Early in 2008, the committee learned of the passing of Classmate Jim Danz and shared that information with the email list of '59 graduates.  Almost immediately, classmates replied with their remembrances of Jim -- and updates about what they had been doing "the last 50 years." 

Thus began a series of emails from the committee that shared that information, and we have placed several of the emails in this section of the website so those who have been found more recently can catch up.  We even added a few trivia quizzes.

We hope you "enjoy the conversations." Now, with this website, you will be able to continue to "blog" and talk to one another using the "Message Board" feature.  Just click on it when you're ready and you'll get the hang of it pretty quick.  

But for now ... do a little catching up from the past year's Sequoia/Redwood City Memories Emails:

Sequoia/Redwood City Memories, January 2008

Here are a few more notes from Sequoia classmates. If you'd like to join in, just respond. It's all in the spirit of building up to our 50th reunion in 2009, so please enjoy the memories and the connections. Each of us has traveled a different path. But we all seemed to have had the same starting place and time - Redwood City in the 50s. And I, for one, am enjoying the personal glimpses back in time as well as the insights and the updates. Hope you are, too. Steve
HELEN BOATRIGHT HIGHT      (helen@cncnet.com)
* * *
It's great to read e-mails from people that I haven't thought about since we graduated.  Life has been wonderful to me - as I'm guessing it has been to you.  My husband and I owned our own company for 30 years - sold it 5 years ago.  We have a son (40) and a daughter (38) - and two grandchildren, who make it start all over again.  We have had the opportunity to travel a great deal - not as much the last few years because of elderly family members.  At any rate, I can't tell you how much I'm looking forward to seeing you (and so many others) in 2009.  
Norma Carney Huskey(NormaLouC@comcast.net)
* * *
Hi Steve,
Does anybody remember Zesto's?
Rodger Coon (muzcal@sbcglobal.net)

* * *
Fifty years have passed and thinking back, BOY -- didn't we grow up in a wonderful time?  Just think of it, gas at $0.19 a gallon with triple blue or green stamps, houses affordable if you were working, and jobs not to hard to find (if you were willing to work).  What a time we were fortunate enough to grow up during.  I thank my lucky stars.

I started school at
Central School on Broadway and Middlefield, part way through first grade they closed Central School and those from our area went to HooverSchool.  I spent a lifetime at Hoover
. I didn't think that time could pass s-o-o-o slowly.  I remember Frank Stacy -- fifth or maybe sixth grade.  He died in a fire at a fort the kids were building across the street from his house.  What a shame, he was and will forever be a good friend.

Those times, those people, and those places are gone forever, but they sure are fun to look back on, so I guess they are not really gone.  They are memories that I talk to friends about.  I enjoy reminiscing.  I think a lot about Sequoia.  Sequoia had the most wonderful shop classes I've ever heard about: sheet metal, auto, wood, machine, general metals, radio, and mechanical drawing.  Those shops gave lots of us jobs when we graduated and those shops kept a lot of those jobs for us.  The shop teachers were terrific.  (Those shops are all gone, except for the new wood shop.)  I can't express my disappointment more at that happening.  School was hard for me, and the shop classes kept me there until I graduated.  How marvelous can that be?

After high school, I worked in a cabinet shop for awhile, then went to work on a construction crew laying underground pipe as a laborer.  Then a four-year stint in the U.S. Air Force including 46 months at Edwards AFB in the Mojave.  Then back to underground construction and on to three years with Lockheed Missiles and Space (as a draftsman).  Met my bride, and we got married in 1967.  We had one son. 
In 1970, I got caught in a layoff at Lockheed and went back to working in underground construction.  I stayed with that until I retired, first as a laborer, then as a utility plumber, and as a foreman.  I retired on Halloween night of 2002. Since then, we have been doing a lot of traveling, mostly in the U.S. and Canada.

For 22 years it was my great pleasure to teach 4H Club kids how to train their family dogs in obedience and junior handling (showmanship).  Fourteen of those kids were first place winners at California State Fair in
.  Each time, it made my feet walk about three feet off the ground!

