Welcome to Siggy Raider

Index to Photos

Link to the "Little Brother" of this website, Siggy Raider 2, launched Feb. 1, 2006, with updated information


The Siggy Raider is an unofficial and decidedly unauthorized Internet newsletter for the alumni of Alpha Sigma Phi's Gamma Nu
Buzz Nolan (left) and Gary Toombs with Little Sisters, 1963
Click Colored Type to Enlarge Photo
Chapter at Sacramento State College (Now California State University - Sacramento). Information presented here is based on reports from persons who are generally considered to be reliable when sober, a tremendous advancement from their college days.


About This Website


This site is a work under construction. The volume of photos on this page makes loading somewhat slow, so please be patient. It was launched August 27, 2004 (and re-updated with new material and corrections July 18, 2005), to support the efforts made by a group of Alpha Sig alumni to plan and organize a "Sig Bust Reunion" April 1-2, 2005. Lewis "Buzz" Nolan, Webmaster du jour until such time that another brother should volunteer to take on the duty, temporarily hosts the Siggy Raider site at an ATT WorldNet home page he developed. Due to the time gap between some reports and publication, there can be no guarantee of timeliness or absolute accuracy. Buzz can only promise that the Siggy Raider aims to celebrate the enduring bonds of friendship and fond memories of good times together at a great fraternity. Please send additions, corrections and information on the whereabouts and activities of alumni to Buzz for future posting in the Siggy Raider. Photos are welcome. His email is lewis_nolan@yahoo.com. Snail mail address is 196 North Highland, Memphis, TN 38111. Telephone is 901-327-8845.


Aftershocks from Sig Bust, a "Huge Success"


Nearly 100 persons gathered at Joe Mehrten's ranch for the Sig Bust Reunion Picnic April 2, 2005. There were about 80 present for the dinner the previous night at a nearby winery. The overwhelming concensus was that everything was close to perfect. Weather was delightfully obliging, with mostly clear skies and highs in the upper 60s. The food at both the dinner (Thai-inspired cooking served in an open air plaza at Vino Piazza in Lockeford, CA) and picnic (barbequed tri-tip, baked beans, salad and a "sex in a pan" dessert beautifully served at Mehrten's Ranch near Clements, CA) was outstanding. Wine tasting was available at the dinner and several cases of wine, beer and soft drinks were served at the picnic - but unlike at Sig Busts of four decades ago, nary a Brother showed signs of excess alchohol consumption.

The main event was catching up and sharing stories. Some of the Brothers hadn't seen one another in 40 or more years. There were outbreaks of mirth popping off like fireworks at both occasions as the brothers recalled great memories of good times long ago in Gamma Nu Chapter, Alpha Sigma Phi at Sacramento State. Displays of fraternity memorabilia, including college yearbooks, pledge paddles, drinking mugs, old photos and other material captured a lot of interest from the Alpha Sigs and their spouses/guests.

A companion website at http://photos.yahoo.com/siggy_raider has been established to house the about 400 photos taken by Truman Holtzclaw, Buzz Nolan and Jack Schafer of the Sig Bust events. To access click

Sig Bust Photo Albums

Here are a few comments made after the twin events; additional comments are welcome and should be sent to Buzz.

"What a great two days of sharing memories and talking to Brothers I haven't seen for many years. We really were a great group of guys and continue to be. Those that had thought about coming and for whatever reason couldn't make it missed an award-winning time. The planners deserve our heartfelt thanks." - From Ron Wudel of Gold River, CA, who attended with his wife, Mary. He is retired from Blue Cross-Blue Shield.

"Many thanks to all the Brothers for making the Sig Bust 2005 a success, especially to all who helped plan the event. I especially thank Joe and Ann for their hospitality. Thanks also to Rimas for taking his time and expense in silk screening our shirts. I assume that no one took him up on his offer to silk screen their car doors. I think Paschal Monk would have really been proud of us all. I've always held fond memories of my days in the fraternity, not the least of which is the duet of Skip and Milt playing Moon River on duck calls. What a classic. Thanks all." - From Jim Cook of Sacramento, who attended with his wife, Zoe.

"Thank you for helping make Saturday's Sig Bust a great success. Your web site was instrumental in generating the excitement to bring us all together again. It was truly nice to see everyone again after all the years. Joe's ranch is as beautiful as I remember from 40 years ago." - From George and Joyce Max of Davis, CA.

"Great to see you and everyone else. Rebecca and I enjoyed the day. I have my photos out being processed (prints and CD). Will edit and provide you with a CD. I think Truman will do the same. (note: pix from both are posted on a companion website at http://photos.yahoo.com/siggy_raider). If you did not pick up one of Tom's DVDs, get one from him. He did a very nice job on it. You will enjoy seeing it. " - From Jack Schafer of Fair Oaks, CA.

"I just mailed off the third bunch of DVDs. There were 23 that wanted one. I then mailed off 24 other ones to people I thought would want one (including some who did not attend the reunion. If anyone else who did not get one should want it, I can still burn one and mail it." From Tommy Morris who lives in Ventura, CA with wife Barbara. Tommy produced the hour-long DVD media presentation made using Photodex's ProShow Gold. The DVD has seven separate shows: four separate school calendar years (1959-60 through 62-63); 1963-65; We Have Changed (now and then); Tribute to Fred Lizalde. "The pictures were scanned from Barbara's four Sac State yearbooks; my black and white photos; my digital photos; from Sharon Howell's photos; and from Buzz's Siggy Raider Website." One of Tommy's hobbies is making digitalized slide shows using his computer training and photography skills. His costs for making the CD available is $2 to cover postage and materials. (Buzz Nolan has reviewed the DVD and reports, "This is fabulous. It reminds me of a PowerPoint presentation on steroids - complete with music of the times, fancy graphics, special effects that move around and wisecracking narration. There are many dozens of great pictures of the Brothers and Little Sisters that include a lot of sports and team shots with individuals identified by name." Viewing requires either a DVD player (a $25 disk-playing device that is hooked to your TV for showing movie rentals) or a DVD drive on a late model computer. Contact Tommy at 805-647-2977 for more information.)

"Great Reunion! My wife Sandy and I had a wonderful time attending the reunion. Your web site helped to make it a big big success! "Thank you!" I went through and labeled the reunion images. We ended up with about 356 good images. I sized them 5 inches X 7 inches at 300 dpi. Any body who wants can have a high quality print made up to 10 X 15 inches without any problems. There are two CD disks, one for Friday (176 images) & one for Saturday (180 Images). You can tell everybody that I will mail them the two CD's for $5.00. That will cover my expenses. Thanks again for all of your time." -From Truman Holzclaw of Fair Oaks, CA. These CDs can be played as slide shows on just about any computer that has a CD drive. Contact Truman at 916-966-2917 for more information about this fantastic opportunity to have copies of his expert event photos that can be copied for about 30 cents each at camera shops and such processing centers as Walgreens.

"The Sig Bust went very well and everybody seemed to enjoy it a lot. I know we did. Several of us are talking about doing another one in three or so years." - From Gary Bramon, who with wife Toni played a major role in organizing the event. They live in Novato, CA, where he is a financial planner with a regional and national clientele.

"Thanks for the great picture of Linda and me. Our reunion was just outstanding and we enjoyed every minute. It's hard to believe a life time has passed since we saw most of the brothers. But time waits for one one." - From John Alexander, who lives in Atascadero, CA, with wife Linda. He is a Brigadier General and Assistant Adjutant General of the California National Guard.

"Thanks for the up date of Sig Bust. I came late and had dinner and was at the Saturday meeting. I did pay and since I do not appear on the list of attendees thought maybe I was invisible. Hope not.

"I had a wonderful time meeting with all the brothers that I have not seen for many years. One thing that seemed somewhat strange was that after dinner on Friday we all turned in early (At least that seemed to be the case). Then on Saturday the party ended around (sunset). Whow! what a difference from college days. The party would have gone into the early morning hours with everyone complaining that we were out of Beer! Especially, Tim Fitzer, and my mentor Art Derby.

"Although I have kept in contact with several of the brothers over the years It seems that this was the best get together we had since the Sig Busts of OLD when we were all young and full of energy. At least more energy than most brothers showed at this Sig Bust. One exception was Steve Sipes. I want to thank all those who made this the best Sig Bust yet. That includes the wives who did most of the work? According to Gary?

"By the way I have and will be restoring the Pledge Album for my Pledge Class. We pledged in 1963 and became actives in 1964. If any of the pledge members would like to assist, let me know. We have some blank pages. Maybe we could find a few more old pictures to add to the Pledge Album for future events.

"It was really good to see Rimas Visgirda and Dick Hotchkiss, who inspired me to take a Ceramics class my last semester in college. One of the most enjoyable classes ever taken. Just a note to everyone who attended. Lets do it again SOON! As always, Clyde O. West. If you add my name to the list it will make 100 present." -
From Clyde O. West, who lives in Sacramento.

There were only a few no-shows from the reservations made for 78 persons for the April 1 Reunion Dinner and for 99 persons for the April 2, 2005 Reunion Sig Bust Picnic. There were others who really wanted to attend, but pre-paid committments like the family trip to Hawaii by Gary and Pam Toombs prevented them from joining in the fun. Several loyal Brothers cited distance, expense and health reasons. Oddly, there were only a very few that basically said, "Drop Dead" for unknown reasons. Regrettably, there are still other Brothers in the "lost" category who could not be located despite Herculean efforts by organizers and the assistance of Sac State.

Virtually all of the following Brothers and their spouses or guests showed up for the listed events. Parenthetical information and comments following several names are from Buzz Nolan, who invites additions and corrections.

>> 1. Bob Baysinger

> 2. Elaine Baysinger

> 3. Gary Bramon (He did much of the heavy lifting in organizing the events and motivating others. He served ably and well as a host and emcee.)

> 4. Toni Bramon (Served as a welcoming hostess and gave out nametags and Gamma Nu alumni rosters that she organized and prepared. She is due much applause.)

> 5. Milt Briggs

> 6. Janet Mahan

> 7. Skip Brown

> 8. JoAnne Brown

> 9. Arnie Carston (Owns a thriving flooring company in the Bay Area.)

> 10. Gayle Carston

> 11. Gary Curtis

> 12. Kathy Curtis

> 13. Art Derby (On the wagon but still a classic. Did not wear white socks).

> 14. Kim Derby

> 15. Jerry Dron

> 16. Sue Dron

> 17. Tim Fitzer (Like Derby, on the wagon but still a classic teller of great stories. Owns an ice business and drives a drop-dead, gorgeous 1957 Chevvy.)

> 18. Sara Fitzer

> 19. George Grossman (Working as an executive at an Arizona bank after 31 years with Ford Motor Co. Credit.)

> 20. Truman Holtzclaw (Photographer par excellance, up at 5 a.m. the next day to process digital shots).

> 21. Sandy Holtzclaw

> 22. Bob Howell

> 23. Kazuko Howell

> 24. Sharon Howell

> 25. John Hunter (Provided many pictures and old SSC yearbook pages for Siggy Raider.

> 26. Sue Hunter

> 27 Jack Jenkins (Served as event co-honcho and dinner emcee with Bramon. Works parttime in administration for community college in Stockton, CA. Travels to watch slugger son Geoff play right field for Milwaukee Brewers.)

> 28. Larry Jenkins (Works as floral designer in San Francisco.)

> 29. Bob Kalis

> 30. Patti Kalis

> 31. Bill Kaslar (As trim as ever, still can wear Alpha Sig blazer, lives in Santa Clara.)

> 32. Mike Levison

> 33. Regina Levison

> 34. Jerry Lucas

> 35. Peggy Lucas

> 36. Dale Mahon (No show).

> 37. Patricia Mahon

> 38. Bob Manassero (Successful insurance broker in Jackson, CA).

