Mountain Views News, Combined Edition Saturday, July 18, 2020

MVNews this week:  Page A:3

COMMISSIONS continued from page 1 

Community members voiced their displeasure for 
the seat reductions during the public comment 
section of the meeting and via email. Concerns 
expressed included the need for diversity and more 
community involvement in city planning, as well as 
more communication to alert the public when seats 
become available. 

“This is such a bad idea in the middle of a pandemic,” 
said Deborah Sheridan, resident and member of 
the Sierra Madre Steering Committee. “We need 
an opportunity for more residents to be heard, not 
fewer. We need more perspectives and reducing a 
commission from seven to five is the wrong way to go 
about this,” Sheridan said. 

“You’re basically taking away the residents’ rights to 
make important decisions that will affect the quality 
of their life,” said Sierra Madre resident Heather 
Allen. “This is the type of thing that can lead to 
totalitarianism at some point. If the Council truly 
values the residents’ voices…you will protect those 
seats. This is just a very bad idea.” 

David Gordon, Board President at the Sierra Madre 
Playhouse expressed the need for better community 
reach. “This is part of a wider problem that the city 
has. It has a problem with communicating with its 
citizens. The solution is the city [should] engage 
much more in an attempt to reach out to citizens and 
to seek for volunteers for these city bodies. There are 
people out there who don’t know these opportunities 
exist,” Gordon stated. 

“It’s very important to keep seven members on 
the Planning Commission, as we do have some 
very serious considerations to be made for further 
development of our city,” said Gary Hood, Steering 
Committee member. 

Mayor John Capoccia expressed that the city has 
made a great effort to inform citizens about openings 
on various boards and commissions in local 
publications, through social media and on the city 

Both Mayor Capoccia and Council Member John 
Harabedian will not seek Council seats in the next 
term, so the mayor deferred to Mayor Pro Tem 
Rachelle Arizmendi and Council Member Gene 
Goss before the vote, but not before adding his own 
insight. “I really believe that the best think to do is to 
reduce all the commissions to five…I don’t think it’s 
going to make a big difference having two additional 
people on the commission as far as the quality of the 
decisions to be made,” Capoccia said. 

Both Mayor Pro Tem Arizmendi and Council 
Member Goss agreed on the reduction to five seats 
with the 

promise to reevaluate in May of 2021. “Democracy is 
not served when there’s no competition,” Goss said. 

In addition to the seat reductions, the City included 
a provision that would extend all board and 
commission member terms to four years. After 
review during the June 23, 2020 meeting, Council 
decided to move forward on the appointment of 
the following commissioners to a second term of 
four years: William Pevsner, Planning Commission, 
Anita Thompson, Senior Community Commission, 
Patrick Holland, Senior Community Commission, 
Karen Rowinsky, Community Services Commission, 
and London Koprowski, (Youth, Non-Voting) 
Community Services Commission. 

Council also extended the current term length of the 
Library Board Trustees to four years. 


Mountain Views-News Saturday, July 18, 2020 


 by Deanne Davis 



When historian Michele Zack was in the process of writing her awardwinning 
history of Sierra Madre, there were still those who whispered to 
her to play down the great TB epidemic that occurred around the turn of 
the last century and its tremendous role in shaping early Sierra Madre. 
What happened back then, and why would some people, even now, still 
feel that it should be hushed up? According to the Harvard University 
Collections, in the late 19th century and early 20th century, 70 to 90% 
of the urban populations of Europe and North America were infected 
with the TB bacillus, and about 80% of those individuals who developed 
active tuberculosis died of it. PBS, in their documentary “The Forgotten Plague”, state: “By the dawn 
of the 19th century, the deadliest killer in human history, tuberculosis, had killed one in seven of all 
the people who had ever lived. The disease struck America with a vengeance, ravaging communities 
and touching the lives of almost every family.” They state that eventually one out every 170 Americans 
would be in a TB sanitarium. 

