane was a member of the MEA Retired and St. Stephens Catholic Church. She enjoyed square dancing, casino trips, and spending time with family, especially her grandchildren. Mary Jane helped her husband, Art, on the farm and she also enjoyed gardening, traveling, playing cards, and was known for her great sense of humor. 

Mary Jane is survived by her loving children: Connie (Bill) McBride of Standish, Bryan (Pamela) Nagy of Sterling, Peter (Kelly) Nagy of Sterling, Amy (Andrew) Thorner of Wayne; grandchildren: Benjamin, Jonathan, Katie, Nolan, Aaron, Jacob, Danitra, Cliff, Christi, Kayleigh, Andrew; 19 great grandchildren; and sister-in-laws: Doris Brewer of Tawas, and Marion Brewer of West Branch. She is preceded in death by her husband, Artur, in 2013, brothers: Edsel and Ben Brewer; and parents: Bryan and Theresa Brewer. 



Ray Clare Valley, 80, of Haslett, was born June 29, 1932, in West Branch, the son of Clare F. and Catherine M. (Craft) Valley, and passed away very early March 11, 2013.

Ray attended the West Branch Public Schools and graduated in 1950. He was in the U.S. Army from early 1952 to late 1953, and served with the Army Intelligence Corps in Japan. He was assigned to Korea in November 1952, where he spent many months on the front lines, including one of the big battles for Port Chop Hill. He was honorably discharged in the fall of 1953.

After returning from the service, Ray married Emma Jean Ouderkirk in 1954, and that fall they settled into married housing at Michigan State University, where he pursued his higher education. On April 9, 1956, he enlisted in the Michigan State Police (MSP), and after his graduation from training was assigned to the Clinton Post. His tour of duty with the MSP included promotions and transfers to posts in Centerline; East Lansing (Organized Crime Unit); Alpena; and the Community Relations/Juvenile Section, Headquarters; and then closing his MSP career on April 9, 1978, as a lieutenant and assistant commander of the Training Division. Over the years he completed his bachelor’s and master’s degrees at MSU.

Ray began a second law enforcement career in 1978 as a special investigator in Attorney General Frank Kelly’s Medicaid fraud unit, and retired from that position early in 1995.

Through the years, he was actively involved in the Community of Christ, Rose Lake Congregation. He was an ordained minister (Seventy, which is a missionary) and served as pastor and co-pastor of the congregation. He always placed a great emphasis on the care and protection — physically or spiritually — of the people he was called to serve.

Ray was a loving father to Dr. Martin R. Valley and his wife Dawn; and grandfather to granddaughters Morgan, Lane, and Jordan.

He is survived by his wife, Emma; son, Martin (Dawn); and granddaughters; and his brother, Dick; brother-in-law, John (Patricia) Ouderkirk; aunts, Nellie Globke and Frances Valley; as well as nieces, nephews, cousins, and a host of friends (some of his fellow officers and friends were “almost brothers and sisters” in the joys and friendships they shared).


Sally Cooper
Marlene Barton Abbott
Shirley Bradley Bennett


  Vivian Dent Gage
(April 3, 2016)

Ray Valley
(March 11, 2013)
John Gustafson
Don Winslow
 (June 22, 2009)
Caroline H. Egon Oyster
(January 11, 2008)

Dick Bachelder

Vernon Beckwith

Frances Biltoft Davis
(February 2002)

Ann Burkett Sass

Richard Couture

William Daws
(March 2005)

Frederick Hamman

Delaphine Harris Fuller

Barbara McCallum Murphy

George Partlo

Marilyn Smith Zick

Dale Spencer

Ronald Sutton
* * * * * * * * * *
Don S. Winslow, age 78, Class of 1950.. of West Branch, passed away Monday, June 22, 2009 at his home after an extended illness. Don had lived in West Branch for all of his life. He was a member of the First United Methodist Church, the Odd Fellows Lodge #377, the Rebekah Lodge #137 and the Independent Order of Foresters. Don delivered home heating oil, installed and maintained furnaces in the West Branch area for 30 years.

