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Duane Eddy, the most successful and influential instrumentalist in Rock and Roll history, is the man who added a new term to the American music dictionary-Twang. The sound he created was easily identifiable and uniquely his own. Strong, dramatic, single-note melodies, the bending of the low strings, and a combination of echo, vibrato, and tremolo, produced a signature sound that was unlike anything heard yet, a sound that would be featured on an unprecedented string of thirty-four chart singles and sales of over 100 million worldwide.
In the early days of Rock and Roll, the notion of the lead guitarist as the charismatic figure in the spotlight was completely novel. Duane Eddy moved the guitar player front and center. Quiet and unassuming offstage, he cut an indelible figure with an electric guitar in his hands. It was a classic pose that defined the cool iconography of what it means to be a Rock and Roller.
Born in Corning, New York, in 1938, he began playing at age five, emulating his cowboy hero, Gene Autry. The family moved west to Arizona, in the early fifties, where Duane met his longtime partner, co-writer, and producer, Lee Hazlewood. Together, they created a successful formula based upon Duane’s unique approach to his instrument, and Lee’s experimental vision in the recording studio, and have been referred to as “one of the greatest hit-making machines of the Rock and Roll era.” His first album, Have Twangy Guitar Will Travel, contained six hit singles and remained on the charts for an astounding 82 weeks.
Elements of country, blues, jazz, and gospel-infused his instrumentals. They had evocative titles like Rebel Rouser, Forty Miles of Bad Road, Cannonball, The Lonely One, Shazam, and Some Kinda Earthquake. They were filled with rebel yells and brilliant sax breaks. The worldwide popularity of these records, beginning with Moovin and Groovin in 1958, broke open the doors for Rock and Roll instrumental music. His band, The Rebels, featured musicians who were to become some of the world’s best-known session players. Sax players Steve Douglas and Jim Horn, pianist Larry Knechtel, and guitarist Al Casey have been heard on hundreds of hit records, becoming members of the famous “Wrecking Crew” in the sixties, and touring with a very elite group of artists through the years.
The following decade was a blur of touring and recording, with an astonishing amount of work being released. Duane constantly broke new ground, producing over 25 albums spanning a broad range of themes. At the height of the Rock and roll era, he recorded an album of completely acoustic folk music, Songs of Our Heritage, the first “unplugged” project, so to speak. There were orchestral albums, Big Band sounds of the Forties, and an album of songs written by Bob Dylan, who, years later, would write, “For sure my lyrics had struck nerves that had never been struck before, but if my sons were just about words then what was Duane Eddy, the great rock and roll guitarist, doing recording an album full of instrumental melodies of my songs?”
The seventies were equally busy for Duane. He produced album projects for Phil Everly and Waylon Jennings. A collaboration with hit songwriter Tony Macaulay led to a worldwide top ten record, Play Me Like you Play Your Guitar. The single, You Are My Sunshine, featuring Willie Nelson and Waylon Jennings, hit the country charts in 1977.
An amazing group of legendary players hit the road in early 1983, showing up at small, intimate clubs. Friends of Duane’s, some old, some new, had put his band together wanting to give the fans a chance to hear him in a unique setting-Don Randi on keyboards, Hal Blaine, on drums, Steve Douglas on sax, and Ry Cooder, on guitar. Needless to say, this group rocked, and the lines around the blocks and the superb reviews said it all. Duane Eddy was back, and a whole new generation of fans was listening.
In 1986, Duane recorded with the British avant-garde group Art of Noise; a collaboration that brought a new twist to his 1960 bestseller, Peter Gunn won The Grammy for Best Rock Instrumental of 1986.
The following year, a new album, the self-titled Duane Eddy, was released on Capitol. As a tribute to his influence and inspiration, a number of amazing artists came along to be a part of this project. Tracks were produced by Paul McCartney, Jeff Lynne, Ry Cooder, Art of Noise, and Duane. The “band” included John Fogerty, George Harrison, Paul McCartney, Ry Cooder, James Burton, David Lindley, Steve Cropper, and original Rebels, Larry Knechtel, and Jim Horn.
