Reminiscences of June, a Traveling Grandmother
1993 - June's Cruise to Mexico
- Published on Thursday, 29 May 2008 19:17
- Written by Stanton O. Berg
In October, (15-18) 1993, June took her first and only cruise. It was a short cruise that departed from San Pedro, California. Her ship was the "Viking Serenade", a part of the Royal Caribbean Line. June had an outside stateroom (Room 4058) so always had a view of the ocean.
June had taken a Northwest Airlines flight to Los Angeles earlier in the day (arriving at 11:00 AM) where cab transportation (Super Shuttle) was arranged to take June and the others to the embarkation pier at San Pedro. The embarkation point at San Pedro is located on the south edge of Los Angeles.
The cruise was a forensic science conference cruise sponsored by the International Association of Bloodstain Pattern Analysts. (IABPA) June and Stan's cruise tickets are shown on lower right...
The IABPA Conference Program
Because the departure site of this conference cruise of the International Association of Bloodstain Pattern Analysts was just south of Los Angeles, a number of the guest Speakers from the Los Angeles County court system were involved.
The guest speakers were: The Honorable Francis J. Hourigan, Los Angeles County Superior Court. Michael Clark, Los Angeles County Deputy Public Defender’s Office. William Hodgman, Director of Central Operations, Los Angeles County District Attorney.
Although unknown at the time of the 1993 IABPA conference, William Hodgman would later play a key role in the prosecution of the notorious 1995 O. J. Simpson murder case. He later made this comments about his participation in that case:
“When circumstances arose that we had to proceed to a preliminary hearing very early, the district attorney at the time, Gil Carcetti, asked me to work with prosecutor Marcia Clark to get through the preliminary. The preliminary hearing took about a week. At the conclusion Mr. Garcetti asked me to stay on and so I took a more active role in the case. Marcia Clark and I argued the pretrial motions. We performed the jury selection aspect of the case together, and then as we approached trial per se, my role was much more limited thereafter…
Dr. Henry Lee was also a featured conference speaker who would also play a key role in the later O. J. Simpson murder case as a crime scene analyst for the defense…the title of his conference talk was: “Enhancement of Bloodstain Patterns for Crime Scene Reconstruction.”
Six of the conference speakers were association members…The conference technical program was held on the afternoon of the 17th.
(Photo below right of June ready to go on board the "Viking Serenade" with friends Duane and Evelyn Rivard and myself.)
Although June worried about getting seasick, the weather was good, the sea was calm and no such problems resulted.
June's friends the Rivards (Duane and Evelyn) were our travel companions during the cruise. The organizers of the cruise conference had suggested that if any of the members of the IABPA had any friends who were attorney's, they should feel free to invite them. Duane was an attorney and he and Evelyn were happy to take advantage of the opportunity to take an interesting cruise at moderate pricing.
(The Rivards enjoyed this cruise and the group so much that they were our companions on later IAPBA conferences to North Miami Beach (1994), Albuquerque (1996), Seattle (1997), and Houston (1999).
June remembers well, the large amounts of non-stop food that was available on the cruise. June passed on the elaborate "Mid-night buffets."
The cruise went to Catalina Island and then on to Ensenada, Mexico. The return was from Ensenada directly to San Pedro.
June and I were pleased to have an outside stateroom with a view of the ocean.
The Royal Caribbean "Cruise Itinerary" listed departure from San Pedro at 6:00 PM on October 15th. The loading or Embarkation" was to begin at 1:00 PM.
Arrival at Ensenada, Mexico was scheduled for October 16th at 9:00 AM. Departure from Ensenada took place in the afternoon at 4:00 PM.
October 17th is simply listed as "At Sea"...June did go ashore for a short time in Mexico. The time however was limited so Grandma was happy to just go ashore, wander the dock area and photograph the ship from ashore.
(Photo below right is June about to enjoy a special ice cream desert following the evening dinner.)
