Wallace Smith and By Thao

Recorded February 19, 2020 Archived March 10, 2020 01:06:18 minutes
0:00 / 0:00
Id: lsk002314


Wallace Smith (82) is interviewed by By Thao (no age given) about his family history and early life in Alaska as well as his experiences teaching in Alaska.


  • Wallace Smith
  • By Thao

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00:00 December 24th, 1937 in the Alaska railroad Hospital long before there was a Providence Hospital Community Hospital a

00:17 Anyhow, that was a long time ago when everybody used to wear a long shirt long pants, I am a

00:29 Retired educator. I taught 28 years of East Anchorage High School.

00:37 Then finish that up not being really.

00:41 Smart enough to do everything else spent 11 years and attending up teaching.

00:48 Computer aided drafting at the University of Alaska Anchorage School of Engineering

00:55 I retired from that job.

00:59 In 2001 because I had an opportunity.

01:06 I'm going to getting off the track I go to bed. So so today we're going to get our mr. Wallace going to share story with us. And my name is by Thao I am 29 years old. So I'm actually the interviewer The Listener. However, you want to call me and we are here and Anchorage Alaska at Providence Family Medicine Center, and we're very happy that mr. Wallace. Mr. Smith is here sharing his story.

01:54 My family is my father. My father passed away in 1981. I have not quite reached his status in life. So if you want to call me something you can call me late for lunch or just playing Wally will we will go with Wally house that the floor is yours and self-lacing. We are we are ready.

02:21 As I was I taught 29 years in 19 or 2 2001 had an opportunity to

02:35 Test out as a participant in the

02:42 The holding of the 2002 Winter Olympics and I had to go down to Soldier Hollow. I was a group of about 28 folks that first. Well, I was not a participant in the Olympics. I was one of the individuals that helped put it on.

03:02 Are there 28 of us that left Anchorage primarily in the cross country skiing venue?

03:10 There is people from Fairbanks from Trapper Creek.

03:16 From Anchorage to Palmer area

03:21 And we went down in 2001 and had a workshop for about 2 weeks. And where did you guys go we went to what is known as Soldier Hollow in Utah, which is probably would be South South southeast of

03:41 Salt Lake City

03:44 And that's where that then you for that cross country ski was going to be held.

03:50 And in 2002, I went back and spent.

03:54 Well before I got there I came home and my wife.

04:02 Headache increased we have to take this up because of my age. I was going to be able to participate in the situation like this.

04:12 Very many times in my life. I'm going back to sleep even farther after returning from high school as well as we have we have three daughters two of them which were cross-country skiers in high school. I

04:28 Belong to a group called The Purple grunts.

04:31 And then we evolved into the green grunts. These were the individuals that were they

04:38 Books that put on the cross country ski races out at Kincaid or any place here in Anchorage.

04:47 We help put on skiing venues. Other than that.

04:59 Being footloose and fancy-free, I guess after having a summers off. I spending a lot of time helping Maine to etain Cross Country Trails both on Hillside as well as Kincaid Park.

05:15 And the race Trails for tour of Anchorage.

05:22 Needless to say I came back.

05:27 But I had to make some money before I could go out.

05:31 2

05:34 To the ski races in for 2002 Winter Olympics, so I spent

05:41 I think eight or nine weeks had a gold mine and a place called Nyack which is

05:49 Which would be Nyack would be.

05:54 East Northeast of Bethel

05:59 And it's not a native name Nyack is in Yak. Which stood for New York? Alaska is a gold mine.

06:09 It was a has been in operation through a number of

06:17 Families

06:19 4 number gears. In fact it was the only one in World War II that actually was producing gold during the war because it had its own electrical facilities primarily water power.

06:33 That

06:36 The produce our own electricity and they had a a dredge that was run run on electric power.

06:45 And it was as my father had been a minor in his early days. I always thought it'd be great to see what it was like to be a miner.

07:00 So I spent flies I said eight or nine weeks are and I find out if it's working seven twelves.

07:09 And it's 62. I think her a 63. I was not a really happy camper. It's not it's a little out of my league to be putting in that many hours, but I did it.

07:23 I had a most enjoyable time off in that I brought 62 or 63 USB type B. 2001-2002 * 82 anyhow, give or take

07:50 And I learned an awful lot of boat.

