Donna Belles lives on West 64th Street in the Detroit Shoreway neighborhood. She lives in a house that her grandmother owned. Donna tells the story of her grandmother who moved into the neighborhood in 1950. She came to Cleveland from Pennsylvania for work. At one time her grandmother owned three houses on the street. She was able to buy them because her uncles sent her money during the war. Belles has lived in the neighborhood her whole life. She reminisces about growing up in the neighborhood and how it changed for the worse over time. She believes that the 1970s were the low point. At that time the Gordon Square Arcade was a rooming house and was filthy and unkempt. The Detroit Shoreway Community Development Organization (DSCDO) was started by concerned citizens in the area who didn't want to see the neighborhood deteriorate. Today DSCDO makes sure buildings are maintained. Belles talks about the importance of the churches in the neighborhood. She also discusses how I-90 disrupted the neighborhood and especially St. Colman's.


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Belles, Donna J. (interveiwee)


Dorsey, Josh (interviewer)


Detroit Shoreway



Document Type

Oral History


64 minutes


Josh Dorsey [00:00:00] My name is Josh Dorsey, interviewing Donna Belles on March 21st, 2006 as part of the Detroit Shoreway Oral History Project. I am going to thank you for taking the time to do this today. If you just maybe start off by telling us, you know, kind of where you grew up and whether you were originally from the Cleveland area.

Donna Belles [00:00:22] Actually, I was born and raised here in the Detroit Shoreway area, I was born at the old St. John's Hospital on West 80th and Detroit, which is now St. Augustine's Manor. I live on West 64th off of Detroit Avenue between Detroit and Herman. And the house I live in is the house I grew up in. And. My grandmother, it was my grandmother's house, essentially. She had three houses, one on 67th, one on 64th the one I live in, and the one on 61st. What had happened? She had 12 children and she died without a will. Which was very comical. But eventually, I mean, we I lived there my whole life. And then when I was 18 or so, the estate finally got settled after about 12 years and I decided to buy the house for that. And then my children were raised there. So I've stayed same house. So I've seen all certain aspects of the neighborhood and and how it's changed.

Josh Dorsey [00:01:28] How did your, how did your grandmother come about buying three, three houses?

Donna Belles [00:01:32] I know, isn't that unusual? I mean, for me, it is. It's I was only five when my grandmother died. So I'm. How do I explain this? My mom was her youngest of twelve children, so I was very far removed from the history of my family. The older ones would know, you know, why grandma did this and did that. But I was only five when she died. I know that she came here in 1950 from Pennsylvania. And the last place she lived in Pennsylvania was Cassandra outside of Portage. And she came here. And I have not found out how she ended up with three houses. I know where she got the money for the three houses. My uncles, three of them, were in the service and would send her money home. So that's how she was able to purchase the houses. I know that. And they were done. The one on 67th was the first one. The one on 61st and then the one on 64th. But as far as how she got to West 67th and Detroit, I haven't figured that one out yet. So and I only have a few of my uncles left, you know. So I tried to talk to them and see if they remembered, but they were also in the service at the time so they don't really remember, you know. Or maybe I'm asking the wrong questions. I don't know.

Josh Dorsey [00:03:00] Do you, do you know why your grandma moved from Pennsylvania to like an urban center?

Donna Belles [00:03:03] For work. Because General Motors at the time and Ford. This was 1950, 1951. And you figure she had twelve children, nine boys, three girls. So the first five or six stayed back in Pennsylvania or had already started their lives. The other ones followed her here. So they essentially built a life up here because of the work that was afforded.

Josh Dorsey [00:03:36] Growing up, did you attend public school or private school?

Donna Belles [00:03:40] Public school. Watterson-Lake. And it was actually... Watterson-Lake was actually two separate schools, Watterson School and Lake School, and when I started school in 1969, that was the first year the new building had been completed. I started school in the old school that was just Watterson. And then in January, it was we went over to the new school part that was Watterson-Lake. And there, like on 73rd off of Detroit and the old school is still there.

Josh Dorsey [00:04:16] Did you, did you attend a university?

Donna Belles [00:04:19] University as far as college, you mean? Yes. Dyke College, which is now. God, I can't think of the name of it now. It's right in my head. Dave Myers College, is that it? Or did it switch since then? Myers College. Myers University. Now, it was Dyke College. And I went there from '81 to '86.

Josh Dorsey [00:04:45] What, what did you study?

