Trippeer, Jennifer Anne Jacoby: Munich Elementary School

Munich Elementary School was K-7. It was an old warehouse building that was converted to a school. Those of us who attended – our Dads were assigned to Warner Kaserne. We had a bombed-out house that sat in the middle of the playground with one small bit of yellow tape wrapped around it to keep us from exploring. On one side of the playground was a Mercedes Benz factory or dealership, not sure which. They had the cars parked along the chain link fence that bordered the school. But by 1965 the peace symbol was big and the hood ornaments began to disappear along the fence. So then the cars were backed in which prevented further mysterious theft. I was there March 1965 to finish 6th grade (my third school that year). My best teacher ever was Alice Kakimoto for 7th grade. She was remarkable and brought to life a terrified, insecure, painfully shy 12-year-old and I’ll go to my grave thankful for her presence in my life. The school colors were black and gold and the eagle was our mascot. My mom threw out my pennant from the school.

Whitaker, George: Ernest Harmon High School, Ernest Harmon AFB, Stephenville, Newfoundland, Canada

I was a student at Harmon High School from January 1964 until May 1966, and was the last graduate (alphabetically and otherwise) of the last class of the school before the base closed and was returned to the Canadians. The building itself was fairly new and modern. Our principal was Mr. Cecil Haddox, who was over both Harmon and the DODDS School up at Goose Bay Labrador (a part of Newfoundland).  Our Assistant Principal was Mr. Robert Kefauver, the brother of Tennessee Representative and Senator Estes Kefauver.  My favorite teachers at Harmon were Miss Judith Okada, Miss Johanna Scharmen, Miss Margaret Clinton, Miss Sara Younts and Mr. Russell Cobbs.  (more…)

Nash, Allison: Dorm Memory from Korea

We were living on base at Two Ranch Station, near Petaluma, California, when my dad got orders for Hialeah Compound in Pusan, Korea. My mom was disappointed, hoping for Europe. When she heard that there was no high school on base, that I would be shipped off to a dorm starting in the 9th grade she was devastated. I was delighted! My dad ran the house like a boot camp, so I saw freedom in my future!


Senechal, Larry: Verona, Italy – Borgo Milano DoDDS

I attended Borgo Milano 1960-62. My English teacher was Beverly Bloomquist. She transferred to Vicenza HS. Mr. Generalli was my math teacher. Mr. Croce was my history teacher. Mr. Doe was my science teacher. Mrs. Devries was my art teacher and Mrs. Lynch my music teacher. I didn’t realize it at the time, but it was the absolute best and served me well academically as I subsequently transferred to another DoDDS school and then finished my junior and senior years in a private sector high school. I have nothing but the fondest memories of my teachers and the lasting friendships I made there. In fact, one of my best friends lives in my neighborhood here in Seattle, and when we get together it is always a great time. Imagine, we have known one another for 62 years!!! (more…)

Medders, Kim: Karlsruhe American High School

Ever wonder what your students take away from you with them as they depart into the world? The Ides of March being tomorrow, I thought I’d share this little brain dripping with you. Enjoy!

“This was the noblest Roman of them all: All the conspirators, save only he, did that they did in envy of great Caesar…” Tomorrow being the “Ides of March” made famous in Shakespeare’s play, Julius Caesar, reminded me of two gifted educators I had while attending Karlsruhe American High School in Germany in the 1960’s.


Smalls, Deirde: Erlangen Elementary: 1969-1972

It was October of 1969 when we arrived in Erlangen Germany and I was in the middle of my 3rd Grade year. If memory serves me correctly, Erlangen elementary was located outside of the back gate of Ferris Barracks. I remember the bus going through the Post gates from the housing area and out the back gate to arrive at school. The school was an old, white one-story structure with lots of windows in the classrooms. The scenery would sometimes prove to be a welcomed distraction at times.


Burch, Leslie A.: My Introduction to the Overseas Dependent Schools in 1960

(The beginning of an improbable career)

I became aware of the DoD schools in the 1950s during my military tour in Stuttgart, Germany. I noted that there were many school-aged dependents on the Kaserne, and I was curious about their education, so I asked a married colleague who lived in family housing about their schooling. From him I learned that many locations in Germany had schools, and that many teachers were recruited from the US. Before my tour was over, I knew enough about the dependent schools to be interested in working in one for a couple of years.


