Dear MVC Alumni,

Earlier this month, I attended a service celebrating the life of James Bard, member of the MVC Class of 1950. I am so grateful I got to know James when he visited campus several times in the year and a half I’ve been at MVC. Though no one knew it at the time, his last visit was to attend Homecoming weekend and participate in the prayer service for the Don Price Performing Arts Chapel. How fitting that this faithful supporter who gave toward this project over decades was able to see its realization begin here at his beloved alma mater.

Relationships like this - those that span generations and time but keep our school family close-knit - are treasures. They are an important part of what makes MVC unique and committed to our original mission for 93 years. This is why we invite our alumni back for Homecoming each year (see below for 2019 info), why we keep you posted on what’s going on here, and why we share what’s happening in your lives with your classmates.

Check out the Alumni Spotlight and Mustang Notes to see if you find some familiar faces, and send your own updates to for our next issue. Let’s stay in touch!


Nikki Daniels
Assistant Head of School


Homecoming 2019

Calling all MVC alumni! Mark your calendars and plan to “come home” to 2 School Way for Homecoming 2019. Highlights for Saturday, October 19 will include:

- Homecoming Parade
- Inductions into the MVC Hall of Fame and the Mustang Ring of Honor

- Campus tours, including progress on the Don Price Performing Arts Chapel
- Pre-Game Tailgate

- Football Game

- Reunions for 5- and 10-year anniversary classes

If you are a member of the Classes of 2014, 2009, 2004, 1999, 1994, 1989, 1984, 1979, 1974, 1969, 1964, 1959, or 1954… contact Nikki Daniels to initiate plans for a reunion!

Mustang Notes

Progress on the Don Price Performing Arts Chapel

Alumni and friends can watch MVC’s new Don Price Performing Arts Chapel take shape before their very eyes by viewing the time-lapse video on MVC’s website. The concrete foundation was poured in February and March, and we anticipate the walls to begin appearing any day now. The MVC student body eagerly anticipates opening school for the 2020-2021 school year in this new, state-of-the-art facility.

Dr. Dehner is Back!

MVC alumni who graduated in the last twenty years will no doubt recognize the name Dr. Tony Dehner. A nationally renowned vocal music educator, Dr. Dehner led MVC’s choral programs from 2002 through 2016, at which point he and his wife Ruth relocated to Texas. It is with joy and anticipation that we welcome Dr. Dehner back to the MVC faculty in the 2019-2020 school year as Vocal Arts Director. You can read more about Tony and his new role on our website


Alumni Notes

Ray Houlihan ‘50
did a masterful job covering Homecoming 2018 photographically from start to finish. He was kind enough to share his work with MVC, and it is available for the enjoyment of all on our website.MVC is grateful to Ray for the many hours he poured into taking, processing, and making these images available to capture a memorable weekend for posterity.

Clinton "Skip" Skipton '00 returned to his alma mater in February to assume the role of Campus Technology Specialist. Skip reflects, "I am blessed to have had an amazing experience growing up and graduating from MVC. To be able to return now and work with technology in a Christ-centered atmosphere is exciting. It’s great to be back!!" In his spare time when he’s not serving at MVC, Skip enjoys spending time with wife Charissa (pictured here), children Jasiah, Isabella, Juliette, and Scarlett, and their two dogs, horse, cat, snake, and rabbit.

Dr. Sheryl Uyeda ‘02 serves as a missionary surgeon at Kudjip Nazarene Hospital in Papua New Guinea. She is back in the US this spring and looking forward to sharing her journey and ministry with current MVC students on April 25-26. More details about Sheryl’s work are also available on her blog.

Andres "Andy" Plascencia '16 stopped by MVC on a break from Azusa Pacific University where he’s finishing up a degree in business management while also serving as an Undergraduate Business Assistant and an Admissions Intern. He was surprised to know that he’s remembered fondly not just in the minds and hearts of his MVC teachers, but also on the wall in the Business Office! Andy’s looking forward to pursuing his M.B.A. as the next step in his educational journey.

Brianna Van Deusen '11 currently serves as a full-time registered nurse in the Trauma Nursing Unit at the UC Davis Medical Center. While earning both her BSN and RN degrees from Sacramento State University with Sigma Theta Tau honors, Bri volunteered with Reach Air Medical Services, providing pre-hospital, emergency critical care to patients.

Jordan De Los Santos '12 directed and produced the most recent MVC commercial currently running in area movie theaters (also available on our website). Alumni will recognize MVC graduate and Watsonville police officer Rudy Lopez ‘02, who is featured along with current student Noah Garcia ‘19 (pictured left). Thank you, Jordan, Rudy, and Noah, for representing MVC so well and encouraging future Mustangs to check us out!

Alumni Spotlight

Dr. Deana (Garrett '84) Porterfield

There was no grand plan. Dr. Deana (Garrett ‘84) Porterfield didn’t have a defined set of goals and objectives designed to get her where she is today when she enrolled at MVC in 7th grade, nor when she graduated six years later. Rather, the first female president of Roberts Wesleyan College and Northeastern Seminary in Rochester, New York, points to opportunities and experiences she was afforded at MVC as most influential in determining her life’s unexpected course.

