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History Summaries
Los Angeles Memories

3559 Veteran Ave.,
Los Angeles, CA 90034

by Vaughn Aubuchon

From 1955 to 1960, it was
3559 Veteran Ave.,
Westside Village,
Los Angeles, Zone 34, Calif.
rmont 9-0232

3359 Veteran Ave. aerial photo
In 2005, the Jacaranda tree dominates the right side of the photo.
The house is twice as big now, after remodeling.


Suzanne S. Stephens - Spring 1956
Suzanne Shelly Stephens (3) and
Vaughn Aubuchon (11) - Early 1956
In front of 3559 Veteran Ave., LA Zone 34, CA


300 - 450

Suzanne Stephens birthday party
June 15, 1955 - Suzanne's 3rd birthday party

leukemia power lines

My bed headboard was under the corner window.
Suzanne's bed headboard was DIRECTLY under the 240 volt electrical service entering the building.
(240 Volts RMS = 679 Volts Peak-to-Peak, plus spurious harmonics from the 8Mhz. 1kW Radio transmitter 3 doors down)
Inside, her head was 2 feet away from the electrical service panel.
She spent 10 hours every day in that location.

After the Scandinavian studies established linkage between leukemia and power lines, a plethora of more recent studies (funded by the energy industry) have fallen all over themselves attempting to disprove any such link.
Open your eyes, folks.
Trust no one. Everyone has an agenda.
Question everything.

Or, was it the benzene that caused the leukemia?

"Since 1897, it has been known that benzene causes bone marrow destruction."
Mom painted every room in the house with Sherwin-Williams Kem-Tone paint, which contained no benzene. But all the enamel trim paint is a different story, and especially the solvents used with the oil-based enamel paints. Benzene was banned from most household products in 1978. I remember that the attending physicians asked a lot of questions about the paint. They studied my blood, too. Earlier, mom had also painted inside at 1966 Preuss Rd.
The high tension wires were just outside the second story bedroom window.

Is it possible that the doctors knew more than they told? Did they personally think that it was a 100% case of benzene exposure? After all, what would it accomplish? Nothing but personal recriminations for having used the toxic paint, right? Hmmm. I wonder if the medical records are available.

Benzene Lawyer

Suzanne Shelly Stephens

In either or both cases, it was assault by environment.
What about the case of benzene exposure,
coupled with electromagnetic radiation, and dense smog?
How many studies have looked at these three together?
Zero, for sure.
Just too many variables. And no time or money.
Rachel Carlson got it right.
We are all constantly under assault by corporate interests. Making a dollar is always more important than people's health.


380 - 450

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Suzanne Stephens and Doris Stephens
Suzanne Stephens and Doris Stephens (mom)
Under the Jacaranda in March 1956
Front yard at 3559 Veteran Ave., Los Angeles, CA
The Sperling house is across the street.
Mr. Sperling worked at
Helms Bakery.

Doris Stephens and Suzanne Stephens
Doris Stephens (1921-2006) and Suzanne Stephens
Back yard at 3559 Veteran Ave., Los Angeles, CA
The Jacaranda tree in the front yard can be seen above the roof line in Summer 1956.
I would have been building stuff in my electronics shed just behind the photographer,and mom would have a radio on the kitchen window sill with KFWB playing the top ten tunes.
Note the power lines. The smog in the photo is palpable.
Suzanne's tummy is bloated from the treatment.

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Suzanne Stephens

Suzanne Stephens close up
Suzanne at the wheel of the brand new 1955 Chevrolet.
Suzanne was born on July 15, 1952.

Suzanne S. Stephens headstone
Inglewood Park Cemetery
November 2006 will mark the 50th anniversary of Suzanne's passing.
Suzanne passed away from leukemia on Nov. 20, 1956 at the UCLA Medical Center.
She lies in rest at Inglewood Park Cemetery, in the Land of Nod.
Many thanks to Joan R. Shanahan of Inglewood Park for the photograph.

My mother was Mrs. Doris Stephens (1921-2006)
(Medical Records Librarian at St.Johns Hospital for 13 years,
Doris Aubuchon)
My step-father (1921-1997) was Mr. Robert William Stephens (Houston Fearless, RCA).
Both Doris and Robert are interred at Forest Lawn, Hollywood Hills.

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Doris Stephens and Robert Stephens, Jr.
Doris Stephens (mom) and Bob Stephens, Jr.
Front yard at 3559 Veteran Ave., Los Angeles, CA
There's that Jacaranda tree again in 1957.

Robert Stephens Jr., Los Angeles
Diane, granddaugthter of the Van Ness family, holds Robert Stephens, Jr.
In front of the Van Ness home next door in 1957.

Next Door Neighbors - Christmas 1957
Jack Slaughter - Verne Slaughter
Left to Right -
Back: Audrey Slaughter UCLA hiding, (unknown dude), Doris Stephens (mom), Verne Slaughter (movie studio hairdresser)
Front: Dennis Slaughter, Ruff, Jack Slaughter (Hughes Aircraft)

Because I was older than Dennis, I sometimes treated him poorly. I apologize for that now.
We collected toads and frogs from the creek access on Military Ave., down near National Blvd.
We both had butterfly collections. Do 'em in, stick 'em with a pin.
We were always seeking the elusive Buckeye butterfly, usually found in dry, open lots.

