Marge Crossman Amherst High School Class of 1937
Yesterday Marge Crossman, a lifelong Amherst resident with a life longer than most, celebrated the 75th anniversary of graduating Amherst High School back when it was a stand alone schoolhouse only for Amherst residents rather than the Regional operation it is today.
Back in the early 1990s Marge founded the Amherst Citizens for Responsible Government a, gasp, conservative coalition of taxpayers concerned about wasteful government spending driving up property taxes and forcing long time residents to sell their homes.
The group would meet at the VFW on Main Street and numbered in the hundreds, mostly senior citizens (Marge was in her early 70s when she founded it) but a gaggle of younger upstart activists as well. The Amherst Bulletin once asked Town Manager Barry Del Castilho what his major concern was for the upcoming year and he replied, "Dealing with the ACRG."
Current residents will be surprised to learn the Amherst Regional High School $22 million renovation Override actually failed at the ballot box on the first attempt (1994), due to the efforts of the ACRG, who thought it was too big and of course too expensive. A few months later the town came back a second time and it passed, but a message had been sent.
I asked Marge yesterday what was most memorable historic event of her lifetime? "The bombing of Pearl Harbor," she replied--but then quickly added, "I had two brothers in the service at the time."
For us baby boomers who never lived through the horror of World War 2, the resounding answer would be 9/11. Let's hope when we hit "almost 93" that no other event will have surpassed it.
Izzy Lyman reports