When she reflects on her time at MVC, Deana remembers the chance to do just about anything and everything. She was enrolled in what was then called the “non-college prep track” so her focus was more on activities than academics. Along with other students, she started a band in 8th grade, cheered, sang in the inaugural Master’s Voice, edited the yearbook, and even played tennis her senior year. That year was unique in other ways, as a family member encouraged her to begin considering college. Although she had never been college-minded before, the thought of attending a university sparked an interest in pursuing academics more earnestly, which landed her on MVC's honor roll. Stirred by new dreams of a college future, and inspired by the excellent tutelage of MVC music teacher Mark Ferguson, she decided to pursue a music education major at Azusa Pacific University.

Little did she know when she arrived at APU at age 18, God would call her to a twenty-six year career on campus, starting with an Admissions Counselor role and culminating in the position of Executive Vice President of APU’s Online University. During these years, she earned both master’s and doctoral degrees that positioned her to the take the unexpected call to the presidency from Roberts Wesleyan College and Northeastern Seminary in 2014.

Deana shares, “Some people point to academic preparation when asked about their high school years, and Monte Vista absolutely did that. More importantly, though, MVC taught me how to step forward with confidence in new ideas, to lean into new opportunities, and afforded me tremendous leadership opportunities. My confidence came from experiential learning. There are amazing leadership skills within students that you don’t necessarily see in an academic setting… I’m a perfect example of that. MVC wasn’t about the grades. For me, it was the opportunity to try new things and build resilience. That’s what gave me the courage for the journey ahead.”

Today, as she leads over 1,700 students at a 153-year-old institution of Christian higher education, Deana is quick to point out that it’s her God-given strengths of belief and responsibility that give her the desire to make a difference. “I’m driven by my strong belief system. It’s not the titles; those just came with the journey.” And though she didn’t know it at the time, the journey largely started on the sidelines at the soccer games, in the yearbook press room, on the tennis courts, and on stage. To this day, Deana treasures a silver dollar that then-MVC Headmaster Don Price presented to her and fellow members of a vocal trio (pictured below). He told the three girls that he was “investing in them for the future,” and few would disagree that Mr. Price’s investment has yielded valuable returns.

In Memoriam

James "Jim" Bard '50 passed into the arms of his Savior on February 16, 2019 from his home in Roseville, California and surrounded by loved ones. One of nine children born to missionaries serving in China, Jim served 25 years in the US Army and was, along with Martha Price, an inaugural member of the MVC Hall of Fame. His last visit to campus was this past October, when he was able to celebrate the beginning of the Don Price Performing Arts Chapel - a project he faithfully supported, both financially and prayerfully, over many decades.

A number of his MVC classmates and lifelong friends are pictured (left) at his memorial service on March 1, 2019. They include (seated from left) Diane (Mast ‘54) Downer, Marilyn Wagner ‘54, Barbara (Meyer ‘56) Long, Eleanor (Vigna ‘54) Anetsky, Alan Anetsky, Dale Lebeck ‘64 and (standing from left) Leah (Price ‘64) Lebeck, Esther (Johnson ‘53) Jessee, Ray Houlihan ‘50, Alvin Kruger ‘53, and Stanley Jessee ‘48.

Dr. William "Bill" Reid IV '96 passed away on January 14, 2019. He is greatly missed by his wife, Fulvia, and their three children, Daniel, age 18, Guillermo, age 9, and Eliana, age 5.

After attending MVC for high school, Bill enrolled in Willamette University in Salem, Oregon where he earned a bachelor's degree in biology and played football. He went on to obtain his medical degree from UCSF, then completed his internship and residency at UCLA Medical Center. UCLA is where he would stay for the next 10 years, starting in 2009 when he joined the faculty. Bill served in many roles as a teacher of residents, direct care attending, and as a triage officer. UCLA paid tribute to Dr. Reid in a piece that highlights his numerous academic achievements.

Bill's sister, Brooke, remembers her brother fondly. "He was quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to anger. He was clever and patient, and passionate about his career and his family." She also recalls his time at MVC: "While playing football his senior year in high school, in 1995, he rushed for 265 yards and 5 touchdowns on 7 carries in one game, an event that we have reminisced about often."

Jeff "Doni" Rindone '97 passed away on January 6, 2019. He grew up in Santa Cruz County and continued to live locally after attending MVC for high school. Doni's love of sports spanned from playing basketball at MVC to being a devoted Giants, Warriors, and 49er fan. He is greatly missed by his work family at Palapas Restaurant where he spent the last 24 years.

Jeff will be remembered fondly as having, "an admirable loyalty to his friends. His friends were family to him and he was always there for them. He had a way of making everyone feel special. Jeff had a large family whom he cared very deeply about. They were all always on his mind and he cherished many memories they have had."


Homecoming 2018

The first weekend in October saw the return of many beloved MVC alumni for a variety of events and gatherings. Grads gathered Friday night for a “throwback dinner” in the Cafe, followed by a Mustang victory in the Homecoming football game at which they were treated to free admission and concessions. During the game, this year’s MVC Hall of Fame inductee - Don Price - was honored. Saturday brought many back for the Alumni & Friends Family Picnic, including campus tours with Head of School Dr. Salerno, and a prayer service for the Don Price Performing Arts Chapel that took place adjacent to the construction site in MVC’s newly opened Outdoor Student Center.

