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Out of all the musicians that HHS has had through the years. From Chris Montez to the Beach Boys to David Marks to Ted Gioia, there's one GREAT musician that stands out. Yes, It's Bob Rierdan HHS61. Not because of what he's done on the Top 40 Charts down through the years. Nope, he's the very FIRST HHS musician to write a song about Cougartown. Yes, all the others had their chance, but NOOOOO, it was Bob Rierdan who came through. Bob, I thank you for your beautiful rendition, and lets all Give It Up for Bob Rierdan, and "Cougartown Blues". Cougartown Blues Great birthday present Bob. Thanks a bunch. The early 60's guys have still got it.

Name: Robin Northup () on Monday, September 6, 1999 at 12:50:49
Maiden: MacLean
Class: 69
Message: I have enjoyed reading all the pages since I found this site last month. I was so excited to hear about the reunion coming up in October. But I regret to say that I am unable to attend after all. My mother passed away on August 25th and with all the details that need to be taken care of I cannot get away. Nebraska is alot farther than you think. Ha Ha. Anyway, class of 69, have a great time and send me some e-mail after the reunion to let me know who all showed up. I got in touch with a couple of friends and wish that I could make the trip. 30 years is a long time.

Name: LEEROY FELDERRUSTER () on Monday, September 6, 1999 at 11:56:39
Class: 55
Message: HOWDY!
Rosis is red
Vilolets is blue
Ifn youse aint no cougar
youse be puppy poo

Very eloquent LeeRoy, but the T-shirt slogans have already been chosen.

Name: Frank A. Romano () on Monday, September 6, 1999 at 11:18:56
Class: 1961
Message: JB... I just caught up on the last couple of pages, and noted that you have confused Prince Robin's roll with that of a crash dummy. Really! Commanding Robin to field sweater retorts. But on the other hand....that's why the King is King... I do hope that our cougartown visitors (Mom B & Clan and Karen) to Las Vegas enjoyed their time here, helping to keep the desert green. Really, I do hope you had fun, and that you at least have your pocket lint to remember the visit. Gardner McKay was a sailing buddy of Kenneth Murphy. Ken owned Kenneth Chevrolet. About 1960 or so, Ken brought a half dozen boat builders to the mainland from Hawaii to build a Catamaran. It was built at a hangar at Hawthorne airport. She was 46 feet long, carried a 55 foot mast, and would cruise at a sweet 26 knots in low wind conditions. The last time I remember sailing on her, it was Gardner McKay, Ken Murphy and a few of us... We had a lobster (shorts) cookout on a beach near Santa Monica, we were kicked off the beach by the local cops because of the open fire.... So we returned to Marina Del Rey, and went to the Movies. We managed to be asked to leave the Chinese Theater because of a pop corn throwing incident. There was a rumor that there may have been some drinking involved also. I didn't see the end of Von Ryan's Express for about ten years later.
Frank, Great stuff on the Kenneth Murphy story. Was he any relation to Bill Murphy Buick in Culver City?
As you can see, Robin has already jumped ship on the sweater issue.

Name: Sandy Cooper () on Monday, September 6, 1999 at 05:11:32
Maiden: Peppers
Class: 63
Message: Another reunion of friends, fun, lots of laughs, lots of hugs, and a very strong bond between women. I have the most wonderful girlfriends. They flew in and drove in from all over. We had such a great time together. Even though some of us hadn't seen one another for over thirty something years, we are still as close as we were back in the sixties. Honestly, nothing has changed the closeness we had in high school. John Baker, once again we thank you, we love you and soooo appreciate you starting cougartown... Group Pic from back left to right: Marsha Russell, Barbara Norris Westrope, Cody Soares Weathers, Stephanie Hall Brito, Sherry Peppers Wingo, me, Paula Chapin Rogers, Marsha Soares West, Dorothy Johnston Slawson, Jacquie White Cook, Marguerite Melchert VonKolen, Pam Duncan Earnhardt. John if the pic is not too dark of us showing our appreciation to one of the sweetest guys on the planet who came over to BBQ for us, let me I.D. him for you is our special friend Dick Slawson.
Thanks Sandy, Now see folks, these people have NO PROBLEM getting a group together for some good old Cougar fun. I especially like that Dick Slawson action.

