Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Tom Hurd

Thanks so much for your heartwarming update. You put into words what many of us were also feeling before the reunion - the whole 'growing old' issue - HA! And what a beautiful family you have, Tom.


It was nice to chat with you for a few moments at the Sat night reunion event at the Sheraton. You look wonderful to be so old (just like me, but don't tell anyone)! OK, jokes over, we can get out of these old people costumes.

I've included a picture of the "Hurd" in 1992, "Hurd" in 1997, and Linda, Alex and me in 2006. I think we have a more recent picture of our entire immediate family, but I couldn't find it. We're living on opposite sides of the country from each other and the Florida kids may actually have it. I wasn't sure how long or short my narrative should be, but since I'm full of hot air, it's long! If you have to shorten it, so be it Cathy. Thanks for doing this for all of us BHS'ers.

I nearly didn't show up, as I actually became depressed about being so........old! My second daughter Stacia said, "Gee Dad, aren't you glad you skipped all those grades?" (as if to say very nicely that I'm not really old enough yet to be attending my 40 year high school reunion)! But after emailing back and forth with Deanna (Lloyd) Jennings and Andrea Moxness, I realized the folly of my thinking, ignored my depression, bought my ticket, and showed up. I'm ever so glad I did, as it was a great time for me to see many of our friends from BHS.

I haven't seen but just a very few classmates over the years, seeing most people only at these reunions. I've kept track of Alan Singer, living nearby in the SF Valley. Phil Anderegg has dropped off the radar, as well as Jim Thompson, who was a violinist with me, starting in the seventh grade at John Muir Jr. High orchestra with Mr. Manning, and then later on in the BHS orchestra during musical productions. Several other close friends have scattered as well.

Once, about nine years ago, my wife and I took our sons (two youngest of my "Hurd" of five kids) to England and stayed a few days with Sally (Edwards) Pawlik in her home near London. She was a great hostess, entertaining me with some great wine and company 'til 3:00a.m. the first night, reminiscing about many of you people from the BHS class of ’67, while showing the four of us Oxford, Cambridge, Blenheim Palace, etc. during the daytime!

At our reunion "confrontations," we are rather abruptly reminded of the passage of time, the ravages of the aging process. But, after only a few seconds of seeing each other again, we look past the wrinkles, scars, varicose veins, age spots, and chub, to see into the eyes of our great friends from our past! I really think it's a wonderful experience. Many of our classmates look great, you included, Cathy. It was nice seeing you and so many of our great friends that weekend in Sept.

Thanks for getting this going, Cathy. I thought "blog" was a four letter dirty word, only very recently learning what it meant! It still can be like a dirty word, if you don't post “nicely,” but at least now I know what it is!

My life in a nutshell: I've been a general dentist in my own practice in Lompoc, CA for 30 years. People do “life sentences” (that 30 year thing sounds like that to me) at the prison facilities ten miles away! I've been married twice, I have five children, with one still at home as a junior in high school. The two oldest (daughters) live in Florida near Daytona Beach, one son in Santa Barbara (on a boat in the harbor), another son at Cal Poly SLO, and last son at home as junior in high school. The kids are from age 32 down to 16 years, with the oldest and youngest having the same birthday. It was the least I could do to give them the same birthday as the age difference could otherwise tend to separate them! They have all been great kids, thanks to their mothers! My children are promising to turn out better than I did. My goodness, my mental challenges led to dentistry for heaven sakes. Nevertheless, dentistry has been good to me, it's still fun, but enough of a good thing already. I want to transition out of my practice over the next six or seven years and perhaps move our primary residence to Cambria, CA.

One of my dreams is to finish an airplane that I am building before I retire (after youngest, Alex, graduates from college in about six years). Though I've been displeased when I've unintentionally given free dentistry (when patients elect not to pay me), I'm looking forward, in my retirement, to giving away dental service to those who really need it! God willing, I plan to fly out of Paso Robles or SLO, CA, go all over North America, enjoying the great scenery along the way, and deliver my style of missionary dentistry (my choice who gets it free this time)!

