Milt Mahler
1441 E 8th Street
Mesa, AZ 85203-6505 
Home: (480) 990-2106
Cell: (480) 878-8096
E-mail: miltmahler@cox.net

Updated 5/3/15:

My wife and three sons moved to AZ 30 plus years ago from MA.

Besides many jobs in MA I was employed in the AZ Dept of Corrections for 29 years doing inmate classification. I retired about 5 years ago.

Our three sons are all adults... two live out of state and one recently moved home until he is settled.

Both my wife and I have medical issues which causes limitations.

I enjoy writing to the Class:)

I always welcome classmates with open arms:)

Be well and be happy:)

milt:)

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Original post in 2001:

Not an exciting life...but it has been interesting :) I do work 10 hrs/day and 6 days/week so my time is a bit limited.

Let me see..."born on a mountain top in Tennessee'...no, that was Davy Crockett...wrong bio...oh ya...me...well I moved to Sharon with Mom and Dad and my older bro when I was 5. Mom and dad bought a house on Hampshire Ave in the Heights. My Mom still lives at the same house. My dad passed on in '64 and my brother passed away 7 years ago. Mom is alone and I try to visit every few years. I will see her this spring. My boys never did like me telling them how I walked to Elementary school in waist high snowdrifts in very cold weather. They just couldn't relate, they don't remember or they never saw snow. I remember that penny candy store across from the elementary school. Let me tell you that was heaven to a shy over weight kid!  Remember penny candy..you know that stuff that cost 25 cents a piece now!

Well skipping a few boring pages...I went to Nasson College which was a small Liberal Arts college in Springvale, Maine (south of Portland). Had a very nice experience there. It was a small school and my graduating class was probably equal to our HS grad class in size..perhaps smaller. I came out of my shell a bit, but continued my HS tradition of never going to a dance :(

After graduating with my BA in Psych I went to U. Mass in Amherst and got my M.Ed in Guidance and Counseling. U of M was a bit too large for my liking. I was living with Neil Pruchansky in North Hampton. 

Part of my studies was an internship at Belchertown State School (Belchertown..love that name) and I got some job contacts. After graduation I used one of my contacts to get a job with the State. I decided not to go on for my doctorate. In retrospect..a mistake. <Don't ask why..it still is one of my wishes to get my Doctorate..just might do it>

Anyway, my first job was with Mass Rehab in Holyoke with a latter transfer to the Greenfield office. Besides working with people who had mental health and physical disabilities, I worked with jail inmates. While in Holyoke I used to go to this gift shop by my office. There was this clerk who sold me the cards. Her parents owned the shop and her dad was also a firefighter for the City. I was living in Puffton Village in Amhest with Neil and some other guys when one day this clerk came to visit me. Gee a girl actually coming to see me. Wow! As the story goes, this clerk had told her sister that she saw me walking near the store one day and she saw my balding head (I've been balding for 50 years) and she told her sister that I was going to be the one she was going to marry. Well after a real short romance, marry we did. We celebrated our 27th anniversary in February :)

After 5 years of Mass Rehab, I went on to work for a new tech high school in Turners Falls, next to Greenfield. I was hired as their 1st guidance counselor and I had a 12 month contract. I became tenured after 3 years and then made one of those cross road decisions and decided to go to what I thought was a better opportunity. I was hired to run a Hearing Impaired program at Chicopee Comp HS. It was quite a jump in salary and I thought a good opportunity. Little did I know that I went to a political hot potato. The deaf community wanted a hearing impaired administrator (30 years latter I have a hearing loss) and the school had wanted a teacher to run the program..and who do they get..me. After a year the lobby got the program out of the mainstream and into the private sector. I didn't get booted and was kept on in the SPED department as a rehab specialist. The Mass Prop 2 1/2 came and I and 8000 educators got pinked slipped and I was one of them.  By that time we had a new born and two other sons. My in laws had moved out to AZ and convinced us to do the same. We rented a U Haul and moved and my sister-in-law took her three daughters and did the same. It was the trip from hell. That's another story.

