South Houston High School
SHHS to Honor Fallen Service Members as Part of Hall Dedication
|Thursday, March 3rd, 2011
Fallen service members to be inducted into the South Houston High School Hall of Honor: Edgar Page, Class of 1961; Austin Haverkamp, Class of 1962; Douglas French, Class of 1965; Gerald Blalock, Class of 1969; Zarian Wood, Class of 1999; and Armando Soriano, Class of 2002.
Six fallen heroes -- all former students of South Houston High School who gave their lives in service to their country -- will be honored tonight (March 3) when the school dedicates its new Hall of Honor and pays tribute to 55 of its most esteemed graduates.
Plaques will be unveiled for the six fallen soldiers - four from the Vietnam War era and one each from the Afghanistan and Iraq conflicts - in a special section of the new hall.
Four of the soldiers will be represented by parents and family members at the ceremony. They are Army Specialist Edgar Page, Class of 1961; Army Staff Sgt. Austin Haverkamp, Class of 1962; Marine Lance Cpl. Douglas French, Class of 1965; and Army Pfc. Armando Soriano, Class of 2002.
Page, who was killed in Vietnam in 1968, will be represented by his sisters, Alma Page Calk and Betty Page White. His niece, Mae Smythe Elementary Principal Quita Brown, will also attend.
Haverkamp, who was killed in Vietnam in 1968; will be represented by his brother, Eugene Haverkamp of Waco, and two sisters: Suzanne Londenberg of China Spring, and Janet Suarez of Humble. All are South Houston graduates.
French, who was killed in Vietnam in 1966, will be represented by his mother, Gwynn French, and his brother Randy French, Class of 1967. Mrs. French still lives in South Houston. Randy French is the police chief of Shore Acres.
Soriano, who died in Iraq in 2004, will be represented by his mother and father, Cleotilde and Enrique Soriano, both residents of Pasadena.
"From the time the Hall of Honor project was first proposed, it was our intent to pay tribute to those who have defended our nation's sovereignty and our right to pursue our dreams," said Dr. Steve Fullen, South Houston's principal.
"As future generations of Trojans pass down this Hall, it is our hope they will fully comprehend and appreciate how these fallen Trojans sacrificed their lives to defend our students' freedom to pursue their education."
The other fallen service members to be honored are:
• Army Spec. 6 Edgar D. Page, Class of 1961, killed in action in Vietnam, 1968.
• Marine Pfc. Gerald Blalock, Class of 1969, killed in action in Vietnam, 1968.
• Navy Petty Officer Zarian Wood, Class of 1999, killed in action in Afghanistan on May 16, 2010.
"This will be a special event for me personally," Eugene Haverkamp said, "and not just because of my brother. Douglas French was in my homeroom. And although he was a little bit younger, I was good friends with Gerald Blalock."
The school originally planned to honor five fallen service members. But when the Hall of Honor dedication was announced earlier this month, a South Houston graduate contacted the school district to provide information about Page. His plaque will be included with the others for the dedication.
"One of the great benefits of this project is the on-going process of discovery," said Al Carter, Communications Specialist for the Pasadena ISD, a 1970 graduate of South Houston and project coordinator for the Hall of Honor.
"So much information about our graduates has been muted by the passing of time. The deeds of so many are known to only a few. Part of our task has been to find those voices who know the full story of South Houston's legacy and give it amplification."
Information on Haverkamp, for instance, was provided by Norton White, a Hall of Honor inductee and a member of the same 1962 graduating class.
French's name appeared on a list of those inscribed on the Vietnam Wall in Washington. His brother, Randy, was then located through a South Houston alumni directory.
Blalock was killed the year before his South Houston class graduated in 1969. He left school early to join the Marines and died shortly after his arrival in Vietnam. He was memorialized in the school's 1969 Palladium yearbook.
The Hall of Honor dedication promises to be one of the biggest on-campus events in the 54-year history of the school. Dozens of government, business and education officials are expected to attend as well as dozens of additional South Houston graduates.
Of the 47 living inductees, 37 have confirmed that they will attend. Six others will be represented by family members. Inductees Dr. Nathan Isgur and Dr. Paul Zanowiak, both deceased, will be presented by family members.
Dr. Isgur, a 1964 graduate who gained international fame as a theoretical physicist, will be represented by his brother, Marvin Isgur, a 1970 graduate who is also being inducted. Marvin is the U.S. Federal Bankruptcy Judge for the Southern District.
