Bonnie Bennett Home

After graduation I taught 5th grade for four years, two in Covina and two in the San Jose area. For our teaching team, I taught the Great Books series and the Encyclopedia Britannica Spanish lessons. A cameraman from a San Jose TV station followed me around one summer when I spent six weeks studying Spanish in Mexico.
DeForrest and I were married at Claremont United Methodist Church in 1963 by Dr. John Cobb (who, it turned out, was famous in his field) . Our son, Alan, and his wife, Miriam, live 40 minutes away in Redwood City. Our daughter, Roberta, and 13 year old granddaughter, Sharon, live 20 minutes away in San Jose. When our children were growing up I did lots of volunteer work with their schools, dissecting organs for the Berkeley Project, raising money for the Kodaly music program, and putting together Grad Night parties for high school seniors.
For the past ten years DeForrest and I have attended the big Comdex computer shows in Las Vegas every November. We look forward to those trips. I enjoy volunteer work, and singing in the church choir. I’ve been the co-editor of our church newsletter for 18 years, and DeForrest joined in when we switched from the typewriter to the computer. We have just turned the job over to a new team. I’ve also edited two photo directories for the church, and two books of meditations written by members of the congregation.
Since DeForrest and I both attended Pomona, we have a special fondness for the place. I am still amazed by the far-reaching influence those four years have had on our entire lives. I found it exotic to be able to take classes at the other colleges – early childhood education class and Dr. Gray’s Shakespeare class at Scripps, for example. The concerts were amazing – Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau’s recital in Little Bridges, and foot-waving Glen Gould’s piano concert in Big Bridges. I remember the kind and patient Senor Pronko taking the Spanish club to the bull fight in Tijuana. I remember Dr. Learnihan fixing me with his steely eye and intoning, “Miss Bennett, do you believe in Providence?” I remember roller skating in Renwick, and swimming in evening water ballet shows. I finally got into the choir my senior year, and Mr. Russell conducted us in Brahms’ German Requiem which is still my favorite. Dr. Ferm had us write our credos, and then told us which denomination ours most closely matched. Mr. Sherman asked us to listen to all kinds of music and write down what we liked, and that’s when I first heard Dvorak’s New World Symphony. I still remember parts of the songs from the Spring Sing in the Greek Theater and the Plug Ugly.
I admire the current students’ willingness to get their hands dirty in the real world, and I do envy them their wonderful teacher who has them stage scenes from Shakespeare’s plays all over the campus. However, there was a certain charm in the more “genteel” time of the 1950’s and ‘60’s, when women wore dresses to class, house mothers ensured the dorms were quiet at night, and served dinners made us take a little time out. Inevitable trade-offs, I guess.
DeForrest and I plan to stay here in the small San Jose house we have owned since 1964. I read the San Jose Mercury News cover to cover, and talk back to the paper with letters to the editors. For one of those I won the “Silver Pen Award,” which netted me a dinner with the other winners, a tour of the presses, and a “silver” Cross pen. Five years ago I organized a book group, and the lively discussions once a month include all sorts of books. DeForrest and I like the concerts and opera, the museums and computer stores here. We like the people and the scenery. There’s a lot to do, and we know where it all is.