Arrival back at Los Angeles was the next morning of October 18th. While not shown on the official printed itinerary, Catalina Island was included as a visit but not a stop.
Everyone had been issued a small white plastic ID "Cruise" card for use on the trip. The ship is designated as the "Viking Serenade" and the voyage as No. 292 with sailing date of 15 October 1993.
June's name is printed on the card along with passenger ID No. 5464451. Her stateroom is designated at 4058. The dining room to be used has the unusual name of the "Magic Flute". Her seating was "Main" at table 44.
When the ship reached international waters a gambling salon was opened. June was not a gambler and passed on this event.
The Viking Serenade Staff made a conference room available that was large enough to accommodate the attendee's and that had facilities to enable the speakers to make their presentations. (Conference Room A on the 4th floor.)
While this first cruise for June was a short one it was a fun time and a relaxing time. June enjoyed sitting on a top deck in a recliner type chair.
Note: This rather unusual forensic science conference aboard a ship was arranged and hosted by Nancy Sperber who is a successful attorney specializing in criminal defense cases. Her office at that time was in Los Angeles on Wilshire Boulevard.
Since this conference was to be the tenth (10th) annual conference of the IABPA, the organizers desired to make the conference a unique and different one from all others. This goal was certainly accomplished.
Nancy has now been our friend for many years. She was a very devoted member of the IABPA. June first met Nancy at one of the early International Association of Blood Stain Pattern Analysts conferences and they would renew their friendship at each of the succeeding conferences.
Nancy was an unusual attorney. Active membership in this organization (IABPA) was limited to persons who had taken the prescribed basic 40 hour course on blood stain pattern analysis. Nancy arranged to take the course and qualify for active membership.
Nancy later commented on how she followed June's sad progress into the shadows of Alzheimer's. June saw Nancy for the last time at the IABPA Conference in Harrisburg in 2002. As Alzheimer's started closing in on June, conference attendance of necessity was gradually eliminated. Nancy has recently (29 March 2009) made an entry in June's guest book. Nancy told of her concern for June, that she had been asking about June's progress and was sorry to hear of the passing of "such a fine lady.
(Photo below of June at the railing of the cruise ship with Ensenada, Mexico in background.)
After an almost 12 year journey into the shadows of Alzheimer's, early one morning in late October 2008, an exhausted June felt God's gentle touch on her shoulder and heard the words: "Come Home June!" As June lay like a wounded soldier on a battlefield, it was God's Angels that ushered June into a Heavenly Kingdom to the sound of a chorus of Angels...and into June's new home, a "Mansion on the Hilltop", where there is no pain, nor illness nor tears...June's funeral notice as published in the Minneapolis Star in October 2008 can be seen on this website in the drop down menu under the "In Memoriam" label - just Click on:
Reader's Notes: Readers are encouraged to read/review other chapter's (30 chapters) in this story of June K. Berg's life. (Reminiscences of a Traveling Grandmother) Each chapter is intended to be a capsule view of a small segment of June's life and travels'. It is also intended to be a small segment of history from a time period of World War II and the periods both pre and post World War II. You will find the history is accurate and continues to be updated as new records and photographs become available.
June, a very humble person would never consider her life worthy of a story. To me June has been a lady for "All Seasons". A very unique, bright and highly principled Christian lady. While June like everyone, has likes and dislikes, I have never found her to be uninterested or bored with any thing that life has presented her. June was well traveled. She traveled to Europe eleven (11) times and made at least 100 trips in and around the United States. June would be included in Tom Brokaw's "The Greatest Generation."
It has taken the horror of Alzheimer's to awaken me to finally and fully plumb the depths, and scope of June's Character, Spirit and Being. After battling Alzheimer's for almost 11 years, an exhausted June was finally called home by God on October 23rd, 2008. Her funeral notice as published in the Minneapolis Star in October 2008 can be seen on this website under the "In Memoriam" label - Click on: