OCThen reader "TimS" who grew up in Santa Ana submits some memories of hanging out in Irvine Park during the 1970s with the van clubs, and wants to know if anyone else has similar memories...
Hi All.And then he goes on to talk about dealing with gangs and tough guys in the schools of Santa Ana...
I have spent most of my 49 years living in OC, and have really enjoyed some of these comments.
I was wondering if anybody remembers anything about the van clubs that used to have weekend night, or caravans, way in the back of Irvine Park back in the early to mid 70's?
I was sort of a wild wander as a kid (bad home life...), and at 12 or 13, I tagged along with someone, who owned a really tricked out Ford Econoline van, to a Van rally that I recall was way in the back of Irvine Park. It seemed to be a long ways out there, but as an adult, now it doesn't seem like Irvine park extends as far as I remember traveling. Do any of you remember this? The guy who let me tag along with him and his girlfriend was a long haired guy with the first name of Randy, and, at that time, worked at the gas station on the corner of Main and St. Gertrude Plc.
I also wanted to comment to those who have posted about violence in OC HSs. I went to Saddleback and Mountain View HSs in the mid to latter half of the 70s, and there was some violence from blacks and Mexicans, and sometimes even the sportos. Having long blonde hair, and a smart mouth, I got my ass kicked more than once before I finally learned how to stare guys down and act like a bad ass so people would leave me alone. That didn't always work though because with the mexicans it was always a gang of at least 3 or 4 to 1, so you always ended up on the losing end. I can clearly remember being 14 and walking down Warner Ave from McFadden Jr High, and how I flipped off the 4 low riders who had just said something foul to me about being white and having blonde hair, and how these guys flipped a U turn in the middle of Warner and came after me. I ended up being thrown into a rose bush after they caught me, tore my books in half and pounded on me for a while.Click on "Post a Comment" below if you have anything to share...
Anyway, I took ROP at Valley HS, and had trouble with the blacks hanging out in the parking lot every time I went on the campus from the greenville entrance, and knew white guys from SA HS who were always fighting with Mexicans, so I always viewed both of those schools as being much worse than Saddleback, or even Mountain view, which was a continuation school. Nobody was ever shot at that time, but some guys got knifed, or seriously pounded on. However, there was one guy at saddleback that I will never forget. He was dark skinned, but I couldn't be sure if he was mexican or samoan. But he used to hang out with an entourage of mexican semi-toughs. This guy clearly knew martial arts at that time, and used to wear some strange flamboyant clothes, like a cape. I later realized he wore the loose baggy pants so he could kick really high. Anyway, I witnessed this kooky guy start, and finish, several fights with big guys that usually got left alone.
A lot of us hung out at Memorial Park, and saw first hand that we had a lot of Mexican gangs rising up including the Delhi boys, F-Troop, Shades of Brown, and others from north Santa Ana. Some of these guys were pretty hard core, in my view, and I think were early Mexican mafia.
What a childhood that was! That's why I joined the navy at 17, and got out of dodge as quickly as I could.
TimS from Woodland Plc, Santa Ana.