Don is survived by his wife Margaret of West Branch, children, Brett (Janet) Winslow of West Branch and Brenda (Jeff) Chadwick of Tawas and grandchildren, Andy, Aaron and Michael. Also surviving are his sisters, Phyllis Seloom of Sanford, Janet Sayranian of Royal Oak, Marjorie (Curtis) Meuller of Alaska and his brothers, Larry (Victoria) Winslow of Au Gres, Duane (Dorothy) Winslow of Sanford and Roger (Janey) Winslow of Midland. He was preceded in death by his sister, Dorothy Meiser and brother, Keith Winslow.

Memorial Contributions may be made to the First United Methodist Church, West Branch.

Ben "Tom" Poling

Ben Tom Poling, age 80, of West Branch, class of 1950, passed away Thursday, January 19, 2012 with his family at his side. Tom had lived in West Branch most of his life and graduated from West Branch High School. He attended Michigan Tech in Marquette and served in the U.S. Army, stationed in Washington, DC during the Korean Conflict as a military policeman. He was a member and past Master of the Masonic Lodge and past patron of the Order of Eastern Star; as well as, a member of the Trinity Episcopal Church in West Branch. He was a former insurance agent and retired from the U.S. Postal Service after 30 years. Tom enjoyed bowling, playing cards, golfing and was a practical joker.

Tom is survived by his wife Carolee Poling, (class of 1954) of West Branch, children Steven (Ok Pun) Poling of Standish, Todd (Edna) Poling of Marietta GA and Tanya (Mark) Twigg of Windsor, Ontario, 8 grandchildren, Ryan, Jeremy, Travis, Martina, Claudio, Emily, Allison and Ashley. Also surviving is his sister, Mary Ida Poling Jackson (Class of 1948),, sisters in law, Marlene Bamfield,class of 1951) Jean Lucas and Joan Poling all of West Branch and Elaine Lucas of Alger, brother in law, David (Nona) Lucas , (class of 1959)of West Branch and many nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his son Gregory Troy Poling, his parents Stacey and Lena Poling and brothers, Stacey Poling and Paul Poling.  

In lieu of flowers, Memorial Contributions may be made to Trinity Episcopal Church



Paul A. Poling

Paul A. Poling, age 78 of West Branch, passed away Tuesday, August 2, 2011. Paul graduated from W.B.H.S. in the class of 1950, He served on the Tolfree Memorial Hospital Board of Directors for many years, was a member of the Moose Lodge, the Kiwanis Club and the West Branch Country Club.

Paul is survived by his daughter, Janis Fontenot of Rose City,  grandsons, Paul, Josh and Jordon and 2 great-grandchildren.

 Also surviving are his brother Thomas, Class of 1950, and and Tom's wife Carolee Lucas, Class of 1954,and his sister Mary Ida Poling Jackson, class of 1948.. He was preceded in death by his wife Barbara and his 2 children, Michael Poling and Jill Fournier and his brother Stacey Poling.


Paul Poling Establishes Scholarship Fund
Paul Poling committed years of his life to strengthening West Branch Regional Medical Center. Now, even after his death, he will do so through a scholarship outlined in his will to help residents pursue health-related careers and return home to serve the community
The Paul A. Poling Memorial Fund is being established at the Tolfree Foundation to grant annual scholarships, beginning in 2012.
The scholarship fund is being created through a significant donation, which Poling left to the foundation. The final amount will be determined when his estate is settled sometime
next year.
The former Board Member for West Branch Regional Medical Center and founder of the Medical Arts Center, died
August 2, 2011 at the age of 78.
Poling had a passion for the West Branch area and the people who live here. He was born in Rock Bridge, Ohio, and moved to West Branch in 1934, at the young age of two.  He grew up here and went on to serve in the U.S. Air Force before returning home and putting himself through insurance training. Upon the death of Ester Diebold, he bought her Diebold Insurance Agency and operated it from 1956 to 1983, when he retired and sold the business to Kevin Elliott.
"He wouldn't think of living anyplace else," said his sister Mary Jackson, also of West  Branch. "This was his home."
Having been raised on a tight budget, the youngest of four children, Poling worked hard to earn the money he lived on.  He has donated generously to the West Branch High School Alumni Association for scholarships.
One of the reasons he left money to the foundation is to
provide funds for kids to go to medical school, with the idea they would then come back to West Branch.  Paul was concerned about having enough doctors in the community. He wasn't seeing an influx of doctors into the area to replace the doctors who are retiring.
This is Paul's way of giving back..