Enjoy the pictures below and visit our Alumni page to see others. Watch future issues of the Messenger for another round of great shots courtesy of Ray Houlihan ‘50!

Another Homecoming 2018 highlight was the introduction of the Mustang Ring of Honor. This new form of Mustang acknowledgment is designed to celebrate former athletes, coaches, and other major athletic program contributors. Members will be inducted into the Mustang Ring of Honor each year during our Homecoming football game. Visit our website to read a more in-depth description of the criteria and nominate an honoree today.


We’ve had an unusually lively fall semester at MVC as heavy equipment rolled into action at the future site of the Don Price Performing Arts Chapel. Photos of the project’s current status are available on MVC’s website, along with images from the groundbreaking ceremonies held earlier this fall. We are on track to open the facility for the 2020-2021 school year and our students could not be more eager with anticipation.

Alumni Spotlight

Though he began attending Monte Vista Christian in 7th grade, Rudy Lopez ‘02 and his family moved to the Spanish-looking stucco home at the top of the hill across Wheelock Road during his freshman year. The next four years would be eventful, both on and off the basketball court, and to this day, returning to the old neighborhood brings back good memories that had a huge impact on Rudy’s future.

After winning the CCS championship during his junior year, Rudy’s senior year MVC varsity basketball team went on to win a second-consecutive CCS championship, an SCCAL league championship, and end as the NorCal runner-up - one game away from the state championships. He recalls the local media at the MVC gym more days than not that year. Rudy was named League MVP, but he remembers his receipt of the Jeremiah Award for humility, chosen by his classmates, as just as meaningful and important.

As with most championship teams, the secret behind that MVC team’s success was relationships. Varsity Coach Steve Miles, JV/Freshman Coach Willie Bobo, and Assistant Coach Dave Stengl (pictured above) provided the kind of leadership that won games and built teamwork among young men. The bonds were so strong, in fact, that in 2014, when Steve decided to come out of retirement to coach at MVC again, both Dave and Rudy joined him as assistant coaches. These friendships remain strong to this day.

After MVC, Rudy went on to play basketball first at Hartnell College and then on a full scholarship at Fresno Pacific University, where he completed a B.A. in business administration. From there he was off to Mexico to play professionally for a year, and returned to accept a position with the Watsonville Police Department where he continues to serve.

Today Rudy lives in Hollister with his wife of nine years and their two children, Rudy Jr. and Olivia (pictured below). Apart from ongoing play in a local league, Rudy has competed in the Police Olympics the last two years with his MVC teammate Michael White ‘03. This past year they lost to the LAPD in the finals and took home silver medals (pictured below). They are a long way away from their days on the court in what is now MVC’s Theater, but the lessons and relationships forged here play a key role in those accomplishments just as they did in those of their Mustang days.

Mustang Notes

Twenty-four years of service to MVC was celebrated along with many other accomplishments and milestones when Dale Lebeck’s children hosted a surprise 80th birthday party for him at The Crow’s Nest in Santa Cruz. Dale filled many roles at MVC from 1964 until 1988, including but not limited to business manager, athletic director, and principal. What a privilege for MVC to thank him publicly for his contributions.

MVC’s Class of 1998 enjoyed a wonderful 20-year reunion during Homecoming 2018 thanks to the hard work of coordinator Gretchen (Dawid ‘98) Cortes. Over 40 people gathered at Corralitos Brewing Co., owned by Luke Taylor ‘98. In addition to classmates and their guests, beloved teachers including Sheldon and Gaytha Parkinson and Paul and Glenda Lyons joined in the reminiscing and the fun.

Chris Chandler '11 (left) and Will Cook '11 (right) just wrapped filming and producing MVC's latest commercial that is airing in select Gilroy, Morgan Hill, Salinas, and Watsonville movie theaters.

Ariana Locsin '17 feels like she has grown so much since she graduated. Following graduation, she attended De Anza Community College in Cupertino, CA majoring in psychology. Upon completing her freshman year, she decided to take a gap year to do a DTS (Discipleship Training School) at YWAM Kona (Youth with a Mission), where she is currently enrolled in the Fire & Fragrance program. She will be spending three months on campus and three months on outreach in Paraguay.

Ari is thankful to have attended Monte Vista Christian where she made lifelong friends who continue to encourage and inspire her to work toward things that are bigger than herself. She is thankful to have had teachers who proved good examples of what it is like to lead a Christian life and have a relationship with God. After her gap year, Ari plans to return to college. In her words, "My plan might not be God’s plan so I am keeping an open mind to be called to a different path, always keeping Jesus at the focal point."

Rachel Vanni '17 is four weeks into being a student at YWAM (Youth with a Mission). She is hungry to learn more about the Lord and see the Great Commission fulfilled. Rachel is scheduled to leave in December for the Philippines. Reflecting on her experience so far, Rachel says, "The Lord is doing great things, especially during our local outreach. We’ve been reaching so many people and families and it’s been such a blessing to get connected with the neighborhood. We are more expectant than ever and cannot wait for how the Lord moves in the next couple of months!"

