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In the News - Friday, September 9, 2011



Devils Canyon grow sites raided… again

  It’s practically a given during the local marijuana harvest season (August to October) that a STEP (Sheriff’s Tactical Enforcement Personnel) team from the Tulare County Sheriff’s Department will raid a grow site in Devils Canyon. The remote canyon located along the South Fork drainage eight miles southeast of Three Rivers has ideal, well-watered terrain where Sequoia National Park and Bureau of Land Management lands share common boundaries.
   In August 2004 a large grow site in Devils Canyon was eradicated. Several new grow sites were discovered during subsequent fly-overs. In 2007, another complex of more than 35,000 plants was eradicated from BLM land in Devils Canyon.
   On Tuesday, Sept. 6, Tulare County deputies and CAMP (Campaign Against Marijuana Planting) personnel raided yet another site in Devils Canyon. This time more than 16,500 plants were removed along with the usual grower supplies.
   No weapons were found and no suspects were arrested during this operation but Lt. Tom Sigley said the raid is only the beginning in a season that promises to keep at least nine sheriff’s deputies busy for the next two months.
   The recent Devils Canyon site was spotted during a U.S. Forest Service helicopter fly-over. Tulare County law officers were alerted and then coordinated the removal of the plants that ranged from one to six feet tall.
   The discovery of the illicit pot being grown on public lands is nearby other sites that were eradicated in the past several seasons, Lt. Sigley said. Although it was certainly not a big find relative to some others in past years, it’s obvious that the Mexican drug cartels remain active in the Tulare County foothills and mountains.
   But there’s a twist in this year’s marijuana-growing activity that Lt. Sigley sees as an alarming trend. Now scores of local marijuana consumers are turning to cultivating their own grow sites on the valley floor.
   Lt. Sigley said in 2010 the STEP team located 240 grow sites on the valley floor; this year, deputies have located more than twice that number. It’s the STEP team’s responsibility to determine whether these grow sites are legitimate under medical marijuana laws or illicit growers.
   The growers are taking advantage of the loopholes because of the confusion surrounding the amount of plants that each medical marijuana cardholder is permitted to grow, Lt. Sigley said. Some doctors are recommending that each patient be allowed up to 99 plants for “personal use.”
   Supervisor Allen Ishida, who is currently wrestling with a county ordinance to regulate these numbers, said so much marijuana is being produced that local prices have dropped 50 percent. The intent of the county ordinance, he said, is to allow nonprofit dispensaries to exist in commercially zoned or industrial areas once the doctors get realistic with the numbers of plants each patient can grow.
  “The medical marijuana should be dispensed by pharmacies like any other prescription drug so it can be regulated and taxed,” Supervisor Ishida said. “As long as state and federal law is contrary, the pharmacies won’t be involved.”
   For the foreseeable future there is going to be more marijuana-related crime and violence. On Monday, Sept. 5, Cesar Ramirez, 35, of Hayward was found dead of a gunshot wound near a grow site in Dinuba that he was tending.
   There are two suspects in that case but no arrests. Lt. Sigley said on the public lands where there were millions of plants now there are hundreds of thousands; on the valley floor where there were a handful of grow sites now there are hundreds.
  “If the federal government would take a stand and tell the states they are cutting off funding until state and federal marijuana laws are consistent, there would be 100 percent compliance,” Ishida said.

