JOHN LAURY
Science
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I remember:
 
Mr. Laury was a kick.  I remember him showing off by doing a head stand on the front lecture table.   He began by standing with his feet on the floor, hands on the lab table and jumping up, working his knees onto the table then, some how, he was able to get his feet straight up in the air to the head stand.  How many teachers would try that one.
Don Long
 
I used to go out to Mr. Laury’s house and work for him. He was my biology teacher. I dug flower bulbs for him and was paid so much for each bucket.
 Jerry Robb
 
John Laury, my Chemistry teacher wrote in my album, "If you aren't late getting there you ought to arrive OK. Keep trying."
I guess he was right. I remember I was always late to Homeroom. Maybe the fact that he was massaging the football players had something to do with it. (HA)
Mary Hammond Eberhardt
 
 I enjoyed science and decided to take chemistry even though Mr. Laury was the instructor.   Mr. Laury and I had a run in four years before.   I'll tell you about that later.
 
The first day Mr. Laury looked straight at me and began talking in general terms about stupid, careless,  antics committed by some immature people. He never specifically mentioned our little "incident" or me by name but his stern glance in my direction soon dissipated any hope I had that my transgression years ago was forgotten or forgiven by him. I knew from that moment on I was a marked man and would be in his cross-hairs for the rest of the year. Because I needed to maintain my scholastic standing I studied twice as hard for his class than I did for any other. I was determined that when he called on me, as he often did, I would be ready with the right answer.  Or at least with an answer that was not too stupid!  And I would do the best I could on all of his tests. It helped that I enjoyed chemistry and I had a terrific, fun lab partner in Carol Dietz.
Shannon Jones
 
 
 
 
 
First Impressions!?
by Shanon Jones
 
I have two conflicting and very personal memories concerning Mr. Laury. Both are incidents that have come to mind as I prepared this page for him. Both with how I thought Mr. Laury regarded me.  One of those incidents was something that happened when I was an 8th grader and I am sure he thought I was a complete idiot. The other occurred when I was a senior and was without a doubt the most embarrassing thing that ever happened to me in high school but somehow elevated Mr. Laury's opinion of me.   And mine of him.
 
The first incident occurred when I was 13 and was driving to school.  That's right I was riding a small doodle-bug motor scooter to school. Without going into a lot of boring details I was an unlicensed, underage driver, but I had a permit to legally operate this motor scooter to and from school. Anyway, as I approached Southeast I carelessly cut across the street and swerved right in front of Mr. Laury's car.  I don't know what 8th grade class I had with Mr. Laury as the teacher but that morning I got an earful from him and learned the meaning of a new word "addlepated". A word that was repeated often in my presence. Needless to say Mr. Laury was not high on my list of favorite teachers at the time and I surely did not rank highly on his list of promising students.
 
 
 
 
 
 
Remembering the peanut brittle:
 
The main thing I remember about Mr. Laury's Chemistry class is making peanut brittle! I don't even like peanut brittle. Why did we do that? Was it some chemical reaction we were to demonstrate? Why not fudge, for heaven's sake?
     Carol Dietz Tefft
 
As for the peanut brittle memory - mom and I made some and I then went to the basement to do something.  When I cam back up it was sitting there - not yet turned over so I grabbed it to flip it as we had done in class. 
 
But, there was a problem in that we had poured it out in class onto something which was able to draw some of the heat out of the peanut brittle and we didn't have anything like that at home.
 
When I screamed mom came running in and pealed off the peanut brittle sticking to my fingers.  We only had one car so mom had to call dad to come home from work to take me to the doctor.  That wait was unbelievable.  I took a window fan out of the window and turned it so it was blowing on my hand as I watched blisters, taller than the thickness of my fingers, forming and felt a pain I had never felt before - nor since.
 
That evening, or the following evening, SE had a big basketball game at the Municipal Auditorium.  As I remember it, one could smell trouble brewing so some of us made our way to the basketball court floor.  Sure enough there was trouble and more than one person went after Kent Bryant.  I grabbed someone with my good left had and without thinking made a fist with my blistered right as I swung them around.  Luckily for me the guy did not take me out when I let loose of him, grabbed my right hand with my left and cursed.

Bill Daily

 
 
 
 
 
 
   In Mr. Laury's 7th hour chemistry class, Glenna Ellis was giving a report on chlorine. She stated that it was used in mustard gas, but not telling that it is very deadly
   Mary Louise Erickson asked what mustard gas was used for. Chub Mills popped up with, "You spread it on your bread."
 
