By George Stephens
Information Advisory Committe (IAC) Member
Meet Pete and Belinda Anderson. Pete was born and raised in Denver, Colorado, with his early years spent near Cherry Hills Golf Club. He started playing golf at six years old and came to Palm Springs in his junior year of high school. Belinda was the first baby born in Desert Hot Springs. You don’t get more native that that!
They graduated in the same class at Palm Springs High School in 1961. Pete left for Vietnam with the US Army at Tan Son Nhut airbase to serve our country; Belinda married, and while raising her children, worked in Pasadena to put her first husband through college. After Pete and Belinda their separate ways, they reconnected 27 years later at the 50th Anniversary of the Founding of Palm Springs High School in 1988.
While attending the College of the Desert (COD) in Rancho Mirage, Pete was instrumental in asking Walt Disney personally for the use of the Road Runner mascot for the college’s use. His efforts as the vice president of the student body resulted in the COD being referred to ever since as the “Roadrunners.”
Pete has been a mainstay member of the Veterans Club since he and Belinda moved here in 2007. Our community has approximately 400 veterans, and the Veterans Club represents them well. The Veterans Club has many interesting activities, including the flag raising ceremony on Memorial Day, selling flags, and helping dispose of old worn-out flags. During Christmas they partner with the marines from 29 Palms to collect toys for the “Toys for Tots” program. Look for the collection bins in the Montecito and Santa Rosa clubhouses, and the golf pro shop at Christmastime.
In addition, Pete leads the scholarship program for Shadow Hills High School: “The Knights of the Roundtable.” In a typical year, thousands of dollars are given to deserving students who otherwise wouldn’t have scholarship money to continue their college education. Pete also teaches a military history class at the high school for the Junior ROTC members.
How did Pete and Belinda end up in Shadow Hills? They’ll tell you they had friends who lived in Sun City Palm Desert, whom they would visit regularly from their home in Whittier, California. They looked to relocate in several locations, including Las Vegas and Phoenix, and when a new house became available in Shadow Hills they jumped at the chance to live in our community. They had examined places to retire for many years, but they found the fair prices, great amenities, reasonable dues, and proximity to the beach and to the Ontario Airport were the deciding factors.
Pete has been instrumental in the development of Shadow Hills clubs and organizations since they moved here 10 years ago. Belinda has been involved with the Toys for Tots Christmas Program, the Women’s Golf Club, and the Men’s Canadian/American Golf Tournament.
They have five great-grandchildren who live in Colorado and two children in the Pasadena area. Their biggest challenges were Belinda putting her first husband through college and Pete getting married at 47 years old. Their mutual hero in real life was Ronald Reagan. They have a rich social life, and they value loyalty as the best measure of friendship. We are certainly a richer community for having Pete and Belinda to call our neighbors!
Residents are encouraged to suggest candidates for the Sun City Shadow Hills website’s Human Interest stories. The Information Advisory Committee is inclusive for all residents in Shadow Hills. You may make your suggestions directly to firstname.lastname@example.org.