I'm looking forward to the next time we BHS classmates can meet each other again. Life on earth is very short, so we better plan on tighter intervals between visits. Jeanne (Barron) Aikman’s mom recently told me that she and her classmates have taken wonderful trips and “cruises” together, which sounds great to me. I'm not an event planner, but I'm game to go if someone puts a good adventure together. Many people would need plenty of notice to plan for the time away and the money for the function, but it could be done. Got dreams?

I hope to see anyone attending the 100 year BHS celebration next fall.

Love to all you great BHS classmates.

Tom Hurd
805-733-0143 hm
805-736-6579 wk

P.S. Questions are seldom answered over the phone anymore, but by email instead. I've included my numbers anyway for your convenience if needed for any reason. I don't care if anyone gets my numbers, or email address, but I prefer no commercial sales attempts, as I have extreme sales resistance!!!! But if someone wants to "keep me" (i.e. retire me and send me money), that's OK. I'm open to that!

Bob and Tom Holst

I could never tell you guys apart! Okay, Bob is on the left and Tom is on the right... Yes??

Email to Cathy Nicholls from Bob Holst:

Hi Cathy:
I'm so glad to hear from you and I don't mind at all if you send the picture to Cathy Palmer. In fact, I'd rather have someone do it other than me cause I'm not as proficient at this as you and Carol.

Boy, those pic's of the fire were incredible. Please know that I have been praying for those people ever since I heard the news on T.V., and out of every tragedy comes a blessing. Don't worry, God is still in control!!!

Anyway, I sure like this computer stuff. I should have started it years ago, so please forgive my inefficiency. You still can teach an old dog some new tricks.

Keep in touch,

Here is Bob's photo taken at Seven Springs Lodge in Pittsburgh, PA.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Henny Porter

Below are more photos from the California fires some of which were sent in by Henny. We continue to pray for protection and safety.

Hi Cathy,

Thought you might like to share these pics of the fires in California. The photography is incredible.

Henny Porter Golnick

Dear God,
Please keep them safe.
Please keep their homes, pets, and families safe.
Please convince people that no house is worth their lives, and that they need to evacuate when asked.
Please keep people off their cell phones so the firefighters can use the lines.
God, please let them all be okay.

California wildfire overall statistics:
_Acreage: 505,279.
_Homes destroyed: 1,790.
_Deaths: Seven directly due to fire
_Injuries: 71 firefighters, 27 civilians.
_Evacuees: 4,403 people in 28 shelters.
_Firefighting cost: $9 million.

Friday, October 26, 2007

Fire Update

We are thankful to the Lord and taking a huge sigh of relief to hear that Cathy Nicholls Coyle and her family made it safely through the fires in southern California. Below is her email along with her daughter-in-law's email with photos.

Email from Cathy...

Hi Cathy:

We fared well during the Buckweed; Magic and Ranch Fires. Travis and his family spent two nights at our house because the flames came too close to their home and trailer (as you can see in the photos.)

Thanks for your prayers. I truly believe it helped!


P.S. My son, Travis, Melissa and our two grandchildren live in Castaic. Their fire was called the Ranch Fire. The fires located on either side of us were: The Magic Fire (located by Magic Mountain) and the Buckweed Fire (originating in Agua Dulce).

Email from Cathy's daughter-in-law...

I thought I would share some of the photos I took from the Ranch and Magic fires by my house over the past week. It was CRAZY!

This is what the Buckweed Fire looked like from the back of my house on Monday morning.....EEEEEK!!

This is looking at the Ranch Fire toward Hasley Canyon.... If you look closely, you can see the flames and the burned areas.

This is the Magic Fire... We were informed by the Sheriff to come and get our trailer from the Travel Village where it is stored... and this is what we got to see when we were picking up the trailer... TOO CLOSE!!!

We thank God for all the hard working fire fighters who saved our home and those of our friends and neighbors.

Melissa Coyle

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Jon and Pam Zipfel Kirkwood BHS '64

Jon and Pam Kirkwood have a wonderful email they send out which gives updated news on their classmates as well as other grads too. I asked Pam if she would tell us about "The Loop" and send a few pics which she did! Thanks so much, Pam and Jon!!

Hi Cathy...

That would be fun to appear on your Blog...Thank you so much...

