Sunrise: First thing tomorrow morning. To be repeated daily until further notice.

2015 All-Bearcat Picnic:
The date is set for the seventh annual picnic. Join us on Saturday, March 21, 2015 at the PERA Club in Tempe. The picnic is meant for all RHS classes, their families, and the faculty and staff. Bring your own food, drink, and name tags, but no booze!

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Carol Dierking Burlinson Tells Her Story

I moved from California to Arizona in fifth grade, when my divorced mother died and my dad was given custody. When I transferred from Hayden to Ray in 1965, sophomore year, I missed the first day of school. The next morning, first thing, I blew a pop quiz in Mr. Taft's class. I was mortified. I was a Smart Kid, I didn't flunk tests. Taft told me, "you'll be okay." I was inwardly focused, reserved, quiet, hard to get to know, but he encouraged me. I liked him a lot.

After high school I earned a BA in anthropology and a Master of Library Science from the University of Arizona, married in '74, and in '75 moved to College Station, Texas, for my husband's job at A&M. Two years later we moved to Austin and we've been here ever since. I worked 14 years at university libraries and the Texas State Library; some of these jobs I liked, but others? They were just for the money. Contrary to image, most librarians are people oriented, but me - I was an introvert in a social profession. Then in 1989 I got my dream job in the research library of Radian International, an environmental engineering firm. That was my "bliss" work experience - challenging, absorbing, and most important, I believed in what I was doing. When it ended in a buyout in '99, I began working part time for the school system, subbing in school libraries. It's worthwhile also, but I'm winding it down now.

We never wanted kids. Then, in our thirties, we decided we'd go for it after all. That's how, in 1985, we came to adopt a four-month-old son from Korea, Jake. Do I even need to say he's been the light of our lives? He's 24 now, currently at Ft. Rucker, Alabama, training to be a medevac pilot. When he finishes that, he'll be joining the Texas Department of Public Safety and flying for the Texas National Guard. He says he wants a family of his own someday, but he's too busy right now. So I hope grandkids are in the future. That's what you get for putting off parenthood :)

Over the years my hobbies have been reading (of course!), ballet, voice, and guitar. I once took acting and auditioned for a bit part as a killer in a low budget film noir, but that was the end of my movie career. Nowadays, I've given up ballet and guitar due to injuries, but as an amateur mystery writer, I spend a lot of time thinking up ways to murder people.

I've been a lifelong learner and in addition to writing I read mysteries, fantasy, humor, and nonfiction such as history, religion, politics, and the natural sciences. I do some yoga, a little gardening, birdwatching, collect perfume, and enjoy going out with friends. Unlike me, my husband of 35 years has not slowed down much. His job with the state health department is as demanding as ever, but if we're lucky, we get away for the occasional day or weekend trip. Austin is a unique city for Texas, and while the "Keep Austin Weird" bumper stickers are probably wishful thinking, it's still weird enough for me. I love this town.

Dumbest thing I ever did? Not selling when the Dow was at 14,000. Smartest thing? Hooking up with my two fellas - marrying John and adopting Jake.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Russ Cooper Tells His Story

Except for a stint in the army, my dad was a lifelong Kennecott guy. He and Mom were both only children who grew up in Hurley, New Mexico, where both of their dads also worked for Kennecott. My brother (Paul '72) and I were both born in Salt Lake City (more Kennecott) a few years before we all moved to Hayden. When the house we lived in there found itself in the way of the long conveyor belt that now runs between the crusher and the mill, we moved to Kearny to avoid being bulldozed off the hill. That was in either late 1958 or early 1959.

Kearny (a planned community!) was brand new then, with streets of mud, no fences separating the lots, and a hopeful little mulberry tree in each front yard for landscaping. A bunch of us went to third grade in a portable building that also served as a Baptist church. A real school, paved streets, chain link fences, and many acres of bermuda grass all followed soon enough.