I'm sure glad I grew up when and where I did and that I don't have to start now.  It's a much more difficult time now than it was then.

Glen Stimpson (

Sequoia/Redwood City Memories, April 2008
Let’s start this one off with some Redwood City trivia:
RC had TWO movie theatres when we were growing up. Name them and tell me where they were located.   A bonus if you can tell me what extraordinary event happened at one of them.
* * *
 Hi Steve et al.  I transferred into Sequoia in my sophomore year so didn't know as many students as most.  I lived down the street from Paladino Market and shopped there with my parents for almost all the years they were in business.  It is now a Gray’s Paint store.  How that area has changed.  I'm still living in Redwood City and work as a consultant for Sequoia Union High School district.  As a project manager, I get to work on all the new construction and renovation in the district and select all the interior products as well.  Almost every classroom at Sequoia has been renovated including the library and Carrington Hall.  Sequoia has a new science and technology building, new woodshop, new ceramics building and classroom, a new two-story building with classrooms and multi-use room that is attached to the original building. and we'll be starting on a new gym this summer.  The campus looks gorgeous.  It might be fun to plan a tour of the school for those returning for the 50th.
Charleen Willis White (cwhite@seq.org)
* * *
Dear Charlene,  I don’t know whether you remember me, but I came to Sequoia from Japan in sophomore year like you.  I doubt our paths crossed much, but I remember you around the campus.  It is very nice of you to write and especially to know that you are part of the renewal of the campus. We would love to have your personal briefing on the campus renovation when we see you in 2009.  Until then, take care of yourself.
Yoshi Minegishi (y.minegishi@comcast.net)

* * *
Hi Charleen - I see my cousin Audrey's name on your list so I guess you graduated in '59, too.  I transferred into Sequoia from M-A at the
beginning of my Junior year.  I'm not too good on names but I'm hoping to recognize many faces - and voices.  I was in Acapella, Treble Clef,
SGS and on the yearbook staff.  I enjoyed participating in My Sister Eileen, Brigadoon and the Sequoia Varieties, too.  Yoshi was my friend
and graduation partner. 

My very favorite place was Renato's Pizza on 101 S. of town.  Now that was authenticity!  And, living near Phoenix AZ now - I sure do miss our forays to the beaches!  Even lived for a few years in Ensenada, N. of Half Moon Bay, when my 3 kids were very young.  Ah, the aromas of saltwater and eucalyptus.
Looking forward to meeting/recognizing everyone in 2009. 

Kate Russell
Administrative Secretary
Natural Resources Division
Arizona State Land Department
Phone:  (602) 542-4625  Fax:  (602) 542-3507