Burch, Leslie A.: Anakara Dorm: Spring 1961

On the last three-day weekend of the school year, we decided to take the dormies on a camping trip to Cappadocia and the Göreme Valley. Our plan was to leave early Saturday morning, because it would take at least five hours to get there. We planned to camp in the cave-like homes that early dwellers had carved out of the porous tufa formations created at some time in geologic history by volcanic action. Among early dwellers from the 2nd century A.D. were Christians who lived there through the Crusades. Moslem rulers actually encouraged Christians living in the Mediterranean coastal settlements to move inland or perish during ensuing wars with crusading armies from Europe.


Murph, Timothy: Böblingen, Germany

We arrived at Panzer Kaserne in Böeblingen Germany in January 1961, after my Dad was transferred there from Fort Sill…we lived on the economy for the first year, January 1961 to spring 1962, when quarters became available for us on post…I started school in the 1st grade in the 1962-1963 school year…up until that time I had been an only child, and had spent all my time with only my Mom up until then… (more…)

Martinko, Agnes: I Need to Sleep

I need to sleep, but I’m too excited! I leave tomorrow, August 8,1960, to teach American children of servicemen stationed in Germany. The train leaves at 7 am, All night long, I anticipate what it might be like. In the morning, a neighbor takes me to the station. What a surprise! Brothers, sister, nieces and nephews are all there. No tears just jubilation. My brother puts a movie camera he got at a flea market around my neck. It weighs a ton! “All aboard!” Off we go. I need to sleep, but I want to say goodbye to my beautiful Pennsylvania hills.


Lee (Caballero), Carmelita: Orleans, France: 1959-1962

I was a student at the high school (both Maison Fort and Foret D’Orleans) in Orleans, France during my father’s Army service. We arrived when I was in the 6th grade in 1959, and stayed until May of 1962. Honestly, they were the best years of my life as far as being in an enchanted place, and loving the country where we were stationed.


Perlmutter, Jim: Orleans High School: 1963

Our family arrived in Orleans in October of 1962. I was a senior (my 4th high school) and welcomed to a most warming class. We lived for a while at the Hotel Bovaird right across the George V bridge in Olivet. The school bus stopped there and our driver was named Jacques. He would shake hands on entry and departure in the morning and afternoon with every rider and knew all the kids’ names. We then moved on the economy to Fleury-les-Aubrie. What I also recall from those rides is that we had kids from 1st grade to seniors on board which made for interesting friendships. At the time, October 1962, the Cuban Missile Crisis was ongoing and MPs were guarding the Foret d’ Orleans compound and occasionally boarded the buses. In the summer of 63 we moved to Olivet housing.

Johnson, JoAnn K.: 1967-1968 Libya Evacuation

It was the first Monday in June, 1967 when my students and I became aware from our playing field that many fighter planes were flying NORTH across the Mediterranean Sea instead of south into their training area in the desert. By noon we got the word about the Six Day-War as it became known: The Arab-Israeli War. This war was actually fought from June 5-6 until June 10th. (more…)

Johnson, JoAnn K.: Wheelus Air Base, Libya: 1966-1967

While teaching in the Palatine, Illinois school district, a position as a physical education teacher at Wheelus Air Base in Libya for the 1966-67 school year was offered to me. I accepted and arrived at Wheelus AB amidst a “ghibli”, a sandstorm off the desert, and my sponsors told me not to touch anything as it was terribly hot. My sponsors got me settled into the BOQ closest to the Mediterranean Sea, about 3 blocks away. It was one of several BOQs where teachers were housed. (more…)

Robinson, Danny: Kubasaki High: 1967-68

I was a freshman at Kubasaki Junior High School in 1967-68. During that year we were visited by Fess Parker (Walt Disney’s Davy Crockett). Also, one of my favorite teachers was John Chapman (Civics teacher). He would organize host nation partnerships with local schools that we would visit on Saturdays and spend overnights at local hostels with Okinawa students. Mr. Fatarosi (so?) was a wonderful teacher as well.


Miller, Kathleen: Chateauroux American High: 1959-1965

I think the years I was there 1959-1965 were the fullest and most solid. The school seemed to be well organized and we didn’t want for much.

