On August 13, 2016, about a hundred former students joined us for the Beaverton High and Garden Home School Reunion on a lovely summer day, outside, under the covered play area at the old Garden Home school, now the The Garden Home Recreation Center. Thanks to the following alumnae for their memoirs of their school days.
The oral histories below were collected by Janice Logan and Patsy VandeVenter.
Judy Arndt Wise
I went to Garden Home School from 1st through 6th grade, Whitford from 7th through 9th grade, and Beaverton High School for sophomore, junior and senior years, graduating in 1971. Our house was located east of the grocery store, where the Cedar Lane apartments are now. There wasn’t a light at the intersection of Garden Home and Oleson Road, they put in the light in 1972. My father did a massive amount of aerial photography of the area, as well as many small towns in the Willamette Valley.
My favorite teachers were Mrs. Miles in 2nd grade, Mrs. Harris in 3rd grade, and Mrs. Beamon in 6th grade. I was a campfire girl.
I am now a guitar player with a few CD’s out. I spend time doing handmade crafts and travel to California in the winter to sing in many church choirs.
I went to Beaverton High School from 1956 to 1960. I took a business class from Mr. Boyce in high school, and I was hired by the Albertsons store on Shattuck and Beaverton Hillsdale Highway, I think due to the fact that I had taken Mr. Boyce’s business class. I remember the Sock Hops at school, and the Pep Rallies. Ted Wilson was the Basketball coach. I remember taking an activity bus to the different games – Hillsboro, Jefferson and Milwaukie. Beaverton was the only High School in the district at that time. My uncle, George Richard Himes was in the 1st grade at Garden Home Elementary in 1916. He lived on 74th, where the Dugout is now, and Louis Heffler lived across the street.
[Editor: read more about Mary Helen Himes Koeber, from a distinguished early pioneer family.]
I graduated in 1954 from Garden Home Grade School. Our family moved here in 1943 and we lived on the other side of the Shell station in a small brown house, for which they paid $5,200. My mother worked at Garden Home School, in the cafeteria, part time, before I started first grade, and I would come into the school with her because they didn’t have child care then. My brother was 3 years older. We went all the way through grade school and high school together. In 2004 we had a reunion for the Garden Home Elementary class of 1954. There were 30 kids in the class and 22 showed up. 28 were contacted and only one had passed away. Beaverton High School had a class of 300 and a couple of dozen of us meet up every 3 months. I currently live in Woodburn and am self-employed. In 1999 the previous owner of our property built a duplex and painted it red and white. He bought it, rented it out, redid it, and just moved out last year.
[Editor: read about Bob in our story about the veterans of Garden Home.]
Barbara Stephens Burke GHS class of 1962, BHS class of 1966
One of my favorite memories of Garden Home was that a friend and I would pick the neighbors daffodils, and set up a tent where the Dairy Queen is now and sell those daffodils. I graduated from Garden Home Elementary in 1962. The teachers I remember the most were Mrs. Pearson and Mrs. Malicoat. Garden Home was so rural then and it felt strange to be thrust into the relatively huge Beaverton High School.
Kenneth Praml O’Connor GHS 1969–1975, BHS 1978–1981
I went to Garden Home Elementary from 1969 to 1975. I loved recess…it was so much fun to throw the football. Mr. Pierce could throw the football clear across the field which was very impressive. I think he raised golden retrievers. The playground was lots of fun. There was a merry-go-round, swings, slide, and we played Tetherball and Four Square on the asphalt portion of the playground. It was fun to run around the playground at recess. We couldn’t go into the woods. However when we were getting ready for Outdoor School, our teacher took the class into the woods to teach us about plants and trees.
I remember Mrs. Miller from 4th grade – she was such a good teacher. Mrs. Sorbitz taught oceanography.
I got to be a crossing guard for the Garden Home Rd and Oleson intersection. There weren’t stop lights then so it was a big deal to walk into the intersection and hold out the flag to stop traffic. I felt very powerful. We met in the basement to collect the flags (don’t remember if we had safety vests or not). It was also a big deal to get out of school early to be the crossing guard.
During lunch I passed out the milk cartons. I still remember the smell – some of the cartons leaked. The food was good; no complaints there.
In 5th and 6th grades I took music classes, where we learned about music and composers – I liked those classes.
The first grade classrooms were at the beginning of the hallway and the higher grades were at the end of the hallway. As younger students, we were afraid to go to the end of the hallway ‘cause we didn’t want to meet up with the older kids. But as we moved through the grades we felt very proud to be in classrooms towards the end of the hallway.
I went to Beaverton High School from 1978 – 1981. I played drums in the band at Beaverton High School – we marched at the football games and marched in the Rose Festival Grand Floral Parade. Mr. Schultz was the band teacher who played trombone. I think he gave up a professional trombone career to teach high school music.
Ed Busch GHS 1950–1954, BHS 1954–1958
I graduated from Garden Home Elementary in 1954, then Beaverton High School in 1958. My family owned the grocery store on the corner of Hall Blvd. and Oleson Road. It was built in 1941 and sold in 1958. I remember all the dairies and the store, and the old Post Office and Cannery in Garden Home. I played clarinet in the high school band, and had Robertson as a band teacher. I also played in two dance bands, the marching band, and the orchestra. I was going to work for the government on a survey crew, but was drafted into the army. I played in the army band for 2 years in Korea. My career was in construction, surveying and carpentry work.
Karen Poutala GHS class of 1954, BHS class of 1958
I graduated from Garden Home Elementary in 1954, and Beaverton High School in 1958. In 1958 I was in Bill Logan’s economics class, in the first row in front of his desk. I fell asleep. Mr. Logan had everyone in the class pointing at me when I woke up. I went to a meeting in the early ‘80’s and “Wild Bill” was there. He came up to me and said “Karen Poutala, I remember you!”
Jean Flowers Stevens GHS 1949–1957, BHS 1957–1961
GHS 1949 – 1957: I grew up on 76th behind the school playground. I was the lunch account girl and every day I got out of class to go to each classroom and get head count for hot lunches and milk. Then I took them to Principal Wayne Thurman’s office. Garden Home was an eight year school then.
BHS 1957 – 1961: I went to BHS and met my high school sweetheart Mike Stevens. We were married 45 years. He passed 6 years ago (2010).
Lynn Flowers Banta GHS 1954–1962
GHS 1954 – 1962: We walked thru the woods from our house to school when the weather was nice. Otherwise if the path was muddy we took the street. We had horses which were old nags but we loved them – they were the greatest horses. I loved Miss Proffitt, don’t remember if she was 1st, 2nd or 3rd grade teacher. Mr Wakefield was a favorite teacher who taught 8th grade. My family moved to the Park Rose area after 8th grade.
This was the most wonderful place to grow up…we weren’t afraid of anything. On Halloween we took a pillow slip to collect candy and walked to the Flemings House then we would call our parents to come get me and my sister and take us home.
My oldest sister Ann Flowers was married and expecting a baby. When I was in 7th grade we were having a school dance; I remember the name of the dance–April Rain. Our principal, Mr. Gustafson, played the records. I saw my dad in the doorway coming to talk to Mr. Gustafson. He stopped the record to announce that “Lynn Flowers is an Aunt and has a little niece”. Everyone clapped and I was very popular the next day as I was the only student to have much older siblings.
Dorothy Frazer Jones GHS 1939–1944
I went to Garden Home School through the 5th grade. We lived on Orchard Lane. I remember running around in the fields, playing in the woods, and playing soft ball. Our neighbors had goats below where I lived. Neighborhood was full of fields and we travelled all over. We didn’t have to worry about crime. My sister, Jean, graduated from GHS. I now live in Gresham.
Katy Grant Hanson GHS 1944–1952
My dad, Paul Grant, graduated from GHS in the class of 1926.
GHS 1944 to 1952: In grade school fairly often the teacher would write on my report card, “Katy likes to look out the window too much”. Now I’m an artist! I grew up on Hunt Club Lane and everything about living in Garden Home seemed wonderful. I remember sitting in class with wet feet from walking to school in the rain. I still have Garden Home friends. My dad always loved Garden Home…we had 3 acres on Hunt Club Lane and he built a house.
Cindy Classen Durham GHS 1964-1970, BHS class of 1976
My dad was a machinist and worked on old cars (rebuilding engines) which started out as a hobby. He owned several old cars – T-Bird,’36 Packard. He rebuilt engines for cars that were displayed in the Concourse car show in Hillsboro. After retirement my parents toured all over with their old cars.
GHS 1964-1970: We came out the back door and down fire escape to get to playground. Boys would run down the stairs ahead of the girls and stand underneath to look up our dresses. But we fooled them and wore shorts under our dresses! I remember twirling around on the bars on the playground. The girls played house in the woods and we collected tree boughs to sweep the dirt. Fifth grade Science classes were so fun, we got to play with microscopes and onions.
Mrs. Harris was my 3rd grade teacher the year my sister was born and I got to stand up on the table and announce her arrival. All the girls thought Mr. Mattson was so cute.
In 6th grade, Outdoor School was a whole week. Two days before coming home, I broke my collar bone doing the wheel barrow race. I had to wear a brace and got special treatment– got to sleep in. When we got home, I received lots of attention when I got off the bus.
Garden Home School went to 6th grade, then I went to Whitford and to BHS class of 1976.
Dick Harbert GHS 1951-1959, BHS 1960-1963
GHS 2nd thru 8th grades: I remember kissing a girl in the woods. My step-father Frank Honey did the structural engineering on cafeteria and administrative office addition in about 1956-57.
BHS class of ‘63.