(QUESTION FROM STEVE: Renato’s was great! How many of you remember the day that Me ‘N Ed’s opened behind JiffyBurger at 5 Points and gave out free pizza all day?)
* * *
Roger, I sure do remember Zesto's, and I remember Paladino's, where my Dad shopped all the time and my Dad knew Hank and Lois Paladino very well.  It's fun and sometimes sad to think about the good old days.  I miss them.  Rodger, didn't we go to Washington school together?  Sometimes my memory fails me but I bet we all can relate to that! (Roger, my husband wants to know if you know what the name of Edwards AFB before it became Edwards AFB?)
My husband and I will be married 49 years this coming May.  We met here in Vegas, where we still live.  We have 3 grown kids, 4 grandchildren and 2 great grandsons.  Every one of the kids lives here, too.
There are so many things I remember, but I don't want to bore anyone.  I heard this song this morning and I'm sending you all the link, so sit back, close your eyes and remember the good times.
Marilyn AKA (Mert Volis) (mp369@aol.com)
* * * 
* * *
Hey Steve, Haven't seen you in 49 years. How have you been all that time? You still in Redwood? I'm down in Oceanside. Great weather. I talked to some guy named Glen about CentralSchool. He said he thinks you have a picture from Kindergarten class. I sure I'm in there also. If you have it, could you send me a copy? I'm in the process of making up a DVD of our family's life. It would be a welcome addition. Thanks. Hope to see everyone at the 50th. Take care of your self.
Bob Sutten  (
(Good to hear from you, Bob. Yes, I do have a Kindergarten photo of “our” CentralSchool class, and I think that’s you standing in the back row! I’ll try to get this photo up on the website. Others recognizable in the photo: Angie Valenti, Jean Miller, Jack Leslie, Colleen Garcelon, Pat Gadow, Joe DiBono, Tom Fritz, John Lovell, Glen & Gwen Stimpson, Shirley Meredith, Irvin Lapp…fun!
By the way, I think I probably attended more Redwood City schools than anyone. Started at Central, then to Hoover for first grade, family moved up by SequoiaHospital so I transferred to Lincoln, then to Clifford, then to McKinley, then to Carlmont & transferred to Sequoia to play baseball. Coach Bob Andersen told me to take shop because Carlmont was so new it had no shops. I did, got in, and proceeded to get my only “D” in high school – in SHOP! But at least our baseball team won a couple of championships!!!   Cheers, everyone.   Steve)
* * *
Hi, Steve.  It's good to hear from classmates after so many years.    The "Big 50"  should be a smashing success,  thanks be to you and your committee.   I knew that Jim Danz was ill, his brother, Ken Danz, mentioned it at his 50th  Sequoia class  reunion in 2004, the same year my husband, Harry, graduated.   A lot of girls thought he was a "hunk,” including myself.  The memories are so vivid of him, Sandy Laurence and Bob Collins.   Sandy passed away August 2004 in Reno.

We stayed in Redwood City and have seen all the changes, some very good and not so good.  Our 2 daughters, who graduated from Sequoia in 81 and 82, blessed us with 8 grandchildren.   The oldest, a grandaughter, graduated from Sequoia 2 years ago, and we have 3 granddaughters there this year, a freshman, junior and senior.  They are a joy to behold!  Look forward to hearing from many more. 
Judy Kunkel Deforest (JudyDeforest@yahoo.com)
* * *
Steve- you really stirred things up. I'm enjoying reading the sequoia memories. John Tognoli and I have been emailing. We did a lot of things together. Also, I called Jim Nance. We did a number of rowdy things at S, and went in the army together. 
Mike Kuschmann ()
* * *

Sequoia/Redwood City Memories, May,2008
This is a LONG one, thanks to all your inputs this past week.so take your time and enjoy.  
Let's begin this one with our trivia question:
Redwood City had TWO movie theatres when we were growing up. Name them and tell me where they were located.   A bonus if you can tell us what extraordinary event happened at one of them.
The "official" answer is the last of the responses. But, for the record, here are your responses (in order of receipt), plus a few personal memories about the theatres:
1. Hi Steve, They were the Fox Theatre on Broadway and the Redwood Theatre just off Broadway, where they Bank of America is now.  There was an earthquake and the inside of the Fox was wrecked.

Norm and Shirley Souza (nanabozo@msn.com)
2. Well, I remember the Fox Theatre on Broadway (where it still is), and, I think it was the United Artist Theatre closer to El Camino where there is now a TV/appliance store --Anderson's TV I think.