> 39. Carolyn Manassero

> 40. John Martinez

> 41. Russ Mentink

> 42. Judy Mentink

> 43. Joe Mehrten (Hobbled around on one crutch due to broken foot.)

> 44. Ann Mehrten

> 45. Sam Miller (Works as electrical engineer parttime designing defense systems and lives in Santa Rosa, CA.)

> 46. Janie Miller

> 47. Tommy Morris (Produced souped up slide show on DVD.)

> 48. Barbara Morris

> 49. Buzz Nolan

> 50. Gary Rempel (Favors Aloha shirts.)

> 51. Teri Rempel

> 52. Ray Rivas

> 53. Mary Rivas

> 54. Dennis Sartini (Retired after over 30 years in education, most recently as superintendent.)

> 55. Jack Schafer

> 56. Steve Sipes (Retired Coast Guard helicopter pilot and stock broker who moved from CA to TX.)

> 57. Kathy Sipes

> 58. Fred Stephenson

> 59. Cathy Stephenson

> 60. Rich Sutton (Harley Davidson motorcyle afficiando who favors Aloha shirts.)

> 61. Jeanne Sutton

> 62. Joe Tankersley

> 63. Tony Thornburg (Plans to take big driving tour of U.S. in a fifth-wheeler camper this summer.)

> 64. Kay Thornburg

> 65. Rod Trotter

> 66. Gary Warddrip (Retired purchasing director for heavy industry.)

> 67. Caron Warddrip

> 68. Clyde O. West

> 69. Roger Withers

> 70. Judith Withers

> 71. Ron Wudel

> 72. Mary Wudel

> 73. Dick Zarzana (Retired Secret Service agent who has his own security firm specializing in plugging leaks for high-tech companies.)

> 74. Marilyn Zarzana


> 1. John Alexander

> 2. Linda Alexander

> 3. Dick Bach

> 4. Dan Barber

> 5. Bob Baysinger

> 6. Elaine Baysinger

> 7. Dick Blanchard

> 8. Hermie Blanchard

> 9. Gary Bramon

> 10. Toni Bramon

> 11. Milt Briggs (Provided music and entertainment.

> 12. Janet Mahan

> 13. Mick Brown

> 14. Skip Brown

> 15. JoAnne Brown

> 16. Arnie Carston

> 17. Gayle Carston

> 18. Jim Cook

> 19. Zoe Cook

> 20. Gary Cranfill

> 21. Mary Ann Howard

> 22. Gary Curtis

> 23. Kathy Curtis

> 24. Art Derby

> 25. Kim Derby

> 26. Jerry Dron

> 27. Sue Dron

> 28. Tim Fitzer (Told a hilarious story about clowning around during a visit to the Fair with Jeff Roberts.)

> 29. Sara Fitzer

> 30. George Grossman

> 31. Gary Hendrickson

> 32. Vicki Hendrickson (Wore Gary's fraternity pin on a charm bracelet.)

> 33. Truman Holtzclaw

> 34. Sandy Holtzclaw

> 35. Dick Hotchkiss (Helped Rimas silk screen logos onto shirts for souvenirs.)

> 36. Bob Howell

> 37. Kazuko Howell

> 38. Sharon Howell

> 39. John Hunter

> 40. Sue Hunter

> 41 Jack Jenkins

> 42. Larry Jenkins

> 43. Bill Kaslar

> 44. Greg Kareofelas

> 45. Joe Latona

> 46. Donna Bailey

> 47. Mike Levison

> 48. Regina Levison

> 49. Jerry Lucas

> 50. Peggy Lucas

> 51. Bob Manassero

> 52. Carolyn Manassero

> 53. George Max

> 54. Joyce Max

> 55. Russ Mentink

> 56. Judy Mentink

> 57. Joe Mehrten

> 58. Ann Mehrten

> 59. Sam Miller

> 60. Janie Miller

> 61. Rudy Montalvo

> 62. Kay Montalvo

> 63. John Moreno (Looks very fit.)

> 64. Chris Moreno

> 65. Tommy Morris

> 66. Barbara Morris

> 67. Buzz Nolan

> 68. Raul Quezada (Flat-bellied professional golfer who has played several senior tour events. Loren Roberts used to work for him.)

> 69. Char Quezada

> 70. Bob Quintella

> 71. Vicki Francisco

> 72. Gary Rempel

> 73. Teri Rempel

> 74. Ray Rivas

> 75. Mary Rivas

> 76. Dennis Sartini

> 77. Jack Schafer

> 78. Rebecca Schafer

> 79. Steve Sipes

> 80. Kathy Sipes

> 81. Jim Sowers

> 82. Karen Sowers

> 83. Fred Stephenson

> 84. Cathy Stephenson

> 85. Rich Sutton

> 86. Jeanne Sutton

> 87. Joe Tankersley

> 88. Tony Thornburg

> 89. Kay Thornburg

> 90. Rod Trotter

> 91. Rimas Visgirda (While others played, he toiled away with silk screen process so dozens of attendees had special logos commemorating the Sig Bust printed on shirts.)

> 92. Gary Warddrip

> 93. Caron Warddrip

> 94. Clyde O. West

> 95. Roger Withers

> 96. Judith Withers

> 97. Ron Wudel

> 98. Mary Wudel

> 99. Dick Zarzana

> 100. Marilyn Zarzana


Exquisite programs emblazed with the Alpha Sig fraternity pin were designed by Jack Schafer and available on tables at the dinner.

Commemorative Alpha Sigma Phi bottles of wine (Chardonnary, White Merlot, Lodi Reisling, Red Dry Zinfandel and Mourvedre Merlot bearing the Alpha Sigma Phi logo) were sold at $12 each by advance purchase. Several Brothers carried cases to their cars.


Sig Bust planners were in 'the groove'

(Following is an email sent by Milt Briggs about the planning meeting for the Sig Bust Reunion. There were 15 Alpha Sigs in attendance at the meeting Jan. 8, 2005, at Joe Mehrten's ranch near Clements, Calif., south of Sacramento. Milt wrote the following.


"We had a great meeting at Joe Mehrten's Ranch last Saturday. There were quite a few brothers there. The meeting was very relaxed with business issues completed amongst memories and stories of the old days. With Joe chairing the meeting, it was just like the groove of the old days. It was really enjoyable. There is something about this Alpha Sig group that remains unusual in terms of affection and acceptance. It "grinned me right down to my toes." Joe and Ann were so great to us, providing lunch and the meeting place. The Sig Bust should be super. Thanks for your work on the website. There was appreciation expressed for what you wrote about Pete Siller. He was quite a well rounded, enthusiastic person no doubt. A loss. Who knows the cost? Whenever I am near the Capitol, I stop by the memorial and find his name." - Brother Milt Briggs, Jan. 15, 2005.

Map spots Mehrten ranch
Click Colored Type to Enlarge Map


For more information about any future Sig Bust events and opportunies to serve on various committees before, during and after the event, please contact Gary Bramon at 269 San Felipe Way, Novato, CA 94945. (415-897-6689).  (Or) Arnie Carston, 139 Alice Street, Santa Rosa, CA 95409 (707-528-2768).


There are several Alpha Sigs who have dropped out of sight. Please click the following link to see the list of MIAs plus some scraps of information on the latest known whereabouts of several others.

List of Missing Brothers


(Note: Contact addresses will not be posted on this website without permission for reasons of privacy and to reduce the risks of spamming. Contact Gary for specifics. The "public"  email address for Siggy Raider Webmaster Lewis Nolan is posted since he believes it is already on every spam list in the world).


Statements -


The following tidbits of news about Alpha Sigs from Sac State come from the named alumni. All alumni are cordially invited to write a few sentences (or as many as you like) about your activities and any old memories you care to share and to send the report to Buzz Nolan for future publication in Siggy Raider.


"Dewey Howell retired as a manager of health and other benefits at
Dewey Howell, wife Debbie, 2002
Click Colored Type to Enlarge Photo
Federal Express' world headquarters in Memphis in late 2003, one of thousands of employees who accepted a buyout/early retirement program. He is living in Collierville, TN, a Memphis suburb, with his wife of 15 years. Dewey has been an active participant in the Masters Swimming program, qualified for and swam in the 2003 Senior Olympics and has kept his weight at a trim 170 pounds for many years. After Sac State, he worked for Allstate in Sacramento, then moved to San Diego, where he was employed by Lone Star Insurance, which later transferred him to the company's headquarters in Dallas. He worked for several insurance concerns in Texas, Indiana and Chicago for some  years and then oversaw the United Methodist Church's health insurance program for ministers from the church office. He accepted a job with FedEx and relocation to Memphis six years ago. With his extensive background and experience in managing health insurance plans for major employers, Dewey recently prepared for and passed an examination that led to his certification as a qualified agent for the sale of health insurance. He is organizing a business that will offer affordable major medical insurance to individuals and families not covered by group policies. He currently is training for the qualifying trials in several swimming events next spring that ramp up to the 2005 Senior Olympics. Dewey's question as a cancer survivor to all brothers is, "Do you know your PSA score?" -
Dewey Howell, Nov. 1, 2004


Lewis "Buzz" Nolan - "I have always treasured my time as an active Alpha Sig. I married the last woman who wore my fraternity pin; we recently celebrated our 36th anniversary. After college graduation and military service, I worked for The Commercial Appeal, a metro newspaper in Memphis owned by Scripps-Howard, as a Bureau Chief, reporter and Business Editor. I joined Schering-Plough Consumer Operations as Vice President of Communications in 1984, leaving in 1996 during a restructuring/downsizing. I then served briefly as Vice President for Communications and Government Relations of Guardsmark, Inc., a national
Buzz Nolan with wife Betty and son Casey, June 2004
Click Colored Type to Enlarge Photo
security services firm based in Memphis. I retired from fulltime work in 1998. If any Alpha Sigs should want to know more about what's been going on in my life, please see my websites. An index to a hobby series of travelogues I've written about our family trips to Ireland, France, England and other places is at nolantravels1/. An index to a family history book that I wrote is at http://lewis_nolan/.home.att.net/ - click the link to the sub page "About the Author" for my biographical summary. A warning: Both websites have lots of vacation photos." - Buzz Nolan, Sept. 12, 2004


Gary Anderson - "Wife Linda and I are living in Stockholm, Sweden while Linda completes a two year executive assignment with IBM. I retired about four years ago when it became apparent that Linda's opportunities could carry us about the country and the world. I'd spent the first part of my career in international merchant banking, then ran two start up tech companies and did venture capital and then formed a mediation and negotiations firm. I had a great time in all of it, as well as raising three great kids. We will be in Stockholm for another year with current plans to return to the US after that. However, a year is a long time in Global Outsourcing and you never know what Linda will be asked to do next or where. She is at a level at which she can largely pick and choose and is then sufficiently pampered to make life quite pleasant. We've kept our home in Ridgefield, Connecticut and recently bought Linda's mother's home in Asheville, North Carolina as a second home. Linda has only five years until retirement and Asheville seems like a good place to use as a base. Besides, it is just an hour north of son Scott and his family. My daughter, Nadean, who was Alpha Sig's Littlest Little Sister as a baby, still lives in Placerville, just above Sacramento. Her oldest daughter Jennifer is just finishing her junior college year semester abroad in New Zealand. It doesn't seem possible that a third generation is enjoying that phase of life that we are so fondly remembering here. However, while starting young, I didn't finish the baby business until my late 30's so have a daughter that has just finished her studies at the University of Washington. We had the whole family in Stockholm for two weeks this summer. The grandkids stayed with us and the kids and spouses decided to stay at a small hotel down the street. Having a house full of five kids 4 through 17 was a tiring, yet great experience.Just wanted to say a quick hello and thanks for your efforts on the home page." - Gary Anderson, Sept. 13, 2004


Gary Warddrip - "I found this picture a couple of months ago. You probably know who these brothers are but just in case you do not, from left to right they are: Dennis Sartini, Sam Miller, Bill Kaslar and Don Covell. I believe they were
(l-t-r) Dennis Sartini, Sam Miller, Bill Kaslar, Don Covell c. 1963
Click Colored Type to Enlarge Photo
singing at a playboy party. Thanks for setting up the website and sending out information. It is a shame we have to get "old" before we start thinking about our college friends. You may know my wife of 39 years is Caron Case, a little sister in 1963-64. We both just retired and are planning to move to Vancouver Washington which is just across the Columbia River from Portland OR. Caron and I send our best wishes to you and your family. Please do stop and see us if you ever come to the beautiful Northwest. We have many Micro Breweries with beer at least as good as Ireland. The Olympia Brewery which brewed one of my college favorites closed a year ago!!!!!!" - Fraternally yours, Gary Warddrip, 2250 River Heights Circle West Linn, OR 97068; 503-657-1540. Sept. 15, 2004.