Donna Belles [00:04:46] I have a bachelor's in marketing.

Josh Dorsey [00:04:57] After college, did you did you ever live anywhere besides the house you grew up in?

Donna Belles [00:05:02] No.

Josh Dorsey [00:05:02] Did you ever move out?

Donna Belles [00:05:03] Never. Well, no, I take that back. I moved down the street, another side of the street, down five houses when I first got married, we lived there for about. We got married in August. Ian was born in April and then the following October the house was ours. So a year? I'd say a little over a year, but on the same street.

Josh Dorsey [00:05:36] Did you, do you attend any of the churches in the? Church.

Donna Belles [00:05:39] Yeah. Yeah. I actually started out at Saint Colman's, which is located on West 65th closer to Lorain Avenue. And the reasoning for that was back when we were younger. The division line for the Diocese was West 65th. If you lived to the east of West 65th your parish was Saint Colman's. If you lived to the west of West 65th your parish was Our Lady of Mount Carmel. Even though we're actually closer to Our Lady of Mount Carmel, we went to Saint Colman's. So I went to church there.

Josh Dorsey [00:06:19] What. What was the purpose for the division of the two?

Donna Belles [00:06:23] Yeah, I'm really not sure. I think back then it was.

Josh Dorsey [00:06:26] This congregation was just so large for one church or.

Donna Belles [00:06:30] No, I wouldn't say that because Saint Colman's is actually very massive at that point, a very well-attended church. I think they were just they had very strict guidelines on where you went. Now, it's not like that, but, you know, it was I was all my friends went to Mount Carmel and I had to go to St. Colman's.

Josh Dorsey [00:06:54] St. Colman's was, I believe, first established by Irish immigrants or early Irish Roman Catholics is that is the congregation still really Irish or is it a mixture of like all Catholic.

Donna Belles [00:07:02] No.

Josh Dorsey [00:07:02] You know, age groups and ethnicities?

Donna Belles [00:07:06] And what had happened with St. Colman's was in about 75, 74, I-90 was being built. The freeway access I-90 on the West Side and it actually gutted the parish of St. Colman's because it was straight through the neighborhood. Lot of people, essentially moved and they moved to the suburbs because like you said, the mass exodus, but also because they needed to move. So they moved to different areas and eventually the church closed. I mean, sorry, the school closed down because most of the kids went to Mount Carmel after that. The church. I went to church there until I was a teenager, and I would have to say it had a good population of parishioners. The slow decline over the next 20 years brought it to a halt to where they actually even had a visiting priest there instead of a regular priest that would, a residence resident priest, I should say. And now it's more Hispanic. It's it's all Hispanic now, which is I'm glad they saved the parish because it's a gorgeous parish, gorgeous church. But my children go to Mount Carmel. They were. Yeah. So I switched when I got married.

Josh Dorsey [00:08:37] You say the congregation is mostly Hispanic. Is that mainly from immigrants in the Detroit Shoreway from like Puerto Rico or is it.

Donna Belles [00:08:48] Mixed. Their mixed.

Josh Dorsey [00:08:52] Okay.

Donna Belles [00:08:52] Mexican, Puerto Rican. Hispanic, as far as, I want to say, more South American than Central.

Josh Dorsey [00:09:04] Were you able to tell me you like the different ethnic groups that lived in the area, you know, in like in the early 20th century?

Donna Belles [00:09:07] Sure, to an extent. I mean, some of it's going to be from memory, some of it, you know, it's just assumed, I guess you would say. It was actually started out as an Italian neighborhood and a Romanian neighborhood population-wise. But I'm, I'm neither. I'm Polish. So the basis was Italian and Romanian down here by the lake, by Mount Carmel. The further you went towards, the further south you went was the Irish. That's why St. Colman's and all that. So it was a large influx around here at the beginning of the century, I would say. And it's it has stayed basically Italian. But we do have it's, it's mixed now. There's no doubt. But the Italian families that are here are linked to the history of the neighborhood. Same thing with the Romanians. Same thing with myself. You know, and I'm like, I'm half Polish, half Irish. So.

Josh Dorsey [00:10:17] I mean, you mentioned the Romanians right across the street. There's a Romanian church, St. Helena's, and then around the corner is the old St. Mary's Parish. Do you know why the two churches were, you know, so close together? And the only thing that separated them was just, just the difference between the Orthodox and the Catholic Catholic background?

