December 2014 (1) Candygrams

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Wednesday, December 17, 2014---USC Football Banquet

Trojan Candy arrived an hour early to the Ronald Tutor Campus Center for the 2014 Football Banquet. I had a stack of original, handmade trading cards of USC football players that were composed of team pictures that I took on Thursday, 8/14/2014, at the John McKay Center. My husband Jim produced them for me.

I made these cards for my oldest grandson Zane. Zane has become a USC fanatic since he accompanied me to the USC-Stanford football game in Palo Alto on Saturday, 9/6/2014. You can check out my blog article of that victory. My goal was to have my friends autograph their card for Zane.

Nelson AlgohlorNelson Algohlor and friendThe first friend who came in the lobby door was Nelson Agholor. Naturally, I took a picture of him first and then asked him to autograph his card for my grandson.

Here is the card with his autograph! A one of a kind! FIGHT ON, Nelson! During the evening, Trojan Candy was able to get 27 more cards autographed.

Trojan Candy wanted to take a picture of and get an autograph from every Senior. The next four pictures are of Seniors

Nathan Guertler
Nathan Guertler (8/19/2011)
Andre Heidari
Andre Heidari (9/8/2011)
Hayes Pullard
Hayes Pullard (8/19/2010)
Cody Temple
Cody Temple (5/3/2012)

Each friend signed his card for my grandson Zane. FIGHT ON, Nathan! FIGHT ON, Andre! FIGHT ON, Hayes! FIGHT ON, Cody!

Peter McBride
Friend Peter McBride (2/25/2011) came into the lobby next. FIGHT ON, Peter!

Then, I was able to take pictures of three more Seniors with fellow teammates.

Anthony Sarao and Peter McBride
Anthony Sarao (7/14/2011) and Peter McBride
Peter McBride and J.R. Tavai
Peter McBride with J.R. Tavai (8/26/2011)
Adoree' Jackson, Kevon Seymour, and Gerald Bowman
Adoree' Jackson, Kevon Seymour (8/16/2012), and Gerald Bowman (10/25/2012)

Each Senior, as well as Adoree', signed their card. FIGHT ON, Anthony! FIGHT ON, J.R.! FIGHT ON, Adoree! FIGHT ON, Kevon! FIGHT ON, Gerald!

Then, chimes beckoned everyone downstairs to the banquet room.

In the banquet room, Trojan Candy immediately saw some more football friends sitting at nearby tables.

Vanessa, Zach, and Ron Banner
Zach Banner (10/11/2012) posed with his parents Vanessa and Ron.

Anthony and Louise NeyerNext, Trojan Candy saw two smiling faces. It was Senior Anthony Neyer (10/28/2011) and his mom Louise. I met Louise at the 2014 Swim with Mike where Anthony swam in a relay. FIGHT ON, Anthony!

James, Venus, and Josh ShawTrojan Candy was so glad to see friend and Senior Josh Shaw (1/13/2012)sitting with his parents at a near by table. James and Venus Shaw graciously posed for a picture with Josh. I told Josh that I was so glad that he is back on the team. FIGHT ON, Josh!

At the very next table, Senior Giovanni di Poalo (8/24/2012) signed his card for Zane and smiled for a picture with Alexa. Alexa and Giovanni  di PoaloFIGHT ON, Gio!

Now it was time for dinner. The award ceremony started during dessert. There was an exciting, memorable Highlight Video of the 2014 season. Then Coach Steve Sarkisian recapped the season. Next, each Assistant Coach presented a trophy to individual players who distinguished themselves during the season.

Football SeniorsThere was a Trophy presentation for the Seniors. Each Senior was given a "Trojan Statuette." Trojan Candy took a group picture of the Seniors. Congratulations to all of the Seniors!

Randall Telfer and Teddy BakerAs the ten Seniors walked down from the stage, Trojan Candy took pictures of the two Seniors that I had missed earlier. I took a picture of Teddy Baker first. It was so nice to meet him, as Randall Telfer photo-bombed his teammate.

Gerald BowmanThen I was able to talk with friend Gerald Bowman. I interviewed Gerald on 10/25/2012 at the Heritage Hall desk. Gerald was the occupant of my husband Jim's and my football locker this season. We spoke about Philadelphia, which is Gerald's home. He remembered that my Trojan daughter Steffany was born near Philadelphia also. Gerald told me that he plans to eventually return to his home town. Then, Trojan Candy interjected, "After you have played in the NFL!" Gerald smiled. With that he signed the card for Zane and smiled for this picture. FIGHT ON, Teddy! FIGHT ON, Gerald!

