Just finished speaking with LAFD Handball commissioner Roy Harvey and I good-naturedly chided him for omitting my picture from the LAFD Invitational tournament winners. This would have been my first pic back in the Grapevine since I retired in 2010. He said he submitted our pic but that the editor omitted it. Why? Hmmm, well, as we used to say in the Engine house, “You owe me one.”
On a funny note, I was bragging to my brothers who are still on the job that I was getting a handball pic in the Grapevine and one of them bet me that they wouldn’t publish it – meaning the article. Well, I bet him dinner, and since my pic wasn’t there, I lost a dinner bet. It cost me too! LOL!
Remember, you owe me one!
Robert “Bobby” Raya, LAFD retired
La Mirada, CA
Sorry about that Bobby – (photo of Bobby is on the print/e-reader version) – hope you can get that dinner back!
On January 31, 2013 my father, (retired Captain Warren J. McAndrews LAFD) passed away at 91 years old after a very short illness. My mother Grace, Warren’s wife of 62 years has continued to subscribe to the Grapevine, which she in turn gives to me her son, which I in turn give to my oldest son, a fireman with Stanislaus Consolidated Fire in Central CA. I was so pleasantly surprised to find on the last page of the October issue a picture from the past from 1942 which was of my Grandfather Michael McAndrews who was also retired as a captain from the Los Angeles Fire Department. I recognized his picture before I read the name. It literally made mine and my Mom’s day.
Thank you, we could have missed seeing it but fortunately we did see it and it gave us fond memories of my grandfather and my father.
Gary W. McAndrews
son and grandson of retired LA City Firemen
Dear Widows, Orphans and Disabled Firemen’s Fund:
Please accept this donation in memory of Edwin W. Tappert, Wallace Dugan and William L. Yanez, all three of which I worked with in the early years of my career on the LAFD.
Ed Tappert was the pump engineer on Engine 14-C , my first assignment. This was in the mid-1968 when 14’s was an engine only station, although in addition to the two piece engine it housed a foam carrier (the old protein foam that was mixed in a hopper) and an old American La France water tower. I remember Ed only as a quiet guy who always got us water (which was a frequent occurrence in those days). The other members on that shift were Capt. Charlie Porter, Eng. Bill Pierce, Fireman Jim O’Neil (later an A/C) and Fireman Dennis Gelbman.
Bill Yanez was my relief on Truck 4 when we were both young auto firemen. I believe he was on the “A,” Bill Carter was on the “B,” and I was on the “C.” Task Force 4 didn’t go to a lot of fires in our district in those days, but we were a “move up company” and went all over the city and did manage to get into a lot of greater alarms and some major emergencies. Some that I remember were the Occidental Tower, a studio fire in Hollywood and the Sansinena tanker ship.
Wally Dugan was the TFC on the “B” shift at old 29’s for awhile during the late 70’s or very early 80’s. I remember one day I was working on the “B” and it was hose testing time. Old 29’s didn’t have much room, so we were in the side parking lot and it was a warm day. Tom Baracat, who was the Leslie Uniform guy at the time, came by and was talking to someone in the yard when a “localized rain shower” occurred. It was mostly directed at me on one side and Joe Longan on the other, however, as luck (mostly bad) would have it, it parted what little hair Tom had. I distinctly remember steam coming out of his ears as he made a beeline for the captain’s office upstairs. I have no idea what the conversation was like up in the office, but Wally somehow smoothed it over and we got back to our hose change. Now I just have to wait for the one bucket thrower that is still on the job to have a retirement dinner so I can tell the story.
Richard Watters, LAFD retired
Agoura Hills, CA
Thanks so much for handling the replacement of my Dad’s memorial flag and case. It and many other cherished belongings were destroyed, along with Mom’s home in Lake Hughes during the “Powerhouse” fire earlier this year. As always, the Relief Association was there for our fire department family. Dad, the first of three generations of Los Angeles firemen, was proud of his service and instilled a strong work ethic in his sons and grandsons. Please accept the enclosed donation to the Widows, Orphans and Disabled Firemen’s Fund in memory of John E. Stilson, captain retired.
Mike, Judy, Mary (mom) and family
To the members of the Relief Association,
I received your gift today and was totally surprised. It is just beautiful. The “letter’ – well, I can’t express how emotionally it affected me. Thank you all for both.
And I want to thank all of the personnel of the fire department, Relief Association, Credit Union and all I’ve missed. Everyone has helped me so much to try easing this “time” for me.
Thank you sincerely and God bless all of you!
Betty Young and family
(Photo is on print/e-reader version)
Recognized the guy in the 2nd row, left to right, 6th guy with the red sweater, silver hair and big grin as my Dad, Walt Brey, retired Arson Investigation Unit. Class of ’47, LA Fire Academy. He is now 95 years young and still moving forward.
Hope this helps.
Robert Vanderhagen is the 2nd man from the left that is standing. He resides in Oceanside CA.
Oak Park, CA
Fifth guy from right standing is Bob Henderson. Bob and his wife, Noreen, were close friends of my parents.
Linda Malcolm Wood
September Grapevine retired guys San Diego County/South Orange County Breakfast Club. Back row, 2nd from left is Raymond Abernathey
Fountain Valley, CA
That’s my good friend Rick Ortiz sitting in the front row, second from the right in the red sweater. He’s the coordinator of the breakfast which is still going strong today.
October Issue Corrections
• Secretary’s Message: ABC Caskets provides LAFRA members with a 5% discount – which is about 75% off the mortuary price.
• Retirement Dinner Planning Guide: The correct number for LAFRA Member Services is (323) 259-5259