Red Barn houses gift shop and more

  If the Three Rivers business community were to bestow an Entrepreneur of the Year award for unparalleled achievement in a new business, the owners Susan and Rick Fraser of Red Barn Gifts & Sequoia Souvenirs would be the obvious winners. The dynamic duo has taken an aging commercial building, formerly the home of Optical Measuring for more than a decade, and totally transformed the 3,800-square-foot facility into a state-of-the art manufacturing and retail outlet.
   The owner of the leased property, David Learned of Century 21 Three Rivers, couldn’t be more excited.
  “With the showroom and retail outlet in the front of the Red Barn all the businesses here in the complex have seen more traffic,” Learned said. “The business is going to be an asset to the entire community.”
   And the best news of all may be the Frasers’ willingness to furnish sparkling clean public restrooms. Visitors and residents alike will be able to make use of this rare Three Rivers amenity, and many will show their appreciation by buying souvenirs and gifts, or one of the cremation urns or caskets from a separate showroom adjacent to the gift shop.
   The funeral-related business is why the Frasers decided to lease the Red Barn in the first place. Now it seems that the retail businesses from souvenirs to funeral goods and advice, complement each other.
  “We didn’t want to have the funeral part of this overwhelm anyone when they came in their time of need,” Susan said during last Saturday’s grand opening event. “We wanted to create an upbeat vibe with the gift shop and a place where other patrons were received in a warm and comforting atmosphere.”
   Susan admitted that the development of In the Light Urns and its parent company, United Priority Distributing, was at first an outlet for the couple to channel their personal grief. They lost a son who tragically drowned at age 14 on Mother’s Day in Orange County.
   Throughout the grieving process they were completely taken with all who expressed sympathy, especially those who experienced a similar loss of a loved one. They reached out to many of these folks and realized there really wasn’t an appropriate way to honor the unique memory of those who had passed.
   This was the creative impetus to make the cremation urns, and the Frasers founded In the Light Urns in 2001. Their innovative designs honor loved ones for being a Boy Scout, a swimmer, a baseball player, a loving father, a great grandparent, or whatever theme epitomizes the life of the deceased.
   In 2004 the couple moved to Three Rivers. The funeral products continue to be developed and marketed on one of the Frasers’ 20 websites.
   Rick, who owned a successful plumbing business in Orange County, could fix or make just about anything. For many years, he has been a student of web-based marketing, computer design, and engraving, most of which self-taught.
   The engraving process so integral to intricate metal work for urns and caskets also lends itself to making impressive souvenirs like replicas of the Indian-head sign at the entrance to Sequoia National Park.
  “This week we transferred our designs to hats, shirts, and some other new products, Rick exclaimed. “There’s no limit to what we can do with this product line.”
   The Sequoia National Park souvenirs, the capstone items of the new gift shop, are already available in the national parks through the outlets operated by the Sequoia Natural History Association. The Red Barn features Rick’s designs but also the work of local artists like Jana Botkin (paintings), Steve Wood (Western-style metal work), and Gerald Woody (birdhouses).
   The company has created 11 full-time jobs with plans to add more employees in the near future.
  “We added the traditional gift and souvenir shop because it was a natural fit with our business,” Rick added. “We have the tools right here so that everyone can enjoy the gifts and the shop. This is not a seasonal business, but a diversified company that one day could work 24/7.”
   Who says the American dream is no longer? It’s alive and well right here in Three Rivers.

Truck driver injured in solo wreck

  The California Highway Patrol (CHP) is investigating an accident involving a dump truck hauling a flatbed trailer that occurred Tuesday, Sept. 6, at 9:30 p.m. According to preliminary information that was reported by a CHP officer, the rig driven by Robert Vasquez, 37, of Tulare crashed on Highway 198 south of the Mineral King Road.
   Vasquez, who was heading down canyon and hauling an excavator on a trailer, told the CHP officer at the scene that the accident occurred when his brakes failed. The driver suffered major injuries and was transported via ambulance to Kaweah Delta Medical Center.

A look back: 9/11 in the Commonwealth

  It has been 10 years since we all watched in horror the tragic events that unfolded on the other side of the nation on September 11, 2001. Here is a look back at how the Commonwealth documented the events.
   THE KAWEAH COMMONWEALTH’s five-column headline on Friday, Sept. 14, 2001, read “911 on 9/11” with a subhead of “Terror in America: Kaweah Country mourns.”
   Here are some excerpts from the article:
  “Since the tragic events of Tuesday, Sept. 11, 2001, Kaweah Country residents, like all Americans, have remained riveted to the media coverage of a series of terrorist acts that will forever change the way we live. No longer will the American people live secure in a free and open society, no longer will we board an airplane without remembering.”
   Senator John McCain (R-Ariz.) stated, “The bombing of the World Trade Center and the Pentagon is 21st-century warfare. Our lifestyle as we know it is about to permanently change.”
   Senator Barbara Boxer (D-Calif): “It is unbearable what our people went through... People got killed because they were Americans.”
   Representative George Radanovich (R-Mariposa): “I’m appalled at the complete disregard for human life.”
   Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-California): “Any country or other entity who would harbor the terrorists responsible for this tragedy is an enemy of the United States and we must respond militarily.”
   President George W. Bush: “Today, our nation saw evil... None of us will ever forget this day.”

