Forty years ago Sunday, Richard Challis led a march of about 200 dog owners and their pets at Main Beach to protest a City Council ban on dogs on Laguna's beaches and parks.
The council didn't really stand a chance when Challis and Arnold Hano showed up at a meeting with a crowd of supporters and petitions against the ban, with signatures gathered at the demonstration.
"People were lined up outside of City Hall," Challis said. "The crowd was so big the meeting was moved to Laguna Beach High School."
Artist Roger Kuntz was among the protestors, hoisting a sign that read "Dog is God spelled backwards."
Challis' son, David, and daughter, Diane Challis Davy, also participated.
"My brother and I both marched in the parade with posters we had made," Challis Davy said. "We had this little Scottish terrier that we really loved."
The protest was not Challis' only foray into community affairs. Challis was active in Motivated Museum Members, which fought against the merger of the Newport Harbor and Laguna Beach museums and eventually annulled what locals considered a marriage made in hell.