Baldree shares stories from his younger days

Everyone knows Dub Baldree. In a couple of weeks he will be celebrating his 85th birthday. In his honor, I would like to share a “tale” from his past, told to me by him.

In about 1941, Dub was 13 or 14 years old, and was good friends with Junior Smith. They lived a few houses apart from each other on Kickapoo Street in Lipan.

When Dub went to his bedroom in the attic at night, he would crawl out the window and climb down a nearby cedar tree. He and Junior would meet in town, run around most of the night, then return home. Dub would climb back up the tree and return to his bedroom before dawn, unknown to his parents, Hilary and Pernie Baldree.

Junior’s dad, Lawrence Smith, ran the barbershop in the front room of his funeral home. This was located in the building where Neal Tipton currently has his computer business. Next door to the barbershop was Earl Gafford’s grocery store and soda fountain (now an empty store building). When Mr. Gafford received shipments of ice cream, they would be packed with dry ice.

Junior asked Dub if he wanted to go and catch a lot of fish in just a little amount of time. Of course, Dub said “yes.” Junior went into the funeral home and got a quart canning jar. Then he “borrowed” some dry ice from Mr. Gafford’s storage room.

Both boys went to the pond where Junior put water and dry ice into the jar. He screwed the lid down tight and started shaking the jar with the intention of throwing it into the pond where it would explode, killing the fish.

Well, he shook it “one too many times” and the jar exploded in his hands, embedding a large shard of glass in Junior’s neck. Both boys went to see Junior’s dad, who removed the glass. Dub told Mr. Smith that he didn’t know what caused that ol’ jar to explode in Junior’s hands! Boys will be boys!


Sincere sympathy to the family of Marie Sears McCloskey, age 86, who passed away Saturday, Aug. 31 in Carlsbad, New Mexico. She is survived by her husband Reid McCloskey, daughter Linda, sons David and Steve, children’s spouses, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, and a large extended Sears family.

Her great-grandparents, Allen Payne Bishop and Rebecca Bartlett Bishop, lived just west of Lipan and donated the land for Bishop Cemetery.


Jackie Shockley will have a birthday on Monday, Sept. 9. Thursday, Sept. 12 is Jodi Stowe Overton’s birthday. Happy Birthday ladies!


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