Tag Archives: west sacramento local news

Remembering John Ohlson, a good citizen

FROM THE NEWS-LEDGER — NOV 28, 2012 —

COLUMN BY DARYL FISHER

  Note: Longtime West Sacramento resident John Ohlson died last week at the age of 97. He lived a rich and rewarding life, spoke numerous languages, saw the good in everyone, and was always interested in everything that was going on around him. He loved the written word and his West Sacramento home of more than half-a-century was always cluttered with books, newspapers and magazines. He was kind, gentle, a reservoir of knowledge on countless subjects, and he will be greatly missed by all those who knew, respected and loved him.

  The following “About Town” article about John and his beloved wife, Grace, written before her death in 2000, is reprinted below in his memory. John and Grace were a loving and energetic team who together made West Sacramento a much better place to live, and he would not want to be remembered in any other way.

JOHN OHLSON in 2007 (courtesy photo)

John Ohlson’s Swedish parents raised him in the American Midwest, where he graduated from Northwestern University with a degree in psychology. Grace Kneedler spent her youth in the San Francisco Bay Area and received her degree in political science from the University of California at Berkeley.  While they were doing their graduate work in the late 1930s (John at Stanford and Grace at Berkeley) they met at a small lunch party arranged by mutual friends.

“Grace was very bright and interesting,” recalled John.  “She was also cute and had a sweet disposition and I liked her right away.”

When World War Two came along, John was drafted into Civilian Public Service and soon found himself stationed at the Duke University hospital in North Carolina.

“Grace and I kept in touch through letters for quite some time,” remembered John, “and in 1945, we were married in Chicago.”

After the war, John took a teaching position at Duke University, Grace went to work for the Tuberculosis Society, and they also began raising a family.

“By about 1950,” said John, “Grace really wanted to get herself and our children away from the steamy heat of North Carolina, and when a civil service position opened up in Marysville, I took it and we moved back to the West Coast.  Less than a year later, a similar job became available in Sacramento.  We settled down in West Sacramento where everything was still affordable and we have been here ever since.”

John and Grace are probably best known in West Sacramento for their many years of very active participation in local politics.

“I guess my interest in politics really began back in North Carolina when I was trying to help organize workers in the cotton mills of Durham,” said John.  “It was really hard to do, because back then, many of the wives didn’t think they should register to vote.  Believe it or not, they didn’t consider it lady-like, and they were also worried that their vote might cancel out their husband’s.”

John, who has been active in the Yolo County Democratic Central Committee for decades, says it’s actually Grace who is mostly responsible for their interest in local issues.

“Grace’s political activism goes all the way back to her father’s experiences as a union man,” said John.  “She learned at an early age that somebody has to look out for the average citizen and hold politicians accountable, because if you don’t, there’s no telling what those rascals will do.”

“I wonder if the community really knows just how valuable the Ohlsons have been to this area over the years,” said Art Edmonds, a former District One Supervisor and East Yolo’s first real political force.  “They’ve  played an important role in just about every problem we’ve faced, from getting us better water to drink to making sure we have a quality library. Grace has always been good at understanding issues and then tirelessly working to improve things.  She’s been somewhat controversial at times, but I think a lot of that is because she doesn’t back down when she thinks she’s right.  She’s truly been instrumental in moving our community forward and what I think really sets her apart is the fact that her involvement is never personal.  She doesn’t seek to benefit herself. She just wants to make West Sacramento a better place to live.”

 

BY DARYL FISHER, News-Ledger columnist

“Grace has been such a wonderful advocate for education,” said Linda Brooks, a former member of the Washington Unified School District Board of Trustees.  “She has served on both our board and on the Los Rios junior college board, and she is very knowledgeable about the numerous problems facing public education.  Her concern for the students of this area is genuine and she has worked very hard to improve their educational experience.  She can always be counted on to do the right thing and get other citizens involved, and I admire her tremendously.”

Yolo County Supervisor Mike McGowan, West Sacramento’s first mayor said, “First of all, let me say that I’ve lived next door to John and Grace for many years and they’re great neighbors.  Secondly, although Grace and I have been on the opposite sides of the political street quite a few times, I have a tremendous amount of respect for her.  She is extremely steadfast in her principles and is always a worthy adversary.  She is without question committed to her community and West Sacramento is better off because of it.”

“When I was young,” recalled Grace, “there were always wonderful discussions at our dinner table, often about politics, and I guess I have always had a passion for asking questions, especially after I learned how to get some of the answers.  So I guess if there’s any excuse for my actions, it’s because I was raised that way.  Plus of course it’s fun.”

  For relaxation, John and Grace like to read, visit their children and grandchildren, and also spend time high up in the mountains. Some of their happiest times have been spent together in and around such beautiful places as Tuolumne Meadows and Tioga Pass.

“We’re addicted to the high country,” said John, “and we try to get up into the Sierra as often as we can, usually twice every summer.”

John and Grace have two children, both of whom live in the Bay Area.  Their daughter, Mary, is employed by the Social Security Administration, and their son, Nils, works as a financial analyst for the University of California at Berkeley.  They have three grandchildren.