Name: Robin () on Sunday, September 5, 1999 at 20:15:33
E-Mail: nope nope nope...
Maiden: Angora
Class: 60
Message: No where, no way, no how am I going there John.
ChancesR paints a pretty picture, but sweater or no sweater, this boy has sawed his oars, thrown them overboard and will float adrift before his her old "Navy Sweetie" dethrones me...byeeeee :o)

OK then, be a coward.

Name: Eugene () on Sunday, September 5, 1999 at 11:49:11
Class: 1958
Message: Glad to see this page, good and bad memories surfaced because of it, mostly good. In my family we had 3 of us graduate from HHS. James in 1960 and Sandra in 1962. I was not one of the "Surfers" (Do not remember them being a very big thing in the 50's). Question; What the heck is a "HODAD", I was considered a "HOOD" because I wore my hair in a ducktail and mostly wore pegger slacks with a white shirt. Never have forgotten the time a bunch of the jock's tried to cut my hair. That one caused a bit of a hassle and was truamatic for all. By the way, they did not succeed, that failure probably was due the the fear of the Coach catching them more than my own might and fighting prowess. I believe Coach Chauncey was his name. Him, I remember with pleasure, I ran track under his wing, did pretty good too.

Name: Joyce Chance () on Saturday, September 4, 1999 at 23:52:22
Maiden: Savisky
Class: '62
Message: I have a memory for the ladies BBS (Before Bucket Seats) Remember how we use to slide into our Sweeties car on the drivers side and sit as close to him as possible with our arm around him? I remember the first time my Navy Sweetie picked me up from school wearing his dark blue uniform, wool I think, and I was wearing a white Angora sweater! Need I say more? I don't think I ever wore that sweater again when he was home on leave :o)
I won't touch that last line with a ten foot oar. Robin, you want to field this one??

Name: Jim West () on Saturday, September 4, 1999 at 22:50:15
Class: 1961
Message: Sandy and Jim wish everyone a happy Labor Day weekend.
Hey Jim, Same to you and yours.

Name: karen () on Saturday, September 4, 1999 at 21:14:07
E-Mail: kuehl
Class: 59
Message: Hey Frank, add 2 more to the list visiting Vegas this weekend. Gary and I are coming up on Sunday and going home on Tuesday. So I guess that makes 250,004 visitors? Hope everyone has a safe and fun Labor Day!
Thanks Karen, You and Gary have a safe one also, and try to hang onto the family fortune.

Name: Sharon MacDonald () on Saturday, September 4, 1999 at 21:13:12
Maiden: Badger
Class: 63
Message: Yeah, that Kooky was the ginchiest! But I gave my heart to Gardner McKay. I can remember the name of his boat and the name of the series, but not the character he played. Does any one remember it? It is one old show that has rarely been see in syndication; I heard that because it was shot in black & white there isn't any market for it.
Adam Troy, Adventures in Paradise. . . . . . . Do I get an "A" in Couch Potato or what!!!

Name: Denny U () on Saturday, September 4, 1999 at 20:50:18
Class: 55
Message: Being a native SEXagenarian my memories might be a bit different than those that are younger. I remember: The smoke from the kerosene smudge pots at LAX on foggy nights. *** Pinky the Hawthorne Cop that gave me a lift on the back of his 3 wheel motorcycle when I ran out gas. ***Growing vegetables in the Victory garden at Wiseburn school during World War II, later the school was renamed Dana. *** The P38 plane that crashed on Aviation Blvd. in front of Dana. *** When the few houses which comprised Del Aire were zoned RA (residential, agricultural) .*** Chapman Chinchilla Farm. *** Imperial Farms market on Prairie & Imperial. *** Before there was a Holly Glen or most of Del Aire and riding with Adolph Leuzinger in his Model T Ford across the fields while he checked his crops. *** Building a crystal set radio before TV was around. *** Delivering newspapers (The Herald Express) for 2 cents profit. *** Talking to Engineers of the steam locomotives that switched the rail cars around alongside Aviation Blvd. (2 lanes then) *** Counting the bright stars in the Milky Way. (no street lights) *** Putting 2 dimes in a cigarette machine and getting a pack of Luckys with 3 pennies inside, also a nickel in the Coke machine and giving the service station attendant 2 cents to take the bottle. *** The brightest thing in the sky to the S/E at a distance of 2 miles was the red neon PLAZA sign on top of the theater. *** Raising chickens and riding our horses across the fields from 120th St. to Rosecrans and only crossing El Segundo Blvd. (2 lanes lined with trees), and 135th St. (just wide enough for 2 cars to pass) .*** My father taking target practice at cabbage plants from the front porch. (try that one now) *** Trying to bathe with very little water so as not to fill up the septic tank. (no sewers) *** My fathers 46 foot fishing boat blocked up on the property for renovation. I kept the bait tank full of water for a cool dip. *** Trying to hear the movies at the Century Drive-In with the windows up. (prop driven aircraft landed very slowly) Whew!!! Just a few out of many memories and except for most of the above not much has changed.
Great memories Denny. Man, I can remember some of those too.
This is for Bob Fraser HHS60. Does anyone remember the tree house north of 120th on Freeman, Menlo, or Oxford? .......some girls house?