07:56 Working and it's granted the type of gold mining that my father did was a lot different than what I did I get you to make enough money that when I got back home my wife figured out that

08:12 712 sure that in a long time I ever reach out making $7.55 an hour, which isn't what you'd classified as top wages believe me, but it was enough that I could get down to.

08:27 And that's just looking expensive working to the Winter Olympics. I wouldn't miss that for anything. It was great.

08:38 Coming back home after the Olympics.

08:45 Dee Devlin

08:47 Back crack

08:49 My marijuana originally left graduate from high school here in Anchorage Anchorage high school. That was before there's a western and Eastern Diamondback Bartlett or whatever was it just one there was only one high school.

09:08 I went I thought it I wasn't.

09:16 I wasn't told that at that I'd be going to college it was assumed that I would or I'd be going to get a a a craft.

09:28 Where I could actually walk and be something.

09:33 A Humanity rather than deficit

09:44 I started out by going to Waze who first boil.

09:50 I'll be back here before that.

09:55 I joined the United States Army Reserves while I was in high school because that was shortly after Korean conflict. It was a war I don't care if you can call it. Whatever name it was a war not a conflict. But anyhow.

10:11 And I thought well, there's a good chance. I might be pretty high on the list to get drafted. So I figured I needed something.

10:22 2

10:27 Just in case any help was in a unit that was had several of my ex teachers at Anchorage high school and among them was another fellow that was

10:43 But you said you need to go to a good military school. So I was all set to go to the school call The Citadel in Charleston South Carolina where they were going to make me an Officer and a Gentleman good luck on that video is almost all set to

11:04 Sure thing about going to school. My dad says what will see you next summer me and I can't come home for Christmas.

11:13 Nope cost too much. So I feel like we'll wait a second. I need to select a school that's much closer to home. So I selected Washington State College at that time, which is now Washington State University.

11:30 And I was going to knock the world died by being the world's greatest electrical engineer.

11:35 At that time the electrical engineers students all you could have done if I them.

11:43 1000 feet away from them because they're all had a

11:47 Ace lipstick a

11:52 What?

11:57 What is it called comb such a device for figuring things. It's a slide rule and

12:10 After

12:12 Playing games of that. I just discovered all I was creating was a paper trail.

12:19 I also how old were you when you decided to okay, 18 or 19 and during this time. I

12:38 Of course my migraines sort of slipped and like many freshmen and I had to discuss my being at Washington state with the dean of men.

12:49 On way I should still remain going to school at Washington State University or washing it or Washing State College?

12:57 Then of course I had to come home and explain to my father.

13:02 William Anderson Smith why I should remain alive

13:07 Because if having the grades that I had and to get up Mega make up my mind what I was going to get serious or not.

13:21 Went back in and I did some I went into in Boca vocational education industrial Arts it was

13:31 And at that time it was rather interesting at Washington State.

13:37 All of the drafting was taught by the architectural drafting program engineering all of the mechanical engineering or mechanical work such as lathes work machine welding founded work was all taught by the mechanical engineering department.

13:56 And any of the woodwork who started by the industrial Arts Ariel, so I actually got crushed train whole lot of place both it with Engineers mechanical civil and Architectural.

14:12 And I end up getting a degree in vocational education or is it was called that time industrial Arts one time before that it was called.

14:24 Woodworking and was called with Manual Arts and it went into industrial Arts now. It's a vocational.

14:32 Training it's working with your hands.

14:37 I actually too many people much to my chagrin many of the people I taught in education had never worked with their hands in their entirety.

14:50 Which is actually their loss.

14:56 As I said, we've had three daughters.

15:00 Whitney the oldest is an engineer in Bozeman Montana right at the present time.

15:06 She and her husband own a construction firm.

15:09 Kelly the second daughter that got a degree in Biochemistry from Montana State University

15:19 Went on I got a Bachelor's or master's degree in business and a second master's degree in.

15:29 Accounting

15:31 And threads present time she is a

15:36 Auditor, I guess you'd call it or a

15:41 Individual work for the Jewish eighth judicial it.

15:45 Department of the state of Colorado

15:50 She she has suffered from this is a side note. She's suffered from juvenile rheumatoid arthritis.

