Information on the Web Master
Sid Gates (Newton High-Class of 1950)
I was born in Newton, Ks in 1932. At about 3 years old we moved to Hutchinson, Ks for a short time and then on to San Bernardino, Ca. Next we moved to Wichita, Ks. in 1939 and I went to 1st grade and through the middle of the 4th grade in Wichita.
In Feb, 1942 we moved to Cassoday, Ks. (population 150). I graduated from the 8th grade at Cassoday. My parents sent me to high school in Newton to take advantage of a broader and more diverse curriculum. That move gave me one of the greatest opportunities of my life.
I was invited to try out for basketball at the end of my sophomore year. I had the opportunity to learn the game under the best coach (John Ravenscroft) I ever played for. I was a starter on the Jr. Varsity team as a junior and made the starting five on the Varsity team as a Senior.
Newton High School basketball provided me with a choice of three colleges to play basketball with a full scholarship, I choose Wichita University. At Wichita I enrolled in Air Force ROTC to serve my country and fulfill another passion, flying.
In March 1955 I was inducted into the Air Force as a 2nd Lieutenant and spent the next 13 months in flight training. I received my Pilots rating at Greenville, Ms. May 1956 (class 56N). Next was advanced flight training in Valdosta, Ga. transitioning to the F-94C all weather interceptor.
My permanent assignment was with the 27th Fighter Interceptor Squadron at Rome, NY from Sept 1956 through Dec 1958. The Air Force then decided they had too many pilots and gave us the option of signing indefinite or getting out early.
I felt I had a good opportunity in the construction business in Newton building houses with my father-in-law, Luther McJilton. The housing market collapsed within the first year so I took a job in Kansas City selling electronic components for an importing company.
A year later while on vacation in Denver I obtained a position with Honeywell as the head buyer of electronic components.
After seven years with Honeywell I struck out on my own with Royal Electronics, then Tech Industries Inc and have been self employed since 1967.
In April 2000 I closed my office, semi retired and have worked part time since then from my home office as a computer consultant.
Starting in 1998 I had the opportunity to work with two of my high school classmates. First with Merle Block doing the video editing of a story Merle wrote for our 50th class reunion. That was an emotional, educational and rewarding experience.
When we finished the 50th Reunion video I told Curt Buller I would help him with his book "Can't You Hear the Whistle Blowing?" about Newton High School Basketball for the years 1914 through 1958 plus 1979. Curt needed help with the page layout using QuarkXpress publishing program. We were fortunate to get Don Bafus (class of 53) involved or we might still be working on the book. The book was released Oct. 5, 2002 and is now out of print. An eBook was released April 2008 and is available on this web site.
While working with Merle, Curt, Phil Anderson (class of 51), and others I have become aware of some of the very talented authors, artists, athletes and contributing citizens that are alumni of Newton High School. One of my goals on this site is to publicize their efforts and talents.
Sid Gates (2004)