Donna Belles [00:10:39] The the faith. Not real sure on that I know that if you look at most of the beginning of the 19th century. 1900s, I'm sorry. That a lot of churches here in Cleveland were. There was. Down in the Tremont area there are for a church on each corner of the intersection. They wanted their own parish. And if they were able to afford it, if they were able to to break off, they did. Religion played a large role and I would say all the immigrants' lives, one way or another.

Josh Dorsey [00:11:18] Do you know who currently who currently owns the old St. Mary's Church building?

Donna Belles [00:11:24] Oh, no, I don't. Not offhand. I could check that for you. I'm a librarian but.

Josh Dorsey [00:11:29] But regarding, you mentioned the exodus from the urban to the suburbs. Do you think that that puts a strain on some of the urban churches, you know, financially and the surrounding community, community economically? Just because, you know, they don't have the mass amount of people living there to kind of support, support the community in certain ways?

Donna Belles [00:11:53] Yes, it did. And actually, most neighborhoods or parishes faltered in the 70s because of that mass exodus. If they weren't strong enough to keep their parishioners there. Mount Carmel was strong enough to, you know, to keep their parishioners for different reasons. St.Colman's, I wouldn't say it was so much on the mass exodus. What really, really played a role in the downfall of St. Colman's was I-90 going through. That just ripped and the same thing that did the same thing to St. Ignatius up on West Boulevard. It just ripped the neighborhood in two. Split it right down the middle. But, yeah, if you didn't have a strong parish, if there weren't ties to keep the neighborhood together. Most neighborhoods were just devastated by the residents moving out of the city.

Josh Dorsey [00:12:55] And also from from the residents moving out. You could lose a lot of like what seemed like a lot of small business, probably on business.

Donna Belles [00:13:01] Yes.

Josh Dorsey [00:13:01] Especially from different ethnic groups like, you know. Say, for example, certain restaurants certain, certain stores. Have you, have you ever you experienced any changes like that in the area growing up? Like you just know certain businesses moving out are closing down to get away for more commercial, commercial?

Donna Belles [00:13:26] Yes and no. You said as far as growing up. A lot of businesses that were around family businesses growing up are no longer here. And it's not always the mass exodus. It wasn't always new technologies. Sometimes it was just they weren't able to keep the business up. There was [Anton] Bily's bakery right next to St. Helena's. That went out of business. I must have been seven years old. So that was probably '72 or '73. Best bakery, best doughnuts. But they did because that was because of new developments. They wanted him to change all his baking equipment to stainless steel instead of the old school type equipment that he had. And it was just too much money. He couldn't do it. So he just essentially closed the doors on that. Now, the flip side is Fiocca's is a bakery on West 69th, an Italian bakery that they didn't close until a few years ago. And that was because the family died out. The people that wanted to run, that ran the bakery finally died and nobody wanted to take it over.

Josh Dorsey [00:14:55] Aside from business, as well. What other types of, what other types of building are the Detroit Shoreway that are, you know, kind of historical to certain ethnic groups that might have been victim to shutting down or being changed into something else or still trying to fight to preserve, you know, that certain heritage?

Donna Belles [00:15:17] I think we hit bottom in the '70s with a lot of things and now we're finally bringing it out. What I mean for that is where we're sitting. The Gordon Arcade back in the '70s, it was a rooming house had turned into a charge by day, week, month rooming house for people to, you know, have a room to stay in. It was filthy in here. It was unkept. A lot of the buildings around here were like that. No new businesses coming in, and they just boarded them up and let them sit there. And that's when Detroit Shoreway came in. And. Detroit Shoreway was founded by concerned residences. Residents, sorry! That they didn't want to see these buildings go into such a deteriorated shape that they couldn't be saved. So we've went from that to almost 30 years later of it. The majority of our older buildings that could be saved and at least kept up are being kept up.

Josh Dorsey [00:16:33] You mentioned that the Community Development Organization was founded by residents in Detroit Shoreway. How, how did that, you know, come about? Was it just, you know, meeting from a group of people said, you know, we need to do something or was it, you know, kind of a more timetable process?

Donna Belles [00:17:00] I think it started out as just concerned citizens headstrong. That said, we need to do something. And then turned into a small grassroots project of making sure that the neighborhood, at least at that point, was at least not deteriorate anymore. You know, and over the years, Detroit Shoreway role has grown, no doubt. But the beginning was was to save the neighborhood, to save the culture of the neighborhood. Even though the buildings are very important and Franklin Boulevard has gorgeous homes. Yes. You want to save the buildings, but you need to save the culture within and behind them.

