The El Dorados

This Remembrance from Kristen Rice Wakefield

Early Hawthorne Years
I lived in the middle of 142nd St in HollyGlen at 1148, now 5448. Our closest neighbors were the Hale's, Johnston's, Bowers, Hildebrandt's, Frederick's, Harrington's, Pat's, Deals, Evans and Hoodward's. My dad, Jack, was the State Farm Agent on El Segundo Blvd. with his partner Cecil Zumwalt, (Denny, Bruce (who passed away about 10 years ago in Tahoe, CA), and Jeff's dad.) My mom, Janet, was the best, and still is! Every Monday night my mom stopped at Green's Farm for their hot barbecue beef and sheepherders bread, cole slaw and Pepsi. It was take-out dinner night before my folks left to play volleyball at Holy Park Auditorium with the YWCA group for about 10 years straight. I learned to swim in the HHS baby pool in 1956-57 along with most of the neighborhood. Until I won the privilege of riding my bike to the beach, I enjoyed those 10 cent afternoons with all my heart. I learned to do swan dives off of that great diving board, jack-knifes off of the platform and belly-flops off of the 12 foot high board. Boy, I can still feel the searing pain and gross embarrassment of those futile attempts at flips. Never again, I never did! I used to throw fast-balls to Mr. Hoodward after he'd come home from work at the Paul Hoodward Real Estate office on Inglewood Ave. Patricia Mann was my dad's secretary and revealed years later that while I threw fast-balls, my brother learned how to bake cakes and caused our dad much mental turmoil. Our street lacked girls my age for quite a few years, so I became an acceptable quarterback in our street football games. For a real game we'd go over to Peter Burnette for some tackle football. I could give as good as I got. The neighborhood doors were always open, the morning coffee always brewing, and the mom's were almost always at home. The Yuban coffee rata-tat-tat was never far away. The summer's saw the 142nd St. kids wearing hand stenciled white T-shirts with our teamname -the Tiger's-riding bikes to the east, one day a week to Hawthorne Bowl; and, swimsuit clad with towels around our necks heading west to El Segundo Beach two days a week, knowing that we were just fine and nobody worried about where we were, how we rode there or what we did as long as we made it back home by five o'clock for dinner. On the days we stayed home, my mom would put out a red triangular flag that meant all of the kids in the neighborhood could come over to swim with a parent or guardian or not. I used to walk to school every day to Peter Burnette and then R. H. Dana with Diane Nezgoda and Theresa June. Theresa used to run home with me every afternoon to watch part of "The Thin Man" with Peter Lawford and part of "The Private Eye" with Craig Stevens. I really did like older men! At Peter Burnett I ran with Kirk Meyer (still my best bud since Kindergarten), Larry Metzler, Lee Dale, Steve Westphalen, Danny Cook, Glen Travis, Joey Spencer and Billy Vazquez (my 4th.-6th.grade boyfriend). I used to ride Billy home in my big basket on my Schwinn bicycle- and no one ever made us stop doing it. Today we'd pay a big fine and the bike would be impounded. His mom taught me how to make tamales. I also did most of the homework for the guys (Kirk, Larry, Lee & Steve) when it came to group study. We joined forces in the 4th grade and mowed lawns, washed cars and baby-sat for money to pay for some really nice presents for Miss Charlton's wedding. Remember the pointed frame clock's so popular back then? Thanks to my mom, we also got to attend Miss C.'s wedding in Culver City, where she became Mrs. Broderick. Small world that it is, my family and I ran into the honeymooning couple in Idaho, outside a restaurant, with no prior knowledge of where they were staying. My brother Jack (1970) was my friend and foe. One day at Dana Jr. High, I was taking a note for the Principal to one of the teacher's. Yes, I was the good kid. The new Spanish teacher, from Cuba, I believe, was screaming at someone in his class. The next thing I knew a door flew open, a kid flew out and when the door slammed shut, my brother Jack was settling himself down on the steps of building #8 amidst the broken glass of a now shattered window. He casually looked up, and with a huge grin, said " Hi, Kris!" When I turned 13 my brother and I went off to camp in No. CA for a whole month. When we returned our parents couldn't find the words to tell us that our neighborhood was under a curfew and had restricted movement due to an event called the "Watts Riots." I remember dad had to show his driver's license to get past the guards on Rosecrans and Isis. It ended soon a few days later. Jack and I had been blissfully ignorant. Patricia Mann, Cris Mann's mom, was our Girl Scout troop leader along with Debbie Frank's mom, Gloria, and Debbie Swanson's mother. I knew my tomboy days were over when one night at a mountain cabin, after Mrs. Frank yelled up to the 2nd floor, at about 12 of us chattering Girl Scouts to quiet down or she'd put several of us next to each one of the six chaperone parents- I yelled back- "I'll take Harry!" (Mr. Swanson). Even the parents couldn't stop laughing. In the 7th grade I invited Mr. Plotkin and Mr. Ziff (Dana J. H.) over for afternoon tea. My mother was most accommodating as official hostess, and little did I know then how gracious these favorite teachers were to accept. Perhaps it was because Mr. Plotkin wrote on my Report Card, "Kristen turns in all of her homework, pays attention in class, is very conscientious, but fails her tests." Math was my nemesis then, but has become more friendly over the years, thanks in large part to Mrs. Adkins, (HHS) who showed me things backward can be understood by some better than others. Also, I wanted to graduate early so I could register in January for El Camino J.C., and Mr. Barton said, "Only if you take Algebra II and pass with a B or better!" Psychology is a marvelous tool if used well. Bribes were not a topic of that era, but I figured a couple of homemade Lemon Meringue pies couldn't hurt my chances of securing a passing grade. He loved the pies, I got a B+ on my own,and Marc Tucker stayed between me and Jack, who sat menacingly behind me, throughout the semester and would taunt me with reminders of my numerical deficiency. Between Jr. and Sr. HS I was an avid team player with the HolyGlen Park Girl's softball team. Janet Mercurio, Sherry Crow, Pauline Spencer, Nancy Akin and a few others whose names have drifted from memory, and I were a tough team to beat under the sharp eye and tough stares of Coach Kessler, Coach Frank, Coach Pat and Coach Mike Sloan, an HHS English teacher for many years. A lot of our Nght Games were played at Holy Park. One of our teammate's, named Sharon, was married to a nice guy who became a Marine, went to Vietnam, fought in the jungles and because he was a wiry little guy- he became a "jungle rat" (guys who snuck through the Viet Cong's vast tunnel system). He fell on a pungi stake pit, had major surgeries over many months, came to Mr. Baxter's Speech class and showed us his war wounds, told us his harrowing tales of wartime survival, and let us know in no uncertain terms that he was going back as soon as he could run 5 miles with a full backpack, while smoking a cigarette. He was my first real reality check on life. HS years brought Anita HARMON Bell, John Bothwell, and Cheryl CARTER, who later became Rod Todd's wife, and to our block. Now Anita lives probably fifteen miles from me, in Sacramento, CA, but we only e-mail, promising to get together when we can. Kathy SALISBURY Hunn, Richard Gray and Ed Strange have all crossed my path here in Sacto. Theresa JUNE Sharrock left here about 10 years ago for Idaho, to raise her second family of two girls. Unfortunately, dear Theresa passed away in June of 2011. But, in my heart and my mind's eye I can see & hear her & I am happy. Kathy spent some time in Mississippi with her church group helping the Hurricane Katrina victims. Kathy says she'll never be the same again. Tim Petersen was a constant visitor at our home as Jack's friend in H.S. Debbie REID Elliott was at my house when I wasn't at her house. In later years, Tim became unofficial "Uncle Tim" to my boys, Rob and James, and they were devastated, as was I, when he died way too young in 1990. Marc took over Uncleship and the boys enjoyed lots of guy things with him through their teenage years. Debbie is now a grandmother of 10, still hangs with Lupi DOMINGUEZ Perkins and Pauline SPENCER Matthews, and is still my very best friend. On the first day of H.S. when walking out toward the tennis courts, Gary Beaird said, "Hey, Kris, let's see you catch this. He threw a hard "Beaird spiral pass" and I caught it. But I knew my football days were over. They soon were replaced by "fencing with Mr. Williams "and GAA. Most Cougar folk don't know that HHS. took a 2nd in the Western States Fencing Tornament in 1967. It was a joy to hear Gary's voice at our 40th. Reunion, and we spent some special time together reliving the "best years of our lives." Sadly, Gary passed away the following year, but John Sloey was with him at the end, being the true friend he has always been. In my freshman year, at our first "Backwards dance" I asked Jon Sloey to be my date. He declined. It wasn't until our 25th Reunion that I reminded him of that event. He most graciously stated, "Tonight, I'm yours." We had a long and happy chat about day's gone by. As for Kirk Meyer, my buddy since Kindergarten at Cabrillo, he still hasn't signed my yearbook. Now, if only I could find it- it's the one with the Beach Boys at our Prom! Life goes on, CRUISE Night's come and go, but I often count my blessings for the many happy memories of Hawthorne, and a life that now seems very surreal. And God Bless Harry Plotkin and The Beach Boy's!!

Kristen Rice Wakefield HHS69

This Remembrance from Lucy Wong Leonard Class of 1979

Taco Tio and Victory Laundry
In the 60's, Taco Tio was a fast food stand located on the corner of 126th and Hawthorne Boulevard in Hawthorne, California in the Los Angeles county. It was a popular hang out for young people. They had the finest-grated cheddar cheese on top, stringiest shredded lettuce, tiniest chopped tomatoes and the greasiest ground meat inserted on the bottom inner, crunchy shell. Now, it is considered a historical site even though there is no picture of it. At the time, I am seven and how I got to know this place.
In the mid-60s and when everyone went home after working all day, Dad, May, Suzie, Lou Lan and I were left working in our Chinese Laundry named "Victory" on Hawthorne Boulevard. At the time, many Chinese immigrants like my parents could not get jobs, so they operated their own business. They could not speak or write much English.
Even though my little brother Billy was born then, Mom took Phillip, my oldest brother not diagnosed autistic yet, to learn ESL, English as a second language. It was taught at Lawndale Adult Education night school twice a week. Lawndale is the next town to Hawthorne not too far. When everyone went home, Dad still had to work until 2 in the morning.
When all the businesses around us closed for the day, we felt scared without other people around us. Another thing making us nervous was the back door and window left open for ventilation. Someone bad could have come in easily and hurt us. We did not have air-conditioning, swamp cooler, or any portable air unit besides fans moving the hot and humid air around. Often, customers would comment, "Isn't it hot in here?"
From the alley and parking lot, the back door was the entrance to the last room, where Billy, our youngest brother, who was barely one year old slept on a cobalt blue velvet, Victorian sofa with golden brass buttons, left there by a former tenant. Walking passed this room, it lead into the smelling toilet next to a big sink. From there lead into an L-shaped hallway to a small kitchen adjacent to the boiler room.
Being an unsafe structure, we never had a fire. About every 30 minutes, Lou Lan and I took turns going back to make sure no one stole Billy in the back. This odd shape building made for poor air circulation, even with the back door and window open. This room had an empty refrigerator with nothing in it to eat.
Not having Mom and Phillip to share the workloads, my Dad being too busy cleaning dirty laundry, my sister Suzie who is fifteen had to find some dinner. Suzie took any spare change left in customers pockets, or coins from the cash register to get enough to buy tacos from Taco Tio. Suzie counted the change and said, "We have enough to buy one taco for each of us." Then she came toward me, "Lucy, here is the money. Now go get them."
Suzie gave me the money mostly coins wrapped in blue paper, which was used to wrap fresh laundry. About 6:30 at night on Hawthorne Boulevard, I was afraid walking alone without someone older than me. Heading south two blocks, I hurriedly arrived at the fast food stand and requested, "Five tacos." The order clerk, a young man in his 20s, did not see me. Now standing below the counter and on my tippy toes, he could only see my black hair and asked, "Five?" He was probably an El Camino College student in Torrance who was working his way up to a better position. I never knew his name but he would remember me later.
When he handed me a white lunch bag with the tacos inside, I was speechless and shy and turned my head away. I grabbed the bag and quickly walked back to the laundry, and I gave everyone one taco, which were eaten in minutes, and then we all went back to work. It was like yesterday, I can still remember how delicious it tasted. I have never had another fast food taco that came close to Taco Tios.

Lucy Wong Leonard HHS 1979

This Remembrance from Gerry Brassfield Class of 1964

Memories of 1950s Hawthorne
My recollections go way back to the 50's, specifically 1950 to 1955, which made me as only 4 to 8 years old at the time. After that, we had to move out from the L A Basin because of the smog, which gave me constant Broncitus so bad that I had to take second grade over again at Hawthorne Christian School. My last teacher I had there was Mrs Duckett, who taught 3rd grade, in '55. I had to leave in the middle of it to move to San Bernardino for my health.
I remember my neighbors when I lived on Oxford Ave, just south of Broadway and just a half a block from the train tracks. We lived in the newest house on the block because my dad built it in 1950. Just two doors up from us were the Webber girls and their brother Dale.
Anyone remember Donna and Linda Webber? They might have graduated from Hawthorne High in the mid 60's....'65 maybe for Donna, later for Linda, and much later for Dale, I guess. Across the street were the Graves, a much older couple than my parents, they had gray hair! Down the block and around the corner to the east was a house that had a big old steel boat in the yard that someone had started building, but I do not think anyone ever finished. I got picked up to go to Hawthorne Christian School right in front of my house, which had the three numbered address of 225 Oxford. Now I think it is re-numbered in the 12400 something block.
I remember going to the Wonder Market with it's open air front and fruits and vegetables near the front, and across the street some drug store whose name I forget. It seems just half a block east of Hawthorne Blvd on Broadway was a big park in the middle of the street we had to drive in a circle around. I remember a doctor we visited frequently on the north part of the outside of that circle, but the name escapes me. And yes, I remember hiding in the bushes near the tracks after putting some coin or rock or can on the track to see what would happen to it when the train ran over it. I remember the planes flying low over our house while either taking off or coming in for a landing over at Hawthorne municipal airport. I believe that was the name of it.
It's too bad I never got to attend HHS, I'm sure it would have been a blast, what with the Beach Boys attending at around the same time.
It's really too bad I never got to hang out with the people that I have read about on this site. Hey I might have known some of them at all the hangouts that I missed. I might have even known some of the guys who had to go to Vietnam and never came back. Hawthorne really stands out in my mind for only the small amount of time I was there at so young an age. Would there have been the same type of car clubs there as there were in Berdoo? Inland Vans Berdoo, The Shifters, The Crankers? Would there have been more surfers there than greasers? Berdoo had its' fair amount of greasers, of which I was one, but would the change in status have made me a surfer of Hawthorne? Who knows? Hang in there, fellow babies, as Johnny Fever of WKRP in Cincinnati used to say.

Gerry Brassfield SBHS 1964

This Remembrance from Eric Larson, Class of 1970

Memories from Childhood
           After reading the reflections of others that grew up in the South Bay I thought I'd make these contributions.

I grew up in a very modest 2 bedroom house in Del Aire with a little wooden structure that housed the water heater and spiders and children hiding while playing hide and seek and a one car detached garage. We knew the neighbors by name. The Tangers lived in the oldest house in the neighborhood, it was so old that they still were able to have horses and owned two. No one else outside the immediate area knew where Del Aire was and people who lived there didn't know exactly either. We had an Inglewood postal code (code 2) long before zip codes. I remember hearing many grown ups comment that the zip code idea was a Commie plot. We also had a Hawthorne phone prefix (old wired phones had letters associated with the 10 digits). Our prefix was OSborne. Do you remember yours? We never knew if it was best to say you were from Inglewood or Hawthorne. Since the 105 freeway devastated the neighborhood and all those families and friends I guess now it doesn't matter.

The memories of the senses I remember from my youth include these.

My sense of smell memories of youth include the smell of smog, of El Segundo's treatment plant on rare days when the wind was onshore, the smell of the incinerator when dad would burn the weekly trash in the back yard, Jade East and my mom's perfume, the way the laundry would smell so fresh because mom hung it on a line in the back yard to dry. When we drove near the Frito plant in Westchester I remember the smell of the oil cooking the chips. I remember the smell of the fresh towels when I was spending PE in the "towel cage" and patchouli oil perfume that girls would wear or the Mimeographed copies of tests we were handed in school. The best smell memory was my mother's potato salad. I still can't make a batch without thinking of my youth or her.

In my youth I could hear the jets take off from LAX, especially on hot summer nights. We had all the windows open because we didn't have A.C. and it took more power for the jets to take off when the air is warmer. The train horn as it passed near Aviation Blvd. is now replaced by the trains passing in San Timoteo Canyon. I remember one night when I was young, the signal bell at 120th and Aviation was stuck on and clanged all night without a train in sight. It kept the whole neighborhood from getting any sleep. I remember the sound of "whirly birds" and our in floor heater banging as the metal expanded on cold winter mornings, the whistle of the Helm's truck and the music that came from the Good Humor Man's truck and the tinny sound of the car mounted "bull horn PA system" that drove throughout the neighborhood whenever there was an upcoming election of some sort or parade. I remember the sound of caroms as we played in the park near Sepulveda School and the sound of Mr. Chick our postman delivering mail and the sound it made as he dropped it into the wall slot next to our front door. My strongest memory my ears have is the sound that took place once a month as the "Air Raid" sirens went off at 3PM. I think it was the last Friday of the month.

Seeing the air was part of growing up in Los Angeles in the 1950's. But I remember seeing snow one time on our front yard. I remember watching the Rams play at the Coliseum. I also remember seeing my first color TV. My friend's parents got one and we would watch The Man from UNCLE on Friday nights. I remember seeing movies at the drive in and seeing traffic signals with a green arm printed GO and a red arm that had STOP. I remember seeing the web of wires all over the Los Angeles area that powered the electric buses. I remember seeing Orange groves and dairy farms that covered the land that surrounded Disneyland and Knotts. I remember my father driving us to see the Dominator after it wrecked near Palos Verdes. I remember how long it took to drive anywhere because freeways didn't go to San Diego, Bishop, Santa Clarita, Bakersfield or even to the San Fernando Valley. I remember seeing Carroll Shelby's cars running next to Imperial at LAX and meeting Sheriff John in person. I remember how scary the TV news portrayed the Bel Air Fire or the Baldwin Hills flood and I remember leaving Los Angeles at the start of the Watts Riots not knowing if our home would still be standing when we returned from vacation.

No other taste is like the spaghetti we would get for Saturday take out dinner from BBQ Pete's. I remember the rolls, a half a BBQ chicken and BBQ ribs that went with the meal. Do you remember the taste of the paste we used for projects in kindergarten? There was nothing like the taste I experienced scuba diving off Catalina when I climbed into the boat from the chilly water and was handed a mug of fresh Abalone Stew. I also miss the sandwiches from Pat's Annex Deli in Manhattan Beach, Fizzies, Simba, being able to have a "sip" of my dad's Burgie after helping cut the lawn on a hot Saturday afternoon with a push mower while listening to the Rams play by play on the radio. I miss the taste of a scoop of vanilla ice cream with a taste of dad's coffee spooned on it. There are memories of great food from the Cockatoo Restaurant. I'd even trade Starbucks coffee for coffee I was served at the Cockatoo any day.