(Subsequent to the above Statement, Caron was packing for the move and came across the original lyrics of songs she and Little Sister Sally Schock had written about Gamma Nu and performed with other Little Sisters for the brotherhood. It had been typed on old, manual Smith-Carona typewriter. She kindly passed a scanned copy on to Siggy Raider and to Jack Jenkins, the then-president of the Chapter. The following Statement from Caron was in response to a request from Buzz Nolan for her OK to post the song on this website. A copy of the scan may be accessed from a link in the Pages From The Past section toward the bottom of this webpage or directly at Little Sisters Song


Caron (Case) Warddrip - "Of course you can post the songs on the website. I think the scanner cut off the last line of the Jack Jenkins song. The ending should read:

The leaders of the country,
The leaders of the West,
The leaders of the campus,

I think that Sally and I composed these songs together. I haven't been in contact with any of the other Little Sisters since Gary and I got married in 1965. Jack did say that he ran into Sally at something through his school district. We had heard years ago that Sally's husband, Carl Podesta, committed suicide. How sad.

Yes, moving is a BIG pain! We moved six years ago into our current home but we were both working full time and ran out of time to go through everything. We are building a home in Vancouver and moving for tax purposes (no state income tax). Now that we are both retired, that is a large savings for us! We agree that a garage sale is way too much work at this stage of life. Apparently we have the same type of humidity in the NW that you do in Memphis (a reference to a comment from Buzz about
Little Sister Caron Case in 1964 Sac State Yearbook
Click Colored Type to see yearbook page
how the Southern humidity gets in his closet and shrinks the waistline of his clothing so much). We've taken about 15 bags of clothes to Goodwill that have shrunk over the years! I found a suitcase in the back of a closet that was full of size 6 clothes. Of course, the memory gets fuzzy at this age as well, but I didn't think I had worn size 6 since I was age 6!

I also wanted to share a Pete Siller memory with you. What I remember about Pete was that he really had to study hard for his grades. I, too, had to make good use of my time if I was going to carry a full load of classes, work 20 hours a week and still have time to party with the Alpha Sigs. One day I was searching for a place to "hide out" in the library and found the perfect "out of sight" place--a table that could seat 3 in an obscure corner behind several racks of books. I had been studying about 20 minutes when I was joined by Pete. He looked surprised to see me there as this was his "hiding place". We laughed and agreed to only chat for five minutes and then study. My whole last year we met each other frequently in that place and always stuck to our five minute "chat" limit. I've always felt bad that he studied so hard for his degree and never got to use it. Like others, when Gary and I went to Washington D.C., we visited the Memorial and found his name. I remember Pete as a man of integrity and compassion who truly cared about other people.

Gary and I have located our Alpha Sig mugs and plan on bringing them to Sig Bust. What fun it will be to see everybody! Thanks for putting together a great website for us all to take a stroll down Memory Lane." - Little Sister Caron (Case) Warddrip, March 6, 2005



Michael Levison - "My wife Regina and I live in El Dorado, CA outside of Placerville in the beautiful Sierra Foothills. We run a physician recruitment firm. The company has been in existence since 1988 and specializes in placing physicians in California, Oregon, and Washington. We live on 5 acres and run the business from our home. We have recruiters who work for us out of their homes. We love the beauty and serenity of the area. For fun we love to travel. We just got back from a week on the North Carolina Outer Banks. Next week we will be in New England for the Fall Foliage and a trip to Boston for a few days. In fact, Arnie Carston and his wife will be going with us to New England. Arnie and I have remained very close friends through the years. I also have been walking marathons and half-marathons to try and keep in shape. I recently completed the San Francisco half-marathon and will be doing the Sacramento and Phoenix marathons in the next few months. I have a 25 year daughter who owns an equestrian center in Marin County, CA. Attached is a recent photo of my wife and myself. Something must be wrong with the picture because I cannot believe I have so much white hair -- just kidding.
Michael Levison with wife Regina
Click Colored Type to Enlarge Photo
Take care." - Michael Levison, Sept. 17, 2004


Dick Hotchkiss - "A lot of water under the bridge. I plan on attending the Sig bust also. Over the years I drifted away from the contacts of college life. However, Rimas and I have continued to be good friends and have collaborated on many projects . The training ground that was our fraternity allowed me to understand the importance of the group dynamic and in the last 40 years I have often used the skills obtained through that formative time in my life. I think about those kids we all were and wonder how things would be if we hadn't known the cooperation of the house and the joys and traumas that came with it. I was not a politician then and I have not changed. Still a friendly guy with a hand out to assist others, never expecting anything in return. George Schurr was a strange guy. He gave me a place to grow. The House was good. I often mention my fraternity fondness to people who did not have the experience. They can never understand.

"Professionally, I have managed to keep the slate clean throughout the last forty years, never ending up in jail for wrongdoing. I am still in Education, currently working for a Community College in my home town of Grass Valley, California. I do not know how much longer I will continue to do that but certainly for a good bit more. I really like what I do. It has been like being retired for all these years. I never feel the grind of having to go to the job.

"My health has been mostly good and I still maintain my body through regular exercise. I have been married three times. Currently, I am single and have no plans to change that. My only child is now forty one and doing very well in her life. I have one grandchild who is 11 years old. I raise a great garden.

"My computer skills do not extend beyond using the keyboard so I cannot supply you with any visuals. I like to keep it simple. Too much shit in the head makes for sleepless nights." - Dick Hotchkiss, Chicago Park, CA, Sept. 28, 2004

(The following statement and photograph was hijacked from Dick's introduction to the film, "The Climbing Kiln of Woolman Lane," which is posted at the Wood Fire movie website at http://homepage.mac.com/pattyeacobacci/Personal7.html) - "In 1971, my friend and studio partner, Rimas VisGirda, and I designed a six chamber, wood fired, climbing kiln that was subsequently built by the students and instructional staff of the workshop known as "Earth Air Fire Water". That workshop ( 1971-1978) and the kiln that was constructed,
Dick Hotchkiss by massive kiln
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is still a pioneer in the world wide ceramic community. The kiln, sixty feet long and over a thousand cubic feet is not a replica of a Japanese folk kiln, it is truly a product of Yankee ingenuity. An introduction of woodfire techniques from the Earth Air Fire Water experience were featured in slide shows and film presentations at the NCECA conferences in Flagstaff Arizona, Madison Wisconsin, and College Pennsylvania. This exposure sparked the woodfire explosion that has spread to ceramists everywhere. The notoriety for the kiln that caused the stir faded with time but the kiln and it's use did not. For over thirty years this unique facility has continued to be a learning tool to the thousands of minds that have known it's flames. The kiln, still working and producing thousands of objects in a twice a year firing schedule, attracted the attention of Patty Eacobacci, a filmmaker who resides in Nevada County in Northern California. Patty was introduced to the magic of the climbing kiln quite by accident. A friend who knew of her talent as a filmmaker asked her to visit during a firing. Art happens. The vision that was to take Patty on a new journey was that of a person being introduced to a subject that put her in touch with her artistic senses. She began in earnest, first asking permission then moving, shooting, talking, and working around the clock to capture the feeling of an almost "lost art". Her film, "The Climbing Kiln of Woolman Lane" is an artistic vision of the beauty of the process, the people, the intensity, and the products. Patty saw and captured the magic and the innocence of the place, and the dedication of those who have been mystified by this unique experience. I thank her." - Richard Hotchkiss, H and V pottery, Planet Earth


O. Truman Holtzclaw - "Truman was a biology teacher by profession (Retired 6/22/01), a photographer by passion. He blends these activities in his roles as past presidents of the Sacramento Audubon Society and the Sierra Camera Club. He also has worked as a park naturalist for the State of California. After 15 years of serious photography, Truman has acquired and perfected the skills to artfully blend his biology background and his love of nature to create a collection of about 80,000 beautiful images. As his photography reflects, Truman understands how life systems work and interact. He studies wildlife in the great outdoors, and social life in our society at large. His favorite subject matter is nature, but he enjoys most all forms of photography. His photographic activities include attending and presenting workshops, leading field trips, competing in local and international competitions, preparing and presenting multimedia programs, evaluating photographic competitions, leading photo treks, photographing weddings, banquets, professional workshops and sporting events. Travels have taken him to the Amazon, the Andes, the Galapagos Islands, Germany, Switzerland, Austria, Italy, France and England; as well as Canada and the United States including Alaska and Hawaii. Six weeks as an exchange teacher in southern Japan also added to his photographic files.
Truman Holtzclaw
Although his foreign travels were wonderful, his favorite area for photography is still the western United States." (This statement taken from Truman's website at http://abiphotos.com. The site features his photography. Truman and his wife, Sandy, live at 7970 Archer Ave., Fair Oaks, CA 95628. His home telephone is (916) 966-2917; cell is (916) 214-2917). September 25, 2004.


Rimas VisGirda - "I first heard about this website from Hotchkiss, who forwarded an e-mail he got from somebody... so now I see I'm on the website -thanks. Some other news is that we have a Tadas, a 3 yr old, and Jonas, a 7 month old - and that's Yo-nus (not like the guy that got swallowed by the whale -but I think that was Jonah anyway no matter how you look at it, he's gonna have a tougher time with his name than I did... the rest of the family are Benny the dog, Fred the parrot and Fiction and Form the cats. The mother of my children (whose father I am of her children) is Billie Jean Theide and she is Head of Metalsmithing and Jewelry Design in the School of Art and Design at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (main campus). -Phew. I retired from teaching in '96 and now just work in the studio and teach short-term technique workshops at different places around the country -but mostly I take care of Jonas -Tadas goes to school all day. He's a lab rat in the Child development laboratory at the university. If anyone is interested in my work you can type my name into Google and you'll get a couple of pages of things to look at -a lot of the entries are just breezebys but the ones at "CERAMICS TODAY" AND "CERAMICS TECHNICAL" AND "DAILE" could be worth a look. I will try my best to make it to CA for the party at start of April -or is it an April-fools kind of date?? Can you send me Arnie Carston's address and contact info -my Palm died with a bunch of addresses that I lost with it. Any news or knowledge about John Georgakakos?" - Regards, Rimas VisGirda. 2111 Belmont Park Lane, Champaign, IL 61822-9401. Telephone (home) 217-398-1956; (cell) 217-377-7557. Sept. 23, 2004

(The following description of Rimas' world-class ceramic work is from his website at http://www.guild.com/artist/1238.html.) "One of my fundamental beliefs is that experience affects everything one does; sometimes immediately
Rimas Visgirda with sons Tadas (left) and Jonas, 2004
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and sometimes not until years later." In his pottery, Rimas VisGirda outlines sketches with a black engobe, using wax to protect the parts of the pot he doesn’t want to color yet. After the first firing, he applies bright glazes between the lines and refires the piece to bring out the vivid colors. VisGirda's work has changed considerably in the thirty years that he’s been creating pottery. His work has gradually evolved from the simple, functional forms to the sophisticated, whimsical pieces he now produces. Sharp-edged Picasso-like images represent our complex, urbanized world.