Josh Dorsey [00:17:47] What. How do they. How are they funded? Is it, you know, private donations? Is it from different churches in the area?

Donna Belles [00:17:53] As far as Detroit Shoreway?

Josh Dorsey [00:17:56] Yeah.

Donna Belles [00:17:56] Detroit Shoreway is basically funded from different grants from the city of Cleveland. Excuse me, through the Economic Development Department, through the city of Cleveland. Part of that part of the money comes from there. The councilman, whoever it might be at that point, every councilman, I should say, of the ward has money allocated to him for the neighborhood. And he gives it as he sees the need for different community neighborhood developments. Because with the ward, it's not just Detroit Shoreway. There are other community development areas that he might also want to give money to for that. But also state of Ohio funding, federal funding. A lot of the different grants for economic development. We. Most of our money comes from grants. We have to just keep pushing to make sure that we keep the money.

Josh Dorsey [00:19:05] You mentioned that your organization was founded to kind of preserve culture in your... Is there any relation between the Detroit Shoreway Organization and kind of the Cultural Gardens on the East Side?

Donna Belles [00:19:21] I don't know. I'm not sure on that.

Josh Dorsey [00:19:22] How long have you been involved in all of the?

Donna Belles [00:19:28] Detroit Shoreway? Oh. Been a while. I think it's 17 years that I've been on the board. Now.

Josh Dorsey [00:19:38] Okay.

Donna Belles [00:19:39] And as a residential board member.

Josh Dorsey [00:19:39] How did you become involved? I mean, what I mean is how do you become. How do you become a member of the Detroit Shoreway Development Organization?

Donna Belles [00:19:50] Okay, anyone that's a resident could become a member of as far as, you know, an official member. You sign up to be a board member, a board trustee, you are run for office. And the officers or I should say the board is elected annually at their three-year term mark. Not all of us. Our terms are do not expire all on the same year. Mine expires next year with probably three other board members. And then the next year other ones. So we're on like a rotating term. If you understand what I mean. But it is annually, too, that the ones that come up for election that year are elected in February at our annual meeting.

Josh Dorsey [00:20:42] How does it come to be determined what, you know, what the organization focuses on at a particular time? Is there. You mentioned annual meetings. Is there votes at the meeting or is it all decided by board members?

Donna Belles [00:20:53] It's the majority is. Let me go backwards instead of forwards. The only thing decided at the annual meeting could be that you would put to a vote of the whole membership. By law, changes, or amendments. The election of the officers or anything that you see a majority vote. A need for a majority vote. And that would that only happens once a year. Then there is the board of directors or board of trustees that govern the staff of Detroit Shoreway, and we stay out of the day-to-day dealings of that. Our role is more so to as an overview and we do ultimately have to approve all resolutions. But, I want to say more than half of them go through the executive committee of the board first, which has usually three to four members on it, so that all the work that needs to be done is done in the committee before it comes to the full board. But yes, they all require resolutions or, you know, approval.

Josh Dorsey [00:22:08] Growing up in the area and being here pretty much your whole life, do you, do you see a certain part of the Detroit Shoreway area that should be concentrated on more so than others? Do you have any opinions on on what any pros or cons about what the program is currently, currently doing?

Donna Belles [00:22:30] You mean as far as Detroit Shoreway doing?

Josh Dorsey [00:22:32] Yeah.

Donna Belles [00:22:32] Or just. Okay. The the economics and the building of things. I think they've done pretty well. I mean, yes, would I like to see certain things done. Yes. But that's being, you know, in your mind you're going geez I wish they would have done this instead of this, you know. They've done very well on Franklin Boulevard and Detroit Avenue, even though there's, you know, little things they could still do from doing those two main streets. Now they are, focusing more on side streets that are main streets, if you know what I mean, like West 65th is a main street. West 85th is a main street. West 45th is a main street. So instead of looking at the streets that run east to west, the large avenues, they're looking at the other ones now and renovating on those. So they're trying to spread what they're doing out and around the neighborhood. And I think they're doing a pretty good job.

Josh Dorsey [00:23:39] What. What in fact, exactly do they renovate? Do they, do they renovate, you know, the residential dwellings? Do they, you know, give loans for new businesses coming in?

