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March 23, 1995

Kenneth and Donna Brengle have bought a home here at Seventh and Jackson and are moving back to Perry after an absence of 40 years. He retired more than 10 years ago from the faculty of Colorado State college and for the past four years the two have been living in Pagosa Springs, Colo. Donna's sister, Dorothy Hafner, lives in the Lucien community and their mother, Lillian Harrison, is in Green Valley Nursing Home. Kenneth's brother, Don Brengle, retired from the military a few years ago and has been making his home here for some time.

The two brothers are only 15 months apart in age. They have spent a lot of time trying to dispel an assumption held by many people that they are fraternal twins. "I was supposed to have been the last one," Don says, "but then Kenneth came along." The two are sons of the late Mr. and Mrs. Quine Brengle. The other Brengle son, Quine Jr., died a few months ago. The brothers also have an aunt living here, Mrs. Pat Brengle.

When Don came back to Perry, he bought the house on Seventh street where his grandparents, Dr. and Mrs. Dan Brengle, formerly lived. Don partly grew up there so he was pretty familiar with the floor plan. Dr. Brengle was one of those people that most old-timers remember quite well. He was distinguished looking, with a white goatee, always fashionably dressed, even in later years when he had more or less given up the practice of medicine. I remember seeing him wearing spats and a derby once in a while, so to me he was the epitome of a Dapper Dan. The thing that most of us remember about Dr. Brengle is his penchant for walking, and that was back in an era before walking just for exercise was popular. He used to stroll all over this town in good weather and foul, tipping his hat to the ladies and greeting one and all. He was also a loyal fan of the St. Louis Cardinals.

Quine Brengle Sr., father of Don and Kenneth, also was known to most people in this area, partly because of his smiling presence at a window in the Perry post office. Quine also was an officer in the National Guard Field Artillery unit here and was a veteran of World War I. Together with Frank Jones Sr. and George Butler Sr., he was part of a memorable team of local postal workers. There were others, of course, and someday we'll have to reflect back on all of them. But Quine, Frank and George sort of stick out in the memory of a lot of people.

Quine's parents were early settlers here. My grandparents, Mr. and Mrs. Alfred Bucklin, opened a very popular chili parlor on the north side of the square here in about 1902, and I grew up thinking that their world-class chili recipe had been lost before I was old enough to sample it. Then one day Quine told me that he used to hang out at the Bucklin eatery and that he knew all the ingredients used in their specialty. He passed the information along to my mother, who had never had the recipe. Years later, Marvin (Bud) Jirous asked mother to share it with him when he was getting the Sonic Drive-In chain up and running. As it turned out, the recipe was so complicated and required so many rare and exotic spices and seasonings that Bud decided it would not work in a fast food restaurant, so Sonic never used it. Our own homemade brand suited us OK by then anyway, and now, sadly, I can no longer eat chili, so Grandpa and Grandma's masterpiece has gone to that big chili cookoff in the sky.

So, here we are again, welcoming another family of returnees back to this community. It's nice to have the Brengles in Perry once again. We're glad to have you back.