Memories of a Lifetime: 1976-1980

1976 – We started the year of 1976 still working at Monroe Morning World. My wife was unhappy with her job and I found out there were two openings for my old job at Town Talk. So we moved back to Pineville, Louisiana at the Quail Creek Apartments off of Stilley Road in Pineville. It was good to be working in cold type again, after working with hot metal the previous two years in Monroe. My salary was $159 a week, when I left the Town Talk in 1974 and my salary had increased to $190 a week during the two years in Monroe. There were some negotiations with Town Talk personnel manager, who didn’t really want to pay the $190 salary, but I knew there was no way, that I would accept a cut in pay. He eventually agreed on the $190 salary, which totaled $9,880 for a year.

Can remember watching television that July 4, as the United States observed the 200th birthday since the Declaration of Independence.

1977 – We saw Elvis Presley at the Rapides Parish Coliseum in March. The seats were in the nosebleed section and we could barely even see Elvis, unlike our seats in Monroe, when we were on the floor, in about the 20th row from the stage. Elvis got sick that night and had to rest, while one of the backup singers sang a solo. We could tell that Elvis had gained a lot of weight, even sitting near the top of the coliseum, in seats that were the worst seats in the coliseum. Elvis didn’t even appear, at a scheduled Baton Rouge concert a couple of days later and was taken back to Memphis to Baptist Hospital.

We were watching the news on television in August of 1977, when we heard the news that Elvis had passed away. It came as a complete shock and it would be revealed later, that Elvis had a serious drug habit, that resulted in his death. This August marks the 36th anniversary of his death. Elvis would be 78 if still alive today.

1978 – My daughter Debbie was born on June 13 at 11:31 AM on a Tuesday at Rapides Hospital. We finally had cable television installed at the Quail Creek Apartments in 1978 and can remember being able to watch the Atlanta Braves on the WTCG Channel 17 superstation in Atlanta. We also were able to watch mostly Chicago Cubs games on WGN superstation out of Chicago.

1979 – We moved to our new home at 310 Burns Street in Pineville. I had remembered that house being built in 1958. The Louisiana College head football coach Les Patrick moved into the home. We lived across the street at 313 Burns Street, where we had lived since 1952. So it was like going home to live across the street from the house I had grown up in. So we moved into the house that had been built 21 years earlier.

1980 – Can’t remember much in the way of local news in 1980, but it was the year that John Lennon was shot outside his hotel. Other news that year included the election of President Ronald Reagan as he defeated President Jimmy Carter in the general election. Jessica Simpson was born in 1980 and will be 33, on the 10th of July.

A new Ford Pinto Pony automobile cost $3,910, while gasoline cost $1.19 a gallon.

United States boycotted the 1980 Olympics, because of Russia had invaded Afghanistan. Ironically, Russia left Afghanistan, while U.S. is presently in Afghanistan 33 years, after the Olympic boycott.


Author: Andrew Godfrey

Retired from newspaper work after 38 years. Had served in the Army in Hawaii and Vietnam in the 60's. Am now retired and living in Sulphur, Louisiana.

4 thoughts on “Memories of a Lifetime: 1976-1980”

  1. At least you got to see Elvis. I remember when he came to Milwaukee. I had chance to get tickets but I said, no, I will catch in when he comes back. He never came back, he died a short time later.

  2. Maryanne, It was exciting to see Elvis for the second time in three years after seeing him the first time. The local reviewer gave a very bad review of the show. It is amazing that he did concerts on two nights in the city of Alexandria, with a population of only 50,000. He had said back in the 50’s that he never would come back to Alexandria, when he sang at a rodeo arena and very few people showed up.

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