Roger Tapson (’68) – 1950-2017

Roger J. Tapson – 1950 – 2017

Roger J. Tapson, who lived in Scranton since June 2014, died in the comfort of his home on Sept. 28, 2017.  Roger, born in Chicago on Aug. 8, 1950, was a lifelong resident of Southern California and a 1968 graduate of Anaheim High School. Although he missed the Pacific Ocean and watching the sun set over it, Roger loved learning about Pa. and the four seasons on the East Coast, which was new to him. His knowledge of music, literature and film was astonishing, and he was delighted and happy every day to learn and appreciate the music, art and talents of the people in Scranton. He felt every human being was important and should be told they were. You could not stop Roger from communicating with anyone and everyone he met in a positive, complimentary and respectful way.

Roger was a loyal L.A. Dodgers fan, revered Vin Scully and so enjoyed watching his favorite football teams. His life was cut short to finish watching the final games of the L.A. Dodgers’ 2017 exciting season and winning the National League Pennant. But all who knew Roger were honored to watch the games on his behalf and will continue to do so.

Besides the multitude of friends too long to list grieving, yet celebrating Roger’s life and the fortunate camaraderie they shared, most important to Roger is that he spent his final years with Shirley Cieri, his companion and true friend. Having known Roger while living in California several years ago, Shirley invited him to Scranton to renew their friendship and to provide a healthier environment to help ease some of his health issues.

As a result of helping Roger with his transition to Scranton, watching him learn about its histories, and seeing the many communities and beautiful landscapes through his eyes, he left a piece of himself that would make anyone proud to call Scranton and NEPA home.

Roger was one of God’s finest creations. He did not murmur or complain or find fault with God or anyone. He always prayed for other people. In Roger’s memory, we should do one kind act to one person on any given day.

Arrangements by Duffy & Snowdon Funeral Homes of Scranton & Moscow. For online condolences, visit the funeral home website.
Published in Scranton Times on Nov. 19, 2017

Bob Wines (’64) – 1946-2017

Bob Wines, whose life spanned from July 21, 1946 to Oct. 21, 2017,  passed away peacefully at his home in San Marino in the loving arms of his family at age 71. In May 2017, he was diagnosed with glioblastoma multiforme brain tumor.

Bob was born and raised in Anaheim, and graduated from Anaheim High in 1964 and them from USC in 1968.  A member of Phi Delta Theta Fraternity, Bob remained a loyal Trojan.

While at USC Bob met Denise Casaretto. In 1969 they were married and lived in San Marino where they raised their two daughters.

Bob was involved in the seafood industry for all of his career and enjoyed the extensive travel that was associated with it.

Bob is survived by Denise, his loving wife of 48 years.
They are the proud parents of Lisa (John) Weithas and Kimberlee (Alan) Lenertz and the devoted grandparents of Emma and Lila Weithas and Alex and Gillian Lenertz.

His grandchildren were the light of his life. He was a loyal and enthusiastic supporter of all their school and sporting activities.
Bob is also survived by his mother, Ruth Wines, and his brother, Jon (Deb) Wines.

He was preceded in death by his father Ralph Kenton Wines, who served as the AUHSD Superintendent from 1969 to 1978. He also opened new schools for the District, serving as principal of Western JHS from 1954-56.

He will be lovingly remembered by his sisters-in-law Mary Ann (Byron) Boyer, Gina Maxwell and Debra Casaretto (Robert Perez).
Bob was a devoted, protective and cherished part of all of the lives of his family.

His memory will live forever in the hearts of those who were touched by his love and friendship. Bob’s peaceful passing was a perfect ending to a beautiful life. At his request there was a private family service. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Bob’s honor to the charity of your choice or show an act of kindness in Bob’s memory.

Carey Lord Gibbs – 1932 – 2017

Carey Lord Gibbs passed away Monday evening October 9, 2017, following a noble fight against a cancer diagnosis received shortly after celebrating his 85th birthday with family and friends.

Carey was born July 5, 1932, to Robert Aubrey and Margie Lord Gibbs. He was raised in Greensboro, North Carolina, with his sisters, Marian and Laurie, and brothers, Thomas Adin, Roger, Carl, and Ed.

As a young man in North Carolina, Carey enlisted in the Navy and traveled to Southern California to serve his country. While stationed in San Diego from 1950 to 1954, he served as the Chaplain’s assistant.

Following his discharge from service he went home to North Carolina, only to return to complete his education as a music major from Chapman College and make California his permanent home. In later years, Carey received his Master’s Degree from California State University at Fullerton.