Name: Judy DeGrazia () on Saturday, September 4, 1999 at 20:23:31
Class: 64
Message: Sharon McDonald. Correction...Kooky said " You're the GINCHIEST "

Name: Judy DeGrazia () on Saturday, September 4, 1999 at 20:19:54
Maiden: oh please.
Class: 64
Message: Sharon McDonald.. Kooky used to say "YOU'RE THE ULTIMATE"
"You're the Ultimate, the Maximum, The Utmost!!!" "Baby, you're the Ginchiest" uh, don't go there Judy.

Name: Eugene Nemish () on Saturday, September 4, 1999 at 17:18:11
Class: 58
Message: Wondering if there are any out there from the earlier yet years.
Hi Eugene, Heck yes. Cougartown's gottem farther back than 58. You're a mere puppy compared to some of them. Thanks for checking in and don't be a stranger here.

Name: Frank A. Romano () on Saturday, September 4, 1999 at 13:51:39
Class: 1961
Message: GEES! I hope that Mom "B" and her clan exchange the nickels for a larger denomination. Nickel machines are just about the worst bet on the planet, say and except for the "Big Wheel" O'well... I keep forgetting its called entertainment these days.... Some fun!!! I've always found it great fun to leave 35% of what I bet at a game! Best times for sure...Someone mentioned some of the old talk show hosts... Do you remember Oscar Levant! Great wit, and played a mean piano too! Prince Robin's been just a little to quiet of late...JB. He must be preparing for "Homecoming"
Hi Frank, I think he's practicing up for the, "I shot an arrow into the air and it came to rest in the top of a Belair" contest, at the after-game picnic.

Name: CHERYL ANN () on Saturday, September 4, 1999 at 13:39:07
Class: 62
Message: "ON THE WATERFRONT" WOW! That took me right back to York Ave School, in the 3rd grade. "TUGBOAT" That nickname stuck till I moved back to Minnesota in the 5th grade. I never took offense back then, when I looked more like "Olive Oil". NOW, I'de deck em..........
OK Cheryl Ann, please control yourself. You're sounding a little like V6 in thew HHS Admin. office.

Name: Betty Rodriguez () on Saturday, September 4, 1999 at 10:28:34
Maiden: Kean
Class: 69
Message: This question is for the Ctown ladies - does anyone remember characters from the TV series, Peyton Place? I remember Alison, Rodney, Norman, Betty, Mike Rossi, Constance MacKensie. My 11 yr old just caught the movie version on AMC. Is she too young???

Name: Sharon MacDonald () on Friday, September 3, 1999 at 22:36:14
Maiden: Badger
Class: 63
Message: Oh, the PI shows - how many of us female Cougars swooned when we heard Kooky claim something was the _____________ (fill in the blank). Kooky, Kooky lend me your comb!

