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ARLENE JOHNSON Hillman

Profile Updated: August 23, 2019
Spouse/Partner
Doug Hillman
Children
Just dogs! Abby and Darcy
Class Year
1979
Bio

I graduated from Cal State Fullerton with a History degree in 1983. I started work at Disneyland in 1979 where I met my husband Doug. Although I started at the Park, I soon transferred to Walt Disney Travel where I still work today. Being in the travel industry has given us lots of opportunities to indulge in our love of travel. Especially to the U.K. and any place there are lots of trees! I also became an antiques dealer for 7 years at a shop in Old Town Orange which was a great experience. We live in a 1914 bungalow which we have spent the last 20 years restoring. It has a third of an acre of gardens which we love to spend time in. Gardening is a passion of ours and our old home is blessed with 7 mature avocado trees planted over 70 years ago. We are very popular come Harvest time with friends and family!

Which was your favorite Teacher(s) or class?

Mr Long was my favorite teacher. He fostered my life long love of history and archaeology. In my Senior year, I went on the Canyon/Villa Park joint European trip which Mr. Long and Mr. Driver chaperoned. 21 days...it opened my eyes to the wonders of travel. Coach Bowden was cool...and talked to our current events class like we were adults. I loved Choir director Mr McMillan and Mr Sayward for Spanish...even if he did teach us Spanish with a British accent!

What are your most vivid, favorite memories from High School?

I was blessed with a close group of friends. We weren’t the popular kids, but we had such fun together! The “Group” was me, Kathy Menke, Elaine Houck, Cathy Stoddard, Cheryl Masters, Frank Amato, Kerry Rodman, John Franklin and Bill Holley. Even today, most of us still try to get together as often as our busy schedules allow. But then...most of us at Canyon had grown up together from childhood. Going through elementary and junior high school together, it felt like we all were a community with a common history. I remember loving spirit week, pep rallies, going to football and basketball games. “We are the Champions” and stomping on the gym bleachers when we won CIF. The key Club car rallies were absolutely fabulous! Toga day. Learning to drive in the “Simulators.” Lunchtimes spent in Mr. Long’s classroom. Cruising Tustin Avenue and skating at Holiday Skate rink and down at Balboa. Hearing our music takes me back to these great memories. Journey, Styxx, John Denver, Barry Manilow, Donna Summer, Lionel Ritchie, Eagles, The Doobie Brothers, Foreigner, Toto, Fleetwood Mac and Chicago. We were so blessed to have grown up in such a special school at such a special time.

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