Howell (Rodriquez), Waunita

Waunita Howell-Rodriquez…. Hello from Spokane, WA.

I did not actually graduate with all of you but I should have! I attended Harrison Grade School, Emerson Junior High and Enid High.

To begin my saga I married Ray Rodriguez July 28, 1956 and started my senior year but became pregnant within the first month of marriage. I naturally wanted to hang out with all those married folks and lost interest in school. In April, 1958, Ray got out of the Air Force and we moved to Isleton, CA where I resided the next 30 years. In September 1958, I returned to high school and graduated from Rio Vista High School in June, 1959. My first born, Marianne was now 2 years old.

I was hired by a local manufacturing company that developed the first tomato harvester. I worked there till I was due to have my 2nd daughter Diana July 1, 1961. I gave birth to a son Ray in October 1963 and was a happy stay-at-home Mom when a neighbor came knocking and wondered if I would like to drive a school bus. I had no idea how to drive a school bus but he assured me he could teach me and he did. That was back in the day when kids would mind what you said and we had a great time. It was actually easier than it appeared. The great part was 3 months off in the summer with pay.

In March 1967 I was hired by the Post Office to work Saturday relief and gradually my hours were increased. I was able to juggle both jobs for several years. In September 1973 I was appointed Postmaster of the Isleton Post Office. In 1978 after 23 years of marriage Ray and I divorced. In 1983 I took an assignment to the district office in Sacramento, bought a house and moved to Sacramento. I had a 32 year career with the Postal Service and loved every minute of it. I spent 19 years as a single gal and did a lot of traveling for the Post Office, doing country swing dancing and riding my bicycle.

In October 1995, I met my 2nd husband Robert Fischbach. We began talking bicycle riding on that initial meeting and we were privileged to take 4 bicycle trips around Europe the next 5 years. Never did I ever dream I would go overseas but what a wonderful adventure. We married on the American River bicycle trail in Sacramento July 25, 1998 and we celebrated our 9th anniversary last month. In April 1999, I retired from the Post Office and in March 2002 we moved to Spokane WA. This is Robert’s hometown and his 94 year old Mother is still very active and living in the house he was raised in. Robert is self-employed and sells erosion control products; he has developed products of his own as well as representing others.

We are both very active in our church and enjoy traveling to visit my 4 grandchildren who are in New Jersey and Rob’s 2 grandchildren presently in Ft. Campbell, KY with parents in the Army. When they were stationed in Germany we made several trips to visit them.

Since retirement, I’ve been learning to quilt. This past year I finished my first quilt and will be showing it in the local quilt show this October. Our 8 year old Shih Tzu named Boomer keeps me busy also with our daily walks. I’m looking forward to getting reacquainted with the few kids I hung out with as well as all those I didn’t have the privilege of knowing as a kid. See Ya soon!

Howell, Waunita '07