Old school sees new hope as community center

Published: Oct. 10, 2021 at 3:51 PM EDT
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CALHOUN COUNTY, W.Va. (WSAZ) - It’s been decades since the school in Grantsville was open but that is about to change according to community leaders in the town who are turning the old high school into a community center.

Roaming the halls of the school they once knew and telling stories of their mischief; the old Calhoun County High School collects dust but holds the memories of Lori Cobbett and her life long friends inside it’s walls.

“Here I was, my hand on my hip trying to explain my story,” said Cobbett. “Remember that one boy...”

The school has been closed for decades.

“This building that is what is was about was the children the kids and if we could bring that back,” said Cobbett.

Cobbett hopes to bring back a piece of what their school once gave to Grantsville and sense of pride and community.

Crystal Mersh walks the dusty steps intending to make a big change.

“When this school closed it really did something to the local economy,” she said. “This was the center this was the life blood of the community on Friday nights the place was abuzz.”

A donor gave a million dollars to renovate the old Calhoun County High School and Mersh is in charge of turning it into a self-funding community center for children and adults.

“The enthusiasm and pride in the community really touches my heart,” she said. “I was telling someone last week it reminds me so much of when we had homecoming here.”

More than 900 people came to the school on Saturday and waited in line to tour the place that kept their childhood dreams.

Now, they’re looking forward to filling the classrooms once again. The building is more than just the walls for many in the Grantsville community, it’s about future generations to come.

“The truth of the matter is we all come back as a family and that is where the kids will benefit is if this would do that for the children,” said Cobbett.

There is no set timeline on when the renovations will be completed.

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