Carey was the choir director and taught reading at Anaheim High School from 1959 to 1996. During those 37 years, he was known affectionately as Mr. Gibbs by students who loved and appreciated him so much. He left an indelible impression on so many of his students. Throughout the years, he and his wife would encounter so many of his former students along life’s way and often hear so much expression as to what a difference and influence Carey had made in their lives.

Carey also served as Minister of Music at several large churches over a period of more than 30 years. He enjoyed many years serving at Anaheim First Christian Church with their lifelong friends Rev. Ragon and Joyce Flannery from 1968 to 1984. Carey’s wife, always accompanying by his side, served as the church organist. Together, they brought beautiful music to many during Sunday church services, weddings, and funerals.

During his musical career, Carey also played the organ at the Wurlitzer exhibit on Main Street at Disneyland. In addition, he gave private instruction in voice, organ, and piano to many students through the years and also provided instruction to students at Fullerton Junior College.

In November 1966, Carey married his former student and choir accompanist, Linda Pebley. Carey and Linda would have celebrated their 51st anniversary in November. Together, they raised their family of five girls in Anaheim.

His greatest passions in life were God, family, music, and travel. Carey and Linda enjoyed more than 15 years of retirement together and traveled the beautiful lower 48 states extensively in their motorhome and even braved the Alaskan Highway for the trip of a lifetime. They returned to Alaska several times with various daughters to share this experience and the beauty.

Carey walked strong in his Christian faith and was a good and faithful servant. He knew exactly where he was headed in his final travels and he seemed at peace knowing the outcome. He was the greatest example to all of us by his strong faith, incredible love, amazing perseverance, and positive spirit.

All who knew Carey recognized him as a man of the highest moral integrity, who was loving, caring, compassionate, humble, humorous, always with a twinkle in his eyes and a smile in his heart, and always had a gentlemanly outreach to all he encountered. It was impossible to find anyone who didn’t love him and think he was the greatest of guys.

Carey is survived by his wife, Linda; daughter and son-in-law, Laurie and Bob Morey and granddaughters, Leah and Joy; daughter and son-in-law, Shirley and Rick Noble and grandchildren, Joshua, Jessica, Jason, and Jonathon; daughter, Patricia and grandchildren, Sarah and Steven; daughter and son-in-law, Marie and Fred Fanucchi and granddaughter, Kasey; and daughter and son-in-law, Carrie and David Montz and granddaughters, Sarah-beth and Caitlin.

Carey was also the loving and playful great grandfather to nine, with the tenth great grandchild expected in December. He was a wonderful and incredibly loving husband, father, grandfather, and great-grandfather who was loved so deeply by all and will be missed immeasurably.

A memorial service will be held at 3:00pm, Friday, October 20, 2017, at Anaheim First Christian Church, 520 W. South St., Anaheim. The family will receive friends following the service at the home Carey loved so much in Anaheim.

Published in Orange County Register from Oct. 15 to Oct. 19, 2017

Anaheim Loses Custom Car Guru Stan Betz

Legendary hot rodder and custom car builder, Stan Betz from Class of ’46, passed away today (Sept. 28). An AHS Hall of Famer, Stan had recently celebrated his 90th birthday.

Betz, who lost his right leg below the knee to polio at age 3, grew up  on a 10-acre orange ranch on Lemon Street in Anaheim.

But Betz wasn’t interested in ranching or learning his father’s skill as a hybridizer of orange trees and other fruit bearing plants.

What really caught his attention, and kept his interest for the rest of his life, was cars. And he had a great role model to encourage him.

His uncle Dick Kraft, one of the original hot rodders, was known for his many innovations, which included building and driving the first rail job called “The Bug.” A clone of “The Bug” is on display in the National Hot Rod Association Museum in Pomona. Kraft’s other custom-built cars are highly collectible.

Like his uncle, Stan’s cars have become famous in the automotive world and are shining examples of his legendary skills as a master car builder and painter.

His journey to becoming the center of the 1950s rod and custom culture, as well as a businessman who figured out a way to make money at doing something he loved, included a stop at Anaheim High School.

A 1946 grad, Betz confesses to having spent most of days at Anaheim High in the machine shop working on hot rods. He owned a Model-A roadster with a V-8 engine that was shoe-horned in during welding shop. Three years later he built a track T that he raced on local outlaw tracks when he wasn’t working the night shift at a gas station.

Back in the ‘50s, when hot rodding and car clubs were in high gear, Stan’s shop (a single car garage he rented for five bucks a month located in the alley behind the police station) was the meeting spot for The Street Sweepers, a car club he founded, named and sponsored.