16:04 And she has made 23 trips between

16:11 Her being 17 and graduated from high school and service High School.

16:17 Turn Anchorage made 23 trip round trip trips to Children's orthopedic Orthopedic Hospital in Seattle friend fight this scourge.

16:35 And what's so surprising that she's probably the most

16:42 Overachieved

16:44 Over-educated

16:48 Worker in this killed that's a little moronic down to earth.

17:01 Degree in Earth Science, and she has a biologist for the state of Alaska.

17:08 Department of Fish and Game

17:12 Department of Fish and Game for right now. She resides in Palmer where she is responsible for all of the

17:23 The lakes of how would you say access to lakes and streams that the last guy has in it for fishing.

17:33 In-N-Out

17:34 My wife is a was a nurse at Providence hospital for 37 years.

17:48 She also worked in the neonatal area.

17:53 With the doctor Jake Jacob and she ended up it was pretty hardcore rough. I would teach School.

18:09 Pick up our three daughters at Providence Hospital.

18:14 And then drive them home and she'd worked at night shifts. I had two kids and that's how we how we made it.

18:23 She retired as after 10 years as a what the character they call it.

18:37 Lady that encouraged breastfeeding

18:47 Is it is it something related to the rest of how many Millennium that we had women learned that breastfeeding is most important for Provo Friday.

19:07 Bunny house and she's retired from that field.

19:13 Okay getting back to me after I got back from

19:18 Is the Merry-Go-Round kids you ask for it, and you're getting it.

19:33 I have two brothers.

19:36 I deleted it. Grandma side. Oh good grief, Charlie. Anyhow, and

19:44 One of the brothers one of my nephews has a trucking outfit and I went to work as a long-haul trucker.

19:56 Driving from hither and yon and actually doing an awful lot of dirt work and I think probably would be my biggest claim to shame.

20:09 Is that the same theme would be hauling to?

20:16 24000 tons of material how to the rebuilding the north-south runway for Anchorage International Airport

20:28 I know that was a close one one one sour banana have.

20:34 What I was trying to relate to teaching vocational education.

20:42 My whole attitude of us if you teach it you have to know a little bit about it.

20:47 To every year that I was teaching in the high school working in a different.

20:54 Different area of

20:57 Construction I have

21:03 I have

21:06 Work for. As a truck driver

21:09 Isle as a heavy equipment operator

21:13 I pulled wire for electricians. I have dug ditches, which is the lowest of the low as far as construction at is a guy that's out there putting it ties on the ground.

21:33 Preparing the ground for the ties laying rail on top of it. So the trains can have done it. This is in 1964. That was the earthquake. We wrote we helped raise the yards in Portage Portage people realized I did have her probably still does have a large real yard, and we raised it 11 feet in the air. This was after the ground and all disappeared.

22:07 End of

22:11 Of always tried anything that was painted yellow and said caterpillar on it. I loved.

22:20 Anything that move dirt backhoes

22:26 Front end loaders you name it? I've tried it and it it's

22:31 I hope maybe a little bit well-rounded education.

22:37 And it and I tried to give our ladies.

22:44 And I hear that there's nothing wrong.

22:47 If using your noodle, but y'all so we can use your hands to I mean the good lord gave them to us and I figure they better better be put to good use beside eating with.

22:59 And it's it's it's amazing. I would like to go back.

23:07 If it's alright with you.

23:11 In my grandma mother's side of the family were immigrants from Norway my grandfather migrator about to Norway and from Norway into the us but 1875 where he was working on what was known as the Bonanza Farms being run by a Norwegian born.

23:39 U.s. Civil War General was developing his big farms out of Fargo, North Dakota.

23:48 Shortly after he came here. He went back and married my grandmother witch and a mans oenis ton of excitement sit in the boat.

24:01 When was it?

24:03 In the 1880s overtake 1890s and

24:13 Came back and working in the Bonanza farms and then gradually my grandfather.

24:19 End up purchasing hope Farm in to farms and had a small business in a little town called Finley North Dakota, which is a white spot in the middle of Road in North Dakota.

24:34 Like many times of many things

24:37 Things go wrong.

24:40 And you can shake your head and anger at God or whatever you want and

24:49 There they had to borrow money from a bank to buy seed for the farm.