One of my more interesting high school memories is from the very first week or two of my freshman year. That was the first year that the kids from Dudleyville and the other communities south of Hayden were bussed over to Kearny to go to school. So suddenly, instead of everybody already knowing everybody on day one because we had all grown up together, there was this odd "us" (the Kearny kids) and "them" (the Hayden kids) thing going on that none of us had ever experienced before. Obviously, "they" were going through exactly the same thing, except that they must certainly have had "us" and "them" totally backwards!

This whole thing was especially strange for me because I had gone through first and second grade in Hayden with some of some of "them." So a handful of these foreign invaders were actually my friends from a few years earlier. Audrey Burnam, Clarine Brandt, and Art Young come to mind. Long after any notion of "us" and "them" had been forgotten completely, Art and I wound up in the same chemistry class at the university in Tucson. I also remember running into Audrey at some sort of farewell shindig when we were all about to graduate. That was kind of cool.

I learned enough vocabulary at U of A to get an engineering job with Honeywell in Phoenix. Then I learned enough engineering at Honeywell to eventually set myself up as a freelance nerd for hire. That kept me about 110% busy writing embedded microcontroller firmware and PC programs right up until 9/11. Things kind of slacked off starting on 9/12 (literally), and I've been exploring the distinctions between semi-retired, retired, and just plain unemployed ever since. I like "semi-retired" the best. Fortunately, that's the way it's been going for the past few years.

In mid 1978 I bought a brand new Ford Mustang II. It was bright orange with a white top, black interior carpet, and black, orange, and yellow plaid upholstery on the seats. Whoa! Talk about your understated style and grace. That car was it. Well, far too soon after I got this fine vehicle, the girlfriend got somewhat more friendly and we wound up getting married later that year. That very strongly reinforced my great theory that you gotta have great wheels if you want to get the girl. Mysteriously, though, she continued to hang around even after we got rid of that car. Imagine that. I guess either my great theory was completely wrong, or else the Mustang wasn't so hot after all and what she really liked was my boat.

Carol was a music teacher when we met. Then she got a computer science degree and worked for Intel for a while. Then she got enough credentials to be a pastor for a while. Now (2009) she's just finished up a program to learn ASL interpreting. I don't know what she wants to be when she grows up.

Progeny: None. Hobbies: Flying (no longer) and woodworking (more and more). Ridiculous websites: http://www.ibab.org. Residence: Phoenix.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Bearcats Tell Their Stories

So, what's your story? Everybody has one. And believe it or not, other folks are every bit as interested in yours as you are in theirs. So, why not take a few minutes and tell everyone what you've been up to, like these folks have done already:
Yeah, I know, it's tough. You're looking at a blank piece of paper and saying to yourself, "Where do I start?" Well, here are a few questions just to get you going. Use any or all or none of them. And feel free to add other stuff you think of that's not here.
  • Where did your parents come from?
  • How did they (and you) wind up in Kearny?
  • What is your first memory of Ray High?
  • What did you do after high school?
  • What was your best job?
  • What was the smartest thing you ever did?
  • What was the dumbest thing you ever did?
  • Where do you live now?
  • What are you doing now?
  • How 'bout those good looking kids and grandkids of yours?
Got your story all written up? Good--send it! Got pictures of yourself or your family or your prize-winning '78 Bonneville restoration? Send 'em! Got a link to a website or a blog of your own? Include that, too! Where to? rrrmac@gmail.com. Thanks.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Bearcats Yak It Up

Want to leave a note for your fellow Bearcats? This is the place! Leave a comment here to ask a question, tell everyone how life's been treating you, or maybe just say, "Hi!"

