Donald Chronister, Eric Chronister, and Karyn Alfonso

Recorded October 18, 2009 Archived October 28, 2009 28:52 minutes
0:00 / 0:00
Id: SCK001790



  • Donald Chronister
  • Eric Chronister
  • Karyn Alfonso

Venue / Recording Kit


StoryCorps uses Google Cloud Speech-to-Text and Natural Language API to provide machine-generated transcripts. Transcripts have not been checked for accuracy and may contain errors. Learn more about our FAQs through our Help Center or do not hesitate to get in touch with us if you have any questions.

00:01 I'll start off with some simple one have any Recollections of what it was like growing up in Merced during the Depression. I do one thing I noticed is a chance these days don't wear out there in in jeans and they were Koch's that you could buy it in store without the without the gene Siskel and I noticed the other day and he doesn't even know that he's having fun in Wisconsin cars in the dirt, you know anybody around there and he is having a great day and a great time with those passes. Remember when you some of the things I think I remember I'm not sure actually really true. So I remember you telling me that Uncle Jesse won't stick you on 2 train trestle over. What is a diva Creek or bear?

01:02 Mercury and left you up there to jump off or get hit by a three or four other teenage kids and that was what they did for fun to see how close to train with get to them before they jump into the water wasn't good swimmer. They jumped off 1st and just left you up there. They checked you out the bread.

01:34 What do you have any particular memories it stand out about you know, your mom and dad when you're a grown-up like with a strict or they lose their mother and it was a total of the father who is stretched. So I got I got both sides of the situation from schizophrenia. I think sometime when I play with kids or talk with kids sometimes I think this kid out of shut up and learn what it's wet. Next time. I be thinking we have fun kids while you can enjoy our summer said when you were in high school, where you at strongstown friend of mine the other day or went through heart went to school with me lady friend.

02:34 What kind of Steel is dying light's gone in school? And his name is Kenny deep. You can't even if Stacy said I don't know. He never said anyting. He never said anything. He was in kindergarten through 12th grade, and I never remember I'm staying here.

02:54 But you can still do that and get good grades done. Right? Did you have a good grade? But then you went to UCLA After High School. Where did you go straight and I like it and then I went to UCLA extension. See now you can't get into either of those schools without straight edge. So that wasn't the case. I know I often think about taxes if somebody here is it I went to UCLA. They probably think he must really be smart. Didn't have to be smarter than those days. All you had to do is if you took Spanish in high school when you went to UCLA Santa Ana Spanish and UCLA extension.

03:54 And it was cheap now it's expensive and you can't get in without staying on after after high school. So I guess you told me a little bit about about college you once told me that Mom got you a job working in the radiology department at UCLA. Was that as a student that was a spoon. You got me a job at the UCLA UCLA is radiation machines, which I did for about a half a day. And then I quit

04:40 Why you got him a job in the radiation department?

04:50 Professor after after after college I guess is then when you got drafted in the military is all right. I want to graduate school first and then where'd you go to graduate school? And I remember you telling me a story that the choices at the time where you either get sent to fight in Korea or where to start time. It was in Japan which was the unloading place for people that are going to be shipped to Gloria and saw at the time in the Tri-Cities were either Korea.

05:32 RM Japan and Korea Germany and I preferred to go to Germany. So I was on the lobby shipping Amazon 11 to go to Japan and I fear and you are into your friend because of Gloria and I thought how can I get out of this and somebody said, you know so-and-so Sergeant like cigars and he's in charge of the levy shipping love me. So I got a box of cigars and I gave them to him.

06:08 Do you think me and you took me Austin? I haven't gone to pan and put me on the lovely card to Germany. That box is why I'm here right now. That's a good move. I say so I'm not sure if this story is right to but I remember you telling me that that you, you know got promoted from private to private first class, but then got demoted when they were riding around with the sirens on your price car in Germany. I don't remember the sirens. I remember driving around asking chasing rabbits with a Jeep. That's probably the Genesis of that story. How can I put it stupid stuff goes on in the Army in I didn't I guess I was stupid enough to Trent things that I could change it.

07:08 I have an inspection Monday personal we're out on big whack when she's like camping out in place voice Cox.

07:16 I'm going to Sargent inspected my Razor and said his razor has been used. We're all standing at attention has been used.

07:30 Who is it who belongs to this razor? I said, I am. Sorry.

07:36 Rites of this razor is being used. I said, yeah. I know I haven't shaved with it this morning.

07:44 Hear what you shaved with your razor and you know, it is going to be inspected. How could you do that? Don't you know that dirty razor and make a dirty company and a dirty company can make a dirty platoon and a dirty platoon can cause

08:08 Disease. A whole Army and I said that's about the dumbest thing. I ever heard in my life or words to that effect. He said we'll see how dumb you are and the next Arizona shipment to go to.