As far as other links...I think you have most of them that I know of, already...Don Ray's blog, you have...Do you have Stan Lynch's Burbank Blog? or Wes Clark's blog about growing up in Burbank in the 50's "Avocado Memories"?

I was thinking too, that maybe you might want to mention the "Senior Bulldog Foundation" (if you haven't already). It is an alumni group (non profit) that meets on the first Monday of every month (unless it is a holiday, then it is the second Monday) at the Burbank Elks Lodge located at 2232 N. Hollywood Way in Burbank. It is an informal luncheon gathering...Lunch is $12 and the time is 11AM...Any BHS grad from any year is welcome. Once a year, the Senior Bulldogs give out several $1,000 scholarships to qualified BHS Seniors who are graduating and going on to college. These funds are collected strictly through donations...We hold no fund raisers.

The Senior Bulldogs also send out a monthly newsletter. Anyone interested in receiving the newsletter should contact Herb Vincent chvincent1@aol.com and provide their name (for girls he needs maiden and married name), mailing address, phone number, email address and the year you graduated.

Below, I have written a little about how the "Loop" started...

The "Loop" began in about 2003, when our BHS Class of '64 Reunion Committee was starting to plan our 40th Reunion. Some classmates wanted to hold it at the Queen Mary and have a rather "fancy" affair...Others of us preferred to have a more "casual" party at a Burbank venue. Having been from the same class of '64, Jon and I knew lots of classmates and we had email addresses for many of them. When writing them, we mentioned the dilemma about where we were going to hold the Reunion...A few sent back their preferences..We decided to poll everyone we could contact by email. Before we knew it, we had gathered quite a number of email addresses from our class, as others would send us contacts for people they had kept in touch with...We began to send out frequent messages to everyone, keeping them all abreast of how the Reunion Plans were progressing...Our mailing list grew and grew...

The "Loop" started to become a wonderful way to find missing classmates and to share the excitement leading up to our "Big Event". As it turned out, we had the biggest and best Reunion ever, with around 300 attending...Everyone seemed to appreciate the way the "Loop" had brought our class closer together...It was a more personal way to include people, especially those who had NEVER attended a Reunion and were apprehensive and needed re-assurance...Many asked if we were going to continue it...and so, we have...

Over a period of time, the "Loop" kind of "morphed" into what it is today...We opened it up to all the classes and we have become a huge "family". To date, we have nearly 500 classmates "Looping" with us...even a few from Burroughs! We share memories, nostalgia, photos, big events like the births of grandchildren, family weddings, retirements...We try to be a support group for those who are ill or who have suffered losses. We also try to keep everyone up on what is happening in "Loopland" a.k.a. Burbank and we have helped to "re-connect' many old friends who had lost each other over the years...

Hopefully, the "Loop" is a place our friends and classmates can go once a week or so, no matter where in the world they are... and feel like they are back home, where they grew up...

One other good thing that has resulted from all of this is that most all of the folks who "head up" the various BHS Class Reunions from each graduating class, are now in touch with each other...We help each other locate missing people and share information...Chances are, if anyone is looking for someone, between all of us, we usually can find the person.

If you are not already "Looping" with us and would like to... Just email us at pamkirkwood@yahoo.com We need to know your name (for girls, we need maiden name and married name), the year you graduated and your email address...There is no charge for this.

Thanks for the chance to tell your bloggers about our "Loop", Cathy...You are doing a FABULOUS job in helping to connect our very "special" group of BHS Classmates...

Pam Zipfel Kirkwood BHS '64 and Jon Kirkwood BHS '64

Monday, October 22, 2007

California Fires

Cathy Nicholls Coyle and her family are among many who live near these raging fires, so please keep them all in your prayers!

Hey Cathy:
Maybe you would like to put this City of Santa Clarita Emergency website on your blog:
City of Santa Clarita Fire Updates.

I have also attached a couple photos I took from our backyard of the Westridge/Stevenson's Ranch fire. It is located right next to Magic Mountain. It is about 2 miles from us. I hope it doesn't get any closer. There is also a fire in Canyon Country about 5 miles from us. We heard earlier this afternoon that there was a fire right next to the Odyssey Restaurant off of the 405 freeway.

