Mountain Views News, Combined Edition Saturday, January 7, 2023

MVNews this week:  Page 3

Mountain Views-News Saturday, January 7, 2023 



Longtime Sierra Madre resident Mildred Solury 
Berkshire made it to a new year 2023 at the age of 
98 but passed peacefully on Monday, January 2. 

Known affectionately as Millie, she was preceded 
in death by husband Tom Solury and had a second 
chance of love with husband Doug Berkshire, 

She is survived by daughter Nancy Soluri-Whelan, 
husband Richard Whelan, and daughter Honor Soluri-
Whelan; also survived by son Thomas Solury 
II, wife Vicki, son Taber McDonald, wife Coralie 
and baby daughter Ava Rose. She was the sister of 
Mert Waite who died in September of last year, and 
was Aunt Millie or Great Aunt Millie (“MeMe”) to 
many nieces and nephews. 

In many ways, Millie was one of the last of the “old 
timers” of Sierra Madre. Arriving as a teenager in 
the 1930s from a farm in Minnesota, she lived with 
her parents in the Sierra Madre Canyon. She attended 
Monrovia High School and must have been 
a healthy student as she walked daily to and from 
the canyon to school, a fact she reminded others of 
when hearing complaints of transportation issues 
from the youngsters. 

Like many of her peer group, both young men and 
women, she participated in the defense efforts during 
World War II as an employee with R.A. Hawks 
Company, predecessor of Sierra Engineering. She 
spent her life as a dedicated and old-school wife, 
mother and homemaker. In her younger married 
life, she was involved in the women’s auxiliary of 
the Sierra Madre Fire Department and the Congregational 
Church. Later, she became interested in 
writing and took creative writing classes for years, 
forming both strong friendships with other writers 
and developed her writing style and craft. She 
was most proud of her poetry and personal essays 
which were accepted for publication in small literary 
presses and magazines. 

When Millie became your friend, she was your 
friend for life. That included your children and 
grandchildren. She practiced the art of active listening, 
without judgment and gave wise counsel 
when asked. You were welcomed with a smile into 
her sunny kitchen for conversation over a hot cup 
of tea. On a lucky day, you sat down at her kitchen 
table just when she was taking lemon bars or date-
nut bars out of the oven. 

Millie’s circle of friends was wide and varied. Hav-
ing lived in her Colony Drive home for 53 years, 
she was respected on her block for her wisdom and 
her wit. She was an active member of the Priscillas 
for many decades, and was most pleased to present 
the Inspirational Readings at their monthly meetings. 
She made friends through the library, and very 
much enjoyed the community she was offered by 
the Methodist Church. She loved, loved, loved her 
mountain cabin at Green Valley Lake, putting out 
the flag on the porch to announce her arrival at her 
“Rinky Dink.” 

When her vision failed and she (we) began to fear 
for her safety living alone, she made the transition 
to assisted living at the British Home in town. 
There, she was quick to make new friends and decorated 
her new little quarters with all the same Millie 
touches as she had at home. She had a view of her 
beloved Sierra Madre Foothills and sweet-smelling 
bushes that attracted hummingbirds to her window. 
She was home in a new home. 

In her final days, she was ready to go, and she clearly 
told us her time had come to an end. We are grateful 
for the British Home staff for their years of support 
and Vitas Hospice for their tender loving care in her 
final days. 

If you wish to send an acknowledgment gift in her 
memory, we might suggest either vitascommunityconnection.
com or the Sierra Madre Public Library.
Burial is private. 


by Deanne Davis 

“I love a parade;
The tramping of feet,
I love every beatI hear of a drum. 
I love a parade;
When I hear a band 
I just wanna standAnd cheer as they come!”
(Music: Harold Arlen / Lyrics: Ted Koehler) 

This oldie but goodie from 1931 pretty much 
says it all. We love a parade and we love the 
Rose Parade, most of all. After watching the 
Rose Parade, 2023, here is my totally and 
completely unbiased opinion: Our float, “Papa’s 
Turn” was the best thing in it. Yes, the 
other floats were nice. The bands were huge 
and great. The equestrian units were superb. 
It didn’t rain. The sun came out. 

But best of all, our float won “Founder’s 
Award!” This is awarded for the most outstanding 
float built and decorated by volunteers 
from a community or organization. 
Many thanks to Kay Rigby Sappington, 
Dick Sappington, LaDonna Gaydash, Robert 
Gjerde and so many others who made “Papa’s 
Turn” come to dazzling life. The picture today 
is a closeup of Papa and one of his little 
guys, perched on a tree branch behind him. 
So much about our float was whimsical and 
sweet; the beehive and the buzzing bees, birds, 
raccoons, squirrels. Greg Dohlen designed a 
float that is so personal to Sierra Madre, featuring 
bears. Our court: Jessica Allen, Kiera 
Dean, Marshall Gluck, Lauren Kong, Max 
Romero and Lina Wallgren were such fine 
representatives of our city. Thanks, guys! 

