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Fayetteville History: Memories of Fayetteville High School


By: Weeks Parker

When I was a student at Fayetteville High School, it was located on Robeson Street where the Highsmith-Rainey Specialty Hospital now stands.
I fondly remember being a member of the FHS Band that was directed by George Tracey, who was the organist at the First Presbyterian Church. When I was in the ninth and 10th grades, the band members wore blue and white uniforms because those were the school colors.

Our second band director, Harvey Bosell, once had his own orchestra that was a part of the “Big Band Era.” He composed a marvelous march entitled “The Blue and White Blues.”

This song became so popular that we played it at every football game held in our large stadium behind our spacious school building that occupied an entire city block.
When I was in the 11th and 12th grades, the band changed from conventional uniforms to Scottish kilts. Some of the male students did not like the new uniforms, because a few of the girls in the band seemed to greatly enjoy pulling the boy’s skirts up to see what they were wearing under them.

Some of us liked to play popular music on our instruments as we traveled by rail to other cities, but our band director usually stopped us before we had time to finish playing. He did not like for us to play while we traveled.

When I was in the ninth through the 12th grades, I formed and directed the school orchestra. We played for school dances and also at Fort Bragg service clubs and for many other events including the University of North Carolina. We had the honor of playing at the Main Post Officer’s Club that was then directed by Leroy Anderson, a world-famous composer of many wonderful songs including “Sleigh Ride” that is still very popular during the Christmas season.

Our School Radio Station

In the center of our school building, the radio club, of which I was president for three years, had an amateur radio station whose call letters were W4MQW.
Several years after I graduated from Fayetteville High School, the name was changed to Terry Sanford High School in honor of the late Terry Sanford who was once governor of North Carolina. Although the name has changed, the school colors are still blue and white, and their football team is still known as the “Bulldogs.”
If you have ever been a student at either Fayetteville High School or at Terry Sanford High School, I am sure you are proud to have been a member of one of the finest schools in the state of North Carolina.

Our radio club was sponsored by V. R. White who was principal of the school. Mr. White often invited club members to visit him in his home at 1414 Old Fort Bragg Road where he had his own amateur radio station. His call letters were W4BPQ, and we were thrilled when he allowed us to talk to other stations as far away as Australia through his shortwave radio transmitter.