Chapter 5 Registration/Lunch · 5/6/2011

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Chapter 5



Before each celebration Warriors check-in at the Yamato Hospitality Suite where they register, get their name tags and are presented with a welcome gift. This year it was a green Yamato backpack filled with Yamato goodies.

Registration took place in Wally Maroney’s room, which makes it impossible for Wally to sleep late!!   For example, the day I was registering, the bedroom door opened as Wally stepped into the room looking like one looks….after they have partied all night long! The photos of Wally Marony ‘73 and Christopher Pinkava ’73 sprawled out on the floor is testament to this! Wally (like most of us)…..lives for our Yamato reunions. I thought Wally looked too thin this time around and asked, “Wally why are you so thin?” Wally responded, “I was going to my reunion!” Thin or heavier….Wally always looks handsome….

The photos in the video above reveal how much work goes into getting ready for registration. Warriors step in and volunteer their time setting up and unpacking the many boxes. A large jar was displayed for the Yamato donations.  These donations go toward keeping the Yamato Web site and our reunions going….generous Warriors contributed $1300.00 during the 2009 reunion.

At all reunions, you will always find Mary Garrett ’65 volunteering her time at all of our reunions, late night get-togethers etc. Mary is so adorable, with her tiny little figure and charming southern accent. One morning Mary was on her way to registration, when she slipped and fell on the sidewalk. Mary was rushed to the hospital, and went into emergency surgery. Following surgery the Dr. called Mary’s husband, Ronnie, and talked for 30 minutes. After surgery, Mary received many phone calls from Warriors and some visited her in the hospital. This is a perfect example of the love within our Yamato family. In jest, Mary’s son told everyone that his mom was drunk and dancing on a table! Mary responded, “I may try dancing on the table at the next reunion!”

Donna (YHS) Carlini ’73 arrived at this reunion with a cast on her left foot and using crutches, others like me and Amy Tabata’65 brought their canes! I clearly remember that the photo of Cheryl Skipton ’64 & I looking sooo serious….when we were listening to Ted Vallas ‘62 tell us about a former classmate. Mike Ripley '73 is another regular volunteer. Mike (the cane man) designed a cane that is always presented (in jest) to Warriors who are from the earlier classes. Along with many others, you will always find Kay Dawson "68, PatMcGlamory '73, Linda Parrot '75 and Libby Blackstead ‘72 volunteering their time wherever needed. Most of all we appreciate, 'Nancy Houston '71, who does an excellent job coordinating our reunions….no one could do it better.  


In-N-Out Burger 

Cheryl Skipton’s husband, Larry, loves the In-N-Out Burger drive-thru hamburger stand. Whenever they travel, they plan their stops around the In-N-Out Burger. The hamburgers are made from fresh, 100% pure beef, and are free of additives, fillers and preservatives of any kind. 

During the reunion (at Larry's request), Cheryl Skipton ’64 & Larry, Ed DeGenerro ’64 & Charlene, Margo Loe ’64 & Ken Crandall ‘61 & Vonnie Hoops ’60 & Dave, went to the In-N-Out Burger in Vegas. Unbelievably……this was a first-time visit for my Dave. Larry orders the same thing on every visit, the #2 cheeseburger, fries (crispy) and a strawberry shake. He never orders anything else!!!   Larry made this order sound so good, that I ordered the exact same thing. Plus…strawberry shakes are my favorite anyway!   On this day, In-N-Burger was so busy, that we gal’s had to sit at a separate table from the guys. As we were eating, I looked over to the guy’s table, it tickled me to see the contented look on Larry’s face as he took a bite from his cheeseburger.  

After lunch, we gal’s went next door to shop in the In-N-Out Burger store. On our way to the store, we passed right by our husband’s….and they didn’t even see us go by. When we finished shopping, we found the guys standing around by their cars….completely puzzled. They said they looked all over, and even went into the store to look for us. What happened to the days when they couldn’t keep their eyes off of us!   When I saw Ken Crandall ‘61 , leaning (like a Yamato teenager) against the light post, I couldn’t resist taking a photo. Margo & Ken met at Yamato, and are still “madly in love” today. 



Receiving our Yamato welcome gift every two years is always fun to receive.  

One day while shopping in the gift shop, Cheryl Skipton ‘64 and I were standing before a glassed (locked) case full of beautiful items. Cheryl pointed to a large selection of compact mirrors with black & white face images and said, “That one reminds me of you!” I pointed to another compact and responded, “I like that one!” Since I just purchased a purse (which I still use today) I decided against purchasing it. During the dinner/dance Cheryl & Larry presented me with my favorite compact displayed in the glass case. I almost cried with delight…..and now whenever I pull out my compact I wave it back & forth and say, “Isn’t my compact beautiful!” 

Other special gifts I received (on video),  a “Sixties Style” book filled with photos of the 60’s era, from Nancy Houston ’71, A Yamato memorial patch from Ron Childers ’62, and a black denim bag from Kay Dawson '68. People always say to me, “Vonnie, I hope you are appreciated.” The things I do for my alumni, I do out of love…..not for recognition. However, appreciation expressed by our alumni for the time I spend on our Yamato projects is never ending…..  



Other Warriors slipped away into small groups to visit the Vegas Strip, share meals together, etc. So….what brings Warriors from across the states and overseas to attend our reunions every two years? Perhaps it’s the bond we formed as teenagers that draws us back together again. Or perhaps, it’s the fate of military brats…..all grown up now and searching for their roots. Maybe the answer is only time…..

Please send me any changes or corrections at: [email protected] 


Only Time


Who can say where the road goes

Where the day flows, only time

And who can say if your love grows

As your heart chose, only time




Who can say why your heart sighs

As your love flies, only time

And who can say why your heart cries

When your love lies, only time




Who can say when the roads meet

That love might be in your heart

And who can say when the day sleeps

If the night keeps all your heart

 Night keeps all your heart




Who can say if your love grows

As your heart chose

- Only time

And who can say where the road goes

Where the day flows, only time

 Who knows? Only time

Who knows? Only time



Music:  Eithne N? Bhraon?in  -  Lyrics:  Roma Ryan 




Vonnie (Hoops-Vizcarra) Beattie


Class of 1960

 Yamato High School

 Air Force Japan Dependents School

Yamato Air Station, Japan


  " Vonnie’s World”


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