Bill and Alice Mensing celebrate 50th

April 11, 2001
Santa Paula News
By George Morgan 50 years. Half a century. It’s a long time to live, let alone be married. Heck, I’m only 47. It’s hard for me to imagine being married for three years longer than my entire life span, yet that’s exactly the bragging rights we celebrated recently for Bill and Alice Mensing.Married in North Hollywood on February 24, 1951, Bill and Alice made their way in January of 1976 to Santa Paula, where Bill had set up shop on the airport making water-drop tanks for helicopters. His company, Sheetcraft, has been a fixture at the airport’s east end ever since.Over a year ago the Mensing kids, Lisa (my wife), Kelly, Mindy, Robert and Barbra, began planning their parents’ 50th anniversary. It was held March 3 at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints and was well attended by friends and family from near and far. Last November Bill had asked my daughter Carley to interview each of his kids and get some input on what life was like growing up in the Mensing household. The assignment proved more daunting than she had expected.At the dinner on March 3 the Mensing clan gathered and enjoyed revisiting tall tales from the “early years.” As dessert was being served, Carley approached the podium and unfolded the talk she had spent months preparing.Speaking of the many pratfalls, bruises and injuries the Mensing kids had muddled through while growing up, she said, “Due to a lack of time I wasn’t able to record all of Kelly’s injuries.”Discussing discipline in the Mensing home, Carley quoted Barbra; “My parents always taught me good manners. They always taught me because I always forgot.” The highlight of this portion of the talk was when Carley reported how Alice one day became so frustrated with Robert leaving the house without permission she tied him to a tree in the front yard.
Carley also discussed how when the Mensing kids were little, their parents took them to a skating rink. At that time Bill wore a beard, but the skating rink had a no-beards dress code and wouldn’t let them in. Carley quipped, “Times have changed, of course. Now they won’t let him go in because he’ll tell stupid jokes.”Then Carley mentioned how she had asked each of the Mensing kids what was their most memorable moment as a family. “They each agreed that the day Mindy was brought home was most memorable.”The evening closed with two songs sung by two of their granddaughters. Kristin sang a solo, “Memories” (from “Cats”). Then she and KatieBrooke combined to sing “When I’m Sixty-Four.”Today Bill and Alice are still running Sheetcraft, along with their son Kelly. Bill is a Boy Scout Commissioner, a participant in community affairs and issues, and is an active member of Kiwanis. Alice is a volunteer at Santa Paula Memorial Hospital, a member of Santa Paula Women of History, and works with Bill in numerous community activities.

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