September 2021 Newsletter

The latest in our series…


Milt Clark


Dale Dauten

1922. Reading about it now, it sounds like a pretty good year. The Roaring Twenties were gathering speed as the post-war (WWI) economy boomed with the large-scale adoption of radios, cars, telephones, films and electric appliances. At the same time, the Jazz Age was underway and the Charleston was catching on.

Among those born in 1922 were Judy Garland, Carl Reiner, Stan Lee, Ava Gardner, Jake LaMotta, Betty White and… Silveridge’s own Milt Clark. (Photo below from Milt’s 98th birthday party)

We got to talk with Milt recently and we wanted to know if he remembered anything about the previous century’s 20s, the Roaring ones. He reminisced about being born and raised on a farm in North Dakota and then moving to Montana, and he recalled for us a few of the common hardships from those times: that they had to rely on lanterns before they had electricity and outhouses before indoor plumbing, as well as the classic hardship, the long walks to and from school on winter days. Milt chuckled as one memory came back to him, one that brought walking to school in winter and the outhouses together:

“It was over a mile into town and I had to walk to town to go to school. Walking home one really cold Montana day I realized I really needed the biffy. There was one along the way so I went in, took off my mittens, and went about my business. But the mittens fell in. And when I got home, my mother insisted that I go and find my new winter mittens. So I had to go back out. The good news was that everything was frozen and I was able to fish them out.”

And while the ’20s maybe weren’t roaring for Milt in North Dakota and Montana, the good news was that the Great Depression didn’t hit the Clarks as hard as it did other families. Milt’s mother, a single mom, had a career at the North Dakota Agricultural College, working in Admissions, and she was able to support Milt and his brother through the Depression.


Within a few days of graduating from high school in 1940, Milt went to work as a Redcap at the Greyhound bus station in Fargo. (His next door neighbor was supposed to start the job that day but decided against it, so Milt turned up in his place.) That would be the start of a 45 year-long career with Greyhound, although World War II interrupted it.

Milt enlisted in 1943 and eventually found himself driving trucks in Marseille, France. His timing was good – the area was already under the control of the Allies and eventually along came VE Day. Soon after, he got his redeployment orders: a 30-day leave, and then it was off to the South Pacific to join in the war against Japan. Once again, fortune smiled on Milt: “I got really lucky – before I got shipped out, the War ended.” (Below are photos from the Chicago Tribune of the spontaneous celebration of VJ Day.)

With the War over, Milt was able to return to his job at Greyhound, this time in Billings, Montana. He described his long tenure with the bus company this way: “I did everything but drive a bus.” He worked in Baggage, in the Ticket Office and in Dispatch, but the job he recalled most fondly was as District Supervisor with what he called a “road job.” Instead of being at a bus station, it became his job to visit over a hundred “commission agents” (the drug stores and gas stations who sold bus tickets and package shipments), starting in Minneapolis and then onto Green Bay with a territory throughout Wisconsin and Upper Michigan.

(Photo: A Greyhound station from around the time Milt joined the company. The one pictured was built in 1939 in Arkansas.)

Along the way – it was during the 1960’s – Milt married his second wife, Geraldine. (He had a brief first marriage while in the service.) He helped raise two daughters from her previous marriage and Milt has remained close to them both: “One lives in Portland,” he told us, “and she has me text her every morning to tell her I’m all right; and the other one lives in Laramie and she calls me every evening to make sure I’m still breathing.”


Milt has been retired longer than many people work, having retired back in 1985. His wife joined him in retirement in 1990 and the two put a travel trailer to work. They spent a lot of time in Texas, but also journeyed to Florida. “We were thinking we might retire in Florida, but we didn’t care for it.” So, in 1992, they tried Arizona. Milt said this about their relocation decision: “My wife wanted oil painting and I wanted ping pong and Silveridge had both. We tried it and liked it and stayed.” They continued to live in the travel trailer, spending summers on the road, but in 1997 settled into a park model. Milt lost Geraldine in 2016 but has stayed on in Silveridge.

