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1974 (and 2013) - A Christmas Message From U.S. Rep. Ken Hechler
By Heath Harrison
December 8, 2013


Two light offerings for you this week:

First up, it’s a Christmas message from former U.S. Rep. Ken Hechler.

The “Citizens for Santa Claus” spot, courtesy of the Morrow Library archives at Marshall University, was recorded around 1974.

Known for his creative use of the medium, often incorporating props and costumes, Hechler taped several memorable television spots throughout his career, putting the Congressional studios to good use.

This clip ran in our longer compilation on Hechler’s life back in September, but is excerpted here to kick off our holiday offerings.

Hechler, 99, will be celebrating his 100th Christmas this year and sends the following message to our readers for 2013:

"I would like to take this opportunity to wish everyone a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year from me, my wife, Carol and our son, Josh."

We’ll have another look at Christmas Past as we near the holiday.

PHOTOS WANTED: Do you have holiday photos or video from our region's past? If so, feel free to get in touch with us via our submission form.

And in our second clip, we have a 1990 WCHS report from Alan Cohen that we came across in the WV State Archives at the Culture Center.

Born in 1890 near the end of the Victorian era, Mrs. Jessie Fiedler of Huntington grew up as automobiles were introduced to America.

She was 27 years old when her brother taught her to drive on a Model T Ford growing up in Uniontown, Pa.

When Cohen caught up with her 73 years later, she was still on the road at the age of 100 and driving a Buick Century.

"Driving is one of my pleasures in life," Fiedler told the Associated Press in an interview on her 100th birthday. "It keeps me young and interested in life.”

Mrs. Fiedler was proud of her safe driving record, and even had her insurance reduced at the age of 100.

NEXT WEEK We return to in-depth pieces with a look at a construction milestone and a date that changed travel patterns in West Virginia.

Remember When: 1974 (and 2013) - A Christmas Message From U.S. Rep. Ken Hechler

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