What service do you attend at Community?
Joe: When we started attending Community (in 2001) the services were in K-hall and we’d go to the early service. Now we most often attend the late service in Escondido. When the San Marcos campus started we felt that we wanted to support Pastor Joel, so we decided that we’d worship the first Sunday of each month in San Marcos.
What activities are you involved in at Community?
Joe: We, of course, do the drama ministry. Linda is a performer and I do the stage work. We were both teachers and we did drama in our classrooms.
Linda: I think you have to be a bit of an actor when you teach to get things across to your students. The first play that we did at Community was Our Town and since then I think I’ve been in 20-some plays. It is a fun group and Joe is a very good set designer.
Joe: We are also Greeters and participate in 50+. I help with the cooking and Linda helps with the decorations. For the past ten years I have helped design the sets for Vacation Bible School. Scott Hayward and I work together on that. I’m not the real builder. I design it, Scott builds it, and then I paint it. I would say that the Joseph theme was the most difficult set. Scott came up with the idea to create a pyramid in the fellowship hall and then we designed panels so that people felt like they were entering a pyramid as they walked in.
How did you end up in North County?
Linda: I am from Iowa. I graduated from Drake University in Education and then moved out here without a job and was hired as a teacher in Ramona. I started out in first grade and moved up to fifth grade. I have two daughter and three grandchildren. My oldest granddaughter, Brittani, has been in a lot of the plays at church.
Joe: I was born in Tijuana, but raised in the Santa Monica area. Growing up I always wanted to go to Hawaii. When I was in 3rd grade I remember we were studying about Hawaii. When I got older I would go to the beach in Santa Monica often (I was a lifeguard) and the big thing was that someday I would go to Hawaii and ride the big surf. So when I was in the military I got stationed in Hawaii. While there, I lived in a Hawaiian village and really got to know the locals and learn a lot about the island. I was stationed in Hawaii for two years and then my whole division went to Vietnam.
I lived in Hawaii for a short time after the military. Then, I moved back to Santa Monica where I started teaching and ended up in Escondido. I have taught anything from preschool all the way up through the university. My primary focus was the elementary level.
How did you two meet?
Joe: We were both attending another church and we had mutual friends that wanted to introduce us. I was going away on a trip and thought if I am ever going to meet this lady I better go introduce myself. I walked up to her, introduced myself, and asked if it would be okay to give her a call when I came back from my trip.
Linda: When he came over to introduce himself, I was talking to another friend telling her how these friends wanted to introduce us and I told her that I felt just like a kid. I was 49 years old and I had butterflies. When I saw him walking across to introduce himself I didn’t know what to say, but I guess the rest is history. We’ve been married nearly 22 years now.
What are your hobbies?
Joe: My favorite thing is working in the garden. I spend a lot of time in the garden. I am also very active in our community.
Linda: Mostly we like to travel. Joe’s favorite place is Hawaii, especially Hilo. And we’ll spend time in Kona to go snorkeling. We’ve been to Australia and all over Europe. I have friends that live outside of London, and a pen pal that I had when I was ten years old who lives in Whales. We’ve been there to visit a few times. I also have relatives in Sweden that I connected with via the Internet.
Joe: Linda’s maiden name is unique so she has been able to research and find a lot of distant relatives. If your name is Drottz then you are related. My last name, Sanchez, is much more common. Sanchez means “guards of the church” so if you were a guard then you were named Sanchez.
Joe: One of my favorite things to do is go to the desert. For many years I would go to Death Valley over Veterans Day when they have the 49erns encampment. I would go out there, along with 10,000 other people, and enjoy blue grass music, burro races, and artists.
Linda: One of the things I like most about San Diego is that you are so close to so many different topographies. If you want to go to the desert it is just an hour drive, or you can go to the mountains, or to the beach. They are so vastly different yet they are just in a short drive away.
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