SELECTED EXHIBITIONS AND AWARDS: Hyde Art Gallery, El Cajon, CA, 2003; Polish National Museum, Wroclaw, Poland, 2002; The Chicago Athenaeum, Schaumburg, IL, 2002; World Ceramic Center, Ichon, South Korea, 2001: Shanghai, China, 2000: Taipei County Yingko Ceramics Museum, Taipei, Taiwan, 2000; Lithuanian Museum of Art, Chicago, IL, 2000; Solomon Dubnick Gallery, Sacramento, CA, 1999; Tajimi Special Exhibition Hall, Japan, 1998; Images Friedman Gallery, Louisville, KY, 1998.

SELECTED COLLECTIONS: Lithuanian National Museum, Vilnius, Lithuania; Polish National Museum, Wroclaw, Poland; Society For The Promotion Of Culture, Ena-City, Gifu-Pref, Japan; Keramion Museum, Frechen, Germany; Tennessee State Museum, Nashville, TN; Arkansas Art Center, Little Rock, AR; Belgium State Museum, Brussels, Belgium; Georgian State Museum, Tbilisi, Georgian Republic; Loket Museum of Porcelain, Czech Republic; Canadian Clay and Glass Gallery, Ontario, Canada; California State University, Sacramento, CA; Muzeum Walbrzychu, Walbrzych, Poland


Gary Hendrickson - "Yes, I indeed wore Gary's pin at Sac State. We met at the same time as Gary and Pam Toombs. I was in SAS with Pam. Pam has done very well in commercial real estate in Turlock.
Gary Hendrickson with wife Vicki, 2004
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Gary Toombs, of course, worked in administration at Cal State Stanislaus in Turlock. He has retired, and works in real estate some, but also keeps up a wonderful garden! When you go to their home and have dinner, they pick the vegetables while you are there and cook them. We have visited with them off and on over the years. Our kids knew each other fairly well. My Gary and I married a year before we graduated, which cut into fraternity and sorority time that last year. Gary and I have been married for 40 years. We live in Clovis, CA. I work in Fresno and Gary has an office in downtown Clovis. Gary is actually in his second career as well. He owns a Management Recruiters franchise and is a headhunter specializing in high level management positions in the food industry. He started out after college in the retail industry. We are looking forward to seeing everyone in the spring. I think Toni and Gary have our phone number as they called. Our address is 2100 San Gabriel Ave. Clovis, CA 93611." - Sincerely, Vicki "Eickhoff" Hendrickson, Sept. 17, 2004


Jack Schafer - "I pledged Alpha Sig in 1962 and became a brother on 2/9/62, Tim Fitzer was my big brother. Tim Fitzer, Rudy Montalvo, John Moreno, Jerry Dron, and I were transfers from Stockton College, now San Joaquine Delta College to Sacramento State. I was an Art Major at Sac State with an emphasis in Ceramics and Printmaking. I married Ona Winterberger (an SAS little sister) in February of 1963 during my senior year; many of the Alpha Sig brothers attended the wedding and some were part of the wedding party. After my 1963 graduation, I worked as an artist and draftsman for a landscape architectural firm, then went to work for KXTV Channel 10, where I created everything from set design to TV Guide Ads. I left Channel 10 in 1970 and became an Art Director for a small advertising agency, then became the Art Director for El Dorado Hills (owned by John Hancock Insurance company at that time). When the housing
Jack Schafer with wife Rebecca, retrievers
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market took a downturn in 1970, I became a freelance graphic designer. In September of that year I was offered a teaching position at Sutter Middle School which I accepted. As the 1970/71 school year came to a close I was asked to teach ceramics at Del Campo HS where I teach ceramics, photography, and graphic design currently (I concur with Hotchkiss, teaching is like being partially retired, I'm not anxious to leave) I earned an MA in 1972 along with a K12 Credential and a Community College Credential. Teaching has opened many doors and allowed me to study ceramics in a variety of places, including Japan.

"Ona and I have two boys, Joel (40) and Jason (37). Joel owns his own business in Southern California and is known as Mr. BigSquirt. www.bigsquirt.com. He is the father of a girl. Jason lives with his girl friend in the mountains near Chico and has become a goat farmer. Ona and I were divorced in 1977; Ona lives in the Chico area and lost her second husband (a MediVac pilot) in a rescue mission two years ago. I remarried in 1979. On October 3 of this year, Rebecca and I will celebrate 25 years. We live in a 1940's cottage in the rolling, oak studded hills of Fair Oaks, CA. We've been remodeling the old house since 1983 and this year tackled the dining room and kitchen. We've been raising and training Golden Retrievers for a number of years. I was raised in the Sacramento River Delta (Rio Vista); Jerry Dron is from Isleton; Mick and Skip Brown are from Rio Vista as well.

"My agriculture roots are still intact. I own and operate two duck clubs in the Suisun Marsh and function as the president of a reclamation district covering 1200 acres. My interest in history has emerged in two ways I had not expected. I communicate with relatives in the US, Canada, and Germany doing German Russian family research. I'm thankful my great-grandparents made that arduous journey from the Crimea, South Russia in 1876. They could not have known how that immigration would effect so many unborn generations. I also recreate agricultural equipment graphics, sometimes using only photos or a weathered panel from a tractor. I can reconstruct the original graphics, which are then either made into decals or hand painted to the restored equipment. (Details are at http://www.goldenstatefarm.org/1918.html). A restored 1915 Yuba Ball Tread Tractor is on display in the Yuba Memorial Museum, Sutter County and a 1916 Yuba Ball Tread Tractor recently went to a museum in North Carolina. See http://www.steamengine.com.au/events/reports/grass_valley_2002/pics/yuba-bal l-tread-tractor-marysville-ca.jpg). Other work on Caterpillar tractors and the 1918 Samson tractor (from Stockton CA) is ongoing." - Jack Schafer, Sept. 28, 2004.

(Jack earlier sent the following statement regarding some fellow Alpha Sigs). - "Nice to see your effort on behalf of Gamma Nu. Here is a list of brothers I may be able to provide addresses for: Norman "Skip" Brown, Charles "Mick" Brown, Dick Hotchkiss, Rimas VisGirda, Dale Mahon, Truman Holtzclaw and Fred Stevenson; only a few have email addresses that I am aware of. Mick and Skip were both owners of Delta Construction, a family owned company in Sacramento started by their father in 1945. Skip's company is Delta Construction, engineering contractors. Information about the company is at http://www2.cslb.ca.gov/CSLB_LIBRARY/License+Detail.asp?LicNum=00257024. Some years ago, Mick struck out on his own and formed B&B Asphalt. It has been a few years since I've seen Mick, we went fly fishing together, he is as good with a fly as he always was. His business is at 6610 Asher Lane, Sacramento, 95828. The business phone is (916) 383-2888. Fred Stephenson went to law school at UC Berkeley, was admitted to the bar in 1966 and is practicing law in Sacramento. Information about him is at http://members.calbar.ca.gov/search/member_detail.aspx?x=39418. Dale Mahan moved to the family ranch on Grant Line Road, Elk Grove some years ago. We had a Sig Bust or pledge party there when I pledged, 1962. Dale's mom always told me Dale could get lost walking out the back door of the ranch house. I found that to be true as Russ Mentink, Dale, and I became lost in the Sierra Nevada near his grandparents' mountain homestead. We found our way back at 2 am in the morning. A large family search party was out looking for us. Dale is a lawyer. Information about him is at http://pview.findlaw.com/view/2643830_1?noconfirm=0 I've not seen Dick Hotchkiss in a number of years, he still lives in the Chicago Park/Grass Valley foothill area. Dick was an outstanding decathlete at Sac State. I believe he has competed as a senior decathlete as well. I worked with Dick and Rimas VisGirda at one of their month-long pottery workshops at John Woolman School near Grass Valley/Nevada City. I later studied ceramics in Japan, which is what I still teach today. Rimas lives in the East. He is a house dad and his wife is an educator. His website is at http://www.guild.com/artist/1238.html. Your comments about Peter Siller brought back a flood of memory; he was a great guy. I was deeply saddened by his death in VietNam. I remember that one night, Janet Anderson and I drove Peter home from an Alpha Sig party. . . We, one of us on each side of him, carried him into the house and up the stairs to his bedroom and left him in his bed to sleep it off. I am sure the family never knew we had done that, Peter may not have remembered it either." - Jack Schafer, Sept. 19, 2004


Tommy Morris - "Here is a picture of Fred Lizalde dancing with Sharon Howell at Nick Lizalde's wedding in San Diegeo. Nick is the son of Fred and Vivian Lizalde.
Sharon Howell dances with Fred Lizalde
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Also enclosed (and posted on the Photo Gallery page), is a program from Fred's Memorial Service after his death Dec. 18, 2003. Sharon came down from Sacramento and I came over from Ventura. I'm also adding a picture of Barbara watching Dewey Howell play croquet plus several shots of the 1965 Sigbust. For the old timers again, Barbara was in the first group of Little Sisters. I will try and remember to scan some pictures of our wedding (3 Aug 63) which show more Alpha Sigs who were there." - Tommy & Barbara Morris, 102 San Benito Ave., Ventura, CA 93004, Sept. 19, 2004


Gary Rempel - "To the "Raiders of the Night," Here is the fine mess I found myself in after graduation. After law school at McGeorge, I literally got out a map and picked out San Diego for the sailing, beaches and weather. I immediately joined Old Mission Beach Athletic Club. OMBAC is the nation's premier rugby club, and the closest thing I could find to Alpha Sig. Now I live in a heavily-palmed area of northern San Diego County called "Vista." I have a number of small racing dinghies, catamarans, and sailboards that are used too infrequently, but I have never resorted to playing golf. I played a tiny bit of rugby as a scared scrum half; a lot of hoops in about every league in this county; and plenty of city league football and soccer until I blew out a knee, about '92, running for the weekly T-shirt (there was a race or two every week around here). I rarely get to Sacramento, so I have lost touch with most of you. I have some contact with former roommates Rich "Soothe" Sutton and "Rude" Rog Withers, but am curious to hear what Jim Tomasini; Rimas ViGirda; Art Derby; Dick Hotchkiss and other classics did with their lives. I got a little notoriety over the past three + decades as a trial lawyer for the District Attorney, as the dirt bags I prosecuted got headlines and sometimes threatened to kill me. So nothing much has changed about my social behavior since you guys almost voted me out for being behind on dues and orchestrating the First Annual Spring Snack Bar Food Fight, where the Dean of Women, a surly
Crimefighter Gary Rempel
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piece of work, took a juicy slice of blueberry pie on her white wool dress. You will be happy to note I never sucked butt to become a judge or prosecuted anyone who was innocent or a fraternity brother.

"One of my best memories of the Fraternity years was a giant bonfire at the annual Homecoming Rally. At the edge of the inferno was a pseudo- outhouse that was nearly fully engulfed in flames when a drunken Gerry Singer, of Phi Tau, came bounding out of the smoke. That impressed me so much I had a large firepot built near my pool and have re-created that scene -- while sober -- several times, sitting in crappy Adirondack chairs I have ineptly built. So far I have not had to leap in the pool, but I never know if the persons gathered around the fire are cheering for me or the fire, nor is it a given they will let me out. I took the rubber raft drift trip down the river to Sac State every summer for a few years with Rich Sutton and another college roommate, Bill Bonham of Sigma Alpha Everyone, but eventually tired of their attempts to drown me and I got too old to swim after the raft. Thanks to Tomasini and Withers, I learned to cook and, as I look back, their tolerance and patience for my idiotic behavior far exceeded that of my first wife. I am now happily married to Teri, whom you will meet, and we have 5 children.