Claudette (Moura) Sprague (csprague@stanford.edu)
3. As I remember the theaters:  The big one with the balcony and loge seats was the FOX and the smaller one was the REDWOOD. I think both of the theaters were located on Broadway, and I don't know about the extraordinary event.   I do remember many trips from La Honda to the movies in Redwood City. I am enjoying these emails so very much and one of these mornings when I have a little time I will send one to you to add to the Memories IV.
Rita Veit Brown (lrbrown@lanset.com)
4. Good morning Steve. Wow, I hope you publish the correct answers.  I do remember the two and where they were, but I don't remember the names or the event (was it a fire?).  Really enjoy the responses and remembrances from all of the folks, although I must admit that I need to take out a yearbook to put a face to the names.  That being said, I do remember you and many of the "baseball guys" as well as a few others.  Looking forward to the "big" event in 2009. Thanks for all of your efforts through this process.
5. Steve, the two theaters that were in RWC were the Redwood, located across the street from the RWC Tribune and next to Zesto's. I believe that Anderson's TV is located there now.
The other Theater was the Sequoia located on Broadway. In 1950, the Sequoia went through a complete renovation and was reopened as the Fox Theater on Sept 15, 1950 with a "Gala Bond-Hollywood Star Premiere" It had a reopening gala with the picture "My Blue Heaven" starring Betty Grable and Dan Dailey..... The MC for the evening was George Jessel.
I have the original program from that night, and a ticket  Sec.  Right......Row B.......Seat 8
And Carl Britschgi was our mayor at the time....one more thing about the Fox opening that comes to mind. I was sitting in the bleachers across the street during the opening... I remember all the spot lights and "search lights" and the people...  I was only 9, but I still remember it.
Leroy Milam (Leroy1888@aol.com)
6. Hi Steve:  The Fox on Broadway and the Redwood on whatever street the newspaper was on -- am I close?
Bev Moll Colgin (bevsvo@aol.com)
7. Fox Theater on Broadway; Redwood Theater on Winslow. Extraordinary event was an earthquake at the Fox Theater, which did the balcony in. The emails have been really fun to read. 
8. The "Redwood" was on the side street (California?) between Broadway and James. and between the railroad tracks and ECR. It was torn down in the late forties or early fifties.  I think that this one was the one where someone donated the organ to the Congregational Church for the new location in Farm Hills (McGarvey & Euclid). 
The other was originally the "Sequoia", located on Broadway I think between Jefferson and Middlefield--somewhere in that part of the main business district. The ceiling collapsed one night during the show--I recall that there were at least several injuries--I don't recall if any fatalities.  When it reopened, it was the "Fox".
Glenn Joesten (glenn476@4fast.net)
9. Well, the Redwood Theater was, I thought, across from the county courthouse, but the Fox is there, so it must have been there before, too.  I'm not sure where the Redwood Theater was, but I remember when the balcony fell down.  The wife of my Dad's partner (Dr. Case) fell off the balcony as it fell, and she may have broken a leg, but was okay later.  
My dad (Dr. Richard Ames) shared an office with Dr. Case on the triangular plot across from the old city library.  My sister, Susie, and I sitting in the car while waiting for my dad, memorized the saying etched onto the side of the library.  I proudly recite it now:
"All that mankind has done, thought, gained, or been is lying as in magic preservation in the pages of books; for these are the chosen possessions of man."
Sherry Ames Lewis (picky@slonet.org)
(Besides the Carlyle quote, I remember the goldfish ponds all along the entrance walkway.    And John Tognoli writes that Sherry's dad brought him into the world at Palo AltoHospital. Small world, indeed. Steve)
10. Fox and Redwood Theatres. Extraordinary event? No idea what your talking about.  But I do remember King Kong movie free at the Fox on the last day of the school year. What was the name of the free movie they showed over the Easter period??? Redwood theater was on California between James and Broadway.  The roof of the Fox Theater caved in one year.
Bob Sutten (Sutt202@aol.com)
