A Digital History and Photo Archive for the Beresan District, Odessa, Russia





The Renner Family
Born July 2nd, 1947- Feilnbach, Germany



I immigrated to the USA with my parents and two younger brothers, Paul and Christian in 1953 when I was 6 years old. We lived on a small farm in Solen, North Dakota for about 2 years. It was there, on the farm, that my sister Valerie Anna was born. My dad worked as an auto mechanic at a small garage for a short time before he left us to set up a new home in Spokane, Washington. He received help from Joe Kiefel, a cousin from my mother's side. He found work at a small steel refinery and soon had enough money saved up to bring us to our new home in Spokane.

We lived in a neighborhood that was mixed with poor people such as us as well as some middle class up and coming business owners. I remember our good neighbors, Oscar Cooley, his wife and their children Jim and Joanne. We slept on military cots for what seemed a very long time and our home was warmed by a large wood stove.  To the best of my memory we were very happy there.

My dad found a better job a year or two after we arrived in Spokane, at a place called Union Iron Works. We now were able to afford a newer home just on the other side of the block. We lived there for a short while when for some reason we moved to the house next door. It was while we were living there that my Aunt, my mom's half sister, Elizabeth Hintz, and her 2 sons, John and Ed and daughter, Renee, moved in with us. Things were cramped but still I think we were happy during all that time.

We never owned a car until my brother Paul bought a 1955 Ford sedan post. Paul hauled everyone around...I should say that I actually bought the first car while attending North Central High School. I was a real stud...once we were short of gas money and my best friends, Dwight Lamp and Bert Syverson. We snuck into someone's back yard and siphoned gas from some old '49 Plymouth. Needless to say I got caught with fumes in my mouth and spent a day or two in Juvvie. That woke me up and I walked a straight line after that. My parents were devastated but they got over it.

Until we had a car our means of shopping consisted of a red Radio Flyer Wagon. My dad built a rack around it and that's how we hauled the groceries home. It was about a mile to Low Cost Grocery Store and once a week we made the haul...the whole family. That must have been a real sight!  There were two small neighborhood stores within a block of our house. On was called Anchor Grocery and the other was John's Grocery..just across the street from Anchor's. We only went to those two when we needed something fast. They were also more expensive than Low Cost.

The house I remember most is the one mom and dad bought on Carlisle street. 414 E. Carlisle. It also was within 1 block of all the other houses we lived in. By the time they bought that house he had landed a job at Western Pine Co. It was a large mill and again, located within 1 block from where we lived.  He worked there until around 1968-or '69. They were bought out by Boise Cascade and the mill closed. He stayed on for a short while until they dismantled the operation. He was the Watchman-Fireman-Engineer.

He got a job as the boiler room engineer at Long Lake Lumber Company and worked there until he retired in 1979 or so.

The first school I went to was Logan Elementary about 6 blocks from our homes. It was the first grade and I guess I have the honor of being the only Renner in this family to flunk. It may have been because I was learning a new language. I took the first grade over at St. Al's and even passed! My grades were average I guess, C's in English, A-B's in History and Geography, A's in Art and big fat F's in math. To this day I hate math.

All the while they were sending us to the local Catholic school about 9 city blocks away. Saint Aloyisous. All six of us kids graduated from there. I was a patrol boy and head altar boy. I never really liked school but did my best.

I attended North Central High until I was a junior and dropped out to join the United States Marine Corps in October of 1964. I did two tours of duty in Viet Nam and reached the rank of Sgt.E-5. E-6 was mine for the taking but I was tired of military life and didn't want to spend another tour or two in The Nam.

After returning home from Camp Pendelton, near Oceanside, CA., I worked a few minor jobs in Spokane while still living with my parents. I was only 20 or 21 years old. I worked at grunt jobs to good paying sales jobs but ended up working with my dad at Long Lake Lumber Co. My dad was well liked there and I was proud to be his son. He was the power plant engineer and I worked on the stacker machine outside and also the green chain. When I quit after 14 years I was the edgerman. (1981). My dad had retired a few years before and I sure missed seeing him at work. In 1971 or 72 I attended SFCC and finished a 3 year course in photography. I specialized in Commercial photography and that is what I still do today. In 1972 I started a company called Pegasus Associated Photographers. Two others were involved with the company and they left the firm after college. I had a bad marriage that lasted 5 years and in 1975 I got a divorce. A few years later I met a great woman (Sandee) and we were married in 1977. We were great friends (and still are) but in 1990 we separated and divorced. After a few wild years I met Linde and she is my soul mate.

During the last 20 years I have been involved in Motocross, Cross Country Skiing, Snowmobiles, Kenpo Karate (Blue Belt) and since 1989 I have discovered my passion for bicycle road racing with the Baddlands Cycling Club. I was president for 3 years and currently am on the board. We are the largest racing club in the Northwest and put on 2 major races and a full spring to fall race agenda. We are a USCF sanctioned club and I am also a USCF cat 3 racer and official.

Currently I still own Pegasus Photography, and also am Vice President of the M23 Group. We specialize in digital photography and output and also provide Internet Services including dial up accounts, hosting, web page design, programming and scripting.



Alex Renner

Paul Renner

Christian Renner

Valerie Renner Ingram

Angie Renner Petticrew

Michael Renner





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Last Update:05/02/10