Family & Friends
A longtime supporter and friend of FMCA passed away August 16, 2002, in Cincinnati, Ohio. Dorothy Scott, L63, known as Dotty, was the wife of the late Kenneth T. Scott, FMCA’s first executive director. She was 87.
Mrs. Scott was an enthusiastic motor coach traveler and participant in FMCA activities. She witnessed the growth of the association from its inception, and from 1965 to 1967, FMCA was headquartered in her own family room.
Mrs. Scott was born in Cincinnati on July 2, 1915. A talented dancer, she was offered the chance to join a professional dance group while in high school. Instead, after high school she decided to study at Miami University (Ohio) and in 1939 received her degree in physical education. She taught girls’ physical education at a school in New Philadelphia, Ohio, where she met Ken. The two were married in 1943 and moved to Cincinnati, where she taught in Cincinnati schools. The couple’s two children, Dee Dee and Ken, were born in ensuing years.
The Scotts’ involvement in motor coaching began in the 1950s. Ken rented a 1949 bus that a local man had converted for business use, and he and Dotty decided motor coaching was a great way to travel with their children. She was in favor of such travel from the start. Recalling those times a few years ago, Mrs. Scott said, “He brought it home and I said, ‘Let’s go!'”
The couple later purchased a GM bus conversion, and by the late 1950s they traveled in a 1947 Flxible bus that Ken had converted.
They were touring Maine in July 1963 when Ken had to slam on the brakes of their bus because a driver had pulled in front of them. The sudden halt caused a bowl of strawberries to spill onto the sofa, so Dotty asked Ken to find a place to stop so she could clean up the mess. Ken pulled into a gas station, where he met other motor coach owners who had just been at the meeting in Hinckley where FMCA was formed. Thus began the Scotts’ affiliation with FMCA.
In March 1965, FMCA’s first president, Bob Richter, L1, announced that Ken had been named FMCA’s executive director and that he would be handling member services. From then until June 1967, all of the association’s necessary phone calls, paperwork, and office work were handled in the Scotts’ Cincinnati home. Mrs. Scott literally lived with FMCA, and witnessed her husband’s labors, sometimes long into the night, to keep the young organization growing.
Mrs. Scott loved motorhoming as much as her husband did. Daughter Dee Dee recalled growing up with the motor coach lifestyle. “They took off in a converted school bus when I was about six months old,” she said. As the children grew, Mrs. Scott resumed teaching, this time at a local high school. Dee Dee said, “In our high school years, both Mom and Dad were teachers, so we traveled all summer in the motor coach. Mom kept journals of all the trips and every night she’d write about what happened.” Dee Dee recalled attending many FMCA conventions as a child. Each summer Ken and Dotty took the children across the country, eventually “through all 48 states, all the southern provinces of Canada, and into Mexico,” Dee Dee said.
Mrs. Scott continued to teach until 1969, when she received a master’s degree from the University of Cincinnati. Thereafter she served as a guidance counselor at a middle school. She retired in 1980.
The Scott family was a fixture at FMCA events. In 1976 Ken and Dotty joined the Tri-State Traveliers chapter, a group that includes FMCA members who live in the region of southwest Ohio, northern Kentucky, and southeast Indiana. Tony Bosse, L12557, one of the chapter’s founders, recalled that Mrs. Scott continued to associate with chapter friends even after her husband’s death in December 1996. Mr. Bosse said Dotty was “well-known and well-liked by everyone.” She also kept the type B motorhome that she and Ken owned and continued to travel in it and attend FMCA conventions as she was able.
Genny Jennings Luckey, L26, met the Scotts in 1964 at FMCA’s first convention in Fort Ticonderoga, New York. “I understood from early on that they had built their Flxible into a motorhome the same as we had, and we both had different problems with the coaches,” she said. “But Ken was a good mechanic, and Dotty did a lot of things that helped, too.”
Of Dotty, she said: “She was just full of spunk — full of life, and loved to do everything. She was energetic.” Mrs. Luckey remembered that the Scotts added to FMCA gatherings by initiating games and fun activities. “They were always very anxious for people to have a good time and enjoy everything.”
Mrs. Luckey said Dotty was “a member from the very first” of the Pipe Dreamers chapter, a group formed in 1991 and named for the columns Ken wrote in earlier issues of Family Motor Coaching. The chapter welcomes longtime FMCA members into its ranks, and Mrs. Luckey recalled that Dotty would visit with the chapter members, telling “stories of the days gone by.”
