The Story Behind the Images on Our Reunion Mug
During 1959-1960 the Oil City Grace Methodist Church sponsored an exchange student through the International Christian Youth Exchange Program. The Russell Buckham family, which included our Bob Buckham were selected by the church to be the host family.
Oscar Frohne, a 16 year old boy from Germany, was placed in their home.
While Oscar was attending OCHS, he was encouraged by Mr. Davis, the school art
teacher, to take up painting. According to Oscar, Mr. Davis thought he had some
talent in this area. Oscar followed his suggestion and painted several subjects,
but gravitated toward city landscapes painting various scenes around the Oil
Contact with Oscar was lost sometime after 1960 when he moved away from the small, German village where he was living.
Years later, through the magic of the internet and Google, Oscar was found living in Berlin. He is now Dr. Frohne, a metallurgist, with his own consulting business. Phone calls were made immediately and plans outlined. Within a few weeks Bob Buckham, Oscar and their wives were enjoying a Thanksgiving Day dinner together in an Italian restaurant in Antwerp, Belgium. They have continued to stay in touch with visits, emails and phone calls.
In early 2013, Bob was searching through an old backup drive when he discovered an email Oscar had sent years before with snapshots of the paintings he completed while living in Oil City. They were crudely laid out on a Berlin sidewalk and individually photographed. Bob had forgotten all about them. Upon their rediscovery, he shared them with a couple of classmates; Jane Jackson and Carol Thomas. The feedback was so enthusiastic that the three of them decided to do something with them to provide a tangible remembrance for all classmates attending the 50th Class Reunion. After several emails, phone calls, meetings, meals and untold numbers of cups of coffee the answer became apparent to them.
We hope you will enjoy your tangible treasure for years to come.
Oscar Frohne in 2014
An image of Oil City Senior High. Oil Creek looking North and the South Side Quaker State garage.
Worthington Corporation and looking North across the old State Street Bridge toward the St. Joseph church spires.