In the spring of 1994, Duane Eddy’s place in our musical history was etched in store at his induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of fame, alongside fellow artists Elton John, Rod Steward, John Lennon, Bob Marley, and The Grateful Dead. Later that year, film soundtracks introduced Duane Eddy’s music to millions as they watched Forrest Gump being chased by a pickup truck full of rednecks, running into his football career to the sound of Rebel Rouser. Oliver Stone’s Natural Born Killers used The Trembler, a track written by Duane and Ravi Shankar, to help create a spine-chilling scene set against a violent thunderstorm in the desert.
In 1196, Duane was asked by Academy Award-winning composer Hans Zimmer to work with him on the soundtrack of the film Broken Arrow, starring John Travolta. Duane’s unique guitar sound was the first choice to be the “voice” for the villain’s theme. To quote Mr. Zimmer, “I always thought that Duane’s style was being ripped off by the spaghetti westerns. This time I got the real thing.” The appeal of this theme, a dark moody piece, caused it to be used, once again, in an altogether different kind of film-director Wes Craven’s Scream 2.
Duane was the first rock and roll guitarist to have his own signature model guitar. In 1962, the Guild DE-500 was released. In 1997, Gretsch Guitars began production on the Duane Eddy Signature model DE-6120. 2004 began on a high note with the introduction of the Gibson Duane Eddy Signature Model guitar, built to Duane’s specifications by the Gibson Custom Shop. Later that year, he was presented with the Guitar Player Magazine Legend Award, having the distinction of being only the second recipient, the first having been presented to Duane’s own guitar hero, Les Paul. In 2010 Duane renewed his relationship with Gretsch Guitars and they began manufacturing an identical copy of his original hit-making 1957 6120, which is truly an amazing guitar.
In June 2008, Duane was invited to appear at the Gala Opening Night to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Rock and Roll at the Hollywood Bowl. In 1958, Duane was the first Rock and Roll artist to step out onto the stage. In his introduction, Rainn Wilson said, “Tonight, he returns, to perform Rebel Rouser, the song that shook the place fifty years ago. A groundbreaker who paved the way for so many great rockers to give The Hollywood Bowl a whole new spin.”
Bill Flores was born in Peak, Arizona on May 10, 1935. He attended Red Rock, Picacho, Eloy, and Coolidge elementary schools. Bill graduated in 1953 from Coolidge High School and attended Durham Business College in Albuquerque, New Mexico. From 1954-1957 Bill was an Army Sgt. (Anti-Aircraft Guided Missile operations & Intelligence).
In 1957 he attended Arizona State University and was a teacher at PHX Boys Club. He continued his education at Northern Arizona University from 1963-1965 and was an elementary teacher at 11 Mile Corner from 1962-1964. In 1964 he was teaching Business law and Ind. Tech) at Coolidge High School due to a recommendation from former English Teacher, Principal Mr. Steck and Superintendent Jim Roth.
Was Coolidge High school teacher of the year in 1965; Chamber of Commerce Coolidge Man of the year in 1966; Assisted Dr. Pence, the first Central Arizona College (CAC) president in planning the future political action necessary for the continued success, and expansion of Central Arizona College.
Bill became an employee of CAC as Dean in 1968; During CAC’s opening year, taught math and industrial tech. In 1970 I continued to assist Dr. Pence with political strategy, working with local, state, and national community groups and legislators. Purchased restaurant from Mr. Rick Santoro; was later developed into a cocktail lounge and now a convenience store (sold in 1996)
In 1973 recall Election, became Coolidge, City Mayor (Book: “The Will of The People”). As Mayor with Council planned the:
In 1974 Bill was, Chairman of the regional council for Gila and Pinal counties; Elected Chairman of the Council for Mayors, County Supervisors, and Tribal Governments; Enrolled, in University of Arizona; Doctoral Program; An officer of the League of Cities and Town. Member of the Governor’s Committee on Family Relations.
From 1968-1985-worked closely with four governors; Was President of nonprofit corporations: AJC Arizona Job College (Casa Grande); (Construction of 300 homes); BHACA Behavioral Health Agency Inc.; Pinal County Self Help Housing Inc.; CAHRA Community Action and Human Resources of Gila and Pinal; MOP State Migrant Opportunity Program; Appointed by Gov. Jack Williams (Chairman State Manpower Board).
