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Homecoming: Where we are today

Yes&Know ' By Aline Yamashita

The Academy of Our Lady of Guam Class of 1974 is celebrating its 50th Golden Jubilee.


We began the celebration with mass at the Agana Cathedral where we graduated 50 years ago. Perhaps the most poignant part of the gathering was the candles of our sisters who were smiling from above. Brenda did a superb job placing their photos on them. Sister Tess, Bobbie J., Cerila, Elsie, Mila, Patty and Elena were present.

Classes of 1974 from ND, FD, and AOLG will celebrate at mass on July 13 at Santa Theresita Church. AOLG will proceed to Tsubaki Towers to make more memories.

Arriola’s Beach on Sunday will be a gathering spot for chow and fun.  I can hardly wait. We are happy that 17 of our classmates are coming home. There are 18 of us here ready to welcome them.

Some can’t return – like Cyndi. She and I once lived in the Trust Territory Compound. Hearing from her brought back great memories of bike riding & walking to J&G to buy candy.

 Or Norene who is taking care of her grandchildren.  A most precious guardian angel, Norene’s resilience will help her family cope with the grieving process for Cami, a daughter who succumbed to cancer way too young. Understanding death is tough.

Or Merci who is home taking care of family. Bobbie & Maria would have been the life of the party but returning is not in the cards.

 Or Brenda who was Alicia’s and my lunch partner.

What we’ve done with our lives the past 50 years is grand. Here is a sampling.

Family is a high priority on our list. Higher is our faith. We have expertise in education, science, finance, business, hospitality, airlines, insurance, restaurants, health care, law and music.

Aurora served the poor, seniors, children, unaccompanied minors, immigrants, and incarcerated adults looking for jobs. She worked mostly in finance.

Anne Marie and Frank opened DeCaro’s Italian Restaurant in Spokane. They added a bakery, deli and gift shop.

Bren’s love of music has her onstage. She is the co-music director for the Guam War Survivors Memorial Foundation and a member of the FestPac delegation.

Marie, Margaret and Evelyn provide service leadership at church. Cil provides leadership with the Catholic School System.

Josephine worked as a researcher in public health science and service at CDC. Alicia kept the books in order at FHP/Take Care. Rosemary, Bobbie R and Joyce worked at financial institutions. Doris provided award-winning leadership throughout veterans’ events alongside her husband, Tomas. Cathy also provided support as a military family.

Marilyn served as Dean of the School of Education and now toils the earth at Salas Gardens. Nieves makes a difference in education as well as being the regional expert in special education. Paula keeps Guam’s Retirement Agency in good shape.

Joann, our Eveready battery, provided leadership at private and public organizations.

Kika worked at United Airlines. MayAnn became a clinical laboratory scientist and director of her lab, which was recognized as lab of the year. Katrina is an expert in billing/coding for Medicare.

 Family and faith continue to be priorities for Bev, our class president.      

Children and grandchildren continue to be Ann’s, Kathy’s, Tina’s, Merci’s, Bobbie’s and Gen’s focus. Doll worked at Public Health.

Velma was a veterinarian. Emma, a lawyer. Jean worked with a law firm. Anne Therese worked at the Office of the Public Auditor. Theresa retired from GM and now, helps Christina with grandson Noah.

Adele helped families as a psychotherapist in California as well as teaching and counseling at San Francisco State University.

Bernice helped families navigate the world of autism. Delores keeps Onedera Store successful. Sandra worked in early childhood education. Jules, as a speech therapist, helped students find joy with their voices. Janice spurs happiness with music. She provided leadership to build the House of Chamorros in San Diego. Maria’s laughter continues to echo. Anita will always be a part of us.

There are others – Irene, Rose, Char, Mary and more.

I’m a teacher who continues to learn about love and life from Eric, Ryan and Christine and Chia. Through it all, the Blessed Virgin Mary holds my hand.

We give thanks for the blessings bestowed upon us, which AOLG helped mold.

Aline Yamashita is a mom, a teacher and former senator. She served in the 31st and 32ndGuam Legislatures. Send feedback to




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