Community shows support at Hodges children’s funeral

Community shows support at Hodges children’s funeral

By Michele Townsend People say that death is a part of life, but people shouldn’t outlive their children! This is a heart-wrenching statement that far too many people have had to live More »

Woodland Man Graduates from Mental Health Court

Woodland Man Graduates from Mental Health Court

Yolo County District Attorney Jeff Reisig announced today that on Monday September 25, 2017, 41-year-old Davis resident Gary Wight successfully graduated from Mental Health Court in Department Four of the Yolo County More »

Scripture, Service, and Being Sikh in West Sacramento

Scripture, Service, and Being Sikh in West Sacramento

The soaring white domes of the Sikh Temple of Sacramento, or “Gurdwara Sahib”, are a familiar sight to many West Sacramento residents. But for West Sacramento resident Parveen Kaur Tumber, the temple More »


West Sac heroes earn their capes: Senator Dr. Richard Pan’s “Unsung Heroes” celebrated with awards at the State Capitol

By Michele Townsend

20170926_110440Twelve recipients (two of them from West Sacramento!) were awarded their hero capes and senatorial certificates in a small gathering on Tuesday, Sept. 26 at the State Capitol.
Senator Dr Richard Pan, with the assistance of Senator Kevin McCarty, called up each person that has received the Unsung Hero Award for each of the last 12 months. Pan explained why he chose each person and some of the wonderful things that they do for their communities. The heroes then stepped up for photos, handshakes, a beautiful gold embossed certificate… and their red, satin, hero cape…. complete with the “Unsung Hero” logo on it!
Pan explained that “it all started in 2015 when those four college students stopped a terrorist from shooting up a train in France. We got to talking about them being heroes, and how many people in our own community that, on an on-going basis, that really do so much to help our community and bring us closer together.” He wanted to highlight their stories and inspire other people to follow in their footsteps. He said, “The Unsung Hero Program is to shine the spotlight on those wonderful people that do so many great things for their neighborhoods and communities… often without any recognition.” He went on to say, “Through your work, your hobby, your passion… you are making a profound impact. These are the people, along with the people supporting these people, that make Sacramento such an amazing place!”
McCarty reiterated this train of thought when he said, “It is true that we often recognize heroes on the sports fields, heroes in life, and box office…and they do call us honorable…but ordinary people doing extraordinary things… throughout history… those are the ones who have made the biggest difference!”
Among the 12 recipients are two shining West Sacramento residents. Jose (Joe or Jojo) Ramirez, a local youth umpire and referee who is known through sports by several generations throughout the Sacramento area. He is encouraging to kids, and keeping the games fun!
Additionally, Leah Nelson, now 11 years old, was chosen as an Unsung Hero for starting “BecuzIcare” bracelets. These bracelets are handed out for a simple reason: to brighten someone’s day. She simply hands one to someone who looks like they could use some cheering up, and asks that when you see someone who might needs a boost of happiness to please pass it on to them, and ask them to do the same.
Leah told the News-Ledger, “I feel excited that I’m making a difference and that I’m impacting the community.” Leah also has a GoFundMe account on Facebook at HYPERLINK “″ if you would like to help her continue to spread kindness.
The remaining Unsung Heroes recognized included: Kay Temple Kirk –Program Manager for Gender Health Center, Chariss Fong – Teacher at Sacramento Food Bank and Family Services, Carol McNerney – volunteer at Hart Senior Center, Ron Marshall – Volunteer for Sacramento Veteran’s Resources, Shonna McDaniels – Founder of Sojourner Truth Multicultural Art Museum, Dino Alleger – Children’s Bike Programs including safety, repair and events, Teresa Kahl – volunteer docent, ambassador and horticulture assistant for the Sacramento Zoo, Yannina Casillas – advocate with Council on American-Islamic Relations, Jesse Archer – Youth Program Coordinator at the Sacramento LGBT Community Center, and Dr. Vernon Walton – retired pediatrician.
Ramirez summed it up nicely when he said, in part, “I was honored to be among so many great recipients… especially Leah because she is such a young great community legend!”
Congratulations heroes!!
Thank you for being the change that you wish to see in the world.

River City High School Athlete of the Month – September

Name: Jonathan Miles
Sport: Water Polo
Years Played: 4
College Choices: 1. University of the Pacific; 2. Sacramento State
Career Plans: Teacher/Coach

Name: Kelly Ridel
Sport: Water Polo
Years Played: 7
College Choices: 1. University of Southern California; 2. Cal Tech
Career Plans: Engineering

