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Elliotts have deep ties to Manteca schools
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Marion and Mona Elliott at home in their Manteca living room. - photo by GLENN KAHL/The Bulletin

Marion and Mona Elliott are definitely woven into the fabric of Manteca.
 An accomplished teacher, referee and school principal, Marion also gleans history from the pages of the Manteca Bulletin dating back a century for weekly columns as he’s done for more than three decades.
Mona worked at Calla Elementary School in the office when Calla was its own district.  She was later assigned to the Manteca Unified School District office in an administrative assistant’s capacity.
Marion’s mother will be remembered by many business people and service club members as the beloved “Goldie” who ran a small restaurant in the 100 block of North Main Street. Her first location was on Yosemite Avenue near Maple Avenue. It was a must for casual meetings and coffees clatches of the leaders of the community some 55 years ago including the chamber of commerce and its board of directors.
Marion found inspiration to pursue a career in education from his third grade teacher in Greenfield located in Monterey County. He recalled Mr. Van Horn related well to his students, with a positive attitude and how efectively he spoke to his students.
“The way you communicate with your students brings out the best in them,” Marion said. “A successful teacher finds a way to reach the parents as well and communicate with them who have their children 15 hours a day.”
Marion spent 37 years in the Manteca School District, beginning his career at New Haven School when it was actually its own school district located on North Austin Road north of Lathrop Road.  He taught eight years there, one year at Golden West Elementary School and four years at Lathrop Elementary School where he served just short of three years as its vice principal. He was then assigned to Manteca High as its vice principal replacing Albert Mezzetti for three years.
In 1979 Marion was sent in the middle of the year to Lincoln Elementary School where he served as principal for 17 years before he retired.
“That was a time when the district allowed principals to interview their prospective teachers for teacher openings,” he said. 
He recalled he had a good relationship with his staff both professionally and socially. Marion and Mona would host beginning of the year parties at his Manteca home for the school staff. He said running a school is all about morale.
He noted many of the students came from single parent families.
One home visit made him aware a child was not being given a good breakfast before being sent off to school. That opened Marion’s eyes to the probability other children were in the same predicament.  Two years before he retired in 1995 he initiated a free and reduced breakfasts for the many kids going to school hungry.
“Nothing is easy but I would do it all over again,” he said. 
In 1960 Elliott was the last part-time director of the Manteca Recreation Department.  In 1992 he was named to the Manteca High Hall of Fame and in 1997 to the Manteca Hall of Fame.  In 2005 he was lauded again and named to the Babe Ruth Little League Hall of Fame. 
In 1962 he started Babe Ruth youth baseball in Manteca. He was later named as state and regional commissioner continuing in that leadership capacity for 50 seasons.
He worked as high school football and basketball official and umped baseball noting it was a relaxing time from being a school administrator.  In 42 years of umping he only ejected two people for the use of profanity.  He said he and fellow umps had been cautioned about ejecting coaches because it would forfeit the games – finding lesser means to address the problems.
The Elliotts moved to the Russian Colony on Castle Road in 1943 where he attended a two-classroom Castle School. He walked to school every day with friends including Wayne Castle who is today a regular volunteer at the Manteca Museum functions. 
Marion started playing a wooden clarinet in 1946 as a seventh-grade student at Yosemite School in Manteca.  He would continue playing the instrument for his four years as a student at Manteca High. In high school Marion would announce ball games from the press box at Gus Schmiedt Field.  He also spent two years with the U.S. Air Force ROTC at Fresno State University.
Marion later volunteered and went into the Army for two years assigned as a dental specialist. He later served in the reserves at Sharpe Depot.
He had met his future wife when he was a senior at Fresno State. He took Mona with him into the Army after he finished his basic training.  She was a college freshman having graduated from Clovis High. She had promised her mother she would go to college – but married Marion after her freshman year.
Marion and Mona are very active in St. Anthony’s Catholic Church. Marion is an active member of the Knights of Columbus.

To contact Glenn Kahl, email