Quinton Powell, Jahleel Pinner, Leonard Williams, and Scott FelixThe last award was the Mike McKeever Memorial Award winner that is awarded to the Most Valuable Player of the season. The team votes for the recipient of this award. The M.V.P. was Leonard Williams! Leonard celebrated with three friends---Quinton Powell, Jahleel Pinner, and Scott Felix (9/27/2012). Congratulations, Leonard!

Congratulations to all the trophy winners!

Michael, Sophia, Natalie, and Randall TelferOn the way out, Trojan Candy was able to take this picture of my last Senior friend. I have known this Senior for five years! Randall had spoken on behalf of all the Seniors. In his speech, he said that he would be back at next year's football banquet to celebrate his tenth year on the team! What a sense of humor! Randall introduced me to his family, and they posed for this picture. His dad Michael, mother Sophia, sister Natalie and Randall. FIGHT ON, Randall!

For even more pictures, CLICK HERE to see Trojan Candy's Google Plus album.

What a memorable evening!

FIGHT ON, USC Seniors!

FIGHT ON, USC Football Team!

Tuesday, December 16, 2014---"Unbroken" Reception and Preview

Carving stationTom's Urban RestaurantMy husband Jim and I were guests of my sister Pat and brother-in-law Dudley at the USC Athletics Louis Zamberini Scholarship Reception. We arrived at the Tom's Urban Restaurant in L.A. Live at 5:00 p.m.

The food was hot and delicious and the "open bar" was nice. There were three types of sliders, gourmet pizzas, homemade cookies, and a carving station with baked chicken, tri-tip roast beef, and cole slaw. Yum! I had my usual Shirley Temple from the bar.

Trojan Candy was able to take pictures of several friends who attended and/or donated to the scholarship.

Christine Ofiesh and Chris Fox
Christine Ofiesh and Chris Fox
Carol Fox and Colleen Crowley
Carol Fox and Colleen Crowley
Larry and Wandy Jung and Joanne Harris
Larry and Wandy Jung and their friend Joanne Harris
Gregg Millward and Mark and Karen Tanimura
Gregg Millward with Mark and Karen Tanimura
Bob and Val Padgett
Bob and Val Padgett
Don Winston
Don Winston
Greg Gilbert, Magdi El Shahawy and Coach Caryl Smith Gilbert
Greg Gilbert, Dr. Magdi El Shahawy and Caryl Smith Gilbert. FIGHT ON, USC Track and Field!
Ron Orr, Barbara Hedges and Dan Cassidy
Ron Orr, Barbara Hedges and Dan Cassidy
Gaby Smotrys and Rebecca Gramstrup
Working the sign-in table were Gaby Smotrys and Rebecca Gramstrup.
Dudley Poon, Sunny Shepherd and Pat Poon
Dudley Poon, Sunny Shepherd and Pat Poon
Marilyn Suazo, Joann Conley, Karen Bowman and Jack Conley
Marilyn Suazo, Joann Conley, Karen Bowman and Jack Conley
Amanda and Andy Enfield
Amanda and Coach Andy Enfield
Ice rink
After the reception ended at 6:30 p.m., the guests walked over to the Regal Theater to see the advance showing of Unbroken. We walked by the ice skaters on the L.A. Live outdoor skating rink.
Peter Smith
Congratulations on your Men's Tennis NCAA Championship, Coach Smith!
Pat Poon and Anna Collier
By the concession stand downstairs where we were treated with free drinks and popcorn, Trojan Candy took this picture of my sister and Coach Anna Collier. FIGHT ON, Women of Troy Sand Volleyball!

There were several USC Track and Field athletes who were invited to the preview. Why? USC Alumnus Louis Zamperini competed in track. Coaches Jovan Vavic and Dave Salo were also introduced by Don Winston, but the movie was starting shortly, so Trojan Candy could not take their pictures. FIGHT ON, Men's Water Polo! FIGHT ON, USC Swimming! Don also told the audience that over $200,000 had been raised for the Louis Zamperini Scholarship thus far!

UnbrokenLet the movie begin!

If you want to read more about Louis Zamperini, check out my Candygrams dated May 12, 2011.