"A Fraternity House Memory Test: Delta Delta Delta and Kappa Gamma. Okay, now that you are awake and stimulated, how many of you have enough brain cells left to remember the large cockroach that used to walk out to the end of the kitchen faucet and cock his head at us as if to say, "Where's the rent, sucka?" or Derby after (his daily dose of) wine getting "pacified" by Arnie Carston; or the guy (whose name I won’t mention) who kept a cockroach in a jar as a pet, frequently (!) forgot to flush the toilet and, of course, became a psychologist; Sipes as a sadistic Pledge master; Fitzer and Foy being Fitzer and Foy 24/7; or the time the guys from a University of Pacific Animal House Frat came to torch our House with cans of gasoline for an indiscretion we had committed and instead were turned away by a grinning, toothless Dick Hotchkiss holding a .45 and giving them directions to the "Teke" House -- and all the stuff Sutton was constantly doing or the Sacramento City College sorority girls
George Grossman in Chicago, October 2004
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I arranged an Exchange Social with or the junior high band, "The Nightriders" I got to play for tips and you guys were so cheap they only made about six dollars and beer? If those are the highlights, this is going to be some male bonding Reunion and I'm coming armed . . . See you there." - Gary "Quill" Rempel, Social Chairman '66, Sept. 28, 2004


George Grossman - "It was great getting the e-mails about the Old Gal and the upcoming Sig Bust -- put me down for attending this great reunion. To update my information, my address is: 4903 E. Harmony Ave., Mesa, AZ 85206. Home # is 480-985-2575. My wife, Bev, and I have lived in the great parched southwest for the past 6 years, coming here from Detroit, MI and previous to that -- stops in Chicago, Rock Island and 3 years in Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada. We are going to Chicago in 2 weeks for a wedding and will have a picture taken, suitable for placing on the website. (Following message was received two weeks later). Look forward to getting more information about the Sigbust and those who will be attending. At last I have a fairly decent picture to send - at least one fit to print in such a fine publication as the Siggy Raider - My wife and I were in the Chicago area this past weekend for a wedding. So there was a perfect opportunity for a picture of myself in semi formal attire....Still have all my teeth and my hair is still dark ( a little gray is creeping in). My only complaint is I have more chins than I need and am trying to lose the extra chins (again). I have been in contact with Mike Levison and he and his wife will be in Phoenix in Jan '05 for a marathon - so we will see them. In talking to Gary Bramon, I found out that Gary and Jack Jenkins come to Mesa in the spring for spring training. Jack's son is a pro baseball player for the Brewers - so we hopefully will see them in the spring of '05. Looking forward to the Sig Bust. " - George Grossman, Sept. 28, 2004


Arel (Ralph) Thomas - "Jack Jenkins gave me a call and told me all about the upcoming reunion. All these faces and trying to put it all in sequence is a challenge to the memory cells in my brain..providing I can till find mine! I lived at the 21st and "T" street pad until mid 1963 and, like the rest of us, have great memories.
Arel (Ralph) Thomas, wife Kathy in 2002
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The first photo (see Gamma Nu Photo Gallery index for this and other photos of Ralph entertaining) is of a little performance I gave at one of the parties and shows several familiar faces in the background (especially the middle picture). After Sac State I kept going north and ended up in Seattle working as a guitar single in all of the bigger hotels in the area. I was very lucky and hooked up with a good agent that kept me busy for several years and I traveled in that venue throughout the U.S. From '74 to '80 I lived in Las Vegas and had three different show groups, returning to Seattle in '80. I did about 26 cruise ship engagements to Alaska, Mexico and South America plus stopping in Florida as an opening act for Florence Henderson (another photo), Kay Ballard, Larry Storch, and several other theatre people. I was very lucky, also, in finding a great woman to share this with me. We have four grandkids..the oldest is a senior in high school. (Good God!!) We're still living in the Seattle area (Woodinville) NE of the city. Life is good and hope all is well with everyone. Fred Lizalde was responsible for my coming to Sacramento. We both are from Santa Maria and he will be always remembered for his gentle words, kind smile, and caring soul. So many stories to share..so little time!!

"I was never that good at golf....enjoyed the walking, though. Up here I end up holding the umbrellas! I met my wife, Kathy, when I returned from Las Vegas. We will be married 25 years next July. (2nd marriage for both). I also teach organ and piano at Prosser Piano & Organ..we have 4 stores in the area and emphasize classes for "seniors". Since we're all on the edge of that, I find it to be fun just listening to all of their stories and get a glimpse of what lies ahead!! We have a ball together and I look forward everyweek to "Playtime". The last pic is one that was taken at a Xmas party I played for in '03 for the Mercedes Owner's association. (They turned out to be nice people, anyway...Ho Ho). We will be trying to get down for the reunion. Placing all the faces with names is great fun and hope to hear from all of my brothers and little sisters. I remember a few songs we used to sing that I don't think we can post on the web..at least not with the grandkids around. It was a good time and place. Take care.." - Arel (Ralph) Thomas, October 2, 2004.


Art Derby - "Art is one of California’s last hunters and gatherers. He still grows things to eat and is semi-retired. When he works it is in outside sales. Wife Kim owns a public records research company. They have two adult children. Their son Pete is married and their daughter Lisa is on the faculty at Biola University in Southern California.
Art and Kim Derby with daughter Lisa, 2004
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She plans to return to Northern California in the spring. Meanwhile, Kim and Art are praying for grandchildren. After graduation, Kim and I worked for government agencies in San Francisco from 1967 to 1970. Then I transfered to the Bureau of Land Management from 1970 to 1978 and Kim was a mom and homemaker. I resigned in late 1978 and Kim and I started a housecleaning service in the Silicon Valley. In 1984, I started outside sales on the side and went full time in 1996 when we moved back to the Sacto area and settled in Citrus Heights. I sold labels and tags up until 9/11 and now sell advertising on the back of the receipt tapes on Safeway and Albertsons. Kim feels as if she came home and this is as good as spot as any for me to end up.

"It was great reading the different stories that have come in so far. I am looking forward to the Sig Bust next spring. You may not remember, but you are the one who taught me not to wear white socks with dress shoes. Kim (Beta Phi Beta - wife of 38 years - introduced by Dennis Sartini - the Italian gentleman who tried to teach me how to wash lettuce and eata spaghetti) gets mad at me when I do it now. A guy named Jerry, from Isleton, taught me how to tuck in my shirt. (That was hard on my ego.) This was all in the early days of the T street house. I guess I was pretty opinionated back then. (Did they make the movie, Animal House, after us?)

"Ran into Danny Barber the other day, and we started right off as if there hadn’t been close to 40 years apart. I miss Hotch. I made him mad at me a few years ago at an Alpha Sig reunion. Guess I was pretty opinionated. Much of the college years are still a fog, as represented by some of the other notes. Things I remember are raining beer down on Tim Fitzers’s head as we drove off road at one of the early sig busts. (Fitzer being one of the original ORVers.) I remember Fitzer in his big bike race at the Greek games on his one speed. Where is Jeff Roberts?

"I remember when Hotchkiss shot a deer, and we were cooking the ribs at T street. Barber wanted some. We told him it was a dog. I think he joined us, very tasty. I remember Fred Lizalde taking care of me several times. Thanks for having his photo on the site. My best to Vivian - we got to live across the street from them for a while in Bakersfield. I think of him often. Sorry to hear he passed away. Most of my remembrances are positive. Some are with regret. I apologize to those I offended. I met Steve Foy’s daughter in a business transaction a couple of years ago. She is a sweetheart. Life has been good. Hope to see you next spring. Looking forward to time with all who can make it. Fraternally," - Art Derby, 8072 Phoebe Way, Citrus Heights, CA. 95610. Telephone 916-729-8958. October 10, 2004


More from Brother Rempel about Brother Derby

(The following response to Art's statement came from Gary Rempel a day after it was posted - "Wow, Sartini found Derby a nice lady to give him 38 years of stability--that is great and another example of Sartini the Class Act! However, Art's apology for all the fondly remembered misdeeds that made him a classic and the prototype for one of the Animal House characters is making me weep a bit and feel like maybe I should publicly apologize also. Won't happen. I have the photo of Barber standing atop Derby's shoulders about 5 stories high, on the peaked roof of the "K" street fraternity house, adjusting the TV antenna. That was the singularly most insane, life-threatening episode of one particular day, but all in a day's work for those two. As for Barber eating what Derby told him was dog, it would be equally believable and delicious if Derby was told it was ROAD KILL dog. I lived in the house and remember those guys' eating habits, but wonder if they can remember the huge bags of 3-day-old donuts I used to get for a dollar a bag at some all night donutery. We used to heat them in the oven to soften them up enough to be wolfed down with milk (some probably using Red Mountain or flat, keg beer) - or the alley behind a catering truck service where I often salvaged the day's uneaten sandwiches. We would remove the soggy lettuce and the rest of the sandwich would be fine cuisine. This harvesting practice stopped abruptly when we found a large, dead rat next to the garbage cans - with no apparent cause of death! If the Committee to reconstitute Sig Bust needs another set of ideas locked in a 60s time warp, I can make it in January, given about 3 weeks lead time to adjust my court appearances." - Gary Rempel, 760-727-9105. Oct. 14, 2004 >


Milt Briggs - "I'm retired from the school district (San Juan Unified in Greater Sacramento) after 34 years as a speech therapist. I had a grant last year to do musical story telling with the whistle from the Puffin Foundation in schools. I have been working to develop my musicianship and performing for a variety of events. I have been
Champion Whistler Milt Briggs
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performing at Apple Hill (High Hill) on the weekends through October. It is very honest work - tips, free lunch, selling CDs, and a pie to take home. I play, sing, and whistle whatever I feel like. I perform some of the best melodic whistling anywhere, but I don't get the recognition that a couple of the New York whistlers do. They have agents and political connections. I'm a Maverick, but I like it. Most people don't think of the human whistle as a musical instrument, but it has been my main musical instrument all my life. I support whistling with my own musical arrangements using guitar, piano, and keyboard. I learned to whistle when I was 4 years old. When I was 10 years old I began performing with the choir of the small country school I attended. The choir would sing the verse and I would whistle the chorus. We performed at other schools and elsewhere in the community. People loved it. Amazingly, from the time I was 12 I didn't whistle for an audience until I was 41 years old. Working a day job and raising a family took up my energies. I am now devoting more time to performing and recording.

"My arrangements are "for a whistler by a whistler." I have composed 40 pieces for whistling that have a wide variety of styles - classical to jazz and blues. My CD "Milt Briggs Champion Whistler" has 9 of my original pieces for whistling and 9 traditional tunes. The compositions I have written suit my complex and difficult technical style of whistling. I am a respected maverick in the whistling community because I am self-accompanied. I always perform with live music. I was awarded the International Grand Champion Award in 1985. Since that time I have received the Lillian Williams Award for Professional Whistlers and been selected for the Whistlers Hall of Fame. I have judged International and National competitions and been an honored guest at the International Whistling convention in Louisburg, North Carolina." - Brother Milt, Oct. 14, 2004. (Parts of this statement have been lifted from Milt's two websites that promote his records. They are at http://www.cdbaby.com/cd/miltbriggs (which includes samples of his music) and at http://miltbriggs.com/1024x768/index5.htm.)


Gary Bramon - "Toni and I just returned from Gettysburg where we did our second Gettysburg Civil War tour. We had
Gary and Tony Bramon at Gettysburg
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a great time and learned a lot. We're still looking for many brothers; thought we had a lead today on Gordon Walsh and Raul Quezada. Turned out to be dead ends but I did learn that Ruly recently moved to Fresno CA. Anybody know where he is? I loved the pictures of the brothers....I thought I looked better than that then, oh well. Thanks again." - Gary Bramon, Nov. 1, 2004, Novato, CA


Gary Toombs - "Gary asked me to send this for him -- he hates computers. Gary spent 30 years in administration at California State University Stanislaus in Turlock, CA. In 1999 he had a heart attack, probably brought on by stress, so it was the perfect time to retire. Since retirement he has been working with me in commercial real estate (no stress there!) We have two grown children - Dan and his family live in Yarm, England and Tracee and her family live in Turlock two doors down the street from us. We have six grandchildren - three in England and three in Turlock.

