Mar-Ken School


Mar-Ken School / Lawlor Professional School


   This site would not have been possible without the contributions of Mar-Ken and Lawlor alum. Many thanks to those who have contributed information, pictures and memories. If you have anything to share, please email Alan Simon at

   Thanks to...  

Sandra Barnett (Hoffert) for her photos of the 2005 Reunion.

George Billings for making the "Lawlor Professionals" casting book (1935) available for copying.

Dave Burnett for the loan of his 1952 Yearbook and for his memories of Mar-Ken.

Doug Call for the 1956 Mexico trip photos and Mexico summer school photos.

Ben Chadwell for his memory of Lawlor and Mar-Ken students, his insights about the school leadership and his verification of many rumors as fact about the schools.

Pat Conlin for loan of the 1941 Mar-Ken Yearbook, Mar-Ken Journals, and her magnificent personal scrapbook.

Diana Serra Cary for sharing her memories of Lawlor Professional School and for permission to quote her wonderful books, "Hollywood's Children, An Inside Account of the Child Star Era," and "What Ever Happened to Baby Peggy, the Autobiography of Hollywood's Pioneer Child Star," and for the 1935 Lawlor Professional School student and graduation photographs.

Eric Davidson for the loan of his 1940, 1941, and 1942 Mar-Ken Junior High School Yearbooks, and for his collection of Lawlor and Mar-Ken Journals. Eric has also contributed many of his photographs and he has identified numerous classmates in the Annuals. His contributions are wonderful additions to the collection.

Edith Fellows for sharing her memories of Lawlor Professional School.

Laurence M. Feldman for the loan of his 1950, 1951, 1953 and 1954 Mar-Ken School Yearbooks, the obituary of Mrs. Bessire, and the 1954 Mar-Ken Review admission ticket. And, for allowing to copy snapshots of Kenya Kennedy, Margot Grade, and Kenya and Leslie Crawford, as well as photos of the 1954 Mexico Trip group photo, and photos of the 1953 Jamboree.

Richard Gardner for stories about Mar-Ken days and snapshots from his school days.

Elizabeth Haddaway (Hickman) for the loan of her 1945, 1946, and 1947 Mar-Ken School Yearbooks, her 1947 class pin, and for identifying many of her schoolmates in her Yearbooks.

Barry Isquith for the photo of the 1956 Mar-Ken Senior Letter sweater.

Betty Kesling (Costa) for the 1942 and 1943 Mar-Ken Junior High School Yearbooks and identification of students therein.

Frank Kesling for his memories of Mar-Ken.

Patricia Killen for supplying photographs and a 1941 diploma from her mother, Pat Merifield's, collection.

Mike McDonnell Vice President, Upper School Facilty, Montclair College Preparatory School, for his time scanning Montclair Yearbook photographs of Mar-Ken students who transferred to Montclair.

Gloria McGibbon (Woods) for the 1946 Mar-Ken Intermediate and Junior High School Yearbook.

Joseph Michels for the loan of photos of Mrs. B and Kent, the 1953 graduating class, the June 22, 1953 issue of the Valley Times, the Mar-Ken Jamboree Program, business cards of Ethel and Kent Bessire, the Mar-Ken letterhead, and the 1953-1954 Mar-Ken calendar of events.

Andrea Morgan (Ambler) for her many insights about Mar-Ken School and the kids and faculty who attended in Sherman Oaks and for photos from the Mexico summer school. Also for her video recording of the 2005 Reunion.

Frank Pappalardo for his memories of classmates at Mar-Ken Hollywood.

Alan Picker for his memories of Mar-Ken.

Jay Pierce for his skilled video editing and duplication of the 2005 Reunion video.

Lynne Porter for the photos of Mrs. Bessire; for the back yard photos of the Buck Jones House, Sherman Oaks; the pool side photo in Mexico, and for her personal memories of Mar-Ken.

Ron Reid for the loan of his 1957 Mar-Ken Yearbook and for his photos of the 2005 Reunion.

Camille Redlich (Dreyfus) for the loan of her 1954 Mar-Ken student pin and graduation ring so that photographs could be made.

Neil Shattuc, who grew up as a neighbor of Mar-Ken School Hollywood, for his recollection of the school, its students and the neighborhood in the 1930s and 1940s.

Maggie Shidler for the loan of her 1955, 56 and 57 Mar-Ken Yearbooks, and for her continuing support of this project. A special thanks to Maggie and her husband Ernie Doud for hosting the 2005 Lawlor/Mar-Ken School Reunion.

Joan Simon for her photos of the 2005 Reunion.

Ken Simon for all his talent and hard work in website design and posting of the data. Without his hours of work, none of this would have been possible.

George Smith of Brownsville, California, for donating the 1938 Mar-Ken School Graduation Program.

Martin Spellman for his memories of Mar-Ken School and his generous loan of his 1940, 1941, 1942, and 1943 Mar-Ken School Yearbooks; 1942 Commencement Program; 1943 Commencement and Baccalaureate Programs; 1943 graduation invitation; Mar-Ken Journals Volume II, Numbers 1 and 2; and his class pin.

Captain Larry Stuppy, director and then principal of the Hollywood Professional School until the Summer of 1984, for his information about the history of that school.

Ardy Thomas for the 1939-40 Mar-Ken Information Bulletin, the 1940 Baccalaureate Program, and the 1940 Commencement Exercise Program.

Jack Wells for the photo of 1955 Summer School house in Cuernavaca, Mexico and for his loan of his 1955 Mar-Ken Yearbook.

Dr. Ramon Werts for alumni leads and a bit of Mar-Ken history.

Malvin Wessel for the loan of his 1948 and 1949 Mar-Ken School Yearbooks.

Gerry Morgan Williams for sharing her memories of the origins of the name Mar-Ken and her other valuable information, as well as for the loan of her 1944 Mar-Ken School Yearbook, Transvia.


copyright 2009 Alan Simon