In Memoriam

Sylvia L. (Turner) Woodgates died October 6, 2018 in Chapel Hill, NC, two days before her 103rd birthday. She was a music instructor at MVC from 1937-1941. Her mother, Lucena Eddings Turner, was Dean of Students. Sylvia traveled with The Sharon Singers and is still remembered for leading a famous boy's a cappella quartet which sang in Watsonville churches. Martha Price wrote to Sylvia on her 100th birthday: "I have very loving thoughts of you when I came to Monte Vista. I was only 14 and feeling very awkward. You made me feel welcome. I loved you from the first day. The time you spent here was the solid foundation on which MVC was founded. You invested lots of yourself here." A complete obituary and other remembrances can be seen at Hall Wynne.

Samuel Nicholas Ford '08 passed away on July 16, 2018 in Scottsdale, AZ from a seizure that took him instantly into the Lord's presence. Samuel played baseball at MVC and developed into a fine pitcher and power hitter. After college he worked in the restaurant industry in both California and Arizona. Friends and colleagues remember Samuel for his dedication, dependability, and faithful commitment as a fan of the San Francisco Giants.

In Memoriam

Sylvia L. (Turner) Woodgates died October 6, 2018 in Chapel Hill, NC, two days before her 103rd birthday. She was a music instructor at MVC from 1937-1941. Her mother, Lucena Eddings Turner, was Dean of Students. Sylvia traveled with The Sharon Singers and is still remembered for leading a famous boy's a cappella quartet which sang in Watsonville churches. Martha Price wrote to Sylvia on her 100th birthday: "I have very loving thoughts of you when I came to Monte Vista. I was only 14 and feeling very awkward. You made me feel welcome. I loved you from the first day. The time you spent here was the solid foundation on which MVC was founded. You invested lots of yourself here." A complete obituary and other remembrances can be seen at Hall Wynne.

Samuel Nicholas Ford '08 passed away on July 16, 2018 in Scottsdale, AZ from a seizure that took him instantly into the Lord's presence. Samuel played baseball at MVC and developed into a fine pitcher and power hitter. After college he worked in the restaurant industry in both California and Arizona. Friends and colleagues remember Samuel for his dedication, dependability, and faithful commitment as a fan of the San Francisco Giants.

MVC is Grateful

Please join us in expressing gratitude to the following members of our MVC family who have given to support athletics via the Mustang Club and fine arts via the Studio MVC Club:

Erin & Jeff Allshouse
The Family of Marisa Angulo
Beske Family
Bob & Company
Bob's G-Ma and Paka
Colaprete Family
Cortes Family
Cutrignelli Famiglia
Ryan & Nikki Daniels
Dinsmore Family
Kip & Shannon Erb
Finn Clan
Gene & Karen Fisher
Tyson & Cindy Gerhold
Don & Kerry Harvey
Hendrickson Family
Leal Family
Lebovitz Family
Lee Family
Jeff & Anita Lopez
The Family of Courtney Miller
Jason & Paige Moore
Padilla Chavez Family (Emi '19 & Maya '21)
Pashby Family
Toby & Jody Price (Price Ag Consulting)
Tate & Shannon Rafat
The Family of JR Ramirez
Rand Family
Renggli Family
Susan & Carlos Rivera
The Family of Isaiah Rocha
Salerno Family
Sawyer Family
Snyder Family/Robert & Catherine
The Family of Matty Solis
Spohn Family
Thrasher Family
The Family of Madison Turner

If you would like to make a gift to support MVC this Christmas season - athletics, fine arts, or general operations - donate online or mail your gift (made out to Monte Vista Christian School with designation in the memo line) to:

Monte Vista Christian School
Attn: Advancement Department
2 School Way
Watsonville, CA 95076

Questions about giving to support MVC can be directed or 831-768-6111.

Merry Christmas

Celebrate the season by joining us for an upcoming Christmas performance at MVC.

On behalf of Monte Vista Christian School, we wish you and yours a blessed Christmas season celebrating the miraculous gift of our Savior, Jesus Christ.


Homecoming 2018

Homecoming is one month away!

Sign up now for any - or all! - of the weekend's exciting events.

*Indicates events that require advance reservations.

Friday, October 5

*5 pm ~ ResLife Alumni Throwback Dinner

Former dorm residents are invited to take a "walk down memory lane" and enjoy dinner in the Cafe with current ResLife students and staff.

5-8 pm ~ Alumni Welcome Tent (Mustang Stadium)

Stop by to pick up your free pass for the Homecoming games (JV @ 5 pm, parade @ 6:30 pm, and Varsity @ 7:30 pm) as well as a complimentary burger/chips/drink at the concessions stand. Don't miss halftime of the varsity game when alumni will be officially welcomed home!

Saturday, October 6
*9 am ~ Alumni & Friends Campus Fun Run
Enjoy the beauty of MVC's 105-acre campus by participating in a two-mile run (or walk!). There will be prizes for each class era and a lap-the-track kids race, as well.