Your friend,

A Local State of Emergency Has Been Declared for the City of Santa Clarita

View Larger Map

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Bicentennial Meeting at BHS on Oct. 17, 2007

Thanks so much Cathy for going to the meeting and sending us a great report along with wonderful photos. It will be a fun time as we will also have a class breakfast at Joan and Fred Ortega's!

Hi Cathy:

Just wanted to give you a run down on the BHS Centennial Meeting we attended at the new BHS Library last week. The meeting opened with a few members of the Choir singing our Alma Mater. I'm sure every one of the alumnus in the room were singing along with them. I know I was. Distinguished alumni in attendance were: Dale Kristien, who played Christine in "Phantom of the Opera" and Enjolras in "Les Miserables" and a Class of 1925 graduate who is now 100 years old!

We met with David Thompson, (a History teacher), that is spearheading the entire organization of the Centennial Celebration.

Dave told us he recognized us from viewing your blog! He said that you have been a wonderful help to him and was very thankful that you had sent in your Bob's Car Hop hat because there were so many alumni that had mentioned going to Bob's as part of their high school years. He is going to do a special section on Bob's and was asking for any Bob's Big Boy memorabilia that alumni would like to donate to the school.

Fred Cook, who was one of the football coaches when my son, Travis, was attending BHS (1987-1990), is now the Athletic Director and was modeling the T-shirt ($10) and cap ($20) that they are selling to promote the affair. They will also be selling other merchandise later on.

Linda Mustion was there and introduced me to a fellow 1967 alumni, Judy Shalhoub.

Judy is now the Culinary Arts Instructor (we used to call it "Foods".) Her students made lots of yummy cookies! She has been teaching at BHS for the past 8 years and told us that there are 10 other teachers there that are alumni of BHS!

I took photos of the new BHS library. Wow! If the library looked like that during our high school years I would have actually used it! I can't even remember going into the school library. I guess I always just went to the Burbank Central Library.

Annette Dinolfo Bennett from the Class of '68 was there. She told us that she keeps in touch regularly with the Holst twins. They are both living within a mile of each other in Pittsburgh , Pennsylvania . I got a chance to speak to Bob on the phone and he just sounds great! He is retired now and enjoys: snow skiing and working on the computer. He says he has viewed the photos of the Reunion on your blog and that we all look great! He says that he will be emailing you soon.

10/29/07 UPDATE: Bob Holst sent Carol and Cathy Nicholls this photo taken in 2005 at Seven Springs Lodge in Pittsburgh, PA - HI BOB!

The plans for the upcoming Centennial sound really fun. They will be holding a Re-dedication of the War Memorial Plaque in May, 2008. In September, they will be conducting tours of the new BHS; holding a parade; Bar B Que's and Class Reunions. They will have displays of: BHS history; Memorabilia; Distinguished Alumni; and the Athletic Hall of Fame. They will be remounting our old "PRIDE" sign and will be duplicating the BHS Centennial on one of the new Basketball courts (they now have 2 courts!) They will also be hanging old CIF Championship banners.

They are hoping that they can get a lot of help so that they can make this Centennial a great success! Not to mention the wonderful website that they are setting up where you can find out anything you want to know about the upcoming event... And, in the future, you will be able to find out all kinds of information on upcoming Alumni Reunions!

At the end of the meeting they invited us to sign up for a Committee. I signed up for the Memorabilia Committee as I have my Uncle's old band cape that I am going to donate. He graduated from BHS in 1940.

His name, Thomas Hunter, is one of the names listed on the War Memorial Plaque. He was a pilot for the RAF and was killed during a mission flying over Hong Kong during World War II. My Uncle Tommy was drafted. My Grandma went to the draft board and told them that he was her sole support as her husband was ill. Tommy did not want to be left behind. All his friends were going in and he wanted to serve, so he joined the British Royal Air Force.

Your friend, Cathy

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Don Ray's Blog

Read about Don's current adventures in Baku!
Don Ray's Blog

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Video Fun







Thursday, October 4, 2007

Bob's Carhop Cap

Today I mailed my Bob's carhop cap to David Thomson at Burbank High who is organizing the BHS Centennial next year for their display. So if you have anything to donate, contact Dave at thomson.david@burbankusd.org.

