April 2015





OUR CLASSMATE BARBARA SMITH PATTERSON recently passed away. She went to school with many of us all the way from grade school through high school. After she graduated with us at WHS, she married Mike Patterson (WHS Class of 1963), a brother of our classmate Gerry Patterson. Barbara and Mike had two children before divorcing a few years later. In her 2006 note to state she would be unable to attend our 40-year reunion due to living in rural Utah, Barbara noted that both of her sons were “nearing 40” that year (2006) and both sons “decided to wait to settle down and get married later in life rather than early on like most people.” Barbara and I visited for quite a while at a party held at Gillie’s home in November 2008, at which time Barbara told me that her family moved to Security in 1955 and she went to grade school in a house before the grade school was built.

 Many thanks to our classmate Marcia Hagans Allin for pointing out the 3/25/15 Gazette newspaper that had the obituary listed below.


Barbara Lucille Patterson, 66, passed away on Tuesday, February 24, 2015 of natural causes. She was born in Colorado Springs on July 3, 1948 to Ira and Beatrice Smith. She attended Widefield High School and took college courses at Pikes Peak Community College. She married Mike Patterson in 1966 and had two sons, Chuck and Rob Patterson. She and Mike Patterson divorced in 1971. Barbara worked for Hewlett Packard and Current Checks. She was a member of Ladies Auxiliary, Eagle's Club and a longtime member of Security Christian Church. Barbara loved to draw pictures, read, and play card games. She enjoyed going out to dinner with family. She is survived by her brother Ken Smith of Colorado Springs and her sons, Chuck Patterson of Pocatello, Idaho and Rob Patterson of Colorado Springs. She is also survived by her two grandsons, Conner and Garrett Patterson. She is preceded in death by her father, Ira Smith, mother, Bea Smith, and brother, Harold Smith. Funeral service is on Saturday, March 28, 11:00 a.m., Academy Christian Church located at 1635 Old Ranch Road in Colorado Springs.


 OUR CLASSMATE BARBARA BILLINGSLEY MASSARANO will be in Colorado Springs on a brief visit this month, and she would like to visit with classmates on Thursday, April 9. To learn the time and location, send an email to our classmate Bruce McAlexander at



 MORE MEMORIES of our classmate BRAD DOUGLAS are listed below in entries by people who learned of Brad’s death in the mid-March 2015 announcement emailed to everyone on our contact list.

 Don, thank you for the news of Brad’s passing. I remember, at our tenth reunion, when we had the opportunity to show off our first-born son who was just about 3 months old. Brad made a point of coming over to visit with us to tell us that he thought our son had a great name. Our first-born child is named Bradley Douglas Allen. I remember telling my wife, when we had made the final decision on his name, “I have a classmate named Bradley Douglas; I hope our Brad is as talented as my classmate.” As it turned out, he is. In different ways, but yes, he is as talented. Thanks, Don, I so do appreciate your hard work keeping our classmates so tied together. Your hard work keeps us on the same path more than we think.

-- Doug Allen, Class of 1966

 [RE Bruce McAlexander’s piece about Brad in the March 2015 announcement.]

Bruce: I too was a scared kid in my teens when I transferred to Security from Billings, Montana. My recall is that Brad is one of the first classmates I met in Security. Brad was the friend who accepted me in, no questions asked, and that is how I shall always remember him. He accepted, did not judge, just accepted. I received the word of Brad’s passing from Larry Lysell. He agreed that Brad was indeed one of those people that you could embrace from day one. He will be truly missed by his family and indeed by the entire class of 1966. Rest in Peace

-- Dave Theiss, Class of 1966

 Brad was a good friend from grade school, all the way through high school. I always wondered what happened to him and why he never came to a reunion. Would ask Larry Lysell about him, as they were good friends and lived near each other. Brad and his Mom belonged to my church. I remember he was always friendly, funny and smart. I don't think I would have passed history class without him. Just a nice guy.

-- Rhonda Richards Shamburger, Class of 1966

 I'm sorry to hear of Brad's passing. Yes, he was a good guy.

-- Carla Aber Baker, Class of 1966

 Brad was one of the nicest, sweetest young men that I had the pleasure of meeting and being friends with at WHS. I am so sorry for his family's loss, for truly it is a great loss also for his WHS family. My thoughts and prayers are with his family. Peace be with them.

-- Shirley (Guinta) Tafoya, Class of 1966

 Please accept my sincere sympathies.

-- Pete Spiers, Class of 1966

 Thanks for letting us know about Brad. We lose contact through the years and it is hard to keep up.

-- Sheryl Salmon Pyle, Class of 1965

 I was in the class of 1967 and Brad Douglas was a very special friend. I have often wondered what happened to him and have thought about him often over all of these years. I would like to share a story I will never forget about Brad. One summer day my brother Jon Dawson (Class of 1965) took our dad’s car out to the Drag Races and I jumped in and went along. Well, Jon decided to enter dad's car in the race and he refused to take me home. So along came Dave Theiss and I asked if he would take me home. Dave Theiss, Brad Douglas and I believe Craig Snow were in the car and they said sure get in. Dave decided to take us all up to the lot in Widefield where they were building their new house. We got bogged down in the sand and were totally stuck. The three guys digging and trying to get us out for about 2 hours, I was going to be late getting home and probably in trouble. So Brad was the only one who offered to walk me up to the door and explain to my parents why I was late!!! I was so thrilled because my mom really liked Brad!! They didn't buy the story but after I told them Jon was drag racing dad's car, he was in much more trouble than I was! That was Brad, always doing the right thing and always doing the kind thing. Tom and I send our thoughts and prayers to all of Brad's family. A loss for this earth, but a gain for the Kingdom!