It is really hard to describe the mini culture that made up the school, of note was the collective nature of being “foreigners” in another country, living on a military base and all the rules that went with that, the efforts to make this a “normal” American high school experience, the sticking together as children of military, the obvious class distinction between enlisted and officers’ kids, the differences of living on or off the economy, and, of course. the microcosm of the various housing areas.


Teets, Karen: Chateauroux: 1960-1964

Bonjour mes amis. Je m’appelle Karen Teets.

My family and I moved to Chateauroux in the spring of 1960. My father, M/Sgt. William E. Teets, my mother, Lillian, my sister, Marilyn, and I lived in Chateauroux until 1964. We arrived in France when I was 12 years old and my sister turned 13 the day we landed in Paris. We lived at the Hotel du Faisan for about six weeks until our house on the economy was ready for us to move into.


Hilley, Don: Chateauroux: 1962-1964

My Recollections of My Time in Chateauroux

I was 16 years old and enjoying life in sunny Southern California (Redlands – my father, Willam A. Hilley, was stationed at Norton Air Force Base) when my Dad was assigned to go to Chateauroux, France. I was desperate not to go. My life was playing basketball in Redlands. I did not want that life to be disrupted. I got my driver’s license when I was 16 in California, and was enjoying the “freedom” that wheels brought. It shocked me when I found out that the driving age in France was 18. I was bummed out about that. I was enjoying some success with basketball in California, and when I found out that our family was moving to France, I wasn’t sure they even had basketball teams there.


Barnett, Sam: Kwajalein: 1969-1972, 1974-1977

At Kwajalein, we went barefoot into the classrooms. We lined our flip flops up on the sidewalk outside the classroom. All kids either walked or rode their bike to school. There were no buses and very few cars. The school was like a two-story cinderblock hotel with exterior hallways. As any red-blooded male child in a tropical paradise, all I remember thinking about at school was getting out of school. I left Kwaj as an eight-year-old and that was a while ago.

McHenry, Sue: Orleans, France: 1963-1967

The day after arriving in France after sailing on the USSS United States, I became a freshman in high School at La Foret d’Orleans, an old WWII American hospital set up as the school for military and civil service dependants, K-12, all 600 of us. I think that there were American dependants, not associated directly with the Army who also went to school with us. Of course, high school years are incredibly memorable, so there’s so much to say about living in Orleans for 4 years.


Cuoco (Nadeau), Judy: Orleans High School

My family and I moved to Orleans in the summer of 1959. I was a student from 8th through 10th grade. The friendships I made there are still sustained today. A group of girls all started together and many left at the same time at the end of the 10th grade. I will always consider OHS my high school and have many fond memories of “the 8th grade girls” as we now call ourselves. We lost touch over the years and were ecstatic to find each other again at Dave’s first reunion in Washington DC…no one wanted to sleep we just talked and talked. My husband and I have been to most of the reunions since then and he has been added as an honorary member of the OHS family.


Walton, Susan: Orleans Elementary School: 1963-1964

I went to 4th grade in Foret d’Orleans in 1963-64. The elementary school was in the furthest wing of classrooms from the front of the school… My 4th grade classroom was on the top floor, on the side nearer to the playground. We had recess in the chain-link fenced, dirt yard beside the school and I can remember kids linking arms and chanting, “Hey, hey, get out of my way, I just got back from the U.S.A.” I remember being a volunteer in the school library, which was on the bottom floor nearer the middle of the wings. We, volunteers, used an index sorter for the cards of the checked-out books. Those cards came out of the flaps inside the books and we stamped the Due Date on the pocket, pasted inside the cover, that held the card.


Sullivan, John: Iceland Elementary: 1965-1966

5th Grade Class at Iceland Elementary School in 1965-1966.My sister Maura’s 5th grade class picture. It was taken in her Quonset hut classroom on the base in Keflavik Iceland 1965-66 school year. Maura…3rd in from the left wanted to make sure that everyone saw her broken foot cast so she stuck it out front! Grades 1-6 were in Quonset huts on the base…Each Quonset hut was divided into two sections…The front was the classroom… and the back was a student activity area where you did exercises…play music… hang out…You needed the activity area because Iceland was chilly in winter! (more…)

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