08:28 Fort Sam, Houston, Texas

08:32 From Germany

08:36 Where the hell are they Antonio patriotism meetings or morale meetings where they need a discussion leaders, we ever involved in anything like that. There was one of the few people in college and

09:02 So when it came time for troop information and education time they call it.

09:10 Are they calling me to instruct the troops? And so I got time I had had courses in political science and history of the opportunities that I got got them to agree to to debate which to debate the Korean War which website is most correct in the Korean War the Korea or the United States.

09:49 True story getting really excited about it. You know this for the first time that they were in anywhere animated and I'm looking looking forward to the trip information and education propaganda is what it was but the way I taught her and had some life to I do know some spice to it and everything was going well until the captain of the platoon walked in and said what the hell is going on in here who told you you could start as communist propaganda like that like it was some guy called propaganda another location, but look at them.

10:37 In spirit living involved in what they're doing and he said where you think your involvement someplace else, but don't bring it in here.

10:49 Where did that happened was that during basic training in the states or is that in in Germany was in Germany in German most 2 years after you so where you already married when you in Germany?

11:07 Yeah, so when you came back from Germany, did you get a teaching job right away on an island for a while and see what do you know? What year that was? You came back from Germany 1953 here for quite a few odd jobs. I mean odd jobs online job I had was I was a selector in a brassiere Factory.

11:39 Merced County service station Ashley stayed in Monterey then when you got back, where did you guys may have you lived in Monterey for a while and then we went to 30 years old. I forget the name of the school that you at some point. You know, what are your Recollections of uni High maybe when you first start it off?

12:27 Is it a good place or a tough place? I thought it was rather strange because in Merced there any duke it out and sometimes it would be in the in the attraction of the day, you know, if people would turn out to see till until he's going to find someone to and when I got to Houston to when I got to excuse me.

13:00 I noticed that every once in a while and kid would come into the boys restroom in his face will be all bloody and women teachers in the school and expect me and a few other men to be referee and

13:17 Thing I notice about it till it's too strange to me as instead of the Dukan it out and settling there the dispute that way I would say nasty things about him and I always thought it would make a lot more sense if they would do it the Merced way.

13:37 This pound on each other for a while and get their nose bleed and get cleaned up and then go back and finish the day which is basically what happened why you were involved in like an Innovative Innovative program school and how many programs, but did you invent that are you in a couple of other students actually numbers Caldwell Williamson?

14:08 Couple of days

14:10 Where you going to go in and then I'll recruited some other people along the way.

14:18 That was interesting.

14:27 Stephanie told me it was.

14:31 Japanese language like that in school

14:37 So after University High you went to Monroe High where you stood in an equivalent want me in an equivalent, but a related program SWA school-within-a-school essentially IPS again transplanted to Monroe High or was it something different? But the same in many ways after you left uni High weather weather IPS continued on without you.

15:12 It went downhill and soon crapped out the main motivators of it. We're leaving or had left and saw that it was on its last legs. I think you told me once they paved Paradise and put up a parking lot.

15:33 I'm outside.

15:36 What's going to happen to them? You want to take a break and take a drink of coffee?

15:42 Let me see if I can.

15:44 Okay, I guess we're back. So we made it through your teaching career. And now I satin written down. Let's go at politics that I do you remember any of your involvement in the Peace and Freedom Party was a member of the Peace and Freedom Party president candidate neighborhood meeting like he was there. He probably promised everybody.

16:28 Well, that's cool. Are you talking about the baby doctor doctor?

16:39 Dr. Scott Resnick

16:41 Baby doctor

16:45 I know that's a fact check in when I can check it off. So, you know as far as organized religion, the only thing I remember is Us ending the Unitarian Church, you're going there anything about it turn to remember that anti-war and

17:15 They were against prejudice and discrimination and I thought I was a good place for your kids to go until they do I make a mold enough that you guys said that I could choose to go or not. And I prefer to sleep in and then the very next week you or Mom or someone said welfare doesn't have to go. I don't want to go then everyone stopped going to church after that.

17:46 My baby, that's just my recollection is pretty much what happened?

17:53 I have to tell you that but my only rent remembrances of church are that the building was shaped like an onion and I remember twice. We got there an hour before it opened because it was the day after daylight savings and we were too stupid to change our clocks and not only did we have to go to church but we had to go through it an hour before the damn thing even open.

18:17 Kind of memory that is waived in mind.

18:21 And where were you all this?

18:28 I remember you're traveling to Cuba and China. Do you know what year you did that?

18:40 Probably about 30 years ago. I'm trying to remember after Richard Nixon went to China. I just left China in the same trip.

19:03 No separate trips cuz it was illegal to go to Cuba at the time. I had to go by way of Mexico and if you went to China considered to be a communist.

19:15 But you were so I didn't really matter, right?