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Copyright News-Ledger 2012

RCHS volleyball presents annual awards

FROM THE NEWS-LEDGER — NOV 21, 2012 —

The River City High School Volleyball awards banquet was held last Wednesday, reports Coach Tammy Bacon.

 

LEFT to RIGHT: varsity volleyball MVP Michaela Faaifo, most inspirational player Arielle Pascua and most improved player Amanda McGuffey (courtesy photos)

Among the honorees for the 2012 squad:

Freshman awards went to Most Valuable Player, Amanda Tyson, and MVP & Most Inspirational Player , Jordan Criswell.

For the junior varsity, Most Valuable Player was  Taylor Jacky, Most Improved Playerwas Gabriella Mistler and the Coach’s Award went to Jenna Martinez.

For varsity:

Most Valuable Player: Michaela Faaifo

Most Inspirational Player: Arielle Pascua

Most Improved Player:  Amanda McGuffey

Tia McLeod, varsity All League honoree

Varsity leadership awards went to team captains Desiree Carbullido, Jaliyah Dramera and Kendra Thomas, and to team manager Arielle Pascua.

Varsity All League honorable mentions were Desiree Carbullido, Julie Staffler and Michaela Faaifo.

Tia McLeod was Varsity All League player.

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Copyright News-Ledger 2012

Train to help in emergencies

FROM THE NEWS-LEDGER —

The West Sacramento Fire Department is looking for volunteers to serve on its Certified Emergency Response Team, or CERT. Citizens are trained to assist in a disaster, learning skills such as fire safety, light search and rescue and disaster medical operations.

The next round of training begins Jan. 15. For information, call 617-4600 or www.wscert.org.

Copyright News-Ledger 2012

‘HEART OF THE CITY’: update on West Sacramento youth soccer& softball

FROM THE NEWS-LEDGER — NOV 28, 2012 —

BY DON SCHATZEL

West Sacramento: great athletes, great families, great community!

BY DON SCHATZEL (special to the News-Ledger)

Washington Unified School District youth soccer champions have been crowned and both boys and girls champs are from the same school. Elkhorn Village has swept.

The boys defeated Riverbank 3-2 and the girls upended previously undefeated Southport 2-1. Ashely Davis scored for Southport. Jessica Urbina, Mia Hendricks, and Yajaira Machuca were all standout players for Elkhorn, which finished the season with a 7-1 record.

Congratulations to the West Sac Soccer league teams competing in the upcoming District 6 Commissioners Cup. The defending champion U-19 (under age 19) team is coached by Sam Montoya. The U-16 (under 16) Hooligans, one of the two Hooligans teams participating at the Metro level this year, and U-12 Arsenal, last years finalist, will be there.

Teams from Carmichael, Elk Grove, Placerville, Nevada City, Rocklin, Roseville all compete.   The best of the best!!

Good luck to all!!

  Where have all the West Sac girls softball All Stars gone??

They’ve gone to “All World” tournaments in Elk Grove, Antelope, Carmichael, North Highlands, and to out-of-state tournaments. They are all playing on other teams — the Falcons, Adrenaline, Rapid, Sac Hitterz, West Sac Attack, All American.

Great players: Alexis Bennie, Morghan Smith, Alaina Guerra, Hannah McCann, Emily Schatzel, Jaz Hendrickson, Amarissa Medina, Anjelica Blackmer, Kylee Hall, Ally Snyder, Jordan Criswell.  Whenever I go out to a field there they are, and the fun part is when they play against each other so it looks like an older version of West Sac Girls Softball Little League at Alyce Norman Bryte playfields.

I guess this is good I can remember when they were 8 or 9 years old!!  There are a lot of teams in the Sacramento region  that would not be as good as they are without West Sac girls!

Congratulations, we are very proud of you!

A special thanks to Centennial Rotary for “kicking in” (pun intended) sponsoring the two Hooligans soccer teams this year by buying 16 soccer balls for games and practice. Without business support our community sports leagues would really struggle. I for one and many people I know will shop at businesses in town just because they sponsor youth sports. So thanks for your support.

Happy Holidays to all. Have a great and safe holiday season!

   (Editor’s note: we’ve also learned that the Michelin Soccer Progam and Radial Tire Center West Sacramento (operated by Kirby Pedroia) have donated $1,552 in funds and equipment to the West Sacramento Soccer Club. The tire shop is at 3111 West Capitol.)

  Do you like what you see here?

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  You can even try it for free for two months if you live in West Sacramento. Just send your name and mailing address to FreeTrial@news-ledger.com (offer open to new subscribers in West Sacramento ZIP codes 95691 & 95605).

Copyright News-Ledger 2012

‘Santa Run’: soon on a street near you

Santa atop a red "sleigh" in West Sacramento last year (News-Ledger photo by Eric Harding, www.ebharding.com)

FROM THE NEWS-LEDGER — NOV 21, 2012 —

The West Sacramento Fire Department and West Sacramento Firefighter’s Association are preparing for the annual “Santa Run” through West Sacramento.