1979-1991-Final Assignment before CAC retirement; as executive Dean for the Educational Programs of the eight state prisons in Pinal County
In 1996 sold “The Ruins Village” store
In 1997 was the Census Field Supervisor for the southern half of the state
In 2001 Fieldworker for State Political Redistricting
In 2002 went to Yugoslavia (Croatia, Bosnia, and Sarajevo) and Italy. 2004 returned to Bosnia.
The President of the United States and the Governor of Arizona once invited me to apply for a presidential appointment. I could not accept the application because I felt I could serve my community, state, and my country from Coolidge and still be able to keep my family together. I am truly honored by this recognition. I have been honored many times before today, this honor comes from the public schools, and my experience as a student and as a Coolidge High School teacher-developed my interest in helping people. I have always been available to help in any way possible. My best experience was to devote all of my teaching time to my students. I also owe my success to my parents, wife, and children. To my former English teacher, and Principal Mr. Steck, Superintendent Jim Roth, and teacher Jack Meeker.
I truly believe one person can make a difference.
Jim Garrett was born and raised in Coolidge. Jim graduated from Coolidge High School in 1977, where his mother taught English until 1970. During high school, he played baseball, football, and ran track. He was a member of the Letterman’s Club, yearbook and student government. He made many life-long friends throughout his school years.
After high school, he attended Central Arizona College and then transferred to Arizona State University. Jim graduated from Arizona State University in 1981, with a degree in criminal justice. His time at Arizona State University was his only time away from Coolidge. He returned to Coolidge, where two generations of his family before him owned a General Motors car dealership. His grandfather started the business in the mid-1930s. Jim started working at the family-owned business when he was 14 years old and bought the business in 1998.
Jim is a member of the Coolidge High School baseball boosters, football boosters, scholarship committee, and coach selection committees. He is also on the Coolidge chamber board, Coolidge Lions, sons of the American Legion, and central Arizona College foundation board. Garrett Motors has always been a major donor for many programs around Coolidge. Jim is very involved with Coolidge Youth and Coolidge Schools and believes that involvement is important to help the students be successful.
Thomas Alva “Alvie” Hawkins was born May 1, 1925, to Lee and Zella Hawkins in Olustee, Oklahoma. Alva was called home to the Lord on Monday, July 29, 2013, at the age of 88 surrounded by his wife and children.
Alva was raised and attended school in Weatherford, Oklahoma, and graduated from Weatherford High School in 1947. In 1943, Alva was drafted into the United States Army where he served in the South Pacific for over two years as an Infantryman. After the war ended, he was sent to Japan for eighteen months and put in charge of Battalion Sports. After his honorable service to his country, he returned to Weatherford and married his high school sweetheart Merna Faye True in 1947 and took advantage of the G.I. Bill by attending Southwestern State Teachers College in Weatherford, Oklahoma, and played on the Collegiate Conference Championship Football Team of 1950 and earned a Bachelor’s of education degree in 1951 and a masters of education in 1962.
He taught in Magnum, Oklahoma from 1951-1961 and eventually settled in Coolidge, Arizona in 1961. He taught and coached in Coolidge for over 28 years. He coached back to back football state championships in 1967 and 1968 with a 23 game winning streak and one track state championship in 1967 and 1968 with a selected as the 1967 Class “A” All-star football coach and awarded with Class “A” South Coach of the year honors for the 1968 and 1971 – 72 football seasons. Alva was also awarded the Tucson Conquistadores Team of the Year award in 1969. Alva was an active member in the community with the Lifetime Member, Coolidge-Florence Elks Lodge, Lyons Club, American Legion Post 54, and the local Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) Post 3713.
He is survived by his wife of 66 years, Merna Hawkins; his son, Curtis Hawkins, and wife Lynda Hawkins of Kanab, Utah; his son, Kent Hawkins, and wife Charlene Hawkins of Gilbert, Arizona. His son, Steve Hawkins of Casa Grande, Arizona; his daughter, Dana Hoover, and her husband Terry Hoover of Coolidge, Arizona; his two brothers, Odell Hawkins of Nashville, Tennessee, and Jerry Hawkins of Nashville, Tennessee and Jerry Hawkins of Weatherford, Oklahoma. Alva and Merna have 12 wonderful grandchildren and 35 beautiful great-grandchildren. H was preceded in death by two granddaughters, his parents, brothers, and sisters.