Name: Jerry Miles () on Friday, September 3, 1999 at 21:59:43
Class: 66
Message: OK Class of '66. I just counted the Alumni list and there are more than seventy of us. Eight of you must have an extra ten bucks to help save Nyman Hall. Just consider it past due rent for some of those times you spent sleeping during the boring movies. Or if you enjoyed one of the movies or plays you saw, time to pay the piper. In case you've forgotten that's
John Baker
PO Box1406
Lomita, CA 90717

Name: Don Di Tomasso () on Friday, September 3, 1999 at 20:32:22
Class: 75
Message: I entered my homepage incorrectly in my last post. It should be

Name: Bob Veach () on Friday, September 3, 1999 at 20:06:32
Class: 72
Message: My gosh, what has happened to the kids of today? I had to go to Manhattan Beach today for business and ended up on The Strand and 34th St. Looking south towards the MB pier, I could count maybe 50 people tops, and it was a GORGEOUS day! In our day, we used to have more people then that just in the parking lot at 26th St drinking beer. Are people that scared of "the damage of UV rays"?
Come on kids, get out from behind those video game controllers and get to the beach. Go steal the pepperoni off your friend's slice of Zeppy's pizza or the ice out of his Orange Bang (and then run like hell because you know he's going to beat the crap outta ya); go jump off the MB or HB piers and get chased by lifeguards; go pour a cup full of sand crabs on the back of some sun tanning girl who untied the top of her bikini. Go watch a guy surf in his boxer shorts because he forgot his trunks, then when the fly tore open, he just put them on backwards; you can see those people from Europe roaming around with their white bodies and "tourist tighties" swim suit that barely covered their butts. Be brave (or really stupid) and surf the pilings at MB.
Let's go people of Cougartown, spread the word. Get these kids out to the beach so they can also experience this good clean fun that we had. And most important, it was FREE (except for the beer)! I never saw so much empty beach, it looked like a resort.

Hi Bob, I see you've been there too I think instead of the beach, people were getting ready to go out of town today for the long weekend.

Name: Carol () on Friday, September 3, 1999 at 18:39:45
Maiden: Singleton
Class: 64
Message: I don't think anyone has mentioned these "hot spots" when adding to the "remember that/when?" list:
The Mark IV for good prime rib, steak & lobster
Dave Brubeck playing at a Newport Beach night-spot
Martin Denny (jungle sounds with jazz) playing at Latitude 20.
Am still trying to locate a Morningside High grad from around 1960 by the name of Rudy Rudenshire - played guitar and hung out with my sister, Mary Ellen. He liked to scuba dive off Palos Verdes. Anyone know where he is or how to locate him? E-mail me with any info you may have and I'll send it on to Mary Ellen.

Hi Carol, I remember the Latitude 20 on PCH. I think it was there until the early 80's

Name: Maria () on Friday, September 3, 1999 at 18:19:19
Maiden: Ortiz
Class: 1988
Message: Hi John,
I have been wondering when the 10 year reunion for the class of 1988 was or is? I pass by HHS everyday and never saw a posting for our class. Can you please find out anything for me. This was how I became aware of your web.
Thank You
Maria Ortiz
Class of 1988

Maria, I think you can forget about your 10 year reunion and maybe start working on your 15 year reunion. Sorry.......

Name: Myrna Bell () on Friday, September 3, 1999 at 17:38:02
Maiden: Bell
Class: 66
Message: I wish everyone a safe and fun Labor Day weekend. We will spend it in San Luis Obispo, so Tuesday will be catch up day for CT. Does anyone remember what group sponsored the all you can eat pancake breakfasts in the Safeway parking lot at 122nd and Hawthorne Blvd? How about Kenneth Chevrolet having the windows covered up until the big day arrived when we could finally view the new models? Hey John - didn't your dad's car get stolen out of the Kenneth service department?
Yes it did.

Name: Judy DeGrazia () on Friday, September 3, 1999 at 16:27:18
Maiden: va klempt again.. danny
Class: 64
Message: John Baker... I just saw the picture of the two cuties you put in feedback.. I know exactly who both those little stud muffins are. The tall one is good lookin' H.H.S jock-BOB RIERDAN, and the other guy is DANNY GRIMSLEY, my first love, my first date, my good friend til the end. (wish I could kiss him in the '52 ford again) How could I ever forget them Thanks I'm Va Klempt again. BTW Don't forget the VFW BREAKFAST on SEPT. 19 in 3 weeks. Meeting time for the ROWDYS: 10:00 am. (serving from 9 - 12) Breakfast is $4.00 per person and the "famous SOS" is being cooked and served by our own ROWDY GUY, Loren Heath. Mom B's and John B's going to be there too.
Judy DeGrazia THE ROWDYS.

