40th Reunion Flashback!

“It takes a long time to grow an old friend.”  

This adage was proven true 100 times over when the Class of ’69 celebrated their 40th Reunion.  It was an amazing evening filled with good friends, memories, fun, music & food!  

People are talking about it.  Please share your favorite memory(ies) of the evening, offer comments, “wow moments” — whatever.  The important thing is for all of us to stay connected…and this is a start.  We would love to hear from you!  “Class of ’69 rocks!’ (J. Lee, 9/5/09)

Scroll to the  bottom of this page, click on comment.  Read previous submissions or write one of your own.


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27 Responses to “40th Reunion Flashback!”

  1. Doug Watt Says:

    OMG, This reunion exceeded my expectations. It was as much fun as you can have with your pants on. Everyone was so upbeat. Connecting with people I haven’t seen in 40 years. We have a great class.

  2. Heidi Sundberg-Nakayama Says:

    I agree, kudos to our great reunion committee, you did a wonderful job! I had a great time. My only complaint would be there’s just not enough time to connect with everyone you’d like to. I guess we can only hope everyone wants their contact info published so we can connect later.

  3. Gail Liragis Johnston Says:

    I don’t know about you but I just don’t feel like I’m done – can we do it again next weekend? What a great experience!

  4. Delynn Parry Heid Says:

    You guys did it. You pulled off an amazing reunion and everyone enjoyed themselves and had the best of times! It was wonderful to have such a great turnout and see so many of the kids who made up our growing years. Thank you for your time and efforts – I hope you feel such accomplishment. Hopefully, so many of us who have lost contact with each other can now stay closer. It really was wonderful.
    God Bless,
    Delynn Parry Heid

  5. Karen Malone Says:

    Mega thanks to our Reunion Committee!! This was truly a “blast from the past” (as my friend Eileen puts it) and all of your time and hard work in putting it together is truly appreciated.

    It was so much fun seeing everyone again, just sorry that I was unable to at least say “hi” to some of you. It was a wonderful evening!

    Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!

  6. Lisa Worthy Doose Says:

    All I can say is “WOW!”

    What a lot of effort it must have taken, but it was SO worth it. It was fabulous fun to see all of our old cronies, and reconnect with friends I never should have lost touch with in the first place. Life does get in the way, sometimes.

    I only hope we can do it again in the next 2 years – I think it’s a great idea, to celebrate a huge 60th birthday party.

    I’m sorry I missed seeing everyone I would have liked to. Please – everyone leave you contact info so we can at least email each other and take it from there!

    Thank you SO much to our wonderful reunion commitee. You guys outdid yourselves again!

  7. Mary Jo Thatcher Says:

    I loved it!

    My experience: walk up to someone, look at their name tag and high school photo, then look into the face of the adult and feel the delight when the classmate “appears” in the face of the adult!

    The band was great, playing all the old songs to take us back in time. Ronnie Fabre ROCKED IT.

    Magical that we all shared it – love the idea of a 60th birthday party!

    THANKS SO MUCH for putting it all together!

  8. enterprisetapeguru Says:

    Truly an amazing evening that brought back my youth. Seeing everyone possible in the few hours was fantastic. The committee did an outstanding job and out performed, I believe it is safe to say, all of our expectations. I unfortunately ran out of time to see everyone. I look forward to the next opportunity to see you again.

  9. Bill Calvitti Says:

    Thanks to everyone who put the time and effort into this. Only wish there had been more time (maybe a SENIOR all-nighter next time), I think I missed half the people I wanted to see. And a special thanks to Doug for leaving his pants on.

  10. Tim Broda Says:

    The ten, twenty and thirty year reunions each possessed their own unique tenor, tone, flair, flavor if you will. They were in their own right, great parties and fun reunions. I’m not really sure why but, this reunion transcended its predecessors. This reunion had soul!

    It clearly also had a greater air of nostalgia (likely due to our advanced years). Whatever the reason, I enjoyed the 40th more than the previous three and I’ll bet there are others that would agree. I was more cognizant and appreciative this time, of the unique circumstance of being in the company of a whole gang of kids I go as far back as kindergarten with. I’ve always been and will always be grateful to have grown up in Glendora.

    Thanks to Jim and the reunion committee for affording us all the opportunity to have had such a great evening.

    A 60th group birthday party sounds like a great idea. Maybe we’ll see more people who either couldn’t make it or didn’t think this party would be nearly as much fun as it was.

  11. Ed Leavell Says:

    Kudos to the reunion committee for all the hard work putting a great evening together. It was fun seeing some classmates that go back some as far as kindergarten. I look forward to many more happy moments with you all!