My father, Linard McIntyre came to Coolidge in 1929, and with his father opened and operated a gas station located at Main St and Coolidge Ave. My mother Verda Condit came to Coolidge with her family in the early 1930s. I was born in Coolidge, at the time when doctors came into the homes to deliver babies, so I have the distinction of being born in Coolidge at my parents’ home. My father was a businessman with extensive interest in Coolidge from 1919 until his death. Through his legacy, we continued with an automobile dealership, cotton farming, real estate businesses, property management and ice plant, and a restaurant. I had two sisters and two brothers. My sister Michael Ann McIntyre still lives in the home we moved into when I was 4 years old. My only remaining brother, Robert McIntyre lives in the Mesa area. I started attending the Coolidge Nazarene Church at the age of two. I have participated in many of the church programs, and continue doing so even to this day. I started school at the South School kindergarten and graduated from Coolidge High School. After graduation, I attended and graduated from Pasadena Nazarene Coolidge.
I married Ted Harvey and began my teaching career at Coolidge High. We were so fortunate to have had two delightful daughters, Yvonne and Wendy. I lost Wendy and her husband Tommy Heet when a drunk driver hit their car, leaving an almost two-year-old son, Geoffrey. In the years following, I was a strong advocate and sponsor for the “Students against Driving Drunk” at Coolidge High School.
Yvonne and her husband Chuck Warner live in Queen Creek. They both teach at Higley High School in Queen Creek. They have two children, Meghan and Adam. What a delight it is to be able to enjoy not only my daughter and son-in-law, but the grandchildren, and the six great-grandchildren.
I taught at Coolidge High School over a period of 37 years. This was during the time when we could teach life skills, along with regular “reading, writing and arithmetic”. Besides teaching foods, clothing, and life management I also taught a cooperative education class. For more than ten years I was able to place many students into jobs after school for school credit. I taught and conducted the Teen Age Parenting program for several years. CHS had a preschool on campus which enabled teen parents to attend school without stressing over child care. At one time we had one of the only daycare programs in Coolidge.
I served on the Coolidge City Council for 17 years, 6 of which I served as Mayor. I also served on the Executive Board of the Arizona League of Cities. During my City Council tenure, Arizona Boulevard was reconfigured into a four-lane highway. The current swimming pool at the High School was built and the current Adult Center was built. Another council member and I learned that Scottsdale had built their magnificent adult center with a lot of federal funding, so we said, “why can’t we have a nice Adult Center too’. These are just a few improvements in Coolidge in which I have been able to be involved.
I married Lyle Piggott at the time that he was the editor of the Coolidge Examiner, and I was Mayor. Quite an interesting time we had trying not to overstep the bounds of “conflict of interest”. I then gained two more delightful daughters, Becky Ruiz and Cindy Crowe.
I am actively involved with the church, a sewing group, the American Legion Auxiliary, Daughters of the American Revolution, and Monday Niters.
I am currently serving as President of the American Legion Auxiliary in Coolidge. We have a monthly Spaghetti Dinner in which I am one of the principal food preparers. We serve up to 500 people in the winter months, and more than 100 during the other months. We work closely with the Sons of the American Legion. The money we earn goes to support and improve the infrastructure of the American Legion, the VA Hospital in Tucson, and the Girls State Program. I serve on the committee for the Christmas Gift Shop at the Hospital. Becky Ruiz, Natalie Bagnall, and I have worked the Christmas program which is a four-day commitment at the VA Hospital in Tucson. We provide clothing, toys, and personal items for the Veterans who are in the hospital at that time. We also give a gift to each of their immediate family members. For Girls State, each year I go to four high schools and conduct an orientation to prospective Girls State candidates. Four members of the American Legion and Monday Niters then interview the girls who have filled out applications, and select girls to attend the program in June. Becky Ruiz and I have been the “Girls State Store” managers at Girls State in Tucson for the past 6 years.