24:56 Two years running they had was known as a Black Rust it was a fungus that killed week before I can terminate and about end of the second year the bank came knocking on the door and said we want our money back and they lost to two Farms.

25:18 It's about that time I grandfather.

25:22 Rasmus poll Engebretson Simonson

25:28 Heard of had a cousin up here this come on to Alaska to the gold rush. So my grandfather made it as far as

25:38 It would be called Cook Inlet Anchorage. No, I take that back ship Creek Anchorage.

25:48 Which is the Anchorage that the steamboats could drop their anchors and people who are from it's coming on at ship Creek Anchorage, Alaska now.

25:59 Don't Deport that's right and my grandfather and the last go to become gold miners and they happen to notice that one morning or a newspaper that put out at the time. This is one along the ship Creek. There's no Anchorage, but just a little.

26:32 Rag called cooking with Pioneer that an amount of Hannah Montana Simonson and seven of their

26:42 8 remaining kids were getting up to fold the next day at Creek Anchorage. That was the last day that my grandfather was a coal miner. He then became a shopkeeper and where he is actually a tin man to knock her and a plumber.

27:01 When Anchorage was was dubbed related up to and if you take a look at Downtown Anchorage it is, you know, it's designed by a government surveyor. Does Oliver Street north south east west they were going to have to head this auction and my grandfather bought

27:30 The hood be the northeast corner of 4th and L.

27:37 The Brady building is today.

27:41 For $285 he bought it and we build a home. Actually. He started collecting lumber for it. They end up having spent two winners intense because there has been a fire somebody was little carols for the bonfire and it burned All the lumber so they spent two.

28:00 Two winners

28:03 As I understand it in 10 canvas tents. She's over with tar paper turn away that quote quote Frost.

28:17 And my mother graduated for 1920 at 17.

28:27 In at Anchorage High School

28:30 She knew what later on went on to.

28:34 Went down to I was at Washington they would put his now Bellingham Washington where it's Western Washington State University where she got her degree teaching degree, which is 1 year degree came back and

28:54 Worked part-time with Rd Clarks, who was who was a teacher here Diner, Naga Island.

29:11 As well as

29:16 Quadzilla and also

29:21 Kennecott

29:23 So and but then she married a minor.

29:31 Fellow by the name of Ingram and he was and they had two sons my two brothers.

29:39 And he was injured in an explosion and he went back to California.

29:45 And in a tantrum tantrum, this is

29:49 At that time they would not hire married School teachers.

29:57 Associate in order to support two kids living with my grandparents

30:03 She had to

30:05 Get a divorce so she could support them.

30:09 We have a letter.

30:15 It was an old.

30:19 Joy, and lollipops and all this good stuff at the time because we have a lighter that I had to have one of my family friends read to me cuz it's in what is known as old norsk. They have new Norwegian and old Norwegian old Norwegian is probably nearest thing to his language is spoken in Iceland.

30:44 Any of the family friend entered read the letter to me cuz it was my grandfather had written back to my mother.

30:52 Thanking your for the $5 gold piece that she said it was part of her salary and it was going to help with the family bills.

31:03 We take a lot for granted and everybody says those were the good old days.

31:09 Partner praise bullshit

31:13 Those were hard days. The good old days are today or we have a lot more going for us. We just don't appreciate what we're getting.

31:25 Anyhow after

31:30 Tried to pay room and board at my grandfather and grandmother's and she tried raise my tube.

31:38 Brothers in

31:41 And probably about three years later. She met my father and

31:49 My grandfather passed away 1931

31:53 And my grandmother in 1937.

31:57 In February and one of my cousin said Wally, that's the only reason you were there here is Grandpa Simonson passed away and your mom needed some comforting Eddie. I'm being realistic. Hey,

32:20 Anyhow, my father was.

32:25 Was 9092 when he passed?

32:33 My mother passed in 1984 and she was probably about 12 or 12 years younger than my father, but you're in Anchorage at one time. We had probably close to.

32:51 Well, if there were seven actually eight of the of the Simonson's here.