Dotty is survived by a daughter, Dee Dee, of Cincinnati, and son Ken and daughter-in-law Pauline, of Powell, Ohio. Services and burial were held August 21 in Cincinnati.
In addition to the loss being felt by her family and FMCA friends, Mrs. Scott’s energy, zest for life, and enthusiasm for motorhoming also will be greatly missed by the staff at FMCA headquarters office in Cincinnati, where she would stop by on occasion. Beverly Spurgeon, director of FMCA Member Services, began working for the association with the Scotts when she was in her high school years. “Mrs. Scott was FMCA’s greatest supporter,” Beverly said. “She was always upbeat, perhaps the most enthusiastic person I ever met. She could have fun just with little things. She was fun to be around.”
Memorials to Dotty Scott may be made to the FMCA “Round Up For Literacy” Fund, 8291 Clough Pike, Cincinnati, OH 45244.
G.L.A.S.S. Attendees Shine During 25th Anniversary Celebration
By Don Graham, F181499
Twenty-five years ago, representatives from the various Great Lakes Area chapters came up with a great idea. They planned a rally where members of the area chapters would travel to a central meeting place for a huge spring gathering. It would be called the “Great Lakes Area Spring Spree.”
The first of these rallies was held in Coldwater, Michigan, where 200 to 300 motorhomes converged. During the event, friendships were made, motorhome problems were discussed, and technical difficulties tackled. Genny Jennings Luckey, L26, one of the founding members of FMCA, was there for the first rally and has never missed a G.L.A.S.S. gathering. Many other members can boast the same attendance record. Because of the interest and success of the event, it was decided to make the rally an annual affair.
Twenty-five years later, we celebrated the phenomenal growth and success of the G.L.A.S.S. with our silver anniversary rally May 24 through 27, 2002, at the Berrien Springs Youth Fairgrounds in Berrien Springs, Michigan.
Since it began in 1977, the rally always has been an ideal way for FMCA family members to make new friends and learn about the latest accessories for their prized, rolling habitats. But much has changed since then, as well. Today’s motorhomes have nearly doubled in size and rally-goers now drive coaches with huge diesel engines, multiple slideouts, automatic awnings, GPS guidance systems, satellite televisions, and luxurious interiors.
The 2002 G.L.A.S.S. was a phenomenal success thanks to the leadership of rally masters Doug and Judy VanTuinen, F222441, and Larry and Maris Kalmbach, F232405. Of course, scores of other volunteers worked to make this rally a success. Wanda and Jim Riemersma, F211043, welcomed guests at the gate, while Evert VanderMei, F36453, attended to grounds security, and Paulette Pace, F156715, made sure the buildings were safely protected. Judd Kovalak, F179352, led the parking crew while Randy and Deb Johnson, F194543, and Gloria Sutton, F205618, handled registration. The VanTuinens set up the entertainment; Floyd Heimbecker, F181031, and Jo Wright, F222444, arranged the transportation; and Tom and Carol Ross, F198936, planned the seminars. George Abbott, F214693, coordinated the information area; Bev Trevena, F126849, organized the book swap; and Richard Coller, F185006, made sure all the important events were documented in photographs. Rally treasurer Cal Courtney, F158229, had one of the toughest jobs. He counted piles of money every day — then had to give it to someone else.
The 2002 G.L.A.S.S. brought together a record number of attendees. More than 2,000 eager visitors arrived at the fairgrounds in 1,201 motorhomes. Throughout the event the grounds were abuzz with happy tire-kickers, darting golf carts, clusters of friends who hadn’t seen each other for years, and the distant sounds of the Frustrated Maestros warming up their instruments. In addition, there were 102 vendors and approximately 100 new motorhomes on display. More than 70 seminars were offered, including fashion shows and crafts. In conjunction with the seminars, Don Crawford, F11012, Great Lakes Area national vice president, and Don Eversmann, F240000, FMCA executive director, brought members up-to-date on many association issues.
In addition to the seminars, rally-goers could take in tours of Monaco’s Elkhart, Indiana, factory and visit the Lemon Creek Winery. A golf tournament at the Hampshire Golf Club was hosted by Bill Schueller, F85235.
