Tag Archives: california

Changes coming to ‘senior shuttle’ in West Sacramento

NEWS-LEDGER — DEC 10, 2014 —

By Al Zagofsky
Correspondent

West Sac’s Senior Shuttle passengers are anticipating changes to the service, with the changes scheduled for review and approval at the Dec. 17 West Sacramento Council meeting.

Senior Shuttle rider Evelyn Vannoy is helped onto the United Christian Center paratransit van by driver Jonathan Bosco. The Center does not plan to renew its contract to continue the service. (Photo by Al Zagofsky/News-Ledger)

Senior Shuttle rider Evelyn Vannoy is helped onto the United Christian Center paratransit van by driver Jonathan Bosco. The Center does not plan to renew its contract to continue the service. (Photo by Al Zagofsky/News-Ledger)

Currently, West Sac and the United Christian Center partner to provide door-to-door shuttle service for seniors and disabled to the Recreation Center on Wednesdays for  knitting and crocheting, and on Thursdays for Bingo; for two monthly shopping trips, and to the ‘Commission on Agin’g meetings. The round trip fare’s normal price of $3.00 costs qualified riders $1.50, with the additional $1.50 subsidized by the city of West Sacramento.

West Sac’s contract with the United Christian Center is ending, with the Center indicating that they do not plan to renew; and further, plan to withdraw from their transit operations.

On Dec. 3, members of the existing ridership attended a meeting at the Recreation Center sponsored by the Parks and Recreation Department.

At the meeting, Erik Reitz, Associate Transportation Planner for Yolo County Transportation District said that existing riders of the current Senior Shuttle can use the existing Yolo Bus scheduled and Special Paratransit Service in the city of West Sacramento.

It has been proposed that the fares for qualified riders remain the same when they do this, with the City of West Sacramento continuing to contribute $1.50 for the paratransit service.

The city council will take up the matter on its Dec. 17 agenda.

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Hanging out in a cemetery can be fun

NEWS-LEDGER — DEC 10, 2014 —

I have a strange little confession to make. When I need to get away from everything and everyone for a few days, I often jump in my little truck and head down into Southern California, often ending up somewhere out in the desert, although usually near wonderfully civilized places like Palm Springs. And on the way, especially while I am in and around the Los Angeles area, I have been known to stop off at some of the more famous cemeteries down there that are the final resting places for many of the television and movie stars of my youth. Anyway, I happened to mention this to a friend of mine the other day and I could see by the expression on his face that he was a little worried about me.

“Maybe you have just reached that age where death is becoming a little more real to you,” he suggested.

BY DARYL FISHER, News-Ledger Features Editor

BY DARYL FISHER, News-Ledger Features Editor

“No, I have always liked cemeteries, even when I was young, especially historic ones. And the one we have right over the bridge in Sacramento is a great place to hang out. All kinds of interesting people are buried there, including a bunch of California governors, Civil War veterans, quite a few of the famous Crocker family, and even Alexander Hamilton’s son, who died in one of those cholera epidemics that used to be really common in this area back in the 1840s and 1850s. And if you go down to Southern California there are a bunch of Forest Lawn cemeteries that are the final resting place of lots of famous people like Bette Davis, Lucille Ball, Buster Keaton, Stan Laurel, Ricky Nelson, Steve Allen, Charles Laughton, Michael Jackson, and the list goes on and on. Oh, and another really interesting cemetery down there is Los Angeles Cemetery. That’s where Marilyn Monroe is buried. Did you know that the bid on e-Bay for the empty crypt just above hers has now reached $4.6 million dollars?”
“Really?” said my friend, not knowing how to change the subject. “Well, I guess since most of the old movie stars lived and worked in the Los Angeles area, it’s only natural that they died and were buried there, too.”
“One of the most interesting cemeteries I ever visited was a place called Desert Memorial Park,” I continued, “which is down around Palm Springs. I stopped by there once to check out William Powell’s grave – you know, the guy who starred in all of those great old `Thin Man’ movies – and guess who I stumbled across in the process?”
“Who?” asked my friend very reluctantly.
“Frank Sinatra – Old Blue Eyes himself! And I was surprised by what an unpretentious gravesite he had, just a flat marker on the ground with his name, the dates of his birth and death, and an old song lyric of his — `The best is yet to come’ – chiseled into the stone. And did you know that he was buried with a bottle of Jack Daniels and a pack of Camel cigarettes?”
“No, I didn’t know that.”
“But the one grave I’ve always wanted to visit was Charlie Chaplin’s, and you know what happened to him, don’t you?”
“No, what?”
“Well, Charlie died on Christmas Day in 1977 at the age of 88, and his family buried him in a really nice cemetery in Switzerland, not far from where he had lived for many years after America wouldn’t let  him back into the country because of his politics. But a couple of months later his body was dug up and stolen from the graveyard and the thieves wanted $600,000 from his grieving wife before they would give it back.”
“Really?” asked my friend, suddenly interested in our conversation for the first time. “So what did his wife do?”
“Well, she told them that she wouldn’t pay the ransom, because Charlie would have considered the whole thing ridiculous and even humorous, so the thieves then threatened the lives of some of their eight children, all of whom Charlie had fathered after his 54th birthday, which was his age when they got married.”
“But the family did get poor Charlie’s body back, didn’t they?” asked my friend with interest.
“Yes, but only after a five or six week investigation by the local police who finally found out that a couple of out-of-work auto mechanics from Bulgaria of all places had dug up Charlie and re-buried him in an old cornfield about a mile from his home. So the authorities arrested the thieves and went out and got Charlie back and returned him to his original resting place. But this time they buried him in a very heavy cement grave to prevent any future theft attempts.”

