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Hollywood High School in Hollywood, California

But do they have any famous graduates?

Out & About

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

When Jim and I were in Los Angeles this past May 11 for National Train Day, we took Los Angeles Metro Rail from the historic Union Station to Hollywood. We exited at the Hollywood/Vine Station and walked along Hollywood Boulevard to the Hollywood/Highland Station, a tiresome many blocks.

Lassie's star on the Hollywood Walk of FameDuring our walk, we discovered stars (the Hollywood Walk of Fame), the historic Pantages Theatre and TCL Chinese Theatre (formerly Grauman’s Chinese Theatre and Mann’s Chinese Theatre), and much more. When we were finished, we tried to find the Hollywood/Highland Station rather than walking back along the extremely crowded Hollywood Boulevard to the Hollywood/Vine station.

It took us a little while to find the Hollywood/Highland Station. We had kept going around it because there was a huge crowd in front of it. Since it’s a subway station, the crowds massed around the entrance to the underground caused us to miss it when we kept going around the crowds.

We got lost several times, but getting lost is not always bad. In this case, we discovered the historic Hollywood High School. It’s not accessible because, well, it’s a high school, so it has a very high fence around it keeping people like me out. The only picture I could get was of an exterior wall of the auditorium which had been painted with a huge mural. This was on the left side:

Hollywood High School in Hollywood, California

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

On the right side of the wall was information about the mural:

Hollywood High School in Hollywood, California

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Do you recognize the two people in my photograph? Jim and I think the woman is Judy Garland of “Wizard of Oz” fame. We don’t know who the guy is.

There are probably children of rich and famous movie and television stars who still go to Hollywood High School, again explain the high fence. That got me to thinking just who the famous Hollywood High School graduates are. Here’s a partial list:

  • Carole Lombard, Class of 1923 – Hollywood’s highest-paid actress in the late 1930s and wife of Clark Gable.
  • John Huston, Class of 1923 – Best known (to me) as the director of such classic movies as  The Maltese Falcon, The Treasure of the Sierra Madre, Key Largo, The African Queen, Moulin Rouge, The Misfits, and The Man Who Would Be King. Great movies all!
  • Lon Chaney, Jr., Class of 1924 – Actor with a long résumé of movies from 1922 to 1971. He played The Wolf Man, The Mummy, Frankenstein’s monster, and, of course, Count Alucard. If you’re not familiar with Count Alucard, just reverse the letters of “alucard.”
  • Alan Ladd, Class of 1931 – Actor who starred in Shane, one of the greatest westerns of all time.
  • Alan Hale, Jr., Class of 1936 – The Skipper from “Gilligan’s Island.”
  • Judy Garland, Class of 1940 – She’s not in Kansas anymore.
  • James Garner, Class of 1944 – “Maverick” and “The Rockford Files.”
  • Carol Burnett, Class of 1951 – Do I really need to tell you about Carol? One of the greatest comedic actresses ever!
  • Vincent Bugliosi, Class of 1952 – Attorney who prosecuted the Manson Family for the Tate-La Bianca murders in August 1969 and defended Stephanie Stearns in the “Sea Wind” murders in 1974. He is also an accomplished author, having written many books about famous trials and incidents, including, among others, Helter Skelter, using the song from The Beatles’ “White Album” as the title for the book; The Betrayal of America: How the Supreme Court Undermined the Constitution and Chose Our President, about the Bush/Gore contest in 2000; and The Prosecution of George W. Bush for Murder, which I have not read yet.
  • Ricky Nelson, Class of 1958 – One of my favorite singers from early rock ‘n’ roll. I had tickets to his concert in Dallas on December 31, 1985. The show was canceled because Ricky was killed that afternoon in a plane crash.
  • Stephanie Powers, Class of 1960 – Tied with Shelley Winters as my favorite actress from the ’60s and ’70s. I loved her in “Hart to Hart” with Robert Wagner.
  • Meredith Baxter, Class of 1965 – Mom on “Family Ties”
  • John Ritter, Class of 1966 – Became a television favorite in “Three’s Company.”
  • Laurence Fishburne, Class of 1980 – Actor whom you might know best as Morpheus in the Matrix trilogy. I also recently found out that his wife is Gina Torres, also known as Jessica Pearson from “Suits,” one of my favorite current TV shows — new episodes begin July 16!
  • Sarah Jessica Parker, Class of 1983 – Actress from “Sex and the City,” which I have never watched. I know her more as the wife of Matthew Broderick who starred in WarGames, Ferris Beuhler’s Day Off, and Biloxi Blues.

Those are just a few. There are many more. See the Wikipedia entry for Hollywood High School if you’re interested.

With all those famous people graduating from just one high school, I started wondering about all the famous people who graduated from my high school: Henrietta M. King High School in Kingsville, Texas. Number of famous graduates: 1 — me!

King High School in Kingsville, Texas

Go Brahmas!

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

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