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The ‘Lunch Bunch’: Class of ’55 ladies haven’t lost touch

By on December 12, 2017 in ACU News, Alumni News with 2 Comments

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Members of the Class of 1955’s “Lunch Bunch,” from the left: Wanda (Porter) Craig; Betty (Griffin) Hale; Linda (May) Hart; Joyce (Kent) Faver; Peggy (Gambill) Marler; Jo (Turner) Etter; Chris (Terry) Grounds; Bernice (Bourland) Scott; Betty (Phillips) Grant. In front: Nancy (Lewis) Ferguson.
Members of the Class of 1955’s “Lunch Bunch” (from left) are Wanda (Porter) Craig; Betty (Griffin) Hale; Linda (May) Hart; Joyce (Kent) Faver; Peggy (Gambill) Marler; Jo (Turner) Etter; Chris (Terry) Grounds; Bernice (Bourland) Scott; Betty (Phillips) Grant. In front: Nancy (Lewis) Ferguson.

Photo by Lisa (Scott ’86) Johnson

Bernice (Bourland ’55) Scott knew it had been too long. When she and her classmates reconnected at their 45th class reunion in spring 2001, she resolved not to lose touch with them again. A little less than a year later, she and six of her friends met for lunch in the back room of Abilene’s Towne Crier Steakhouse and kickstarted a new season of community and friendship.

Since their first meal together on Sept. 7, 2001, the “Lunch Bunch,” now 10 members strong, has been meeting monthly in restaurants all across Abilene.

“When we started, we took a vote, and everyone wanted to meet every month,” Scott said, “and with one or two exceptions, we haven’t missed a lunch in 16 years.”

Though several ladies knew one another during their tenure at ACU – two were suitemates, two were roommates, and several shared majors – the regular lunches, and the conversations that ensued, have fostered deep connection and a sense of family. They’ve rekindled old friendships and created new memories during the past 16 years, celebrating family milestones and mourning the loss of spouses and other loved ones.

“When we were in school, ACU was small enough that you knew everyone,” Scott said. “But we really became such good friends when we started meeting for lunch.”

At a recent meet-up for a group photo at the Hardin Administration Building, conversation – and laughter – flowed freely. As they waited for the final members of the group to arrive, the friends chatted amiably, sharing old stories and catching up on news since they last met, evidence of enduring friendships that come from years of life together in the Big Country. Their stories, and their renewed sense of community, can be traced back to a seemingly trivial decision: to get together every month and have lunch.

“I can still see that back room like it was yesterday,” Scott said of their first meeting. “Everyone was so excited! Even now, after so long, we still have a lot of fun together.”

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  1. Nona Sue (Keenon '55) Sheerer says:

    Such a great group of ladies there! And what a wonderful tradition. Wish I were close enough to join you all.

  2. Pat Varner says:

    What a phenomenal group of ladies. You make ACU proud. Thanks for all your examples for all these years.

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