Along with holding their meetings, the Sweepers would punch louvers, which are vents located in strategic positions on a car’s body to allow hot air to escape. Betz and his team were stamping louvers in hot rods, racecar hoods, deck lids, fenders, or anything a custom-car owner wanted punched. Guys came from miles around to get ventilated.

AHS Yearbook Ad of the Bean Hut

When not at Betz’s shop, the Sweepers would hang out at the 76 Station at the corner of Palm (Harbor) and Center (Lincoln) or at the Bean Hut, a.k.a the La Palma Drive-In. The Sweepers gave this iconic hangout the nickname “Bean Hut” and the drive-in became the favorite of car clubs throughout Orange County and beyond.

Back in the 1950s Stan drove a 1932 Sedan with a “hot flat head” that he finished in bright yellow. He also owned a ’51 Ford pick-up with Von Dutch flames, a cut down hood and “big and little” tires.

His love affair with the automobile continued throughout the decades when members of the Street Sweepers traded in their custom rides for college degrees and lives in the slow lane. Stan stayed in the trade and created automotive masterpieces.

When the louver business slowed down, Betz added paint products to his enterprise, which became Betz Speed and Color. His shop became known as the best place to find the exact color, especially for customers who wanted to match an existing stock or custom paint color.

Featured in countless magazine and newspaper articles, Betz has also been included in “Hot Rod History – Book Two: The Glory Years” by Tom Medley. Chapter Two is dedicated to Betz, “one of the best paint mixers around. Betz works in the sun and can match paint to an exactness that defies even the computers.”

One of his award-winning vehicles was a roadster he named “2032,” a completely custom-crafted candy raspberry red highboy pickup with Lincoln Mark VIII running gear.

Along with cars, Stan had a unique collection of MGM movie miniature cars, boats, trains and other vehicles that Hollywood filmed being driven over cliffs, crushed, crashed and blown up in thousands of movies. The 100-piece collection was featured in an early episode of “Visiting with Huell Howser.”

Reggie Massey – Nov. 6, 1926 – Aug. 22, 2017

Anaheim High has lost Class of 1944 graduate Reggie (Reynolds) Massey. Her birth name was Mary Jane but this spunky lady chose to be known as Reggie. She was nearing her 91st birthday when she passed away peacefully with her family at her side.

Reggie helped launch the Anaheim High School Alumni Association (AHSAA), when she was directed in 2008 by her classmates to explore what they could do to help “Old AU.”

Cook Auditorium was identified as an area of the school that needed renovation. While a major remodel hasn’t occurred as yet, the District painted, installed new flooring and made other improvements to the historic 1,200-seat auditorium built in 1936 as a Works Progress Administration project. Architectural plans were also drawn up for a complete renovation that would improve the stage site line, upgrade equipment and restore the school’s historic Robert Morgan pipe organ. 

But more importantly, this effort brought alumni back to the school and helped provide a voice for some 3000 students.

Another of Reggie’s efforts focused on the importance of obtaining the block of buildings on Lincoln Avenue next to Cook Auditorium. In 2016, the School District purchased this large parcel of land that will be used to expand the AHS campus.

Along with planning her class reunions for many years, Reggie was a champion of the high school by donating funds and materials, including hundreds of books used for the “Read Across America” program.

Reggie was a transplant to Southern California by way of El Dorado, Texas. More about Reggie’s life may be learned from a story about her in the Orange County Register written in 2008 by Eric Carpenter (also an AHS graduate):

“Her adult life had taken her away from Anaheim.

After high school, Reggie attended Fullerton Junior College for a few months before marrying her high-school sweetheart, Robert Massey, a career Navy man who flew fighter planes in the Pacific during World War II.

After the war, the couple moved around the country before settling on the East Coast.

That’s where Reggie first got the bug to become a leader for change. When she enrolled her son in school, she noticed there was no sidewalk leading to the school. And the lumber yard next door burned wood during the day, creating a potentially dangerous cloud that drifted toward the school.

“So I went to the mayor…And before long, they built a sidewalk and stopped burning wood,” she says. “That’s where I learned: When you see something you want changed, you have to ask.”

Reggie had five children – four boys and a girl. And the family settled in Arlington, VA where she lived for 43 years. She worked full-time as an administrative assistant for a U.S. Congressman, where she learned plenty about finding the people with the power to make change.

And she gained skills as an organizer and fundraiser there too, helping start an alternative school for students unmotivated by sitting at a desk all day.

Reggie returned to Orange County every few years to visit family, but she had no plans to move back – until Valentine’s Day 2002, when her husband died after an extended battle with Alzheimer’s disease.”

Reggie (far left in front row) with her classmates at their last reunion.

Once Reggie returned to Orange County, she immediately began contacting her Colonist classmates and helped organize several reunions.

