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The Rolla Daily News - Rolla, MO
Take a trip down memory lane as bloggers Danny Batson and Gary Thomas recollect their experiences while growing up in the Chillicothe area. We hope our discussion starters, pictures, and articles will evoke your personal recollections of Chillicothe; we invite you to share your stories with all of us. So, let us discuss the days gone by and have fun!
Magic Blankets by Danny Batson
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About this blog
By Gary Thomas

Hi, I am Danny Batson (Knouse) and I am a lifelong resident of the Chillicothe area. I was born in 1951 and graduated from CHS in 1969. I took over my dad’s septic tank business that he founded in 1937. While I have been in every state ...

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Chillicothe: As We Remember

Hi, I am Danny Batson (Knouse) and I am a lifelong resident of the Chillicothe area. I was born in 1951 and graduated from CHS in 1969. I took over my dad’s septic tank business that he founded in 1937. While I have been in every state (except Hawaii and Maine), there is no place like home! I love taking pictures of old and unusual things and sharing them. There is beauty in everything, if we look for it. I have three Facebook pages filled with local pictures that may be of interest: “Where Has Danny Been,” Chillicothe Now,” and “Danny Batson”.

Hi, I am Gary Thomas and I was born just across from Central School in 1942. I graduated from CHS in 1960 and MU in 1964. After two years in Army, I completed a graduate degree at the University of Chicago in 1970. After working in software development for more than 40 years, I retired from Raytheon in 2007. I have an abiding interest in history and in researching past events, places, and people. My latest project is developing a history-based chronology for Livingston County from 1801-2000.

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My cousins, one sister and one aunt I grew up with in Chillicothe.
My cousins, one sister and one aunt I grew up with in Chillicothe.
By Gary Thomas
Oct. 18, 2013 1:49 p.m.



I don't know what I was about cousins, but when we got together in my childhood we told scary stories. I learned at an early age that being under my "Magic Blankets" was the safest place to be! It always seemed that the oldest cousin had the scariest stories.



The first time I heard the Golden Arm story, I spent months deep within my bedcovers. "I want my arm!" is all I could hear in my head as I laid there. I looked under the bed and in the closet before I got into bed each night. Sometimes, I would even open the drawers in my dresser. Then, I tucked the blankets under my feet and legs, pulled them up over my head, and tucked them under the rest of my body. If I saw even a glimmer of light, I re-tucked the blankets. I probably looked like a cocoon!



Mom always said I would suffocate under there. I didn't care, I was safe for the night and I couldn't wait until morning. When my parents stayed out late... now those were the scariest nights. I taught myself how to breathe really quietly when I heard a noise and I sometimes held my breath if the noise seemed closer. The only time I showed my face was when I broke wind and couldn't stand it! Though others laughed,  I really was afraid and I couldn't control my fear.



To this day I still sleep with the covers under my chin whether it is hot or cold. My wife asked me once why I slept like that and I had to tell her. I do breathe better with my head out as mom said I would! As I grew older and started spending the night with friends most of those fears went away. New fears of the real world became more relevant and began to steer my life. I suppose it happens to most of us as we go through life.



I have finally reached an age where my fears are handled differently. Fear of Death and Hell were everpresent as I reached adulthood. But at the age of thirty-three, I found something everyone needs to find. With it, there is a overwhelming Power in my life that now allows me to push fears aside. I thank my Saviour for it.



It truly is sad that we sometimes carry needless fears for so long in our lives. Looking back with today's knowledge, I think I would have been able to get past them easier. If I had known the truth as a child, my fears would not have led me down a few wrong paths as I grew.



All those scary tales from my childhood are behind me now. We now have so-called horror movies being created and available for mass distribution without end.  I do not watch them, it's not because they scare me; it's because they are just plain wicked. I can now live with my head out from under my Magic Blankets. The Magic I now have is within me...



DB

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