Friday, August 14, 2009

Okinawa Memories Part VI

The Little Girl In The Second Row
Wearing The Jumper and Blouse
Elizabeth Vargas
An ABC News Journalist
She currently does 20/20 news magazine for ABC News. Starting in March of 2006 Elizabeth anchored the ABC Evening News with Bob Woodruff. When Bob Woodruff was injured in Iraq she continued the broadcast by herself until she took a leave of absence for having her second child. Elizabeth's father was stationed on Okinawa and later in Germany where I ran into Elizabeth again at the officers' club in Frankfurt. She was then in sixth grade and had grown very tall. That was the spring of 1974. In 1980 Elizabeth graduated from Heidelberg High School in Heidelberg, Germany. You can learn more about Elizabeth Vargas by clicking here:
This is a pic of my first grade girls for Japanese Girl's Day. I think Elizabeth Vargas is the little girl in the second row on the far right. She has a short pixie haircut.
Final comment: I had completely forgotten about her until the night in 200? I was watching Elizabeth host the 20/20 show on the book, The Da Vinci Code. All thru this 20/20 show I kept being drawn to Elizabeth's eyes. Finally I said to Jack who was also watching the show that I had the weirdest feeling that I had seen those eyes in real life but I couldn't figure out how I would have ever met Elizabeth Vargas. So I went to bed.
When I awoke the next day I suddenly remembered that I had had a cute little petite girl with dark hair in my first grade class my first year on Okinawa. It was like my unconscious brain had solved the problem while I was asleep. So I ran to get this class photo. Well, they look alike in the face? Could it be? So then I ran to my computer and did a bio search for Elizabeth and learned that she had graduated from Heidelberg American High School the spring of 1980. Well, that's it. I did remember those eyes. Strange huh?


Anne said...

Hello..someone just sent me the link to your blog...what fun to read. I am Elizabeth's mother and what memories this brought fun to see; yes, that is her at far end of 2d row from top...not totally sure about the Japanese day photo but maybe...a lot of water under the bridge since then...her two boys are now 6 and nearly 3 and motherhood her first priority...thank you for remembering...I will forward this to her...Anne Vargas

Jack and Joann said...

Oh, dear, you are correct. That's not Elizabeth. These are the cute little girls from my first grade class my second year on Okinawa. I goofed!

Cathy said...

I just stumbled onto your blog, I attended Sukiran Elementary from 1965-1969 (first thru fourth grade).

I am now 51 years old and wish I still had my kimonos. I held onto a toy that represented the character from the story: Little One Inch (a gift that I chose a day or two before we left the Island), but recently have not been able to find him.

I have been trying to put together some of my Okinawa memories to pass down to my kids and grand kids. Your pictures have filled in some of the gaps for me. Thank you so much.

I remembered the Pricipal, but not her name. She was tall with red hair--I think. So when I saw her picture, it was just astounding!

The picture of the school is fantastic! My fourth grade class was in the quanset hut style building that I can see in the corner of the picture!

I can't remember any of my teachers names except Mrs. Williams that I had for first grade. I remembered the culture class teachers--loved it.

Anyway, thank you so much. I love the pictures.

JanKnitz said...

I was there the same time--on the island from 1965 to 1970, at Sukiran elementary for 3rd through 5th grade. My 4th grade teacher was Suzanne Jones and I think my 5th grade teacher was Mrs. Jacobsen, but I had Mrs. Thompson for math and she was incredible.

Mrs. Muhring (not sure of the spelling) was the principal. My dad was the president of the PTA and I used to get called to her office all the time to carry messages between Mrs. Muhring and my father--the other kids always thought I was in trouble! My dad worked in the headquarters building right behind the school.

Many fond memories of glee club Christmas shows and Okinawa culture days in the multi-purpose room, lunch in the cafeteria (well, maybe not so fond!), and the big playground.

After school we'd get in trouble for walking to the driving range next door and buying candy in the little store. I lived in Kishaba, next to a huge playground that was the mecca for all the kids around.

I still have my kimono that I wore to school on Girls Day and other celebrations.

Anybody remember Felix bubble gum???

JanKnitz said...

The principal's name was Mrs. Muhring (not sure of the spelling). I was on the island from 1965 - 1970--1st through 5th grade, and I spent 3rd through 5th at Sukiran Elementary. I had a great 4th grade teacher, Suzanne Jones and our classroom was in that little out building with the rounded corrugated roof--like a Quonset Hut.

In 5th grade my teacher was Mrs. Jacobsen and Mrs. Thompson taught math--she was awesome!

I have many fond memories at the school. I was in the glee club and I remember putting on shows for holidays and culture days--doing an Okinawa style dance with silk parasols. I remember the glee club singing carols at a big tree lighting ceremony at Kue Hospital.

I still have my Girl's day kimono.

Those class photos were taken by Blackie the Photographer, and I remember he also played Santa at that little "department store" near Awase golf course with a full-face mask on that was very scary!

Thanks for the trip back to my childhood! said...

My sister and I went to Sukiran Elementary from 1966-1969. I have some pictures. The link is below

Michael Trahan