We rolled into Scottsdale, AZ on 8/15/81 in 115 degree heat with one sick son and a townhouse that had a broken a/c. Donna, my wife, was ready for the return trip to MA.

Before I go on, let me give you a run down on the family:

Bob is 24 years old. His goal is to run his own business. He works for a movie production business. Jeff is 20 and his goal is to be a successful movie screen writer and director. Don't be surprised if you see his name in print. He has been to LA..has several contacts..has peddled his scripts and plans to move to LA in the spring or summer. He started working for a local video store at age 13 and worked his way up to manager. He recently left because the family business was sold to a chain. He now is a bank teller. Jonathan, our baby, is 19. His goal is to be an artist..cartoon or comics. He is quite good and is looking into art school. He works for the City of Scottsdale for their park system.

The boys still live at home and they can do that as long as they wish. They are all independent, pay their own bills and pay for their expenses to go to community college. Mom and Dad supply the roof, food and phone. Not a bad deal. Don't see marriage yet for any of them (anyone know any NJG's ?). That means I have no prospects of being a grand dad.

OK guys, don't throw anything at me, but got to tell you, I believe the better of the two sexes is the female. I've seen what my wife has done over the years for her "4" babies. Now that the boys are grown she is doing it over again. Our niece has a two year old and 6 month year old baby and Donna baby sits for them at the house. In order to arrange the hours she had done child care at a gym, where she had the kids, but now she works cleaning a gym at 3:30 in the morning so she can take care of them for the morning. So let me tell, she is certainly the cement that has held this family together! I was at all three births of our sons and even cut the umbilical chord for each of them. Let me tell you, if guys had to give birth, we'd have no kids :)

Well that's it...oops, I'm missing something..oh ya...the part of being in prison for 18 years (BTW, Alan K. sent me a note and said that he thought that I would make it to the big time and was happy to see our criminal system works :) )

When we arrived here I pounded the pavement for two months and was interviewed for a position for the Reception Center for State inmates. I interviewed on a Tuesday and started the next day! It is not quite so easy these days to get a job with the Department. The prison is located in Phoenix in not a great part of town. Right in the middle of prostitutes alley.  I don't look, touch, spindle or mutilate..just drive straight home..really.

I was signed on as a "seasonal worker" which meant my job was based on available funds. Eight months latter recession hit here and to keep a job I became a Correctional Officer at the Reception Center. I did that for 8 ot 9 months, and was able to get a permanent position back into  programs. What I do is the initial classification of adult inmates (from age 18 and older). I review an inmate's crime, history, ect and then do the interview in my office. No, there is no guard, no weapon, no panic button and the inmate is not shackled. The door is shut and that is it. The only thing I have is mace in my draw and a two way radio. Anyway, I decide what level of prison to send them, make recommendations for treatment needs, look at their potential of violence, escape potential, potential to be victimized, gang membership, etc. I also have done the Reception Center's monthly statistical report for years.  ( I'm glad I had Mrs Reardon for math..SHS's original warden)

I've done the job there for 18 years and have 7 to go for retirement. I am never bored. Is it safe? Probably as much as any job these days, but it has its moments. Last week I heard a commotion and ran out of my office to find this 20 year old stud (I even had classified him, not a nice guy) on the floor assaulting an Officer. I had to jump in to help restrain the inmate. So here I am, good old Milt on the floor struggling with this 20 year, much stronger inmate. Am I getting too old for this..you bet your "bippy"..and for those of you that have grown up in 50 years....you bet  your ass I am getting too old for that ;) If that wasn't bad enough..a few days ago I heard a thump from the classification office next to me to see the classification officer's computer and monitor on the floor. An inmate got angry and kicked it on the floor. Now that was bad...don't be messing around with our computers! Send that guy to maximum!!!  

Well folks that is the "abridged" version of my 35 years. Jeff, next time put a word limit on me...I am long winded ;)