-- Drinda Dawson Nigbur, Class of 1967 (wife of Tom Nigbur, Class of 1966)



 REUNIONS in 2015 and 2016 were the topic of a mid-March 2015 note from our classmate Gillie Walker to about 15 classmates who have been involved with organizing past reunions. Although she initially was in favor of combining our 50-year reunion with the Class of 1965 event to be held in June 2015, her March 2015 note indicated a change in her views. She wrote:

“Hi friends! It occurs to me that if even one of our class feels so strongly about having a 50th reunion on the exact anniversary of our graduation, that's what we should do. There's been a fair amount of discussion and we probably have seen a ratio of people who feel strongly to those who don't care so much (for whatever reason) that would probably hold true for the rest of the class who haven't responded. I suggest we let the idea go. Those who want to come this year will come and those who want to have festivities next year will make that happen. What do you say?”

 Of about 15 classmates to whom Gillie directed her note, Mike Adragna and I were the only ones who replied. Despite Mike’s view that was reported in the November 2014 update wherein Mike stated “I say the sooner the better” in support of a June 2015 reunion, Mike recently expressed a different view by stating “I can’t make it this year but would like to help on next year’s reunion.” In reply to Mike’s note, Gillie wrote, “Everyone will miss you in June but I’m sure your help next year will be appreciated.”

 I commended Gillie in my reply, to wit:

“I agree with her. Regardless of what any of us say, this year’s June event will occur and it remains to be seen whether or not there will be an event next year. Give ourselves a breather and just take both years one step at a time and see what transpires. I look forward to reading what the rest of you think about Gillie's note, which I found was very insightful and conciliatory.”

 When Gillie and I did not hear any further input from the 15 classmates to whom she directed her original note, she wrote:

“Donnie, thank you for your reply. I haven't heard from anyone else.  Perhaps the question has faded away of its own accord...2016 being too far away to make any definitive decision. That works for me. It's probably time to include this in your next update. I appreciate you doing that for all of us.”


 THE 50-YEAR ANNIVERSARY of the CLASS of 1965 will be held on Friday and Saturday, June 19-20, with a dinner/dance on Friday night at the event center near Widefield and a picnic on Saturday in the park in Fountain. The event is open to ALL classes of the 1960s. Soft drinks will be provided on both days with a cash bar being available at the event center. Only cans of 3.2 beer will be allowed at the picnic. While there will be tables at the picnic, local people are urged to bring lawn chairs and blankets for attendees coming from out of town.

 The registration fee is $50 per person for the two-day event. Online payments can be made on the Paypal website, at which the “Send” option should be clicked on the home page and then typewidefield65reunion@yahoo.com in the box titled “their email.” Be sure to click the “Friends or Family” tab so there will be no charges to reunion organizers. In the note section, leave your name and contact information. Payments via postal mail can be sent to:

Lyle Wikner

2223 Clarkson Dr.

Colorado Springs, CO 80909


Inquiries about the June 2015 two-day event can be sent via email to widefield65reunion@yahoo.com


Updated information also can be found on Facebook by searching:  

“Widefield High School Class of 1965 Reunion”




TO VISIT OUR CLASS WEBSITE that was assembled and is maintained by our Class Committee member and Webmaster, Paul Snell, please go to: www.1966whs.com


The software that Paul used to build the website allows people to access the website through a regular computer as well as a smartphone or digital tablet. At the bottom of each page of the website is a link to a Facebook page that can be used by classmates who have Facebook and want to communicate and receive information through Facebook. Please be sure to bookmark the website address on your computer so that you will have it handy whenever you want to visit the website.




WE ARE VOLUNTEERS. Please do not ever take it personally if you do not hear right away from Paul Snell, Gillie Walker, Bruce McAexander and other classmates. As volunteers, we have only so much time within which to do our volunteer work as well as tend to other aspects of our personal lives.


Delays in my replies, in particular, are due to me not being awake very much anymore as sleeping long hours is the only time period during which there is total relief from my neurological illness for which there is no cure. It is now ten (10) years that I have had massive nerve damage. With this neurological illness continuing to take center stage in my life each day, there cannot be very much so-called normal or routine activities on my part as long as a state of normalcy has not been returned to my life. As noted in my update in July 2013, another reason for delays in my replies is that I have been “slowing down” more and more since late 2012 – it takes me forever to get something done. My doctors attribute the slowness to me getting older, not the neurological illness.




This update was prepared by me.


Respectfully submitted,


Donnie Martinez

Known at WHS by stepfather’s surname Collier

Martinez is my birth certificate and legal surname

a/k/a Butch, family nickname since childhood

a/k/a Don, presumably the adult version of Donnie

a/k/a Primo (Cousin) to dozens of my Martinez cousins

a/k/a El Aguila (The Eagle), a version of Gillie’s name for me

a/k/a Nitpicker Supreme, a title lovingly given to me by Gillie

a/k/a Frank to older women saying I look like their idol Frank Sinatra

a/k/a Dee Dee, a fun name used by people to mean Dear Donnie


I don’t care what people call me, just call me.