The Stories Behind the Smiles (of the guys behind the gate)

Taylor Thompson '20, Staff Writer

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Monday morning. You grudgingly wake up; you throw on your wrinkled, hair-covered blazer; you shove down a few bites of Cheerios; you chug a cup of coffee; you hop on the bus or into your car. You drive to Marymount, already panicked about the essays and assignments due today, but you are welcomed into the school by the most radiant, sincere, and whole-hearted smiles. The smiles of Billy Lee Hale (Bill,) Jose Enrique Castro Funes, and Tony Hale: the guys behind the gate.

Courtesy of Taylor Thompson ’20

Originally from the bay area of Northern California, Bill always wanted to be a cop. In 1971, he voluntarily joined the military in the midst of the historic Vietnam War. In subsequent years, he worked as a highway patrol cop, employee at Eastman Kodak, created a handyman business, and then found his path: security. After working at Harvard Westlake and Polytechnic School in Pasadena, Bill found Marymount, where he has been working for almost thirteen years. Father of three children and six grandchildren, Bill has learned “to listen” and “to love.” Proud of the family he has, proud of the friendships he has built, proud of serving you as you drive through the gate and sit in class, proud of the love he shares with “our community,” he smiles at you as you enter onto the campus.  

Courtesy of Taylor Thompson ’20

Born and raised in Los Angeles, California, Jose shared a similar dream and career path as Bill: he always aspired to be a cop. After Jose graduated high school, he completed college credits and worked in a medical assistance group. Soon after, he started working at Brentwood School in security and soon found Marymount. He’s been with us for six years. When he goes home from a long day, he sees his wife and two kids, telling them that he’s “here till the long run – hopefully until Bill’s age.” He notes the change of working at a coed school and working at an all-girls school. As he smiles, he thinks to himself, there is so much to learn “from the community here, and I am looking forward to it.”

Courtesy of Taylor Thompson ’20

Tony Hale, son of Bill, grew up with a multitude of dreams. As a child, he loved soccer and hoped to pursue it as an adult. However, deep down, Tony always felt a passion for helping people, seen through his desire to be a firefighter. After Tony finished high school, he attended college at UCLA and studied economics; soon after, he tried “the whole suit and tie thing,” but he soon discovered what he loved: security. In 2009, Tony and his dad founded the security company that runs Marymount and various other schools. Tony feels that “the Marymount community is unlike any other. We have been around for so long that we get to know the families.” Marymount has also shown him that “there are some decent people in the world…I feel gratitude for the small things people do such as asking me how my weekend went.” He smiles as he reflects on the people he has met (that you are related to,) the experiences he has had, and the gratitude he feels.

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1 Comment

One Response to “The Stories Behind the Smiles (of the guys behind the gate)”

  1. Kelly L Sodl on December 10th, 2018 1:49 pm

    Taylor I loved this article! It was such a good idea to interview these 3 men- I had always wondered Bill’s story particularly. This is one of my favorite articles I have ever read!

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The Stories Behind the Smiles (of the guys behind the gate)