San Jose High Bulldog

San Jose High Bulldog


This site has been created to become a central meeting place for classmates of the San Jose High Class of 1954. To see all the blogs, be sure to click on 'OLDER POSTS' at the very end. And also, please add us to your 'FAVORITES' list, so you can return quickly at any time.
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Tuesday, May 4, 2010

#3 Classmates Here and There


Frank Tavolacci and his wife Mary celebrated their 50th anniversary aboard the Sea Princess. What a neat picture. Way to go, Frank!

Here’s Winston Adcock with 2 of his bloodhounds. He and his wife Barbara are volunteers of CARDA, the California Rescue Dog Association, the largest in the US. Winston started in search and rescue in 1982, and some of the searches have taken him to Ketchikan and Oregon, though most were in Ca. (including the aftermath of the Loma Prieta earthquake in 1989). He has had some notable successes. Winston is also a member of San Mateo Sheriff’s Search and Rescue.

Rosalie Maltese Alessi has been residing in Turlock. She had 4 children, 8 grandchildren and 2 great-grandkids.

Phyllis Ianello Chamberlin sends greetings from Kentucky. She met her first husband while on vacation in Hawaii and settled in Kentucky where she had 5 children and now has 11 grandchildren and 7 great-grandkids. Her first husband passed away in 1996 and she married her current husband Dick in 2004.

Tessie Jackson Henry lives in San Francisco after retiring from the postal service. Did you know she sang at Pat Uhler's wedding?

Carol and Ron Portal at their ranch on Mt. Hamilton. The great outdoors seem to agree with them and they were at the reunion with their friends and neighbors, John and Flo Andreoli.

Here are the Portals with the Andreoli's - the Four Musketeers of Mt. Hamilton - visiting the four presidents of Mt. Rushmore. (The presidents are on the left.) John has always felt closer to his Lick classmates, but we finally got to claim him as a member of OUR graduating class!

Still smiling is Joe Burchfiel with his wife Joyce. While a police officer, he was once chosen to attend the FBI Academy in Quantico, VA and retired as a police captain. They now live in Medford, Oregon. He wants to say 'Hi' to all his classmates and regrets that he won't be able to attend our reunion because of a family reunion in Oregon on the same weekend. He's looking forward to seeing all the reunion photos of his classmates on this website. Maybe next time, Joe.

Gwen James Ardizzone retired from the Santa Clara County Mental Health Dept. and moved to Firebaugh, where she was very active in churches and teaching Bible studies. Her husband passed away in 2000 and she's recently moved back to the Bay Area to be near her grandchildren. She plans to open a day-care center and this picture is going on the advertising brochure. No, just kidding. She has 3 children, 7 grandchildren with one more one the way. She attended the reunion with her son Tim, who was on a lay-over from Australia, on his way to England.

From Las Vegas, the Rev. Vic Rapazzini came to the reunion with his wife and son. After leaving the winery, he attended the Silver State Seminary and was ordained a deacon in 1992 and a minister in 1999. In between were bouts of teaching, and now that he's retired from the ministry, being a sub-teacher keeps him busy. Did you know that Vic and Bill DiCristina are cousins? Yep, their mothers were sisters. I always thought there was a resemblance!........... not.

We have just received the sad news that Shirley Scoggins Hawkes has passed away. She continued her music education after SJ State and Westmont College, studying with several prominent teachers, including the choir director Robert Shaw, singing in a concert under his direction at Avery Hall in Lincoln Center. She continued to use her musical gifts throughout her life - in church, for weddings and funerals and in community choruses, some of which she directed.

Shirley and her husband Dana celebrated their 50th anniversary in December of last year, along with her 2 daughters and son-in-laws and 3 grandkids. Special thanks to Dana for taking the time during this emotional period to send us these pictures, so Shirley could say goodbye to her classmates.

Jan Massey married Jim Spano (class of '53 and Josephine Spano's brother) while in college and taught school for 22 years, with time-outs to raise 2 sons. Now residing in Santa Cruz, they love to travel and have been to Europe, South America, Australia and China. Here they're at a market in France.

Does this couple look happy or what? JoAn Bruner married Rex Kellogg in 1955 after a 4 month courtship and everyone said it wouldn't last! 3 children, 7 grandchildren and 6 great-grandkids later, after Rex's retirement and living in many different cities, we find them on the road as permanent RVer's. (BTW, JoAn's brother is married to Bill Nix's sister.)

Leo Mauro has worked for the Santa Clara Co. Sheriff's Office since 1969. He and Carolyn have been married for 42 years and have 2 sons and 3 grandchildren.

