My name is Ted Gibbons from the class of 1950. I arrived in Aruba in 1940 after traveling to Curacao on board a passenger ship the SS Rotorua with my mother and sisters, Audrey and Elizabeth. We sailed from Southampton England, and didn't know if we would be able to complete our trip as the ship was torpedoed 3 days out, but didn't sink and we were able to continue our trip on one engine. Naturally the convoy we were with continued on and we continued our journey without any other ships escorting us. Arriving in Curacao we then boarded a 3 engine plane (CLICK ON THIS LINK TO SEE THE STORY OF THIS 3 ENGINE PLANE) (THEN CLICK BACK TO RETURN TO THIS PAGE) which looked like the Wright brothers had built and continued our trip to Aruba. CLICK ON PHOTO OF TED'S MOTHER TO GO TO LARGER VIEW.    
Our first house in Aruba was bungalow 476 located on the last row of houses. Behind our house were the large white fuel storage tanks. Directly across the street from us were the Aulows, then Walters, and further down the street was one of my graduating classmates Johnny Hagendoorn. Just up the street form us were the Morris's, and I often bowled against Larry but can't remember what bowling team he was on, but do know he was the manager and set up the bowling teams. Our second house was just two houses up the street 480 with a concrete block wall all around and a large patio. It was previously occupied by the Hawthorns. From this house we made our final move to 516 up on the hill close to the hospital.
My father was the dry-dock supervisor, and he and his crew were responsible for keeping the shuttle tankers in service. During the submarine attack when some of the tankers were torpedoed, the Pedernales was hit but didn't sink and floated down just off shore from Oranjestad. After the ship had burned out, my father and his crew cut the ship in two pieces, then towed the two sections to the dry-dock and rejoined them with steel plates and structural steel. The ship was then towed to the states were it was rebuilt.  CLICK ON PHOTO OF TED'S FATHER TO GO TO LARGER VIEW.  CLICK ON THE PHOTO OF THE PEDERNALES TO GO TO OTHER PHOTOS OF THE SHIP
I left Aruba after graduating in 1950 and my mother and father left a couple of years later as dad had a massive heart attack and had to take a medical retirement.
My sister Audrey stayed in Aruba awhile longer as she married Gene Molzer while in Aruba, and he was the manager of the New Esso Club.
I used to play a lot of golf while in Aruba and some of the best and most memorable rounds I ever played were with Bill Helwig, the Burbage twins, Bob Norcom and Al Leak.
Ted Gibbons
(class of 1950)