Gym sees remodel and rename in 1970

Riley Newell, Staff

They say that the memories made in high school will be carried with you for the rest of your life, and for the class of 1970, their memories seemed to be made in the gym.  

  “The gym was where I played basketball,” alumnus Richard (Dick) Dary said. “I was on the varsity basketball team for two years. In my senior year the team won the South Puget Sound League championship. 

Dary was one of the basketball captains/assistantsHe created a PHS single game scoring record where he scored 36 points 

“After the game I climbed the ladder to cut down the net, which was the custom when a team won the championship,” Dary said.  

Dary’s fellow classmate, Jerry Norman, was a track runner and former class officer. He was held in charge of senior dances and spoke during assemblies where he announced important people and their accomplishments.  

“We had PE class, of course and we did gymnastics, and we did all sorts of thingsbasketball,” Norman said. “I was also kind of good at that stuff, so I really enjoyed it.  

For Norman, he says he cannot remember most of his high school memories. That is very understandable knowing that he has not made one of those in 50 years. He says that he did, however, remember a place where students would go to make their own memories, a place that does not exist anymore 

“When I was a sophomore and a junior in the high school, we had something called the old gym,” Norman said. “It was the original gym built at Puyallup High School and that’s where in PE, we would play basketball there. But then the new gym was built so we had two gyms, the old gym. That’s were people kind of congregated before school,” 

Along with the new gym being built, came a new name: Paul Hanawalt Pavilion, named after Paul Hanawalt, a former principal, teacher, and basketball coach of Puyallup High School.  

“Paul Hanawalt was indeed a great educator. He would come into our locker room before each home game and wish us luck and then come in afterwards to congratulate us,” Dary said.  

Hanawalt advocated for the original gym to be built, new bleachers, new wood floors and a new gym all together. 

“An even better story about him was when I was in first grade at Maplewood. There had been a good snow, at least four inches, and he came into our classroom and asked if we all knew how to make a snowball. Imagine having kids throwing snowballs today at school,” Dary said 

The school board came up with the name during a meeting Monday, Feb. 23. The name was announced March 3 during halftime of the last League basketball game.  

“He hired my dad to teach in Puyallup. My dad taught in Puyallup for about two years and then we moved to California for just one year, Dary said. That proved to be a bad move so my dad called the Puyallup District to see if he could get a job. He spoke to Paul and was so impressed that Paul had remembered my dads name. He was hired back and taught in Puyallup until he suddenly died.