From the May 29, 1953 edition of the San Jose Herald 'America's Oldest High School Weekly', comes this article. "Leo Mauro, one High's rising baseball stars, commented that the Willow Glen game was his most exciting. Seventeen year old Leo, who plays center field, has no definite plans for the future. He remarked, "One should practice hard and cut out all smoking." How many of you heeded his advice?

Colleen Kelly Tanner sends a recent picture with her first grandchild. She lives in Albany, Oregon.

In 2005 Adrienne Etheridge Durfee and her husband Don celebrated their 50th anniversary aboard an Alaskan cruise ship. They met while Don was attending college in Indiana after a stint in the Marines, after which he went into the publishing business. Adrienne had always dreamed of being a nurse and went back to school after raising 3 daughters to become a medical receptionist. She's now a proud great-grandmother twice over. After retirement, the Durfees opted for the quiet life in Paso Robles, but still enjoy traveling.

This is Joyce Hardenbrook with her husband Pastor Marvin Rickard, now fully retired. They'll be celebrating their 56th anniversary on September 3, along with their 7 grandchildren and 3 great grandchildren.

Bev Traber and her husband Glenn Bennett have been living in Saratoga for the past 50 years. They met at San Jose State and he's a retired Westinghouse engineer. After graduating from State, Bev returned (after 2 sons) for a BS in nursing and then went on to Marquette for her Masters. She taught and lectured around the US and published 2 nursing textbooks. Now 'officially retired', her hobbies include singing.

Here's Peter D'Anna and his wife Patricia. Peter, now retired, was an Administrator with the Social Security Administration. He's still active as a senior advocate in the Carmichael area.

Gene McCown and his wife Anita (Winston Adcock's sister!) are grateful to have their 2 children (+2 grandchildren) living very near them in San Jose. Gene retired in 2004 as CFO of Omnivision Technologies, and before that had a 17-year career at National Semiconductor, with 3 years in Singapore as Director of Finance.

Here's Joe Burchfiel and Ray Pasetta at the 50th reunion. Ray passed away several years ago after a career at IBM. He had retired to central California.

This is last picture we have of Jheri Cadile Sundberg who has also passed away. Jheri and her husband Butch lived in Las Vegas for awhile, but returned to San Jose. Here she's sitting with Bill Kogura and Yvonne Satariano Santi at an outing in Santa Cruz. Yvonne lives in North Hollywood near her 2 children and 3 grandkids.

This picture was taken quite a few years back, but remember David Bentel? Like his buddy Marvin Horton, Dave married a German girl and after a career in teaching, has retired to the Carmel Valley.

Colleen Keys Spediacci and her escort Jim Broz traveled from Carmel to attend our 55th reunion, and they attended the 56th too. They're sitting with Colleen Kelly Tanner, though we only see her beautiful hair.

Marilyn Lambdin and her husband Ron Rios. Marilyn worked tirelessly on the past 2 reunions and we owe her much gratitude; she's going to relax and enjoy this one. She still lives in San Jose, raised 3 sons and is helping to raise 4 grandchildren, in addition to helping out at her husband's business. She says she needs to keep busy.....

Norm Mowat and his wife, Lora came from South Lake Tahoe, sitting with Lloyd Webb at the 55th reunion last year. They also came to our 56th.

Here's Carolyn Chaney Pickering and Ann Kuzinich Scolari, also at the 55th. Carolyn capped a teaching career (while raising 3 children) by becoming a middle-school principal, and came out of retirement to continue teaching at Sacramento State University.

Art Pasquinelli retired as a project manager for PG&E in 1993. He and his wife (Louella Martin, class of '53) have a son, and after tennis and golf, Art still has the energy to babysit his 2 grandkids every day.

JoAnn Caruso Syvertson and Ken Stephenson at the 55th San Jose High reunion. Ken has spent a lot of time in prisons - San Quentin, Soledad and the federal penitentiary in Atwater, to be specific. After a career in insurance, he went back to UC Santa Cruz and UC San Diego to become an alcohol and drug counselor, and participates in the prison programs. He had 4 children with his first wife, and married his second wife Joyce in 1987.

Norma Achelpohl Morrell moved to Santa Rosa in 1959. She raised 3 children, has 6 grandkids plus assorted donkeys, goats and shih tzu dogs! And now she has 8 great-grandkids to boot. Last year she sold her farm to her daughter and son-in-law, and is now free to roam.

Bill Stewart sent a picture from Enterprise, Alabama, where he recently moved with his wife Georgia. He lived in the Sacramento area until his retirement, but says he 'tired' of California. Hey, that's what he said.