11. OK, Steve, here's my answer for the trivia question.  The theaters were the Fox located on Broadway and the Redwood (can't remember the exact street, but it was about a block off El Camino towards the train station). I also remember walking to the theater at night to catch a movie when I was in grammar school at McKinley. Try to imagine your kids out there in today's world doing some of the things we did!  Also, the extraordinary event was when the balcony in the Fox theater collapsed.
Donna Newquist Hauck (hauckdj@yahoo.com)
 12. Yes, I do remember the two theaters in Redwood City.  One was the Fox Theater on Broadway and the other one was the Redwood Theater on Perry Street.  Sorry, I don't know what 'extraordinary event' happened at one of them.
Cathy Peters Stojanovich (2stos1@comcast.net)
 13. You know, Steve, I told Norm that it originally was the Sequoia, too!  Then the Fox.  And the Redwood was just across the street from Graf's.  I'm just not sure of the name of the street anymore.  Old-timers setting in! Thanks for all the updates.  There are so many memories running through my head each time I read them!  Can't wait for the 50th.
Shirley Meredith Souza (nanabozo@msn.com)
14. Steve, the Fox, on Broadway, and the Redwood on California, which was replaced by the B of A behind Graf's.  I can't think of anything extraordinary at either one.
Pete Savoia (pete.6@att.net)
15.   The Redwood Theater location unknown, and The Fox or The Sequoia Theater on Broadway.
Daloe (Dee) DeBenedetti Barmore (DeeknLucyBarmoor@cs.com)
(...who shares that she was, in fact, BORN in Redwood City and that her dad was the city's first historian)
16. There were 2 theatres in RC, the first being the Fox (nee-New Sequoia) built in 1928 and the other was the Redwood which was a Quonset hut style located on Theater Street right behind El Camino near Broadway. It was built during the war and torn down years ago to make way for a B of A.   It's now an Anderson's TV outlet. In 1950 or so, portions of the plaster ceiling in the New Sequoia fell on some patrons during a movie and the theatre was closed, remodeled and re-opened as the Fox. The Fox is now privately owned by a real estate guy and is used for concerts, etc.
Rodger Coon (muzcal@sbcglobal.net)
17. The Redwood and the Fox . The Fox balcony fell and hurt some people. Hey, if you are going to make copies of the Central School class, I want a couple -- just let me know what the cost is. I talked to my twin sister, Gwen, yesterday and mentioned Angie Valenti, and you should have heard her squeal!
Glen Stimpson (auroral43@earthlink.net)
(Update:  I plan to place it on this website. Steve)
18. Hi Steve, I am loving these E-Mails; What great memories! And I do know the 2 movie theatres, THE FOX on Main St., and I think it was the Redwood Theatre -- and I can see it, but the streets are so different now. Was it Middlefield or right by Jefferson, near the fire station? I remember Sat. Flash Gordon. HAHA I have a DVD of the old Flash Gordon! What a HOOT!
Bonnie Selvitella (bonnieselvitella@msn.com)
19. The two theatres were the Sequoia theater on Broadway where the Fox Theater is currently, and the Redwood Theater, where Anderson's is located.  Sometime in the 50's,(the date eludes me) the balcony of the Sequoia collapsed.  I think it was a minor earthquake that caused this.
Peter Barbieri (pbarbieri@sbcglobal.net)
20. The Fox - Didn't the ceiling or the balcony fall there once, probably before our time?  I think the other was a drive in. 
Kate (Kay Mullen) Russell (KRussell@land.az.gov)
21. Hi Steve, The two theatres were Redwood, it was off Broadway, near El Camino on a side street. And the other was Sequoia, on Broadway. The balcony collapsed, and when it opened again it was the Fox.  Don't know why I remember that guess I went to the movies alot. HaHa. I'm looking forward to the reunion and seeing everyone again. Time sure flies. See Ya then.
Helen Bastasini Kuhn (Rockin_K@Charter.net)
 22. The two theaters were the Redwood Theater which was located where Anderson's TV is now located.  The second is the Fox Theater still located in the same place.  I'm not sure what special event took place at either one of them. My wife and I really enjoy the e-mails from the alumni of Sequoia '59.  Keep them coming!
Bob Hosking (azladyracer@cox.net)
23. Steve--the fox theater and the drive-in?
Mike Kuschman (mkuschman@cfl.rr.com)

