|Name||David R. Hernandez, Jr.|
North Hollywood, California 91609, United States
|| September 06, 1948
Jan 10, 2017 03:39pm
|Info||David R. Hernandez Jr. was born September 6, 1948 at the Doctors Hospital in Los Angeles, California. His father's occupation was listed as a Banana Cutter and his mother was a housewife. The family lived next door to the grandparents on Sichel Street in Lincoln Heights, California. His father went to school and took a job as a clerk at an insurance company. Through his father's hard work and efforts, the family moved out of the "Neighborhood" relocating to North Hollywood in 1955. |
The tract home was purchased for 13,000.00 dollars. The new neighborhood was very different from Sichel street. At that time, the 170 Hollywood freeway had not yet been built. Instead, there was a Wash, which ran from Roscoe Boulevard to Vanowen. Jackrabbits ran freely on the trails adjacent to the tract homes.
The Circus had a winter home near Saticoy street , animals could be seen on a morning run in the wash
David went to Saticoy Street School on Coldwater Canyon. He would walk home past the turnip field with the other neighborhood kids. The kids were an 'Our Gang" lot, who built an underground forts and had dirt clod fights for territory.
David then attended Madison Jr. High School. This seemed like the big leagues. Walks home would include a stop at the dairy on Sherman Way where a K-mart now stands.
Elkwood Street was quite a cul-de-sac, pre freeway (no sound wall still). Neighbors would have pool parties with friends and family.
On the weekends the kids would walk to the "Lankershim", a walk -in movie theater on Lankershim Blvd., near Saticoy. Sometimes, a trip south, to the El Portal, a little higher -class walk -in. If it was a special occasion, then a trip to the "Gem" of the area was in order. This "gem" was the Fox walk-in on Van Nuys Blvd. near Victory. This was a rare treat. This was going "downtown".
Poly High School came next. This was 1963, times were a-changing. Van Nuys Boulevard was the "happening" place. Car clubs, Van Nuys Bob's (Bob's Big Boy) and cruising the Boulevard. American Graffiti anyone?
Spending money came from working at the Valley Plaza car wash, third vacuum from the right. The hard work paid off with a promotion to Detailer, which led to good tips!
The summer weekend included trips to Hansen Dam. At that time, there was a real lake, not concrete ponds. David, his brother Robert, and all the neighborhood kids such as Larry Stein, Robin Donaty, and the Toon brothers, learned to water ski on the lake. Fishing and family fun was the order of the day.
There were also trips to the stables for horseback riding in the area near the dam. There were occasional visits to Sun Valley Park, the large pool being well worth the walk.
David graduated Poly in 1966. Vietnam was the war of the day, and this called for a trip down to the Valley Plaza to the Naval Recruiter. David and Larry were going to enlist on the "Buddy System" and see the world. Larry did not pass, but David did, so it was a solo trip to boot camp in San Diego.
David was assigned to an air squadron based in Norfolk, Virginia. Soon he was off to sea on a 9 month West Pac Cruise. "On Line" off the coast of Vietnam. It was six days consisting of 12 hours on, then 12 hours off, but all at sea. Trips to ports during R&R included Philippines, Japan, China, Australia, New Zealand, Spain, and Rio. Following two more cruises, the Med and the North Atlantic, David received an honorable discharge, and went back home to North Hollywood.
North Hollywood in 1971 was filled with earthquakes and a family to raise. Three children, Lisa, Brian, and Darren. David worked for the Los Angeles Police department for four years, driving a police tow truck which assisted disabled police vehicles. He received a commendation for his part in assisting in the evacuation of an apartment building, which had caught fire early one morning.
David was asked to join his father in the Insurance Adjustment business. Their office was at First Street in Los Angeles. The business grew and moved to Long Beach. David worked with his father for eleven years, then was employed by an investigation company in Glendale. David eventually left to help form a Special Investigation Unit of a new insurance company.
In 1989, David went out on his own and started a small adjusting business, which he still operates today.
During the past years David has experienced many of life's challenges. These included, illness of a child (requiring years of treatment at County hospitals), divorce after an 18 year marriage and financial hardships.
There were also many opportunities to serve the community on a one to one basis. David is not a community activist per se, but has been active in the community for almost 16 years.
Together with his life partner and love, Debi, they have helped hundreds of men, women and children. Individuals of every race, age, sexual preferences, and religion (or lack of), were given help in regaining their dignity, self-respect, and the ability to be self-supporting. From freeway off-ramps, skid row, hospitals, parks and jails, individuals have come to find a new life with the help and support David has offered them.
David holds beliefs which are open, honest, and inclusive of all Americans. "Our Common Welfare Should Come First" is not just a "bumper sticker" sound bite, but a true core value. Regardless of the issue, this value must be the bedrock of discussion and resolve.