YES, you are correct Maam. It's Bob and Danny, and yes, I'll be there on Breakfast day too. Thanks Judy

Name: Kathleen Griffin () on Friday, September 3, 1999 at 16:20:33
Maiden: Nix
Class: 74
Message: Bobby Jo, I had Mrs Carr. Also Mrs. Perry (the home economics teacher) at Dana. Other than that, I don't remember who else. In other words, I'm who you think I am. Why not email at and we can continue this conversation offline?

Name: CAROLE () on Friday, September 3, 1999 at 11:34:45
Class: 60
Hi Carole, Yes there was something like that going on. They would hammer each other on the heads with a paddle or a bat. Now THAT was funny!!!

Name: Don Di Tomasso () on Friday, September 3, 1999 at 11:31:36
Class: 1975
Message: I am amazed that so many people have such good memories of their High School years. I remember only bits and pieces. I must not have been too attentative during that time. If you remember who I am, contact me. It may help me bring up other memories. I thank those who have contacted me already. It has been nice. Visit my webpage at

Name: Andrea George Mendoza () on Friday, September 3, 1999 at 11:23:15
E-Mail: adg90
Maiden: George
Class: 90
Message: Hello to the class of 90 alumni. Checking to see if there was any info on our class reunion in 2000. If anyone knows anything please send me info. Looking forward to a response. Thanks.
Thanks Andrea, I won't let you miss your reunion. If there's something planned, it will be posted on the Reunions page.

Name: Kristi Pealo () on Friday, September 3, 1999 at 11:19:58
Maiden: Perkins
Class: 89
Message: Hello to all of you. I wanted to know if the class of 89 saw Wheel Of Fortune last night(thur).Our own Curtis Conway was the NFL football star, playing for an LA sick childrens charity. He really looked good. Wondering if our famous guy is going to the reunion next month? John, besides the Beach Boys what other famous people have come out of Hawthorne High? I love this web site! I just wish more from my class would write on feedback. Class of 89 where are you? One more thing my sister Stacy is getting married On Sat. Sept 4,1999. I wish her all the luck and love in the world. Her husband to be is one hell of a guy. Take care of her Sergej. We love you both.
Thanks Kristi

Hi Kristi, Hawthorne has lots of famous people that have walked the halls. Unfortunately, the only ones you hear about are the musicians and athletes. Publicity rules you know. Scott Laidlaw, HHS Cougar, and Dallas Cowboy; Mike Scott, a Cougar and Cy Young award winner with the Houston Astros; Ron Mix, a Cougar and NFL Hall of Famer with the Chargers are the three athletes that come to mind, but there were more. Chris Montez, the Beach Boys own Wilson brothers and Al Jardine, Ted Gioia, David Marks, among others, were the musicians. Hawthorne has other heroes too. John Fowler, who is a doctor working in Turkey, has got to be one of the unsung heroes from HHS. Also special Teachers and Faculty members. Two who come to mind for me are "The Coach" Hal Chauncey and Kye Courtney. These two men meant so much to literally thousands of Cougars through their years at HHS. So how do you define "Fame"? I'd like to think there're many, many more "Famous Cougars" other than the musicians and athletes. I know there are too.
Thanks Kristi.......

Name: Frank A. Romano () on Friday, September 3, 1999 at 11:02:15
Class: 1961
Message: To all, enjoy the labor day weekend. If you're driving, keep cool and relaxed. We want everyone to be safe and back at Cougartown afterwards. Here at Las Vegas, we're expecting about 250,000 visitors, and I hope they will let me get to my car on Saturday night. JB...the one fellow in the picture looks real familiar, but I can't place a name. The little fellow I have no clue! To stir the memories a little... PI shows. Peter Gunn, 77 Sunset Strip. At least we won't have to remember the names of horses.
How about "Hawaiian Eye". Frank, better make that 250,002 visitors, as Mom "B" and one of her offspring are bringing a bag of nickels, and are planning on breaking the bank at the Reserve.

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