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11 thoughts on “Memories

  1. I grew up in Westchester, and also lived in Play Del Rey.
    The first house where I lived with my mother and father
    was on 83rd st. about 3 houses north of Kentwood on the south side of the street right next strore to where Mrs. Lynch used to live. From 1963 to 1966 lived my grandparents on my mother side in Play Del Rey at 130 Ellen St. and then from 1966 to 1980 in Westchester at 7800 McConnell Ave.

    I think that this is a good way to keep in touch with old friends and rember that good times that we had growing up in westchester


    • Welcome, David. Thanks for your post. You can click on the heading and see the other pages, too, here. I think you’re already on the Facebook page, too, so GREAT!

      I grew up at 6606 W. 81st just 2 houses west from Emerson Avenue. My father sold that house in the early 1990s for just over 200K and after some major remodeling it was recently reported by Lisa S. as on the market for 2.3 million, I think.

      My parents bought that house for 24K in 1963.


      Debra J. Chandler

  2. Good old Westchester. So many fond memories and so long ago.

    Westchester remains a changing community.

    The class of 1975 was large as far as I can remember.

    I have moved so far away several times – London, Tokyo and Riyadh overseas and I am somewhat settled in the Bay Area although the word settled makes me unsettled.
    Last month I was in Beijing on business and reminded that the Westchester community is near a world class airport and super large city. Westchester seems alternately dynamic and rather provincial. What surprises me most is that I have crystal clear memories of some terrific Westchester High classmates.

  3. Glad I found this blog. I attended Osage ave school, then Westport Heights school, then graduated from Airport Junior high in 1960. Alot of my memories center around the shopping district on La Tijera and Centinela. I remember getting an ice cream soda at Thriftymart. I remember the day Hellman hardware burned down, everyone from the neighborhood was on hand to watch the firemen put it out. I used to romp through the bean fields at the end of Airport blvd. I could watch the movies at the centinela drive-in from my back yard on 74th st. I attended Westchester High for about two months when my family moved to northern cal. I could go on and on…Such neat memories.

  4. A friend of mine was Westchester High’s first varsity football coach–Jack McCafferty. Jack had been a friend of Manila John Basilone at Iwo Jima. Manila John was KIA and Jack was shot in the face. In those days Westchester’s games were played at what is now Orville Wright. I remember going to several Milk Bowl games there, walking from Cowan Avenue Elementary down to 80th for the games.
    We entered Orville Wright in September of 58 and it was a great school. The men teachers were all vets from World War II and they understood the importance of discipline and personal conduct. I am proud that I attended Mr. Hefner’s memorial service several years ago.
    I remember Westchester when there was no dome on the Lutheran Church. I remember Westchester American Little League when there was no grass on the infield. I remember Monte Montana coming to Cowan and I remember the wonderful teachers I had at Cowan.
    Someday, people will write about how great it was to have Obamacare. I prefer to remember how it was when no one locked their doors and families only had one car..

    • Think I was at Orville Wright starting in ’59 (year of the LA Dodgers first World Series. I remember Coach Hefner and Coach Rall (is that how we called them? or was it Mr?). Maybe you were there when a new woman PE teacher arrived who was a refugee from the Hungarian Uprising of 1958? She was an athlete who ran sprints, and I recall a race where she ran pretty close to our fastest guy, Lynn Hinshaw, who later became a really good FB player at Westchester HS. There were more PE teachers, but just can’t dig their names up at the moment.

  5. I went to Orville Wright 61-62 and remember mr Hefner, rall and wagerman and knew Lynn Hinshaw. i think he became an all city
    Running back for WHS. I played B football at WHS and recall Tom Overlin was our QB and an amazing athlete. Growing up in westchester was a privilege in retrospect. We seemed to be at the center of a new California culture. Surfing toes and DW. Finding Acme roller skates and making skateboards that we used before the advent of polyurethane. I played football in Pop Warner with Rodger Ericson who became a big wave rider in Hawaii. I was friends with Phil Hartman who was a talented artist and hilarious guy. He painted crazy figures all over Dave Rusek’s bedroom walls to the consternation of his parents. I recall going to zaffs for burgers(later to become the Shack) and hanging out at the diner that was next to the lagoon in playa del Rey. I forget the name. I haven’t lived there since the 70s
    So many things I remember that pop up. I don’t remember you Denis but I’m sure I knew you back then.