32:59 Sum up they all got married one married to

33:05 A pilot for Pan America are actually everybody in PA, but it was pan pan Alaska Airlines, which was part of Pan American Island Airlines and he ordered in on an on an island. Just south of catch Cannon killed in about 1945-46 shortly after World War II another uncle had to

33:35 Two bars here in Anchorage

33:39 At that time

33:42 Everybody looked out for everybody else there weren't the problems we have with there may have been but

33:50 There you had people that were look out after you and you

33:57 There were more like a card place where you find people go in and playing poker or pan pan is a card game with about five decks of card is I don't I don't not understand this game. But anyhow, and let's see that's two of my uncle rash.

34:17 Work for the Alaska railroad. There are three three my three uncles on my uncle.

34:26 Soul was a plumber

34:30 Uncle Brett was a plumber to he inherited the

34:35 The plumbing shop after grandfather passed away

34:40 My aunt's

34:43 We had probably maybe.

34:47 I just close to 40 people in Anchorage has a kid. I can remember finding out what we're having for dinner. Then I'd go visit my aunt Gladys and Uncle something what they're having for dinner and go over to see what

35:04 Angry Bird and Angry Birds having for dinner, but I picked the best one. I swear I eat.

35:12 Who sings this is when I was a little shaver, but it was a small community in.

35:20 I grew up.

35:23 In the area of

35:25 4th and elf on L Street between 4th and 5th Avenue

35:30 And K Street between 4th and 5th Avenue because the entire family at that time it was at that location actually plumbing shop is where the Boney courthouse is today.

35:46 Anyhow, I don't know where I'm going with this week during the Warriors.

35:57 My mother was served on the school board.

36:02 Both my brothers last names are Ingram. They both went to Anchorage High School retired are all Swindell retired from the city of Anchorage where he was just on the old Clinton Highway just be on Muldoon Road. You see great Steve looks like steam going up in the air at that is actually water vapor or they're using water.

36:42 To cool down exhaust system from the electrical plants and it are also using it to raise the water temperature. So water going through the pipes in a nut-free because the water temperature actually good share of anchorage's water comes from eklutna Lake Purdy cool there for a while till the same until I started running this

37:15 The exhaust from the generators through the like a like a radiator on a vehicle that they would raise the temperature of the water up, maybe two or three degrees of be about 34 35 degrees 36 degrees a lot less tempted to freeze.

37:35 My brother Bud anyhow.

37:42 Start out as friendship for the Railroad passenger end up working for a

37:51 Lathrop Lathrop corporation which would be cap Lathrop Austin Annie Lathrop who built the empress theater in the 4th Avenue Theater and Bud start out as a projection has been worked his way through a number of things to be there.

38:12 I guess you classify me engineer on staff actually building building engineer and took care of all the buildings at the Latham Corporation had and it later became the hill corporation. Which included what was now

38:30 City Hall

38:34 Okay.

38:38 This is

38:41 I don't know where I'm going this I'd headscissor branched out and gone a lot farther out than I thought I'd be going as a kid. I can remember delivering both the Anchorage Daily News and Anchorage times both went defunct and then we'll language news is back together at the old Providence Hospital which is built at 9th and L. It came into being in about 1939.

39:15 How big was the hospital during that time? Like how many beds?

39:24 It needed a hospital at the original hospital here in Anchorage that I was born in was called the Alaska railroad husband. It was done on 2nd Avenue between 8th Street and there is that chunk of land went down during earthquake.

39:41 It was disassembled in the in the forties because they

39:49 I think they figured that they could get better care with Providence and Providence was the building was wouldn't wouldn't structure.

39:57 Providence Hospital of the Rich and one at 9th and L was concrete.

40:03 There were a group of sisters Catholic sisters that were doing running some other areas. It was not a first of all during that time Anchorage wasn't that big in 1941? There's probably about three thousand people 330 200 people in Anchorage was it named Anchorage by that time? It was named Anchorage shortly after the somewhat for I guess and actually

40:45 They are actual area that they had.

40:48 People coming on on Shore or fly during Ian that is being.

40:54 Getting off of steam ship to a smaller boat to bring come up to ship Creek that weren't any really quote big dogs, then they started building when they had the first was known as Alaska are the

41:08 Ocean dock

41:11 Which during the Warriors are coming off a lot of use and abuse it and Anchorage grew like Topsy's Garden.

41:24 The area known as Mountain View was guess you'd called the low-rent District.