Dr. Zanowiak, a 1965 graduate who combined dentistry with his love of travel to provide clinics in Third World areas, will be represented by his mother, Mary Zanowiak, and his daughter, Kendall Antonelli of Austin.
Among the other inductees expected to attend are Richard Willard, Class of 1965, who served as Assistant Attorney General of the U.S. in the Reagan Administration; Michael Lindsey, Class of 1969, a noted anti-trust and intellectual properties attorney based in Los Angeles; Susan Cobb Duff, Class of 1971, the mother and former manager of actress/singers Hilary and Haylie Duff; and two Channel 13 reporters - Deborah Wrigley, Class of 1969, and Cynthia Cisneros, Class of 1978.
Another inductee from the Class of 1978, State Rep. John Davis, will also attend.
Inductee Emory Gadd, a 1965 graduate who serves as youth minister of Sagemont Church in the South Belt area, will deliver an acknowledgement address on behalf of all the inductees.
The Hall of Honor will feature a display of inductee plaques on a 30-foot wall adjacent to the Reinartz Center just beyond the front entrance to the school.
The inductees were selected by the school's baccalaureate committee, a group of faculty members who are also charged with selecting an honored alumnus and an honored former faculty member each spring for the school's baccalaureate ceremony.
The committee spent nearly a year consulting with alumni groups, checking records and screening candidates before settling on the inaugural Hall of Honor class of 55.
Committee bylaws call for the selection of from one to five additional honorees each May. The committee will meet in late spring to consider new inductees.
If additional fallen service members are confirmed, Carter said, they will be added to the Hall of Honor immediately.
SOUTH HOUSTON HIGH SCHOOL
HALL OF HONOR INDUCTEES
(Graduation class in parentheses)
Donald Meador (1959): Senior pastor, John Wesley Methodist Church, Houston; Leadership Council, Texas United Methodist Church Conference.
Dr. Ron Rucker (1960): National championship basketball coach and vice-chancellor, San Jacinto College; past chairman, Pasadena Chamber of Commerce.
James R. Smith (1960): Pasadena ISD teacher, principal and administrator; Pasadena ISD Distinguished Alumnus for 2008.
Larry Crow (1962): Former police chief and mayor of the City of La Marque.
Dr. Harriet Durr Romo (1962): Sociology professor and researcher, University of Texas-San Antonio; director, UTSA's Mexico Center; wife of Ricardo Romo, UTSA president.
Genia Long Ripley (1962): Manager, Pasadena ISD Police Department operations.
Timothy Shaunty (1962): Agricultural researcher and economics teacher, Texas A&M and South Houston High School; president, Texas Council on Economic Education.
Norton White (1962): Businessman; South Houston High School Scholarship Executor for the Class of 1962.
R. Joel Swanson (1963): Senior partner, Baker Botts, Houston; listed among Texas Super Lawyers.
Dr. Nathan Isgur (1964): Renowned theoretical physicist; winner of the 2001 Sakurai Prize in physics; member, the Royal Society of Canada; honored posthumously.
Cheryl Williams Bolen (1964): Journalist and author of historical romance novels.
Herman Williams (1964): Real estate investor and businessman; co-owner of Rountree Williams Mens Wear; past chairman, Pasadena Chamber of Commerce; member, Pasadena ISD Education Foundation; Pasadena ISD Distinguished Citizen for 2007.
Bob Allen (1965): College football standout, Texas Tech University; businessman and South Houston High School benefactor.
Emory Gadd (1965): Youth minister and community counselor, Sagemont Church; Pasadena ISD volunteer; Pasadena ISD Distinguished Citizen (2005).
Richard Willard (1965): Assistant attorney general of the U.S. from 1983-88 under President Reagan; Chief of the Civil Rights Division of the Department of Justice; currently a law partner, Steptoe & Johnson, Washington.
Dr. Paul Zanowiak (1965): Dentist, humanitarian and Himalayan adventurer; founder, The Smile Store; established free dental clinics in Third-World areas; Pasadena ISD Distinguished Alumnus (2004); honored posthumously.
Cynthia Bryant (1966): Professor, University of Texas Law School; child and family advocate; task force member, Texas Supreme Court.
Lois Williams (1966): Director of oil and gas lease management, Amoco Corp.
Wayne Adams (1967): Former principal, Pasadena High School; member, Pasadena ISD Education Foundation.
Suzanne Covington (1967): State District Court Judge, Austin.