19:21 Doing the best you wouldn't have minded being called. Akane No, I can think of worse things collection of saying so the first thing I ever been down here that you remember teaching me to drive to remember hanging your right arm out the window. I can to generalities. Remember you're learning how to drive but I can't remember anything specific skirted the right-hand part cards. So close, but you had to whip your right arm and shirts are banging it on the side of your mirrors of the park the car but that's stuck with me any more than I do. Remember the very first time you took me to driving you tell me that take a left onto the freeway and you pick the on-ramp for the 405 where it dumps you onto the fast lane instead of this lowland just alike teach me how to drive.

20:21 Trial by fire. I think you probably don't remember that. I remember that.

20:33 Because it is like learning how to swim by throwing somebody in the water. Remember this to remember a time when you were called to my first grade class because I refused to wear lipstick makeup for the school play Don't that I can remember to call into the first grade because you had to have your mouth taped. Shut up.

21:06 And you approved of that. I do every complaint about it's not a son into her mother and they send us to acronis true. I miss mrs. Chronister. How would we ever do a thing like that? Well my goodness and that's that's why I was never

21:30 Chevalier I considered to be liars and she was considered to be that good teacher.

21:37 But I have something written down here that doesn't even appear to be a question. It's more of a statement. It just says never have my own kids. I took of understand the pleasure you might have taken and turning off the engine on the metal fishing boat lightning storm on Lake Tahoe.

21:57 Call Cindy.

22:01 Yeah you were you.

22:03 But why would you do it to me you were too little to care so I didn't bother you whenever anything about electronics are lightning bolts.

22:14 Not until he told me you remember playing gin rummy with me for money double or nothing multiple times until I already $1000000 timer timer status. That experience has taught me a lot about my own compulsive urges and about gambling and his serve me. Well my whole life one of these things we did invent some strange competition stuff. You already mentioned throwing the screwdriver through the dawgbone. Do you remember that? You remember these things spin the wing nut off the bolt game and forgotten about that had something bad on it or you can fly in for a long time. I remember that. Okay. So here's a question that I'm not sure if I remember hearing that

23:14 School counselor spilled the beans to Marsha that you aren't her her birth father did that actually happen? So I'm not sure if you're aware of it, but you know your physical movements were always so controlled that the whole family realized one day that we had actually never seen you run. Did you know that I think I ran when I sent three swimming pool heater was going to explode in our whole lives. So I came up I had heard one time that you came home and found the car missing cuz Marcia had stolen her that taking it on a on a joyride before she was all right against did that actually happen.

24:11 She came driving up in front of the house with two wheels on the Parkway and two weeks. Two wheels in the gutter. I am driving. I don't know about the only time I ever remember having it at the school called Mom at work one time about Marsha's arthritis arthritis yet.

24:42 So she didn't know what the diseases where that she was biting at.

24:49 35 hours

24:52 Okay. So the last one is I don't have much to say other than later years. You've had Parkinson's for many years now and it's you know slowed your physical capabilities. I was just wondering when you remember that you first felt something was physically wrong with respect to Parkinson's or did it. Come on slowly.

25:15 I don't remember any dramatic change, but I'm aware of the slowness and shakiness. We all have our problems. Are you woke up and said I better go to the doctor cuz nothing like that. So maybe help you out right maybe notice the slowness a little more maybe a middle-aged man who never read can beat the crap out of me at 10 every time.

25:53 Ice cream maker for 5 years old you're in the backseat of the car and you are acting up. I don't know whether Marshall was back there or not. But anyhow, I'm getting on my nerves and so I reach back and I took a whack at you and I don't know if it was you specifically are you in one of these kids in the backseat, but it's you and you in the back seat of the car and you started to cry and you said okay for you Daddy. Just wait till Sunday when you when you were a little boy and I'm a big man.

26:46 And see how you like it when somebody hits you.

26:52 Advance Auto

26:54 I don't like lightning and suck me or something even know where that was coming.

27:05 It it by your guys that must say if there's one thing my kids. Oh, yeah. It's the fact that we were raised and taught the difference between right and wrong and to think for herself and pretty much all without ever being hit from the expectation was to do the right thing afterwards. So, you know, I've never I guess I owe my kids one swipe swipe if you had me I could never hit him cuz he never had me know and we were fighting with each other and you got all frustrated and you turned around and lacus only halfway through you pulled your shoulder out screaming Agony and never even got to complete the never got to complete the head. So, how'd it go to Disneyland?

28:00 Do you have any special memories about any of your grandkids?

28:15 Do you have anything you'd like to share?

28:21 Add this to your favorite.

28:25 Child has your favorite grandchild is

28:29 I got to get the off button right now.

28:36 I'll start off with some simple one have any Recollections of what it was like growing up in Merced during the Depression Kansas these days don't wear out there in a jeans.