The Hickmans Have Impacted Cedar Hill for Generations


The Hickmans

Cedar Hill Alums Are Rooted In Cedar Hill Group

(CEDAR HILL, TEXAS) Traphene Parramore Hickman has some recommendation for the 518 members of the Cedar Hill Excessive Faculty Class of 2021 seventy-one years after she and 14 classmates accepted their diplomas from the district.

“The longer term’s simply on the market,” Hickman stated. “Take each alternative. Take each step. Go ahead, even should you’re afraid. Dwell for tomorrow and by no means look backward.”

Hickman, a 1950 Cedar Hill High School Graduate, and her husband, J.R. Hickman, a 1948 Cedar Hill Excessive Faculty Graduate, have exemplified these phrases all through their outstanding, civic-minded lives in Cedar Hill.

Traphene retired in 1996 after a outstanding profession because the Library Director for the Metropolis of Cedar Hill and later, for Dallas County, and J.R. retired from Southwestern Bell (now AT&T) in 1984, after 35 years of service with the corporate.

Traphene remains to be a member of the Cedar Hill Library Board, and J.R. is a member of the Cedar Hill Museum Board and a former election precinct chair for 25 years within the metropolis.

71 Years Of Marriage

They’re approaching their 71st wedding ceremony anniversary, and so they’ve raised their daughters, Laurie and Lynn – each CHHS graduates – locally. Laurie retired as Permenter Center Faculty’s Librarian.

The Hickmans have lived in the identical Cedar Hill residence since 1964 and proudly talk about their 4 grandchildren, 4 great-grandchildren and coming quickly, their first great-great grandchild.

“Cedar Hill is our life, it’s our household,” Traphene stated. “That is our metropolis. We adore it, and we love all the folks, and we love all the new folks. We attempt to meet as many individuals as we will. Our robust Christian religion has lots to do with our marriage lasting so lengthy. We’re respectable to one another, even once we’re mad.”

Witnessing The Development of Cedar Hill

The Hickmans met at First United Methodist Church in Cedar Hill within the late Forties when Cedar Hill’s inhabitants was roughly 800. It’s now roughly 50,000.

Traphene, 88, had simply moved to Cedar Hill as a high school sophomore. She’d lived in Oak Cliff the place the enrollment at her junior highschool was greater than double the inhabitants of Cedar Hill.

“I used to have the ability to take the road automotive to Truthful Park or wherever I wished to go, however I couldn’t do that when we moved to Cedar Hill,” Traphene stated.

Her household, the Parramores, relocated to Cedar Hill as a result of her father was set to retire as a Dallas Firefighter, and he wished to buy some land in what was the countryside.

Her childhood bed room is situated in what’s now the eating space of the TGI Fridays on North Clark Highway.

Whereas in the present day a visit from Cedar Hill to Oak Cliff is a fast jaunt on U.S. Freeway 67 – even when there’s site visitors – that wasn’t the case in the course of the mid-Twentieth Century.

Traphene misplaced contact together with her Oak Cliff associates as a result of speaking on the cellphone would imply ten cents per name (equal to $2 per name in the present day).

Church has at all times been a central a part of Traphene’s life. It was there that she met J.R., who’s a 92-year-old lifelong Cedar Hill resident.

The son of a sharecropper from Arkansas, J.R. was born in bottomland in what’s now the underside of Joe Pool Lake at Cedar Hill State Park. The physician rode into the agricultural space on a horse and buggy.

J.R. initially attended faculty in an space referred to as “Nice Valley”, which is the current day Lake Ridge neighborhood. His faculty was heated by coal, and he remembers classmates telling tall tales a couple of legendary “half individual, half goat” that lived within the Cedar Hill countryside.

Whereas ‘Bray’ and ‘Plummer’ are names that many Cedar Hillians hear as campus names however don’t affiliate with it personally. That’s not so for J.R.

Floy Bray was his first grade trainer, and Rosa Belle Plummer, his second grade trainer.

“They have been each very nice to the students,” J.R. stated.

J.R. has seen Cedar Hill make an unimaginable quantity of progress over the course of his lifetime.

“I’m proud to reside right here,” J.R. stated. “You see how easy the town runs in comparison with a very long time in the past. All you must do is drive by means of the town parks and see how neat and trim every little thing is.”

Cedar Hill Library Director Aranda Bell is in awe of the Hickmans’ contributions to the neighborhood.

