Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Mark Saturday, July 7 on your calendar for Wendy Wayne's celebration of life ceremony set for the Fox Theater downtown

* ... WENDY: The celebration of life for Wendy Wayne, who died last week after a long battle with non-Hodgins lymphoma, is set for Saturday, July 7, at the Fox Theater. That's the word from Wendy's husband Gene Tackett, who told me the event will take place at 2 p.m. at the historic downtown venue. More exciting news is that Gene and CSUB President Horace Mitchell are working on a plan to create nursing school scholarships in Wendy's name, and possibly even renaming the nursing school the "Wendy Wayne Department of Nursing" at CSUB. In 1978 Wendy earned a degree in nursing from CSUB and was later inducted into the university's Alumni Hall of Fame. More on this as it develops but I could not think of a finer tribute to a woman who meant so much to our community.

 * ... EXCHANGE STUDENTS: Wendy Wayne was a student of the world, from her early years with the Peace Corps (where she met husband Gene Tackett) to her later years traveling while working on humanitarian projects in Third World countries. She always had an open seat at her house for strangers, and she loved the exploration of other cultures. One program she would have admired is Horizons du Monde, a group that places exchange students with local families. Susan Peninger, local coordinator for Horizons du Monde, told me she desperately needs 10 families to place young French students July 10-31. This is an experience that will certainly enrich your life. Interested? Call Sue at (661) 332-7147

 * ... FIRES: Mark Parsons is a graduate of both Bakersfield High School and Bakersfield College and is now one of the hundreds of volunteers fighting the devastating wildfires in northern Colorado. His mother, Ann Danforth, said Mark has been working disaster relief operations for the Red Cross since Hurricane Katrina in 2005. He and his wife, Sue, live less than 45 miles from the fire.

 * ... HOT SHOTS: And speaking of the Colorado fires, some 20 members of the Fulton Hot Shots fire fighting crew of the U.S. Forest Service based in Glennville have been on the fire line for more than two weeks, including Bakersfield resident Edgar Sanchez. Word is the Hot Shots may be there at least another one or two weeks. (photo courtesy of the Fulton Hot Shots)

 * ... BIRTHDAY: Happy 50th birthday to Gary Blackburn, one of the owners of Sequoia Sandwich Co. Hard to believe Sequoia opened its first branch in Bakersfield back in 1999. Blackburn and co-owner Jeff Simpson now have three Bakersfield locations and one in Clovis.

 * ... HOTEL LEBEC: Jo Ann Scroggins wrote to thank me for my recent postings on the old Hotel Lebec, which allowed her to delve a bit into her own family history with a connection to the Lebec. "My great grand aunt, Cowee Erskine, married Thomas O'Brien in 1911. Thanks to your blog, I now know how my great grand aunt met her husband! Cowee (Anna Cowee Erskine) had a successful singing career which I am just starting to research."

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