It was unseasonably cold during the month of May throughout the eastern part of North America, including Michigan. So imagine sitting outside for two hours in that record cold just to be entertained. Unbelievably, the grandstand was packed every evening. Some audience members even brought quilts or comforters to keep themselves warm.
Following a parade of flags by the FMCA Great Lakes Area chapters on Friday evening, country and gospel singer Lola Cagle took the stage. With her sparkling personality, Southern charm, and exceptional voice, she kept us captivated.
Ventriloquist Richard Paul brought his hysterical dummies to the grandstand on Saturday afternoon, and carried on a semi-intelligent conversation with them for an entire hour. That evening rally-goers enjoyed Don and James in “Eddy Rich’s Rockin’ Oldies Band.” The duo played guitar and bongos to the accompaniment of their own pre-recorded music, much of which they wrote themselves.
On Sunday morning, The Bird Family — Pauline, Brenda, and Pam — sang their renditions of old gospel favorites and new songs dedicated to devout living. Brenda also brought out her ventriloquism dolls, Jeremiah and Cedric, which were a hit with everyone in the audience.
Sunday afternoon, Betty Appleton, storyteller, dancer, and percussionist, entertained the young at heart. She has an extensive collection of percussion instruments, which she uses to transform a simple story into an exciting opportunity to sing, move, and explore rhythms. That evening we jiggled in our seats to the beat of the Boogie Woogie Babies. This talented female group regaled us with oldies from the World War II era.
Following each night’s entertainment, some lucky attendee walked away $100 richer thanks to the 50/50 pot. Door prizes also were drawn, and most folks remained in their seats, despite the cold, to see if they were winners.
On several occasions during the rally, the Frustrated Maestros entertained us with sparkling renditions of old-time melodies and stirring marching tunes. In addition to the stage performances, a group of young people known as The Voices of Freedom walked the grounds singing inspirational and patriotic songs a cappella.
Howard Cowles, F18517, who has led dance sessions at the G.L.A.S.S. for 25 years, once again instructed rally-goers in line dancing and confirmed his exceptional ability as a square dance caller. “Fashion Walk and Talk 2002″ was the title of this year’s fashion show directed by Marguerite Boyce, F59326, held in the grandstand. The appreciative audience watched as our chapter ladies modeled the latest day- and eveningwear and accessories.
Imagine trying to feed 2,000 people at the same time. Impossible? Not to the Great Lakes Area chapters who organized the food services directed by Tom and Gail Arnott, F82570, and John and Vada Bonnin, F132290.
Again this year the evening meals were scrumptious. Fried chicken, barbequed pork, scalloped potatoes, pasta salad, beef and chicken sandwiches, freshly baked buns, yummy desserts, and plenty of refreshments — everything to satisfy that hungry growl. And the breakfast was terrific, too. Occasionally lines were long, but thanks to sensational organization, everyone was seated and eating in no time. On one evening, the Berrien Springs Middle School provided a spaghetti supper, with tram service to and from the school. Daily ice cream socials were sponsored by Foretravel of Tennessee, C125; RV Alliance America, C95; and FMCA.
During the final ice cream social, the line for frozen treats became extremely long and the wait might have been extremely boring, except for the clowns. Twyla “Bluebird” Grovom, F117484; Marilou “Dutches” Yost, F143277; Bob “Dusty” and Dianne “Stitches” Metevia, F224961; Bob “Patches” Waite, F77640; Henry “Flakey” Gartner, F197563; and several other clowns waddled through the line with their slap-soled shoes, garish outfits, and red bulbous noses, distributing candy and amusing the waiting throng.
The rally was brought to a patriotic conclusion on Memorial Day with a parade of American veterans, which was led by the Berrien High School Marching Band. The group assembled at the flagpole where Bob Metevia raised the Stars and Stripes. While he and the other veterans stood at attention, Genny Jennings Luckey read a stirring tribute to those veterans who fought and died defending our freedom. Then the flag was lowered to half-staff to honor fallen veterans. It was a touching and inspiring ceremony and a worthy salute to the brave men and women of our military forces.
Barth International Rallies In Cincinnati
By Cherie Ilg Haas
FMCA members in 14 motorhomes from FMCA’s Barth International chapter gathered in Cincinnati, Ohio, this past April for a four-day get-together. They enjoyed the chance to visit some of the best attractions the city has to offer, from museums to markets. Rally masters Ted and Sayers Sarran, F23216, Cincinnati residents, made sure of that.
