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History of CAHS colors

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Tuesday, May 11, 2004

Dear Editor:

Last week in the 'Speak Out' column, there was a reference to the Connellsville Area School District colors. Here is some background information.

For the 1966-67 school year, Connellsville Joint and Dunbar Township High schools merged to form Connellsville Area High School. The year before the merger, there was a student/faculty committee formed, comprised of members from both schools. The purpose was to help make recommendations for new school colors, the mascot, etc., and I served on that committee as a student.

As I remember it (has it been 38 years?!), we talked about many, many possibilities. One thought was to keep the common color of both schools (black), and eliminate both orange and red. After much discussion, we seemed to be settling in on black and gold. As for the mascot, a final contender was the Cougar. "The Connellsville Cougars" was sounding pretty good.

Then Stan McLaughlin, who was coming from Dunbar Township, had a suggestion. It was to think about a totally new combination and consider the brighter look of blue and white. Coach McLaughlin was a colonel in the Air Force and blue and white were the colors of the Air Force Academy. To make a long story short, this appealed to us. As for the mascot, he mentioned the Falcon, which was also from the Air Force Academy. We were on a roll, and our victory march would eventually be taken from the trio of the Air Force Academy fight song. Please let me make it clear that Coach McLaughlin did not pressure us or strongly 'lobby' for these choices. He brought them up as suggestions, and the committee liked them (Incidentally, I remember he would sometimes be called out of school to fly missions to Vietnam).

As for the Alma Mater, as I remember, it is an original composition by Ron Scott and Robert Munden, who were the band and chorus directors at the time. When the current high school was built, the first stanza was simply changed from "Hail our high school on the hill..." to "Hail our high school in the vale ..."

Don Witt

member of CAHS Class of 1968



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