 
 
 
Remembering the Water-Jet Gun:
 
One thing I learned in Chemistry class was how to make a water jet gun out of a piece of rubber hose and two clamps.  Simply clamp one end of the hose then push the other end of the thin rubber hose onto the water jet that we had in our sinks.  Turn on the water which made the hose expand like a balloon, clamp the end of the hose, at the jet,  remove the hose from the jet and start squirting.  Must have done this all when Mr. Laury was out of the room
Don Long
 
One morning I got into Laury's class early to make a water gun with 2 clamps, a piece of hose and a blow pipe.  I took it to the railing on the third floor to fire down on various people as they tried to come up the stairs.  When there was a break with no one trying to come up I got primed for the next head to appear.  It did and I fired.  As the water left my blow pipe all I could do was say "aw shit"  - as the water was going to hit George Powell between the eyes.
 
Don't know how many had the pleasure of having George grab the skin on your side, slightly above the belt, and twist it so you rose to the tips of your toes and just went wherever he led.  I don't remember the outcome, but will always remember walking on my tip toes from the third floor to the office.
Bill Daily
 
 
 
 
 
The Lasting Impression!
by Shanon Jones
 
 I took Chemistry our senior year -- Mr. Laury's class.  The incident that took place four years earlier was in both of our minds, I am sure.
 
About the end of that first semester an incident happened that changed our opinions of each other. Or at least how I thought Mr. Laury regarded me. And it certainly eased my tension to know he finally looked upon me with something other than utter disdain.
 
A slight digression here; as some of you might remember I was the drum major of the band our junior and senior years. Shortly before the last football game of our senior year, Mr. Markley had me fitted for a new drum major's uniform. I had outgrown the previous uniform and it was time for a new one anyway. The biggest difference in the new outfit was a taller hat with a very large plume on top. Larger than the plume on the previous flat cap-like drum major's hat. What has this new uniform hat to do with Mr. Laury and me and my most embarrassing moment in high school?  I'll tell you.
 
On the night of the final game when our Southeast team became the  Interscholastic champions I had the honor of moving our band from its previous position on the field to a new place directly in front of the grandstand where the Southeast fans were seated. Now the way you signal the band to stop and start marching is with a series of short whistle commands and swift, exaggerated movements of the baton. As the band came into position I raised the baton above my head and blew one whistle blast which is the "get ready" signal. Then I bought the baton backwards behind my head and then quickly downwards in front of me as the whistle "stop command" was blown.  Of course, when I brought the baton backwards behind my head I forgot about the taller plume and knocked my hat off. The moment I did it I could hear the laughter in the stands. There was nothing I could do after the band stopped but do an about face, look directly into the stands, and with the end of the baton nudge the hat off the ground and flip it up into the air and into my free hand.  Thankfully it did land in my hand. I know my face was as red as my drum major jacket but for some reason I did a short bow to the stands, then did another about face, put the hat back on my head and signaled the band to begin playing a march. It was the longest piece of music of my teenage life. I was humiliated by my own stupid carelessness and wanted to hide someplace. But, of course, I had to stay there and act as if everything was going as it should be.
 
The next school day I was sure I would be the butt of everyone's teasing.  But no one said a word about my blunder. Except Mr. Laury.
 
I was expecting him to make some wisecrack about "addlepated" behavior while giving me one of his famous mocking scowls. Instead he began the class that day by telling us about what he thought was the true test of a man. He said anyone can be a hero when everything is going as planned. But the test of true character is how one performs under pressure and how well one can do his job in the face of adversity. He added, staying calm and doing what you need to do in the face of derision and taunting by your peers takes real courage. I'm sure no one in that class had a clue what the heck he was talking about or why. My face was so red I barely looked up enough to see him as he concluded his little lecture. He had been looking out the window as he spoke, but as he turned he looked in my direction and gave me a slight a nod.
 
I have never forgotten that moment. I can only paraphrase his comments but the look in his eyes I will remember forever. After class, as I passed by him, he leaned forward and told me he was proud of me and was glad to have had me as a student.  Actually, what had seemed an humiliating experience at the time seems very insignificant today … it only brings a grin. But Mr. Laury understood what it must have meant to a self-conscious teenage boy to screw up in front of hundreds of his classmates and he did his part to make that kid feel better about himself. 
 
Of all the people who have influenced me before or since, I do believe Mr. Laury was one of the four or five Southeast teachers who have had the most lasting impact on me. My empty teenage mind must have been most impressionable at that point in time and a willing receptacle just waiting to be filled with what they had to share.
 
 
 
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