The Lakewood Story: History, Traditions, Values was begun in 2003 as part of the celebration of Lakewood’s fiftieth anniversary of incorporation in 2004. Grateful acknowledgment is made to the members of the Lakewood City Council for their support of this project and the many other events of Lakewood’s 50th anniversary year.
The Lakewood Story was revised specifically for web publication in 2013-2014 as part of the city’s 60th anniversary of incorporation in mid-2014. This new, enlarged edition was made possible with further support of the Lakewood City Council and members of the Lakewood city staff.
The print publication of The Lakewood Story was originally made possible in 2003 by a grant from the Weingart Foundation, whose mission focuses on the health, knowledge, skill, confidence, and self-esteem of children and youth. The foundation's generosity in this and other contributions to Lakewood is warmly appreciated.
Allison Baker, PhD undertook much of the original research in 2003 with a special emphasis on the social history of Lakewood's first residents. Her 1999 dissertation, The Lakewood Story: Defending The Recreational Good Life In Postwar Southern California Suburbia, 1950-1999, provided interpretations, stories, and factual details far too numerous to list here.
Many informants provided their interpretations of Lakewood’s story for these pages. It is appropriate, however, to acknowledge the enormous contribution made to this publication by City Attorney Emeritus John Todd, former Mayor Jacqueline Rynerson, and past and present members of the Lakewood City Council.
Among those who provided both resources and encouragement for this project in 2003 were City Manager Howard L. Chambers, Assistant City Manager Michael W. Stover, Deputy City Manager Sandi Ruyle, and Assistant to the City Manager Lisa Novotny.
The authors also wish to thank Recreation and Community Services Department Director Joan Biegel, Community Development Director Charles K. Ebner, Water Resources Director James Glancy, Public Works Director Lisa M. Rapp, Finance Director Larry Schroeder, and Senior Producer of CityTV Linda Price for their help.
Equally valuable was the research assistance of City Clerk Denise R. Hayward and Deputy City Clerk M. J. Semense-Mayberry who provided access to records archived by Lakewood city clerks since 1954. Angelo Iacoboni Library Manager Donna Walters also provided research assistance. Public Information Officer Donald J. Waldie provided overall editorial support.
Among those who provided editorial assistance in the preparation of these pages in 2003 were Executive Secretary Alma Varela, Administrative Secretary Florence Chernushin, and Clerk Typist Carolyn Edwards. Photographic resources were managed by Media Technician David Lester and City Photographer Earle Church. Community Relations Manager Sheryl Musicant Stewart and Administrative Clerk Elizabeth Ruiz, Legislative Technician Peggy Beam, Electronic Media Producer Robert Brammer, and Video Operations Assistant Eileen McIlrath provided additional support.
Contributors to this publication also included Jennifer Jeter of the Angelo Iacoboni Library and Richard Howland, formerly of the Long Beach Press-Telegram.
The authors also wish to thank Teena Apeles, who read and corrected the manuscript and proof pages as the print publication went to press in 2004.
Oral histories collected in 1978 and in 1999-2003 formed a large part of the authors' research into Lakewood’s past. The authors would like to thank those who contributed their memories. They included Margie Lehner Armstrong, Susie Atwood, Robert and Phyllis Baker, Dorothy Barbelle, Edward (Bud) McCain, Jr. and Claudette McCain, Gertrude Barbelle, Evelyn Shubin, John C. Bonner, John Buck, Loretta Gustafson Byrne, Robin Tweedy Nordee, June Tweedy, Marvin Cavanaugh, Diane DuBois, Anne Pechin Emigh, John T. Ford, Evelyn Waneta Foth, Linda Kay Gahan, L. B. Harbour, Jr., Charles Haynes, Nancy Hicks, Herb and Ruth Houston, Jack Huntsinger, Sandra Jenkins Janich, Harold Judson, Marshall Julian, Dennis Lander, Tom Lederer, Birdie and Meyer Levy, Thomas and Janet MacHale , Beverlee Nye Perez , Ron Piazza, John J. Rae, Mike Rae, Kirk J. Real, Donald H. Rochlen, Dave Rodda, Don Rose, Dewain (Bud) Rynerson and Jacqueline Rynerson, Keith Sharon, Suzanne Henderson Shipp, Ruth Smith, Woodrow W. Smith, Steven L. Soboroff, John Todd, Mary Jo Wagner, Roger and Shirley Williams, Paul and Lillian Worthington, and Barry Wulwick.
The authors of The Lakewood Story in 2003 were Allison Baker, Michael W. Stover, and Donald J. Waldie.
The revision of The Lakewood Story in 2013-2014 was aided by many of those who contributed to the original publication. In addition to them, grateful acknowledgment is made to City Manager Howard Chambers, Assistant City Manager Lisa Novotny, and Public Information Officer Bill Grady.
Donald J. Waldie, Lakewood Historian Emeritus