Doctors at the beginning of the epidemic, unaware that TB was caused by a bacillus and was infectious, 
urged sufferers to get out of crowded cities, where bad air was thought to be the culprit, and into the 
healing fresh air of the countryside. Warm and dry climates were thought to be the most beneficial. 
The Transcontinental Railway, which had been completed in 1869, just a decade before the outbreak, 
made it possible for debilitated souls to take that advice and come west. Sierra Madre boosters, spotting 
an opportunity for growth, advertised our ideal climate. Foremost among those was our town’s 
founder, Nathaniel Carter, who himself suffered from TB. His advertisements featured before and after 
photographs of himself to show how he had gone from gaunt and wasted to the full bloom of health. 
This stupendous epidemic, hardly remembered now, affected every aspect of life in the entire U.S. It 
dramatically changed Sierra Madre and the lives of our citizens. 

A article from the Sierra Madre Historical Society. 

“Income tax returns are the most imaginative fiction being written today.” 

Herman Wouk 

“This is a question too difficult for a mathematician. It should be asked of a philosopher.” 

Albert Einstein said when asked about completing his income tax form. 

“Indeed, it may most verily be said, that only death and taxes certain are.” 

William Shakespeare 

It’s Tuesday, July 14th, friends and neighbors, and I’m checking my computer every five minutes 
to see if my electronically prepared taxes have arrived yet for my electronic signature so I can 
electronically return them to my tax preparer so they can electronically file them with the IRS. 
I realize we’ve had months of extended time to prepare, but, what with the pandemic and all, 
my adorable and incredibly gifted daughter, Leah, and I didn’t get around to doing mine until a 
couple of weeks ago. All of you out there are probably way more organized and did yours back 
in April so you’re just sitting home wishing you could go to the movies. Which is what I’d really 
like to do, too. Heavy sigh… 

Speaking of movies, Turner Classic Movies showed, “1776” last weekend. This is a 1972 
American musical drama film directed by Peter H. Hunt. The screenplay by Peter Stone was 
based on his book for the 1969 Broadway musical of the same name. The concept being where the 
burgeoning United States Founding Fathers gather in Philadelphia with the aim of establishing 
a set of governmental rules. Benjamin Franklin and John Adams charge Thomas Jefferson 
with writing a statement announcing the new country’s emancipation from British Rule. I was 
delighted when I saw that Mountain Views News editor, Susan Henderson, had reprinted the 
Declaration of Independence and the Constitution for a second week. You probably were, too. 

It was unbearably hot in Philadelphia when these guys got together to draft our Declaration, 
just like it is currently here, there and everywhere, but at least we don’t have to wear all those 
incredibly hot clothes that were the fashion then. Benjamin Franklin’s famous quote came to 
mind when I saw all the signatures at the bottom of the Declaration: “We must all hang together, 
or, most assuredly, we shall all hang separately!” 

We watched “Hamilton” on Disney+ on July 3rd and, once again, I loved every minute of it. 
I did get to see it when it first came to Los Angeles a year or so ago but as viewed on the TV 
screen with closed captioning, I enjoyed it even more. Leah and I have tickets to see it again in 
October when/if it is able to come back. 

Arlo Guthrie’s birthday was July 10th. He was 73. In case you don’t know what he was particularly 
famous for, it was the song, “Alice’s Restaurant.” This particular song was twenty minutes plus… 
“You can get anything you want at Alice’s Restaurant…” Anyway, something else you might 
not know, is that Sierra Madre had its own radio station, KMAX-FM, back in the 60’s, before 
anybody really knew what FM radio was. Owned by Max and Mary Ellen (last name has 
escaped me). Anyway, Mary Ellen had a call-in request show in the afternoons and one day she 
had an absolute melt-down on the air along the lines of, “Don’t any of you people ever ever ever 
call me again asking for that “Alice’s Restaurant” song! It’s twenty minutes long and I’m just not 
going to play it.” This was roll on the floor laughing material, broadcasted live. KMAX-FM was 
sold in 1975 and that was the end of that. If you want to read the story of our radio station, go 
online to KMAX-Henry Engineering and you’ll be fascinated by what Max and Mary Ellen did. 

