June 2010

Blanche Hershey Revisits Twin Elms after 70 years
Houstonian Revisits Bandera Twin Elm Guest Ranch after 70 Years

Blanche and Alice met and became friends working at Foley’s in Houston.  They took the train from Houston to San Antonio and then took a bus from San Antonio to Bandera.  The owners of Twin Elm Guest Ranch at that time were Lewis and Dorothy Postard.  Blanch remembers how nice Mr. Lewis and his family were.  She said everything was new and very clean along with a very healthy feeling.  Blanche and the other guests visited The Bat Caves, rode horses and went swimming in the Medina River.  They went dancing as well and Blanche mentioned it several times with a sparkle in her eye…I think she must’ve danced with some handsome Bandera Cowboys.  Seeing the pictures of her and Alice when they were pretty teenage girls make me think they were very popular with the cowboys on the dance floor.

Later Blanche married a WWII Pilot named Herbert Lawler.  Mr. Lawler lost his life defending our country and Blanche remarried a Naval officer by the name of Paul Hershey.  Blanche and Paul raised two children, Susan and John Paul right here in Texas.

The way we found Blanche and Alice is exciting.  A young lady named Beth and her family came to Twin Elm as All Inclusive Guests.  While visiting and cutting up around the campfire, Beth told us that she runs a retirement home.  She was telling some of her residents that she was going to a dude Ranch in Bandera when Blanche spoke up and told everyone she had gone to Bandera as a young woman and reminisced about all of the fun she had there.  The next question that arose was naturally…What Ranch are you going to?  They blurted out Twin Elm Guest Ranch and Blanche immediately spoke up and said that was the ranch where she had visited also.  Blanche went into her room and gathered some of her most sacred pictures taken in 1940 at Twin Elm and shared them with everyone.

Beth brought some of the pictures to show us and we got so excited we could hardly wait to talk to Blanche.  We called and invited Blanche and her family to come back to Twin Elm Guest Ranch for a weekend of reminiscing and rekindled joy.  We then contacted Alice and she told several stories about the fun they shared together in Bandera 70 years ago.  Alice reflected names, dates and places like she was here yesterday.  Alice could not make the trip from Houston to Bandera this time for Health Reasons.  Alice is a spunky 93-years young, but her knees are not.  Blanch and Alice talked and sent pictures back and forth.

Twin Elm presented Blanche as the Official Rodeo Queen

Blanche and her family decided they all wanted to come to Twin Elm to represent the Duo! Thus, Cap’n Kury, Mz. Victoria & Zac, along with all the staff at Twin Elm started planning the big reunion.  It just so happened that the Summer Rodeo Season was going to kick off the same weekend they could come.

To the surprise of Blanche and her family, Twin Elm presented Blanche as the Official Rodeo Queen.  Mz. Victoria rode Blanche thru the arena on a decorated Golf Cart and in front of the Rodeo Crowd Victoria adorned her with the Rodeo Queen Sash.  While Cap’n Kury told Blanche’s story Blanche smiled from ear to ear and displayed the perfect Queen Wave.  A standing ovation and cheers filled the air with joy as she rode the arena with honor.  Blanche’s daughter Susan, her son John Paul, with wife Linda, were here to round out the perfect evening.

Blanche came to Twin Elm Guest Ranch in 1940 and returned 70 years later in 2010.  That my friends makes this old Cowboy and Twin Elm Mighty Proud.

Thanks for letting us share this with all of you. - Cap’n Kury & Mz. Victoria, Twin Elm Guest Ranch, Bandera, Texas.

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