General chit-chat is fine, but you probably don't want to include any contact information in your comments, lest the spammers rain their torment upon you for the rest of your days. For that (contact info, not torment), shoot an email to Tessie Ozuna '69 at tsozuna@cox.net. She'll add you to her growing list of alumni, and/or help you find someone you're looking for.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Steve Kuykendall Tells Another Moving VW Story

Roy Woods drove a Volkwagen beetle (If my memory serves me it was Roy's - although it seems that Mrs. Kelso also drove a VW, so not sure.) and always parked it right in front of the office. The locker room, which was covered by a roof but open on the sides, had a raised concrete section in the center with no lockers. One morning a bunch of us football players (we were the state champs that year by the way - 1966) had a great idea. We went out and picked up the VW and carried it through the wide doorway into the locker room and high centered it on the concrete platform. We then went back to class. I was in Mr. Crowell's trig class and could see the locker room through the windows. Pretty soon one of the girls walked by and stopped with her mouth open, and then ran to the office to notify Mr. Woods. Soon they were all out of the office and staring at the car, scratching their heads.

A few minutes later Mrs. Endsley announced over the intercom that the football team needed to come to the office. Some witness had squealed. We headed to the office and Mr. Woods walked us out to the car and asked us to move it back out to the parking lot. He took it with reasonable humor and didn't place anyone on detention. We carried the car back to its original location and nothing more was said.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Decades-Old Mystery Remains Unsolved

One fine day in the late '60s, Ray High's first-hour band class arrived ready to toot their horns, only to find themselves unsupervised because the band director, Mr. Davidson, was missing in action. They all tried to keep occupied by warming up their instruments, ending their endless conversations, or trying to catch a few extra zzzzz’s ... all while, in the background, Lance Giroux’s fingers were burning up a storm as he warmed up to Rimsky Korsakov’s Flight of the Bumblebee.

Apparently, a band (cough, cough ... get it? b-a-n-d?) of our peers had gone, under cover of darkness, to Mr. Davidson’s house and managed to corner his little bug--his Volkswagen, that is--in the carport. One can only imagine Mr. Davidson’s expression when he exited his home to find that he couldn't drive to school because his VW had somehow levitated and lighted itself such that there was no way he could drive it out. Heh, heh.

The mystery surrounding this incident remains to this day. However, the statute of limitations on such pranks has surely expired, and we now call upon the masterminds who conceived and executed this brilliant plan to step forward, admit responsibility, and claim the glory that is rightfully theirs.

Whose idea was this? When did it happen? Where did the planning occur (e.g., at the park by the swimming pool, Bob’s Drive-in, or by the swinging bridge)? “Sing it sister … or brother!!” Who do we thank for starting what could have been a rather mundane day with some sweet excitement?

If you were involved, you owe it to your comrades to click on the "comments" link below and fess up. If you weren't involved, but you know who was, you can click on the "comments" link below and rat on your friends. If you have no clue, click on the "comments" link anyway to see what the others are saying.

The Blogmeister Explains Comments

An imaginary visitor asks:
How do I leave a comment?

The blogmeister replies:
Glad you asked! One of the great features of this blog is that you and other visitors (both real and imaginary) can chime in with your own thoughts and opinions. After each post, you'll see some posting details (e.g., Posted by RMAC AT 11:18 AM 2 Comments). To read the comments that others have left, just click on the word "comments", and they will magically appear.

Want to leave a comment of your own? You can do that, too! Here's how:
  • As before, click on "comments".
  • Scroll down beyond any existing comments until you see the box labeled "Post a Comment."
  • Click inside the box, then type your comment.
  • Below the box, click the arrow on the box labeled "Comment as:"
If you want to sign the comment with your name, click on the "Name/URL" selection, type your name where it says "Name", then click "Continue". Or, if you're really shy or want to create some mystery around your comment, just click on "Anonymous."
  • Click on the "Post Comment" button to publish your comment on the blog. That's it!
We really hope that you will participate by leaving comments. However you might as well know that we monitor each and every one, and will cheerfully and with great enthusiasm delete all comments that are objectionable in any way. So just be nice, and please don't try to spam the blog. Okay? Okay.

