When we first set up this school and I looked on the map and saw it was “just south of Colby, Kansas,” I was reminded of the John Denver song. For those of you who might also have parts of that song running through your head, here’s the lyrics:
I had an uncle, name of Matthew, he was his father’s only boy.
Born just south of Colby, Kansas, he was his mother’s pride and joy.
Yes, and joy was just a thing that he was raised on,
love was just a way to live and die.
Gold was just a windy Kansas wheat field,
blue was just the Kansas summer sky.
And all the stories that he told me back when I was just a lad.
All the memories that he gave me, all the good times that he had.
Growing up a Kansas farm boy, life was mostly having fun.
Riding on his daddy’s shoulders behind the mule, beneath the sun.
Well, I guess there were some hard times, and I’m told some years were lean.
They had a storm in ’47, twister came and stripped ’em clean.
He lost the farm, he lost his family, he lost the wheat, he lost his home.
But he found the family bible, his faith as solid as a stone.
So he came to live at our house, and he came to work the land.
He came to ease my daddy’s burden, and he came to be my friend.
So I wrote this down for Matthew, and it’s for him this song is sung.
Riding on his daddy’s shoulders, behind the mule, beneath the sun