“Wow, that’s quite a story,” said my friend. “And I guess that’s probably at the heart of why you like to visit graveyards, isn’t it? You know, the fact that every life has its own story, and you can stand there and think about the great life that someone you really admired has lived.”
“Well,” I admitted, “I usually just like to stand there and whisper to myself something like, `Even though you got to be rich and famous and I didn’t, you are gone, and I’m still here’!”

Copyright News-Ledger 2014

West Sac celebrates tree-lighting

(Courtesy of Meaghan Pierelli, West Sac. Chamber of Commerce)

(Courtesy of Meaghan Pierelli, West Sac. Chamber of Commerce)

NEWS-LEDGER — DEC 10, 2014

Among the entertainers at Friday evening’s Holiday Tree Lighting party were members of River City High School’s Advanced Vocal Ensemble, shown here at the railings above the crowd.
Hundreds of citizens gathered to meet ceremony and watch the lights go on at the tree outside city hall, 1110 West Capitol Ave.
Copyright News-Ledger 2014

West Sac woman is champion for California’s senior citizens

CHARLOTTE DORSEY By Al Zagofsky/News-Ledger

CHARLOTTE DORSEY
By Al Zagofsky/News-Ledger

NEWS-LEDGER — DEC 3, 2014 —

By Al Zagofsky
News-Ledger Correspondent

For three days in October, 120 members of the California Senior Legislature met in the State Capitol building to propose legislation regarding senior citizens at both state and federal levels. Charlotte Dorsey of West Sacramento attended as an Assembly Member representing Yolo County.

“I think the California Senior Legislature is extremely important,” Dorsey said. “I heard a quote the other day, It was by a radio personality, he said, ‘Discrimination against seniors is the only remaining acceptable discrimination.’ I believe that is true.”

“Until you become of that age, you do not realize how differently seniors are treated many times,” she continued, “and how the existing services are not necessarily geared for seniors.”

“There are a lot of ways this happens. From the way that people communicate with seniors to the kinds of laws that are put in place that may or may not include support for seniors.”

“Everything from putting in sidewalks and making sure that the handicap ramps are kept in working order—so that when people go from a sidewalk to a street, there isn’t a pothole in the bottom of a ramp.”

The California Senior Legislature was established by state law to help preserve and enhance the quality of life for older Californians and their families, and is primarily funded by the Code 402 checkoff on the California State Income Tax form.

Forty Senior Senators and eighty Senior Assembly members are selected in elections in 33 planning service areas as established by the federal Older Americans Act of 1965. Area 4/Yolo County, is represented by Senior Senators: Gloria Plasencia – Foresthill, and Lola Young – Sacramento; and Senior Assembly Members: Seth Brunner – Davis, Charlotte Dorsey – West Sacramento, Pam Epley – Arcata, and Lynne Farrell – Lincoln.

Dorsey first became acquainted with the CSL early last year through her involvement with the Area 4 Agency on Aging Advisory Council. She and fellow Assembly Member Seth Brunner were appointed to represent Yolo County currently on the Council. The Council elected Dorsey as a CSL Senior Assembly Member.

“The California Senior Legislature was proposed in 1979, and its first session was convened in 1981,” Dorsey explained. “You have to be over 60, and be elected by your peers.”

“There are limited voices for seniors in the state and in the country,” she noted. “There are not many like the CSL—and it’s all volunteers.”

“Without the CSL, there would be fewer voices for seniors,” Dorsey concluded. “They would be forgotten.”

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Copyright News-Ledger 2014