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The Voorhis Vikings






Jerry Voorhis always wanted to keep in touch with the alumni of the Voorhis School for Boys. Before the School was closed in 1938, alumni were welcomed back on weekends, and one of the cottages was designated as the Alumni House. After Jerry was elected to Congress and the School was closed, he continued to meet with alumni whenever possible. The meetings were ordinarily held at either the San Dimas property of the former School or at the School Camp in Mammoth Lakes. For many years, the alumni maintained the Camp. It was turned over to the Boys and Girls Club of East San Gabriel Valley in 1975. It continues to be operated by the Club as Camp Voorhis Viking. In 2002, 298 children were able to enjoy its outdoor experience. The Voorhis Viking Alumni Association also gave the Club an endowment fund to provide "camperships" for especially needy children.

Voorhis alumni provided scholarships to worthy students for many years out of the Voorhis Viking Alumni Association treasury. Later they established a scholarship endowment fund at Claremont Graduate University. Jerry Voorhis had been the first graduate from that school, earning a Master's degree in history from it in 1928, writing his thesis on “The Education of an Institution Boy”. Finally, in 2002, Voorhis alumni established the Jerry Voorhis Memorial Scholarship Fund at Cal Poly Pomona University.

Many homeless and orphaned boys of all races were cared for at the Voorhis School during the ten-year period it operated. They went on to distinguish themselves in the armed forces during World War II and the Korean and Vietnam wars, as well as in their professions and ongoing community service. Perhaps the best evidence of the strength of Jerry's personality and the inspiration he provided is that the Voorhis Viking Alumni Association continued to function for over 60 years after the Voorhis School for Boys closed.

  -Chris Wain*
Voorhis School Alumnus
Class of 1936

*Ben O’Brien, Class of 1933, Mary Glasgow and Joan Stevens, widow and daughter of Price Glasgow, Class of 1934, also contributed to this article, which was written in