THE GRAHAMS’ OF COCHRAN COUNTY – CHAPTER 66
I was ready to get back to school. Driving the trucks for Western Company was a dirty job and long hours. It was in December 1953 that several things happened to make me get back on track for my pre-med education. There was this incident where we were out on a job pumping acid chemicals down a well to frack the formations. I was driving one of 5 trucks hooked up to the particular oil well site and the foreman asked us to start pumping our acid down at high pressure. I noticed that the valve that went to the pump on my truck was closed so I got out of the truck to turn it on and as soon as I got back in the cab of my truck my windshield broke. I did not understand why until I saw the foreman cursing at me and he had no helmet on. In anger he had thrown that lethal weapon at me.
I had received notice that the Korean Veterans were now being included in the GI Bill. Before I started back to Canyon to start my pre-med, I decided to take a trip to the Rio Grande River some friends. I left their house late at night to return to Odessa and ran smack dab into a 7 point buck. My radiator was ruined and there was no way I could drive that car and I was about 50 miles from the closest community. I started walking toward Sonora. After I had walked about one mile in the pitch black there was a vehicle approaching coming from the same direction I was traveling. They say me and offered me a ride. The also had noticed my wreck and the deer. They had the deer across the hood of their car. They dropped me off in Sonora at a small hotel and the next morning I was able to phone my dad and let him know what happened. I took a fellow out to the wreck site and he hauled my vehicle to a shop and said it would be about a week before they could fix my vehicle. I caught a bus to Lubbock and stayed with my mom and dad at the drug store until the vehicle was fixed. They went the cheep route and put a used radiator in my car. Unbeknownst to me they had installed a radiator that had several of the water compartments bypassed so I was not getting the full cooling effect. This vehicle was as problem until I finally traded in to Leo Jarmon when Bob brought his Oldsmobile to Dallas to trade for a new car. I took the Oldsmobile and gave him this Ford Coup and we were all happy. The Oldsmobile did have a fluid problem with leakage from transmission and this had to be filled about every time I gassed up.
Dad was not to helped up about helping me to pay this Ford Coup out of hock. It was going to cost me 700.00 dollars and that was not small change. I was finally able to beg him out of the money by reminding him that I sent several hundred dollars home from Korea and Japan that was spent to help Janie out. He reluctantly gave me the money and I headed back to Sonora to pick the vehicle up. I drove the vehicle to Odessa and cleaned out my small apartment and said my goodbyes. I arrived in West Texas State in Canyon in time to enroll in the Spring Semester. With the GI Bill I could also afford to live in the dorm and by a meal ticket. Books and tuition were paid for by this GI Bill.
My first roommate was A. D. Britt. He was a pre-med student and studied all the time. He was very helpful with my chemistry course. Dr. Whaley sort of assigned him to help me catch up. My chemistry at Odessa Collage was lacking and I decided to retake it at WT. Gaylord Cook and Buddy Wilson were suite mates and I got to know them very well. They both attended functions in the Bible Chair. I also was reintroduced to Johnnie Pavlovsky and Rachel Maynard. I had to take some courses at Amarillo College because WT did not have them when I was needing to take them. I took about 22 hours that fall semester.