  12. Carolu Reich Every Says:

    What a memorable evening we had! I agree, there just wasn’t enough time to say “Hi!” to everyone. Many thanks to Jim and the reunion committee for their dedication in setting the stage for a wonderful experience. The band and singers were awesome!! We so enjoyed listening to the oldies but goodies! Thanks so much for your efforts in keeping us all updated and connected! Class of ’69 rocks!!

  13. Nancy Graham Walper Says:


    What fun we had. I agree with Bill Calvitti that we need a Senior All Nighter!! Maybe for the 60th BDAY we can have it at a hotel where we can hang out late afterwards and visit around a pool/bar area during the day.

    I also feel the need to apologize for not getting to say hello to everyone. I see the pics and think..”How did I miss saying hello to______?”

    Everyone looked like themselves from High School..only better! The youthful package we had is now filled with the knowledge and self confidence we have achieved throughout the last 40 years. It is a good look and suits you all well.

    Good Job Class of 69—You made me PROUD!


  14. ronnie fabre Says:

    wooooooow! whata great time i had! i loved seeing everyone, and seeing those i didn’t know well. you organizers were really great. and made everyone feel so good. singing with the great band was sooooo beyond my
    expectations! it was the best moment i’ve had since opening for tony bennett at ceasears palace. the memories came flooding back, of mrs thompson… jim, gail gail gail, jim, mike(so many mikes!), i felt like a peanut
    in a room of giants. so many people said not to expect much, but i did, and viola! it was just so much fun. i loved it from the bottom of my judy garland feet to kansas,we rocked!!!

  15. Steve Morris Says:

    Here’s to Jim and the reunion committee. It was a memorable event that you organized for our class. Thank you so much for all the work and planning that went into this. As many have expressed, I too did not have enough time to see everyone. The memories and experiences in high school are part of the fabric of who I am today. It was not by chance that our paths crossed during those formative years of grade school, junior high, and high school. God was behind the scenes orchestrating the people and events that would shape my life. I was not aware of that when growing up. I just trusted my parents and teachers to lead me in the right direction in those early years. I am very thankful for both. But I also learned much from my peers at school. And now from the perspective of nearly 60 years, being able to see children grow and grand children spreading their wings, once again I am reminded of the importance of those early relationships with parents, teachers, and peers. For me, this reunion was an important event. It is a reminder of the priceless friendships I once had in my youth. It is a reminder that life is a gift and our time here will end one day. It is a reminder that earthly reunions will end. No one will be left from our class in the not too distant future. It was a reality check to see the names and pictures of those, our classmates, who have already left this world. So what is my hope? I am now looking forward to the eternal reunion that is promised in the bible by Jesus Christ himself (John 14:1-3). I hope you are too. God bless you all. And by God’s grace I hope to see you again in 2 years at our 60th birthday.
    Your fellow classmate and friend always,
    Steve Morris

  16. Susan A. Alexandrowicz Says:

    I realized when I saw everyone again, that I had shared my life with a very nice community of people. The experiences from the late 50′s to 1969, were shared by many of us together. Many of us had the same memories and had witnessed the same moments. For some reason, those realizations made me feel content and whole. It was like getting back to my own school of fish.
    I especially loved seeing my old neighborhood friends from back when I was four years old! And I agree, let’s not wait so long to be together. There just wasn’t enough time!
    Thank you to all who donated their valuable time to make this happen.
    Susan Alexa Alexandrowicz

  17. galerobison Says:

    Oh My, What a great time..
    As part of the reunion team it was more than expected. Planning was as fun as the event itself. Very exciting that so many were ‘found’ and attended. 187 attendees far surpassed our expectation, the great majority being classmates.
    Thousands of emails and phone calls were about to pay off in the event that far exceeded any expectations.
    Several planning meetings were held in a very short span of time and the hopes that the reunion would be as fun as the meetings were constantly in the back of our minds.
    An inpromptu invite to those coming from long distances was a great way to start in on the ‘recognition phase’ and about 50 showed up for an early start.
    The afternoon of the reunion several of us went to the country club to tend to last minute details, looking at the number of name badges on the table we wondered just how many would actually show up, if we would remember them and they would remember us.
    Having been to each of the last 3 reunions the anticipation was mounting in all of us.
    The doors opened and members of the GHS Class of 1969 poured in. With each ‘entrance’ the excitement grew. In past reunions there seemed to be an air of who accomplished what, how it was accomplished, who was wearing what and who they were with. This reunion shattered all of that. It was like we had gone full circle and back to being with the kids we grew up with, total acceptance of ‘who’ they were, not ‘what’ they were.
    Memories started pouring out from everyone. I was reminded of things from the first day of kindergarten, that I sat and cried and cried, I did not want to be there. (Thank you Linda Masters for getting me through that), to some of the crazy things we did during grade school and high school, both during school and after school. We were lucky that growing up in Glendora was in “the plan”.
    There was not enough time that evening to catch on all the years in between, 40 years….wow….40 years.
    As far as things people had done there was every occupation chosen and represented, exceeded by whoever had chosen to do what they had done. The conversations were not self-serving, but rather “Where have you been?’ and “I am so glad to see you”.
    Growing up together had indeed turned out to be a big part of our lives, nobody can take that away from us. Some appearances had changed but when the smiles and laughter appeared everyone was genuinely happy to see everyone else. The pictures on the website show that.
    No amount of ‘planning’ could have planned that much fun.
    It was a great time and as others have said, the evening was to short. Yes, we do need to do it again…sooner than 10 years. So the “We Are 60″ birthday party is on which I am sure will be followed by the “Eligible for MediCare” party.
    I, for one, will be at the GHS reunion picnic at the Glendora Park on October 10, 2009.
    Hope to see some of you there……
    Gale Robison