A Catholic memory is the feel of corduroy pants that were stiff from drying on the clothesline. The itch of my Pendleton, the pain as the tape was removed from my feet after a day of football practice and the way your skin feels after several applications of "Tough Skin" from the training room still remain. I remember the burning and soreness in my lungs after playing, football practice, and after swimming during the smoggy 1950's and 1960's in Los Angeles. I remember the feel of fiberglass and resin and how it would heat up if one put too many drops of catalyst in the mix. I remember how the ocean would be so cold it hurt to go in, and then I'd turn numb because it was the day after Christmas and we were surfing for the first time on my bud's Christmas present surfboard without a wet suit. Murphy the Surfer never had a wet suit so why would we? On hot summer days at the Hawthorne High Plunge the feeling of the warm concrete we laid on because everyone had to exit the pool at the same time. I also remember the feeling of pain during football season when I got cleated (stepped on with old fashioned steel cleats) or being hit with a flying "locker basket". After High School I remember the terrible feeling upon receiving my induction notice. Out of all the feelings I remember, the worst was (and still is) the way my stomach feels when accompanying a female on the dance floor.

Eric Larson Class of 1970

This Remembrance from Richard Steward, Class of 1972

Recalling 1972
Recalling class of 1972

This is somewhat different for me as those memories are so long ago, and many of my friends seem to have not kept up on Cougar lore, but here goes.

1.) Best friends, Larry Germain and Tom Aldridge. We were basically inseparable.
2.) Favorite teachers, Mr. Wing for choir and believing in me, and Mr. Fix, and absolute nut job if there ever was one.
3.) Rumble at the Big ?T?. Anyone recall the details? We met the enemy and they changed their minds. Baseball bats will do that.
4.) Being a senior and ?Senior Square?. We were now the elite.
5.) Choir concerts. We all worried so much but they always went off without a hitch as Mr. Wing said they would.
6.) Saddest day. I believe it was a Monday, I can?t remember the date, but the phone rang early and we were informed of a classmate?s death with that of her family in a private plane crash. Maria Melendez and his mom and dad and I seem to recall she had a younger brother. Making it particularly hard for me was that she was my best friends, Larry?s, steady girlfriend at the time, and I was not sure how to talk to him about it so I was just there for him. Larry, you were like a brother and I am still here.
7.) December 1971, ?THE PARTY?. Kenny Braham and one of her sisters I believe it was set this up. I don?t recall the invitation but it was all a set up and was actually a going away party for my ex (and I say that with all sincerity) and myself. We were moving to Missouri later that month and these guys pulled off the most elaborate scheme I have ever seen. I was deeply moved and still am when I think of it. I never knew I had that many friends. I always thought I was just one of the gang.
8.) Doreen Rocca. Enough said.
9.) The departure. Leaving Southern California and my two best buds that December morning was the single most difficult thing I have ever done. And I am not ashamed to say it, real men do cry, we all three bawled like babies. Miss you guys and hope all is well.
Looking back on it now it was probably the best of times. A time when life was simple. Gas was 22 cents a gallon; Hawthorne Blvd was aglow in Christmas lights every year. Neighborhoods still decorated. There were no ?gangs? although some might have considered me and Larry, and Tom a gang of sorts. A gang of goof balls.

Yes it is true I did not actually ?graduate? from Cougar Town, but after 3 and a half years of attending the Scarlet and Gold, my heart was still a COUGAR. You want to talk culture shock? Hawthorne High Graduating class of 72? I think was a little over 600. I graduated top 10 in a class of 32. Big difference.

Richard Steward

This Remembrance from Maria Menendez Monfort, Class of 1972

Youthful Recollections
York: Troop 200 Girl Scouts
Summers with the Abrahams while my parents were at work, also hanging out on Oxford with Julie Pillar, Steve Ryan, Kathy Abraham, the Kleins, Becky Smeltzer and The Harris Family. Going to Bens with my lunch money (35 cents) and buying junk food. Debbie Ferraro, Margie Melgares, Rose Cavender, Judy Knoll, Debbie Johnston and so many others. Gene Skulick calling me Maria Tortilla and getting furious! Max Casteroni's grandfather coming to school with his lunch and not knowing which class he was in. He walked up and down the halls yelling "Maximo!"...
Walking to school and back with a gang of friends.

Hawthorne Intermediate: learning to tease my hair, getting in trouble for short skirts (Mr. Bly), listening to the transistor radio for the top 10, Taco Tio, St Joe's (was it called CCD then?) Debbie Ferraro, Melanie Gay and I sneaking out! Going to the drop in although way too young!
The Fair and the excitement as it was being set up. Holding hands with a boy thinking we were so grown up at 13! Life was so simple and the things we thought were "bad". Looking back we're pretty innocent.

High school? Too many great times to note here or it will turn to a book. I feel blessed to have lived in Hawthorne until my graduation from Cal State U Long Beach in '77! My parents bought a house in '72 on Ramona between 129th and 130th, I think. We all moved to Torrance and then PV in the 80's but Hawthorne will always be a part of my home no matter where I live.

Maria Menendez Monfort

This Remembrance from Keith D. Jones Class of 1976

My recollections of growing up in Holly Glen and going to HHS
  • My first day in 3rd grade at Cabrillo (after being expelled from Trinity Lutheran) was Valentines Day. I gave everyone candy hearts
  • Don Smith school where we had mini-Olympics against Cabrillo, Mr. Goode was the principal and I loved Cathy Ferguson and Candace Pakes. Mrs Burnham bought a new GTO
  • Peter Burnett 4th thru 6th grade. Miss Findlater was my favorite teacher. Mrs. Bell was so hot and Mr. Weiss no one liked. Playing hopscotch before school and being the best on the bars and paying handball. Square Dancing and the school Olympics where I always won the softball throw. The big weather balloon that landed in the playground everyone thought was a UFO. I played Dudley Do Right and got to kiss Luella Dariano. I still loved Candace Pakes
  • Dana; Mrs Putnam who was very sexy. Getting sent to the detention office almost regularly. Mr Brunton reading to us. Throwing paper in Mrs Sandler's class. Breaking the water faucet and causing Lake Dana. Getting paddlings from Mr Degner and beating Mr Snavley in ping pong at the Friday night dances. Mr Mack was so cool. Ralph Keskey getting chased around the playground by 6'7" Mr Williams. Trying to ask Candace Pakes to be my girlfriend in French. Setting Mr. Helvey's ThermoFax machine on fire.
  • Waking up early one Christmas morning to go to Mike Krstich's house to wake him up.
  • Capture the Flag at Holly Glen tot lot.
  • Getting my head stuck in the bike rack at the kiddie pool
  • Climbing trees everywhere at the park
  • Playing stick ball with my brother
  • Playing football in the park and over the line
  • Being the Daily Breeze paperboy in Holly Glen
  • Our housekeeper Lynn coming in my room to clean
  • My dog and best friend Bundy and the day my dad took him to the vet to be put asleep
  • Hitting golf balls from our front lawn to Cabrillo and the Middle League field
  • Playing Little League and Middle League and hitting 10 home runs in 11 games at the All Star series in Santa Maria
  • Eating dinner with the whole family
  • Going to our cabin in Running Springs and having white Christmas's in high school
  • My mom's 280Z and my first car 1959 MGA
  • My brother being the biggest I have ever seen and knowing he would protect me if I ever got beat up
  • My dad coming and watching me play baseball
  • Playing baseball for my favorite teacher and coach, Coach Minami.
  • Being in love with Kathy Lynch and being too afraid to say so.
  • Also, saying I would be married to Diane Plinck who I thought was just beautiful
  • Dan Nelson being very scary
  • Sharing lockers with the hottest girls in school Debbie Cleghorn and Rita Kobald

Keith D. Jones HHS 1976

This Remembrance from Gary Barnum Class of 1983

Remembrances from 35 Years Ago
I am class of 1983, but you won't find me in the senior yearbook, because I moved away in my junior year -- after growing up in Hawthorne school system, from York elementary, to Hawthorne Intermediate, and of course Hawthorne High. But I found my way back and have been living in Southern California for many years. You can take the boy out of SoCal, but you can't take the SoCal out of the boy...

As I live here, I often pass by the old High School and, though the memories are pretty faded, I still have a few recollections of my 2-1/2 school years there, from fall of 1979 through winter break at the end of 1981.

- I remember, in my sophomore year, being able to get into Mrs. Crum's (later Mrs. Hoy during my time there) class before Journalism 1A and turning all of the desks around backwards, and moving the teaching podium to the rear of the class, so that she got a surprise when she came in late that day...

- I wasn't on the staff, but I was sure honored and excited to have had a couple of pieces make the school newspaper. I make my living as a writer, and though I can trace the roots of that inclination back further in my life than High School, I know that my experiences at Hawthorne High had a profound influence on me.

- There was a High School journalism convention at the Disney Hotel. I got to go, and it was amazing. The editor-in-chief of the school newspaper at the time was David Keller, and he led us into all sorts of mischief -- which I will refrain from mentioning here. One thing I still laugh about was the couple who offered me a joint on the sky cars in Disneyland when I got put in one of the cars alone with them. I declined, of course...

- Mr. Macha had this great simulated world powers game in one of the classes I took with him. I remember combining two countries and having the power to conquer the world, but leveraging that power instead to broker world peace. Seemed to some classmates like a dull end of the game at the time, but oh, if only the real world could be so...

- I remember being in Mr. Courtney's business law class at the time of his daughter's terrible accident. And more recently, I remember stopping at the old high school for a car wash, and feeling really sad and old when I saw the name on the Kye Courtney Memorial Building.

- I got an A+ for being a TA in Mrs. Jacobsen's history class! I was sure for years after that that I was meant to teach...

- I remember fetching cheeseburgers at Jack In The Box for Mr. Allen.

- When I was at Hawthorne High, the little fast food restaurant across Inglewood and El Segundo, caddy-corner from the school, that looks like a Taco Bell? It actually *was* a Taco Bell.

- The Hawthorne Mall. I remember when it opened, and it was still fresh and fun and alive when I was in High School. I spent a lot of my lunch money going there on the way home from school, and picking up books in the B. Dalton, records (45s!) in the Wherehouse, or whatever...

- Mattel was still on Rosecrans back then. I always thought it would be fun to work there someday, and I am fortunate enough to have found out.

Gary Barnum, 4/22/08

This Remembrance from Ray Millman HHS 71

Growing Up on Cedar Street
From the Late 50's to the Mid 60's

This memory is about my experience of growing up as a kid in Hawthorne (pre-high school). The Millman family Ray Sr. (my dad), Jeanne (my mom), Raymond (guess who), Beth (my sister), and Clark (younger brother) all lived on Cedar St. just east of Hawthorne Blvd. and south of Imperial Hwy. My grandmother, Elsie, who I called Grandy often visited us. We enjoyed our 3 bedroom 1 bath home with a family room on a large lot. Ray Sr. sold real estate so he wasn't always home for dinner which my mom usually cooked. On Sundays we all went to church together. A meal out was a special treat then. For two family vacations we took the Big White Steamer to Catalina Island and enjoyed a week on the island.
During this time Hawthorne probably represented middle America. Hawthorne was basically all white (90%), had good schools, low crime and a lot less apartments than today. Hollyglen was where the people with money lived. If you wanted to go shopping, Inglewood was the place to go, boasting the Boston Store, JC Penney and Sears. For groceries Boy's Market, Imperial Farms and the Food Giant were handy and Lennox had some excellent produce stands.
I attended York Elementary from Kindergarten through 6th grade. Year after year many of the same people: Pam Fulton, Linda McCann, Becky Smeltzer, Debra Weller, Laura Petros, Sammy La Sala, Doug Harris, Fred Yenny, Billy Bashaw, Wally Rowland and others were in my class. Parents didn't drop kids off or pick them up from school - we walked or rode our bikes. Sometimes we stopped at Ben's Market on the way home for a RC Cola or Twinkie.
Sports we played were mainly baseball, basketball and football. No one ever played soccer! We played baseball the most and I remember many epic games after school with the Colucci's and sometimes the LoCoco's. Once I even got in a fight with Donald ? over who had danced with Leslie Kennedy, a cute blonde, in the third grade. I must have done okay because the next day an older school mate warned me not to touch Donald again (he started the fight!). My mom, Jeanne, became the Cub Scout den mother one year when no one else would do it. Mike Johnson, Tony Cherbak, Jimmy Emerson, Mike Smalley, Dennis DeCuir and others all worked on getting our merit badges. Smog was much worse than today.
Halloween was always fun. York sometimes had a carnival but the real fun was always trick or treating. Tony Cherbak, my best friend, and I would put our costumes on and go out twice. First with the other kids and then by ourselves to fill a second bag of candy. Once Tony and I were warned not to go to a certain scary looking house where a supposedly old mean lady lived. We decided to go anyway and were rewarded with our best haul of the night (we each got a full sized candy bar, an apple and a quarter). The only thing to watch out for was fast cars throwing eggs.
My dad and I joined the YMCA Indian Guides when I was 6. Our tribe, the Mohawks, was special in that a Native American Indian taught us how to perform real Indian dances. David Young, David Duvall and Danny Levandowski were also in our tribe. The Mohawks had authentic Indian dancing costumes and performed on a float in the Hawthorne Parade and for disadvantaged youth groups. Our mentor even gave each boy a real eagle claw after we mastered the dances!
Fourth of July was one of my favorite holidays. Every year we would invite our neighbors over to shoot off fireworks, legal and illegal, in our big back yard. They would usually bring a box of fireworks to add to our stash. Plus earlier in the day some friends would come over and have lunch, play ping pong, croquet and swim in our doughboy pool. Also we had a fireworks stand on the corner so we saved our money and often had a contest between Clark and myself to whose fireworks were the best and discovered size did not always win.

    Other memories of growing up in Hawthorne include:
  • Slot car racing at Al's Raceway (which my dad enjoyed) and in Steve Bierman's garage with his cute younger sisters, Susan and Sharon, watching.
  • Buying comic books at the corner liquor store and creating a collection which years later my mom threw away without asking me.
  • My brother Clark was the city Duncan Yo-Yo champ for 3 years running
  • Riding my bike in an alley with a friend to listen to an up and coming band in their garage - the Beach Boys
  • Going to the Hawthorne Fair to win prizes and go on the scary rides. We won a rabbit one year and goldfish all the time.
  • The Cuban missle crisis being a very tense time and knowing where the bomb shelter was around the corner. Also the Kennedy assassination, Watts riots and the Viet Nam War were anxious events of the time.
  • Tony Cherbak and I were playing baseball after school when a fight broke out and 2 guys jumped on Tony. Local bad boy, Donald Parrish, saw what happened scaled the fence and ripped the 2 guys off Tony. Donald, who was not our friend, then told them never to fight 2 on 1 again or else!
  • Being invited by Debbie Lee to a party at her home in the sixth grade but being too shy to go. In fact she couldn't get any boys to go. Debbie, I would like to take that back
  • Having my dad take me ocean fishing in 1958 at age 5 at Norms Landing in San Pedro and catching 2 Bonita. Later my retired neighbor, Bill Malcom, taking me fishing on the Redondo barge and the Hermosa Pier.
  • My sister, Beth, being involved in Job's Daughters, Girl Scouts and her best friends being Ruthie Cary and Debbie Yant.
  • Everyone owned American cars then and TV's were black and white with limited programming hours.
  • Mowing lawns and making a net $50 a month and thinking I had it made. Plus having Claudine Simha give me a bite of her ice cream cone on a sweltering day mowing lawns and making my day.
  • Having an upscale lady named Rose buy the house next door then proceed to remodel the house with marble and expensive upgrades which was unheard of in our neighborhood. Rose would hire me to wash down the driveway and water the lawn before the dinner parties she often threw. New Cadillac's and Lincoln's would arrive with the party guests all "decked" out. One evening I knocked on the door at the party and asked for my $2.00. Her brother Kirk invited me in and said "Rose give the boy his money" and gave me a coke. Rose's brother was Kirk Kerkorian!
Looking back, growing up in Hawthorne was a good thing, not perfect but a lot different than today. I am still waiting for my good friend James Boch to write his memories of the dark side of Hawthorne as he promised.
Anyone wishing to contact me can email me at

Ray Millman HHS71

This Remembrance from David McConnell HHS 69

Hollyglen Remembrances
I attended HHS from 1967 til 1969 when I graduated. Previously, I attended schools in the LAUSD. Here are some of my recollections from HHS
1) Cruz'n the Blvd with friends of mine in my lowered 1962 Chevy Impala ( I wasn't a lowrider ).
2) I remember ol' Jim, the janitor, who was a true Cougar rooting for our football team on Friday nights and offering me and my buddles a "shot" of whiskey at his "office" during school!
3)I so wanted to date Bonnie Simmons, but she was already dating someone else. Darn!!
4) Being a member of the Bishops car club with Max Castoroni, Benny Chiconi, Jerome Rynda, Tim O'Mally, Tom Gruden, etc.
5) Mike Underwood and myself "dining and dashing" from Hollys one night!
6) The Manhattan 26th street parties!
7) Getting some "cool" guy to buy Rick Fernandez and myself some "hardstuff" , then Rick getting major sick!
8) The party at Mrs. Hayes house at the beach after we completed our final exams THERE!
9) I pleasantly recall Cindy Ward, Clorissa Lawhon, et al, and myself at the "drop-in" dances, especially the "make out" section in the back!
10) Totalling my car out at Inglewood Ave. and Lennox on my way to Bob's Big Boy. I walked away without a scratch!!
11) My brothers and sisters and I lived on 122nd street near the school, so we had one of those typically large "Hawthorne" parties at our house, and the next day the place was "trashed", but we cleaned everything up in time before our parents returned!!
12) "Baby-sitting" with Linda Naylor. When her parents arrived home prematurely, I ran like heck through her back yard and over the fence to my house!
13) Drinking hehind Thrifty's next to the railroad track with Pam Frank before the home football games.
14) A "SHOUT OUT" to coaches Hal and Bunyard!!
15) The Beach Boys at MY prom April 18, 1969!! Wow!!
16) Kirk Meyer and myself getting drunk on the last day of school at my Brother-in-laws house before we went to school (almost busted!!).
17) Cruzing the Blvd. with my new girlfriend Teri and showing her the HHS "party scene. She lived around 136th street and the Blvd, but she attended St. Marys Academy in Inglewood.
18) Filling my gas tank up for 28 cents a gallon!
19) Roberta "Bobbi" Chasin...enough said!
20) I was actually a boxer and trained at Gordon Shaw's boxing club after school. I just didn't want to get all of my hair shaved off playing a team sport at HHS!! Well, those were some of my recollections of Hawthorne and there are many more, which space won't allow me to share. A "shout out" to all the people that I got to know at HHS!! Many of them would be surprised that these days I competitively compete in 5k's to marathons, travel to Italy every year, teach track and field to H.S. students (I'm a former Decathlete-400 meter hurdler), and as a Christian, I work with college students at Fullerton College and Cal State Fullerton!

