Mountain Views News, Pasadena Edition [Sierra Madre] Saturday, September 8, 2018

MVNews this week:  Page A:5


Mountain View News Saturday, September 8, 2018 

WALKING SIERRA MADRE... The Social Side By Deanne Davis

KATIE Tse..........This and That


If you visit my column often you 
know I’ve been guilty of recycling 
old articles lately. And just when 
I feared that I’d miss yet another week to submit a 
new piece, my Mom’s friend, Florence, came to the 
rescue! Aside from being an all-around lovely person, 
Florence is an endless source of anecdotes that are 
either hilarious, stranger than fiction, or, more often, 
both. Needless to say, I shamelessly pilfer her stories 
whenever I get the chance. And this latest one does 
not disappoint, at least in 
the “stranger than fiction” 

 During the Great 
Depression, two of 
Florence’s spinster aunts 
ran a bed and breakfast 
on some of the family’s 
sprawling property in 
Kansas. On one occasion, 
a couple with twelve 
children stayed for several 
nights and then skipped 
out of town without 
paying their bill. But that’s 
not the only thing they 
skipped out on --they also 
left behind one of their 

 “What do you mean 
they left one of their kids 
there?” I asked Mom 
incredulously after she returned from her dinner with 
Florence. I’ve heard of people depositing unwanted 
newborns at fire stations. But how exactly do you 
leave your flesh and blood in the uncertain custody of 
total strangers. Strangers to whom, I might add, you 
are already indebted.

 Since this all took place during the Depression, I 
assume that the parents’ decision was purely financial. 
However, how did they choose which child they 
would leave behind? Apparently he or she wasn’t the 
oldest or the youngest of the twelve. I can imagine 
a line of reasoning that would either say the oldest 
should go because they are the most independent 
or the youngest should be left because they are the 
most dependent. But how do you randomly pick one 
from the middle? Child psychology says that middle 
children are more well adjusted, so maybe this couple 
were ahead of their time 
in that regard. Or maybe 
they just chose the kid 
who annoyed them 
the most. That’s what I 
would’ve done anyway. 

 Luckily for the child, 
Florence’s aunts welcomed 
him or her into the family 
and possibly even went 
through the legalities of 
formal adoption. This 
brings up all sorts of 
fascinating hypothetical 
situations. If this child 
became the legal heir to 
Florence’s family’s estate, 
did the biological family 
try to horn in on the 
inheritance? I can totally 
imagine a group of greedy 
relatives pounding on the 
door for handouts. Wait, I think I did see this story 
before. Yes, it was “Secondhand Lions” with Robert 
Duvall and Michael Caine. However, I’m sure if we 
really analyzed the story against Florence’s account, 
Florence’s version would be even more outrageous. 
Like I said, with Florence you know the real story will 
be stranger than fiction! 

Walking Sierra Madre...The Social Side

Deanne Davis

August 15, 2018 For September 8th edition

“Becoming an Eagle Scout is just about the only 
thing you can put on your resume at age 50 that 
you did at age 14 – and it still impresses.” Randy 

 “The unique leadership role in America over 
the past century of men who earned their Eagle 
Scout award as boys is unparalleled in business, 
the professions, politics, the military, and national 
security...Inspirational!” Secretary of Defense 
Robert M. Gates

 “I have never forgotten my days as an Eagle 
Scout. I didn’t know it at the time, but what really 
came out of my Scouting was learning how to lead 
and serve the community. It has come in handy in 
my career in government.” Lloyd Bentsen

 It has been my privilege to know two Eagle 
Scouts, my son-in-law, Dave Simon, and his son, 
Blake Simon. I was privileged to meet another 
young man who is well on his way to earning his 
Eagle Scout award, fifteen-year old Ian Carson, 
who is currently involved in his Eagle Project.

 Ian is entering his sophomore year at PHS and 
one of his favorite subjects is science. He is also 
part of the swim and water polo teams there. Ian 
started right out in scouting with the Tigers then 
Cub Scouts and has continued through his school 
career. He is currently part of Troop 110, which 
meets at St. Rita’s. 

 Ian’s Eagle Project is to build and install an 
AREDN (Amateur Radio Emergency Data 
Network) network node which will go on 
a hillside in Sierra Madre. These nodes are 
compact, low-power, high frequency radio 
repeaters. The project process itself isn’t that 
easy. First of all, Ian had to get permission for the 
project then he entered into the exciting world 
of fundraising as this project eventually will cost 
in the neighborhood of $1,500.00. Ian has been 
contacting Rotary Clubs and the Sierra Madre 
Rotary Club has donated $500 toward his project. 
Ian is hoping that organizations in other cities 
which will benefit from this system will donate 
the balance of his needed funds. Are you listening 
out there, friends and neighbors who belong to 
Rotary? This is a worthwhile project.