Still have a question? Shoot an email to rrrmac@gmail.com and we'll try to sort it out.

The Ruperts from Kingman Say, "Hi."

James '67 and Nola '65 Rupert send their greetings, along with a link to their own blog. It's worth a visit just to see exactly how your back yard should look.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Ray High Graduates Thirty-Six in 2009

Here are some pictures from the 2009 Ray High graduation ceremony, sent by Jack and Kitty Van Blitterswijk. They report a fine looking group of 36 graduates.

Margaret Golden Ford '79, son Sam '09, and hubby John.

The Ray High graduating class of 2009.

Cliff Golden '69.

Annette Van Blitterswijk and Margaret Golden Ford '79.

Mrs. Betty Jenkin and son Mark '79, with John Ford looming in the background.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Steve Kuykendall Says, "Hi."

Steve Kuykendall '66 sends his greetings and a picture. Here's what Steve has to say:
I graduated from Ray in 1966. My father (same name) taught at Ray and then at Kearny (Jr High) from 1955 through 1967. My brother Danny and sister Janet (known in the family as Twink) moved to Tucson before they graduated but had many friends in their age group. Danny was in the class of '69 and Janet in '71 or '72.

The Kuykendall kids at San Carlos, Mexico, Christmas 2008: Danny '69, Janet, Steve '66.

Jim Porcher Says, "Hi."

Jim Porcher '69 sends his greetings, along with this picture of himself and a horse named Boomer. That's just so much less confusing than a horse with no name.

Jim has a website, too, where you'll find full contact information in case you want him to make up a cool name for your horse. Or, if you prefer, Jim can even set you up with a new horse that already has a name. That might be better.

Some Old Timers Had Cameras

Here are a few old pictures from Gilbert Alvidrez '69 of Ray and Sonora back in the day:

The Sonora, Arizona baseball team, circa 1915.

The school at Sonora, Arizona. Date unknown.

Recess at the school in Sonora, Arizona. Date unknown.

Teapot mountain, from somewhere downstream along Mineral Creek. Date unknown (although the mountain still looks about the same).

And one in living color (woo, woo!) from Roy Turman '68:

Downtown Ray, Arizona. The first car is either a 1949 or 1950 Mercury Sport Sedan, so this picture was probably taken sometime in the early '50s.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Some Bearcats Have a Picnic

Thanks mostly to the diligent and skillful organization of Tess Ozuna '69, a bunch o' Bearcats (1961 - 1976) gathered in Phoenix for a reunion picnic on March 14, 2009. About 115 people showed up, and from all indications (to borrow a phrase from small town newspapers everywhere), a good time was had by all!

The prize for the best group photograph goes to George Dewey '69, who sent this fine shot of the class of '69. But wait. It seems that George is in the picture. Figure that out. Anyway, the picture:

Front row: Jim Lemon, Susan Duggins Acton, Joanne Hatfield, Lorrie Winkle LeFevers, Doug Endsley, Bill Castro, Clarine Brandt Haslag (standing). Second row: Jack Garrity, Linda O'Guin Mitchell, Roxana Cluff Garrity, Tess Ozuna, Sue Ann Jenkin Fountain, George Dewey, Eliza Guzman Brunner, Terry Dear. Third row: Larry Avants, Keith Otts, Phil Bidegain, Craig Duffy, Leslie Taft Gilchrist. Back row: Charlotte Giroux Johnson, Tony Meza.

Hold on. There are more pictures. Lots and lots more pictures. And hey, if you see a name that's wrong or you know somebody who's identified as "???" in one of the captions, please help us out by leaving a comment with the correction. We don't want to be contributing to anyone's identity crisis here.

Doug Williams '62 and Louella Ozuna '63 can't help but say, "This is a great gathering!"

Avelardo Munoz '63 catching up with Mrs. Ellen Endsley and Mary Lou Knauff Long '66. While Charlotte Giroux Johnson '69 and Doug Endsley '69 contemplate the years past.