Since this was a local gathering, it was small enough to use FMCA’s own Round Bottom Road facility. All FMCA members are permitted to use the campground, which has 15 full hook-up sites and nine dry sites, for a maximum of two nights. But since chapter members agreed to limit rally attendance to no more than 20 coaches, the two-night restriction was waived to cover the four-day weekend rally.
The chapter’s first activity was to get to know FMCA a bit better. At the Round Bottom Road facility, the group toured FMCA’s Mail Forwarding and Membership Services departments. Ren Reynolds, F226375, thought the Mail Forwarding Department was impressive. “A lot of work goes into it,” he said. “It’s more organized than the Post Office.” FMCA’s main Clough Pike headquarters was their next stop, where they were given a tour of the Chapters, Convention, Communications, and Administrative offices.
By mid-morning they were on their way to the Cincinnati Museum Center, where they watched Shackleton’s Antarctic Adventure at the Omnimax Theater. “I still had sea legs when I left,” Ren said. The Omnimax screen is five stories high, and curved to give the effect that the audience is moving with the action. From there, the day took a more serious tone at the group’s next stop, the Cincinnati Shriners Hospital. “It just makes your heart well over with what they do,” Ren said. The pediatric burn hospital provides all of its services for free. “Some kids wouldn’t have a life without the burn hospital’s service,” he said.
After this active day, the Sarrans invited their fellow chapter pals to their Cincinnati home for dinner, and then it was back to the rally site for the night.
The next day proved just as busy, and if Ren thought he had sea legs at the Omnimax, surely he had them at the Newport Aquarium in Newport, Kentucky, across the Ohio River from Cincinnati. There, they were outnumbered by schoolchildren visiting the aquarium, so they called themselves the Barth school class.
The Cincinnati Art Museum was their next stop, where they spent an hour or so with a tour guide who showed chapter members the museum’s display of art and architecture. A short distance from there, the group visited the Krohn Conservatory, and then wrapped up the day with dinner at a local restaurant.
Although it was pouring rain the next day, chapter members drove to Fairfield (approximately 20 miles north of Cincinnati) where they shopped at Jungle Jim’s International Market, a place where they could have found just about any type of food under the sun. Jim and Dru Cunningham, F42092, bought some specialty chocolate, and Jim said everyone enjoyed shopping there. The interesting food didn’t end at Jungle Jim’s; for dinner that night, everyone went to the Iron Horse Inn, and had cannonballs for dessert. No, the wait staff doesn’t serve balls of lead — rather, a large scoop of chocolate ice cream covered in a thick layer of chocolate.
On the last day of the rally, the group also held a chapter meeting. At this and every rally meeting, members ask each other questions about what types of problems they’ve had with their coaches, and how they fixed them. This information is recorded in a book with the person’s name and phone number and printed in the chapter newsletter, so that other Barth owners with similar problems can get advice.
“There isn’t a week that goes by that somebody doesn’t call,” said Lee Merriman, F32086, chapter president. If he doesn’t have an answer, he probably knows someone who does when it comes to Barth coaches. And he truly seems to enjoy sharing his wealth of knowledge with others. “Once a Barth, always a Barth” is a saying that sums up this chapter’s membership. But since Barths are no longer made, members can stay in the chapter even if they sell their coach and buy an S.O.B. (some other brand).
“It’s almost like a big family,” Lee said. And that was easy to see during their rally, for everyone was friendly and seemed genuinely happy to be a part of this group.
No matter how big the rally is, a “sheriff” is elected within the chapter to issue citations to members for fun misdemeanors, such as leaving a light on in their coach, or dancing at breakfast. At the end of the rally, those with citations pay a “fine” that is donated to various causes. One member was fined during this rally for inadvertently eating someone else’s ice cream sandwich, and another was assessed for driving onto the wrong exit on their way to dinner. “The more ridiculous and crazy [the sheriff] gets, the more loose they get with their donations,” Ren said, who was the sheriff for this rally. “I was an inspector in the military, and I can be pretty picky,” he added. At this particular rally, members raised more than $400 for the Cincinnati Shriners Hospital, thanks to Ren’s pickiness and the generosity of the chapter members. “Those kids surely appreciate everything,” Ren said of the patients. “It’s an amazing service.”
FMCA members interested in joining the Barth International chapter should contact FMCA’s Chapter Services department.