God Bless, David McConnell (Class of '69)

This Remembrance from Kristen Rice HHS 69

My Life In Hawthorne
I lived in the middle of 142nd St in HollyGlen at 1148, now 5448. Our closest neighbors were the Hale's, Johnston's, Bower's, Hildebrandt's, Frederick's, Harrington's, Pat's, Evans' and Hoodward's.
My dad, Jack, was the State Farm Agent on El Segundo Blvd. with his partner Cecil Zumwalt, (Denny, Bruce, and Jeff's dad.) My mom, Janet, was the best, and still is! Every Monday night my mom stopped at Green Farms for their hot barbecue beef and sheepherders bread, cole slaw and Pepsi. It was take-out dinner night before my folks left to play volleyball at Holly Park Auditorium with the YWCA group for about 10 years straight.
I learned to swim in the HHS baby pool in 1956-57 along with most of the neighborhood. Until I won the privilege of riding my bike to the beach, I enjoyed those 10 cent afternoons with all my heart. I learned to do swan dives off of that great diving board, jack-knifes off of the platform and belly-flops off of the 12 foot high board. Boy, I can still feel the searing pain and gross embarrassment of those futile attempts at flips. Never again, I never did!
I used to throw fastballs to Mr. Hoodward after he'd come home from work at the Paul Hoodward Real Estate office on Inglewood Ave. Our street lacked girls my age for quite a few years, so I became an acceptable quarterback in our street football games. For a real game we'd go over to Peter Burnette for some tackle football. I could give as good as I got.
The neighborhood doors were always open, the morning coffee always brewing, and the mom's were almost always at home. The Yuban coffee rata-tat-tat was never far away. The summer's saw the 142nd St. kids wearing hand stenciled white T-shirts with our teamname -the Tiger's - riding bikes to the east, one day a week to Hawthorne Bowl; and, swimsuit clad with towels around our necks heading west to El Segundo Beach two days a week, knowing that we were just fine and nobody worried about where we were, how we rode there or what we did as long as we made it back home by five o'clock for dinner. On the days we stayed home, my mom would put out a red triangular flag that meant all of the kids in the neighborhood could come over to swim with a parent or guardian or not.
I used to walk to school every day to Peter Burnette and then R. H. Dana with Diane Nezgoda and Theresa June. Theresa used to run home with me every afternoon to watch part of "The Thin Man" with Peter Lawford and part of "The Private Eye" with Craig Stevens. I really did like older men!
At Peter Burnett I ran with Kirk Meyer, Larry Metzler, Lee Dale, and Steve Westphalen. I also did most of the homework for the guys when it came to group study. We joined forces in the 4th grade and mowed lawns, washed cars and babysat for money to pay for some really nice presents for Miss Charlton's wedding. Remember the pointed frame clock's so popular back then? Thanks to my mom, we also got to attend her wedding in Culver City, where she became Mrs. Broderick. Small world that it is, my family and I ran into the honeymooning couple in Idaho, outside a restaurant, with no prior knowledge of where they were staying.
My brother Jack (1970) was my friend and foe. One day at Dana Jr. High, I was taking a note for the Principal to one of the teacher's. Yes, I was the good kid. The new Spanish teacher, from Cuba, I believe, was screaming at someone in his class. The next thing I knew a door flew open, a kid flew out and when the door slammed shut, my brother Jack was settling himself down on the steps of building #8 amidst the broken glass of a now shattered window. He casually looked up, and with a huge grin, said " Hi, Kris!"
When I turned 13 my brother and I went off to camp in No. CA for a whole month. When we returned our parents couldn't find the words to tell us that our neighborhood was under a curfew and had restricted movement due to an event called the "Watts Riots." I remember dad had to show his driver's license to get past the guards on Rosecrans and Isis. It ended soon a few days later. Jack and I had been blissfully ignorant.
Pat Mann, Chris Mann's mom, was our Girl Scout troop leader along with Debbie Frank's mom, Gloria, and Debbie Swanson's mother. I knew my tomboy days were over when one night at a mountain cabin, after Mrs. Frank yelled up to the 2nd floor, at about 12 of us chattering scouts to quiet down or she'd put several of us next to each one of the six chaperone parents- I yelled back- "I'll take Harry!" (Mr. Swanson). Even the parents couldn't stop laughing.
In the 7th grade I invited Mr. Plotkin and Mr. Ziff over for afternoon tea. My mother was most accommodating as official hostess, and little did I know then how gracious these favorite teachers were to accept. Perhaps it was because Mr. Plotkin wrote on my Report Card, "Kristen turns in all of her homework, pays attention in class, is very conscientious, but fails her tests." Math was my nemesis then, but has become more friendly over the years, thanks in large part to Mrs. Atkins, who showed me things backward can be understood by some better than others. Also, I wanted to graduate early so I could register in January for El Camino J.C., and Mr. Barton said, "Only if you take Algebra II and pass with a B or better!" Psychology is a marvelous tool if used well. Bribes were not a topic of that era, but I figured a couple of homemade Lemon Meringue pies couldn't hurt my chances of securing a passing grade. He loved the pies, I got a B+ on my own, and Marc Tucker stayed between me and Jack, who sat menacingly behind me, throughout the semester.
Between Jr. and Sr. HS I was an avid team player with the HolyGlen Park Girl's softball team. Janet Mercurio, Sherry Crow, Pauline Spencer, Nancy Akin and a few others whose names have drifted from memory, and I were a tough team to beat under the sharp eye and tough stares of Coach Ketzler, Coach Frank, Coach Pat and Coach Mike, an HHS English teacher for many years beginning in 1964. A lot of our night games were played at Holly Park. One of our teammate's. named Sharon, was married to a nice guy who became a Marine, went to Vietnam, fought in the jungles and because he was a wiry, little guy was a "jungle rat." He fell on a pungi stake pit, had major surgeries over many months, came to Mr. Baxter's Speech class and showed us his war wounds, told us his harrowing tales of wartime survival, and let us know in no uncertain terms that he was going back as soon as he could run 5 miles with a full backpack, while smoking a cigarette. He was my first real reality check on life. HS years brought Anita HARMON Bell, John Bothwell, and Cheryl CARTER, who later became Rod Todd's wife, and to our block. Now Anita lives probably fifteen miles from me, in Sacramento, CA, but we only e-mail, promising to get together when we can. Kathy SALISBURY Hunn, Richard Gray and Charlie Fox have all crossed my path here in Sacto. Theresa JUNE Sharrock left here about 10 years ago for Idaho, to raise her second family of two girls. Kathy spent some time in Mississippi with her church group helping the Hurricane Katrina victims. Kathy says she'll never be the same again.
Tim Petersen was a constant visitor at our home as Jack's friend in H.S. Debbie REID Elliott was at my house when I wasn't at her house. In later years, Tim became unofficial "Uncle Tim" to my boys, Rob and James, and they were devastated, as was I, when he died way too young. Marc took over Uncleship and the boys enjoyed lots of guy things with him through their teenage years. Debbie is now a grandmother of 5 1/2, still hangs with Lupi DOMINGUEZ Perkins and Pauline SPENCER Matthews, and is still my very best friend.
On the first day of H.S. when walking out toward the tennis courts, Gary Beaird said, "Hey, Kris, let's see you catch this. He threw a hard "Beaird spiral pass" and I caught it. But I knew my football days were over. They soon were replaced by "fencing with Mr. Williams "and GAA. Most Cougar folk don't know that HHS took a 2nd in the Western States Fencing Tournament in 1967.
In my freshman year, at our first "Backwards dance" I asked Jon Sloey to be my date. He declined. It wasn't until our 20th Reunion that I reminded him of that event. He most graciously stated, "Tonight, I'm yours." We had a long and happy chat about day's gone by. As for Kirk Meyer, my buddy since Kindergarten at Cabrillo, he still hasn't signed my yearbook. Now, if only I could find it!
Life goes on, CRUISE Night's come and go, but I often count my blessings for the many happy memories of Hawthorne, and a life that now seems very surreal. And God Bless Harry Plotkin and The Beach Boy's!!

Kristen Rice HHS '69

This Remembrance from Jerry LaForce HHS 77

Some Random Hawthorne Memories
My mother walking me to first day of kindergarden at York and saying "This is where you go" and "You know the way home".
Thinking to myself "Those monkey bars make all this learnin to tell time jazz worth it".
Gettin busted talking and takin nap time outside.......again!
Upon promotion to 1st grade, wagering the gents "You could land a plane on this playground!"
Defying the laws of physics on the swings, bars, tetherball, lunch, etc.
Sneakin to Bens market for peanutbutter cups and 6 feet of grape gum.
York School Carnival....Yeah baby!
Field trips to the museum and that dinosaur that always had a different head and those cool electric trains that were always out of order. The shock thing.
Illegal puppet shows in the fifth grade puppet theatre with the purple curtains.
Waiting 6 years for Wrightwood Camp so we could raid the girls cabin. Pouring resin on a big bug came in a close second.
Going over my limit of Mr Blake's "your busted" 3x5 cards and being banished to Washington in the middle of sixth grade.
Getting the inside lowdown on Hawthorne Intermediate half a year early and thwarting his evil plan.
Presidential physical fitness patches.
Sitting in front of Adreian thus developing this huge crush on her which in turn led to a duel with my seventh grade teacher. A guy gets plenty of fresh air with a desk outside.
To be continued

Jerry LaForce HHS '77

This Remembrance from Lawrence Bach HHS 72

Impressions of life at Hawthorne High and after
The freshman
I fear that girls won?t like me
or sneer snide words to strike me
being shy is sure tough
never risking rebuff
so I sit all alone nightly

I had a secret crush on the lovely, Laurie Gilbert.

The Sosh-seer
mirror maid
marry me
I love you
reflect me

Oh, those stuck-up girls constantly looking in their little compact mirrors!

The sophomore
Lunch line talking
Nice legs walking
Hold the mayo
STOP that gawking!

No sophomoric drooling over the daily specials, especially if their boyfriends were seniors.

First love
heart yearned
love spurned
pain earned
trust turned
bridge burned
much learned

And I had so much more to learn.

The junior
Stop light
dark night
missed it
red light
Cop?s bike
beams bright

Mister Benny
Hey! Mister Benny?s back in town
and just when I was coming down
next to my locker, my cross topped friend
he?s come to take me around the bend
He inflates my head just like a balloon
makes me soar sky high and howl at the moon
and recklessly ride on my old bye-cycle
if I do I?ll soon fly with the Archangel Michael
When he runs sniffling around Nyman Hall
he leaves me sleepless to bounce off the wall
my brain?s sick of jumping like a carnival clown
go find ?Barb? or ?Val? to bring me back down

The late 60?s cliché of ?better living through chemicals? was a dangerous myth, ruining the lives of several ?Cougar? friends and leading me close to self-destruction.

The senior
Waves crashing white on El Porto beach
sitting in the breeze just out of reach
thinking out loud with mind engaged
sketching blue curls on sand-blown page
I think I?ll stash this drawing soon
and swim away this afternoon

Mr. Williams, thank you for teaching me that the key to all Art is sensitivity
A Graduate
It was blue sky on that June day
in my mustang on coast highway
life was simple, I was eighteen
four buck of gas could get me far away

Another highway, a winding snake
as fast from home as I could make
through the deep South in to the army
had my ass kicked, got my head straight

Saw my future over the steering wheel
but that fair horizon just wasn?t real
a shining mirage down the highway
I didn?t know what life?s cards would deal

Now my hair has started turning gray
I drive a used car around the south bay
I?m that age again, but just today
and I can only dream about the highway

Today, four bucks of gas will get me to work and back.

A Cougar reflects
To breathe in each moment
Touching and giving
With as much
as pain
is living

Mrs. Brooks, thank you for reading e.e. cummings to your English 2B class in 1969

An alumnus quotes Dryden
?Happy the man
and happy he alone
He who can call the day his own;
He who secure, within can say
tomorrow do thy worst, for I have lived today
Be fair or foul or rain or shine
The joys I have possessed, in spite of fate, are mine
Not heaven itself upon the past has power,
But what has been, has been, and I have had my hour.?

P.S. this alumnus is on daylight savings time and therefore has not yet finished his hour.
Lawrence J. Bach, HHS Class of 1972

This Remembrance from Vicki Nielson

Remembering Holly Glen
Remember the Braves Little League Team.

Having fun chasing and being chased on Hindry Place where I lived.

Joe the Helm's Bakery Man who really was a bookie.

Remembering the fort in our backyard which crashed down on top of Steve Lewis.

Bill Bowden and my brother taking turns driving his mom's VW out of the driveway.

Remembering when we moved from our house in Hollyglen to Huntington Beach and crying the whole way to our new house.

This Remembrance from Lyle Tucker HHS Class of '77

Hawthorne's Tornado
I was in 2nd grade, I think, in Mrs. Black's room, when the unthinkable happened in Hawthorne - a small tornado ripped through our town. This must've been about 1967. It was something of a rainy day and we were staying inside instead of going out for recess (you remember how the classes would play "Seven Up" on rainy days, where everyone except 7 of the kids would stay at their desks with their heads down and their thumbs out, so that one of the 7 kids could come by and "tag" you on your thumb, and then you were supposed to guess who it had been who'd tagged you? I always guessed Gina Covell, because I was deeply and madly in love with her throughout most of elementary school.).

Anyways, we were all inside when the air-raid sirens went off suddenly. Immediately Mrs. Black told us to "duck and cover" under our desks - do they still teach kids this? We did so, and as I recall it (it *has* been a few years now), the tornado passed down the street that separated the younger grades from the older side, and there was a loud ill-defined noise as it passed, throwing the class into something of a tizzy - we were pretty scared. We didn't know *what* was happening, but we did know that this wasn't normal! Later on we heard that a girl had been on her way to the office at the time the tornado came through and was not going to be able to get inside before it reached her. Mr. Fry, the principal (and what a great guy he was) motioned for the girl to wrap her arms around the monkey bars so the tornado wouldn't drag her away. Apparently she came out of it okay.

I remember walking home that day (I lived on 129th street) and being stunned by the damage caused by the thing (minor, really, but to my small eyes it was major). Plants and small trees had been ripped out, loose matter from people's yards were strewn across some streets, a window here and there had been cracked by something striking it. When I got home I found out that it had traveled through our back yard and took with it a large table umbrella that we had set up. Pretty wild stuff. I remember having nightmares of a tornado coming into my bedroom not long after it and spreading my comic book collection everywhere as it whisked me off. Hah!

Lyle Tucker
Class of '77

This Remembrance from Hans Bertelsen HHS Class of '67

Remembering the 2 wheeler set of HHS
In these days of 150 horsepower street bikes and 500cc's being considered entry level machines, I thought I might try to recall the good old days when giant roadeaters like the yamaha 80 and Honda S-90 ruled for the under 18 set. I'm going to name names, tell the deep dark secret and generally try to recall the foibles of being an upcoming rider in the age of "you meet the nicest people on a Honda." I will be adding to this column in installments . This way perhaps those mentioned will have a chance to contact me with more information. And always remember anything you say can be used against you in a court of law.

Me? I'm Hans Bertelsen class of 67 and the following is a list of all the players in this little skit and to the best of my recollection the bikes they had while at HHS. Len Fein..Bultaco Metrella 200cc, Blake Withell..Bridgestone 175, Dan Puetz..DOT 250 scrambler, Art Councill ..Yamaha YDS3C Big Bear scrambler, Norm Evans..Yamaha YG1 80 and an Ariel Red Hunter 500cc single, Ed Skinner ..Honda CB160, Don Alred..Honda 305 Superhawk, Ron Febraro ..650 Triumph Bonneville, Chuck Elliot Yamaha YDS3 250, Bill Miller Honda S-90and me with a Yamaha YG1-T 80 and a Ducati 250 scrambler. Anyone listed here is welcome to contact me at .... toomany2wheelers with tales or corrected information. After this comes the stories as I remember them so hang on to your hats . Until next installment ..


Episode 2 How I got started. I was a lousy student. My brother,Lance was honor roll, Knights all the good stuff. I was doing double auto shop classes with metal shop thrown in for good measure. A dose of math 2 was in the mix just to make it seem like I was a student. But I wasn't rocketing up the acedemic ladder. A late bloomer who wasn't blooming, you get the picture. My dad, in a move borne of mild desperation, called me aside one day and asked what it might take to jump start my education. The answer was simple, I needed a motorcycle. We came to an understanding. IF a bike was to show up in the garage grades in all areas would go up too. And stay up. No grades, no ride. I can't recall the exact series of events that transpired in the following months but shortly after recieving my learners permit (which allowed you to operate a motorcycle) I returned from the beach to find my parents in the living room looking rather distressed. "Go clean up that mess in the garage." my father sternly said. Since I excelled at making messes this admonition seemed perfectly normal. Upon opening the garage door a 1963 Yamaha YG1T 80cc motorcycle greeted me. Incredible! What a machine! 7 rampaging horsepower! Rotary valve induction. On a good day with me flat on the tank this baby would hit 58 miles per hour. I had arrived. And my grades went up too.
Coming next Episode 3.. Norm Evans and the 500cc Ariel Single.

Episode 3: Norm Evans and the fearsome Ariel Red Hunter. As we progressed up the displacement ladder from little 80cc beginner bikes we were greeted by an ever increasing array of "newer, bigger, better machines." I jumped up to a Ducati 250 scrambler, with others following suit into various 250 and 300cc bikes. Norm took a different route. Somehow he got his hands on a 500cc Ariel Red Hunter, a twin port model as I recall.A real powerhouse with probably 38 horsepower. The true reputation of the big British single lay not with its power output but with the unique starting drill required to bring the beast to life. Owners of Nortons,B.S.A Goldstars and Velocette Thruxtons were known to swap stories of their machines starting ritual. The Ariel was no exception. Norm had put a great deal of work into his bike. A rather nice looking chopper type of machine painted a nice candy green. The immense lump of engine with its separate gearbox was showcased nicely in its green surroundings. Nestled inside the cast iron cylinder waiting to be called into action one piston about the size of a small coffee can. We had assembled at Norms house for the great event, The starting of the bike. Norm had recieved some last minute instruction from his buddy Malcolm Fratkins father who claimed to have had experience with these magneto fired machines, however no one bothered to check which direction the advance lever should be moved to RETARD the spark. Mr. Fratkin,I guess,figured it was correct to just pull the lever all the way to the stops. With the carb primed and ignition set Norm raised himself up and came down on the kick lever as hard as he could. Their was a mechanical whirr and then a not so muffled explosion as a cylinderfull of high test gasoline was lit off with about 45 degrees of spark lead. Insted of booming to life the Chevy size piston drove backwards through the kick lever.Launching Norm literally straight up. He pivoted,rather gracefully, around the handlebars until for a brief moment he was doing a hand stand on the bars. Then unceremoniously crashing down on to the gas tank. We were dumbfounded. Then the reality of what we had just witnessed settled in and we all exploded into laughter,Norm included. After some adjustments the Ariel started and ran fine. Who knows? It could still be out their somewhere. Next... Episode 4.. Len Fein, Natalie Pace and the Honda Service School

This Remembrance from Ray Millman Class of '71

Tales From The "Gigs", or Partying in the early 70's
Parties or "Gigs" as HHS students called them in the early 70's brings back a lot of fond memories for me. Usually 50 to 200 kids over the course of an evening would get together Friday or Saturday night at someone's home whose parents weren't home, to talk, pick up girls, meet boys, drink, have a good time, be seen, or whatever until the police broke it up. Most came from Hawthorne High, but also Leuzinger and El Camino College too. When the party was busted or ended a lot of people continued the party at the 26th St. parking lot in Manhattan Beach. It was usually BYOB (bring your own brew) Apple Jack, Boones Farm, Spinada and other high quality wine, plus beer made up the standard drink with some hard liquor thrown in. Usually on Thursday people at school would start asking where the parties would be that weekend and they obtained erroneous addresses as often as the real ones. Boys Market where I worked as a box boy and a checker was a hot bed of activity for party information.

Personally I started to party the fall of my senior year with Terry Flippin and Lyle Ikeuchi both good friends. One particular memory I have is going to a party at Steve Schuetze's home. Terry, and I were talking to Leslie Shelton and her friend who both said they wanted some wine. So we all got in my Ford Falcon and drove a few blocks to Terry's house and got the Spinada. Against my request to wait until we get back to the party, Terry opens the bottle and pours the girls a drink. I ask Terry where to turn and he says right now, so I pull a sharp right off Inglewood Ave. without signaling. Before I know it I have flashing lights from a police car behind me. Terry drops the glass he's pouring in the car, the girls are scared and I don't know what to do. If I pull over straight ahead I will lead the cops to the party but right now I have my own problems, so I keep going forward with the police behind me, turn left at the first street and then turn right and stop. The cop says to me, "Son don't you know what a flashing red light means"? Before I can answer his partner shines his flashlight and sees the Spinada wine bottle now tipped over and spilling out on the floor mat. He has all of us sit on the curb, has me pour out the rest of the wine, and proceeds to tear the car apart looking for drugs (no we didn't use). In my glove compartment he found a small Bible (which is still in my car today and very important to me personally) and said, "Ray you must not be the kind of person to do this normally so I'm only going to give you a ticket for not signaling a turn", and he let us go. We were all shaken a little but went to the party, which the police never did bust.