*11 am ~ Alumni & Friends Family Picnic
Mustangs of all ages are invited to this all-campus extravaganza featuring a casual lunch, sand volleyball, lawn games, and fun activities for little ones. Our Head of School, Dr. Salerno, will lead campus tours throughout the day. Join Kent and Marsha (Dunlap) Tarr, Dale and Leah (Price) Lebeck, and many other familiar faces for a special day of reconnecting.
~ Classes of 1968-1977 will be gathering in the Sailer House and invite their classmates to join them.

1 pm ~ Hall of Fame Induction & Prayer Service for the Don Price Performing Arts Chapel

Gather at the construction site for MVC's new Don Price Performing Arts Chapel for the official induction of Don Price into the MVC Hall of Fame. We will also celebrate this milestone and tremendous addition to our campus by praising God and asking for His protection and blessing on this project.

Evening ~ Class/Era Reunions:
The following class eras are planning their get-togethers on Saturday-night:

Classes of 1968-1977 ~ Contact Beverly (Salazar '73) Hance

*Class of 1988 ~ Dinner at the California Grill; contact Kendra Lanham at MVC

*Class of 1998 ~ Corralitos Brewing Company (4-8 pm): Click here to register!

Class of 2008 ~ Contact Steve Sandoval '08

If your class is celebrating a 5- or 10-year reunion and it's not listed here, contact Nikki Daniels to get the ball rolling and plan a get-together!

Alumni Spotlight

Alumni Spotlight
Mikayla Gibson ‘07

Growing up in Gilroy, Mikayla was active in community theater from an early age. It wasn’t until her high school years began at MVC, though, that her passion started to truly take root. She was cast as Little Red Riding Hood in her freshman year production of Into the Woods and the rest, as they say, is history. Her drama classes with both Jason Hedden and Peter Weisenburger, combined with future productions including Little Shop of Horrors and Guys & Dolls, were highlights of her high school years.

After MVC graduation in 2007, Mikayla enrolled at Chapman University and eventually transferred to the American Musical and Dramatic Academy (AMDA) in Los Angeles. She earned her bachelor’s degree in fine arts (BFA) in 2011 and was off and running. Her career thus far has included a role in MTV’s Awkward, roles in feature films Betrothed and Moments of Clarity(alongside stars Erik Roberts and Lyndsy Fonseca), and, most recently, CBS’The Young and the Restless.

In between roles, Mikayla stays busy taking classes and continually honing her skills. She points to good friends - including numerous MVC classmates, who she keeps in touch with across the miles - and maintaining a balanced life as key to her ability to stay focused on her goals. Her encouragement for others is clear - “If you stick with it, it’s worth it.”

Alumni Spotlight
Ty Widell '11

When people ask him what he does for a living, Ty Widell '11 can honestly say he builds spaceships.

He could also say that he’s an avionics engineer for The Spaceship Company, a subsidiary of Virgin Galactic, where his primary role is to code the Multi-Function Displays (MFDs) in both the White Knight 2 (WK2) and Spaceship 2 (SS2). The components that Ty codes include various 3D displays and maps that are crucial to the safety of these vehicles and the future path of recreational space travel.

Ty caught his vision for engineering during his time at MVC, building his first computer at age 16 and choosing Purdue University as his next step. He points to his involvement with Purdue Solar Racing (PSR), however, as the key turning point that “launched” him on his current path. Ty was elected VP of Engineering at PSR after assisting to build an entire solar car from scratch. He soon benefited from a mentorship by a Purdue graduate and employee of Virgin Galactic, which led to an internship and, ultimately, his current role at The Spaceship Company, based in California’s Mohave Desert.

When he looks back on his time at MVC, Ty points to the relationships - specifically those with his teachers - as the influences that shaped him most. He recalls Laramie Holtzclaw’s wit and honesty that propelled his students forward toward achievement, as well as Kent Tarr’s ability to convey lessons and key math principles with clarity. Influences like these shaped the journey that led to Ty’s current life and role, and in the case of his future in particular, it can truly be said that the sky is NOT the limit.

Click here to see a video of one of Ty's recent powered flights. WK2 is the big carrier plane with two fuselages and SS2 is the one that drops.

Mustang Notes

Andrew Hubbard '06, and Olivia Cannizzaro '06 are excited to announce their engagement and upcoming wedding on August 11 of this year. Congratulations, Andrew and Olivia!

Ray Houlihan '50 earned two gold medals in cycling during this year’s Bay Area Senior Games. Racing in the 85-90 age group, 86-year-old Ray rode in both the 5K and 10K events where he finished his 10K in1:05:33. Ray began his cycling career in 1948 as a student at Monte Vista with his mentor, Jim Price, son of MVC founder R.O. Price.

Click here to read more about Ray and his passion for cycling.

Joshua Kristianto '09 is the newest dayside on-air reporter for the Central Coast’s KION Newschannel 5/46. He studied broadcast journalism at Biola University, graduating in the Fall of 2014, and became a reporter for NBC Montana in Bozeman. After a brief stint as a news producer in San Diego, Joshua moved home to the Central Coast to continue his journey as a television journalist and considers it a privilege to report the news for his hometown.

Click here to see Joshua cover an amazing story about the recent missing Oregon woman who survived a crash down a cliff along Highway 1 and was found days later by a couple of hikers.

