Another generation of Brown and Barrett runners 6.13

Written by David Green.

Thirty-one years ago, Morenci students Pam (Brown) Clifford and Jill (Barrett) Brown helped the Bulldogs win a state championship in girls track.

Earlier this month, it was their daughters’ turn to win medals at the state meet.

The women both reside in the East Grand Rapids school district and their daughters teamed up to win the Div. II 3200-meter relay race.

Jill’s daughter Nikki is a 2007 graduate. Randi Brown and Brianna Clifford recently finished their freshman year.

The girls didn’t just win a state championship; they also set a new school record of 9:29.

School records are nothing new for the two mothers. They set numerous records when they ran for Morenci.

Before you say anything about track being fairly new as a girls sport in 1976, and of course records were being set left and right, consider this: Pam Brown’s name is still in the Morenci record book for three events and Jill Barrett still appears twice. Those were records for the ages.

Pam’s school-record 5-foot-7 high jump at the state tournament is the event that gave Morenci the championship—it’s the only girls track title in more than 30 years.

In an interview in the Grand Rapids Press, the mothers were asked if they’ve put any pressure on their daughters to carry on the tradition.

“Not at all,” Pam said. “It’s been fun to see them take it up.”

Jill added that her parents, Jim and Pat Barrett, get a kick out of watching their granddaughters on the track.

“They say it’s just like when Pam and I were running.”

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    on your mark, get set, drum!—Drew Joughin (black shirt), Maddox Joughin and Kaleea Braun took the front row last week when Angela Rettle and assistants led the Stair District Library Summer Reading Program kids in a session of cardio drumming. The sports and healthy living theme continued yesterday with a Mini Jamboree at Lake Hudson State Park arranged by the Michigan Department of Natural Resources. Next week’s program features the Flying Aces Frisbee show.
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    Angela Davis (2) and teammate Allison VanBrandt break into a jig after Morenci's softball team won its third consecutive regional title.
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    ART PARK—A design created by Poggemeyer Design Group shows a “pocket art park” in the green space south of the State Line Observer building. The proposal includes a 12-foot sculpture based on a design created by Morenci sixth grade student Klara Wesley through a school and library collaboration. A wooden band shell is located at the back of the lot. The Observer wall would be covered with a synthetic stucco material. City council members are considering ways to fund the estimated $125,000 project and perhaps tackling construction one step at a time.
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    WRECKAGE—Morenci Fire Department member Taylor Schisler walks past the smoking wreckage of a semi-truck tractor on the north side of the Norfolk and Southern Railroad tracks on Ranger Highway. The truck trailer was on the south side of the tracks
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  • KayseInField
    IN THE FIELD—2004 Morenci graduate Kayse Onweller works in a test plot of wheat in Texas. She’s part of Bayer CropScience’s North American wheat breeding program based in Nebraska, where she completed post-graduate work in plant breeding and genetics.
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    BEVY OF BALLS—Stair District Library Summer Reading Program VolunTeens, including Libby Rorick, back left and Ty Kruse, back right, threw a dozen inflatable soccer balls into the crowd during a reading of “Sergio Saves the Game.” The sports-themed program continues on Wednesdays through July 27.
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