|VALORIE JEAN LIGDA||Born: 1956-03-18|
|Father: MYRON GEORGE HERBERT LIGDA||Mother: EVELYN DALKE|
|Siblings: RICHARD WORTHINGTON LIGDA|
Valorie was the third and last child born to Herb and Evelyn Ligda. She was eleven when her father died in 1967. Her brother, Richard, and sister, Carol, were grown and away from home. Her mother, Evelyn, began drinking heavily. Valorie says she underwent a change in personality from “outgoing & confident” to “jaded & resentful,” in the years after her father’s death.
Valorie attended Awalt High School in Mt. View where, despite getting: ” . . . into pot [marijuana], and on rare occasions, LSD, mescaline, and other drugs,” she was an outstanding student, 1 graduating a year ahead of her class and allowing her the option of leaving home.
In June of 1973, Valorie left to enroll at Evergreen State College in Olympia, Washington. Evergreen was a new school created to be different than the traditional state schools which had a reputation of “an atmosphere for rebels.” 2 She developed an interest in Zen and spent the last weeks of the school year in Japan staying with host families. Her experience in Japan convinced her: “There was more to be had than what a college town like Olympia could offer.” She moved to Honolulu, first attending the New York Technical Institute studying architectural drafting, then transferring to Windward Community College in Kaneohe where she earned an Associate of Arts degree in May of 1977. 3
In November of 1976, she married Nafetalai Pouanga 4 and, “lived the Tongan life in the “bush” behind the Polynesian Culture Center in Laie, Oahu . . . devoted to his extended family.” The marriage lasted three years. In January of 1979, Valorie returned to school at Leeward Community College in Pearl City, taking drafting and business courses. 5 She left in May of 1980 and took a job documenting Hawaiian Independent Refinery’s compliance with E.P.A. standards during the construction of a hydrocracker and vacuum unit.
Valorie returned to California in August of 1981:
“Three factors made me return to the mainland. One was losing ground towards earning a living; mother’s drinking was more serious than ever; and a Hawaiian boyfriend was pressuring me to move in with him.”
Valorie moved back with her mother in Los Altos. In October, she took an office job with MedaSonics in Mt. View. Her return had a positive effect on her mother who stopped drinking in November of 1981.
In September of 1982, Valorie enrolled at San Jose State University, taking courses in business management. She maintained her high academic average. 6 She met David Musgrave. 7 They married on February 5, 1983 and lived in Dublin, California. Her first child, Sarah Valentine Musgrave, was born on August 7 at El Camino Hospital in Mt. View. Four months later, Valorie returned to part time work at MedaSonics. In January of 1984, she enrolled at Hayward State University to take calculus, maintaining a B average.
Valorie’s marriage was marred by her husband’s drug use. She was faced with the problems created by his thefts and writing bad checks. In September of 1984, she left her job so they could move to Idaho Falls near his family and away from the drug environment in which David was involved. She took part-time work and cared for Sarah; he became a cook in a popular restaurant. Her mother-in-law helped them buy a house. Whatever stabilization resulted from the move quickly deteriorated. In January of 1985, Valorie took Sarah back to Los Altos. 8
Valorie took office work, first for Ferry Morse Seed Company in Mt. View; then with DE Systems in Santa Clara; then with Sylva Machinery in San Carlos. In February of 1986, she met Dan Sewell, 9 an ex-Marine working as a cab driver. They were married on March 16, 1987. Her second child, Chelsea Margaret Rose Sewall, was born on May 27, 1988 at El Camino Hospital in Mt. View.
Valorie returned to work on August 25, 1987 as an Attendance Technician at Mt. View High School (formally Awalt High where she, her brother and sister all graduated). At that time the Sewalls were living at 981 Bonita, #19 in Mt. View. The marriage did not last. In 1991, Valorie was divorced and again living with her mother. She was working for Dialog Information Service, but still felt she could afford, ” anything but rent.” In 1992, Valorie married Mike Duran. Shortly after that marriage, she found it necessary to obtain a court order restraining him from attacking her. They were divorced in 1993.
On December 20, 1992, Sarah suffered an aneurysm induced stroke which hospitalized her for over a month and caused the loss of her speech and movement in the right side of her body. She learned to use her left hand and to walk and run. After a short period in special schools, she returned as a regular student in the Los Altos schools. Within a few years, the effects of the stroke were no longer readily noticeable to a casual observer.
Valorie relied heavily on her mother for the help that was needed during Sarah’s rehabilitation. In 1994, the stress was too great. She lost her job. Valorie later went to work for N. I. S. in San Jose. She left that job in 1998. On March 1 of that year, she married Bill Galindo. They were living with her mother when her mother died in July. Her mother’s will left one sixth of her estate to Valorie.
- Her record shows 27 A’s and 9 B’s in two and a half years of high school. ↩
- Evergreen State College was the subject of an favorable article in the San Francisco Chronicle of December 19, 1982 which mentioned it was the only state school on the select list of sixteen colleges. ↩
- Valorie continued to earn excellent grades. She had a 3.4 grade point average at the College. ↩
- Nafetalai was born January 23, 1955 in Hihifo, Haapi, Tonga. ↩
- Valorie completed 19 semester hours with a 3.2 grade point average. ↩
- She completed 17 semester hours with a 3.3 grade point average. ↩
- David was born in Idaho on August 10, 1944. He had two daughters, Emily and Melanie, by a previous marriage. His mother’s family was directly descended from William Clayton, one of Brigham Young’s right hand men and the inventor of the pedometer used to measure how far the Mormons had walked in crossing the plains. ↩
- David last visited his daughter in December of 1985. The marriage was dissolved in December, 1986 in Santa Clara Superior Court with Valorie given sole custody of Sarah. The case number is 583050 ↩
- Daniel Lee Sewell was born September 22, 1947 in San Francisco. He graduated from high school in Redwood City. He had two sons, Joshua and Justin, from a previous marriage. The boys lived with their mother in Lorain, Ohio. ↩