Dr. Lorrel (Brown ‘99) Toft is a trained cardiologist and an advocate of CPR education. She is currently creating an interactive film to teach high schoolers CPR. The premise of the film is to increase retention by constructing an emotionally charged scene where students observe their peers aiding their coach who has just gone into cardiac arrest. Dr. Lorrel’s ultimate hope with her film is to raise the percentage of cardiac arrest victims receiving CPR.

Click here to see the making of Dr. Lorrel’s film.

In Memoriam

John Kennedy '63 went to be with the Lord on Tuesday, June 19, 2018, at the age of 74 in Clovis, CA. John was born in Sierra Leone, West Africa, to missionary parents. He served in the United States Navy and was an ordained minister who loved the Lord Jesus and shared his faith with all. He leaves behind his wife of nearly 53 years, three children and their spouses, and multiple grandchildren.


Martha Price 1926-2018

Mary Martha Price Eulogy 05/11/2018

(Mary) Martha Price was born November 10, 1926 in Cottonwood, Arizona to Christian and Mabel Sailer. She attended first through eighth grade in Clemenceau, Arizona. During her early years she enjoyed working on the Sailer chicken ranch. The family was active in their church and worked to reach their community with the Gospel.

Martha’s parents wanted their children to attend a Christian school. They learned of Monte Vista Christian School from a visiting minister. With God’s leading, her brother, John Sailer, attended Monte Vista first, while Martha followed him two years later as a freshman at the age of 13. In 1944, Martha graduated from Monte Vista Christian as the valedictorian of her class. Both Martha and her brother John, remained at Monte Vista their entire lives, where they were pivotal in establishing the solid Christian foundation that exists today.

It wasn’t long until Don Price noticed this quiet, beautiful, senior class student who would become his wife of 55 years. Martha knew God was calling her to serve alongside her husband. Don and Martha married in December 1944, beginning their leadership role at Monte Vista Christian School where they touched lives for over 78 years.

During her years at Monte Vista, Martha served in many capacities while completing her degree at San Jose State University. Martha was loved by the faculty and student body as a teacher, an administrator and a faithful prayer warrior. She and Don also became “Mom and Dad” to many students and influenced them with Godly character and standards. Through humility and faithfulness, Martha’s (and Don’s) goal was to reach others for Christ. Together they never lost sight of their purpose.

Don Price preceded her in death in 1999. Martha leaves behind 2 children Rob Price and Leah Lebeck and (Dale Lebeck), 5 grandchildren and 11 great grandchildren. Over the years her children and grandchildren grew up at Monte Vista, while her great grandchildren have enjoyed playing at her house creating special memories. Martha’s family was her ultimate joy and pride. Now that she is home with her Heavenly Father, Martha’s Godly legacy will continue to live on through her family, friends and the many lives she touched.

Homecoming 2018

Vote Now to Help Us Plan!
Homecoming is coming up on Friday-Saturday, October 5-6, 2018, and MVC is looking forward to hosting our alumni for a weekend of reconnection and fun… but we need your input to plan it!

A fun run on Saturday morning? A golf outing? A family picnic with kid-friendly activities? Click here to let us know what you would (or would not) sign up to do when you come home this October, and then watch the July issue of the Messenger for the results and a full schedule ready for sign-ups.

If you would like to help plan a reunion for your class and/or other classes, contact Nikki Daniels today for more information.

Outdoor Student Center Update

Outdoor Student Center:
Phase I Installation Complete!

We did it! Or more appropriately, YOU did it! MVC’s supporters - alumni, parents, faculty/staff, Board members - came together and donated nearly $60,000 toward the Outdoor Student Center project. This means that Phase I of the project - the first five umbrellas and seating nooks that cover the upper-most level of the amphitheatre - are in place and already in use!

Our goal is to raise $40,000 more to reach our $100,000 goal - allowing Phase II (four more umbrellas/nooks to fill the rest of the amphitheatre) to be in place in time to kick-off the 2018-2019 school year.

Current MVC faculty members are combining their gifts to reach the $1000 threshold for naming tributes in memory of beloved former MVC teachers Isomi Doyal and Amy McRae. To make a gift toward either of these memorials or a different in honor of/in memory of dedication, click here.

Questions? Contact Nikki Daniels

Alumni Spotlight

Alumni Spotlight
Jordan De Los Santos '12

Current MVC Digital Art teacher Jordan De Los Santos ‘12 likes a challenge. “Don’t ever tell me I can’t do something, because that just means I’ll figure out a way to prove you wrong.” He can look back and see that mindset taking shape in his high school years, during which he would no sooner finish challenging courses than sign up for the next year’s even more difficult version. The challenges kept coming after that, and Jordan’s can-do attitude continued to serve him well. His MVC college preparation equipped him to blaze new ground for his family as a first-generation college student. Read more.

Mustang Notes

Mustang Notes

Giuseppe Steigman ‘17 is a finalist in the Carmel Bach Festival Young Artists' Competition. Recognizing talented young musicians from California’s Central Coast, this showcase presents accomplished young soloists, pianists, instrumentalists, vocalists, and chamber ensembles. Young artists chosen to perform during the Festival were selected from a competitive audition held in March. Giuseppe and his fellow winners have been invited to perform in a special Young Artists showcase concert on Saturday, July 21 at 2:30 pm on the main stage of the Sunset Center in Carmel-by-the-Sea.