OK, here is the "official" answer, direct from the Redwood City Library Research Staff.  As you'll see, most of you were on the money:
Dear Mr. Chell,

We have checked the files on your two part question, and can offer the following information which (I hope) will answer your location and dates questions.

The Sequoia Theatre on Broadway had its roof collapse on
21 June 1950, with damage and a number of injuries.  I have copied from our files the articles relating to the incident, and will be very happy to send them on to you.  The Theatre, which was owned by the Fox Corporation, reopened as the Fox Theatre on 15 September 1950
; I also have copied the stories from the Tribune relating to the reopening festivities, which featured movie stars appearing live in RC for the event.

The Redwood Theatre was located at 50 (subsequently 40)
California Street
at the corner of Wincklebleck starting in 1933.  The last listing for it was 1954, in the 1955 directory the site was listed as "under construction".  I found nothing in our clipping file on the Redwood Theatre, although it was one of many smaller movie houses which fell to the onslaught of television in the mid 1950's.

Best of luck with your class reunion.
(Mrs)  Mary K. Spore-Alhadef, Librarian
Local History Collections
Redwood City Public Library
(Update: See Favorite Links for early-day photos of both the Sequoia/Fox & Redwood Theatres.)
Next trivia.or, more correctly, "recollection" time:
Cheaper by the Dozen..complete the blanks:
1. _____ Salt Company
2. ______ Tannery
3. Redwood City _______ (newspaper)
4. _______ Men & Boys (two possible answers.same place, though!)
5. _______ Miles Dodge (his daughters were a year or so ahead of us)
6. Blue ______ Ice Cream
7. Keith _____, Photographer to RC Elementary Schools
8. _______ Sports Shop (two possible answers; different stores)
9. Flowers by ______ , where thousands of Jr. Prom wrist corsages were purchased!
10. _________ Hardware, at Main & Stambough Streets
11. ______ & ______ Drive-In Restaurant, where we all "cruised."
12. Stickney's _______ House
If you have a fun personal anecdote about any of these places, please share it.
Other news, notes, and questions:

Hi Steve, I was shocked to hear that Sandy Lawrence passed away in '04. Did Bob Collins also pass away? Sandy was such a pretty girl, and Bob was very nice looking. Were they married?  I remember Zesto's and Me 'n Ed's very well. My favorite pizza place was FRANKIE, JOHNNIE AND LUIGI'S, TOO. THEIR PIZZA WAS GREAT.  I haven't heard anyone mention Graf's hamburger place. Do you remember that Carolyn Graf's parents owned it? They also had great burgers. Does anyone know where Carolyn lives? All the questions for now; let's keep the news coming. Good to hear from our classmates. 
I would like to know if anyone knows the whereabouts of Lynn Davenport. I would love to hear from her. Can anyone put me in touch with her?   Take care
Helen Boatright Hight (Helen@cncnet.com)

Surprise! Found in San Carlos by John Tognoli:

Steve,  thanks for the email.  When I left RC-- you, Billy Lightfoot, Walt Wright, Paul Thornton and a few others were doing great.  I ended up in Sacramento for my junior/senior years, but I would love to be included in any reunion.  I managed to get a degree or two from U.C. Berkeley and ended up for the next thirty years with Xerox.  My wife Carolyn and I have lived in San Carlos for the past 35 years and, frankly, I have wondered why I have never run into anyone that I knew from my first two years at Sequoia.....A chance to do it now would be great!!!   Hopefully, we will see you within the next year.   (Steve, when I saw the distribution list of people on the e mail list, I can't believe how many people that I remember and would like to have some contact with in the future!!  Thanks.)

Brian Tanner (booker94070@yahoo.com)

* * *
Glad to hear Walt Wright is staying in touch. I have a very vivid recollection of Walt... freshman year football. Me a 135 lb. 5th stringer… end of a hard day's practice, and it's the last drill of the day.... I'm tired, I'm sweaty, I'm sore, and I'm angry that I let Joe Marvin talk me into coming out 4 football instead of playing 20s basketball.. But Joe was our PE teacher at Hoover and he wanted all his boys playing... so the drill is this: the ball carrier runs diagonally across the field. The tackler runs at an angle to make contact.....so, just my luck, Walt is the carrier. And he had to be 60 lbs heavier than lil tog! So I said "whut the heck" and just went full-steam ahead and plowed into walt! I went flying, birdies were chirping in my ears! As I was getting up, Walt came by and said, "nice tackle, tog." And I decided right then and there that the end of the season would also be the end of tog's football career!
John Tognoli (jtog@tmail.com)
* * *
Bev Moll Colgin reports she's caring for her 93-year old father in Butte County. She moved to Paradise, CA, about ten years ago when her mom became ill. Her mom passed away in 2005, but her Dad is going strong! She's at bevsvo@aol.com if you'd like to say "hello."
(More Memories Emails on the Memories II page!)