James Laird - "Some Summer Activities at Lark Ellen Home for Boys" - Page 1

As I sit here writing this on Jan. 21, in the year 2000 a lot of time has passed or as they say a lot of water has passed under the bridge. But it is still surprising to me that I remember so much that happened back then. The big event during the summer most of the years we were living at the Lark Ellen Home for Boys was our two weeks spent up in the San Bernardino Mts. We older boys would pack enough clothes to last a couple of weeks along with our toothbrush and a couple of army blankets and climb into the back of our old Chevy stake bed truck. The truck was usually driven by Bud Cassidy the super's son and away we would go.

It was a long hot ride from west Los Angeles next to Santa Monica to Camp Seely which is located back into the mountains behind Crestline. The slug up the steep grade after you left the San Bernardino area always seemed twice as long as the rest of the trip. The song "99 bottles of beer" was sung many times in the later part of the trip. The last time we went the old truck boiled over and had other problems so that is probably why it was the last trip. The last few miles from Crestline to Camp Seely were the best with the cool air and tall trees all around you.

Camp Seely was pretty neat for us boys. We slept out on steel cots set up under the stars in a small level spot covered in pine needles between the pine trees just up above the camp proper. The sky full of millions of bright stars to wonder about as you fell asleep after a busy day. There was a large meeting hall, cafeteria, store, cabins and a swimming pool.