Norman Root ‘68 and his wife just celebrated 40 years of marriage with a cruise. In Norm’s words, “MVC started it all.” Congratulations, Norm and Kathy!

Beth Kirchner ‘05 has been teaching kindergarten for the past seven years. She spent last year teaching aboard a hospital ship off the coast of West Africa with Mercy Ships. Her pupils were the children of the onboard crew - four students from four different continents! She returned to the U.S. this year to live near family in Houston, Texas, and will return to the ship this summer to teach for the next two years in Guinea and Senegal.

Kate (Kirchner ‘05) White graduated from Pepperdine University and then spent six years working with kids both on the Disney Cruise Line and then in the fifth grade classroom. In 2015, she married her "favorite guy in the world" and moved to Texas, where her husband works as an ER physician and she spends her days chasing Charles (age 1) and growing Baby #2 (due in August). Kate shares, "MVC was an awesome season of my life. One thing I especially appreciate to this day is the incredible vocal training I received from Dr. Dehner. He instilled a huge love for music that I'm still expanding today as I compete with a Sweet Adeline chorus that is in the top 10 in the world! Go Mustangs!"

Timothy Urban ‘90 recently celebrated 20 years of marriage and promotion to Captain in the U.S. Navy. After two decades in naval aviation, Tim, his wife, and their two sons are settled in Newport, RI where Tim teaches at the U.S. Naval War College. He expects to complete a Ph.D. in International Relations at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy in Boston next year. Tim thanks MVC for a well-rounded high school education that was foundational to his career. Tim shares, “The Lord has been faithful to provide for us and sustain us through many challenging Navy deployments and other assignments. We are blessed by His providence.”

In Memoriam

Robert Templin ‘68 passed away on February 2, 2018 at his home in Wickenburg, AZ after a battle with prostate cancer. Following his time at MVC during which time he was a soccer and baseball player, he worked for Woolworth Stores until they closed in the late 1980s. He lived and worked in Hawaii for many years before he and his wife Betty relocated to Arizona in 2014. A patriotic American and committed Denver Broncos fan, Bob is survived by Betty and his son Jeff (Kristina) Templin of Morgan Hill, CA. Bob’s classmate Norm Root ‘68 fondly remembers, “Bob and I both worked in the dairy and, of course, our job was to milk the cows. As we had to be finished by breakfast we started very early and, as the sun would come up, we would serenade the girls dorm with the sound of music. I don't think they ever heard us - at least I hope not!”

Robert Stotts ‘52 passed away on February 1, 2018 in Orange, CA from complications due to heart failure and stroke. After his senior year at MVC, Robert enlisted in the U.S. Army and then attended college. He served as a builder and business owner in Orange County, CA for more than 50 years. In the mid-1980s, Robert found his life's work in the management and expansion of skilled nursing facility, Hacienda Rehabilitation and Health Care Center in Hanford, CA, which continues his legacy of creating a community of care to nourish and heal. He was a dedicated Christian and steadfast supporter of the evangelical Christian church at every stage of his life.

The Stotts name is best known to current MVC students as one of the two surnames honored by the Stotts-Hellmann Hall title of our girls’ dormitory - a facility that Robert and his family supported generously. Current students also benefit annually from the Reneé L. Stotts Memorial Scholarship Fund, named in honor of Robert’s daughter who preceded him in death. Robert is survived by his wife Donna Faye Stotts, daughter Rhonda Kaye Moore (Rex Moore), son Matthew Lee Stotts (Carol Sacks), and grandchildren Gus, Grant, Amanda, Clyde, and Claire.


Homecoming 2018

Come On Back!
ALL alumni of all years are invited to come back for Homecoming 2018. Watch future Messenger newsletters for details about a Friday night all-alumni event and some Saturday opportunities as well!

Calling all MVC alumni, especially Classes of:
2013 - 5-Year Reunion
2008 - 10-Year Reunion
2003 - 15-Year Reunion
1998 - 20-Year Reunion
1993 - 25-Year Reunion
1988 - 30-Year Reunion
1983 - 35-Year Reunion
1978 - 40-Year Reunion
1973 - 45-Year Reunion
1968 - 50-Year Reunion
1963 - 55-Year Reunion
1958 - 60-Year Reunion

If you would like to participate in a class reunion for the years listed above, contact Nikki Daniels today for more information.

Outdoor Student Center

By day, a dynamic:

  • Classroom with flexible seating for collaboration or independent work
  • Outdoor cafe for teachers and students to share a meal or conversation
  • Chapel venue for God’s praise to sound beautifully across campus

By night, a well-equipped:

  • Playhouse for concerts or plays with ambient lighting and premium sound
  • Cinema for gathering as a community for fun family movie nights
  • Space for community celebrations

Each member of the MVC school family - current parents and alumni alike - is invited to give a gift to literally “set the stage” of our current amphitheater space to become the functional heart of our campus.

The size and scope of the project will be determined based on gifts received on or before January 30, 2018. Our hope is to have installation finished during spring in order to hold a dedicatory celebration during Commencement Weekend 2018.

