Thursday, November 22, 2012

My Father The Bowler

My father was an avid sports lover.  Growing up in the Detroit suburbs he had plenty of outlets for his love whether it were the Tigers, Lions, Pistons or Red Wings and he could be seen either attending the games, watching them on television, listening on the radio or doing both the television and radio at the same time.  I can still see him sitting in his recliner with the main television showing one game, a small portable television (very small) sitting on his lap watching another and the radio in his ear listening to a third game.

My grandfather told me that my father received his first baseball uniform when he was a teenager and he wouldn't take it off for days.  He loved playing baseball as a young boy but that quickly changed when he discovered bowling.  Bowling would continue to grip him for his entire life.

During my childhood and teen years I like to say that I grew up in bowling alleys.  Actually my father bowled in two men's leagues a week and then my mother and he bowled in a mixed league on another day.  Three days a week my brother and I had to accompany them to the bowling alley where I would sit and either read or do homework.  Guess the action bored me.

Today I was going through some old photos and found a few of my father related to his bowling.  He was an excellent bowler and in high school was predicted to be a champ.  He probably could have if he had pursued that but WWII came up and that changed young men forever.

When I was growing up our house was filled with bowling trophies.  Here is a photo of my father in approximately 1958 with his championship team at the time.

 Back Row:  Robbie Robinson, Mylen Schulte, Floyd Labuhn
Front Row:  William Machleit, Clifford Rupnow
Ritz Bowling Alley
Detroit, MI, ca 1958 

In approximately 1966 another championship for his team and my father is sitting with his trophy.  I believe this was from the mixed league he was in with my mother; why her photo isn't here I don't know unless she was taking the picture.

 Mylen Schulte with bowling trophy
ca 1966

But where did this love begin?  A few days ago due to the post of another genealogy blogger, I learned something new about my father.  Kristin of "Finding Eliza" had an excellent post about her mother in which she mentioned that her mother had graduated from Eastern High School in Detroit in 1940.  My father graduated from Eastern in 1941 and I sent off a comment to Kristin.  I follow her blog faithfully but never knew of our "Eastern" connection.  A few comments went back and forth and Kristin asked me if my father had been in any sports or activities at Eastern.  I told her he was an avid bowler and she graciously checked her mother's 1940 yearbook and found a photo of the bowling team of that year.  She scanned the photo and sent it to me and there WAS my father in the photo in his Junior year of high school.  This was a photo I had never seen of my dad when he was very young.

 Eastern High School, Detroit, MI
Bowling Team, 1940
Mylen Schulte back row, left side

This only shows again the kindness and generosity of our fellow genealogy bloggers.  Thanks Kristin!

Above photos personal collection of Cheryl Schulte
Copyright (c) 2012, Cheryl J. Schulte  

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