By Horace Dozier Times Staff Editor Friday, August 14th, 2009 DAYTON, OH. Roosevelt High School
This time last year, the demolition of Roosevelt High School was well under way. As we approach the anniversary of that historic monument in time, should we mourn our loss or celebrate the new birth of The Boys Rex Plex Center on this hollowground? Some might ask, how will the new center honor what has gone before it? Will the spirit of the ground hunt the new building like a kidney or limb transplant that rejects the host? Will we be able to look at this new modern structure and be able to welcome it into our family without comparing it to the past? Can Roosevelt’s spirit survive this makeover? For some of us may remember the last walk through celebration open house at Roosevelt in 2008, the songs, testimonials, announcements, special guest and love for the school was like an over flowing waterfall of emotions that could not be contained. It was a reunion for all of us, brought together by the spirit of Roosevelt High School. After the open house, a chain link fence was erected around the school and the first monument to fall was the Bell Tower, donated by the class of 1963. After that came the magnificent smoke stacks which were viewable for up to eight miles away. The upper decorative face was removed along with the great seal from the inside floor and stored for later use on the new building. Meanwhile, crews worked on the inside removing asbestos while gut-ting everything to produce a hollowed out shell. After which the outside walls were next on the chopping block. While the third street columns were being removed, found beneath the last stone was a time capsule from 1923. All contents have been digitized and archived for public viewing and is part of “The Roosevelt Historical Collection”. During the demolition, the construction fence was decorated with red ribbons and flowers by Alumni and friends, hosted by Sarah Hayes, President of the Roosevelt Alumni Association. This became a weekly activity until the school was completely torn down. Alumni fellowship and song was also part of the meeting and while it was emotionally devastating to see our school dismantled like a piece of discarded junk, Roosevelt’s glory, memory and spirit will live in all of our hearts and will never be replaced or forgotten. The demolition from start to completion was filmed and will be made available as a documentary to air on local channel 16 late next year 2010; copies of the documentary and the “Time Capsule” may also be purchased from “The Roosevelt Historical Collection” contact Horace Dozier 937-291-9620
The Roosevelt High School Historical Web Site is a work in progress and represents Dayton, Ohio's community heritage. This site and all of its contents would not have been possible without the help of many friends and organizations. We encourage you to visit this site often as it is constantly being updated.
Thank You The Roosevelt High School Historical Staff
to our latest re-make of the official historical web site for Roosevelt High School Dayton, Ohio. This web site was created to inform and preserve the history and spirit that existed at Roosevelt past and present. This landmark building was the finest High School built in the state of Ohio in 1923. Roosevelt’s curriculum included extensive vocational programs and was the envy of all other schools in the state.