Monday, July 7, 2008


Clipping in archives of The Museum of the San Fernando Valley 2008 (click on photo to enlarge)

In 1967, the Burbank Junior Chamber of Commerce designed Jerry as an "Outstanding Young Teacher." The award was presented by James Nivette. The award was a surprise to both Jerry and Jim. Nivette had only been told that he was presenting the award to a teacher at Burbank High School and the director of the school district's new continuation school.
Delta Chapter Brothers, Jim Nivette and Horace Seeley-Brown III both pledge Sigma Alpha Epsilon at the University of Southern California, where they became close friends with the Phi Delts in the national fraternity.
Jerry Fecht and Jim Nivette had not seen each other more than a few times after Jerry's graduation. So, the award was a double pleasure for both.
After Jerry earned his doctorate, he visited Jim Nivette, where he was in practice in Santa Cruz. To Jerry's profound shock, he later learned that Jim had been accused of murdering his wife and had fled the country. Years earlier Jim and Jerry discussed a river in France flowing from the Vogues Mountains, called La Fecht.
Jim fled the United States, after abandoning his little son in the San Francisco Airport. He disappeared somewhere in France. An international search ensued. Eventually he was found in the tiny village of Munster on the Fecht River in Alsace. It turned out that his family owned a condo there. France refused to extradite Nivette, because of America's death penalty. Eventually, he and a notorious killer named Einhorn were sent to the USA with the agreement of life in prison without possibility of parole. Jim is serving a life sentence in a California prison. (Folsom, I think.)

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