Meet Your New Neighbors
Hilltop Welcoming Service
First of all, I want to wish a “Happy Mother’s Day” to all mothers everywhere from Hilltop Welcoming Service. I hope all of you have a very special day.
Over the years, Roberta and Dennis Springer loved coming up to Tehachapi from the Antelope Valley to visit Roberta’s sister, Cristina McKee, a local artist who at the time was associated with Gallery and Gifts. In December 2013, they finally had the opportunity to move here and found their home in Sand Canyon. They are celebrating their 25th anniversary this year and what better way to celebrate than with a new house.
Dennis is a truck driver in the very specialized field of hauling hazardous materials, a job he has held for 25 years. He was born in Downey and raised with a brother and sister in the Antelope Valley. His brother is also a hazmat hauler who, according to Roberta, saves money on rent by living in his truck. In his free time, Dennis builds “chopper” motorcycles which he sells and also likes to work on computers. Both Dennis and Roberta enjoy “rock-hounding” when they get the chance. Their new location is perfect for that hobby.
Roberta is currently a full time student at Antelope Valley College and plans to work in Tehachapi in the near future. She was born to a military family and spent many of her early years in places like Spain and Iceland. She says she was primarily raised in Europe but her family finally settled in the Antelope Valley. Her mother still lives in Lancaster as do her brother and sister. Her brother is with the Sheriff’s Department. When she is not working or in school, Roberta manages her little farm. Her animals are her primary hobby. On my arrival, I was greeted by three energetic pugs – Rieu, Peace Pilgrim and Marlow. They also have a mutt named Dude, a pot belly pig appropriately named Pork Chop and two goats named Ruby and Snow.
The Springers have two grown sons. Sean (24) lives in Pearblossom and Zach (23) lives in Lancaster which is still close enough for family visits. Welcome to Dennis and Roberta and I know you will enjoy your country-style living.
Affordability was the main reason Dan Olson was originally attracted to Tehachapi. He is now spending all of his rare free time making his new Bear Valley house into a comfortable retreat from his hectic work schedule. Dan spends most of his week on the road. He has worked for Computer Sciences Corporation since 2005, maintaining gunnery simulators for all branches of the military. Since corporate offices are in Orlando and his supervisor is in Fairview, Ky., Dan’s local office is in his home. His territory includes Corona, Riverside, Ontario, Apple Valley, King City, Madera and even Reno and North Las Vegas. He calls the simulators a “two million dollar Nintendo game” and says that he and his associates have, on occasion, met in the middle of the night to trade parts. He has studied electronics since he was 12 years old and claims that, over the years, he has been “mentored by the best”.
Dan was raised in the Los Angeles area with an older brother. His family moved around a lot during his early years. At one time or another they lived in Sun Valley, Pacoima, Colton and Azusa. In fact, Dan says that he attended 17 elementary schools which made it difficult to develop close friendships. It was not until 2001 that Dan discovered that he had a half-brother who had been given up for adoption in infancy.
After high school Dan spent two years as an Army Ranger during the Vietnamese War, spending time in both Viet Nam and Germany. During our conversation, he let it slip that he had been decorated for valor and then explained that a “hero” is just a regular guy who finds a way out of a tough situation.
I would best describe Dan as an “information sponge”. He can talk at length on almost any topic and holds a very high value on life experiences. It is this set of values that he is trying to teach his son, Justin, who will be entering high school this coming fall. Welcome to Tehachapi Dan and Justin!