Dr. Darrell Harris (1967): Minister, affiliated with the Robert E. Webber Institute for Worship Studies in Orlando, Fla.; founder of Star Song Communications, a prominent Christian music recording company in Nashville, later acquired by music giant EMI.
Dr. Janie Hickerson Thielemann-Downs (1968): Professor, author, consultant for teaching training, University of Houston-Downtown.
Wayne Lutz (1968): Lt. Colonel, U.S. Air Force (retired); former chief test pilot, Boeing; aerospace faculty, Texas A&M.
Herman Munster III (1968): Scholarship executor for South Houston High School, Class of 1968; chairman, Greater Houston Youth For Christ.
Dr. Marvin Baza (1969): Optometrist; founder and director of the Pasadena Eye Center.
Terry Brotherton (1969): Real estate investor; member, Pasadena ISD Education Foundation; past chairman, Pasadena Chamber of Commerce; Pasadena ISD Distinguished Citizen (2009).
Michael Lindsey (1969): Partner, corporate development, Paul Hastings Law Firm, Los Angeles; Authority on anti-trust and intellectual properties issues.
Dr. Karen Sherman Dorris (1969): Senior pastor, Faith United Methodist Church, Richmond; Director, Texas United Methodist Church Conference.
Deborah Wrigley (1969): Reporter, KTRK-TV, Channel 13, Houston.
Donella Coffey (1970): Production assistant, TV and movie projects, Los Angeles.
Marvin Isgur (1970): Federal Bankruptcy Court Judge, Houston.
Dr. Mary Lund (1970): Author, lecturer and specialist in family counseling and dispute resolution matters, Los Angeles.
Gary Moss (1970): College basketball coach and high-school principal; member, Sam Houston State University Athletics Hall of Honor.
Ken Vanway (1970): Authority on estate and corporate planning; the Vanway Law Firm, Austin.
Susan Cobb Duff (1971): Motion picture producer; mother and manager of singer/actresses Haylie and Hilary Duff.
Dr. Lupita Palos (1971): Assistant professor and researcher, M.D. Anderson Center, Houston.
Dr. Gregory Fuller (1972): Professor of pathology, chief of neuropathology, M.D. Anderson Hospital, Houston.
Susan Spurlock Keiser (1972): Global head of trust and securities, LaSalle Bank Corp., a division of Bank of America; president, LaSalle National Trust of Delaware; board chairman for ABN AMRO Trustees Ltd. for both London and Dublin.
James Carter Hall (1976): Innovator and patent-holder in semiconductor systems; company start-up specialist.
Wes Hubert (1976): College football standout, All-Southwest Conference center, University of Texas; named to the school's All-Decade Football Team.
Cynthia Cisneros (1978): Reporter, KTRK-TV, Channel 13, Houston.
John Davis (1978): Member, Texas House of Representatives, District 129.
John O. Harris (1978): Real estate developer and entrepreneur; owner, John O. Harris Properties, Pasadena.
Dr. Ann Lutz Pearson (1981): Author and editor; English professor, San Jacinto College.
Dana Johnson Philibert (1985): Businesswoman, Philibert Allstate Insurance Agency; former Pasadena City Councilwoman; member, Pasadena ISD Education Foundation; current chairman, Pasadena Chamber of Commerce.
Chris Tremie (1988): Major league baseball player; catcher for the Chicago White Sox, Texas Rangers, Pittsburgh Pirates and Houston Astros.
Mary Bowen (1991): Internationally known mezzo soprano, New York City Opera and other companies.
Jason Jolliff (1992): Major, U.S. Marines, F-18 fighter pilot; decorated Iraqi theater veteran.
Dr. Justin Regner (1993): Surgeon, professor of surgery, University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences; innovator in medical devices and procedures.
Edgar D. Page (1961): Specialist, U.S. Army, killed in action, Vietnam, April 28, 1968.
Austin William Haverkamp (1962): Staff Sergeant, U.S. Army, killed in action, Vietnam, Sept. 28, 1968.
Douglas Robert French (1965): Lance Corporal, U.S. Marine Corps, killed in action, Vietnam, July 21, 1966.
Gerald Edward Blalock (1969): Private First Class, U.S. Marine Corps, killed in action, Vietnam, May 17, 1968.
Zarian Andre Wood (1999): Petty Officer, U.S. Navy, killed in action, Afghanistan, May 16, 2010.
Armando Soriano (2002): Private First Class, U.S. Army, killed in action, Iraq, Feb. 1, 2004.
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