Terry Gorman

(See a collection of Terry and Mrs. K howling with the wolves Go HERE)

When the smoke cleared and the reality set in......I realized that I needed to prepare myself for the future. Gone were the weekends working at "Neenies famous Weenies" at the beach and all those other part time summer jobs I had enjoyed. Shortly after Grad Night, I was lucky to gain employment with a local Ford Dealership in the Westwood area. I would remain with these folks as a mechanic until they closed their doors a year later. Part of the management from there relocated to the local Chevrolet Dealership in West L.A. and invited me to come with them, where I would stay for many years. While there, I was able to go to work early, then head over to SMCC for the rest of the day and into the evening classes. I was able to graduate with degrees in Business, Math, and Physical Education - any of which I thought would be beneficial to a real job in the future.

During my Pico Tech years, I participated in Football and Track, finally improving my Pole Vault height to 14'6". Life was fun with working, going to school, and building my first race car at the Bow-Tie Dealership. We ran the car locally for years, and made the final pass with it during the Last Great Drag Race at Lions Drag strip in 1972. It was then time to head over the hill to SFVSC (now CSUN) to continue my education. Although I had been accepted to attend the CHP Academy in LA, I decided to finish my degree, thinking I could always return if need be. Playing football and running track contributed to some great times at SFVSC. There, I again improved my Pole Vault height to 16'6', made a lot of new friends and enjoyed life.

Upon graduation, I was all set to travel to Long Beach State in the fall for my Masters in Kinesiology; however, Pennzoil offered me a full time job after completing my summer part time work with them. I could hardly say no, and there was always time to head back and get my advanced degree, right? After being at Pennzoil for about seven months, I was approached with a promotion opportunity of a lifetime. They were looking to put a full time person out in the racing world to promote their products and act as a field Racing Representative. With my love of racing and my knowledge of many in the industry and racing community, I was ready to take the show on the road. The job, however, entailed leaving my home base in L.A. after the Winternationals in Pomona, and returning in late November after the NHRA world finals and the end of the AMA motocross schedule. Home for 10 months of the year was a 30' custom built motorhome that was not only home; but office, part time race shop, and command center. In addition to racing at Lion's, I had added motorcycle racing to my "fun stuff to do", and any weekend I could be found at Ascot Park, Lake Elsinore, CA, or participating in the SCORE off-road races - the Baja 500 and 1000.

The next four years were great and adventurous, racing at numerous points of America and Canada, as well as the Mexico. By the time I turned in my vehicle keys, I had driven over 300,000 miles in the quest of racing, various trade school seminars, seminars at national events, exhibitions at high schools, and setting up promotional events nationwide. After retirement from the road at the end of 1975, came a promotion to a sales position in Saint Louis, MO. I worked that market for two years before being promoted to the position of Branch Manager in Kansas City, MO. I was finally back home, holding the title of being the youngest Manager Pennzoil ever had. I did have a final shot at immortality before leaving St. Louis, with an attempt to break the two-man world speed record in a Blown Fuel Hydroplane. Unfortunately, however, the record is still intact.

Over the next 20+ years, other promotions led to Regional Director for Pennzoil in Atlanta, and a few years later to District Manager for the state of Florida. One of the very first duties I had in Florida was to represent Pennzoil at the Birthday party of golfer Arnold Palmer. Unbeknownst to me, my blind date for that occasion would play a very important role in my future. A long-distance romance ensued, since she lived in Orlando, and I was three hours away in South Florida. We did have many memorable get-aways, including trips to Ireland, the Bahamas, and anywhere we could drive/fly in order to attend a NASCAR, NHRA, or INDY CAR race. We added> aviation to our list of favorite things to do, and many weekends were spent just flying to various sites in Florida to see something new. For years we flew to attend the annual SUN'n'FUN FLY-IN held in Lakeland, FL. It is the second largest fly-in (behind Oshkosh, WI) weeklong event for civilian and military pilots. In addition, the event always boasts other activities such as off-shore boat racing or poker-runs, which we also enjoyed.

Retirement from Pennzoil finally came after 30 years, and I looked forward to golfing, smoking cigars, and engaging in target practice with my assortment of hand cannons. Those whimsies, however, were short-lived. I grew restless, since one can play only so much golf, and most of my buddies were still working. On a whim, my girl-friend suggested I look into Law Enforcement, since I had always had an interest. I did so, and was accepted into the Orange County (Orlando, FL) Sheriff's Office Academy. After completion, I was taken into the fold of law enforcement. Working there with the Major Crimes Unit was extremely exciting and enjoyable. During that time, I spent numerous hours on the Casey Anthony murder case - both in-house and at the FBI lab in Tampa, Florida. I also enjoyed instructing the semi-annual class of the Civilian Law Enforcement Academy in the collection, preservation, and correct chain of custody methods with regard to Evidence. Another position I held with OCSO was that of Drug and Firearm vault custodian, which was also fun. It was a really difficult decision to leave the work and the people at the Sheriff's Office to retire last year, but maybe this time I will succeed at retirement . . Maybe.

I feel privileged to have done a lot, seen a lot, traveled a lot, and to have memories too numerous to list. A few of the most memorable are: I was there when a good friend, Art Scholl (Stunt pilot killed while making the movie Top Gun) flew under the Arch in Saint Louis, MO I was there when Kenny Bernstein was the first to run 300 miles an hour in a quarter mile I was there when Don Prudhomme broke the six second record for a quarter mile run I was there when Dale Earnhardt was killed in Daytona

All in all, it was a good life until 3/21/2014. That's when I finally made it official after 24 years, and Ms. K became my wife. Now life is SUPER, with my soul mate by my side all the time. We will be celebrating our six-month wedding anniversary when we are in California celebrating my 50th high school reunion.

We both look forward to this big event. I hope that this finds my classmates and their families happy and healthy, as we renew old acquaintances.