41:32 During the Warriors there weren't that many places for four people.

41:39 To live because it wasn't really thought out then we had the South addition and all these other additions and ironically

41:50 Out on

41:54 I called turnagain in the sea. There is an area called turning in by the see if they a Housing Development actually 127 of those Acres was was my grandfather's Homestead.

42:09 Chi Homestead and I think 1922-23 and developed a

42:19 Canary out there being from

42:23 Norway they have a close kinship with a c because prior to my grandfather coming to the United States

42:37 He had most of the Kenmore living close to what is now a Bergen, Bergen, which is old Bergen.

42:46 Norway and they were either ships Masters or they were ships Pilots that is they would guide ships into port

42:58 And when they came I don't quite understand what my grandpa's.

43:05 Rasmus decided to

43:09 Go to North Dakota because it's Rolling Hills. And there's nothing there. There's no mountains. There's no C, but that's where he lived and probably coming up here, but there are the sea was kind of rough on.

43:28 The Norwegian side of the family and that one of my grandmother's sister's watched her husband and two other Sons drowned 200 yards off of the island that the living call stohlman.

43:47 I didn't want grandmother phone that out. Also my grandfather.

43:52 Fish nets Nets

43:56 And fished at he broached boat between Fire Island and Campbell point and warms up Point roast boat means he tipped to one over in a bore tide.

44:09 Made it.

44:11 To land

44:13 And came ashore in as long as underwear and t-shirt lost his pants and his boots plus boat and happen to come across an old Bootlegger. That was at a place out there by the name of Bob Maxey.

44:29 And Bob let him a pair of boots and a pair of trousers so you can come back home there eat around like it's summer, but it'd be probably in the

44:47 Early spring her no summer early summer when those fish were running needless to say I keep

44:58 He was told.

45:00 But to Grandma Simonson who I've never met but it was rather diminick diminutive short on stature long on Eagles. I guess she informed her husband that there are no more fisherman and his family and that's when he really had a knuckle down and become a plumber in a tin knocker, but

45:26 That's that's so viciously Simonson subdivision came part of a lot of people's lives when 1948 the the guys all ended up my uncle's end up with pieces of property.

45:47 My aunt's

45:49 Except for my oldest and she and her daughter ended up with a house property the others Vyvanse and up a piece of property with his my mom and helped subdivide get somebody Engineers to subdivide. It turned it into Simonson subdivision. And ironically after the Warriors. There's a young fellow came to Alaska and build a number of houses just to get his foot in the door and his name was Wally hickel.

46:22 Walter J. Heckel who later developed built all of the Captain Cook hotels

46:29 There is a you can't go very far.

46:33 An angry chip a lot of people thinks it's a big city. I think it's a big Village big Village Primary School down the street. You kick over Stone you make kickovers donuts may have somebody's name on it. He can't bad-mouth that that's don't even if it hurt your foot got to say good things about it because whoever's listings me say, oh, I know that individual and it is quite small and I really enjoy seeing people that I went to high school with that are still around.

47:10 Or see the names of their kids.

47:14 And that that's why I really get a chuckle out of your dad who is my position actually grew up in Palmer Palmer, AK, Alaska, which

47:31 Which is neat I can remember as a kid going to Palmer where we go up for the colony days.

47:40 Which was during the Spring and on the train and he's a locomotive engineer ride ride in the cab of the locomotive with him and you'd see an awful lot of folks that were actually folks. It came up in the 30s to be part of the Matanuska settlement where they were actually trying to get Farming going up and Palmer in the Matanuska Valley.

48:13 And it's got rich rich rich feels I really

48:20 Tribes and Dagger through my heart want to see where all these gravel pits are because they're mining all the gravel and taking all the topsoil often.

48:30 But hey, Alaska's being billed and I have to have something.

48:36 But

48:39 It's I've got some strong feelings and

48:50 Well you asked for it. You got it.

48:53 I have

48:56 Alaska should have

49:00 The best public health system going

49:03 But you have the best education system going and had should have a good or the best transportation system beard rail or on roads or on fairies. The Marine Highway is called a Marine Highway because it's used as a Marine Highway.

49:27 Hey, I don't I don't think I was raised with a silver spoon in my mouth.

