Bay Bombers

One good thing about getting older is remembering when. I remember when I saw the Rolling Stones preform at the San Jose Civic Auditorium back in the 60’s. At the Civic I could actually see the stage and the Stones without binoculars.

Now something from the good old days is back ROLLER DERBY !!! at the Civic Auditorium.

Roller Derby got it’s beginning, in the USA, in 1935.Image Hosted by

Back in the 60’s my dad and I watched the (San Francisco) Bay Bombers on TV. We saw Charlie O’Connel and Joanie Weston (the Blond Bomber), the team captains, and Ann Calvello (Demon of the Derby) pummel each other on the banked track.

Roller derby seemed to disappear for some time from TV and my thoughts. Then the other day while driving on Almaden Blvd. in San Jose, I saw a homemade sign of a Derby skater and in the window a sign advertising that nights game.

Image Hosted by

I was not able to catch the game last night because unfortunately I had to work.

Today as I was driving my taxi customers, I asked if they had ever heard of Weston and Calvello. Not only had heard of the skaters, but they told me their memories of the glory days of Roller Derby.

The San Jose Civic Auditorium tickets

Check out Roller Derby’s Bay Bombers on

And Wayne has a blog dedicated to Roller Derby action.

10 Comments so far

  1. scott evans (unregistered) on August 28th, 2005 @ 10:03 pm

    And roller derby lives on in SF with the newly formed Bay Area Derby Girls league.

  2. Wayne Hurlbert (unregistered) on August 29th, 2005 @ 4:22 am

    It’s great to see so much support for the ongoing revival of the great sport of roller derby. Support like yours will go far in helping bring roller derby back to glory for the fans and skaters.

  3. Tim Witherell (unregistered) on September 15th, 2005 @ 4:27 pm

    I have roughly 700 slides of the Bay Bommbers dated back to 1960 that I”am selling. They have been protected in a hard metal case for all these years and are in perfect condition.I know there has to be someone that loved these as I have. They were taken by a dear – late friend- Dorothy Hopkins.

  4. Ricardo Casaine (unregistered) on October 16th, 2005 @ 7:06 pm

    My father played professional Roller Derby for the Bay Bombers in the 60’s under the same name as mine (Ricardo Casaine). I would appreciate any info that can be provided as I would like to no more about his carreer in roller derby.

  5. joann Landers (unregistered) on October 21st, 2005 @ 11:05 pm

    Ricardo, I wish you luck. If I run across any info. I’ll let you know. Did you check with the others that left comments on this post?

  6. jamie horton (unregistered) on January 7th, 2006 @ 4:26 pm

    I don’t know much about slides, but I am interested in your collection. Can you e-mail some more information as I am interested in buying it. Thx, Jamie

  7. Ed (unregistered) on January 14th, 2006 @ 4:23 pm

    Is there any site that has some short clips of the old roller derby programs?


  8. Fredo (unregistered) on January 21st, 2006 @ 1:27 pm

    Chanced on this blog. I recall watching the Derby mostly on weekends on KTVU 2 from the Kezar Pavillion with host Walt Harris. I think the strategy was to market the game via the tube in order to attract fans to when the Derby came to town. Along with Charlie O, Joanie, and Ann, I also recall Tony Roman and his wife Carol (?) who specialized in jamming. Those were interesting times and thanks for rekindling those memories.

  9. Eddie (unregistered) on February 17th, 2006 @ 10:52 am

    Gary Radnich has Ann Calvello on his radio show often. She has had an eye removed due to cancer, I think. She was a ticket taker at the Giants new stadium. SHe still might be. I remember her and “Big Red ” Jenson skating for the Bombers before Charley O got there.
    I recall another Bomber who was announced as Vicky Bouchay of Paris France but I knew her as Vickey Boucher of Richmond, California. lol.

  10. joann Landers (unregistered) on February 17th, 2006 @ 11:00 am

    Thanks for the info, EDDIE

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