Front: Mrs. Ellen Endsley, Mary Lou Knauff Long '66. Back: Mrs. Caroline Giroux, Patty Coffey Sirls '66, Doug Williams '62. ~ That looks like some serious talking in the back.

Patty Coffey Sirls '66 and Louella Ozuna '63 confidently smiling because they know that Jill Barras has their backs as she diverts the attention of the headless man. Shhhh!

Mrs. Ellen Endsley and her boy Doug. ~ Can you believe that Mrs. Endsley actually remembered us all!? Well, mostly those who made regular visits to the school office ... all official school business, of course!

Hatfield girls: Joanne '69 and Linda Garcia '68 ... SISTER POWER!

Jenkin girls: Sue Ann '69 and her mom, Betty. ~ Gotta hug her for making the trip up from Kearny to visit with us! We love you, Mrs. Jenkin!

Winkle girls: Gretchen Boggs '77, Lorrie LeFevers '69, Debbie Castro '71? ~ Hey! Where's that Melissa girl '70 ... maybe next year she'll be able to make the trip up from Tucson?

Front: Craig Duffy '69, George Dewey '69, Jack Garrity '69. Back: Mandy McGee '68.

Mrs. Betty Jenkin, Patty Coffey Sirls '66, Mike Coffey '64.

Tony Bueno '68, Robin Coffey '69. ~ Hey, what is it about the hands in the pockets? ... is Jack Garrity behind this trend?!

Chris Dear Hanson '70, Jack Garrity '69, Phil Bidegain '69. ~ See? ... hands in pockets.

Joanne Hatfield '69, Doddi Van Blitterswiijk Garner '68, Linda Hatfield '68, Linda O'Guin Mitchell '69. ~ Okay ... whatcha looking at ... pictures ... do tell!?

Roxana Cluff Garrity '69, Sue Ann Jenkin Fountain '69. ~ We remember those smiles!

Leslie Taft Gilchrist '69 pondering, "Why am I here ... aren't I retired?" Tess Ozuna '69 pretending to have a clue as she explains the complicated but simple labeling system she threw together at 5:00 a.m. and John Evancevich smiling in relief, "I had nothing to do with this system!"

Charlotte Giroux Johnson '69, Mrs. Caroline Giroux, Mary Roensch '69 ~ You are so awesome, Mrs. Giroux, for spending the day with us! She's a keeper.

The Coffey Sibs plus one: Mike Coffey '64, Mary Lou Knauff Long '66, Patty Coffey Sirls '66, Robin Coffey '69.

Roxana Cluff Garrity '69, Clarine Brandt Haslag '69. ~ There go those smiles again.

Manuel Lopez '68 and his wife, Levina.

Jack Garrity '69, Susan Duggins Acton '69. ~ Clever. The camera man taking a picture of the camera woman. Jack, what say you?

Roxana Cluff Garrity '69, Leslie Taft Gilchrist '69, Manuel Lopez '68. ~ Quick, Leslie, look away! Manuel's about to bedazzle you.

Tessie Ozuna '69, Sue Ann Jenkin Fountain '69.

Lorrie Winkle LeFevers '69, Linda O'Guin Mitchell '69, Roxana Cluff Garrity '69.

Charlotte Giroux Johnson '69, Mrs. Caroline Giroux, and Mrs. Ellen Endsley getting a lesson from Jim Lemon '69 on the intricacies of "da cap." Doug Williams '62 and Mike Coffey '64 having a sit down chat ... Robin Coffey '69 are you daydreaming about the good old days? Way in the back: ???, ???, Keith Otts '69 and Nancy Otts.

???, Ramona Meza, Linda Hatfield '68 ~ Is this one of those scary RHS tales, Linda? Oh, oh, remember that time at the cemetry?!

Terry Dear '69, Craig Duffy '69, Larry Avants '69, and Phil Bidegain '69 all shooting the RHS bull ... just like it was in those days of yore!