By the end of my senior year, right before I graduated, I felt it was my turn to throw a gig. I convinced my reluctant Mom, Jeanne, to allow the party on her condition my Dad, Ray Sr., stayed there and my disappointed brother Clark, in the eighth grade at the time, go see a movie with her. My sister Beth a sophomore could stay. Gary Shambaugh called to advise me to hold it another night because someone else was throwing a party that night and I wouldn't be able to compete. I told Gary it was too hard to get my Mom's OK and we would have to stay with the date. A few girls I knew said they wouldn't come because my Dad would be there and ruin the party. That was a serious misjudgment on their part for they didn't know my Dad!

The party started at 8:00pm and continued to build. My Dad stayed out in front of our house on Cedar Ave. and kept everyone with my help in the house or in our large backyard. When the police showed up at 10:00pm to end the party my Dad stepped off the curb into the street to greet the officers and told them he was in charge and that we would end the party at midnight. They drove by a few times after that only to have my Dad wave at them. Before the night was over we had approximately 200 people and even a biker or two attend my gig. Casualties included no food left in the refrigerator, chipped piano keys, beer cans and wine bottles everywhere and the house left in a mess. A fellow HHS senior who will remain anonymous started to walk out the door with 10 of my albums before Scott Armstrong told me what was happening and I recovered them without incident. At midnight I ended the party and my first big "gig" was over

The next day my party was the talk of the school. Interestingly enough, thanks to my Dad, we weren't busted at 10:00pm like everyone else's big party and that was the difference between a good party and a great one! My Dad continued to help with large parties topped off when Gary and I threw a 21st birthday "gig" for ourselves at the log cabin on Aviation complete with Steve Fisher's karate school as bouncers. But that is another story all in itself.

I have a few other memories in closing:

1. Being at a rowdy Greg Willis party in Hollyglen and hearing Neil Young's Southern Man start playing and the whole place went silent!
2. Being first at Bonnie Simmons party at 6:00am with Gary and Chris Claudio before the Senior breakfast. Ask Gary or Chris what happened.
3. Being driven down Rosecrans at 100 mph by Joe Seidenthol in his mothers Cadillac and going by a stopped Manhattan Beach policeman out of his car writing a ticket and seeing his mouth drop open (ours did too).
3. Driving my yellow Camaro across the circle between the palm trees on Broadway on a dare with Anna Nicocia, Enza Nicocia, Julie Pillar, and Mike Hales in my car.
5. Having a Manhattan Beach policeman at 26th Street tell us that anybody from Hawthorne, our parents included, were not welcome there.
6. Jan Van Schaik letting me tell only 4 people 1 day before his party so we would only have 100 people and not more at his party (which we did).
7. After 30 years the jury is still out on the Maryann Dowell and Anna Nicocia quandary?

Other friends who I partied with and not previously mentioned were Allen Edholm, Robert Reuger, Mike Brodeur, John Bistolas, Jeff Hunter, Bob Shelton, Roland Poltash, and Mike Kratz aka Wolfman.

Also for current students or young people reading this tale I do not recommend trying to do anything mentioned in this article yourself. Anyone reading this with a good memory please feel free to email me at with your recollection.

Ray Millman Class of '71

This Remembrance from Myron Ferdig HHS Class of '61

Remembering the turn of the 60's
In 1961 the Congo was split east / west...opposing factions supported by the... ' then' two super powers...and Patrice LaMumba was recognized Prime Minister......LaMumba demanded his peoples be re-united as one nation and US papers (must have been a slow news day) headlined his ultimatum: LET MY PEOPLE GO!!! ......
meanwhile, back at HHS.... a few fellows got caught for some infraction during lunch and spent 5th period in the office when they should have been in Mr. Orrell's English class......He promptly shot off an urgent demand of Mr. Nyman...LET MY PEOPLE GO!!! ....As I recall we had a substitute the following day. (By the way, Mr. Orrell, thanks for teaching language construction!)

About two months into Junior year(1960) ....sitting in chemistry class....Mr. Archer, who enjoyed an open, casual approach to teaching, decided it was time to bring a few in the class up short with a lecture: " Some of you started this year out fast and furious...and I thought I had an exceptional group on my hands. Now it seems you are stagnating, and becoming less than average! Don't think you can pull the wool over my eyes and coast through this year....I won't be hoodwinked!"........ No one spoke for a few seconds...I looked around at Terri Miller and then at Bill Brown...waiting for someone to respond.... No one did....Soooo, to ease the tension, I offered, "What about the rest of us who started off really, really slow ?"

Physics was my very favorite class. ...28 guys...and 1 young lady......AND....she and I sat across the aisle from each other in the back of the class....AND...held hands when Mr. Silcox wasn't looking. One day he happened to glance up to catch us with arms swinging to and fro. Pushing his glasses firmly back on the bridge of his nose, he stood and ambled in our direction. "Oh,Oh, here it comes," Darlene whispered. "We're in trouble now." He stood between us, glaring, then bent over Darlene and whispered, "You're the cutest girl in my class"....and walked back to his desk.

I met Darlene Lata in my Junior year...(I moved to the HHS district from Leuzinger between 10th and 11th grades) a result of her laugh ...and my brilliance. Mr Wade asked the means by which an enormously giant ship of several thousand tons could manage to stay afloat. ....When I answered, "Water", a special relationship was born.

I bought a 1950 studebaker for $100 ...don't had windshield washers ....and I played chauffeur most of the time. Crammed with buddies - Jim Parisi, Russ Omey, Wally Ristow, and whomever else...we'd hit the beach at Manhattan. ...One slight problem : No guts..our only means of getting back up the hill was in reverse ...or ...(depending on total body weight)...go well beyond Redondo Beach to get home..... I considered taking it to Tijuana to have it "Tuck and Rolled"....but Bob Johnson said it should be tar and feathered ... so I refrained.

The slow drawl of Les Martin comes to mind as I recall the time I bumped into him in a local drug store and asked him what had brought him into the place. " I'm here to buy my dawg an enema" .... "An enema for your dog...Why?" ..."Cause he's full o' shit" .....DUH

Myron Ferdig Class of '61

This Remembrance from Pat Phillips Stark HHS Class of '59

Early HHS Days
I am so excited to have found this web site, John, you have outdone yourself.

It just amazes me that the feeling we get when we go into Cougartown, such wonderful memories of the days past at H.H.S. I was born and raised in Hawthorne, my mother had a little cafe for years next to the Boston Store on Hawthorne Blvd. I used to work there after school.

In my Senior year she bought the Town House Cafe right by Kenneth Chevrolet on the blvd.

I was never one for being on the Drill team of cheer leading, I was to quiet, but I spent all 4 years in Choir and 3 years in Modern Dance with Mrs. Cable. We were always performing for the school and many outside functions. What Fun!

Remembering my teachers is a very happy thought, my favorite teachers were Mr. Wing(Choir). Mr. Kirkpatrick, he was so wonderful, I had him for English for 3 years of High School and of course Mr. Capelouto, 2 years of General Business, I really thought he was the handsomest teacher in the world, me being a sixteen year old girl, I couldn't wait to go to his class, and believe me I sure wasn't his best student, Favorite hangouts were Foster Freeze and on football nights it was the Lighthouse Drive In, I also spent a lot of time at my Moms Cafe, she had the best Burgers in town.

Best friends were Bonnie Beinert and Carleen Tunnell they too were 59 Graduates. Other friends I hung out with were Nancy Morton, Linda Cook, Jim Stillwell, John Streltzoff and so many more.

Those were the most memorable and happy days of my life and thanks to Cougartown I can share it with all of you.

Thank You, Take Care Cougars.
Pat Phillips Stark 1959

This Remembrance from Rusty Perkins HHS Class of '74

Remembering the early 70's
I spent New Year`s Eve drinking Crown Royal Shooters and talking with my two oldest & dearest friends,Bob Straube (class of `74) & Bob Clobucker (class of `73) literally for hours. We talked about other classmates & mutual friends, both alive and deceased. It was a most wonderful evening and it made me realize how lucky I am for what I still have. It also inspired me to input my recollections of dear Ol` Hawthorne High.

(1) I`ll start with walking the beautiful Roni Treckman to her next class after Herr Grahamer`s German class.
(2)Listening to "Can`t Stop This Feeling" every day in Mr. Claypool`s Architecture class-ookah ookah ookah chaka
(3) Mr. Bennett saying "I like it ,I like it. I like it" in wood shop
(4) messing up my Dad`s car trying to give it a tune-up in auto shop
(5) Mrs. Mark-nothing else needs to be said about her,She was one of a kind!!
(6)playing on the Golf team with the likes of Dirk Bailey, Geno Effler, Tom Aylward, et al
(7)Winning The Ocean League our senior year( O K so we were co-champs) with my fellow Varsity buds Greg Guerrero,Mark Pappas,Steve Mcguire,Tom Tate,and even the irrepressible Rick Labriola-Thank You Sid Semon
(8)Playing towel football In the baby pool on hot days during P.E.
(9)Mr.T (the original Mr.T)
(10) Playing Dracula in our short movie In Modern Media and being covered in chocolate syrup that we used for blood when they drove a stake thru my heart.

I`ve thought about these adventures and people throughout the years and they are wonderful memories. I`m sure I`m leaving out a few but what the heck. That`s what happens when you get older right????

Peace and love everyone
Rusty Perkins (class of `74)

This Remembrance from Melinda Elia Farrow HHS Class of '82

Remembering the 80's
I remember?

  • Dolphin shorts only the bold color ones were hot not the two shaded ones.
  • My bright orange '68 Pontiac Firebird that my parents gave me for my 16th. birthday.
  • Boones Farm wines?they were cheap, tasty and somehow easy to get?? Favorite flavors..Strawberry Hill and Apple.
  • Having your hair feathered or with wings.
  • Hawaiian print shirts? Not sure why, but I wore it anyways?.
  • Ditching a class before or after lunch and driving to Manhattan Beach, but first hitting
  • Annex Deli for a 'Good Earth' on squaw.
  • Senior pictures..and getting slightly intoxicated with my best friend before having them taken. Then not being able to hold a pose without busting up.
  • Mr. Atkins..his English class and having to do a project on "The Grapes of Wrath". First you had to read the entire book, well that didn't happen, who had time to read that big book. So we read the back cover and a few paragraphs and began our project. We made a huge cake for our class with illustrations from the book on top of the frosting. We got an "A".
  • My boyfriend for the last 3 years of my high school years. And still friends today, I love him dearly.
  • Van Halen, Aerosmith, REO Speedwagan, AC/DC, Molly Hatchet, Ted Nugget, YES, Ozzy Osborne and of course Led Zepplin. The fabulous forum!
  • ThriftyMart
  • Rocco's Pizza? my first job for summer vacation '79.
  • Hawthorne Mall?Suzies Casuals, Petries, Contempo, Fashion Corner.
  • S.C.R.O.C.
  • My little sister..13 years younger than me who I had to always watch.
  • The after football game dances, Christmas dances, and Sadie Hawkins dances.
  • My Prom... which I only stayed, long enough to eat and have my pictures taken. Held at the California Plaza.
  • My mom and dad, who always stood by me, even when I was not the perfect daughter to have around.
  • The moped my dad got me, and all the places my boyfriend and I went to on it..whenever it didn't break down on us.
  • My sweet 16-birthday party and all my friends from school that attended. And having a cake fight outside, what a mess!
  • Ramona Park..and the pumpkin coach in the sandbox..a great make out spot.
  • Coach Noel Smith.
  • Instructor Mike Gold.
  • The Friday night football games, not missing a single one because my boyfriend was on the team. And wearing his football jersey to school #88.
  • Jack in the Box and Taco Bell.
  • Ditto pants?especially the pink and baby blue ones.
  • Lip gloss, the fruity kind like the one my 15-year-old daughter uses now.
  • Leg warmers (Scary)
  • Mr. John Bree?what a babe he was!
  • And all the friends I had/made while at Hawthorne High. I love you all so much. Everyone had a part of something I had written; you all know who you are. I will always cherish our memories together.

Melinda Elia Farrow HHS Class of '82

This Remembrance from Coach Jim Bunyard

Coach Bunyard vs Carl Wilson
I remember this conversation I had with Carl Wilson like it was yesterday.

Carl was a sophomore in my P.E. class, and in those days it was a mortal sin not to dress for P.E. (a non strip). I could never get Carl to dress for my P. E. class. When, on those rare occasions, he did dress for class he would come out wearing his cowboy boots and carrying his guitar. During class he would sit on the bench play his guitar, never taking part in any class activity.

One day I decided to have a man to man talk with Carl, so I sat down beside Carl and told him he was probably going to fail P.E. Carl says to me" coach thats ok, I really don't like P.E." So I ask Carl what he wanted to do with his life. Carls' response was, "coach all I want to do is learn how to play this guitar and join a band". My great bit of advice to him was, "Carl you are never going to make a living playing that g-----d guitar. You would be smart to put that guitar in a closet some place, and go find a real job. Ten years from now I will probably see you up on Hawthorne blvd. selling pencils or something".

Boy, some advice. By the way, I did give him an "F" in P.E.

Coach Bunyard

This Remembrance from Bob Clobucker HHS 73

69-73 by Bob C.
Hal Chauncey saying: "I don't care if you're a Junior Jesus and can walk on water, you're not setting foot in my gym without wearing a banana hammock!"

Mr Andersens Print Shop after lunch period 72-73 and partying a wee bit before and during class. All you culprits know who you are!!

Weird cheeseburgers from the cafeteria--same as jail food perhaps?

Mini bike and dirt bike riding -fancy driving out at Hoki. Jim Bollinger where are ya?? Plus overturning in Tom O'donnells dads 64 Falcon while hotdogging it in the dirt. Landing back upright then cruising around town with the roof caved in-windows smashed getting the strangest looks from everyone.

Learning to drive in my older brothers 66 Shelby GT-350 Mustang. Summer of 72- Having full- time use of my bros 69 Boss 302 Mustang all summer long. Street racing-going to the beach and to parties all over LA-Orange Counties. I fondly remember when cars had soul-- rear wheel drive V-8s and straight sixes-Detroit Iron. A far cry from the wimpy, over priced, tin and plastic machines of today. I dont do newer cars-I drive 73 Nova as a daily driver these days.

Other past blasts:

Seeing Wolfman Jack in person at the Drop-in dance. Surfer-Lowrider-Streetracer cultural and philisophical rivalries. Football season-good excuse to stay out late on Fri. nights. All the local eateries and stores--Thriftymart, Hollys, Taco Tio, Tommys, Boys Mkt.. Clarks, Folbs, Food Giant, A&W, Allied Auto, United Hardware. Independent Lumber, The Green Dragon headshop, Chaffee Ford, Kenneth Chevrolet, Prince Chrysler--How about that new Roadrunner?

Time, time, time, see whats become of me. Bob C. 73

This Remembrance from Patricia Pino VanPatten HHS 72

Early 70's Hawthorne
First let me start by saying I am so proud to be from a town who still today brings people and places back together, what a wonderful town we lived in.

I lived on Birch between 116th & 118th street. I remember going to Sears and Penneys in Inglewood to shop with my Mom on the weekends and stopping at the Top's for a chocolate malt on the way home. Walking to HHS every day and stopping by Taco Tio or going to the Plaza to watch the King (Oh how we loved Elvis). I went to St. Joseph elementary school and would walk to the Big Donut on Imperial and Birch at lunch to get one of their great burritos (Remember those anyone?) I'd take Patti Casey with me sometimes and we'd share.

I remember Mrs. Strahan, my Spanish teacher wearing a bright Green Sweater and Purple pants to class one day (what an odd combination, I thought). I remember Mr. Quesenberry giving a speech one day about how he was always there for us and if we ever had any questions to ask him. At that point John Perez stuck up his hand and Mr. Quesenberry told him to put his hand down. I, being as stubborn (or stupid) as I was, put up my hand and told Mr. Quesenberry that he had just given a big speech about helping us and he was contradicting himself by telling John to put his hand down. Needless to say, I was sent to the counselors office and Mr. Quesenberry dismissed me from his class, permanently! And I thought he was such a nice man, who'd a thought? Oh well, John, you still owe me one, huh?

I remember ditching class one day with my friend Maria and Margie, taking the bus and going to Grand. The three of us were waiting at the bus stop to get back home along with a group of three other girls we didn't know when Danny in his infamous VW comes around the corner just then. I yelled "DANNY" the other girls yelled at the same time yelled "DANNY" and Danny being the gentleman he was (HA) of course stops to pick us up. He had a friend with him in the car and we all needed a ride home so we (all six girls) jumped into the VW with Danny and his friend. Thanks Danny for the ride!

I remember Ben's Market on Freeman and 118th. My Mom would send me to the store with a note to buy her cigarettes. I remember tracing the notes so when I needed to buy a pack, Ben wouldn't question me, he never did but he always looked at me kind of funny when I went in with the forged documents. I wonder if he knew??? To this day, I wish he would have said something maybe I wouldn't be smoking today. Oh well, that's another story.

To all my classmates at HHS, I wish you well and hope your memories of Hawthorne are as good as mine.

Patricia Pino VanPatten
Class of 1972

This Remembrance from Clay Jordan HHS 69

Passing Time
After attending the 30 year reunion of the Class of 69 I was sobered by the fact that some of us will not be at the 40th, nor any after. Many at the 30th knew each other much better than I ever knew any of them. Others knew less than I. The reunion was like a room of random mirrors...reflecting many sides of who we once were, removing those spectres and illusions of what we thought we were and clarifying our present esteem. I am caught between closure and melancholy. I have finally tasted the last remaining fruits of an aging tree and wish that I had eaten heartily when the tree was in its prime.

Clay Jordan Class of 69

This Remembrance from Lynn Gruber Chase HHS 59

Remembering the Early Days
The 1956-57 year at Hawthorne High School was a year of growth. I was a sophomore and the Baby Boomers were just a few years behind me. More class rooms were being built to accommodate the influx of youth soon to arrive. As Karen Kuehl recalled, some of our classes were in strange places. I remember having Geometry class in the photo lab, where we sat on the stainless steel sinks because there wasn't room for the number of chairs required to seat everyone. At the beginning of my Junior year English was in the model apartment in the home economics building.

When it rained (and it rained a lot that year) things got really messy. Huge mud puddles appeared all over the campus. Large wooden pallets were placed across them so students could get to classes. When stepped on, these pallets would tip and tilt threatening to toss us into the muck at any time.

We took these inconveniences in our stride because we could look forward to a real cafeteria and not just a snack bar. The girls were getting their very own gymnasium and a beautiful new library was being built. But the thing I looked forward to most was the swimming pool. My friends and I couldn't wait. We planned swim parties and eagerly awaited the scheduled opening that summer.

One day in English class Mr. Kirkpatrick mentioned that helicopter flights were booked up for months in advance to fly over the new pool once it was opened. He told us it was because there would be no roof on the pool dressing rooms. I thought he was joking. But lo and behold when the pool opened that following summer, I learned that it wasn't a joke. The dressing rooms were open to the sky above. Now I didn't notice helicopters flying over and after a few visits to the pool I didn't give it much more thought. There were four or five private booths and the toilet area and office were covered and that seemed to be all that was needed.

