Thursday, February 7, 2013

"Who The Heck Am I?!..."

With the blessing of Cal Porter, we've been tasked with the challenge and opportunity to feature one of our legendary lifeguards in a blog post along the lines of Cal's "Who Am I?" series.  So here goes...

"Who The Heck Am I?!"...

Legend has it that this (now retired) LACo Recurrent (and later Permanent) ruled the Ocean Lifeguard Ironman competitions in the mid '60's.  It was either Ron Crawford or Dick Douglas that told me that one time but I forget which of them said it.

In any case, this young stud LACo beach lifeguard lived with Bruce (Kris) Kjeldsen and Larry Loganbill in 1966 in Sunset Beach, during his last year at Long Beach State.

Zuma HQ, circa 1960's, per Cal Porter.  This is a print from a painting by Vi Allen.
Bob Burnside owns the original painting.  This print is courtesy of our mystery lifeguard.

About the wild west summers of the 1960's at Zuma, we heard from veteran LACo Recurrent (Ret.), Jim Graham, who reminisced as follows about the 1962 LACo Rookie Swim: "I finished 4th in the County exam behind Cappy Sheeley, ___________ (our featured mystery lifeguard) and Ron Crawford and just in front of Dick Douglas, Larry Loganbill and Doyle.  Good crew and most all of us went to work at Zuma and joined up with the likes of Bob Burnside, Howard Lee, Bob Hughes, Tom Landis, Garr Steiner, Kemp Aaberg, Sheridan Byerly, etc.  (We won the Taplin that year and a few intercrews before I moved down to the South Bay after the '66 season to finish out my 25 year career). Great times, great friends, great adventures and great memories."

Well, you all know now we aren't talking about Graham or Loganbill, so we might as well quote Larry too.  Here are several remarks by Larry Loganbill discussing the difference between the 1962 rookie swim and the recent 2012 rookie swim test in terms of spectators, other related topics and which also include reference to our mystery lifeguard:

"Not one parent, relative or friend standing on the beach at the 1962 rookie swim... Roy Saari (future world record holder) watched some of the races on the last Sunday of training and competition because he was going to be taking the test the next year.   Gary Crum at 15 years old swam some of the events preparing for when he turned 18.

Of course, in those days training started immediately after you dried off from the qualifying swim.  Cappy Sheeley from Punahou was No. 1...  ______________  (our mystery guard) was No. 2.  Cappy says (our mystery guard) should have won the swim but Cappy kept stopping him to ask him where the buoy at the breakwater was located. I don't remember any other (future) permanents out of that rookie school except for (our mystery guard).   Three guys from rookie school totally disappeared off the radar screen... didn't take a schedule and were never heard from again.  Most everyone of our 20-man rookie school was sent to Zuma... I think I was the only illegal UNDERAGE LACo pool lifeguard who took the beach test... don't tell anyone.   Starting pay in 1962:   $2.89 per hour."

We have also been informed that this mystery lifeguard attended El Segundo High School where he excelled at both swimming and water polo.  In swimming, our mystery lifeguard was a great butterflyer and 400 IM and distance freestyler.

That's it. That's all the clues you'all are going to get!  And Loganbill and the rest of the Rookie Class of 1962 are NOT eligible for this contest because of their "insider knowledge".

And while we have a great photo of this mystery lifeguard from "back in the day"... we are keeping it to ourselves for the time being because otherwise it would give the identity of our mystery lifeguard away. 

("Who The Heck Am I?!...", Copyright Will Maguire 2013. All Rights Reserved.)


Until next time.....

"County Recurrent" News

Service • Training • Commitment

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Nick said...

The stud was Tom Viren!!!!!

Surfwriter said...

If that ain't Baby Dave Rochlen I'll eat my toes.

William Maguire said...

Dear Surfwriter:

Break out the salsa or mustard and starting eating because the answer is just above your comment. Sorry. :-)