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Longtime Franklin Elementary School Teacher to Celebrate 100th Birthday

Geraldine Webb at home with her beloved dog, Ladybug.

My mother, former Franklin Elementary School teacher Geraldine Webb, will turn 100 on March 18. Geraldine is the oldest SMMUSD retired teacher. She taught at Franklin Elementary School for 37 years in the same classroom, Room 7. She retired in 1988.

Geraldine still has many friends and former students in the community. Geraldine's two grandchildren are flying in for her big birthday celebration on March 18, along with her daughter-in-law. Geraldine is our family's oldest

living relative and is about to set new records as we approach her 100th birthday.

I am also a retired SMMUSD teacher who taught at Grant Elementary for 28 years. I retired in 2014 to further assist my mom. In addition, my dad, Marvin Webb, served as a teacher, Dean of Boys, and later as assistant principal at John Adams Middle School for 35 years. My dad passed away in 1988 at the age of 68 due to a sudden heart attack, four months before Geraldine retired.

Combined, the three of us have 100 years of service to SMMUSD.

Geraldine came to Santa Monica in 1940 to live with her grandfather on 17th Street after graduating from Kellogg High School in Kellogg, Idaho in 1940.

She met my dad at UCLA, and they settled in our family home, also on 17th Street.

Geraldine Webb sits at the head of her Classroom 7 at Franklin Elementary School in Santa Monica. She taught in that same room for 37 years!

My mom loved working with children. She was a very social, warm, and caring person. While my brother and I were growing up, in her spare time she helped with our church bazaar, liked to take Emeritus classes at Santa Monica College, and to read mysteries, romance, and history books. She had the most beautiful handwriting. She also loved to travel. We went to Europe and we also toured the Eastern part of the United States. We even went to the White House, as tourists, not guests.

When my mom started teaching in the mid-forties, teachers wore gloves, hats, high heels, and dresses to school. How things have changed!

In addition to daughter Nancy’s thoughts about her mother, we spoke to Joan Kaczorowski, who was known as Mrs. McGhee at Franklin School, when she taught with Geraldine.

“She was very popular,” Joan recalls, “and a dedicated teacher, who was well-respected and loved her job. When her students left her classroom, they were well-prepared for the next grade level.”

If you would like to send a birthday greeting or note to Geraldine Webb for her 100th birthday, please address it to her c/o The Santa Monica Star, 1112 Montana Avenue, #525, Santa Monica, CA 90403, and we will deliver it to her.

By Nancy Ramsey

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