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The Classmates Project

NOTE: I grew up in a suburb of Los Angeles called Rosemead, a little place with a surprisingly stable population. There are lots of kids I went to school with for 13 years, as did my two brothers before me and my sister after me. This project is dedicated to them.

On a visit to Rosemead in July 2009, I scanned a series of nine photos, representing my classes at Encinita School (K-6) and Muscatel Intermediate (7-8). These do not represent everyone in that grade, only those in my class (in elementary) or homeroom (at Muscatel).

We completely covered the 1960s, starting Kindergarten in 1960 and graduating from Muscatel in 1969!

If you were in my grade-level, I'd like to ask your help on three tasks:

1. Help me fill in names
Even if you weren't in my class that year, you would probably know the names of classmates. Also, please check my memory on the ones I've already filled in (spelling counts, too). You can add names in the comments (by number), and occasionally I'll move them up to the main post for that picture. Please use question marks if you’re not sure, like this:
9F John (?) Smith=not sure of spelling of first name
9F John Smith (?) =not sure of spelling of last name
9F (?) John Smith=not sure of spelling of entire name
9F John (sp?) Smith=not sure of spelling of first name
9F John Smith (sp?) =not sure of spelling of last name
9F (sp?) John Smith=not sure of spelling of entire name
2. Send more class pictures
If you have pictures from the same year/grade but a different teacher/homeroom, I'll be glad to post them so we can do something similar with those, as we were all classmates. Write to me (use the "Contact" link above) and I'll tell you the ideal specs for the scans (but I'll take anything I can get).

3. Locate other classmates
If you know some of the people in these pictures, send them my way! Ask them to look at the pictures and contribute to Task 1 or Task 2 above.

For you:
I can send you the same scans as those here (roughly 8"x10" at 72 ppi) but without the ugly numbers. Or you can have the original scans (slightly larger, and 300 ppi--you can cut yourself out if these at a fairly good size!) Just tell me which size ("small" or "big") and which years you want.

The next step
Maybe we could make a "closed group" on FaceBook to share old pictures and memories.

To see all of the pictures and notes click here, or click the "Classmates" tag on any of the posts.

To see an individual year, click below:
  • 1960-1961 Kindergarten Mrs. Ristrom (sp?) (PM) (view)
  • 1961-1962 Grade 1 Mrs. Marilyn Barker (view)
  • 1962-1963 Grade 2 Mrs. Vanderveer (view)
  • 1963-1964 Grade 3 Mrs. Francisco (view)
  • 1964-1965 Grade 4 Mrs. Arlene (?) Briggs (view)
  • 1965-1966 Grade 5 Mrs. Twomey (view)
  • 1966-1967 Grade 6 Miss Janice Webster (view)
  • 1967-1968 Grade 7 (7-3) Mrs. Esther (?) Lyall (view)
  • 1968-1969 Grade 8 (8-7) Mrs. Karen Wojahn (view)
More thoughts

As I recall, there were two kindergarten classes, "AM " and "PM." I don't know how many classes there were in the other Encinita years (let's put our heads together?) And I'm pretty sure there were eight homerooms in seventh grade (7-1 through 7-8) and 10 in eighth grade (8-1 through 8-10). Anyone who has the yearbook from those years could settle that.

Further, I remember this about "my hall" in 7th and 8th grades:

7th grade, 1st hall:
Science: Mr. Erwin Florence (7-1 homeroom teacher)
English: Mrs. Curturillo (7-2 homeroom teacher)
Math: Mrs. Lyall (7-3 homeroom teacher)
Social Studies: Mr. Todd (7-4 homeroom teacher)

Principal: Mr. Woodland
Music: Miss Jodie Boies
Band: Mr. Warren Lindgren
P.E.: Mr. Roger Young
Shop: Mr. Nikeloff (sp?)

8th grade, 2nd hall:
Social Studies: Mrs. Karen Wojahn (8-7 homeroom teacher)
Science: Mr. Walker (8-8 homeroom teacher)
English: Mr. Kelley (8-9 homeroom teacher)
Math: Mr. Walter Emerson (8-10 homeroom teacher)

Principal: Mr.
Music: Mrs. Jodie Adkins (she got married)
Band: Mr. Warren Lindgren
P.E.: Mr. Roger Young
Shop: Mr. Nikeloff (sp?)

I can't remember other teachers (art, home ec) or the other halls in any detail (Mr. Blugrind?). Again, if you have a yearbook from those years, I'd appreciate your helping me out, either with scans or by adding info to the comments. (I'm sure I have yearbooks somewhere; I just haven't found them yet. Maybe next time I'm back from China.)


  1. Jim, you are amazing. I remember all these years of my schooling like it was yesterday and have fond memories of my time at Encinitas, Muscatel, and RHS. What I find amazing about you is that you are actually organized and motivated to pull all of this together somehow. I applaud you.

    I am not sure how much help I am on spellings of some of the teacher's names, but I do remember most of them. I'll wrack my brains and see what I can conjure up!

    I have been looking for over ten years now for my dear old friend, Diane Quinn. I'm sure you remember her. Her middle name was Maureen and she was married to a David Kohout right out of high school and they had two children, a girl and a boy. I think her daughter's name was April. They divorced and she remarried a man named Michael Shaw. But I lost track of her about ten years out of high school. She never attended any reunions and no one seems to know how to find her. We were so, so close all through Jr. High and High School, I am sad I cannot find her now. She was a nurse in Labor and Delivery at a hospital in So San Gabriel when I last spoke with her.

    If you or anyone else knows anything about Diane Maureen Quinn Kohout Shaw, Please Let Me Know!!

    Thank you for all your hard work on this and I will try to help out where and when I can.

    Take care,

    Virginia Clawson Bryson, class of '73

  2. Dear James,
    My sister, Ana Varona, was your classmate in Mrs. Vanderveer's class 1962-63. She's at the top row: A2.
    So many wonderful memories of Encinita School!

    Emilia Varona

    1. Sorry: Just saw this! Thanks so much for the information (and sorry I didn't remember Ana's name). Yes, I'm grateful for the hard work of Encinita's teachers. Take care!


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