The only real problem I encountered was, that on a couple of occasions I had to hunt through the flower bed in front of the dressing room for my underpants. My friend Cathy Ferges had a habit of grabbing them while I was dressing and would toss them over the wall. I think the thing that annoyed me most about this trick was, she did it to me more than once. And I was never quick enough to do it to anyone else.

However, all that changed my senior year. That year I had Gym class the last period of the day. By that time of day all of the most commonly worn swim suit sizes had been worn by the previous classes and only the very small ones were left. I wore a twelve and could squeeze into a ten in a pinch. But that year I was often crowded into a size six or if I was lucky an eight. This meant that I generally walked in a semi crouch, holding the front up with one hand and tugging the back down with the other. Many were slimmer than me but many were also a good deal taller; therefore, others seemed to be afflicted with the same strange spinal condition.

Now that you have this lovely picture engraved on your mind, imagine trying to peel your self out of a wet suit several sizes too small. Remember Red Skelton pantomiming a lady pulling on her girdle?

Finally, I ask you to stretch your imagination just a little further, for I am nearly at the end of my story. One day after swimming class, as I stood in the dressing room under the open sky with a group of perhaps fifty or sixty other girls, peeling myself out of a wet, clingy swim suit, I glanced up. There above me looking down, upon this group of half naked maidens, were two men on the telephone poles. I believe I yelled something coherent enough to get the others attention and pointed up to the top of the poles. It was immediate and complete chaos, young women with knees bound together by wet rubber bands were desperately hobbling and scrambling for cover. I believe one of the single person dressing booths held no less than eleven girls.

This memory has stayed with me through all the years. I have related it to others in the past but only those who recall the roofless dressing rooms of our old Alma Mater have found it credible. After all this time I can laugh at it and I hope you've enjoyed sharing it.
Lynn Gruber Chase

This Remembrance from Beverly Wilson from Alta Loma CA

Remembering the South Bay
My grandmother lived in Hawthorne from 1944 until 1972. My cousins lived in Hawthorne and later in Inglewood. We lived in E. Los Angeles in the early fifties and visited Hawthorne often.

My brothers and I couldn't wait to go to grandmas. Before all the freeways it would take two hours to get from E. Los Angeles to Hawthorne. We would count gas stations and repeatedly ask "are we there yet". We knew we were close when we could see the "Big Donut" on Imperial Hwy. My grandmother's house was on Eucalyptus Ave., just one block from Imperial. I remember walking with my cousins to the little store, which was on the corner of Eucalyptus and Imperial.

I'll never forget the "Plaza Theatre". I can still see all us kids gathered on one row holding hands as we were terrified watching "Them".

Occasionally, my mom and I would take the bus to downtown Los Angeles and then catch the streetcar all the way to Hawthorne. What a memory! What I would have given to have grown up in the South bay. I remember catching the bus and going to the beach with my cousin or hanging out in Inglewood on Market St. My aunt worked at Grant's. I remember one family picnic at Centinela Park and swimming in their big pool. I treasure those memories of a time long past when life was simpler and it didn't take much to entertain kids.

My relatives no longer live in South bay, but sometimes when I'm in the area I'll get off the freeway and drive through the old neighborhood and reminisce.

Thanks for the opportunity to share some precious memories, Beverly Wilson, Alta Loma, Ca.

This Remembrance from Michael Hagerty HHS 65,

Remembering Maryann Reynoso
Whenever I run across Maryann's name in the Class of '65 El Molino, I can't help remembering the day she brought a 45 record into Mr. Orrell's English class and asked him to play it. The tune? The original of "Goin' Outta My Head" which had just been released and of course became a classic. To our surprise he agreed; and the next thing you know we were all listening to it. The song was accompanied by Mary's numerous expressions of inner "wow". Not being much of a pop music fan, Mr. Orrell, I fear, had a sensation elsewhere.

All in all, it was a pleasant, though extraordinary, break from the routine of class and I doubt that anyone who was there and happens to hear it played even now can forget the name to which it will ever be associated.

A memory to smile about. Hope you're well and happy Maryann.

Mike Hagerty

This Remembrance from Jeanne Burk Carrillo HHS 69,

Hawthorne in the 60's
The best memories are shared ones. I grew up in two areas of Hawthorne. The first was 122nd st near Felton and the other was 119th Place near Aviation.

I remember when it cost a dime to take the bus to downtown Inglewood. Joanne DeBry, Joy Smith and I would go there alone at age 9 or 10. We would eat burritos at the little hotdog stand at the bottom of the hill where Sears Roebuck was in Inglewood.We would go to Grants dimestore and the movie theatre.

I remember my first job was at Grants, I made $1.65 an hour. Thought I was rich!! We would ride our stingray bikes to Del Aire park and watch the boys play baseball.

I went to Sepulvada Elementary and had the biggest crush on Mike Mahr; was dying for my first bra and would've given anything to be allowed to shave my legs.

In 1968-69 at HHS, I never went to PE, I ditched everyday.... Ms. Likens absolutely hated me. She actually allowed me to jump on the trampoline a couple of days to get a "D" in PE so I could graduate. I am still a spectator.

Living for Friday night, looking for guys with cool cars. Lowered Impalas and 8 track tapes with Smokey Robinson or the Temptations playing. The parties in Hermosa beach with a bunch of older people I didn't even know!! How crazy is that.

They were the best of times and ones I will treasure always. Life was so simple then.
Jeanne Burk Carrillo HHS 69

This Remembrance from Dale Tobiason HHS 70,

"Cruzin' Hawthorne Boulevard"

The infamous Boulevards of the "GREATER LOS ANGELES METROPOLITAN AREA" are but a distant memory.

"Cruzin" Van Nuys or Ventura Boulevard in the San Fernando Valley, Sunset Boulevard through West L.A., "The Strip" through Hollywood, Colorado Boulevard in Pasadena and Whittier Boulevard in the San Gabriel Valley, to name a few.

Growing up in the South Bay, the south west corner of L.A. County, we had "THE BOULEVARD" - Hawthorne Boulevard.

Hawthorne Boulevard runs from the Pacific Ocean, at old "MARINELAND" near Portugese Bend, north to Century Boulevard, where it turns into La Brea and La Brea continues into downtown L.A.

At one time "THE BOULEVARD" boasted the "LONGEST CONTINOUS PARKING LOT IN THE WORLD", as two rows of parking ran down the center median, from the Redondo/Torrance/Lawndale border to the Hawthorne/Lennox border at Imperial Highway. We would park on the center median and talk, "bench race" or watch everyone else or ??

Hawthorne Boulevard passes through or near, more than ten different cities, towns and communities. Palos Verdes, Palos Verdes Estates, Rolling Hills, Rolling Hills Estates, Walteria, Lomita, Torrance, Redondo Beach, Lawndale, Hawthorne and Lennox. At Century Boulevard, where it becomes La Brea, it then passes through the City of Inglewood.

I can remember hearing stories about "THE BOULEVARD" from the "WICH-STAND" ("WICH" - short for sandwich) to "MARINELAND", even before I could drive. There were a couple of "BOB'S BIG BOY" restaurants (one in Inglewood and one in Torrance), "TOMMY'S", next to the Standard station on the N/E corner of Imperial. At "TOMMY'S" you could get an order of fries, a brown paper lunch sack of greasy fries and a double with everything, so big you could hardly eat it. I can feel my arteries hardening now, just thinking about it.

The "LIGHTHOUSE", on the corner of Rosecrans Boulevard next to "BREEDLOVES USED CARS". Let us not forget the world famous "A & W DRIVE-IN" or the "A", as we called it. "TACO-TIO", is now just a memory. As legend has it, the BEACH BOYS "hung out" there and the "HAMBURGER STAND" referred to in the song "FUN, FUN, FUN" was reality "TACO_TIO". The Hawthorne Mall was the demise of this local landmark.

Also long gone is "BIGGIES" or "SKIPPYS", and later "GNG'S", the name depends on what generation is telling the story. It was a block south of El Segundo Boulevard, I believe it caught fire years ago, a "SIZZLER" replaced it.

The rivalries were many, as it cut through many cities and communities, all staking their claim to certain sections, as did numerous high schools. We all had our rivalries, vendettas, from city to city, school to school. Petty rivalries from the smallest communities and old ones that went back three or four generations.

There was Leuzinger, Hawthorne, Inglewood, Morningside and Torrance High. About seven miles to the west of Hawthorne was El Segundo High. There was Lawndale, Lennox and Aviation High, though they are gone. Within the BOULEVARD's influence was also Gardena, Narbonne, North Torrance, South Torrance and West Torrance High Schools. Redondo, Mira Costa, Palos Verdes, Rolling Hills and Miraleste High Schools.

Most of these are now just memories. Sure there is still "THE BOULEVARD", but most of the landmarks are gone, as are some of the schools and neighborhoods. Gone are "MONTY AND THE CRYSTALS", the original "BEACH BOYS', there are no more "BATTLE OF THE BANDS" or "DROP-INS" at the Memorial Center. Long gone is the "A", "TACO-TIO", "SKIPPYS/BIGGIES/GNG'S", "THE LIGHTHOUSE" and the "GUNGA-DEN".

And we are no longer "CRUZIN' THE BOULEVARD".

This Remembrance from Annette Cobb,

Memories of your past
It's easy to lose sight of yourself as time goes on. When was the last time you?

Jumped rope
Ate Oreo's at the park
Got wet in the sprinkler
Played on a swing
Walked barefoot to the store
Had a 4x4 at Baskin Robbins
Made a crank call
Laid on the lawn and looked up at the clouds
Played hopscotch
Talked to your best friend from 5th grade
Told your dad you love him
Watched Scooby Doo
Listened to "KISS ALIVE"
Built a sand castle
Kicked a soccer ball at Dana Field
Went to Manhattan Pier at midnight
Went to the Forum for a concert
pulled a 180 on a skateboard
Ate a Push UP (Orange)

Don't lose sight!
Annette Cessor-Cobb

This Remembrance from Mark Alan (Rabenold),

Memories of 1974
I recall the first days of the fall semester of 1974. It was my senior year and I was on the varsity basketball team. Generally, you got a "bye" for PE class in lieu of after school practice, but you still had to show up for PE and help out the coaches, etc. Anyway, another fellow and I were assigned to "toss towels" to the incoming freshman class and to break up the boredom of this task, we decided to attempt a "head trip" on these poor, scared, trusting souls.

This fellow and I spent the first day or so speaking loudly of the curse of "athlete's foot" that those poor unfortunates were about to contract from the shower stalls as we "tossed towels". The next day we spent excitedly propounding the absolute, undeniable prevention/cure for this common malady... yep! All you had to do was pee on your feet while you took your shower, blah, blah, blah.

You can imagine our delight along about day four as we sat in the towel cage and were informed by a fellow team-mate that darned near half the PE class was urinating on their feet in the showers! Coach Smith promptly set the freshmen straight and assigned us another job.

I also fondly remember entertaining Mrs. Mark's classes. I was a "TA" for her several times in '74 & '75 and Mother Mark and I would get into frequent "political" discussions that ran deep into the period until Mom realized what was happening - again - and she'd frown, smile, then scowl and say, "Hey you! Shut up! Just grade those papers or I'll fail you! Got it!" Then she'd turn to the class and bellow out, "Name, date, period, course title!"

Lastly, I remember those long walks home to Holly Glen on La Cienega (I believe) along the east side of the freeway towards 135th. I was a sophomore and had begun to delude myself that I had a pretty cool "walk". Too "cool" actually. I became engrossed in following the shadow my "walk" cast upon the sidewalk and marched right into a direction sign post. I knocked myself out for a couple of minutes. The screams of laughter from a group of homeward bound elementary school kids across the street greeted me upon my return from never-never land!

Mark Alan (Rabenold)
HHS class of 75
Oroville, Washington

This Remembrance from Michael Weiss,

Memories From The East Side
Life seemed a bit different on the East side of town in the 1970s.

I lived on 119th st. East of Prairie Ave and we all thought that the rich kids lived West of Hawthorne Bl and South of 120th. I remember the summers when all of us would walk along the Railroad tracks to Hawthorne High and pay to use the swimming pool. How hungry we would be after a long day of swimming. We would scrounge for change and go to the little store ( I think it had a big cow on the roof ) that was across the street from the school, on Inglewood Ave.
I remember when we would, "wall walk" in the summertime as well. That was when we would climb onto a wall that separated two streets from each other and walk the length of the entire block. Oh, the things that we would discover. The fruit trees (peaches, pomegranate, kumquat ) the dogs that would attack us... coming across a section of chain link, forcing us to dismount and run across someone's yard. What a thrill.
Taking the number 10 bus to El Porto beach. Transferring at El Segundo High School to another bus. Never knowing that my future wife was going to El Segundo High! Never knowing that she lived on the same street as I!! WOW!
Playing, " pull the rope" a game where one group of us would stand directly across the street from each other and when a car was coming, we would pretend to be pulling a rope across the street. How we would laugh when the car would screech to a stop to avoid hitting a rope that did not exist.
The Palace Market on the N/E corner of Prairie and Imperial. The Denny's (not the chain) BBQ on the N/W corner of Prairie and Imperial. How we would look forward to when the circus was in town and we would all line the streets of Prairie to watch the clowns, elephants, and all of the circus folks make their way to the Forum.
Kite flying with real kites and tails made from torn sheets. Putting razor blades in the tail and trying to cut the strings of the other kites. I could go on and on. I always thought that my childhood was kind of crappy but after visiting this site and thinking back. I realize that I had some great times as a kid.

Mike Weiss
Class of 1980

This Remembrance from Betty Kean Rodriguez,

Growing up on Sundale
We all grew up on Sundale Avenue, down the street from the HHS Football Field.

The neighborhood was full of kids, all around the same age. There were the Haskells, the Mattesons, the Thevenys, the Arias', the Riggs, the Griffins, the Hoods, the Cusacs, the Hoods, the Campbells, the Slaughters, and so many more. It was the late 50's and early 60's.

We all went to Eucalyptus Elementary, before the Park was finished and there were only vacant lots on Broadway. We spent a lot of time at the Dairy (I remember RC Cola and Corn Nuts) and Rays Market.

The kids in our neighborhood spent a lot of time in Inglewood. The Cusacs had a Bakery (and we always got cakes after holidays) and the Mattesons had a Pet Store. We'd all stop in before a movie (at any one of the three theaters) and then afterwards go have french fries and a coke at JJ Newberrys on Market St. Sometimes, instead of taking the bus home, we'd walk down Inglewood Ave. and check all the phone booths for money. We'd get a malt at the hamburger stand on Inglewood and Century.

My favorite memories were our summers together. It seems no one ever went on vacation. We'd have Koolaid Stands, make skateboards out of rollerskates, take adventure hikes down the railroad tracks, or ride our bikes around the HHS Campus and get chased out of there. We once built a treehouse (without a tree) in the Hoods front yard. The cops told us we'd have to tear it down, because we didn't have a building permit. Another time, the Stromberg family was getting ready to remodel their house. They needed all the plaster knocked off, so they called over all the kids, gave 'em a hammer, and told 'em to have at it! What a blast! We'd play Kick the Can till 10 at night. Oh yea, the time we built a dummy, poured ketchup all over it, and threw it in front of cars coming down Sundale. We'd run and hide cause the driver would be angry and try to catch us. Fun stuff.

We had the best friends in the world.

Betty Kean-Rodriguez HHS69

This Remembrance from the Ol' Coach, Hal Chauncey,

1953 Cougar Football Revisited
It was the season of 1953. we were having a very successful season. Our quarterback, Joe Contestabile, was having a great year passing and completing touchdown passes.

A great QB from Santa Monica, named Ronnie Knox held the national interscholastic passing record for touchdown passes in a season at 32. We were playing Inglewood at Sentinel field. Joe had 30 TD passes going into that game.

He called a play where he faked to two backs, & dropped back to pass. Danny Rich, our fullback made a super fake, like he had the ball, and dove over the pile of linemen. Phil Murphy went down the field on his pass route, and cut towards the goal posts. He was 20 yards behind all the Inglewood defenders. Joe tossed a 40-yard pass, which was right on target.

Danny had made such a great fake that the head linesman thought he had the ball. He was blowing his whistle while running towards the pile---he looked up as the ball was in the air, on the way to Murphy. He just stopped--looked towards the heavens for forgiveness. When an official blows his whistle, the ball is dead--the play stops. That pass was the one to break Ronnie Knox record--and give Joe the Record for the most TD's in a season. The referee came over to our bench--head down and apologized profusely to cap & me--but there was nothing that could be done.

We went on to score a play or two later. Joe came out of the game laughing and came over to cap, & me and said, "boy , we sure faked him out of his jock, didn't we !!!!!!"

Joe went on to complete 32 TD passes in one season- -- holding the national high school interscholastic passing record-that was eventually surpassed by Pat Hayden of Bishop Amat, HS.

Ol' Coach

This Remembrance from Vicki Dicken, Class of 1966

Hawthorne Recollections
My family moved from Minnesota in 1950, we lived at the "Yukon Trailer Lodge" across the street from the Hawthorne Dog Pound.

In a couple of years we moved to York and Broadway, across the street from Northrup, where both of my parents worked as aircraft mechanics. I often think of "Pinky the Cop" who always pulled up in front of our house, turned off his 3-wheel motorcycle and talk to us kids in the neighborhood, with his red hair and red face we never did know his real name.

While I went to Washington Elementary school my older sister, Linda went to Intermediate. As a family, we would go to the "Home Cafe" on Hawthorne Blvd, we would take long drives along the coast and through PV, we often would take a blanket and go to Hawthorne Park and have a picnic (we always had bologna sandwiches, Pork n' Beans, potato chips, and Nehi or Bireley's orange pop). We would take the train to Inglewood to shop, or we would buy at the local Chaney's, Dexter's, Red Goose shoes, or Mastin's Rexall Drug Store.

We went to the Plaza theater (we understood that the Plaza used to be an Opera house, thus the balconies on either side of the stage) on the weekends, and I was there the day the screen was ripped. It was The Fly at the part when you first see the Fly's head, it sounded like a gun shot as a table knife ripped through the Fly's head. It scared the hell out of us and the movie was stopped and we had to hear a lecture from Mr Mushmore (theater owner) Every time I went to the "Rat Palace" from then on all I could do was stare at the wound in the middle of the screen.

We shopped for groceries at the Wonder Market or Roth's (Union Bank of California now), and later at the Food Giant, until it burned down. We used to sit on a bench in the Broadway Circle and watch the "old men" feed the Pigeons from the bus bench at Broadway and Hawthorne Blvd.

Life was good in the "50's" in Hawthorne, I think that there wasn't a day of summer vacation that I didn't grab a towel, and a dime and walk the railroad tracks to the high school to go to the swimming pool.

My sister went to HHS and graduated in three years in 1959, meanwhile we moved to Doty and El Segundo and I attended Yukon Intermediate School for 6th, 7th, and 8th grade. All of my friends there went on to Leuzinger High School, but my family move just a block from Hawthorne and I found myself a lonely Hodad girl in a school full of Surfers. From the beginning I had problems, at the first dance of my Freshman year, the Howdy Hop, I got caught by the assistant girls Vice-Principal, Miss Selz, smoking in the bathroom and got suspended for three days! Welcome to Hawthorne High... I remember one day in October 1962 when we heard the news that Kennedy had ordered a blockade of Cuba and that it could instigate a nuclear war with Russia and Khruschev, it was scary, and on campus we talked about the possibility of an uncertain future.

I ditched school quite often and November 22, 1963 was no exception. I had just sat down and was watching my favorite soap, As the World Turns, when Walter Cronkite interrupted with the news of Kennedy's being shot while in Dallas. I never felt more vulnerable as an individual and as an American, it felt as though we would be immediately bombed and taken over by Russia. I'll never forget that day!