Elio Castanuelo has passed away recently, but here he is earlier with his wife Suzie in Tallin, Estonia on holiday with Andris Ramans. After UC Berkely, Andris went to work for Shockley Transistor, the original Silicon Valley company. He stayed in the silicon/semiconductor industry for the rest of his career, and before retirement worked on related projects in Japan, Korea and China. Andris and Betty have four sons and 12 grandchildren.

Andris with his wife Betty and Elio with Suzie at the Baltic Seashore in Latvia. Elio lived in Texas and Andris in Los Altos, but they'd remained friends through the years and often went on vacations together. After the collapse of the communist regime in Latvia, Andris was able to reclaim his grandfather's homestead and now spends time there with his kids and grandkids.

Gene and Jan Valenti Gimelli with JoAnn Caruso Syvertson, part of the organizing committee, pictured during a recent 'scouting' expedition to check out suitable venues for our reunion.

Adreen Petroni D'Amico attended the 50th reunion with her husband. They've lived in Santa Clara all these years and they were at this reunion too.

Marlene and David Rhoads: Married since 1953, they celebrated their 55th wedding anniversary in 2008! Can anyone beat that? They now live in Cameron Park, enjoying retirement playing golf and bridge plus traveling. Marlene says they have 8 grandchildren and 6 great-grandchildren who all live in the area, which makes for some big family gatherings. She didn't mention having any kids herself, but I'm going to guess she did!

Marlene answers: 'You're so silly, Willie! Yes, I had 4 children.'

Bill and Jean Telford Nix, married for 52 years: Bill became Professor (Emeritus) of Materials Science at Stanford after 40 years of teaching on the faculty. He's now 'retired' but still lecturing there and doing research with PhD.students. He'll still found time to MC our reunion program, and Jean organized a presentation of photographs that brought back great memories.

After living in various locations, including Puerto Rico, due to Joe's job, Kathy and Joe Strobel have retired to Victor, NY, where they live a quiet life near their 5 children and 14 grandchildren. She found this quote that she felt summed up her feelings exactly: "I don't want to make anyone jealous...or seem to be bragging...but I can still fit into the earrings I wore in high school!" 'And that's all I can wear that still fits!'

Dotsy and Bill DiCristina have now retired to Lincoln, near Sacramento, after Bill's teaching career in the San Jose area. They had a great time at the 56th reunion.

Ann Kuzinich Scolari, who just this day had a toe amputated! Asked why she was so happy, she replied she now qualifies for a 10% discount on her pedicures. (I think she was on some 'happy' pills!) Must be an easier way to economize, no?

Doug Scolari, who's supposed to be taking care of Ann while she's recuperating. That's why he's tired. Yeah, right. They're now residing in Discovery Bay, though they spend time at their home in Tahoe too. Doug retired from the furniture and decorating business after many years in the Willow Glen area of San Jose. He recently had hip replacement surgery, but he made it to the reunion.

Jane and Carlos Arevalo: Carlos has now retired as Auditor for the City and still lives in San Jose with his wife Jane. He's part of the reunion committee.

OK, 'fess up. Any of you have thoughts like this? Shame on you.


Please email your pictures to < > so we can put them on the blog. And let us know what you've been up to. Your classmates would enjoy seeing and hearing from you as much as you have hopefully enjoyed seeing them. Let's keep in touch!


Here are some photos of the 'old' San Jose High campus, for those of you who haven't been back to visit her for all these years. She's actually looking pretty good, but if you remember, she was brand new when we started there, lo those many years ago.
This is a view from Julian Street, looking at the side of the main building. As you can see, she's now called 'San Jose High Academy'.

This view is looking across Julian with the girls' gym in the background. I don't believe this sign was there back then.

Here's a shot of the main entrance. I remember that bare, gray concrete wall before the bulldog logo was added after we left.

This is the Julian Street facade, which looks the same except for the shrubs and trees. It used to be pretty bare. Behind the nearest windows was the Bulldog Studio and Mr. Briggs' art class.

You'd never think over half a century has passed since we used to pass through those doors to the boys' gym!

Another shot of the gym showing the ramp leading to the football and track field.

There was some construction going on, but in the background are the football field and stands. (Don't remember the light standards though.)

Here's the girls' gym with the swimming pool on the right, which was added after we were gone.

Wish we had this swimming pool back then.

This is the view looking west on Julian as it crosses the creek. How many times did we cross that bridge?
There's a Historical Room, a museum of memorabilia, located in the main library. Mr. Briggs, now retired from teaching, is the volunteer curator and spends almost every day attending the collection. Anyone with anything to donate from our era is encouraged to do so.

Here's Mr. Briggs in his office just outside the Historical Room.

Mr. Briggs inside the room among the 'artifacts' he is constantly updating and rearranging.

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