I am a participating member of the Daughters of the American Revolution. With Nancy Wofford, I have been able to don Colonial-era costumes and give pocket constitutions to the 5th-grade students, Preambles to the Constitution to 4th graders, and ‘Pledge of Allegiance bookmarks to the 1st graders in Coolidge and Florence’.
I belong to the Monday Niters a club that has partnered with the Auxiliary to provide funding to send a girl to Girls State and provide a yearly scholarship for a graduating senior at Coolidge High School.
I am a member of the Cotton Patchers which is a chapter of the Arizona Quilters Guild. Community projects we have done include making lap quilts for the Coolidge and Florence Police Departments, Coolidge Municipal Court, Tucson VA Hospital, and the Nazarene Children program. We have a quilt show in conjunction with Cotton days in Coolidge. Cotton Days was started when I was serving on the Coolidge City Council and continues to bring people into Coolidge. I purchased a Long Arm Quilter a few years ago, and quilt many of the quilts that are on display.
Lyle and I moved to Valley Farms after retirement so that Lyle could collect and work with old cars. He has his own working garage and I have my “quilting studio”. I really think that it is just a quilting room, but the studio sounds so good. As I said, I’m very active and there are so many things to do that I love.
My years at Coolidge Union High School started in September of 1941. Little did I suspect that he would be elected freshmen class president; as you know, the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941.
I was 15 years old at that time, and it appeared that I might be called into the service before graduating from High School so I was encouraged to take extra classes so as to have enough credits to graduate at midterm. That is exactly what happened and my senior year I had enough credits to graduate at midterm in January of 1944. I reported for duty on February 7, 1944, to the United States Army Air Corps.
Meanwhile back at Coolidge High School, I was elected as class president my sophomore year. I also served as student body president my senior year even though I was gone the 2nd semester.
I played football my freshmen year and we played the Sacaton Indian Reservation team and other teams in the area. During my sophomore year, I only played on the varsity team a few times and did not letter that year.
I made the varsity team my junior year and played left guard i.e. the pulling guard. In those days we played offense as well as a defense because Coolidge High School had so few out for football. I was also elected “King” my junior year and was crowned during the prom. During my senior year, I served as co-captain along with John Martin and we won all eight of our games.
My basketball career ended midterm my sophomore year because Coach Wilson kicked me off the team because I was a little late reporting before a game. The reason I was late was that I had to milk the cows, slop the hogs and feed all the rest of the livestock on the farm. Coach Wilson did not ask me why I was late because someone told him I was driving down Main Street with my girlfriend. The team had won all of its games up until then but never won another game the rest of the season.
I made good grades even though they were not straight A’s. The class I liked the most was vocational Ag because Bob Springfield was such a good teacher. Other subjects I enjoyed were history, biology, and physics.
Coolidge Union High School was very good for me because over those 3 ½ years I learned how to think, how to grow, and how to solve problems. Thanks to the G.I. bill I was able to obtain a college degree from the U of A in 1951 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Agriculture and major in Agricultural Engineering and started my life-long career as a farmer. I operate a farming venture along with sons Greg and David and daughter Carol which involves 3,200 acres of land west of Coolidge. This is a diversified operation devoted to small grains, cotton, alfalfa, seedless watermelons, milo maize, and corn for silage.
I have been instrumental in the development of the River Cooperative Gin and Arizona grain Inc. Have for many years worked in the Farm Credit System and have been actively involved at the local, state, and federal levels on conservation and resource issues involving agriculture. I have pioneered the development of a subsurface drip irrigation system for use on cotton, grains, watermelons, and other desert irrigated crops. This system has allowed for water savings of up to fifty percent while increasing yields and improving the quality of marginal soils. Subsurface drip irrigation has also necessitated the development of special machinery for minimum tillage. In response to these needs, has designed several implements for cotton stalk destruction, drip tubing installation, and tillage operations, five of which have been granted U.S. Patents. The latest U.S. Patent was granted in January of 2008.
I also served on the Coolidge Unified School District Board #21 for nine years. All four of Julie’s and my kids graduated from Coolidge High School. I was able to hand Sarah, Greg, and Carol their diplomas. David graduated the year after I retired from the school board.