Here is his Oct 2, 2007 email:

Hi Cathy,

Thanks for your note and awesome greeting. You can send the hat to Burbank High School, 902 N. Third St., Burbank CA 91502 care of/attention Dave Thomson. I will archive it and want to use it in the museum display of the school’s history. There is no rush as we will not put the display together until next spring, but I promise to take good care of it whenever you send it.

I will add the Class of 1967 Breakfast on Sunday as TBA, and let me know whenever you have more details. I will check with you before the website goes up in mid-November, but think it’s great you guys are having that event. It should be a very special weekend. I am meeting with a publisher tomorrow to finalize plans to produce a coffee table type book on the history of the school, so I may need some more BHS and Bob’s stories from you.

Thanks again and take care.


Joan Nobile and Fred Ortega (BHS '65)

Joan and Fred, BIG Congratulations to your beautiful daughter, Officer Kristiana! And we all look forward to the Class of '67 Breakfast at your home next year on Sunday, September 14, 2008. Cheers!

Sure you may post the email I sent to Pam and Jon on your blog (which, by the way, is too much fun to read!).

We are very proud of Kristiana. I know she will be a wonderful officer.

I am looking forward to next years class-reunion breakfast at our house…I believe you and I finally came to the agreement that it would be on the Sunday of all the festivities, correct? As it gets closer, we can firm up the time and let people know more about it. (truthfully, I am not even sure if I told Fredo about it…) but no problem…he’s always up for entertaining…and breakfast is a fun meal to put together for a crowd!

Catch up w/u later…I have sooo much work to do! (wishing I was retired right about now!) jmo


Hi again…just a quick note…I talked to Fred about it and he seemed excited about a breakfast reunion…I knew he would! (he’s a very social person, in case you didn’t notice!!)


It was lots of fun seeing old friends and renewing old friendships at the reunion. I have made a promise to myself not to let such a longtime go without speaking with some of them...We all seem so busy and life is passing by quickly.

I have some news to share...with you; Our middle daughter, Kristiana was sworn in last night as a Police Officer. Fred and I and her sister Nikki and brother Michael are very proud of her. I am proud to say that I did not cry through the entire ceremony, (just part of it) but starting at the National Anthem and Pledge of Allegiance, I was pretty choked up. We had quite a crowd attend Kristiana's graduation, including some BHS grads and relatives, Emilio Ortega '61 or '62, not sure, Chris Ortega O'Neill "68 ~ (Fred's brother and sister ~ and their spouses); Gary and Karen (Shield) Smestad '64 along with their son Jeff, who's a Ventura County Sheriff Deputy. Mickey DePalo '64 attended too. My sister Peggy Nobile Erickson (she graduated from Bell Jeff '60) and her grandson Anthony came too. Kristiana's boyfriend and his two brothers and families were there as well. It was a touching ceremony, something we will never forget. We are all excited about Kristiana's new career as one of Burbank 's finest! Tomorrow's the big family celebration...wish us luck!

Take care. See you sometime!

Joan Ortega

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Stephanie Castelletti

Thanks so much for your fantastic update, Stepahanie ! And BIG CONGRATS to your daughter - I know you and Jack are very proud parents.

Hi Cathy,

Your blog is wonderful! Since I wasn’t able to attend our reunion, I’ve enjoyed and appreciated all the photos and postings by our classmates. Thank you for putting the blog together for all of us. And thank you to all of our classmates who responded with photos and life stories.

You are probably wondering what I have been up to the last 40 years. Life has been interesting and wonderful at the same time. I feel very blessed to have lived the life I have with the family and friends who have been with us along the way. I have a wonderful daughter Cember, who is 27 year’s old, husband Jack, and a 115# chocolate lab named Koa. We still live on San Juan Island in Washington.

After graduation from high school we moved to Seattle and I proceeded to go to school for business and merchandising which led me to work for Nordstrom as an assistant buyer and then Jay Jacobs’s Washington and Alaska as a cosmetic and hosiery buyer.