Gerri Garcia Putman '66 and Roy Putman taking in the fun. "Bet ya' that they can't get that grill going."

Arranged by height order: Charlotte Giroux Johnson '69, Leslie Taft Gilchrist '69, Mary Roensch '69, Joanne Hatfield '69, Sue Ann Jenkin Fountain '69, and Jeanne Roensch Stritzinger '72 (lilac shirt).

Tony Meza '69 with Terry Dear '69 and Eliza Guzman Brunner '69 in synchronized arm positions. Cool!

Jack Garrity '69 and Pete Acton in eye-to-eye conversation ... dah hands?!

Mrs. Caroline Giroux and Larry Avants '69.

Tess Ozuna '69 and Sue Ann Jenkin Fountain '69 ... "Sue Ann, keep looking for something to throw at this guy. I'll blind him with my shiny teeth, but any closer and "I" will bite him!? Dang the papparazzo!"

The Meza Family: Jessica*, Tony '69, TJ, Ramona. ~ *Or is this Amanda, sorry.

Craig Duffy '69, Terry Dear '69, Eliza's guest, Eliza Guzman Brunner'69, Rena Avants.

Doug Williams '62, Robin Coffey '69, Patty Coffey Sirls '66, Mike Coffey '64, Gary Barras '70. ~ Gary, are you getting all technical?

The Herricks. Lots and lots of them! Cal's behind the picture taking. Hope you all had fun cuz we loved that you all could make it!!

Jack Garrity '69, Phil Bidegain '69, Corrine Bidegain, and Levina Lopez. ~ Okay, I will say it, "Way cool hat!"

Avelardo Munoz '63, John Evancevich, Terry LeFevers ... what are you up to?!

Hey! what's she got in her pocket?! Debbie Winkle Castro '72 and these two smiley girls?

Jack Garrity '69, Robin Coffey '69. Okay, n-o-w do you believe me about those hands? Must be a guy thing.

David L. Williams '68 and his wife, Terry.

Mary Ann Corral Bueno '68, Linda O'Guin Mitchell '69, Charlotte Giroux Johnson '69 ~ this has to be about grandkids.

Jan Herrick and daughter-in-law?

Rena Avants and DeAnn Hepler Smith '69.

Jack Garrity '69, Doug Endsley '69 ~ Ahhh! Finally, showing hands.

Craig Duffy '69, Phil Bidegain '69, Corrine Bidegain.

Doddi Van Blitterswijk Garner '68, Rena Avants, Mrs. Charlotte Giroux, Larry Avants '69 ~ Oh, oh. Avants are you trying to thumb a ride from these gals?!

Brenda Steveson Rupert '69, Tom Rupert '68.

Mandy McGee '68, Sue Ann Jenkin Fountain '69, Leslie Taft Gilchrist '69 ~ How sweet ... a Kodak moment. "Just a moment ... I know the little whatca-ma-jigger button is somewhere. Sue Ann can you see where it went?" (Note Leslie's quick action to strike a pose ... she still has it after all these years!)

Keith Otts '69 and his wife, Nancy. ... hope you two had better luck starting the fire.

SMILE! You're on RHS candid camera: Mrs. Aletha Dewey (George's mom), Karen Dewey (sister), George Dewey '69. Our proms would have been a disaster without the Dewey Floral and Nursery? (cough! Really, the guys would have been up a literal Gila River without the corsages ... you know know how women never forget those little details!!) Thanks for blessing us with your presence!

???, ??? ~ Are these cool looking people part of the Acton family?

Class of '66: Mary Lou Knauff Long, Robert Henderson, Patty Coffey Sirls, Calvin Herrick, Tom Rupert (imposter from the class of '68), Gerri Garcia Putman, Diane Taft LaVera.

???. Hey, is that Billy Castro with the red hat? It is. He tried to trade with Phil, but no deal.