Gifts of $1000 or more are eligible to be recognized within the Outdoor Student Center. Naming can be customized to be “in honor of” or “in memory of” a loved one.

Questions? Contact Nikki Daniels.

Getting and Staying Connected

We eagerly anticipate reaching each and every MVC graduate with the Messenger. Please forward this Messenger to any and all classmates that might not have received it and ask them to send their email address to That way, we can send them the next one!

Share With Our Students

Come Share Your Professional Expertise With Our Students!

MVC’s College and Career Exploration class is looking for alumni in various professions to come to campus to share about their work and educational background, as well as current workplace experience. If you are interested in helping out and could come to campus for 30-40 minutes in the 8:45-10:05 am window on a Friday this semester (January through May), please contact Guidance Counselor Scott Nystrom.

Alumni Story

And To Think It All Began…
Yukari (Yamada ‘07) Kurino’s Story

Growing up in Japan, the thought of studying abroad never really occurred to Yukari Yamada. In fact, it wasn’t until her older sister spent a few weeks in Australia during a winter break that it dawned on Yukari that she could also venture away from friends and family to experience another culture.

By the time Yukari’s “non-negotiable” was factored in – an affordable, year-long program at a private California school – Monte Vista Christian was her obvious choice. As she recalls it, she came “in spite of the Christian part.”

In the midst of her difficult first year – fraught with loneliness, language struggles, and low self-esteem – Yukari met ESL substitute teacher Tracy Brumme. The very first day they met, Yukari asked Tracy if she could live with her, and somewhat surprisingly, Tracy said she would pray about it.

Before she knew it, Yukari moved into the Brumme home and life began to change. The very first night at dinner, when her host brother T.J. prayed and thanked God for bringing Yukari into their home, it moved Yukari deeply. She recalls, “I had never met anyone like [the Brummes]. They cared so much about me and they didn’t even know me. Church attendance on Sundays was a given, but I didn’t mind because I loved just being with them.”

Over time the Brummes shared “God stories” and asked Yukari questions that she “kind of hated,” but that got her thinking… When Tracy shared her testimony of growing up in a Christian home yet feeling empty in her heart, Yukari knew exactly how she felt. As she heard Tracy share how faith in Christ had filled those holes, Yukari “slowly started to believe that Jesus was what I needed, too. And as I stepped out in faith, God met me literally each step of the way.”

When Yukari reflects on who she was when she arrived at Monte Vista and who she became, she recognizes that she was transformed. “I used to hate myself, especially how tall I was as a Japanese girl, and I used to constantly compare myself to others. In hindsight I see that I left Japan mainly because I thought maybe people in the US were taller and I would feel normal here, but God used my insecurity to draw me to Him, even before I knew He existed. I see His hand so clearly. Once I accepted Jesus, I was able to love myself through Him.”

Yukari lived with the Brummes throughout high school and graduated from Monte Vista in 2007. As she wrestled with whether to return to Japan or attend college in the States, God used the Scripture exhorting us to “love not the world” to show her that staying and growing closer to Him was far more important than the material reasons drawing her home. She went on to Pepperdine University to earn a degree in accounting and was recruited by a firm in Los Angeles where she went to work and eventually met her husband.

Today Yukari is a happily married mother to one-year-old Elisa and juggled naptime in order to reconnect with her alma mater and share her Monte Vista story.

We praise God that though a decade has passed since Yukari walked the MVC campus, our school community is still full of Yukaris and Brumme families… students being empowered to achieve their highest potential, and faithful servants being used by God to provide Christ-centered educational excellence that changes lives.

MVC Reflections

Dr. Mike Kirchner - MVC biology teacher from 2000-2006 who has now returned to that role as a “new” teacher this year - recently reached out to his former students with the following question:

Can you think of an example of a teacher from your time at MVC who said or did something that had a significant influence on your life?

The voices that follow represent a sampling of the responses he received… each a great reminder of the loving relationships and supportive community that characterize MVC - in the past as well as today.

I had a teacher that would get so enthusiastic about a subject that most would write off as boring. I am talking about the kind of enthusiasm that would make you laugh and wonder if they knew how silly they looked. Of course they did, but they loved their calling and gave it everything they had. This made me want to learn. I had teachers that challenged me to look at everything through God's eyes. To see that he cared about each aspect of who we were and pushed me to know Him and who He called me to be. This made me know that I was wanted. I had teachers that would labor over explaining a concept to me over and over again and push me to go beyond what I thought I could do. This made me know that I was capable. MVCS shaped the mother, wife and woman I am today.
~ Sarah (Van Gundy ‘03) Singleton

The most positive influence I received was from Coach Zo. He always made time to talk about God and be close with God/pray. I believe the biggest reason he had that influence on me was because of the positive relationship I was able to have with him from a personal standpoint. So when he did talk about God, it would make a bigger impact on me. It’s helped me in my life today with the struggles I have been faced with. I feel I have a very strong walk with God and I feel he had a big part in it. I did have an awesome Mom to lead me in the right direction at a very young age too. But to this day, I will still look to him for Godly advice. I believe it’s not about just talking about God that will influence students. It’s having a positive relationship with the students on a personal level.
~ Aaron Glaum ‘05