Native West Sacramento woman celebrates her 90th birthday with friends

By Jan Dalske for the News Ledger

Last Saturday at the Pheasant Club, a small group of about forty close friends gathered to celebrate a 90th Birthday for Rita Moore. They all really enjoyed the party and told her how much they all loved her and her great attitude and sense of humor and joy of living. One guest, who is 91, encouraged Rita to celebrate their centennial birthdays together in a few years.
The guestbook was filled with good wishes. One friend told her that they will always be friends. Some had known Rita for fifty years or more, and they had not seen each other since grammar or high school. They love Rita’s warm personality and positive attitude. One friend drove all the way from Chico to celebrate with Rita and her friends.
Another friend told Rita that her parent’s home was a sanctuary for them as kids and that their parents knew they would not get in any trouble spending them there.
The birthday “girl” was a local resident, Rita Strojan Moore. Her parents came from Slovenia and settled in the West Sacramento area in 1926. Rita was born in 1927 and was raised in Broderick.
When I first met Rita Moore, I was sure that she and I were about the same age. I am closing in on seventy. Imagine my surprise when she assured me that she would be celebrating her 90th Birthday within a few days. Over the timespan of those ninety years, Rita has watched the sleepy little town of her birth grow into a thriving city.
Rita attended Washington Elementary School. At the age of nine Rita rode on a Budweiser wagon at the old California State Fair Horse Show. Rita loved horses and, when she was just twelve, she had a horse named Buck, whose color was a buckskin beige. Her family kept the horse in the backyard of their house which was located on 6th and G Streets, where they had two adjoining lots. They eventually sold Buck to Paul Palmedesi, the owner of the Pheasant Club.
Since there was no local high school, Rita was a “River Rat” at the high school in Woodland. When she attended high school she had to take a bus to Woodland with all of the other teenagers who lived in the area. In her high school years she played women’s softball.
She loved to dance and was expert at doing the jitterbug. She was active in many different sports and played basketball, baseball, badminton, and volleyball. She played girls softball after high school for two years at the park on 10th and P Streets in Sacramento.
In 1946 the home that her family lived in had no indoor toilet facilities, and they had to use an outhouse located in their backyard. She has watched the City of West Sacramento grow into a city that has much more to offer local families now than it did it 1927.
After she graduated from high school in 1945, she was married in August of 1946 to a Broderick boy, Jim Moore. She soon started working for the Department of Forestry, staying with them for six years until she quit that job after giving birth to her only son, Kenny, in September of 1951. She stayed at home for few years and was a housewife and mother.
She loved to play pool, and was a member of five different bowling leagues that met at the El Rancho. She was an avid water skier. She enjoyed skiing in the old Lake Washington as well as the river in Sacramento. She and her first husband were members of the Washington Outboard Club. They used a 35 HP Roy Rogers Yellow Jacket boat, which was guaranteed not to tip over.
Rita and her husband raised one son, Kenny, who was a Cub Scout, and Rita served as the Den Mother for their group. She enjoyed camping out and spending time with the boys. When she was younger and her son, Kenny, was just three years old, the family usually spent the weekends and summer vacations camping. They did not use tents, and just spent the nights on sleeping bags and air mattresses under the open night sky.
Her son and her husband were both graduates of Our Lady of Grace School.
Rita had taken typing classes in high school with hopes of being a private secretary someday. She eventually worked as a medical transcriber, having studied shorthand and office practice. During her working career, Rita was an office manager for an Ortho Pediatrics Office in Carmichael from 1972 to 1985.
Her mother and her aunt were known as the two most beautiful ladies in Broderick. With their brown hair and matching eyes they were always noticed. As teenagers, Madeline and Marie had attended high school at the orphanage in Grass Valley.
She has outlived three husbands, and, most weekends, they liked to invite other couples over to their home to play Pinochle and have cocktails. House parties were always fun to plan for their friends. In between the marriages she enjoyed an active social life.
Rita has spent the last 29 years in her beautiful and comfortable home which is located in a West Sacramento mobile home park. She has a few hobbies that keep her interested and happily occupied. She loves gardening and her outdoor porch is covered with many thriving plants. She also spends hours working on her quilting projects.
Politics is one of her other interests and she is an avid viewer of MSNBC and keeps up on the current issues. She also likes to watch mysteries, love stories, and historical related films.
Rita had one grandson, Josh, who passed away in 2006. I am sure that he loved listening to his grandmother tell him her stories about the good old days in West Sacramento and how much that things have changed over the many years that she has lived there. Not very many local residents have memories back to 1927, but Rita does, and she will be happy to share them with just about anyone who asks.

West Sacramento’s first mayor to discuss city’s formation at public library event

The history of the birth of the official incorporated city of West Sacramento will be recalled and revealed by its first mayor, Mike McGowan, at a special community event on Sunday, Sept. 17. It is scheduled from 3 to 5 p.m. in the Community Room of the Turner Library at 1212 Merkley Ave. in West Sacramento and is open to the public, free of charge.
Referring to West Sacramento’s early days as a new city, McGowan remembers himself and other newly-elected officials, who wondered, once they had a brand new city, “What they were going to do with it?” He will discuss the responsibility for developing it, and promises to “tell where all the bodies are buried.”
In addition to the talk, the afternoon begins with music from a small combo, featuring McGowan on percussion, and Cindy Tuttle on vocals, as part of the group. Tuttle was the first female mayor of West Sacramento. Refreshments will be served during the program.
The event is the fourth in a special speakers’ series, sponsored by the Friends of Yolo County Archives. The series celebrates the 30th anniversary of the Yolo County Archives, which operates an office and preservation facility in Woodland. The office houses historic records, photos, newspaper accounts, and other archival memorabilia of all kinds. It is open to the public by appointment on Tuesdays from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. and Thursdays from noon to 4 p.m. the archives facility is located at 226 Buckeye St. in Woodland. The office can be reached by phone at 530-666-8010 and by email at
Yolo County Archives maintains a website at An additional website for the Friends organization is: or