Kokomo Tribune; Kokomo, Indiana

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January 25, 2014

RAY DAY: 'What a memory to have'

You know what? I feel great when my readers let me know they like my column and look forward to reading the next one. That is what keeps me going, like when I relate to you my early years and the things I remember about others, who grew up during those times so greatly embedded in my memory bank.

And it is really great for me to hear from the ones older than me who like to contribute their thoughts. The other day, I received a letter from a relative of Charles Sullivan, who wanted to give me some notes about Kokomo.

Charles — who was the man to see about bicycles, owned Victory Bike Shop, and always has been a good Kokomo citizen — wrote about the streets of Kokomo that had the names of people who made their way into history, such as Washington, Jackson, Monroe, Taylor, Jefferson, Carter and Lincoln. And streets named after trees, such as Maple, Oak, Plum, Poplar, Mulberry, Pinetree, Buckeye and Beechwood.

He wrote about the popcorn machine at the corner of Taylor and Main Streets, where you could get a bag of peanuts too. He remembers the Palace Theater, which was owned by Merrell Moore. He said Merrell would stop the film so that he could take care of the customer who wanted popcorn. Then he would start the reel back. Sort of sounds like our television commercials today.

Dukes Restaurant was at 112 E. Sycamore St., and Fox, Wood and Isis theaters were owned by Sam Neal at one time. And Charles remembers Montgomery Wards, which was at 122 S. Main St. He said the Whitley Family, who owned Colonial Theater, also ran the Putt-Putt Golf Course on the northwest corner of Foster Park. Charlie is residing at Waterford Place and you can send him a note or visit with him there. Charles has always been a friend I cherish knowing because of the way he conducted business and how nice he always was with his customers. He treated everyone with class.

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