But all that meant little when Elvis Presley came along.
We played "Hound Dog" over and over and over and over and . . .
All Shook Up - Heartbreak Hotel - Wear My Ring

I spent 1957, 1958, and 1959 in St. Helens, Oregon - 7th grade, 8th grade and 9th grade.

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Los Angeles Backyard Incinerator
Incinerator Man - 1960

In 1960, I attended 10th grade at Hamilton High School on Robertson Blvd.
(The white bungalow behind me on the former Van Ness property can be seen in the recent aerial photograph at the top of this page, on the left hand side.)
Modern Angelinos have no idea that we used to burn our trash in
backyard concrete incinerators.

The garbage went into a pail, and all burnables went into the trash burner. No wonder the smog got so bad in the late 1950's. Fires in EVERY backyard (until 1957, when back yard burning was banned).

The door to my Amateur Radio electronics shed is on the left.
W6DQO lived on Greenfield Ave. (same block)
Do you know what 1000 Watts of RF power does to a crystal set, at 150 feet away?
The first time, it scared the he|| out of me.

I had set up an always-on crystal set on the wall using a speaker instead of headphones.
It had a 75 foot antenna, a toilet-paper-roll coil, a diode, and a ground.
KDAY played loudly on the speaker using NO POWER source, just the RF.

And then,
BAM! W6DQO fired up his kilowatt transmitter on 40 meters -
undemodulated single-sideband audio,
and the speaker 2 feet away from my head blasted me
at Lord-only-knows what volume level.

Jumped right out of my skin.
A bolt of lightning from the sky.
I became an instant electronics freak forever.
Kinda like what Moses must have felt on the mountain.

To D.A. - This has always bothered me.

In 1960, during 10th grade at Hamilton High on Robertson Blvd., I met D.A., We became great friends. We both loved basketball, though neither of us were stars. We used to play at the Robertson Recreation Center. We used to swim at the Cheviot Hills Recreation Center. We lusted after the same hot chicks, such as Joanie Adelman, who had me wrapped around her little finger, Karen Roth, Evy Benjamin, etc. I think that D. and I both felt we were intellectual equals.

I got D. interested in Amateur Radio. Mr. Brown was our Radio Shop teacher. We both got some WW2 surplus transmitters and receivers - 80 or 40 meters, as I recall. We modified them for 120VAC use, but we had little success in communicating - I lived in Westside Village on Veteran, and D. lived on Roxbury Dr., off of Pico Blvd. - maybe 3 miles away.

Then my stepfather's RCA job took him to San Francisco, and we moved to San Mateo. I never spoke with D. again.

In 1965, a friend on mine told me that he had met D., and that D. had asked if he knew a Vaughn Aubuchon. My friend, of course, knew me well.

He told me how D.A. had graduated from college, and become an engineer, with a great job, and that things were going great for him. I did not call D.A. I've always wondered what D. thought of me after that. Today, it seems silly. But it wasn't then.

The reason I didn't call him, is that I was unemployed, had not gone to college, and I was living hand to mouth. I felt . . . bad. Reduced, inadequate, of little worth, unworthy of D's consideration. Before we were equals, now we weren't. Then, there was also the aspect of my sister's demise, which brought back bad memories of Veteran Ave.

I was once going to try and call D. a few years ago. My excuse was that there were too many D.A.s in Los Angeles (maybe 3), and I might call the wrong one.

Maybe some day I will call.

Perky and Don lived a few doors north up the street.
Jimmy Green lived at the end of the block.
Across the street from the Fitzgeralds.

I used to babysit for the Sperlings across the street. He worked at Helms Bakery.
They had a "Gray's Anatomy" textbook - fascinating to this 11 year old.

Earl, the divorced loner, lived across the street. Kinda like I am now.
Eileen Straussman (Manhattan, New York) lived across the street, but I didn't know her then. But then, I had trouble remembering our neighbors right next door, on the other side!
Mr. and Mrs. Van Ness.

In 1960, Robert Stephens was transferred from RCA Los Angeles, to RCA San Francisco.
We moved to
118 W. Hillsdale Ave., San Mateo, CA.
I attended Hillsdale High School.
The famous football coach Dick Vermeil was my PE teacher.
Bob bought a new 1960 Ford Galaxy.
In 1961, Bob was transferred once again to RCA in Palm Beach, Florida.
I remained behind to finish 11th grade with Ron Fisher and family, Greg, Paula and Adria.

(Note: In 2006, I just bought a 1961 Hillsdale High yearbook on eBay,
that belonged to RON FISHER! It's truly a small world.)
This was the last time I lived with my mom, Robert, and Robert Jr..
I then shipped out to
St. Helens, OR, and a stern 12th grade with my father.

Veteran Ave. timeline

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Vaughn's Other
PALMS, CA 90034 Related Pages

* 3345 Mentone Ave.

3559 Veteran Ave.

Aubuchon Photos

Charnock Rd. School

Doris Stephens

Hamilton High

Hamilton Old Yearbooks

Old Packer Fam. Photos

Old Palms Theater

Old Palms, CA Phone


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While living at 3559 Veteran Ave., I attended
Charnock Road Elem. School
in 1955 and 1956.

Before Veteran Ave., in the early fifties, I lived at
3345 Mentone Ave., Los Angeles

Have A Great Day!
Vaughn Aubuchon Author Bio

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©2005-06, 2019 Vaughn Aubuchon
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This Vaughn's Palms Westside Village, CA 1950's house
webpage was last updated on 2019-10-05.