One thing at Silveridge didn’t work out the way Milt planned: he came for the ping-pong but stayed for the softball. He spent 20 years on the team, 18 of them as pitcher. As he reflected back on those times, he told us, “There were days when I’d play two sets of tennis in the morning, then come home and change and go out and pitch a double-header in the afternoon.” He added, ruefully, “My knees still talk to me about that sometimes.” It was only when he turned 90 that he retired from the team, feeling that his reflexes were slowing down. The team retired his jersey and had one framed for him.

While Milt gave up softball, he still likes crossword puzzles, is a regular at the Legion Club and you’ll see him at Silveridge events – look for him October 4th for his next birthday party.

Smartwatches — A New Day is Dawning

by DuWayne Kloos, VP SCTC

In the July issue of Silveridge Sun I wrote an article entitled, “Using Smart Technology for Better Health” that was intended to help you know more about ‘wearable technology,’ or more specifically, smartwatches. I told you about the top seller, the Apple Watch, but failed to tell you that the Apple Watch coordinates directly with ‘apps’ on the user’s iPhone, and only on an iPhone. Android phones do not work with the Apple Watch. There are of course smartwatches that do coordinate with Android smartphones like models from Fitbit, Garmin, Samsung and others.

On August 11 Samsung introduced a new super high-tech smartwatch, Galaxy Watch4. It’s the first smartwatch to use a new operating system called ‘Wear OS’ developed cooperatively by Google and Samsung, and perhaps the first Android smartwatch to seriously challenge the Apple Watch. Not to be outdone, rumors & leaks began appearing about a newly designed Apple Watch series 7 that’s expected to be released around September 15.

Both of these happenings mean that indeed, “A New Day is Dawning” in smartwatches.

The price of an Apple Watch 7 with all health-related features is expected to remain about the same as their Watch 6 and starts at $399US. Both Samsung Galaxy Watch4 models have the same health-related features and are internally identical. Prices range from $249US to over $400US because of size and sophistication differences.

Both the Apple and Galaxy watches have a fall detection accelerometer sensor that coordinates with a phone app and issues emergency notification options if the wearer is conscious, and if not conscious can enable the victim’s phone to call for emergency help. Also, both Galaxy and Apple smartwatches can do an FDA approved electrocardiogram using the watch’s electrical heart sensor.

Other health-related sensors on the Apple Watch include heart rate, blood oxygen saturation and a “third-generation optical heart sensor.” The Samsung Galaxy Watch4 also has heart rate and blood oxygen saturation sensors, and features (according to Samsung) a new “BioActive Sensor that precisely runs three powerful health sensors—Optical Heart Rate, Electrical Heart and Bioelectrical Impedance Analysis so users can also monitor their blood pressure.”

Technical analyst Brian Heater states that the “Galaxy Watch4 is one of the few smart-watches that can truly go head-to-head with the Apple Watch 6. Like Apple is tied to the iPhone, the Watch4 is explicitly tied to the Samsung ecosystem. It’s not only the best smartwatch for Samsung Galaxy smartphone users, but there’s a strong case to be made for it also being the best Android-compatible smartwatch, period.”

The smartphone information above is typical of subjects discussed at our Silveridge Computer and Technology Club (SCTC) before the Covid 19 pandemic shut down all Silveridge activities in March 2020. SCTC remained in hiatus throughout last season.

SCTC Pres. Carol Folker and myself with the help of our Board of Directors are endeavoring to restart the club in the coming season. Residents are urged to watch for a meeting notice in the December Silveridge Sun when it arrives in their PO boxes. We are hoping that residents interested in staying current with technology—computers, tablets, smartphones, etc.—will help us “reimagine” a Silveridge Computer and Technology Club in which members eager to learn will also be willing to contribute their time and whatever talents they have to make this new SCTC successful.