 Ian will purchase his equipment under the 
direction of Sierra Madre CERT (Community 
Emergency Response Team) and his next step is to 
recruit volunteers to help him. This is where he’ll 
be bringing in younger scouts in his Troop. Finally, 
he and his team of scouts will install the system 
somewhere above the tree line, at an elevation of 
about 1500 ft on one of our hillsides. The antenna 
location needs to be approved by the Sierra Madre 
Mountains Conservancy. A proposed site for this 
project has been selected and a final proposal is 
being submitted for approval by the city and SMCC. 
This AREDN system is like a wireless emergency 
internet which will operate when there is no power 
and when other forms of communication are not 
working...major earthquake or other disaster...and 
will fill a hole from the Mt. Wilson AREDN node 
where Mt. Harvard and Jones Peak block the signal 
to all of Sierra Madre, East Pasadena and most of 
Arcadia and Monrovia.

 There will be multiple nodes throughout Sierra 
Madre, including at the City Hall Emergency 
Operations Center and at Sierra Vista Park, where 
a shelter would be located after a major disaster – 
which we all hope will never happen! 

 The picture is of Ian and Bob Speers. Bob is 
one of those splendid people who maintain the 
trails for both Bailey Canyon and Mt. Wilson. The 
drone Ian is holding belongs to the Sierra Madre 
Drone Association and was used to take pictures 
of potential hillside sites.

 I find myself astonished when I have the 
opportunity to chat with a young person like Ian, 
who is filled with purpose. Gives me 

 My book page: Deanne Davis 

Kindle books of all sorts and hardcover 
“Tablespoon of Love” are on there,

 as is “Star of Wonder.” Star of Wonder the CD is 
now on TuneCore! Take a look!


 Follow me on Twitter, too!


Please join Sierra Madre Police and Fire Departments on Tuesday, September 11, for their S Annual 
September 11th Remembrance Program in front of the SMFD Fire Station, 242 W Sierra Madre Blvd.

Each year the SMPD and SMFD honor the 2,973 people who perished on September 11, 2001 during 
the attacks on the World Trade Center in New York City, the Pentagon in Arlington, Va., and the crash-
site in Shanksville, Pa.

Event Itinerary:

6:45AM Sierra Madre Police and Fire personnel procession to the front of the SMFD fire station 

6:50AM: Raise and lower the United States Flag to half-staff.

6:58AM: All assembled called to attention

6:59AM – Time of South Tower Collapse

A moment of silence will unanimously be observed by all 44 of Verdugo stations and Verdugo will toll 
three sets of five tones to honor those firefighters.

7:02AM Sierra Madre Fire Department will ring our bell 5 times


Each year SMRFA has the opportunity to 
purchase tickets to the Rose Parade and Rose 
Bowl game. The SMRFA application for tickets 
will be due in September. For 2019 they have 
changed pricing. The new prices for Parade 
tickets are $100 each and the Game tickets are 
$245, $215, or $160 depending on the location.

 If you are interested in getting tickets to either 
event, please let me know ASAP so that I can 
start putting together a list. The list is created 
in the order requests are received (with possible 
limits on how many a person can get initially).

 Let me know which event and how many 
tickets (and which price game tickets) you are 
interested in. We can get a limited number of 
tickets to both events, guaranteed. We can 
request more, but there is no guarantee we will 
get them and the tickets may be split up (not 
seated together).

 The due date to Tournament is September 
30th, so I need to know by September 20th if 
you want tickets. We will then let you know if 
you will be able to get the requested number of 

 We will need a check for the tickets (made 
out to SMRFA) for the total amount prior 
to September 26th.

 Barbie Bevington President, SMRFA


Sierra Madre resident Vasken 
Kenneth Gourdikian, who allegedly 
at one time called for 
stricter gun control laws, was 
facing federal felony charges for 
illegally selling more than 100 
firearms over the last 3 years.

 According to his attorney, 
Mark Werksman, Gourdikian, 
48, will plead guilty to engaging 
in the business of dealing 
firearms without a license and 
making a false statement during 
the purchase of a firearm. 


Gourdikian resigned in March 
from the police department after 
22 years.

According ABC News, Gourdikian 
leveraged his career as a 
police officer to purchase firearms 
not available to the general 
public, authorities said, and 
then sell the weapons using a 
third-party to make deals. He is 
alleged to have used the status of 
the firearms to drive up the cost.

 Authorities said as a police officer, 
he didn't have to wait for the 
mandatory waiting period and 
could buy several guns at a time.

 Gourdikian will appear before 
a judge on Sept. 20 to formally 
enter his guilty pleas to the two 
felony offenses.

As part of the plea agreement, 
Gourdikian will be recommended 
to serve a term of imprisonment 
of 30 months for 
each count to run concurrently, 
followed by a three-year term of 
supervised release.

Mountain Views News 80 W Sierra Madre Blvd. No. 327 Sierra Madre, Ca. 91024 Office: 626.355.2737 Fax: 626.609.3285 Email: Website: