Growing Up

I was born in Lynnwood, California in 1959 to Robert and Joyce Lance who married in 1950. At that time I had an older sister, Cheri born on Coronado Island, CA and a bit later a younger sister, Julie who was born in Phoenix, AZ in 1960.

I don’t remember much about living in Lynnwood or Phoenix, but do remember living on 22723 Chase Place in Canoga Park when I was about 5 or 6 years of age. I remember walking to Nevada Avenue Elementary through a wheat field which had a path which was a short cut to the school. Our neighbors were the LaRosa’s, I remember their daughter Lucia, who was a bit older then I was. My father worked at the TRW (Thompson Ramo Wooldridge), later Bunker-Ramo offices that was just over our backyard fence through a park, which is long gone and homes now. I remember bordering the Bunker-Ramo offices was rock landscaping that I use to catch lizards.

We then moved not too far to 22012 Bryant Street. I remember having my 7th birthday there. This was a great home having a pool sure helped. A few years later a family named Poteet’s moved in. Robert and Waneta have two children, Vickie and Mike. Our family’s grew very close over the next few years and we ended up riding and even racing motorcycle for many years with the Poteets. Later after the Poteet’s moved, another family moved in, the Baca’s, Paul Baca the oldest son with whom we became best friends. Paul had two brothers, Arthur and Gilbert and also a sister but I don’t remember her name. Some other friends I remember from that area were Steve Baker and Mark Gibson. Also Richard C. Vartian who lived across the the street at 8534 Topanga Canyon Blvd. I believe his brothers name was Ronald and his mother was named Gloria. His father Richard John Vartian died on November 22, 2012, in Chatsworth, California, when he was 91 years old. After graduating from elementary school, my parents sent me to what was at the time a private boys school, Chaminade College Preparatory – Middle School in Chatsworth, CA.

After graduating from Chaminade I went to Chatsworth High School where in the eleventh grade I took the GED exam and then soon afterwards joined the Navy. The issue was I was so bored at Chatsworth High School due to the fact that I had learned at a much high level at Chaminade, I ended up taking shop classes and skipping classes. The GED was for me very easy and I attribute that to the advance learning at Chaminade. As much as I didn’t like being at Chaminade I did learn so much. I remember my Mom car pooled with a few other families.

Bunker-Ramo Newsletter Feb 1964