Donna Belles [00:23:49] No, we don't give loans. That's the... Well, I should say Detroit Shoreway itself does not give loans, but we are usually a partner or oversee the renovation or the building of new houses or old older houses in the neighborhood. We're involved because we want it to be a certain. We want it to fit into the neighborhood, but that doesn't mean that we don't. We have grants for low income housing. Middle-income family housing. So it's not like we're grabbing all the money out there and applying for grants that are all for low-income housing. We try to do a variety so that the neighborhood stays diverse. You know, I. We have the Painters Lofts that are on 85th right now. So it's just I think we're trying to just make sure that the quality of life that we want here is achieved and maintained. And that doesn't mean by how much money you make. It means by, you know, being part of the neighborhood and and growing in the neighborhood.

Josh Dorsey [00:25:08] Does any of the road renovation is it done by is any of it done by private companies that live in here, live in the area? You know, private construction companies, to you know.

Donna Belles [00:25:20] I'm not sure. Yeah. I'm not sure if they live in the area. But I know a lot of different grants and fundings have to be bid out also. And certain banks take on renovation and economic loans and other banks don't. I don't know a lot about the financial like that. I do know that a lot of people that have might have had some type of connection with the building contractors. I don't want to say eventually some of them have moved into the neighborhood. They've seen what a nice building it is in a nice neighborhood and they've moved in. That does happen. If that's what you mean, you know, it might be that they didn't start out living here and the the owner of the company doesn't actually live here. But maybe someone that was involved in one of the projects liked it so well or liked a certain area of the neighborhood that they moved in. Yes.

Josh Dorsey [00:26:20] Okay, we are kind of back tracking here but you mentioned you are a librarian. Where?

Donna Belles [00:26:23] I'm actually a librarian assistant. I'm in school for my MLS. At the Walz Branch Library. That's right up the street across from the old St. John's.

Josh Dorsey [00:26:32] Okay. Has that, has that been renovate by?

Donna Belles [00:26:36] No, it was. No, no. It was built back in 1967. So it's actually a newer facility as far as libraries go.

Josh Dorsey [00:26:55] Is there anything you want to add, anything that?

Donna Belles [00:27:00] Do you want stories of the neighborhood of growing up or of?

Josh Dorsey [00:27:04] Yeah, I mean, just. Just on, you know, your childhood experience living in Cleveland, living in the area. Maybe on the school.

Donna Belles [00:27:19] Okay.

Josh Dorsey [00:27:20] Good. What was the conditions of the schools good?

Donna Belles [00:27:22] Brand new school loved it. We were. The street that I live on, West 64th, I'd like to talk about that a little bit. It's feels to me. It's a unique street within the neighborhood because it's like it's like sometimes walking into another world. Okay, West 65th is a main street. So it does go through changes. And whatever changes happen show they're very apparent on a main street. West 64th has always been a quiet street. As a child, I didn't realize that, you know, is just where I lived. But now when you go on to West 64th, I mean, most of the houses are well-kept, always have been. And that is due to part of the fact is that the people that have lived there, they don't sell to outsiders. And I don't mean that in a bad way. You know, they don't say, well, I'm not selling to this person. What it is, is it is mostly Romanian. So they'll sell to other Romanians or they won't put their house up for sale by a realtor. They will first ask their family and their friends, you know, about purchasing the house. So in doing that, they have. How would you say they have controlled the environment of the street. You know, not knowingly doing it, as far as saying we don't want anybody here because new people do move in. But the majority of the people that live there now, half of the street have had relatives live there, direct relatives, or cousins that came over from Romania that needed a place to stay. And then they bought the house. They lived there ten, fifteen years. Their family grew. They moved on. But they might have a cousin that was starting a family and would buy the house. So it has stayed very. How would you put it? Continuous. I don't know how else to put it. Not a lot of rental property on that street. So it's just it's like taking that street. That street almost doesn't belong to this neighborhood. Twenty years ago belongs to it now. But back when bad things were happening in every neighborhood where 64th was very stable. You didn't have renters that were ruining, you know, the what the old people were saying? You know, you're running on my grass. You're ruining my grass all this stuff, you know. I did that as a kid. But, you know, it was very stable, very good street to grow up. I mean, I raised my kids on it. It's how I looked at it, you know. And I'm glad to give them some kind of basis. I mean, that's home. You know, that house is home. That that house has been in my family since 1957 when they bought it. I think it was 54, 57. I mean did it start out like that as a child? No. I thought I'd move away, you know, and all that. But it didn't, it ended up to where I bought the house. No one else was going to live in that house. That was my family house. You know, my sister, she lives on 67th. But that's just a house to her on 67th that she bought. Her home is where she grew up. And a lot of people from the neighborhood feel like that. That's the difference with that.