I dropped out of high school in 1964, got my GED in 1981, went to El Camino, got my AA degree in accounting in 1985, got a job in 1986 at CCH Computax and have been there ever since. My mother still lives in Hawthorne, my father died in 1976, my sister lives in San Jose, and my 20 year old son and I live in Lawndale, (just barely, 147th St and Inglewood Ave)

So much for my recollections, except to say, I love the city of Hawthorne, it was a great place to grow up in.
Hodads Rule!!
Vicki Dicken (would have been class of '66)

This Remembrance from Greg Fraser, Class of 1969

Boys Shower Room Stories
I remember when in 1969, the year I graduated, I somehow got dubious honor of becoming Coach Bunyard's shower check guy. Now in P.E. we were told that we needed to take a shower at the end of the period, but some guys didn't want to! So to enforce the rule, you were required to step out of the shower, and go to the "towel cage" and get your name checked! If you were not wet enough, you would be told to get wet at least, if you don't want to shower! Many guys would just setp in, get wet, and make the check!

Another P.E. rememberance, Bunyard was a very cool coach! Sometimes guys would cut up, and try to get his goat, but "Bunny" as we called him, was very cool all the time, and no one EVER saw him lose it! Until one day, a guy did it, I remember his name even! It was Sarafin Martinez. Somehow, he really got to Bunyard, and Bunny grabbed him and slammed Sarafin into the reinforced glass outside the coach's office! It made a dent in the reinforced wiring right where Sarafin's head hit! We all saw the broken glass for some days before it was fixed, but not until some one took a magic marker, and painted Sarafin's face on the glass !!! Everyone laughed so hard for a long time, and I bet everyone who was there that day remembers!

Greg Fraser 1969

This Remembrance from Sharon Willis-Quesnel, Class of 1972

More High School Memories
Going surfing in any weather with Pam Cleeton. She would come into my spanish class with a bogus note from a counselor and get me excused from class. 26 here we come!
The guys would push me into waves and I would surf...
You guys spoiled me...I never learned to paddle into a wave!
Remember those canvas mats! the first boogie boards!
The year Pam Cleeton parked her car, a green 1940 something... in Senior square.
We also go busted in that car after a night at 26 Street, We had about 15 people in the car! It was one of those with the big back seat. I was in trouble as my Dad was called from the Lennox Sheriff Dept...we were in El Porto..that was sheriff country. I was 15 and they took me into jail! I had told him we were going to see "Woodstock"... Pam talked him into letting me go. Remember when the cops would come to 26 Street to bust the party and we would all run onto the beach! We always knew the cops would not run in the sand.

Russ Jacobsen class of 1960, thanks for the history on 26! What history that place has. Remember the parking lot...upper and lower. Okeefanokee the pollywog swamp place on Aviation. Don Pike used to take me to ride motorcycles in those fields, where all the industrial stuff is now.

Hollyglen Park, those first kisses under the turtle.
The little league and middle league games in Hollyglen and eating from the trailer that parked on the street. Before girls were aloud to play.

I lived in Hollyglen and we could catch the bus on Rosecrans to the beach or ride our bikes. Potato Salad for a quarter at Lees on the strand. Parties at my house on Judah Ave. in Hollyglen...Big ones. I have to tell you I would call the police on my own parties just for crowd control...On nights we didn't want to party we had to turn off the lights and pretend we weren't home. We had the house as my Mom had died in my sophomore year and in my Senior year, my Dad rented our the house to my brother and the "boys" who graduated in 71....What was Dad thinking????
My brother Greg and his buds George Alvarez, Tom D'Errico, Shambaugh.

Trying out for Varsity Cheer Leader and not getting voted in as I was told later I was wanted as the Drill Team Captain my senior year.
Those painful lessons of High School. And the joys...

Sharon Willis
Class of 1972

This Remembrance from Chris Prewitt, Class of 1967

Another Danny Fix Class Story
I remember one day in Mr. Fix?s speech class someone was giving a speech on ?SWEAT?. This was to be a speech of about 3-5 minutes. About 2 minutes into the speech; talking about how men perspire and women dew; the speaker was making the statement ?wouldn?t it be a much nicer statement for a man to say ?I perspire? instead of ?I SWEAT??. From the back of the room came the statement; ?Yea, but who wants a woman to say; ?I do??. Needless to say the speech wasn?t finished and the class was chaos.

Chris Prewitt
Class of 1967

This Remembrance from Susan Rea Hager, Class of 1972

Danny Fix's Class
A day I will always remember in Mr. Danny Fix's class:

I was in Mr. Fix's speech class and our assignment was to go up to the podium while Mr. Fix would tape record our project. Anything that was a hobby or something we were interested in doing we could talk about. Well, I did not prepare for the presentation nor did I have anything to talk about. He would interview each of us one at a time while the others sat outside. When my turn came he started asking me the questions. I quickly decided my subject would be cooking spaghetti sauce, although I did not have a clue how to do it. My mom is a great Italian cook. Each question he would ask - what do you add to the sauce - I would answer I didn't know, my mom would do that. How long would you simmer the sauce for - "I don't know, my mom would do that. Well he finally asked "Well what would you do then. I answered "Boil the water". He laughed so hard. And I was so embarrassed that I purposely missed the next day because I knew he was going to play back all of the tapes for the class. Well leave it to Mr. Fix - he was smart and waited until I returned to his class two days later to play it. I never heard the class laugh so hard - I will never forget that day nor Mr. Fix. He was a great teacher because if you were too embarrassed to speak at the beginning of the year, he sure wouldn't let you be embarrassed by the end of the year.

Susan Rea Hager
Class of 1972

This Remembrance from Bob Veach, Class of 1972

Locker Room Antics
Who remembers the numbers stenciled on the wall facing the train tracks outside the boys locker room?

Boys Locker Room After changing into our PE shorts and white T- shirt, we were instructed to stand at attention by "our number" which had been assigned and wait for our PE teacher to arrive. This is what was explained to me and the class by Coach Hal Chauncey on the first day of our freshman year in 1968.

We were also advised of "towel exchange" and how the towel was our personal responsibility. Everybody had to shower after PE. If we lost our towel, we could "dry off by sunlight" according to Coach Chauncey.

I will never forget the first day of PE. After class, we all went to take showers. Afterward, I was standing by my locker when Bob Tague came running up, dripping wet and wearing nothing but his towel. He wanted to know what the coach said we should do after our shower. Far be it for me to leave that one alone, so I told him to go outside and stand by his number.

He took off towards the door. Upon getting to the open doorway, he saw other students walking by, boys AND girls. It was then that he realized the joke played on him. He walked back to his locker to change, calling me a few names as he passed.

Bob Veach
Class of '72

This Remembrance from Russ Jacobsen, Class of 1960

Early 26th Street
As you know , most of us COUGARS went to 26th St. which was brought on by, I guess, the older crowd. Many went to EL PORTO. You know the place. By "Doc and Bills" on the STRAND. Of course us "rebel rousers" thought that there was a better place. The old crowd that I speak of was the class of 57, 58, and 59, so we thought that we would find a place of our own; us lowly Sophomore people. We went through "HELL" with older brothers and sisters because we weren't with the "in crowd". But how the hell could you be with the "in crowd" as a SOPH or a frosh, ( minor punctuation for the frosh ) because you were invisible to the human eye. But we set the tone for all good cougars to come.
26 St. WHAT A PLACE! Relationships were born, trashed, bashed, and a lot "came together", which leads me to my story!

One night in 1960 there was a group of us that used 26th St. as an alternative bedroom. We noticed that the 26th St. sign on 26th and HIGHLAND was a little loose. We decided that we could help the community around 26th St., and rid them of this eye sore, so we picked this thing up "A Concrete Post" and put it in the back of a truck. My gosh.... it ended up in our back yard! Well it looked so good that we couldn't throw this thing away. It was a "concrete post"! I should say that the street sign, "HIGHLAND & 26TH ST" was printed on this cement post. Well, we proceeded to dig this hole for "posterity", you know? In our back yard. My brother, me, and the other culprits. Well this 26th St. sign looked really cool by our back door. I must say that my brother and I had a "room away from the main house", and our parents were gullible to a degree, so they see this "pyramid" rising up beside our door. 26th ST. AND HIGHLAND. They didn't say a whole lot. We told them that they were putting new street signs on the Blvd. and these things were there for the taking.....they let it go at that.
One night a little later in our lives it seems that these friends of ours were working in a prominent restaurant in Manhattan Beach. Well one of these guys got PO'd. at one of the guys working at this establishment, so they ripped the carburetor off this guys car. Well he called the POLICE and it seemed that the "rippee" had a good idea who did this dasterly deed. I had been on a DATE with my honey (almost 38 yrs now) well, the MANHATTAN BEACH POLICE DEPT shows up at our cool little room in our back yard. They came walking into our little heaven and my brother was with them as well as a couple of prominent athletes. I was laying in the bed after my date with the GREATEST GIRL in the world, asleep. THEY STOPPED! They said, "WHOS HE?" This was "THE POLICE". They had a BIG impact on our lives at that time. Well they got my ATTENTION real quick. Was HE involved in this caper? "No", they said. BUT, the thing they were looking at was that 26th St. sign.... Plus, maybe the WOODEN FIRE HYDRANT that we had beside the door, or the "CITY JAIL SIGN" that we had OVER the door. "WHERE DID ALL THIS STUFF COME FROM?", they said. JEEZ OFFICER , I DON'T KNOW WHERE THIS CAME FROM! We just got it from our buddys. I have no idea what these other people have been doing tonight bbbut I'm innnnnoooccennt, PLEASE!
As it turned out all was well, and the 26th St. sign was there until we went into the service! Geez, I wish we still had that DAMNED SIGN , or post, as it was. It was cool. It was from THE place where all the COOL PEOPLE came to have a good time. Most of the guys that were on the 1959 C.I.F team, came over to listen to tunes in "THE ROOM", and were just as pleased as we were with the "COUP"! "The 26th St Sign"....I wish I knew who had it today!! It's probably buried at this time!


A lot of you guys and gals out there might remember a song called "A SUMMER PLACE". Thats our song. ITS A NEVER ENDING THING WITH OUR YOUTH, that was probably one of the best times, this century has ever seen!

This Remembrance from Joe D'Errico's (HHS 59) son....another Joe D'Errico

Late 60's Memories
This site brings back alot of memories for me. My father, also Joe D'Errico, was HHS class of 1959.
I have memories as a small child during the mid to late 60's, my dad would load my mom and his 5 kids into the car and off to Hawthorne Blvd. we would go on many Satrurday nights. Some nights Taco Tio or Clancy's, but always Fosters Freeze. I have fond memories of corndogs at Clancy's. I can remember my father holding me up in front of the window at the Pizza Show so I could watch while they flipped the dough into the air.
There was nothing that would get you in the Christmas mood faster than the decorations along the Blvd. My dad would wake me up early on many Saturday mornings and take me on his errands in Hawthorne which almost always included a stop at Tuckers shoe shine booth, Those were the days! My father passed away in 1976 after a short illness, I was 13 years old. Your site has brought back some great memories of my father and my childhood in Hawthorne, Thank you!

Joe D'Errico

This Remembrance from Bob Rierdan, Class of 1961

Freshman Fears
Just flashed-back to the day during the summer before we began our freshman year, when we had to go and be assigned our locks and lockers.

There was Bruce Hoover, myself and two others that I cannot picture right now. What I remember most, besides standing in line at the student store window, was the advise that we all gave each other as we walked to the school. Advice about our impending entrance into the world of "semi-adulthood." Bruce told us, "Always walk with one or two other guys, but not more than four." I guess hazing was harder if a freshman had some pals as witnesses. Too many in a group would look like a gang and you'd really be looking for it!
Some other advice had to do with not making eye-contact with seniors. Try to look confident, but not too confident. Do what the senior asks, but be ready to run at all times. When I look back on those early days I remember my feelings were a mix of wide-eyed enthusiasm and gut-wrenching fear.
The only real hazing experience I had was one during the first day of PE class, we brought our new gym clothes and shoes to put into our new lockers. The coach (Pfeiffer) as I remember, was showing us the football field and the track, etc. Some big senior was there; seeing my brand new white Keds, he grabbed them and threw them into a mud puddle next to the track. I was crushed as I dragged my new shoes out of the mud. That was a turning point in my school career; I expected the coach to severely punish this ape, but as he watched the scene he said something to the ape like, "Now, now Blank," and that was it...
In the lower grades, at that time, your teacher was a parent figure. He or she was with your class all day. The kids became their responsibility. My lesson that day was that in high school, squealing was not only frowned upon, it didn't do any good! For the next couple years I followed the advice of my scared friends; " ready to run at all times"


This Remembrance from Russ Jacobsen, Class of 1960

Breaking into the Studios
Everybody talks about the cars that were on the Blvd, but did you guys ever go to the movie studios?

Well, that was a great place to kind of live out your fantasies, by sneaking in and just playing havoc with the guards that were there.

One night about 6 or 7 of us sneaked in and were playing around the lagoon area and "Jerry Cross" unscrewed a huge light bulb and decided to throw it into the lagoon. Well it went "boom"! All of a sudden we hear a motor scooter start up, well here came the guard! We all spread out through the jungle area and waited for him to get done with his little search. This was a little tense because we had heard that they would take you to jail if you were caught. Well his motor scooter sounded like it was going back to the rest area or whatever, so we got on the back road out of there toward the little league ballfield where we came in. We were walking along and all of a sudden here he comes down the road. Needless to say, we started hauling ass towards our escape point, but when we reached our spot, (the guard is hauling, by the way), and a couple of the guys had trouble getting over the fence (barbwire at the top of the fence) so Cal Kappen, Jim Hoel, and myself dove down in the ditch besides the road and waited for this yahoo to go by. It seemed like an eternity and our lives passed before our eyes, because we knew what our dads would do to us if we got caught! Thank the good guy whoever he is for letting us live. We had a world of moments at the studios.

Here's another Remembrance from the Ol' Coach

A Ron Mix Story
Ron Mix tells this one on himself -------

Ron, as you know, is in the National Football League Hall of Fame; a 12 year All Pro from the San Diego Chargers!!!!
In 1953 we played Paso Robles, at Paso Robles, in the CIF playoffs. After the game the Paso Robles student body invited the team to a dance in their gym. They had girls for our guys to dance with. Ron was always a very polite kid, and was a very neat dresser. He was always the last player out of the locker room. The Coaching Staff, Cap and I, reminded the kids to be very polite and courteous to the girls. We reminded them to always say something nice to the girl after they danced with her. Well as usual, the quarterback got the nicest looking girl---he was the first out of the locker room, etc. Well, Ron being the last one out, had a young lady that out weighed him by 40 pounds---and was 4ft eight inches tall. Ron made the best out of the situation and kept thinking about what the coaches had said---to say something nice to her at the end of the dance. Well, here comes the last dance---"good night sweetheart"---- and he was really thinking hard about what to say. Finally the music stopped and Ron returned the young lady to her friends- - - and said to her, "you know for a fat girl, you sure don't sweat very much!!!"

Ol' Coach---Hal Chauncey

This remembrance is from Rick Pierson, Class of 86

Ethnicity and HHS
Going to Hawthorne High in the early to mid 80's was a lesson in cultural diversity. I know allot of our fellow alumni from the late 50's and early 60's knew HHS as a predominantly white middle class school with a few low riders here and there but that was about all. If you went to HHS in the 80's you were exposed to a multitude of different ethnic and cultural personalities. You had a eclectic mix of white, African American, Latino, Asian and pacific islander. Now you might think that this diverse of a mix would cause racial tensions and it did at some times. But more often than not you saw what this country could be some day if racial lines and divisions are erased. When we came together as a student body for whatever reason (sports, social functions, educational matters, student body government) there seemed to be a sort of mutual understanding and respect for each other no matter what color you were. I was especially fortunate to be a member of the Freshmen Football team in 1982 that went undefeated and unscored on. That's right, unscored on! No team ever scored a touchdown or field goal against our team in 9 games. We were a group of guys from different ethnic backgrounds that came together one season and put aside our racial differences that the media and our parents had drilled into our heads as children and worked towards one common goal - winning with school pride. I think we learned more about each other as people rather than black, white, Latino, Asian, or pacific islander. I have great memories of those days and each one of those guys are like brothers to me to this very day. I also learned that if you treat people with respect and kindness no matter what color they are you will get it back.

Notes from the Pen,
Ricky Pierson (A.K.A. Doctor Death)
Class of 86'

This remembrance is from Chris Prewitt, Class of 67

You're Not Old Unless You Can Remember..
You're Not Old Unless You Can Remember

  • Being sent to the drugstore to test vacuum tubes for the TV.
  • When Kool-Aid was the only other drink for kids, other than milk and sodas.
  • When there were two types of sneakers for boys.
  • When boys couldn't wear anything but leather shoes to school.
  • When it took five minutes for the TV to warm up.
  • When all your friends got their hair cut at the kitchen table.
  • When nearly everyone's mom was at home when the kids got there.
  • When nobody owned a pure-bred dog.
  • When a dime was a decent allowance, and a quarter a huge bonus.
  • When you'd reach into a muddy gutter for a penny.
  • When girls neither dated nor kissed until late high school, if then.
  • When your mom wore nylons that came in two pieces.
  • When all your teachers wore either neckties or had their hair done, everyday.
  • When you got your windshield cleaned, oil checked, and gas pumped, without asking, for free, every time. And you got trading stamps to boot!
  • When laundry detergent had free glasses, dishes or towels hidden inside the box.
  • When any parent could discipline any kid, or feed him, or use him to carry groceries, and nobody, not even the kid, thought a thing of it.
  • When it was considered a great privilege to be taken out to dinner at a real restaurant with your parents.
  • When they threatened to keep kids back a grade if they failed--and did!
  • When being sent to the principal's office was nothing compared to the fate that awaited a misbehaving student at home.
  • When women were called, "Mrs. John Smith," instead of their own name.

This remembrance is from Karen Graham Kuehl, Class of 59

Cougar Cub Reporter Antics
I have been thinking about this for years and thought some of the classmates would like to hear this story.

Before the completion of the building that was to house the El Molino and Cougar Staffs in 1956, classes were held in the cramped windowless wardrobe/props room in Nyman Hall. The "sports desk", manned by Bill Wingo and Ralph Hesterman was set up in the restroom adjacent to the wardrobe room.
One day, Miss McGuinty stepped out for a few minutes after giving her cub reporters writing projects to keep them busy till she returned. Ralph and Bill, however, found some old hats and a couple of wooden swords in the prop box and performed a very dramatic and hilarious duel with Ralph backing Bill into the restroom. Suddenly, we heard a splash, the toilet flush and Bill yelling, "Help me", then silence. Ralph appeared in the doorway, hat in hand, sword across his chest and announced that he had flushed Bill down the toilet. We all had a great laugh at their performance.
Miss McGuinty returned and asked where Bill was and, of course, we all said he was in the restroom. But just before class was over, there was a knock at the outside door. I opened it and there stood a very sweaty disheveled Bill with his top hat crumpled on his head. He staggered in and said "It sure is a long walk from the hyperion!"

To this day, I can't figure out how he got out of that small crowded room without one of us seeing him open the door!