One really nice thing everyone might not 
know: The red roses at the front of our float 
are in personalized vials meant to honor a 
loved one. The Sierra Madre Float Committee 
are probably taking a well-earned few days off 
and then gearing up for 2024! 

Getting back to the concept of picking one 
word to be your personal New Year’s intention 
or mission statement for the year, you’ll 
recall that after several years of HOPE, I’ve 
moved on to KIND. In a classic Peanuts strip, 
Lucy Van Pelt is talking to good ole’ Charlie 
Brown: “Life is a mystery, Charlie Brown…do 
you know the answer?” 

Charlie Brown responds, “Be kind, don’t 
smoke, be prompt, smile a lot, eat sensibly, 
avoid cavities and mark your ballot carefully. 
Avoid too much sun, send overseas packages 
early, love all creatures above and below, insure 
your belongings and try to keep the ball 
low.” The only thing he missed was to be sure 
to floss daily and drink lots of water. 

Lucy says, “Hold real still because I’m going to 
hit you a very sharp blow on the nose.” 

Yep, that’s what she said, which got me to 
thinking about the way a lot of people seem 
to be speaking, and behaving. There’s a new 
show on television called “Customer Wars.” 
The first time I saw this I was absolutely and 
utterly astonished. I watched what seem to 
be perfectly normal people attack each other 
over the most petty, trivial things. Example: 
A whole bunch of people are at a restaurant 
featuring a buffet. The buffet had run out of 
crab legs, there were just a few left. A brawl 
the likes of which you would never think you 
would see in a restaurant ensued over who 
would walk away with the last three crab legs. 
Women were swinging on each other, knock-

takes a close look at the fascinating world of fanfiction to explore how young people express 
themselves. Her latest book, Human-Centered Data Science, discusses best practices 
for addressing the bias and inequality that may result from the automated analysis 
of large datasets. 

Check back with the Sierra Madre Public Library for announcements on upcoming programming 
and events for our 2023 One Book One City selection, Flying Free: My Victory 
Over Fear to Become the First Latina Pilot on the US Aerobatic Team by Cecilia 
Connect all month long through engaging themed programs that are free and fun for 
the whole family. Call the Library at (626) 355-7186 for more information. 

ing each other down, while their small children 
sobbed and tried to run to safety. The 
lesson here probably isn’t to avoid restaurants 
with buffets. It might possibly be to be KIND. 
To remember that the person who is taking all 
the crab legs, or whatever, might be having a 
personal crisis of some sort. 

Have you ever been in Target or someplace 
like that and witnessed a toddler having a 
full-blown world-class tantrum? You know, 
the kind where they’re on the floor, their back 
is arched, their little face is purple and as soon 
as they can draw a breath they’re going to let 
loose a scream that will shake the walls? Have 
you ever been the mother of that child? Have 
you given that poor humiliated mother a look 
that could set fire to her hair? I’m ashamed to 
admit I’ve done that. But not anymore. 

We’ve all heard the Five Things You Can’t 
Take Back: A stone after it’s thrown, a word 
once it is spoken, an occasion once it is missed, 
an action when it is done, and time once it has 
passed. For me it’s that word once it is spoken. 
I want my words to be KIND. That’s all, just 

Jesus pretty much covered this in just a few 
words, which he repeated several times: 

“So now I am giving you a new commandment: 
Love each other. Just as I have loved 
you, you should love each other. By this everyone 
will know that you are My disciples, if 
you love one another.” (John 13:34-35) 

In a world where you can be anything you 
want to be…Be KIND! 

My book page: Deanne Davis 
Yes, Christmas is behind us but my books:
“Sunrises and Sunflowers Speak Hope”
“A Tablespoon of Love, A Tablespoon of 
Would be really nice gifts for that person you 
suddenly realized you missed.
“Star of Wonder” a delightful Christmas Kindle 
story, where four lonely people find love 
following a strange new star on Christmas 
Eve, is there, too, 
and a nice story is never a bad idea, even after 


The Sierra Madre Public Library 
has announced the 2023 selection 
of One Book One City; Flying Free 
by Cecilia Aragon. 

One Book One City is a community 
reading program that invites 
everyone in Sierra Madre to read 
and discuss the same book during 
February 2023 and participate in 
exciting programs and events. 
Aragon’s memoir, Flying Free, 
shares her own journey of breaking 
past her own fears to become a 
champion aerobatic pilot. Her 2019 
book, Writers in the Secret Garden,