“To know J.R. and Traphene is to like them,” Bell stated. “They’re part of the material of our day by day lives. Our communities have been blessed as they’re trailblazers, pioneers and servant leaders.”




Traphene had a dream that she would marry J.R., who on the time was engaged to be married to his boss’ daughter.

J.R. labored at Cedar Plumbing and Electrical as an electrician, earlier than the times when electricians have been licensed and licensed. In actual fact, he wired early houses in Cedar Hill – lots of that are nonetheless in use in the present day.

He met Traphene and the remainder was historical past.

J.R. was a standout basketball participant, who earned “silver basketball pins” each time he made the all-tournament workforce, which was usually.

Cedar Hill, now a soccer powerhouse identified close to and much, began a soccer program whereas J.R. was in highschool. They performed six-man soccer and didn’t register a single victory.

Traphene was a cheerleader in these days.

“The cheerleading workforce was new, so we listened to different faculties’ cheers as a result of we didn’t know any,” Traphene stated. “I wasn’t a sports activities individual, however I knew tips on how to yell.”

Along with sports activities and electrical energy, J.R. was amongst a bunch of Cedar Hill scholars to function faculty bus drivers whereas they have been enrolled in highschool. With World Warfare II, there was a scarcity of bus drivers, so youngsters resembling J.R. stuffed the void.

J.R. had enlisted in the USA Marine Corps Reserves whereas in highschool, and shortly after commencement in 1948 (in a category of 13 graduates), he was referred to as to an task at El Toro Marine Base in Irvine, California. Throughout his time within the army, he labored as a typist, having benefited from taking a typing class at Cedar Hill.

He went to work for Southwestern Bell after highschool and was assigned to Houston since there was much more work there than there was within the Cedar Hill space.

At Southwestern Bell, J.R. actually climbed the ladder, first as a lineman and installer, and later, as a repairman and specialised tools installer. By the point he retired in 1984, he had an workplace job in downtown Dallas as a Division Provide Supervisor.

The Hickmans exchanged wedding ceremony vows on June 9, 1950.

Traphene raised the couple’s daughters, whereas J.R. labored, however she had her sights on a profession.

As her youngsters bought older, she first earned an Affiliate’s Diploma in Journalism from what’s now Dallas School and a Bachelor’s Diploma in Political Science from College of Texas Arlington. Traphene went on to earn a Grasp’s Diploma in Library Science from Texas Lady’s College.

“I began school in my 30s and earned my Grasp’s Diploma in my 40s,” Traphene stated.

She labored as Cedar Hill’s Library Director from 1959-1976 and in the identical capability for Dallas County from 1976-1996.

“It’s so essential for folks to encourage their youngsters to learn,” Traphene stated. “It retains your thoughts sharp.”

J.R. determined to take a beneficiant retirement bundle in 1984, as a result of persevering with with Southwestern Bell would have meant relocating to Denver, and he knew how a lot Traphene cherished her job in Cedar Hill.

Shortly after retiring, J.R. labored with W.S. Permenter on rental property administration. Permenter went on to function CHISD’s Superintendent and Cedar Hill’s Mayor. He’s the namesake of Permenter Center Faculty.

Traphene made the choice to retire in 1996 after a detailed pal grew to become sick.

“We determined that if we have been going to journey the world, that was the time to do it,” Traphene stated.

And journey, they did. To locations that they may solely have dreamed about as youth in mid-century Cedar Hill.

Traphene was honored when the Library devoted the Traphene Hickman Outside Music & Discovery Backyard, exterior the Zula B. Wylie Library. It options life-sized musical devices for kids (and adults) to get pleasure from outdoor.

“I like seeing children play on the park each time I’m going out to the library,” stated Traphene, who was the March of Dimes Chairperson for Cedar Hill and a former chairperson of the Cedar Hill Chamber of Commerce.

She additionally served as Evangelism Chair for the First United Methodist Church and is a Grasp Storyteller.

Though they’ve lived by means of a lot American historical past, from the Nice Despair, World Warfare II and Polio to current day, the Hickmans admit that the COVID-19 Pandemic was a problem for them.

They’re each absolutely vaccinated now and are beginning to see family and friends extra usually.

“This has been the worst,” Traphene stated. “We’d usually play dominoes. J.R. often wins, however we saved enjoying. I’d win a recreation, however that may imply that he’s gained 10.”


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