G. Troy Poling, age 50 of West Branch, passed away Tuesday, November 30, 2010 at his home. Troy had lived in West Branch for all of his life. He was a member and past Master of the West Branch Masonic Lodge #376. F & AM, and a member of Bikers for Kids. Troy enjoyed hunting, fishing, camping and riding motorcycles. He was also a member of the Bay City Consistory.

Troy is survived by his parents, Carolee and Ben Tom Poling of West Branch, brothers, Steven (Ok Pun) Poling of Standish and Todd (Evie) Poling of Marietta, GA and his sister, Tanya (Mark) Twigg of Windsor Ontario, Canada. His aunts, Marlene Bamfield, Mary Ida Jackson, Joan Poling, Jean Lucas, all of West Branch and his aunt Elaine Lucas of Alger; his uncles, Dave(Nona) Lucas and Paul Poling all of West Branch and many, nieces, nephews and cousins. Also surviving is his former wife/best friend Charon Poling, her two sons Zach and Eathan and grandson Gavin.

                            * * * * * * * * * *


Caroline H. Egon Oyster
February 5, 1932-January 11, 2008
Caroline Helen (Egon) Oyster, born February 5, 1932 and passed away January 11, 2008.
Loving mother, grandmother, great-grandmother and sister.
 Her hobbies include playing bingo, going to the casino, recipes, strawberries, raspberries and traveling.

Caroline is survived by her children, Verna Jo Oyster Houck of Twining, Carol Oyster and Kenneth Oyster both of West Branch and Mary (Robert) Cohen of Big Pine Key, Florida, 7 grandchildren and 2 great-grandchildren. Also surviving are her sisters, Genevieve Mier, Mildred Turland and Evelyn Jones and her brother, Emery (Laura) Egon.

 She was preceded in death by her husband of 24 years, Orville Oyster, her son David Oyster, sister; Catherine Egon, her brothers, James and Gilbert Egon, her parents, Elizabeth Johanna (Roll) Egon and Daniel Joseph Egon and her son in law, Richard Houck. 

* * * * * * 

Jelima M. Gustafson age 99 of West Branch, passed away Monday, March 28, 2011 at West Branch Regional Medical Center. She had lived in West Branch area since 1943. Jelima was a member of St. Joseph Catholic Church, St. Joseph Ladies Aid, and the Clement Fire Department. She owned and operated the Toutant General Store from 1943 to 1974 in Gladwin County. Jelima was an active bowler at Ogemaw Lanes and loved to play Bingo.

Jelima is survived by daughter, Betty Guy of West Branch, daughter, Lorraine (Chum) Illig of West Branch, son, Wallace (Donna) Toutant of Killeen, TX, stepson, Jim Gustafson of West Branch, 19 grandchildren, 36 great-grandchildren, and 30 great-great-grandchildren. She was preceded in death by husbands, Oscar Toutant and Albert “Swede” Gustafson, son, Robert Toutant, daughter, Katherine Toutant, grandchildren, Alan Guy, Michael Toutant, and great-grandchildren, Danny Guy and Kathryn Cearbaugh.

Memorial contributions may be made to St. Joseph Church Renovation Project.

Class of 1950