By 1972, I wanted to travel and joined Continental Airlines as a flight attendant. In 1973 I married my husband Jack. In 1976, we moved to Laguna Beach to get out of the cold weather, Jack opened a deli and I flew Hawaii trips. Then we moved to Guam where I worked for Continental Air Micronesia flying to Japan, Honolulu, and the Micronesian Islands. Small world, Michael Lewis worked there also.

In 1980, after returning to Seattle, I gave birth to our daughter Cember. We are so proud of her. She is now 27 and graduated from law school in San Francisco in May, took the bar exam in July, and then started her new job in Sacramento at an environment law firm on September 10th. She is very passionate about making the world a better place to live. After the bar exam, she flew to Sardinia for three weeks (she speaks Italian) and then I met her in London for a mother daughter trip to Portugal for ten days. What fun we had! From there she traveled to Copenhagen for a week and I went to Vegas to be with my mother who was going to have breast cancer surgery and treatment. I’m happy to say mom is doing very well.

In 1983 I went to work for Evans Furs of Chicago. Evans owned/leased all the fur salons in the Nordstrom stores and I was the assistant buyer in the Seattle store. I was promoted to the buyer for the San Diego Nordstrom store. Nine months later we moved to Long Beach and I was promoted to the Los Angeles store of Robinson’s as a Division Merchandise Manager for 22 stores. It was a wonderful job and very challenging. Jack had his own successful seafood brokerage business in Long Beach.

July 1985 we quit our jobs and set sail for Hawaii on our custom wood boat sloop rig, “By the Wind.” We left a bit late and ran into hurricane season so we ended up going to San Diego and then to Mexico for the winter. This was the experience of a life time. Cember was five and a great traveler but when she said “it's margarita time”, we decided we had to go back to our old life and get her in school. In April of 1986 we had our boat shipped back to Seattle and purchased our first home. We began buying and selling real estate and working as realtors in Seattle.

In 1989, we purchased a beautiful 82 acre property surrounded by three lakes with a campground located on San Juan Island. It was a great life. For years we had horses but sold them when Cember went into high school since sports took over her life. We became contractors building six deluxe two bedroom two bath log cottages on the lake where the riding arena and paddock had been and converted the stable into a check-in office. Then we were in the lodging business.

In 1997 we built a house for ourselves and then in 2001 a guest lodge on the lake with ten guest rooms with a large great room and dining room. We created far more work for ourselves than we had intended but it was a great success and nice addition to the island. You can check it out at www.Lakedale.com

In 2005 we sold our home, our business, our property and started a new life. Last summer we took our Pacific Trawler to Alaska up the Inside Passage for three months. It was a trip to remember, especially for Koa. We are currently in the vacation rental business and our web site is www.vagabondo-llc.com. This summer we also completed construction on a house we built for resale.

While we haven’t slowed down and still have been buying and selling real estate, I’m ready for the simple life. We love to play tennis and contemplate being somewhere warm in the winters with our dog Koa. We aren’t sure where that will be but look forward to the next adventure in our lives.

So, that’s what we have been doing with our life. It’s never dull and my only complaints are that life seems to be going by too fast and I don’t feel nearly as old as I am. Does anyone else feel this way? I wish I could have been at the reunion with all of our friends and would love to hear from anyone who would like to drop me a line at

See you all next time!

Stephanie (Castelletti) Piccon

Monday, October 1, 2007

Donna Luce Reunion Photos

Thanks for all the pics Donna - you got some great shots! Happy Trails!

Cathy Nicholls, Donna Luce and Joan Nobile

Joan (Nobile) and Fred Ortega

Cathy (Nicholls) and John Coyle

Kay Rodenberg and Elaine Morton

Joan Ely and Ron Panich

Ron and Joan (Lundigan) Panich, Chris Morris and John Peterson

Joan Nobile, Jay Todd and Scott Bruckner

Freddy Ortega and John Coyle

Patty Hardinghaus, Dona Foy and Marilyn Williams

Donna Luce and Jim Grasse

Anson Heimlick (Williams - you know, Potsie) and Flora Angel

Donna Luce and Mary Brotsis

Don Ray, Neal Hershenson, Ron and Karen (Lundigan) Panich