Josh Dorsey [00:31:13] Would you like to keep keep the house in, you know, in like a family tradition like your kids living in it?

Donna Belles [00:31:15] Yep. I told my kids. I told my children that I am going to put it in my will that they cannot sell the house. That they have to. And they can't rent it out to just whoever and move away. It has to be taken care of. And I mean, I have a regular what you would call colonial house that was built. It's nothing extravagant that's like on Franklin Boulevard or anything. But it's a nice home. And my fear was that if something happened, happened to my myself or my husband before my children were ready to settle down. You know, at 19, they don't think about, oh, this is house. They think, oh, if I sell the house, I could go get that car that I wanted. So I would rather them always have a home. So, yes, very selfish on that. They are not allowed to sell the house.

Josh Dorsey [00:32:29] Is there anything that you would like to add Mark?

Mark Souther [00:32:32] Sure I can, I can jump in. Feel free to jump back in yourself as well, as you think of things. Tell us both a little bit more about the neighborhood around where you grew up, all your memories of it as a child and perhaps some of the businesses that were within walking distance.

Donna Belles [00:32:48] Okay.

Mark Souther [00:32:48] That you have fond memories of?

Donna Belles [00:32:51] Oh, yeah. While we used to walk to school up to 73rd to Watterson-Lake School and going past there. This is really kind of hilarious, I guess, where the McDonald's is on West 70th that was built probably when I was like 6 years old. There is no such thing as fast food in this neighborhood. And there are these two huge old houses up there that they were actually kind of like up on the hill. There was like a long front yard before the hill or before the house, you know. So as a little child, they looked kind of like gloomy and booming up there, you know, and you scared the heck out of us. You'd have to go past those two houses to go to school. Well, here they build a McDonald's there. And I remember for the first two years that that McDonald's was there, you had to stand in line for about, oh, god, half hour to get something to eat. I mean, and it was booming. You know, all the time. So that was the first fast food place in this walking distance area for that. And let's see. West 65th and Detroit, that at one time at least me growing up, it had eight bars on each. You could. Around that corner, that intersection, there were at least eight taverns and you'd have winos sitting out front. And I know that sounds kind of unusual and weird in a way, but. They didn't. They were part of the scenery, I guess you'd say. And they were nice to us as kids. During, you know, as a few years went by, the bars got a little worse. Little, you know, harsher crowd. And then they eventually got closed down back in I want to say 1977. Most of them got closed down. A lot of their liquor licenses were pulled because at that point it had went. It was just very bad. As far as fights, drugs, gangs, stuff like that. But when I was growing up, it wasn't like that, you know, it was my dad was at the City Grill, you know. And it was like if my mom needed something seven o'clock at night when I was real little, she'd have me and my sisters and run to City Grill. Tell your dad I need four dollars and then run to Leader Drug right on the corner and get some milk. And you thought nothing of it. Why? Because we weren't staying in the bar. We went to get her dad get, you know, a few dollars off of him and cross the street to go to Leader Drug to get some milk. So, I mean, it was. It was a safer time or it seemed to be I should say, should say a safer time. You know, as I ran the streets as a child, as far as you knew, what backyards to cut over, which ones, not to where your friends lived. You know, it was okay to walk down the park with your friends. It was okay to do all these different things because there were so many people in the neighborhood that knew who you were that if you did something bad. By the time you got home, your mom was waiting on you. I mean, there was never the, you know, if you did something bad, you knew your mom already knew and you knew you're going to get it when you get home. So there were always the people, the older people were always looking out for you. Of course, as a child, your going, oh God, I wish they would mind their own business, you know. But when you look back, it's actually a very good thing that I was like that.

Mark Souther [00:36:51] Did your street have much ethnic, ethnic diversity when you were living there would you say?

Donna Belles [00:36:56] Romanian and Italian. Yeah. Two-thirds Romanian and Italian and there was a few. We had a few Native American families that lived there when I grew up there, and Polish, I want to say Eastern European, European descent. That's probably a better way to put

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