  18. Pat Minter Says:

    Looks like I missed a good reunion/party. You all look great! For those of you I literally grew up with, you haven’t changed enough that I couldn’t still recognize you. Karen Peterson, you look just like you did when we were 9 years old!

    Does anyone on the committee have the names of those honored ‘in memory’? I would like to know who they all are, I only actually recognized a couple.

  19. Gregory Coon Says:

    I had the best time and I will use Doug Watt’s quote “the best time with your pants on”. I want to thank everyone that put so much effort into finding every one for this amazing reunion. If only it could have lasted a few more days! So many people I didn’t get to talk with. Seeing people from 40 years ago OMG what memories from growing up in Glendora. I also laugh every time I think of calling Marlene (Martin) Wheldon and telling her she HAS to be there, there was a rumor that she needed to correct, she got a big kick about that…..she even made it with her new knee! I’ve already put up pictures all around my desk at work… more memories I will never forget, well I hope NOT LOL.
    Thanks to every one!
    69 rocks!
    Greg Coon

  20. Jim Lee Says:

    “BEST IN CLASS” – - – GHS 1969! ! ! ! !

    Thanks to ALL of our Classmates for making our 40th Reunion the best ever and proving beyond any doubt that the Class of ’69 still rocks (Ronnie Fabre and Jeff Carver take a bow – - – you were amazing!).

    Like everyone else, I wish I could have spent more time with EVERYONE. However, just watching you REALLY ENJOY one another, after all these years, is something I will always remember.

    I also want to thank our 40th Reunion Team. They are the best!
    When we first got together, just a little over four months ago, we made a committment to find as many of our Classmates as possible, let them know about the Reunion, motivate them to attend AND put together a Reunion they would never forget. The Reunion Team was not only relentless and passionate in fullfilling this committment, but we had A LOT of FUN doing it! You probably could tell. :)

    ALL of the Reunion Team (listed below) did a great job and each made significant contributions, but a little special recognition deserves to go to Gale (Robison) Miller who tracked done many of our Classmates (Gale, the FBI has nothing on you girl) and Gail (Liragis) Johnston who handled all of our corresondence (and more). I don’t think Gail would have “volunteered” to do this if she really knew what she was getting into, but she never complained.


    Ray Cloutman (My best friend since the fifth grade. I love you buddy).

    Gale (Robison) Miller

    Gale (Richardson) Gousha (aka “Prom Date” :) )

    Doug Watt

    Carol (Schwartz) Bradshaw. The In Memoriam for our Classmates and the Tribute to our Armed Forces was beautiful and poignant.

    Eileen (Berryhill) Pandeles (aka “speedy”) :)

    Linda Jenkins

    Sandi (Province) Boland

    Hanneke (Schram) Jacobs. Your husband, Peter, your daughter and the rest of the band rocked the house. And to think, we almost decided to have a DJ. :) It just wouldn’t have been the same.

    Gail (Liragis) Johnston

    Jim Lee

    Steve Tribble (Reunion Team Emeritus)

    A great Team, but also great friends.

    When you think about it, eventhough it was our 40th Reunion, most of us have actually known each other for OVER FIFTY YEARS! (Go on, check the math, I got it right). Which means we grew up together. We learned to laugh and to cry together. Experienced kindness, cruelty, friendship (we invented BFF’s), as well as first love and heartbreak. WE LEARNED ABOUT LIFE TOGETHER.

    Bobbie Lambert recently said it best, “We were very lucky kids to grow up WHERE we did, WHEN we did and with WHO we did.”