“Reggie was a visionary!  She had creative ideas that made it possible for her many friends to have a really good time together, “said classmate Gania Demaree Trotter. “Reggie’s  suggestions were always different and unique! ”

Gania related this story about Reggie: “After the excitement of graduation she topped it all off by proposing she drive six of us to Laguna Beach for an overnight by the ocean.  We spent the entire weekend laughing, swimming, and getting really sunburned! The memory of her inspired leadership and great friendship will remain with us always.”

H.L. Looney – Class of 1942

Kathleen Ann (Sadler) Hanchett – Class of 1977

Hanchett (Sadler), Kathleen Ann – July 3, 1959 – May 27, 2006

Kathleen Ann (Sadler) Hanchett of Vida, Oregon, died May 27 of cancer at age 46.

She was born July 3, 1959, in North Hampton, Mass., to Ernest and Maureen Downey Sadler. She married Jim Pittaway in 1979 in Anaheim, Calif., and they later divorced. She married George Hanchett on Dec. 21, 1989, in Culver. She was a homemaker.

Survivors include her husband; her mother, Sandy Sadler of Anaheim; two sons, Danny Pittaway of Santa Ana, Calif., and David Pittaway of San Clemente, Calif.; four daughters, Sarah Hanchett, Jennifer Hanchett, Christine Hanchett and Scout Hanchett, all of Vida; two sisters, Amy Cummings of Rancho Santa Margarita, Calif., and Faith Jensen of Las Vegas; and a brother, Sean Sadler of Anaheim.

Remembrances to the American Cancer Society.

AHS Class of 1977 In Memory Gallery

Anaheim High Class of 1977 honored fallen classmates at its 40th reunion. The “In Memory” table is shown here, as well as individual photos of the 30 know deceased classmates.

Kathleen Ann (Sadler) Hanchett – Class of 1977

Bud Mahoney – Class of 1941 – Nov. 11, 1923-July 1, 2016

Bud was an officer in the Navy during WWII.

Bud was an officer in the Navy during WWII.

Anaheim High Hall of Famer Arwin “Bud” Mahoney – AUHS Class of 1941, died July 1, 2016 at Marion Hospital, Santa Maria, CA. 

He is survived by his wife Lucille “Lu”; sons, Michael Mahoney, AHS ’65, and Patrick Mahoney, AHS ’69.
He has four grandchildren; Sean Mahoney, Casey Mahoney, Matthew Mahoney, and Lindsey Jameson; and three great grand daughters, Nina and Raina Mahoney and Catherine Lu Jameson.

Bud was born Nov. 11, 1923 in Anaheim, and passed away peacefully July 1, 2016, in Santa Maria. Graveside services will be held at Los Osos Valley Memorial Park, Saturday, July 9, 11 a. m. Bud requested that in lieu of flowers donations be made to
Anaheim High School Alumni Association.

Click here to see photos and read more about this loyalist Colonist.


Gene Menges – Class of 1944

Anaheim High Hall of Famer Howard Eugene “Gene” Menges (pronounced Meng-guess) died June 6 in San Jose at age 90 due to natural causes according to his son, Gregg Menges.

June 6 would be a significant date in his life. He graduated from Anaheim High that day in 1944, which was D-Day for the United States in Normandy, France.

Gene Menges - Class of 1944

Gene Menges – Class of 1944

He and many of his classmates enlisted in the Armed Forces on June 6. Menges joined the Navy and was shipped to the South Pacific. He was a quartermaster third class when he was discharged in 1946.

A Class of 1944 graduate, Menges was one of the most outstanding athletes ever to come out of Anaheim High Schoo. He went on to an accomplished career as a head coach of the San Jose State University baseball team. From 1970 to 1986, Menges became the Spartans’ all-time winningest coach (467-432-4) and was twice named Western Athletic Conference coach of the year. His number 22 is the only number ever retired by San Jose State baseball.

At Anaheim High, Gene was voted CIF Player of the Year in baseball 1944, and was named the most valuable player in varsity baseball, basketball and football as a senior.

For Gene, playing sports came as natural as breathing. It didn’t matter what type of ball was in play, Gene caught it, hit it and threw it with a level of expertise few people reach in a single sport. Later in life, golf became his game and he excelled in this sport as well.

Born in 1926 to Mickey and Florence Menges, Gene said his father played catch with him as often as his job in the oil fields allowed. As soon as he was old enough, Gene began playing on city baseball teams at Pearson Park.

A product of Anaheim schools, Gene attended Horace Mann Elementary and Fremont Junior High before attending Anaheim. His younger siblings Florence and Garth were also students at these schools. To read more about his athletic career, click on this link.