We try to travel as much as we can. With our son in England we try to go there twice a year. We just returned from two weeks in England and two weeks in Italy. The attached pictures (posted on the
Gary and Pam Toombs in Italy, October 2004
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Siggy Raider photo album page) were taken on our trip to Italy where we took a week-long cooking class, thus the picture of Gary in the kitchen. Hope to see everyone soon. It's nice to be back in touch." - Pam and Gary Toombs, Nov. 5, 2004

Clyde Oliver West - Clyde is listed in the Attorney Profiles section of the State Bar of California's website. It says he is an active member and was admitted to the bar Jan. 5, 1972. It gives his address as P. O. Box 214630, Sacramento, CA 95821, and his telephone number as 916-971-1300. - The listing was found by Jack Schafer, Dec. 5, 2004.

Joe Mehrten - Joe and his wife, Ann, operate their third-generation, working cattle ranch at Clements, CA. The ranch, the site of Sig Bust gatherings in the 1960s, includes a B&B called Grand Oaks Inn. The inn has four bedrooms decorated with family heirlooms and offers a pool, large hot tub and great meals. A brochure from an affiliate advertises that Joe is hosting several tour groups in 2005. He is associated with Heritage Tours of Clements, Calif. The firm's November newsletter promotes a wide range of travel opportunities in the Clements-Lodi area, other locations in California and also some international destinations. On the schedule is "Heritage Picnic, Ranch Pasture Party" for April 16. It features "a leisurely day for family, friends and grandchildren among wild flowers on the Mehrten Ranch. Enjoy succulent tri-tip barbecued over oak coals served with all the trimmings and a beverage. Games, live music and entertainment. Price: $8 per person in advance. Reservations will not be taken after April 10." Other day trips in Central California led by Joe include a tour of Filoli Gardens April 7, a performance of "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof" April 10, and a tour of Castles in Calveras County April 30. In addition, Joe is leading a 9-day trip to Washington DC May 14-22 and a two-week trip to Peru Oct. 27-Nov. 10, 2005. For reservations and information contact Joe at 209-759-3713 or 866-759-3713. - The Heritage Tours brochure was passed on by Gary and Toni Bramon Dec. 20, 2005.

Gerry Hatcher - Gerry Hatcher has maintained the muscled and very fit physique that once made him a standout halfback on the Sac State football team. Now divorced, he relocated in 2004 from California to Greater Memphis,
Gerry Hatcher, January 2005
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where he bought a house with a swimming pool in the suburb of Collierville, Tenn. Two of his four daughters also live in the thriving community, where they, too, enjoy a lot more house for a lot less money than in Northern California. Gerry is retired after coaching and teaching in Northern California high schools and middle schools for 36 years. Thirty of those years were in a school system that serves Travis Air Force Base. Over his long career he coached just about every sport, mainly football. Gerry enjoys spending two days a week watching his grandchildren. On other days he works out at the YMCA and plays golf for as little as $20 a round, with cart - far lower than the prices charged on comparable courses in California. He still has his Alpha Sig fraternity pin and his letter jacket from Sac State, where he excelled in football and track. Gerry travels a good bit, logging recent trips to Puerto Rico and several countries in Western Europe. He plans to be in Sacramento in the summer of 2005 for his class reunion. When not on the road, he works part-time as a substitute teacher. - Reported by Buzz Nolan Jan. 18, 2005 based on comments made by Gerry during a dinner the previous evening that was arranged by Dewey Howell for the "Three Amigos," all transplanted Californians now living in the Memphis area. They call themselves the "Gamma Grits Outpost" of Gamma Nu chapter of Alpha Sig and plan to get together at least quarterly.

John Martinez - "Great to hear from you "old guys", looking forward to the reunion. I retired in 2001 from coaching at Laney Community College (Oakland). Married 28 years this time around; first marriage was a bust. I have a son, 39 years old.; stepson, 38 years, and we have a daughter 26. One grandson, almost 4. We live in Sun City Lincoln Hills, Calif. (Del Webb retirement community). Great place to live and have fun." - John Martinez, Jan. 21, 2005.

Jim Cook - "Wow!!!. Seeing the pics and brief bios of Gamma Nu Brothers brought back a flood of memories of my youth and the "Old Gal." Except you guys look old; I look the same (yea, right). I haven't included a photo of me because I don't have any good ones (too ugly, I guess) and, like Dick Hotchkiss, my computers skills don't go much beyond the keyboard. As Dick says, "Too much shit in the head makes for sleepless nights."

Some of my prized possessions today are from my fraternity days. The tomahawk, which each of us Pledges had to make and carry to school every day, hangs in my den. The tomahawk has the names of my Pledge Brothers on the handle, among them, Pete Siller. I was glad to read about the tribute to Pete in the Siggy Raider by Buzz Nolan. Pete was not only a Brother to me, he was a Pledge Brother. Every time I go by Capitol Park in Sacramento, I go by the Vietnam Memorial and look up Pete's name. Even my granddaughter knows the name, Pete Siller, and that he was my Brother.

My fraternity beer mug also has a place in the den (unfortunately, it's full of pens and pencils these days). I still wear (on and off) my Sac State class ring with the Alpha Sig letters in the stone. The lettering on the ring is worn. It's had a rough life, including being dropped down the hole in a pyong-so (outhouse) in Uijonbu, Korea, (but that's another story, for another time).

When I pledged, we had the T and S Street houses. We tore the T Street house apart (with the owner's approval) when they told us they were going to demolish it after we moved. The S Street house is still standing (an office building now). I remember the well-endowed red head in the apartment building next door who used to strip for us in her living room each evening. There were times we had so many guys looking out that one bedroom window that I'm surprised the house didn't tip over. I remember the brick barbeque that my pledge class built as our pledge project. Unfortunately, the barbeque is now gone, the back yard paved over for parking.

I remember Jack Jenkins (I will not go into his nicknames--we all know what they were) jumping off the bed in the bedroom above the living room so hard, during a party, that the chandelier in the living room fell to the floor. I remember us turning the lights out in the house during parties and Mr. Monk trailing behind, turning the lights back on. I also remember when he dumped out some really good punch at a party downtown. I think that was the night that Larry Jenkins' date barfed into his shirt pocket.

I remember when my pledge class had a booth during Greek Week. We decided on a chorus line, with Rimas as the featured stripper. We were such a hit that we were asked for a repeat performance at a subsequent fraternity party. Pete Siller got rave reviews for his high kicks as, apparently, he didn't have anything on under his skirt.

After I graduated in '65 I did some traveling. I stayed in Alpha Sig houses at Iowa State University, Ames Iowa, at the Illinois Institute of Technology in Chicago, at Presbyterian College in South Carolina, and I partied with Alpha Sigs from Purdue on Daytona Beach, Florida. In Chicago I learned to drink Submarines and I drank Purple Jesus (their own concoction-go figure)) with brother Alpha Sigs at Presbyterian College.

Somewhere along the way I spent 3 years in the Army. I couldn't be an officer because of my poor eyesight, so I settled for being a Communications Center Specialist (boy, did I get conned on that one). I spent a year and a half near the DMZ, in the "Land of the Morning Calm," South Korea and a year at MacDill AFB in Tampa FL, in the US Strike Command. In Korea I saw Lenny Pollochi at Yong Song. Wow, half a world away and there was a Gamma Nu Brother.

After the Army, I spent a few years in various jobs, one of which was an Insurance Claims Adjuster in Reno. My claims territory was all of the Lake Tahoe area (tough duty). One day, when a few of us were at coffee, one guy mentioned belonging to a fraternity and one of the others said--oh you were one of those "frat" guys. We took a survey around the table and it seems that all of us, except for the non-frat guy, were fraternity men. He never used the word "frat" in front of us again. One of my friends and neighbors today is an Alpha Sig from Cal, Berkeley.

In 1971, I married my wife, Zoe. She had two children and we had one more together. My kids today are Michael, 41, Andrea, 37, and Jason, 32. I have two granddaughters, Tatiana, 16 and Brianna, 9.

I recently retired from State service as a Supervising Criminal Investigator, with 34 years of State service. Today, I'm just a retired guy, but I'm still biking and running. Over the years I've completed a lot of century rides, four double centuries and the Markleville Death Ride twice; I've run a ton of short runs, and a few 30Ks and marathons. I've acquired many aches and pains over the years, but as long as I can put one foot in front of the other I plan on continuing. My goal is to keep biking and running 'til the day I die (or at least a reasonable facsimile thereof).

I ride every Saturday with a couple of other old farts and, for the past 11 years I've run every weekday morning with my running partner, my 12-year-old German Shepherd, Sasha. We've both slowed over the years, but we're still out pounding the pavement by about 5:45 AM each day. I estimate that she and I have run over 10,000 miles together. That's a lot of companionship. Don't know yet if I'll be able to make it to Sig Bust, but I'll be there with you in spirit if I'm not able to make it." - Jim Cook, Sacramento, March 4, 2005

Dan Smith - "Hi Gary. Thanks for the effort in organizing the reunion. Sorry I cannot join the event. I do return to California frequently (I have a home in Rancho Mirage), but I will be in classes until April 8. I have attached my cv (very long) and a short bio for your information. Please pass on my best regards to everyone at the reunion." - Daniel W. Smith, Ph.D., P.Eng., FRSC, Professor and CRC, Environmental Engineering, Dept. of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of Alberta, Canada. The curriculum vitae states Dan got his B.S. in civil engineering at Sac State in 1967, his M.S. in sanitary engineering at Cal State - San Jose in 1968 and his Ph.D. in environmental health engineering at the U of Kansas in 1970. His current teaching responsibilities include undergraduate Environmental Engineering and computer applications, and graduate courses in physical-chemical and biological treatment processes, management of water quality, distribution and collection systems and cold climate utilities systems. His research activities include conventional and advanced water and wastewater treatment, ozone treatment techniques, water quality and distribution system problems.

Larry Mentink - "Recognized the names, if not the faces. I'm living in Bangkok, Thailand. If any of the Sigs are planning a trip on this side of the pond, I'd be happy to see them. I've been living here since 1986 and am teaching English at a uni here. I retired from the Army in 1981 and divorced in '86.Replaced my Ex with a beautiful 26 year old. Growing old disgracefully." - Larry Mentink, Bangkok, April 17, 2005, an Alpha Sig since Spring, 1962.

Al Mason - "I’ll try to reply with a bit of information here and there about what’s been happening with my life since so long ago at Sac State – and to me that does seem like a very long time ago. Sorry I could not make it to the reunion. It would have been nice to see you and other friends from college days.

"After Sac State I worked for a short while as a technical writer at what was then called Douglas Aircraft at a rocket testing station just outside Sacramento. There I quickly learned I should go back to school, and soon managed to get accepted in the PhD program at UC Davis. Most anthropologists do a kind of research involving ‘fieldwork’ -- mine was in the Amazon in Brazil, where I lived with and studied the social life of a native group called the Oronao’. That led to a teaching job in Fredericton, New Brunswick, Canada, at a small Catholic university, that didn’t mind hiring non-Catholics as long you did your work. At first this was to be a one-year or, at most, two-year job, but I got hooked by the location and culture (I had wanted to return to the east coast where I grew up) and spent the rest of my career there, retiring two years ago. Mandatory retirement at 65 had been brought in to get rid of the older, expensive faculty.

"I met my wife at the university – she taught Spanish and literature – and we brought together her three kids and my one into a family that we’re proud of. All three of Nela’s kids live in Montreal, and my son lives in Monterrey, Mexico, where he’s a schoolteacher. And we have three grandchildren now!!