John and I built and owned our own radio station, KROR-FM, broadcasting Modern Country 
Music from 1988 to 1994 and, I have to say, being in radio is certainly an exciting experience. 
After we sold, we always referred to that period as “The best of times and the worst of times,” a 
direct steal from “A Tale of Two Cities” by Charles Dickens. John, like Max, was a radio addict 
and was heard live on Saturday mornings starting in the ‘50’s on a variety of stations. He did his 
program the day we were married, Saturday, April 1st, 1967, and informed his audience that he 
was getting married and wasn’t just real sure about it. Fortunately, I didn’t hear that program, 
we got married and lived happily with each other and radio for 50 years. 

One of our Sierra Madre photographers, Dirk Bolle posted this picture of our Playhouse on 
July 13th on Facebook and, while you probably pass the Playhouse every day, let’s take it a step 
further and imagine we are past this virus and we’re celebrating life in our town without social 
distancing and facemasks. May God bless us and keep us and make His face to shine upon us 
and give us peace. 

 Take care of yourself this week, dear friends and neighbors. 

Wear that mask joyfully and be kind. Just be kind. 

My book page: Deanne Davis 

Where you’ll find “Sunrises and Sunflowers Speak Hope” 

And “A Tablespoon of Love, A Tablespoon of Laughter” 

Both of these books are stuffed with hope and a good recipe or two. 

There’s a new Emma Gainsworth Kindle novelette on the way but you can 

Enjoy “Emma’s Etouffee Café” right now! It’s on, too. 

You can follow me on Twitter: 


 4Support the Sierra Madre Rose Float 

Association by urchasing flowers, edibles, and 

Specialty plants including longevity spinach! 

Some fertilizer and tomato cages are available. 

9 am to 11 am every Saturday 

until plants run out! 

Check the website or updates 

YMCA Sierra Madre Recreation 

Center Garden 

611 E. Sierra Madre Blvd., Sierra Madre 

(Enter on the east side at the northeast corner) 

Suggested donations start at $5.00 

Proceeds benefit SMRFA and the YMCA 

Masks and social distancing required 

We hope you’ll come support our non-profits 
and go home with some terrific new plants! 

Sierra Madre Rose Float Association 

587 E Sierra Madre Bl 

Sierra Madre CA 91024 

(626) 355-7005 


July 1 to July 11, 2020 

 During this period the Sierra Madre Police Department responded 

 to 476 calls for service. 

Theft from Vehicles 

At about 2:50AM on 7/1/20, officers responded to the 300 block of N. Baldwin Ave 

for a call of a possible burglary in progress. Following a check of the area, officers 

discovered vehicle parts in the street around two parked vehicles. The owners of the 

vehicles responded and after a check of their vehicles discovered that the catalytic 

convertors had been stolen by unknown suspect(s) using a power drill that was heard 

by a neighbor. Case to Detectives 


On 5/4/20 at about 8:30PM, officers were dispatched to Kersting Court for a person 

possibly driving under the influence. Following an interview with the driver, officers 

conducted a field sobriety test. The driver did not pass the tests, was arrested and 

taken to the Pasadena Police Jail. Case to Pasadena DA’s office for filing 

Possession of Illegal Fireworks 

Officers responded to the area of Mira Monte and Mt. Wilson Trail at about 11:54PM 

on 7/4/20 following up on a report of fireworks in the area. Following an interview 

with a person that had the illegal fireworks in his possession, the fireworks were 

confiscated and placed in property for destruction. 

Stolen Vehicles 

At about 5:00AM on 7/8/20, a resident in the 200 block of W. Montecito Ave. heard 

her vehicle start up and back out of her driveway by unknown person(s) and drive 

southbound on Lima Street. Case to Detectives 

A resident in the 200 block of W. Montecito Ave. discovered at about 8;20AM, as he 

was leaving his home that his vehicle that he parked and locked on the street in front 

of his residence had been stolen. Case to Detectives 

Burglary from a Vehicle 

Sometime between 8:30PM on 7/8/20 and 9:00AM on 7/9/20, a resident in the 200 

block of E. Sierra Madre Bl. found that her locked vehicle parked in her carport, had 

been ransacked and had personal items stolen from her trunk.Case to Detectives 

Scooter and Skateboard Theft 

On 7/11/20 at 10:08AM, two young boys playing in a lot in the 200 block of W. Sierra 

Madre Bl. saw a red pick-up truck put their scooter and skateboard in the back of the 

truck and drive away south on Lima Street. Case to Detectives for follow up 

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