49:38 I think I remember my first my dad's first monthly paycheck after retiring from the last Craig was for $250 and 1951 at what the whole lot.

49:52 But I don't I don't remember ever being going hungry. I may have gone to school with patch clothes, but they were clean.

50:03 I was encouraged to go to school whether I like it or not or become educated home with a belt or something similar to it.

50:14 Although I can't really say.

50:18 That wherever you that was used on me very often. It was just the threat and I think

50:27 Like many things I hated to see disappointment in me and neither of my parents eyes.

50:37 I have never felt smaller than about a quarter inch high when I made some disappointing.

50:47 Mistakes and it really my dad didn't say anything, but he didn't have to

50:55 I felt crushed and it did until the day my dad passed he wanted to hit.

51:04 All I Do Is Win cover my face and let him head

51:08 It was not a brutal man, but he was a just man.

51:13 I love him very dearly.

51:16 Could be safe for my mom.

51:22 Better education already Clark said she she should go back and get another your schooling. So she went down and she went to school in Oakland with all the hippies, California Southern California. Anyhow, USC any of it was

51:54 Tribit, I used to tease her about that. She didn't like that very much, but

52:06 People today seem to think that okay. This is my state.

52:13 I want my money.

52:17 First of all there just dwelling and living in a state that chooses to give the money.

52:25 I am do not think that the PFD is important but important part.

52:32 I prefer would prefer it to be much smaller going to things that everybody needs.

52:40 I see myself families in Bethel and I work in Nyack that in the winter they had to use.

52:53 Buckets to hold or sewage people shouldn't have to live with that. They should have good Public Health some things.

53:04 And I'm lucky to live be living in an area that has offered me a whole lot of opportunities.

53:16 Again, Dad used to tell me, you know kid the one thing.

53:24 But nobody can ever take away from you is your education.

53:29 And it is that's true education is very important day a person stops learning he should die cuz he's you learn something new everyday and it's important part of being a human and you got to realize that other people live on this little Blue Marble that we exist on and we're going to have to learn to get along together.

53:59 I think if you do something wrong, you should pay for it.

54:05 He do something right you should get accolades for not necessarily big bucks.

54:12 But I had somebody here. I've done the things that I feel like nobody even know that I did it's the right thing to do and somebody finds out about his Wally did a good job that makes me feel 15 feet tall not because

54:32 Somebody noticed it and it was the right thing to do to type.

54:41 Coral oclock, it's 15 minutes before I think I probably talked enough whenever I think this is a good stopping point. Now we are just stories are amazing for as my medical condition. I have broken more bone. I have a

55:08 Had more surgeries. I've been a downhill skier on the ski patrol down the alyeska and Arctic Valley.

55:17 I have a

55:20 Actually, I walk with the King today because

55:28 I walk a little funny otherwise, but I think I can't complain about it. I have to look at it. Today is a good day. I got up.

55:41 I got to have coffee with my friends. Every Wednesday or part of a group. They're probably about 25 of his 26 of us men and women wives and husbands.

55:54 Meet every Wednesday at 9 out at Old Seward and 101 coffee shop kaladi brothers and have coffee and we solve all of the problems the world forget that talk about things that bother us and it's it's a place where you're touching base.

56:23 I think it's most important that I get out and talk to people.

56:30 I am at the present Governor has got me thinking about he's more interesting and putting me on on on ice floe and kicking me off and seeing me disappearing like the they said they were supposed to do thousands years ago to people that they thought were too old.

56:55 It's really really hard when I things that I really believe in and people are saying that cost too much if people think education's to expense. They sure as hell don't know what the cost of ignorance is ignorance.

57:14 There's so much of it in the world. It doesn't have to be there.

57:24 And I'll keep kicking the can down the road.

57:29 Like I said, you guys opened Pandora's Box and I'll sit here PS4 hours.

57:41 Thank you. I think there are many opportunities to invite you back whenever you're like, I'm ready to GHIN another story with that shit your time. Just coming here today. I wished I'd been smart enough.

57:59 To tape record my dad's stories.

58:04 He never really talked much about England.

58:08 In 1987

58:13 My my cousin Patsy

58:17 Add was dying of cancer and she and her daughter-in-law was going to go we're going to go over to get to Norway.

58:24 So at the present that that time I was president of the sons of Norway here in Anchorage.

58:30 And she marches in and we are having Mother's Day brunch and Beverly announce to one and all that. Wally is going to go to Norway with Patsy and Linda.

58:42 And we got over there and I found out that there was a

58:49 Some of our cousins on this little Island

58:54 Did you start writing family history back from about 1550 before that date black play in after that. You were any how I feel like while I'm coming back. This is 1987. I will.

59:11 Write the Norwegian are they Norwegian American history from 1987 and I'll get it up in a matter of flash-bang time timing. However,

59:26 Like some of my cousins were rather cryptic of I'd ask for their would you mind giving me the dates of your kids?

59:36 Birthdays at when when they're born. When were they married and one of them brought back? Well Wally some were some warrant.

59:47 Wesley left it at that and I want to reach through the I could have grabbed him by the throat. I would have strangled him. I'm still working on this family tree.

59:57 Norwegian side and my father didn't had really good never talked much about thankfully side.

00:06 In 1958. There was a world fair in Brussels my mother and number.

00:15 Ladies went on a trip around the world sponsored by our by Northwest Airlines and that there were any of she stopped in England and met my grandfather and I was just prior to his dying. But anyhow,

00:33 Gets back and I start trying to dredge Solace information out of it. He had gone back since there was a hard feelings between my grandfather and Mike and he went back after World War. I think of 1923 with $5,000 cash in his pocket.

00:53 That was used just to sit there and flashing in my grandfather's nose.

01:01 A little bit of vindictiveness there. He did. Keep in contact with my grandmother and but she died 1929.

01:14 So I'm trying to work on that that and I would like to get our grandkids.

01:22 We have C.

01:25 6 grandkids

01:28 Or young ladies to guys

01:31 Impalas at least an idea of where we were there from and what part of the Melting Pot is and weather.

01:42 I chuckle when I listen to some of these people potify and say yes, I'm a true Alaskan. I feel like bulshit. You got up here on the boat or an airplane. You are amazing to walked in his country, but you're not.

01:55 You're here. You're an immigrant just like the rest of us be proud of it.

02:00 And actually that's one of our present presidents one said ask not what they can do for you. What what can you do for it and actually be a contributing factor?

02:20 I hate all my teaching and I was really really proud cuz I never know what

02:29 Some of these kids were going to do and I can remember wanting she's a mechanical engineer from for what for the oil companies up here. Anyhow kikkan Randall Zandt.

02:53 What did Greek ever class full of these then it dawned on me Wally. If you had a class like that, you would be dead the first year because you'd be having to work yourself to death to keep up with them. But it's still that that the number of of things in the

03:14 My some of my former students will say mr. Smith. Hurry, and I feel well. Hey, wait a sec the day. You got the diploma. He got you. You should starve called me Wally.

03:32 Sometimes mr. Puts a little too much emphasis on

03:40 Like royalty

03:42 I'm as common as at Spud. I mean an old potato. It's

03:49 I'd rather be affected like that.

03:53 Wally one last question before we end our conversation you as an educator what high school did you teach here in town, or was it 8 years to East Anchorage High School?

04:07 You have my deepest sympathy.

04:09 So I actually part of the group that I have coffee with there's four or five of us that were all remnants from East High School.

04:21 Then it's it's a small world at one time. Ironically it worth hiring any graduates from Ankeny to Anchorage High School's Anchorage High School teach.

04:37 In 1950 and 1961. I'd written after graduating from Washington State actually was there.

04:49 4 1/2 here is not a statement from other half here took some graduate courses, but

04:54 61 got up here and Joe Montgomery who was superintendent schools at one time also.

05:06 Yeah, my mother had hired him in 1941 prior to World War II.

05:16 He was drafted in the end up being a bomber pilot. He came back the principles and end up being superintendent of schools and he hires me. That was ironic.

05:31 And the schools

05:35 The schools here are just as good as any place else.

05:40 It's it's

05:44 And no.

05:47 Like we used to say West is best for Easter so least or something like this. What a crock. I mean if you get in the right area you're as good as you want to be.

06:02 And you want to participate as many things as you can.

06:07 Enough said I better go.

06:10 Well, thank you so much for the time. I appreciate.