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Famous Brooklyn Alumni

Feb 13, 2012 11:29 AM | 10 comments

I've been working steadily for the past few weeks to prepare a guide to our Brooklyn yearbook collection, which, as faithful readers will recall, has been mentioned before in the pages of this blog.  Knowing that Brooklyn has been home to so many famous people throughout the years, I couldn't help but wonder if we were perhaps sitting on a goldmine of before-they-were-famous photographs of Brooklyn-bred geniuses.  Could Woody Allen's (that is, Allen Konigsberg's) senior picture from Midwood High be tucked away in our stacks?  How about candid shots of Neils Diamond and Sedaka humming through the halls of Abraham Lincoln High School?  Or heroic images of Vincent Lombardi dominating the football field during his time at St. Francis Prepatory School? 

After a fair bit of research and cross-checking, I was able to find in the pages of our yearbooks a few former Brooklynites who went on to great fame in their respective endeavors.  Without further ado, I present you with a Brooklyn Collection puzzler!  Below are the fuzzed-out yearbook photographs of four Brooklyn high school alumni.  I'll give the year they graduated and the high school they attendend, along with a clue to the reason for their fame.  The rest, I leave to you!  Anyone who can guess any of their true identities wins my deep respect.  I'll post the answers, along with the senior photographs, this coming Thursday.  Let the guessing begin!

Alumna # 1

This petite, plucky actress was a singer at Lafayette High School, and after graduating in 1964 went on to gain fame not for singing sweet melodies, but for cracking wise on a popular TV sitcom.




Who is she?


Alumnus #2

This graduate of Sheepshead Bay High School, class of 1965, may lack the long roster of achievements enjoyed by many of his classmates, but he more than made up for it in his professional life, as an Emmy-winning writer for one of TV's most popular sitcoms.




Who is he?




Alumna #3

This ambitious student served as both Class Treasurer and Class President during her time at James Madison High School, from which she graduated in 1960.  Knowing the path her professional life would follow, it comes as no surprise that she readily took on the mantle of authority at so young an age.

Who is she?


Alumnus #4 

This graduate from Lafayette High School's class of 1951 had big dreams of becoming a radio announcer after finishing college, and would indeed become famous for his gift of gab. 




Who is he?


2/15/2012 12:01:22 PM #

This is a challenging puzzle!  
Allright, here goes...

Alumna #1  Petite and plucky?  Even with the photo blurred I'd recognize Rhea Perlman anywhere.

OK, Alumnus #2 - one of TV's most popular sitcoms?  It couldn't be Matt Groening because he's from Portland, OR, so it must be Larry David.

Alumna #3 might have been Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg but I think she would have graduated from high school sooner than 1960.  Hmmm.

Alumnus #4 I'm stumped!  Totally stumped on this one.

Can't wait to hear the answers and see the photos!


2/15/2012 5:19:53 PM #

Alumna #1
Carol Burnet

Alumna #2
Conan O'brian

Alumna #3
Condaleza Rice

Alumna #4
Robert Downing Sr.

Wyatt W. Anderson

2/15/2012 5:32:37 PM #

Hm, I don't know the others, but I'm guessing Larry David for #2 and Larry King for #4!


2/15/2012 6:13:15 PM #

1 -- Irene Cara
2 -- Ron Howard
3 -- Sonia Sotomayer
4 -- Howard Stern

tough quiz!  



2/15/2012 6:45:10 PM #

I don't know, but I have a few guesses.
1.  I think it must be Rita Moreno.
2.  This is undoubtedly the multi-talented James L. Brooks.  


2/15/2012 6:48:36 PM #

3. Most likely, this is Geraldine Ferraro.  
4. It has to be Wolf-Man Jack.

I'm a trivia expert, so these answers are probably right.  


2/15/2012 7:42:37 PM #

I agree that #1 is Rhea.
Could #4 be Larry King?

Leigh Fox

2/15/2012 10:45:44 PM #

I have no idea what the answers are, but here are my guesses.

1. Valerie Harper

2. Rob Riener

3. Sandra Day O'Connor

4. Regis Philben

Mary C Anderson

2/15/2012 10:47:57 PM #

What a stumper you've concocted!

I would have to say that #1 is not Rhea Perlman, as another commenter has suggested, but rather Roseanne Barr. Though not petite, she certainly "cracked wise" and had a wit more acerbic than the most sour of lemons. I know not if she is from Brooklyn, but that is my guess.

As for #2, I suggest that this is Jerry Seinfeld. On his sitcom, Seinfeld, he alway made jokes about "Ol' Sheepshead Bay." So that is my guess.

#3 is impossible to guess.

#4 can be none other than the legendary suspender model, Larry King, nee Lawrence Zeiger. I'll take that one to the bank!

Michael Ozrod

2/16/2012 1:15:47 PM #

Go Anderson family! I'm impressed!