"You mentioned being on the Bay of Fundy watching whales. Now that’s a place I know fairly well, having crossed it many times in my own and in friends’ boats. I don’t much like it because, as you say, it’s cold, and it can be a nasty place for sailing. It’s a great place to get seasick, especially when the tidal current runs one direction and the wind the opposite, setting up wicked, choppy water. But it’s also great for whale watching. One day Nela’s youngest son and I were sailing off Campobello Island when we were visited by three whales that seemed too interested in our boat. They crossed our bow and then came up from behind and looked us over from an uncomfortably close vantage point. I thought we were going to be the object of an amorous interlude.

"John McPhee’s article (in The New Yorker, about UPS shipping live lobsters from Canada's Maritime Provinces) brought to mind sailing around lobster pots in Maine, which is much like doing an obstacle course. It’s a wonder there are any lobster left in Maine if the number of traps and lines are any indication. The lines get tangled in the boat propellers, and even worse, sometimes in the rudder, and that’s bad news. A few years ago I met an old gentleman in Port Mouton, Nova Scotia, who anchored next to me there. Later that year I read about him in a sailboat disaster story. He had got tangled up with lobster pot lines in Maine, which reduced his ability to steer. For some strange reason – the debilities of age no doubt -- rather than get the problem fixed, he proceeded on southward, only to get blown ashore in a storm in New Jersey, destroying his beautiful boat and a wharf. He had to be lifted off his boat by a Coast Guard helicopter. No one wants to go over the side of a boat with a serrated knife to saw off polypropylene line – the water is cold – but sailing in Maine means you have to be prepared to do just that.

"I guess you can see that sailing is my obsession. When it became obvious we would retire, we bought a new sail boat, a day sailer, 28 feet in length, that we keep on a large lake near Fredericton. It’s
Al's row boat in garage shop
a beautiful boat, designed in 1932 by a famous American boat designer named L. Francis Herreshoff. At this time of year I’m busy at varnishing the teak, painting the part of the hull that stays in the water, and so on. Recently I’ve also taken up boat building as a hobby. My first production is an 11 and ˝ foot row boat (also a Herreshoff design). Another boat, a 17 foot sailboat, is next, once I finish off the full-size line drawings. Sailing is something I took up more than 30 years ago, first as a small dinghy sailor. Sometimes I crew for other people, sailing around Nova Scotia, or down the East coast. The longest trip I’ve made was from Florida to Maine in what turned out to be a hellish voyage with a friend, who unfortunately turns into a nutcase when he gets on the water. In the 30 years of sailing I’ve tried all sorts of boats, from racing dinghies to a Star class boat to cruising boats, and enjoyed them all.

"The McPhee article has some information I never imagined, and probably didn’t need to know – dead lobsters make their way to Asian buffets, which is another good reason not to go there – and how bull semen makes its way from Nebraska to Montana. I would have thought some cowboy on horseback directed bulls along a long worn trail.

"My wife, Nela, is originally from Argentina. Occasionally we go there, she more often than me. It’s a long, tiring and expensive trip, but always nice to visit the relatives, eat empanadas and drink good wine. After retirement, Nela has become even more involved in her writing, art and research than when we were at the university. She has a number of books of poetry, and gets published quite a bit in anthologies, academic journals, and so on. Her research is on the earliest woman poet in the Americas. And she does quite a bit of art work as well. Last night she just returned from a conference in Montreal, where she was the keynote speaker. As usual, every time she goes to one conference, she gets more invitations to travel to other places, like universities, for talks. So she is staying very active.

"I’d better wrap this up for now. The sun is shining and the temps are climbing, so I’m out to the garage to do some varnishing. Best regards. - Al Mason, May 10, 2005

John Alexander - Brigadier General John R. Alexander, an Alpha Sig at Sac State, was named Acting Adjutant General of the California National Guard by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger June 7, 2005. A press release from the governor's office said, "Alexander has served in the California National Guard for more than 37 years. He has served as assistant adjutant general for the past year where his responsibilities included
John and Linda Alexander at Sig Bust
oversight of the day-to-day operations of the California National Guard Military Department Headquarters. Previously, he served for 13 years on active duty with the National Guard Bureau as the United States property and fiscal officer for California. In this capacity, he was the accountable federal officer for all government funds and property provided to the California Army and Air National Guard.

"Alexander began his military career in the California National Guard in 1966 as an enlisted member of the 118th Maintenance Company. He was commissioned in 1968 through the California Military Academy Officer Candidate School and has served at all levels of command in Ordinance, Finance and Transportation assignments throughout his career. In addition, Alexander has received many awards including the Legion of Merit Award, the Army Meritorious Service Medal, the Army Commendation Medal, the Armed Forces Reserve Medal, the National Defense Service Medal, the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, the Army Reserve Component Achievement Medal and the Army Service Ribbon.

"Alexander, 61, earned a master's degree in public administration from the University of San Francisco and a Bachelor of Science degree from Sacramento State College. This position does not require Senate confirmation and he will continue to receive his current compensation. Alexander is a Republican. Alexander fills the vacancy created by the retirement of Major General Thomas Eres effective June 7, 2005."

A few days later, Brother Alexander wrote a few lines about his assumption of command: "Well Buzz,
Larry Jenkins at Sig Bust
One never knows. I don't know how long this opportunity will last so I'm working hard and enjoying each day. So far so good. As you can imagine, the first few days we had a lot of anxious people and a hyperventilating grape vine. Happy to say, things have calmed down considerably and we are back to the business of running the Guard." - John Alexander, June 18, 2005.

Meanwhile, Jack Schafer passed on a June 9, 2005 report in the Sacramento Bee that said, "It was an appointment he neither sought nor expected, but as the new acting head of the California National Guard, Brig. Gen. John R. Alexander said that he will continue his predecessor's agenda and ignore the infighting that played a role in forcing the resignation of his boss. "I'm not here for a handful of people who are disgruntled," Alexander said in an interview in his Sacramento office. "I'm here for the 20,000 Air Guard and Army Guard soldiers who need to have stable, level-headed leadership."That background noise, that hum, has always been here," he said of the critics within the Guard. "It just has different names."

Larry Jenkins - "Buzz it was great seeing everyone at the Sigbust in April. I really appreciate your followup on the brothers through the internet. You may share with the guys my bit of news, which demonstrates importance of our April gathering. The support of the brotherhood is positive and affirming and something I know will be helpful in the coming months. This summer will be a challenging one for me as I begin treatments for non-Hodgkins Lymphoma. It is one day at a time, and the good news is that there are successful treatments for this cancer. I certainly hope so because I want to attend the next Sigbust. Keep up the good work." - Best, Larry Jenkins, June 17, 2005, San Francisco.

Elizabeth Monk, widow of Brother Paschal Monk - "I had a nice chat with Elizabeth Monk yesterday. Mrs. Monk is 99 years young. She will be 100 on September 11, 2005. She is quite remarkable for a person almost 100. I called her on Tuesday and asked if I might come over for a visit. She looks much the same as she did when we were in school. Well, maybe she looks a little older, but then don't we all. She still lives in the same house she shared with Paschal at 5600 State Avenue, Sacramento, CA 95819 (Telephone 916-451-1905). She has
Elizabeth Monk
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a full time care-person. Her daughter lives nearby, in Rancho Cordova, and takes her to church and does other things with her on Sundays. She recently took a trip to Boston (May 2005) to attend her grandson's wedding). She stills plays the piano. This year, her birthday will be on Sunday and she is going to play the piano in church. She said they are building the service that day around her, and they've already asked her to name her favorite hymns. I gave her a dozen roses and a copy of Welcome to Siggy Raider. We reminisced a bit and talked about her family. She has one daughter and three grandchildren. She told me she would enjoy reading about all the Alpha Sig Brothers. I told her that Paschal would have been proud of the way we all turned out. She responded that yes, he would, but that we were all smart boys (I know she wasn't talking about me). I gave her my address and phone number and told her to call me if there was anything she ever needed. We should send her a card, or do something for her, on her 100th birthday. Maybe one of the past presidents, on behalf of the Brothers, should do it." - Fraternally, Jim Cook, July 7, 2005

A Reminisce about Pete Siller -


A floodgate of memories opened wide yesterday when I read Gary Bramon's email about the plans for the Sig Bust Reunion next April. It has probably been 40 years since I've had contact with any of my fraternity brothers.


Gary had tracked me down from a directory that the national fraternity had distributed. Evidently I gave them my telephone number in a moment of sentimental weakness some years ago; the experience of life has taught me to be leery of providing contact or personal information to not-for-profit organizations. Such guarantees that you will be asked for money time and again, often by telephone right at dinnertime.


But in this case, I'm glad I did. The email and a subsequent telephone conversation with Gary and our former chapter president, Jack Jenkins (whose son is playing professional baseball for the Milwaukee Brewers), made my day. Aw hell, hearing their voices and jointly recalling the memories of great times we enjoyed together made my week and maybe even my month.  Taking a page from hippie Abbie Hoffman's quote about remembering the 1960's, I joked, "Anyone who remembers all the fun we had in Alpha Sig did not fully participate in fraternity activities."


Of course, now that I am 61 (I still have all my hair but it is mostly gray; my onetime swimmer's body is more whale-shaped than Spitz-shaped), my recollections are somewhat spotty. As I told a pal the other day, "I have never forgotten anything - at least not that I recall."


My memories of our times in the early 1960s are surprisingly intense today, despite the passage of four decades. Most of those memories are pleasant. A few are not. I am still in pain
Pete Siller (left) and Buzz Nolan at Folsum Lake in 1964
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from the body blow we received in early 1968 with the news that our fraternity brother - and my best friend of many years - Pete Siller had been killed in Vietnam. I had grown up with Pete and recruited him into the fraternity about 1963. I departed Sac State for Ole Miss (drawn by the beauty of Southern women, SEC football and low admissions standards) the next year. Pete transferred to the University of Hawaii (drawn by the challenge of big wave surfing) a year later. Nonetheless, Pete and I got together for Scuba diving and body surfing in Santa Cruz during the summers and when home for holidays. We once raised the ire of our brothers by "borrowing" the fraternity rubber boat to raft down the American River during a Christmas flood - drawing some unwelcome attention from police and rescue personnel as well as apparently holing the craft in the process. I've always regretted not joining him and other pals for a gold-diving expedition to Costa Rica one summer. They didn't recover any gold jewelry supposedly worn by human sacrifices tossed into deep, water-filled pits by ancient Indians. But Pete & Party had a great time. Instead, I wimped out and went to summer school to pull my GPA out of the pits.


Pete and I went into the Marines about the same time, with me enlisting because the draft board was breathing down my neck. I remember Pete telling me when we were teens about how he wanted to follow in the footsteps of his father and join the Marines to prove his manhood. Not that Pete ever needed to prove anything. He was a man's man, courageous, direct and forceful. He had been a cross-country runner in high school and had the toughness of a crocodile, plus advanced swimming, surfing and sky-diving abilities. He could also play classical piano music with strength and grace.


We were both at Quantico, VA, at the same time. I ended up as a corporal and editor of the base newspaper. Pete soon went to Vietnam as a second lieutenant commanding an infantry platoon. I skated 'Nam because of a freak accident. My orders for MACV came a few months later, when my right leg was in a cast due to a broken ankle. By the time I was fit for duty, I was too short to ship out. I soon exited the service on a school cut, entered grad school, and worked as a newspaperman in Memphis and later as a corporate communications executive with a global pharmaceutical company.


I lived. Pete died.


I remember getting awakened in the Quantico barracks in the middle of a winter night to take a telephone call. Another close friend had called me from Sacramento with the terrible news about Pete's death. Later, I found out the details through an internal Marine Corps report. He had been nearly cut in half by VC machine gun fire while on patrol in Quang Tri Province. Pete was "in country" for less than two weeks. A few years later, I was in Sacramento to visit my family and called Pete's mother. My suggestion of a visit was politely turned aside, evidently because she didn't want to reopen an old wound.