    They say there is always a first time, and sadly, a last time for most things we experience in life. We simply can’t let the our 40th Reunion be our last time together. Please keep in touch. Let us know if you find any of our “lost” classmates and if you learn of any who are no longer with us.

    Submit your mini-yearbook (Bellendaine) info. to gailjohnston@sbcglobal.net. Check out the GHS all class Reunion on October 10th at Finkbinder Park. There will be a Class of ’69 “Group 60th Birthday Party in the summer of 2011 and we WILL sing the Alama Mater(promise) AND we will start planning now for our next Reunion – - -do I hear 50th? Gales and Gail are you listening? :)

    GHS Class of “69. Thank you for many of my oldest and fondest memories. You will always be very special people in my life.

    I love you guys!

    Jim Lee

  21. Cindy Lee Langhaim Says:

    Well I am sorry to have missed such a great reunion! I agree with my old friend and fellow Girl Scout, Bobbie Lambert that we were indeed lucky kids to grow up where and when and with who we did!! You guys did a terrific job putting together a great party and thanks for the website for viewing pictures! A 60th Birthday Bash sounds like so much fun and I hope to make the next Class of 69 Reunion!

    Great Memories!
    Cindy Lee Langhaim

  22. Linda Jenkins Says:

    Being part of the committee was so much fun! I am so glad I reconnected with so many of you Special People!
    Gale Robison is the funniest lady I have ever known! What a hoot it has been planning with her, not only did we take our Senior Pictures together we got ready for our 40th together too, 41 years later…..giggled the whole time!
    Absolutely Great to see Nick, Jan, Dr. John, Dennis, Tim, Bobbie, Cleve, Jay, Ronnie, and so many others!
    So many look so much the same and even better, others I couldn’t even recognize. Funny how life changes us in so many ways.
    Knowing that we have lost so many of our classmates saddens me as I am sure it does everyone who is reading this………they were a part of our lives, a good part………..I am proud that they are remembered!
    I am looking forward to October 10th for the “All Class” reunion and planning for our 60th birthday party!
    You, Class of 69′………… Rock!

  23. Carol Gordon Coppel Says:

    How great it was to see so many life long friends again. As many have said, to bad we didn’t have more time together. After seeing the wonderful pictures I realized how many people I didn’t get to talk to or even knew that they were there. So many memories, some like it was yesterday and others, I had no clue.
    The Reunion Team did a great job of finding so many of us, and making a perfect evening happen for all of us to enjoy. Looking forward to our “We are 60″ B-Day party.
    Class of “69″ does Rock. Lets keep in touch.

  24. Tony Brown Says:

    I don’t know If I said it already but …Cool site, love the info. I do a lot of research online on a daily basis and for the most part, people lack substance but, I just wanted to make a quick comment to say I’m glad I found your blog. Thanks, :)

    A definite great read..Tony Brown
    (From Gail L.: This guy didn’t even attend GHS and loves the comments/site! Thanks, Tony!!)

  25. Bonnie Kimball Coburn Says:

    Wow, I’m slow,— but what a great time I had in Glendora! It was so nice to talk to so many old friends and classmates. Hats off to “The
    Committee” for planning such a fun event. I’m looking at pictures and realizing I missed so many people I should have talked to! Looks like another trip to California is in my future, hopefully for a 60th (Can that be right???) B-Day party! Glendora Class of ’69 – The best people year & school ever!!!

  26. Karen (Bergeson) Gunn Says:

    Sorry to be so slow to comment but I just had to say that this was the finest reunion I’ve ever attended. As Gail Miller said, it was so comforting to see everyone breaking away from being impressed with our accomplishments and moving to a genuine caring of the people we’ve become (and realizing just how blessed we are to be surrounded by real friends).

    Looking back from what our world looks like today makes me realize how easy it was to be a kid during our school years. I shudder when I think of the obstacles the youth today will have to face. I thank God that we were able to experience an almost “Mayberry RFD” community. I don’t know about the rest of you, but I still get goosebumps when I hear our drum cadence and anything by bagpipe. How many can still do the Highland Fling?????

    As for the hope in our future, Steve Morris – you said it best. It is my prayer that all will realize that there is life after this one and it won’t be the same without all of your smiling faces there as well. God bless you all.

    PS Hanneke – your husband’s band was beyond fabulous and I think your daughter could very well be the next American Idol if she desires. Incredible confidence and poise – not to mention the talent. That one is destined for stardom!

  27. Sonja Ahlf Conn Says:

    Thanks to the entire REUNION COMMITTEE- A first class incredible event!! It was great to see everyone again. I had not been back in Glendora since my parents moved in 1978. Some things never change!

    Once, again, great job Class of 1969 Committee! Keep in touch!


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