    • I remember all those names mentioned. I went to Orville Wright Jr High from 1963 to 1965. Danny, didn’t you become a realtor. I remember you also.Remember Caperton in the garden.
      Ron Schwartz

  6. I’m back. Spent time in Westchester from early 1967-1995 because my then girlfriend and her family lived on Dunfield off of 80th. Having grown up in Lennox and Inglewood, the only time I had visited Westchester before that was during the early hours of the morning on Thursday while throwing the Westchester Citizen (the Pink Throwaway) newspaper from 1958-1960. I could tell it was upscale, and honest, I did not mean to blow out one of the windows of a customer’s home during one delivery pass. And yes, we stopped, took down the address and informed the newspaper that the kid, Roy, did it. No, I did not lose any pay. The crew didn’t think a 12 year-old could do that. Yes, I pitched baseball and threw aspirin tablets for Lennox High and El Camino College until Uncle Sam wanted my services in 1968. Once I began visiting my girlfriends parents at 8001 Dunfield Avenue, I was blown away at just how nice an area it was.
    At Christmas time, a paperboy put together big candles with a lightbulb insert. Smart kid. He made and sold them to customers all over Westchester. Residents put lights up all over the community. My father-in-law was a member of the Kentwood Guardians, and the area was pristine. It didn’t hurt that he was the President of the Chamber of Commerce, Past District Governor of the Westchester Rotary, helped come up with the name of Orville Wright Junior High being a major player at a local corporation along LAX. His long time friendship with the founder of Westchester and his family made him a loyal servant to the community. If I come across as one bragging, I don’t mean to be. I was and am grateful to have known the man and how he served as chair over 34 plus organizations such as the Boy Scouts, March of Dimes and on and on. My wife and all four of her siblings went through school from K-12 in Westchester. I enjoyed attending Westchester High football games back when they dominated Gardena and city play. They were a powerhouse in those days; that was in the mid to later 60’s. The Dunfield residence was a favorite place to hang out during the holidays. My mother-in-law with the help of her three daughters and a couple of lady friends put on a feast that blew my mind. I never passed up 3rd’s, and was ready for dessert, asap. For a 5′ 9″, 180 lb. fellow, I had hollow legs. What sweet memories and smells from those days. Once our three children came along, we always gathered back at Grandpa and Grandma’s home on Dunfield. Several long time friends were with us. During a visit to Westchester with our 40 something year-old son a few years back, we came across the “Open House” for 8001 Dunfield Avenue. We decided to go in and not give a hint that we had been part of the home’s history. The realtor let us have run of every room. Both my son and I were moved with contained emotion as if we had gone through time travel. What an experience!! I could see in my mind’s eye my wife’s younger siblings sitting around the Christmas tree while my mother-in-law passed out the presents, and my father-in-law insisted on saving the wrapping paper and ribbons. We don’t do that anymore.
    The only things that had changed in the home were the additions of a bathroom on the 80th Street side of the home and a wet bar in the large bedroom adjacent to the bathroom addition.
    The area where my in-laws had raised their five kids still looked good with the changed landscaping. The home goes for well over a million dollars these days considering its location near LAX, freeway access, UCLA and other convenient needs and venues.
    I appreciate the efforts and contribution to the memories of Westchester. After all, I started visiting there when I was 19 years old, married there when 20 and have gone back to visit many, many times with my wife. Westchester is a special place to our family. Lastly, about Westchester: While dating, and after my wife and I were married, we frequented a restaurant called Tiny Naylor’s on the northeast corner of Manchester and Sepulveda where a multistory bank stood the last time I was in the area.

    I will share here with you writers, and I am not one, but I took seven years to put together a written documentary of the Community of Lennox California that is posted as follows:
    On Google: Lennox Lancers Home Page. Once there, you will see the front view of Lennox High from the 1960’s, and it has been a middle school for years. Music from the 60’s and perhaps 70’s will be played, so turn up your volume. Now, move your cursor to the upper left corner of the page and then move it down about four inches while looking for “New Lennox Documentary”. I along with my fellow Lancer wrote and edited the documentary for presentation online. It was a labor of love interviewing former students and people who lived there or worked near there. If interested, click on the annual (yearbook) for 1965 and you’ll find my grad picture. My varsity baseball pitcher with me in action against Lawndale High during the spring of 1965 is located on one of those pages under the heading of “Hand letting loose”. Fun memories!

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