I wept like a baby the first and subsequent times I've visited the Vietnam Memorial in Washington and touched his name carved into the wall. I still grieve and tear up when I think about Pete's life that was lost so young. It is so sad that our fraternity brother and 50,000 other young guys who were so full of vigor and confidence were denied the joys of marriage, children and other pleasures most of us have experienced over the years. Pete was a wonderful friend and a lot of fun. I think he would have been a good husband and a great father. His old-time values, his loyalty and his strong work ethic would have likely resulted in the success and satisfaction that comes from decades of work well performed. His was a life that could have been but wasn't.


Every time I've been in Sacramento for the last 30 years - which has not been often even though my two brothers still live and work there - I unfailingly visit East Lawn Cemetery's El Dorado mausoleum. Pete's crypt is No. 2/43 in the west section, upstairs.  I usually brush away the cobwebs on an artificial flower arrangement, shed a few tears, say a prayer and leave some fresh flowers on the floor.


- Buzz Nolan, August 27, 2004


Reminisces about some other brothers -


As I went down the initial list of Alpha Sig alumni named in Gary Bramon's initial email of August, 2004, I found myself struggling with putting faces to some of the names. I guess that is what 40 years of non-contact will do to you. I continue to get The Tomahawk, published by the national Alpha Sigma Phi organization, but it seems that news of Gamma Nu is sparse. That is probably because the chapter went dark not long after I moved to the South (not connected!). I've been told that chapter members were involved in a cafeteria food fight in the mid or late 1960s and the fraternity was booted from campus.


Two of the most memorable years of my late teens were spent in and around the fraternity house - even if many of the memories of them are blurred in a beery haze. Good Gawd, what a wild and rowdy bunch we were in the early 1960's. I think the pounding many of us get as we move through the cycles of life has worn down most of the rough edges and cooled the hot blood of young manhood. Today, I not only march in the Fuddy Duddy Parade, I carry a banner. But I fondly recall spending one semester as the unofficial "keg master," having learned from an older, graduating brother the art and delicate craft of inserting a spigot into a 10-gallon keg of beer without turning it into foam. Here are a few random memories of long-ago times, which are offered in a spirit of good will in the hopes that they may trigger responses or other memories for future publication.


Dennis Sartini - After a long evening of way too much fun, several of us repaired to an all-night breakfast restaurant. It may have been on Broadway. All but one of us ordered burgers or eggs. Dennis insisted to the waitress that she serve him an off-menu dish. He demanded a bowl of olives, he told her, "Because I'm Italian. That's why." Even after all these years, I salute Denny for his good-natured, patient responses to ethnic jokes we cracked in his presence that would be intolerable today.


Al Mason - I'm pretty sure he was chapter president at the time.
Jack Jenkins (left) and Buzz Nolan 'catch' Nola Lancaster, 1963
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He, Jack Jenkins and several other brothers were living in an upstairs flat over a laundry, perhaps on J Street near 16th. Somebody (may have been  Tim Fitzer or another one of "The Comancheros") had somehow obtained an incredibly gross movie, of what was known as the "blue genre." We had a guys-only "smoker" in the apartment. It was with horror that Al turned off the projector after one of the late-arriving brothers ran up the stairs and told Al that the movie could be seen from the busy street and passing cars. It had been projected on a translucent window shade. Al is one of the most intellectually formidable guys I've ever known. We tried to exchange some philosophical viewpoints by letter once I went off to college in Mississippi but I quickly discovered that I was not in his league.


Raul Quezada - He was an absolute chick magnet. We shared a downstairs room one summer in the frat house and I frequently had to make myself scarce. On some nights he had two or even three dates, carefully staged at different times. He drove an El Camino with a mattress in the back. The guys knew him for having great hands as an end on the college football team. The girls must have known his hands for something else. Broke as usual, I spent the night on the floor of a room Ruly shared with somebody in Santa Cruz during an Alpha Sig spring break outing. I remember one of the guys got such a terrible sunburn after nodding off on the beach that he required medical attention.


Ed Pacheco - He was the fraternity clown. His frequent and snappy invocations of Antonio Salazar, strong man of Ed's ancestral country of Portugal, were always good for a laugh. I've often thought of Ed over the years whenever I've been at a fancy banquet serving unfamiliar foods. One year our chapter had a big dinner at a nice restaurant. We all had dates. We were freshly scrubbed and decked out in our logoed blue blazers. None of us - not even the girls - had the slightest idea of how to eat the main dish, which turned out to be a squab stuffed with wild rice. A bone like that of a drumstick stuck out of the bird, flagpole style. After a long minute or two of hesitation and anxious looks up and down the squared tables by everybody seeking guidance, Ed grinned and went first. He grabbed the roasted bird by the protruding bone and bit into it as though it were a chicken leg. Once the rice cascaded down his chest, we knew to use a knife and fork. Thanks, Ed, for that lesson and for a lot of belly laughs. As my reward to you, I will now tell you her name was Suzanne. I still chuckle about the time I set up Ed with with a cute blonde I'd known for years, walked him to her front door, made the appropriate introductions then refused to tell Ed her name again once he promptly forgot it. The manuevers he went through to avoid introducing her at that night's frat party took genius.


John Dille - John was another chick magnet who also had frequent, multiple dates on the same evening. One of his late-date favorites was a brunette horse fancier with flashing brown eyes. She lived in a basement apartment across the street from the infamous flat where Mason and others lived and often sought advice from John's fraternity brothers about their fractured relationship. She and other admiring co-eds were thrilled by John's heroics on the basketball court. I remember one game that came down to the final seconds, when John worked the ball around the key for the final shot. He took the long shot and won the game. The team went on to a national championship tournament in Indiana with John as the star player.


John Georgeakakis - We had hired a small, professional band for a party. It played "old folks" music well, but our group wanted something livelier. The band's piano player was mightily offended when John took over the keyboards, playing from ear the latest rock-n-roll.


Steve Sipes - Like me, Steve was on the swimming team. But he was better, especially in the breast stroke. His first love was wrestling and he frequently invited others to take a few falls on the mat with him. Strong  guy. I heard he made a career out of the military.


Ed Austin - Big Ed was afraid of nobody. He and other members of the Sac State football team who were Alpha Sigs put the word "jock" in our well-deserved and somewhat fearsome reputation for being the "jock house" and not a group to mess with. The collective athletic prowess we demonstrated in intramural sports crumbled during one of the annual Rubber Boat Raft races down the American River. Our Navy surplus, yellow raft was a wallowing pig in the water despite the heavily muscled arms of our jock paddlers. We were beaten by a mile or more when a lightweight but clever group of wimps in another fraternity acquired a Zodiac-like craft with close to zero draft.


Condoms Aloft - One of our favorite tricks for party nights was to inflate condoms to the size of small pillows. We would generate static electricity by rubbing them on wool sweaters, and then stick them to the darkened ceiling in the frat house living room before the co-eds arrived. During the evening, the electricity would dissipate and the condoms would gently drift down to the revelers beneath. Even the girls would join in the impromptu game of  "Rubber Volleyball" by batting them around the dance floor.


Steve  Foy - It wasn't until I had been to Ireland five times - mainly to play golf and secondarily to do genealogy research - that I fully believed that Steve was leveling with us when he told us his name was Irish and not Chinese. I learned that Foy is a common name in the Emerald Isle. Sorry for the sophomoric doubts, Steve.


Big Eaters - A post-party, hungry brother knows no honor. Padlocks secured shelves and small cages that cut the refrigerators in the frat house into private cooling areas. Everybody living in the house quickly learned that a six-pack or hunk of cheese could not be left unprotected.


Joe Merhton - The last Sig Bust I attended was at the ranch of Joe's family. I remember he was driving a horse-drawn carriage when the horse somehow panicked and took off through the woods. He brought it under control without injury or mishap but it was a scary moment for several us us. I also remember a few of us had too much beer; we were so hungry that we ate barbequed chicken long before it was done. It wasn't until years later that I could eat grilled chicken.


-          Wishing all the Alpha Sigs good health and much happiness, Buzz Nolan


Photo Gallery -


Members of Gamma Nu Chapter, Alpha Sigma Phi Fraternity, at Sacramento State College (now California State University – Sacramento) and their families and friends are cordially invited to provide “then and now” photos of fraternity brothers (family pictures are welcome!) for posting on a companion page, Photo Gallery. Click the colored type below to see an index to full-size pictures. Several are on this page as thumbnails. E-mail any digital photos to Lewis “Buzz” Nolan at lewis_nolan@yahoo.com. Mail any floppy disks, CD-ROMs or hard copy prints to him at 196 North Highland, Memphis, TN 38111. Include a self-addressed, stamped envelope if you want them returned after copying/scanning. If you don’t care to chance a possible loss in the mail, take original photos to a camera store for copying onto a disc.

Index to Photos

Pages From The Past -


A book published by the national Alpha Sigma Phi organization a quarter of a century ago contains what is believed to be a full roster of the Gamma Nu Chapter at Sacramento State College. The roster of the now-inactive chapter lists 99 names. The ASP book was purchased in 1981 by Gamma Nu's George Max (a packrat who also saved several Sac State yearbooks and other sources of historical information that are included, with gratitude, on the Siggy Raider website). To see the Gamma Nu Roster click the following link and scroll down the displayed page to see the heading and full list of names.

Gamma Nu Roster

Buzz Nolan’s Alpha Sigma Phi Pledge Manual somehow survived more than a dozen relocations across the country and back over the four decades that separated his 1962 initiation into Gamma Nu chapter at Sacramento State College and his ultimate move into his present home in Memphis, Tenn. Possibly due to Buzz’s nascent reportorial abilities - but more likely due to the demanding oversight of then-Pledge Trainer Al Mason - handwritten notes in the back of Buzz’s Pledge Manual preserve some of the early chapter history and list the officers from 1961-63. Click the colored type below to link to a companion page, Pages From The Past.

Pages From The Past

Michael Levison found his Gamma Nu membership card while going through some old papers in January, 2005. It was signed by Alpha Sigma Phi Grand Master Ralph Burns (now deceased). Click the colored type below to see the historic card.

Fraternity Membership Card

Little Sisters Caron (Case) Warddrip and Sally (Schock) Podesta penned songs for the Little Sisters to sing to the brotherhood in 1963-64. Caron recently came across a copy of the lyrics. Click the colored type below to see the lyrics.

Little Sisters Song

Link to the Mother House - -


The following suggestion was in an email sent by Michael Levison to several dozen fraternity brothers Sept. 9, 2004. "I invite everyone to go to www.alphasigmaphi.org. There you can register as a member of the Gamma Nu chapter. Once you are registered you can see information on other brothers who have also registered. The site has a complete list of everyone who was a member of the Gamma Nu chapter. A lot of the information is out-of-date but it serves as a good starting point." - Michael Levison. Click the colored type to link to the home page of the national fraternity.

Alpha Sigma Phi

Fraternity Drinking Songs -


We are the Siggy Raiders, Raiders of the Night.

We're dirty sons of bitches, we'd rather $%#@ than fight.


Here's to Pete, he's a damn fine guy.

Here's to Pete, he's a damn fine guy.

Here's to Pete, he's a horse's ass.

So drink chug-a-lug, chug-a-lug, chug-a-lug.

So drink chug-a-lug, chug-a-lug, chug-a-lug.

He certainly is a daisy, he drives the women crazy.

So here's to Pete he's a damn fine guy.

So drink chug-a-lug, chug-a-lug, chug-a-lug.

So drink chug-a-lug, chug-a-lug, chug-a-lug.


Kappa, Kappa Gamma, we are pissing on your lawn.

Kappa, Kappa Gamma, we are pissing on your lawn.

Kappa, Kappa Gamma, we are pissing on your lawn.

And we don't give a good, Goddamn.