Richard C. Husbands, Class of 1932

February 09, 2001
Santa Paula High School
By B. J. Harding, President, SPUHS Alumni Association (Biography #123 - Have you submitted yours?)Born in Portland, Oregon, the youngest of the four children of Edgar and Bertha Phillips Husbands, Richard’s siblings were Samuel, Grace and Helen. Dad was a foreman at Limoneira Ranch, and Richard attended grade school at Briggs.At SPUHS, Richard was active in the Glee Club and Operetta, the manager of the junior play, helped with the Junior/Senior Prom, was secretary of Hi-Y, and was the business manager of the 1932 El Solano. During school vacation times, he worked at various jobs so he could save his money for his future education. Richard recalls his favorite teachers being Freeman Eakin, Henry Hill and Ellen Bailard.Richard was a member of Boy Scout Troop #306 headed by Cecil Colling. This troop developed a group called the “Sunshine Puppet Club,” which put on shows at schools and the county fair. This organization was a great opportunity to learn teamwork and responsibility.After graduation Richard was accepted by the University of California at Berkeley, where he earned a B.S. in the College of Agriculture in 1941. While doing graduate work he enlisted in the U.S. Army Medical Corps, where he served four and a half years, mostly in Europe.
At the close of World War II, Richard returned to Berkeley as a graduate student. He was employed as a teaching assistant in Ecology and in Insect Physiology, this being his main focus in college.During World War II, Richard met and married LaRue Heaton of San Fernando and they had four daughters, Peggy, Penny, Kathy and Rebecca. After the birth of their first daughter it was apparent that Richard needed to support his new family, so he accepted a job as an entomologist with a new research program to study mosquito ecology in irrigated fields. This job took him to Turlock and then to Fresno, where he worked for over 20 years. Although this successful program was managed by the California Mosquito Control Association, its management was eventually transferred to the University of California.Richard then decided to work for the Department of Health Services in Sacramento, and retired in 1978 after many years with the State of California. Now retired, Richard lives with his wife of 58 years. He is still active in the California Mosquito Control Association and the Society for Mosquito Ecology, where he served as president in 1977.Richard has always felt that his education at SPUHS was a major factor in his success in life and provided a guiding spirit for others to follow.

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