With the help of many off-duty firefighter “elves,” Santa will be riding through various neighborhoods on an elaborately decorated fire truck “sleigh” and handing out candy canes purchased and donated by the West Sacramento Firefighter’s Association.  Additionally, Santa will have a pickup truck following his “sleigh” with helpers collecting any canned food donations for the needy.

The West Sacramento Firefighter’s Association would like to extend its thanks and appreciation to all those who come out to make canned food donations, as well as to Fire Chief Al Terrell and City Manager Martin Tuttle, for permitting the usage and decoration of the ladder truck for this annual tradition.

This year the Santa Run is scheduled for six nights beginning at 6:00 p.m. each night.  Santa will be in the following areas on these dates:

Monday, December 3rd: Broderick and Bryte area on some of the  following streets: Fremont, Douglas, Andrew, Sixth, Cummins, Anna, Kegle, Carrie, Lisbon,North Hobson, and Fourness.

  Tuesday, December 4th: North Business 80 on some of the  following streets: Pine, Palomar, Marigold, Doran, Garnet, Green meadow, Evergreen, Sycamore, Buckeye, Poplar, Proctor, Willow, Rockrose, Chaparral, Lilac, Manzanita, Washington, Oxford, Michigan, Maple, Walnut, Holly, Pecan.

Wednesday, December 5th: Old West Sacramento  following streets: Deerwood, Lakewood, Fernwood, Sonora, Haverhill, Meadow, Webster, Virginia, Alabama, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland.

Thursday, December 6th: Southport North East  following streets: Kinsington Aster, Manchester, Gateway, Sausalito, Sansome, Hearst, Randolf, Mojave, Merced, Rubicon, Ironwood, Spruce, Redwood, Alder, Lime wood, Almond, Peppertree, Peachtree.

Friday, December 7th: Southport South West Following streets:  Independence, Lagoon, Meadowlark, Starling, Sandpiper, Pheasant Hollow, Duet, Constitution, Summerfield, Jacquelyn, Janet, Betty, Shirley, Leslie, Diane, Brenda, Kathy, Nancy, Violet, Mareca, Teal, Canvasback, Pitzer, Allen.

Monday, December 10th: Southport West  (Bridgeway Island) including: Cayman, St. John, Martinique, St.croix, Haiti, Swan, Suisun, Ryer, Catalina, Santa Cruz, Half Moon Bay, Cooper, Fiji, Bowen, Solomon Stuart,Graham, San Salvador, Abaco, Bridgeway Lakes,  Henshaw,  Eagle,  Lewiston,  Tahoe,  Coyote.

  Please understand that Santa cannot get to every street.  Santa’s route will not include trailer parks, courts or dead-end streets.  For further information call (916) 617- 4721.

Please do not call 9-1-1; they have no information about this event.

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Copyright News-Ledger 2012


West Sac man arrested for church lot shooting

NEWS-LEDGER ONLINE — DEC 1, 2012 —

A spokesman for the West Sacramento Police Department reports that an arrest has been made after the shooting early this morning in a Christmas tree lot at 1000-block of Sacramento Avenue.

Police arrested Brian Brinsfield a 20 year old West Sacramento resident, at about 2 p.m. He will be booked into the county jail, reports Sgt. Nathan Steele of the WSPD.

Shortly after midnight this morning, police believe Brinsfield tried to steal a Christmas tree from a lot at a Russian Baptist church. When confronted by a guard, he allegedly fired shots before fleeing. No injuries are reported.

A witness was involved in identifying Brinsfield as a suspect, said Sgt. Steele.

“He was positively identified as a suspect and arrested at 1228 Sacramento Avenue,” Steele told the News-Ledger.

The arrest was made without incident at the location, which was linked to Brinsfield by police. No weapon has yet been recovered — but police have just begun searching the home, said Steele.

  Do you like what you see here?

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Copyright News-Ledger 2012

Robber shoots at guard and flees after trying to steal Christmas tree from church lot

NEWS-LEDGER ONLINE — DEC 1, 2012 —

A man allegedly trying to steal a Christmas tree from a lot at the Russian Church of Evangelic Christian Baptists shot at a security guard before fleeing.

Sgt. Nathan Steele of the West Sacramento Police Department said officer responded to the church at Jefferson Blvd. and Sacramento Avenue just after midnight this morning. They talked to a security guard.

“The security guard reported that he confronted a white male adult suspect described as having long hair, attempting to steal a Christmas tree from the lot,” said Steele in a press release. “When confronted by the security officer the male suspect made threats and fired several shots at the security officer.  The suspect then fled from the scene on foot.  Officers established a perimeter and conducted an extensive search for the suspect but were unable to locate him.”

Steele said that local detectives are currently following leads. He asked anyone with possible information to call Detective Ken Fellows at 916-617-4955.

“Please do not attempt to contact any potential suspect as he is considered armed and dangerous,” added Steele.

Copyright News-Ledger 2012