Karen (Graham) Kuehl (HHS 59)

More Remembrances from "The Ol' Coach", Hal Chauncey

1954 Football
It was the 1954 Football season. Our first game was with Puente HS, and Cap (Dave Capelouto) and I thought we had a pretty good team--but we didn't know how good, and would find out after the first game. We whupped them badly and everything worked as planned. We went through the rest of the season undefeated. About mid-season I went into Mr. Nyman's office one morning, and talked to him about the season and possible CIF playoffs. I asked him if we got to the finals in the playoffs, if he could get El Camino field for the final playoff game. He thought it was a great idea and would work on it. We had a tough game coming up that Friday, so in our pre-game preparations we told the team about getting El Camino for the final playoffs. (at that time this was something new and it stoked the guys)-------they busted their buns and killed our opponents that night! So Monday a.m. I talked to Mr. Nyman about his promise to get El Camino----he told me that Dr. Garner felt we should use Leuzinger HS Field. Plunk! I was really shocked and explained that we had told the team of his promise to get El Camino if we got into the finals. This would be a real psychological letdown to these kids who had worked their buns off to get to the finals. He said that he felt that Dr. Garner wanted us to use the facilities we had available to us! Cap and I were furious! I asked Mr. Nyman if I could talk to Dr. Garner about the importance of this. He said no, I don't think so. After much discussion with Cap, I decided to hell with it, I'm going to call Dr. Garner---who I had known for some time. I called him and asked if he would meet me at Mastin's drug store in 15 minutes. He said, "sure". So we met and I explained the situation (at that point, Cap and I were so disappointed and upset that we didn't care if we got fired or not). Jeff (Dr. Garner) said, " I think it would be a great thing for the district and the community to go to El Camino for the finals." Well, I had to eat a little crow and told him of my conversation with Mr. Nyman, and that I had asked permission to speak with you about the matter and was told that it would be better if I didn't. He said , "don't worry about it, I'll handle it". So about 1:30 pm. I got a phone call to report to Mr. Nyman's office ASAP. Well---here it comes, I thought I was going to get canned---and I really didn't care because I felt the kids would think I had betrayed them. I walked into Mr. Nyman's office and he looked up and smiled and said, " I just talked with Dr. Garner and we thought it was I good idea to get El Camino for the playoffs". What a relief! We told the team that afternoon that they had fulfilled their part of the bargain and now we were going to El Camino for their finals! We played Henderson, Nevada that night. We ran the opening kickoff back for a touchdown. We kicked off to them and held them so they had to punt. We ran the punt back for a touchdown. We again kicked off to them, held them, and on our first offensive play, Gene Clement ran 50 yards for another TD. We had 21 points and had only ran one offensive play! Anyway so goes the saga of good old HHS.

All for now Cougars, The Ol' Coach.

More Football Remembrances from "The Coach", Hal Chauncey

Locker Room Items
Hi Cougars !

Joe Contestabile vs. Burr Sweeney !

One day at track practice, Burr Sweeney accidentally hit Joe with a 12 pound shotput. It made Joe so mad, he chased Burr all over the campus----but he never caught him. Luckily, Joe was not injured badly.

Football vs. Mira Costa

In a game, in 1953, Joe Contestabile, our QB, called a play that he was to hand the ball off to our fullback, Burr Sweeney. Burr was to run the ball over left guard. Joe got the ball from Bill Cooper, our center, and turned to hand the ball to Burr. Burr just stood there smiling, with his hands on his hips, looking at Joe. Joe just turned and carried the ball over the guard, where the ball was supposed to go. We immediately took Burr out of the game, and when he got to the sideline, we asked Burr what happened? He said, "oh coach, I just wanted to see what he'd do !!!" We won the game in spite of this !

More Football Remembrances from Coach Hal Chauncey

Early Football Happenings
Hi Cougars !

We were playing Morningside, at El Camino, in 1956 . The Morningside coach had this habit of sending in more players than was allowed, when a team got down near the goal line. Mike Gillespie was the QB. As he came up to the line, he looked over the defense, hesitated, looked over at us, put his hands up to let us know there was some doubt as to what to do ! We had not picked up on his concern. So we just gave him the "go get'em" signal. He went back to the line of scrimmage and ran our "outside belly" play and Gary Kimbrell scored. Mike came off the field and up to me and said "Coach, thats a heck of a defense--- an 8 man line and 5 linebackers " ( your only allowed 11 players on the field ).

Harvard vs. Hawthorne-- in the fog !

We were playing a CIF football playoff game at El Rancho stadium in West LA when we took the field for pre-game warm ups, the fog was very thick, but was about 150 ft. off the ground. The game started, and the fog dropped. We couldn't see 10 ft. We told Joe Contestabile to run a series that had a lot of faking in the backfield. The Harvard players didn't have a clue as to who had the ball. It was so foggy that the timer was on the field with the referee. We couldn't see what was going on either. We had jumped out to a 25 to 0 lead. So in the 2nd half we sent in a play where our halfback took a reverse and ran wide around the left end. We told the QB to tell Paul Dowell, the halfback to run it wide, close to our bench so we could see what was going on. They ran the play, but instead of Paul Dowell coming by the bench, here was big Al Johnson, our tackle, carrying the ball. We asked what was going on? He said,"Coach, I talked Paul into trading places with me on that play. We're way ahead and I didn't think you guys would care.
More later !

A great reunion !

The Old Coach.

Remembrances from Alan Hauge '61

Memories of A&W
I was part of the class of 1961 along with four others, from Hawthorne went to A&W drive-in one evening and ordered "100" five cent root beers. The girl first refused to take our order but when we showed her the five dollar bill she finally relented. Then the manager showed up and told us to stop harrassing the car hop and demanded to know how many we really wanted. We said once again, 100 five cent root beers.

In a few minutes the trays started coming and five of us drank all 100. When we left A&W we "stole" about ten mugs. After a trip around the block we returned with all ten being held out of the open top of the VW bug we were in. The manager and two girls collected them in front of a rounding applause from other kids hanging out.

The manager had taken a picture of us with the 100 mugs attached to our car on each window tray, on the wheel and on the top of the car where two of us sat. The picture appeared in Life magazine in 1961 on an article about A&W being the busiest drive in in the country. I have a copy of the original picture but not the magazine.

Alan Hauge, class of 1961

Remembrances from Richard Steward '72

Memories from the Class of 72
Starting the year as a senior.
Finally going into senior square and feeling good about it.
Telling coach I had found something better than football (Betty Ethridge) and we are still married.
Mr Wing and the choir concerts and running to the big "T" for chloraseptic because some of us had sore throats (NERVES).
My two best friends Larry Germain, and Tom Aldridge, we were inseparable till I moved in Dec of 72 and that HURT. Guys if you are out there I still think of ya.
Field trips to Mr Wings cabin in Big Bear to collect mistletoe to sell for the choir.
Checking to see that it worked.
Rachel Horton my sophomore year.
Cutting classes and going to Taco Bell.
Working at Jack-in-the-Box across from the big "T".
I could go on and on but I wont. God, my alma mater has a cool web page.
Go Cougars

These Remembrances are from Sharon Wedesweiler Perry

Recollections from the 50's
Hi, early Hawthorne people - I graduated from HHS in 57 - 3rd graduating class. My cousin, Judy Hanson (now Owens) was in the 1st grad class. The campus was so new, no grass had been planted yet; we shlogged around in the mud a lot (must have been another El Nino time). Some teachers I remember: Hank Panian, History - my daughter's teacher at Orange Coast too - many years later; Mrs Corliss, Business Ed; Garza, Spanish; Bachman, gym. I'll recall more when I find my year books. I'm looking for some classmates: Roberta Bowker; Charlotte Wade (Pierce); Barbara Stafford; Bob Cera.

I lived at 314 W 129th St & went to Washington Elementary. I was a tall, skinny blond known by the alias' of Frenchie (I played the French horn in the band) & Peroxy (I was a natural blond!) I wore the full skirts with numerous crinoline petticoats (starched with sugar!) to add weight to my 98 lbs (I thought.) I remember the great snack bar & had wonderful tamales & beans, chocolate malts & chocolate cream pie almost every day - & couldn't gain a pound. This is not a problem anymore!

There were still street cars some of this time; about the only place to shop was Inglewood - the Boston Store especially. I was the proud owner of 2 cashmere sweaters. Roth's Mkt (later Food Giant) was on the corner of Hawthorne Blvd & 129th. I remember groups of gypsys camping on the empty lot on the opposite corner of Roth's & sugar, butter, nylons being rationed in the early 40's. Still remember the Flying Wing overhead & the booms coming from the aircraft plants on Aviation. I worked for a short time for STL (Space Technology Labs, formerly Thompson, Ramo Wooldridge & then TRW).
More later,
Sharon Wedesweiler (Perry)

More from The Coach...Hal Chauncey

Remembrances from the "Coaches Office"








These from Martha Tomlinson Icaza.... Class of 58

Recollections of youth
I lived in Hawthorne from 1941 until I married in 1961. I went to Williams St School through 6th grade and Hawthorne Jr High.

Just a few memories...
Boatneck blouses, Pettycoat slips with lots of ruffles. Girls could not wear pants to school.
Tight skirts, cashmere sweaters $20.00, I had one.
Pedal pushers, Capri pants and scarfs around the neck (they are back).
Shoes called "flats" or Mary janes.
Being able to buy four dresses at Chaneys for a total of $21.50.
Working a four four plan at school. ( 4hrs school 4hrs at work for credits.)
I worked at a little clothing store on Hawthorne Blvd next to the drugstore/malt shop. I worked for .50 cents an hour. I also worked and Ryans mens store on weekends.
How about those sock hops and backwards dances?
How about watching for B-52 bombers that flew over your back yard.
I lived on 132nd St. between Yukon and Crenshaw until I was 14, then on El Segundo Blvd. thru 1960. I could come home for lunch and swim and go back to school because I was so close.
So many people have mentioned all the good places that existed in Hawthorne and the Fun and Innocence that we all had the joy of experiencing.
About teachers, Mr Goodfellow was my favorite.
The school nurse saved my life... Ms. Mary K. Lucy. She was my friend and counselor.
I'll be checking this site often for some more memories.

Thank's again. Martha aka Marty

These remembrances are from Victoria Boydd--Leuzinger '63.....

Plaza Theatre
Looking at all the pictures of our hometown has really made me want to go back to childhood days.

What an innocent time it was. I remember seeing those wonderful horrow shows: Cyclops, THEM, IT, War of the Worlds, Creature from the black lagoon, and wearing those 3-D glasses!!! Stacking JuJuB's on your finger, eating BonBon's, and that great popcorn, which was made into a flying missile during intermission, but we had to be careful or else the dreaded USHER would come with his flashlight and escort you out!

I now tell my grandchildren all about growing up and what life was like "Back Then"! Funny, at the time we thought we were so modern and now here we are, all reaching back to a time that was filled with fun and laughter. I remember my mother telling me stories about the Plaza, The Little Rascals, Shirley Temple would come during intermission and talk to them.

It's so sad to think that the old Pink Palace is now a MALL! Why couldn't they just take a bus to South Bay or Inglewood like we did! :- )

Even more remembrances from "THE OL' COACH" HAL CHAUNCEY.....

Non-strip Excuses

Even more remembrances from "THE OL' COACH" HAL CHAUNCEY.....

The Gil Gaier Prank
Hi John....Here's another story!

Gil Gaier It was the last day of school in June. After the last final exam, the teachers were in their rooms correcting test papers and "doing" grades. It was about 2:00 P.M. and Mr. Gil Gaier was in his room in old building 11. It was a very hot day and Mr. Gaier had opened all the windows and doors. 3 guys (Mel Williams, who is now a minister, was one and I think Gerald Sweitzer was another)took large brown paper bags, cut holes for their eyes and noses then pulled them over their heads. They then grabbed the fire hose out of the fire box close by and charged into Mr. Gaier's room, pointing the hose at him. Guess he almost had a heart attack running around the room and desks trying to escape! The three guys turned and ran out of the room, each in a different direction....never to be found! Guess they weren't as bad as you may think...they never turned on the water!

See you at the June 13th, 1st decade Reunion.

Let's go COUGARS!
Hal Chauncey
The Ol' Coach

More remembrances from "THE OL' COACH" HAL CHAUNCEY.....

Varsity Club Follies
Hi John...Here is another REMEMBRANCE from the early days.

VARSITY CLUB FOLLIES! The Varsity Club started the FOLLIES to raise funds to purchase film so the football games could be recorded for better coaching.

We had special acts from athletes, faculty, and various clubs on campus. They were held on both Friday and Saturday nights to packed house each night. It was great fun!

MR. GOODFELLOW presided over a FASHION SHOW. (I think the DOO DAA parade evolved from this!) Teachers dressed in all sorts of crazy "get-ups" with Mr. Goodfellow describing each costume in his dry, comical wit! The audience went wild seeing their teachers performing on stage in such a way!!

MR. ORRELL presented a CHEF ORRELLI skit...a take off on Chef Mallani! He gave outlandish recipes with all the gestures and descriptions of the ingredients in an old country Italian accent.

DAVE HINELINE, our biggest lineman, dressed like a "hillbilly" and did a "lip sinc" rendition of a great old record that, Andy Griffith produced in his early years, titled "WHAT IT WAS, WAS FOOTBALL" He was an immediate smash hit! Some of you may remember this recording, it was really funny....they should re-release it during football season some year.

ROD BLAIR gave a sensational, tongue -twister rendition of CINDERELLA titled "THE TWO SISTY UGLERS". The audience was rolling in the aisles at this one!

A couple of other members of the team, one may have also been DAVE HINELINE, did a version of "JOHN & MARSHA". They stood behind a drapery that came up to their hips, covered their head and shoulders with grandiose sized hats, painted their bellies with paint & make up to make them look like male and female faces - their belly button being the mouth. They moved their bellies in and out to make the faces look like they are speaking, coordinated with the record. Many will remember, that this record has only two words spoken time after time with different expressions in loving tones. Maybe they did throw in an "OH" here and there when they really became amorous! Funny! Funny! I'd love to see it done again someday. Maybe they would do it for their Reunion coming up in June!?

These great Varsity Club Follies were presented for several years until the school could afford to buy film. Those were great ol' days!!! Unforgettable.


More remembrances from "THE COACH" HAL CHAUNCEY.....










These remembrances are from Bob Straube Class of '74

Early 70's Memories
Mrs Johnson's Calif. History class. She had such a reputation as being a complete monster but in reality one of the fairest and best teachers a kid could have.
Partying at Eucalyptus Park in the days before gangs and gunfire became common.
Bob Trenkle and Cher Faulkner playing guitars and leading sing alongs that made teen years almost seem bearable.
Walking to " Hokey Pinokey" to catch tiny frogs in the swamp behind the chemical company offices.
Watching El Segundo police chase out the minibikes and dirt bike riders from Bollinger's farm property. Now Hughes owns most of the old ranch property over there.
The old farmers house and field on El Segundo Blvd where Big 5 warehouse is now located.
Foster's freeze on Hawthorne Blvd- My kid's love to go there now just like I did way back when.
The Joker - Headshop on east side of Hawthorne Blvd by the train tracks. Great accessories and Awesome Black Light poster selections.
Bell beefers from Taco Bell?????????
Driving up to Pacific Ocean Park ( P.O.P. ) in Doug Chase's 'Cuda and getting busted by park security shortly after arriving and hopping the chain link fence.
Parents going shopping at Boy's market on Hawthorne and 118th and leaving us as little kids to watch the movies the store played in a kids area by the south entrance to the store.
The amusement park with Ferris wheel at 116th and Hawthorne Blvd. Helm's Bakery truck making rounds in Del Aire area after school- perfect timing for after school snacks.
Yes I still have my authentic Helms window sign that would cause the truck to stop outside your house and blow that wonderful whistle that meant come and get it!!
Mr. Macha's Aerospace class where he would tell us endless stories of searches for plane wrecks in the nearby mountains. He always could speak better if he was holding one of his many model airplanes so he could twirl the propellers while spinning his yarns of lost flying machines and the histories behind the aircraft.
My first paying job restocking the Coke machine at the old chevron station at 120th and Aviation. ( Didn't coke taste better back then when it came in those great glass bottles that would freeze your hands while you were drinking?
Delivering the Daily News at 6a.m. Sat. and Sun. mornings before the city awoke?
Cruising around town with Don Williams in his yellow 1967 V.W. bug?
F.Y.I. Don Williams passed away in 1997 at his home in Oregon . A fine guy who will be missed forever more.
Making a movie in Mr. Sloan's Modern Media class and recording on something like 2 or 3 inch reel to reel videotape!
Mrs. Mark's English class: her motto..." No excuses, just production...simple, efficient production!!
Hanging out at the train tracks between classes , havin a smoke(various types) until the cops swooped down and chased us thru the Aloha/Thriftimart parking lot.
Karen Vinson - What a babe
Graduating on Halcap field and having a streaker grace us with his presence(?)
Not seeing 95% of the people we swore we'd stay in touch with!
Strange to have my daughter attending Hawthorne High these days and still having some of the same teachers ( don't these people know when to quit / retire / get a life ? )
Thanks H.H.S for some amazing memories to review for many years to come!

Bob Straube
Class of 1974


Hi John...What a wonderful thing you have done to start the HHS Cougar Web Site !! Our son and daughter, Dave and Jan, found it and sent us a few pages. Now we have our first computer and have browsed through every word with fascination and many memories of my 20 years at HHS! It was great seeing all the familiar names! I was lucky to have been there from the inception of Our High School in 1951. We had so many wonderful and "class" students!

"In the beginning"....there were 20 teachers, including administrators who also needed to teach classes. It was a great faculty, headed up by Mr. Wally Nyman as the principal, who were all very dedicated to the school and the 750 kids. The school started with half day sessions in the afternoon at Leuzinger High School in the fall of 1951. We were there until the new campus was completed. (As usual, the contractor was not on schedule!) When we finally moved soon after the first of the year, some of the men faculty helped move the tables, desks and chairs into our new rooms. We had work days, when the kids and faculty would arrive early in the AM, all carrying "brown bag" lunches, and work together planting trees, shrubs, washing windows, etc. After work, about 2PM, we would all get together and have faculty vs student volleyball and softball games. A real camaraderie developed!

I remember when a photograph was taken of the entire student body, all 750 of them. The photographer had a camera that scanned from one end of the group to the other. There were several "smart guys" who lined up at one end of the group then after the camera passed them, they sprinted in back of the group and got back into the picture at the other end!! Really very clever!

We had great kids and athletes that were committed to putting HHS on the map thru athletics...and they did!! We had parental support for all departments and especially the athletic program. In 1953, when our football team first took part in the CIF playoffs, we had 2 airplanes, any number of busloads plus a parade of cars travel to Paso Robles for the semi-final game. For all the home games, the fans started filling the stands by 6:30PM to get a seat for an 8PM game. We had school spirit that was fantastic...unequaled! Dave Capelouto and I, as co-coaches the first few years, had the best job and greatest kids to work with. We still keep in touch with many of "our kids"...hell, some are now in their 50s & 60s....but they are still "our kids!"

Chauncey and Capelouto
Our life style has evolved since those wonderful days at HHS. My wife of 50 years, Cathy, and I now reside in Seal Beach for 7 months of the year and the other 5 months in Palm Springs. We play tennis most every day year round! More remembrances another day.


