Sunday, March 31, 2013

Nadine Berkland Magee BHS '47 (1929-2013)

Former Senior Bulldogs President, Nadine Magee, passed away recently we just learned.

Please keep her husband Bill and the family in your thoughts and prayers.


The following was in the Senior Bulldogs Newsletter

Former Longtime SENIOR BULLDOGS President

At the beginning of the April 1 Senior Bulldogs luncheon in Burbank, Gus Ghiselli announced to the alumni who were present that Nadine Berkland Magee had passed away two days earlier, on Saturday morning, March 30, 2013, just three days after her 84th birthday. She passed away at Northridge Hospital Medical Center. It was indeed very sad news for all of the alumni at the luncheon.

Nadine was born March 27, 1929, in Lake Mills, Iowa. Both of Nadine's parents were of full Norwegian descent. When she was two years old her family moved here to Glendale, where they lived for three or four years, and where Nadine went to Kindergarten. Then they moved to Burbank and Nadine began the 1st grade at Joaquin Miller Elementary on Providencia. She went the rest of the way through Miller, then John Muir Junior High, followed by BHS graduating in 1947. The family lived on Providencia Ave. while Nadine and her siblings were growing up. Her older brother, Ron, was BHS '45, sister, Sharon, five years younger than Nadine, began at BHS but finished at JBHS. They are both deceased. The youngest sister, Sue, is twelve years younger than Nadine, and went to JBHS. Sue currently lives in nearby Winnetka. Nadine was always involved in school activities during both junior high and high school. She was 'Senior Class Secretary' for the Class of '47. She was also a member of GAA, (Girl's Athletic Association). During her senior year Nadine was chosen to be the 'Aloha Queen', and future husband Bill was her escort for the event! In the September 2008 BHS Centennial Parade, 1947 Aloha Queen Nadine and Aloha Princess Dodie Moore '47, rode together in a classic Cadillac convertible belonging to Dodie's son-in-law. Nadine always headed-up the Class of '47 reunions held each five years from the 25th in 1972 to the 60th in 2007, a lot of work to be sure, but a labor of love for her. By 2012 she physically was not up to the task, and therefore no reunion was held

After BHS Nadine attended Glendale College for one year. She then studied nursing at Santa Rosa Community College in northern California, and after graduating became a nurse. She then returned to Burbank and first worked as a nurse at St. Joseph Hospital in Burbank for a short time. Nadine then went to work for Burbank obstetrician, Dr. Rombeau, in his office as his nurse. She worked for him for quite a few years, both before having children and after, and later would fill in when needed.

Nadine first met Bill Magee in September 1941 when they both began the 7th grade in Burbank at John Muir Junior High. In the 9th grade Nadine wore Bill's class ring on a chain around her neck! Bill says Nadine was very popular, and he usually had to "book a date" about a month ahead! As mentioned he was her date for the 1947 Aloha event where she was the Queen. Sometime after Nadine returned to Burbank after college in Santa Rosa she and Bill reunited. Bill said, "THANK GOODNESS we got back together after high school"! They were married on May 17, 1953, and her passing comes just seven weeks before their 60th wedding anniversary. They first lived in Canoga Park, and then for the last 46 years they have lived in Northridge. Bill and Nadine had two children, Teri and Patrick. Teri is also a nurse, and works at Northridge Hospital. She lives in Northridge. Bill says Teri has been "a life saver" in caring for Nadine at home, and at both Northridge Hospital and the rehab in Chatsworth where Nadine had been recently. Most Senior Bulldogs who attend the Burbank luncheons know that Teri is an 'Honorary Senior Bulldog', usually attending the luncheons and helping in many ways. Patrick Magee and his family live in Woodland Hills. He has a son, Ryan, and two daughters, Nicole, and Jennifer. Bill equates his and Nadine’s life together to this verse from Cinderella, “Once in a while, right in the middle of an ordinary life, love gives us a fairy tale.”

Bill Magee began to attend the Senior Bulldogs luncheons in Burbank in 1992 after he had retired in 1991. At that time there were only about 20 men who attended. They first met at El Chiquito Mexican Restaurant on Olive Ave. in Burbank, owned by Bob Gomez BHS '48, which was across the street from Warner Bros. Nadine was the first lady to attend any of the Senior Bulldogs luncheons! Bill took Nadine with him to one of the luncheons. Everyone knew Nadine, and vice versa. Soon the word spread and more ladies began to attend. The group then began holding the luncheons at Genio's Restaurant on Olive Ave., owned by Marvin Cecchini BHS '52, and Gene Cecchini BHS '54. After that the luncheons were held at the Burbank Holiday Inn for several years. Finally the move was made to the Burbank Elks Lodge on Hollywood Way where the monthly Burbank luncheons continue today on the first Monday of each month, (second Monday in September). Throughout all of these moves the attendance and membership continued to grow, and Nadine was there consistently. Nadine was the Senior Bulldogs Vice President for two years. Next she was the Senior Bulldogs President for about eight years right up until a couple of years ago when Carol Brown Baker '67 became the President. During all of the years that Nadine served, Bill Magee was the Senior Bulldogs Treasurer. All of the Burbank luncheon attendees will remember that every month about ten very nice stuffed animals were given to ten "lucky" ladies that month. Nadine and her daughter, Teri, spent time each month going out to find these animals to be given at the next luncheon. There are a number of classmates of Nadines' who regularly attend the Burbank luncheons, some like Ray Brown and Barbara Rogers Roberts who went all the way through school with her from Joaquin Miller, and several others like Al Copping, Junius "Jay" Davis, Ralph "Buddy" Day, Carmen Uharriet Gardina, Gus Ghiselli, Bette Murphy Hamer, Iris Brown Larson, Dodie Moore, Joyce Nelson Neumeier, and Bob Santoyo who went all through Muir and BHS with Nadine. These friendships stretch back more than 65 years to almost 80 years! Nadine Magee was a very loving lady. Bill Magee says, "she loved everyone all of the time"! Another love of Nadine's was animals, and animal rescue specifically. She and Teri have been involved for years with "Life 4 Paws" and "Cats, Inc.", and her passing will be missed there, also.

Nadine attended her last Senior Bulldogs luncheon in Burbank on December 3, 2012. On December 15 she fell and broke a hip. Over the next couple of months she had been in Northridge Hospital and then at a rehabilitation center in Chatsworth. After that she was at home for 18 days, but it then became necessary to return to Northridge Hospital, where she was for 5 days until her unexpected passing on the morning of Saturday, March 30. Nadine's sister, Sue, hosted a gathering for the family and their closest friends on April 13. This had been planned originally before Nadine's passing, so out-of-town relatives could come to see Nadine after her recuperation. After her death it became a time for them to come together to memorialize her wonderful life. Both Bill and Teri Magee plan to attend the May 6 Senior Bulldogs luncheon in Burbank at the Elks Lodge. While being together on that day there will be a time to celebrate the life of Nadine Berkland Magee with her husband and her daughter. They will have photos of Nadine, which will be shared, and will be hosting our dessert to honor her. Time will be given if any Senior Bulldogs wish to share a story or memory of Nadine. If you are in the Los Angeles area and would like to share in the celebration of Nadine Magee's life, then please do attend the May 6 luncheon at the Burbank Elks Lodge beginning at 11:00 A.M.

Written for the Senior Bulldogs Newsletter by Alan Landros ‘70

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