This from Glenn Benson..... Class of 68

Hawthorne and HHS were the absolute center of the universe for the 60's "car cruising" and "surf " phenomena that swept the rest of the country. It was like living in London when the Beatles/Stones arrived or the Haight Ashbury for the "Summer of Love". That mixed with the "community and people" that were Hawthorne is what made it really something special to be remembered. Outside of the really great friends of my youth I recall:

* Visiting a friends house at 119th and Doty and hearing some strange group across the street banging away in their garage singing, "Surfing is the only life, the only life for me, now surf...."
* Our Junior High classmate David Marks being tossed out of the original Beach Boys for Al Jardine because David was too young to travel.....remember David Marks and the Marksman?
* Drop In Dances in the Hawthorne Library and then in the Community Center....Jan & Dean, the Righteous Brothers, the Beach Boys, etc.
* Jim Herrick teaching PE at Hawthorne Intermediate in 1963 and then seeing him coach the Bruins to the NCAA Title, thirty, or so, years later.
* Dennis Wilson pulling into Foster's Freeze in Sam Cooke's old Ferrari.
* LooseFinger High School
* 22nd Street in Hermosa on a hot summer day in front of the Biltmore Hotel...discovering that the girls from Dana were alright by us.
* Hanging out on Manor Drive (poker games, cars, first beers, etc.) and telling half the school there was a party on Halloween so we could egg our friends as they cruised by.
* Trying to get a peek at the new 1962 (and a ½ if I remember correctly) Chevy Impala SS 409 hidden, we were sure, behind Kenneth Chevrolet.
* Delivering the Mirror News before it got sucked into the LA Times....when "Going Postal" meant getting the second delivery of mail for your mother.
* Converse or Jack Purcells?
* Sitting on the bus stop at 120th and Hawthorne Boulevard on a Friday night, because we were too young to cruise but we liked the show and couldn't wait!
* Having my parents drag me kicking and screaming down to South High in my Sophomore year and then dragging myself back to Hawthorne every Friday and Saturday night
* Gary, Tom (show up this time!), Bill, Woody, Alan, Jim, and everyone else from our little end of Hawthorne....Hope to see you this summer for our 30th!

Glenn Benson "68"
Fair Oaks, CA

These are from Kathy Hamler Purchase....Class of 1968

High School Years
Freshman Year, 1964-1965
Does anyone remember frosh Cynthia Cherbak- a Dramatic Arts major, donning two different knee socks, in different colors and different patterns?
Does anyone remember Senor (Alex) Bravo, the coach and Spanish teacher? He told me to "Lay off Art Council," one of the members of his track team." Would I have a lawsuit today? (I heard that Art Council- a very dear FRIEND- got killed in Vietnam. Can somebody verify?)
Does anyone remember the cafeteria lady who stood at the side door of the cafeteria and served chocolate milk and chocolate cake for breakfast! I thought I'd died and gone to heaven!! Going to HHS as a freshman also introduced me to fishsticks- which I had never eaten before. From then on it was fish sticks and macaroni every Friday for lunch!
Does anyone remember what you were doing when the WATT's RIOTS broke out that summer? I had gone shopping to Thrifti-Mart with Yvonne Karlock and my mother came racing into the parking lot in our car, telling us men with guns were coming down Inglewood Avenue. She grabbed us both into the car and sped off toward home on the other side of town.
Sophomore Year, 1965-1966
Geometry!!! The bain of my existence. And "Proofs"!! All of the foreign students that came that year? Do any of you gals remember "Gino," from Italy????
Junior Year, 1966-1967
Statistics!!! in Algebra II!!! Mr. Caldwell took the time, when I was having trouble with Statistics, to teach me after class. I had a miserable cold and he was brave- and kind- enough to wade through my snotty-nosed (literally) questions. Mr. Caldwell was also the one who,bless his heart, was SURE, that it had NOT been I who had walked off with the important exam (which was to remain in the classroom). He was SURE that it had been Martin Lipsky, who sat behind me, who had trotted out the door the with test questions. Martin didn't have the test. And when I opened my notebook, both Mr. Caldwell and I were shocked to realize that it WAS I who was about to walk off with the exam. BY MISTAKE!!! BY MISTAKE!!!
Anyone remember sweating out the PSAT exams? Now they have the test on computer software to study from!
Remember what you were doing when both Martin Luther King and Robert Kennedy were assassinated?
I certainly remember dating Larry Purchase- who I had met in "Co-Ed PE," an "experiment" at that time. I was to wear his Senior ring which I wrapped and wrapped in dental floss, then coated with tons of clear nail polish.
Remember, guys, waxing the seats of your car, so that you could more easily find the girl under your arm? It was the days before seatbelts. Worrying with my boyfriend- who was to become my husband-WHAT we were going to do about the Draft.
Senior Year, 1967-1968
Sweating out the SAT's. Still worrying about the Draft. The race for college scholarships. "Alternative education" was not as much has an option for students then. And getting pregnant was still like a death-knell, though the pregnant graduates were allowed to participate in the Graduation Exercises. Living thru the Graduation speeches. I think we were still allowed to mention "God."

These are from Laura Magdalany-Nyce Class of 1978

Days Gone By
The other day driving by the old school my kid said: "Mom your school looks like a Jailhouse" Yep sure does.
It's amazing how many stores/landmarks have changed. Are the lockers gone? My kid said "you guys had your own".
Some other memories/landmarks are Thriftymart and smoking by the wall. (pretty dumb I know)
The wine tasting room..I never went in there,but did anyone?
Yes I do remember Boston Store and Kress but who but our Grandma's went there.
I remember Delta Liquor on Hawthone/El Segundo and getting caught stealing an abba zabba (now it can be told).
Food Giant, Danakan (sp), is that crazy Mary lady still yelling at cars?
The Ferris Wheel by Hawthorne Community Hospital.
Leos Stereo...hey I bought Madman Across the Water there!
La Fiesta, Kresge, La Placita remember that was an indoor swap meet on Crenshaw/El Segundo.
Is House of Raymond gone? it's about time!!
As far as teachers: Mr. Sloan, Mr Kirkpatrick, Ms. Duffy, Ms. Cable, Ms. Likens, Mr. Hall, Mr. Courtney
Does anyone remember that old lady that taught home ec?
Anyway it's nice to know theres a web site for sharing old memories. Take care all!!!....

These are from Adrian Reynolds.....Class of 1967

Youthful Hangouts
I grew up in the unincorporated portion of Hawthorne west of Inglewood Avenue and south of El Segundo Blvd.
I remember:

Holly Glen Park

Wiseburn School District

When I was very young, late 50's, there were open fields on nearly every block, as well as large tracts of open land west of Aviation Boulevard, that we called "Okeefenokee". The railroad tracks passed through this tract. We used to hang out in there before we were old enough to drive, have cars, or even to have access to downtown Hawthorne.

A few years later, early 60's, our private swamp and hangout became Xerox's corporate headquarters. About the same time, the San Diego Freeway was under construction. For about 6 months, the overpass above the railroad tracks had an opening underneath that could be reached by climbing the embankment. Inside the overpass were small room-like cells. Someone had moved a couple of pieces of furniture in there and it became our new hangout. Eventually, the freeway was completed and the opening was closed, but for about 6 months, it was our home base for trouble-making.

Although looking back, and comparing it to things that happened in the 70's and 80's, it was really very harmless trouble-making.

These are from Lynn Gills I.H.S......Class of 1971

Remember when...
Growing up in Hollypark, walking down to the Cork N Bottle liquor store, corner of Crenshaw and 119th St. with my best friend Lorraine, if Dennis Wilson was there he always bought us RC Cola, big stick popcicles, and Bazooka bubble gum, we would sit on the bus bench across the street and wait till the bus pulled up and opened the door before telling the driver we're just sitting here. Also going to watch the jets land, I don't remember the street, but my sister and I would lay on the roof of the car and watch the jets go directly over us, I remember being scared the first time, it was at night and the jets seemed huge! My Senior year at I.H.S. we finally got to go on a field trip, it was Independent Civics class and we were all excited about getting off of school for a couple of periods, until we found out our field trip was a tour of the hyperion plant! We smelled so bad when we got back to school we wern't allowed in the classrooms, they sent us home. Classic car shows at school and Big Willie from the Streetracers showing up. "Borrowing" the Big Boy statue in front of Bob's Big Boy for Senior Square My dad was an administrator at I.H.S. and I would take his car at lunch and a bunch of us would cruise the blvd. have lunch at the "A" and hope we wern't late getting back. Anyone remember the stories about missiles being underground at the park in El Segundo? We were convinced that the story was true, I don't remember why.

These are from Garnett Pollard.....Class of 1965

Your not a kid anymore when:
You're asleep, but others worry that you're dead.
You can live without sex but not without your glasses.
Your back goes out more than you do.
You quit trying to hold your stomach in no matter who walks into the room.
You buy a compass for the dash of your car.
You are the proud owner of a lawn mower.
Your best friend is dating someone half his age and isn't breaking any laws.
You call Olin Mills before they call you.
Your arms are almost to short to read the newspaper.
You sing along with elevator music.
You would rather go to work than stay home sick.
You constantly talk about the price of gasoline.
You enjoy hearing about other people's operations.
You make an appointment to see the dentist.
You no longer think of the speed limit as a challenge.
Neighbors borrow your tools.
People call at 9 p.m. and ask, "Did I wake you?'
You have dreams about prunes.
You answer a question with, "Because I said so!"
You send money to PBS.
You still buy records, and you think that a CD is a certificate of deposit.
The end of your tie doesn't come anywhere near the top of your pants.
You take a metal detector to the beach.
You wear black socks with sandles.
You know what the word equity means.
You can't remember the last time you lay on the floor to watch television.
Your ears are hairier than your head.
You talk about "good grass," and you're referring to someone's lawn.
You get into heated arguments about pension plans.
You got cable for the weather channel.
You have a party and the neighbors don't even realize it.
You don't need sunglasses because your eyebrows shade your eyes.

These are from Steve Eide.....Class of 1966

The Boy Scout lodge where the "new" main library was built. Gunga Din was in the back.
The torn movie screen at the Plaza. Torn by an airborne flattend popcorn box.
The soda fountain at the Rexall at Broadway and Hawthorne Blvd.
Walking fast past the Fox-Dunaway mortuary on Broadway. Jimmy Fox where are you?
My friend Danny Petty the first male carhop at A&W.

This from Joseph Mailander.....Class of 1977

Memories/early seventies:
Everyone wearing Adidas or wallabies.
The creepy but crazy guy at the Hawthorne Library.
Everyone knowing one lunatic named "Crazy Mary".
Nobody going out for basketball because of the mandatory haircut rule.
First Jethro Tull, then John Denver, then Blue Oyster Cult being really in.
Head shop next to rail depot on Hawthorne near Broadway.
Using off campus lunch pass to go to Taco Bell.
Sign in Aloha Drugs: No high school students during school hours.
Sneaking into Aloha Drugs anyway to watch the World Series.
Gilbert's 5&10, where you could buy items like "cuss boxes".
Foster's Freeze, the Beach Boys hang.
Perry's Pizza in Manhattan Beach.
And this from the sixties:

The A&W rootbeer stand, complete with car hops.
Drink nine gallons, your tenth is free. [Nine gallons of root beer] That would take a long year, I think.

This from Mike Shay.....Class of 1961

You could be 50 if you remember Mama, Margie, Beulah, Joan, Gracie, The Kingfish and Sapphire, Buffalo Bob, Clarabelle, Beanie, Cecil, Dishonest John, and Tearalong the Dotted Lion.
You could be 50 if all the erectile material on your body snaps to attention when you see a 57 Chevy.
You could be 50 if your girlfriend wore matching sweaters and Poodle Skirts.
You could be 50 if you ever saw an episode of:
  • "Crusader Rabbit"
  • "Smilin' Ed's Gang"
  • "Space Patrol"
  • "Jim Corbett Space Cadet"
  • "Racket Squad"
  • "Boston Blackie"
  • "Spin and Marty"
You could be 50 if you thought the special effects in the "Flash Gordon" movies were cool.
You could be 50 if you can fill in the blanks...
  • Danny and the ?????
  • Harold Melvin and the ?????
  • Billy Ward and the ?????
  • Link Wray and the ?????
You could be 50 if you took accordion lessons.
You could be 50 if you know how to Cha Cha.
You could be 50 if you know what Canasta is.
You could be 50 if you wondered if Bobby ever played with Annettes boobs, then realized later that he was probably more interested in Cubby.
You could be 50 if you watched "Midget Wrestling" on TV.
You could be 50 if you know who Spade Cooley was.
You could be 50 if you've been to:
  • Corriganville
  • Jungle Land
  • Pacific Ocean Park
  • Pier-point Landing
You could be 50 if your mom used to tell you that she wanted you to grow up more like David, because that "smart ass Ricky was no damn good".
You could be 50 if your favorite action heroes had names like Hoppy, Roy, Gene, Johnny, Crash, Lash, Flash, and "The Duke".

These remembrances from Lyle Tucker.....Class of 1977

Memories from late 60's and early 70's
Playing the 5 cents Western Corral B-B Gun Machine at Clark Drugs, where "bad guys" would peek out from windows and doorways
Stopping off at Folb's Playland after catechism and drooling over the toys you knew you'd never get
Weeekly field trips to the Public Library from Hawthorne Intermediate
Stealing Hot Wheels at Kress when the old ladies behind the counters were busy talking amongst themselves {YIKES! What's the statute of limitations for stealing Hot Wheels?}
Wondering why the heck Mel's House of Raymond was called Mel's House of Raymond.
Getting buttermilk donuts from the Helm's Bakery truck as it rolled along the streets after school
Never once going in and buying clothes from The Boston Store
Jack and Mike {The proprietors of Jack's Deli right behind the bank on Hawthorne and El Segundo} sneaking around the back and throwing your bike into the freezer while you were busy buying chocolate "ice cubes" and them pretending your bike must've been stolen
5 cent ice cream cones from Thrifty's
Meeting Alan Hale {"The Skipper" from Gilligan's Island} at Hale Furniture and getting a signed 8 X 10 and having him call you "little buddy"
Riding your stingrays to Marineland in PV and then careening down the hill on the way back a million miles an hour, taking your feet off the pedals because they went around too fast
Picking up a nail in my tire one time, having to walk the @$#!% bike most of the way down!
Taking the #5 bus on Hawthorne Blvd on Saturdays to go to a double-feature at the UA or Fox Theatres in Inglewood
Taking your date to the back of the balcony at the Fox so you wouldn't be pelted with ju-ju-bees and M & M's
Hanging out at the beach trying to be cool even though you didn't surf and even though, truth be told, you were kind of afraid of the water

These remembrances from Myrna (Bizzell) Bell.......Class of 1966

Mid 60's easy we had it.
I remember when John Baker (Johnny) used to come over to our house and he and my brother Gordon and their friend Bob Reagan would harass me for absolutely no reason at all. I'm sure that there was no way that I ever did anything that could have been interpreted as something to bother them.
I also remember John's dog (a Samoyed, I think) "Jingo" Big, white dog, nicer than John, if I remember correctly.
I also remember the time that Bob (Reagan) was riding my brother Tom's Cushman scooter, seems that he lost control and he (Bob, not the scooter) hit and caved in someone's car door.
Some of the best times were when Tom would let me borrow his '57 Studebaker Golden Hawk and I would take some of my friends "cruisin". We never went far, I wasn't even allowed to cruise the A&W, so of course, that was the very first place we went.
I remember that girls weren't allowed to take woodshop or autoshop. We were blessed - we could take homemaking, typing and shorthand. I'm glad "times" have changed in that regard.
I also remember that if a girl got pregnant, it was a disgrace - it wasn't something to celebrate like it seems to be now-a-days.
The bus rides to football games were cool, and the band, cheerleaders, and drill team were organized, and took pride in the jobs they did.
I remember that Mr. Morgan was a formidable teacher, and that he failed the Beach Boys. (Hard to believe that he is Reverend Fred Morgan, now!)
I remember that I used to think life was kind of tough. Boy, if only we knew then, how easy we had it.
I send greetings to all Cougars, and especially the class of '66. My sister Ginny May Bell (class of '69), is not on-line yet - she lives in McAlester, Oklahoma with her husband and two sons (12 & 10), and she sends greetings also.

These remembrances from Patt (Deckard) Prewitt.......Class of 1965

Fond 60's Memories
I remember that CLARA LYNN Coffman had a Charge account for the HELM'S bakery truck. We used to get brownies and goodies and charge it to their account until her parents put a stop to that.
I also remember that every Saturday the Boy Scouts would sell Doughnuts door to door, My Daddy would always buy " NUM-NUM".Dunkin Donuts!
For the people in the unannexed area, Remember"Shaky" the Ice Cream man that was killed in an accident on the job? He was the sweetest man I had ever met. I really mourned his loss.

Class of 65 lets here from you. All Email WELCOME. Patt

These remembrances from Bob Melendrez.. Class of 1971

Here are some 60's memories from
Dana Jr. High, HHS, and life in general...

- Jr. High dances at Dana. The boys stayed on one side of the room, the girls stayed on the other.
- The Frankie and Annette movies at the Plaza.
- Ana Marie's hobby shop at 137th and Inglewood Ave.
- Playing "capture the flag" in Holly Glen park late at night.
- Getting a Herald-Examiner paper route to pay for my music lessons.
- Drooling over the Ludwig drum set in the window of Melody Music.
- Getting my hand stuck in a ball at Hawthorne Bowl. They used a hammer to break it off...the ball that is.
- Fred Richards telling me I reminded him of one of the Flintstones...."Dino". The nickname stuck for years.
- Having a "crush-for-life" on Pam Magnuson, and being too shy to talk to her.
- Listening to Ken Sheldon and Clay Jordan's band and thinking they were real cool.
- Hanging out at 26th St. in Manhattan.
- Trying to learn how to surf and getting "sand facials" and "neptune cocktails".
- Making wine in Steve Mann's kitchen sink, then burying it in his yard for 3 days to "age".
- Playing at the after game dances with our band, "And Company".
- The gory films in Driver's Ed.
- The dreaded "sidewalk lap" in coach Chauncey's gym class.
- Taking my drivers test with my dad's "prized" ' 65 Galaxie.
- My first car. A ' 63 Impala SS. (No, I was NOT a low rider).
- Feeling shocked about Martin Luther King and Bobby Kennedy.
- Hearing about some big outdoor concert in upstate N.Y. in August of ' 69.
- Viet Nam and the draft lottery.
- Thinking that those 4 years at HHS went by awfully fast......

These remembrances from Chris Prewitt.......

Here are some of my memories from the mid 60's.
Converse High tops
St. Christopher (surfer's medals)
Pendletons (I could not afford one but my sister Bonney sewed me a wool shirt and got in trouble because she let my mother hear her cuss for the first time). I still have that shirt.
The drop-in
Thriftymart (I could buy a coke and hostess pie for 25 cents)
Gilbert's 5,10 and 25 cent store (my very first job)
Going to the Chevron Station at Inglewood and El Segundo with a gallon can and 25 cents and coming home with a full can and change!
Smelling the sulphur from the refineries.
Having my lungs burn from breathing the air.

These are 8th grade remembrances from Mike Shay.......

Learning to play snooker at Utters.
Looking forward to getting my drivers license.
Hanging out with guys that had cars.
Joy rides in my mom's 56 Victoria when she was out of town.
Twenty five cent, all day movies at the plaza theater.
Trying to pick up girls at the plaza theater.
Buying cigarettes from the machine in front of Mastins drug store.
Wishing I was good enough to make All Stars like Baker, Schlettler, and Petch.
Bus trips to Knotts when you got in for nothing.
Listening to Bob Frazier's Rhythm and Blues records.
Looking at dirty magazines at Deacons Shine Parlor.
Looking at cool cars at Le-Jays.
New car arrivals at Kenneth Chevrolet and Chaffee Motors.
Miniature golf at Shady Acres.
The Pike (Home of the cyclone racer, two tattoo parlors, and scary people).
Gene Jones new Black Panther forearm tattoo (he was only 13).
Playing all three guitar chords with Tom Shelley.
J.C. Higgins stuff.
8th grade dances at Saint Josephs (Karen Thornton and Janet Lucero taught me).
Trying to score on Janet Lucero.
Trying to score on anyone.

Please limit your recollections to a maximum of 500 words.

Revised 11-18-08