Kaweah Country reacts
   On Tuesday, Sept. 11, residents of Three Rivers and Tulare County, like most Americans, stared in shock and disbelief at the televised replays of one, and then a second, jetliner crashing into the World Trade Center towers. Daily routines of work and school seemed unimportant next to the events unfolding 3,000 miles away in New York, Washington, D.C., and Pennsylvania.
   Contrary to at least one televised news report, Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks were not closed, but additional rangers were immediately stationed in all the high visitor-use areas to establish a presence.
   The FAA-ordered grounding of all aircraft prevented the parks from using helicopters to assist with fire operations. On Wednesday, Sept. 12, Park Service packers delivered supplies including newspapers to more than 40 people working a fire in the East Fork canyon near Mineral King.
   According to Jeff Manley, fire operations manager, crewmembers were able to check on relatives who live back east via cell phones.
   The lack of helicopters also hindered fire managers in making accurate estimates of the size of at least two fires currently burning in the national parks.
   Also on September 11, there was excessive tardiness reported at Three Rivers Union School. These late students were excused as families stayed together to watch the early television coverage of the unfolding events. The school’s annual Back-to-School night event that was scheduled for that evening was postponed.
   Pastors Keith Edwards, Warren Campbell, and David Robertson presided over a nondenominational service held on the evening of September 11 at Community Presbyterian Church in Three Rivers.
   Dozens of Three Rivers residents commuted to Visalia and waited for up to four hours to donate blood. Day number two of the Tulare County Fair was cancelled.
   Local shopping malls closed, as did federal and state agencies and Friant and Millerton dams in Fresno County.
   A Commonwealth editorial said: “Although this was a day that we would like to tear off the calendar and discard, it is instead a day that will live forever in the annals of history worldwide.
  “We are fortunate to live in this small corner of America where we can be relatively safe and secure. The realization that more people were murdered on September 11 in these barbaric attacks than live in our entire community also leaves feelings of vulnerability.
  “As a nation, we will be united in our grief. America is forever scarred, but although eternally changed, we will heal and help others heal.”
* * *
   In the Friday, Sept. 21, issue, the front-page headline was “F-16s scramble in Kaweah Country.”
   One week after September 11, military aircraft were seen and heard flying over Three Rivers and Sequoia National Park. The F-16s that buzzed local airspace were actually checking out the parks’ contract helicopter.
   Reportedly, the helicopter appeared to the Western Air Defense Sector as an “unidentified aircraft.” According to a parks spokesperson, the incident resulted from a breakdown in communications.
   As an added national security measure immediately after September 11, 2011, each day before takeoff, the parks’ helicopter pilot was to call the Fresno Air Terminal and receive a discreet transponder code for each mission. The code enabled air-controllers to identify the aircraft on a radar screen.
   After assigning the code, Fresno controllers would notify the FAA’s Oakland Control Center, which in turn communicated with various military installations.
   The morning of Tuesday, Sept. 18, began routinely with the Ash Mountain helibase receiving their transponder code. With the transponder turned on in the helicopter, the pilot was able to detect when the craft was appearing on radar, which is called being “painted.”
   The park helicopter was painted all morning during its nearly three hours of flying time. The data suggested that aviation authorities and the military were advised of the helicopter’s code.
   The breakdown in communications occurred, however, after the helicopter had landed from its morning run, the resumed flying in the afternoon. At about 3 p.m., the helicopter flew above 12,000 feet elevation and appeared on somebody’s radar screen as unidentified.
   That’s when the F-16s came thundering out of the Fresno Air National Guard base. Upon contact, the helicopter pilot returned immediately to the Ash Mountain helibase.
   As a result of the incident, the regional office of the National Park Service requested that Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks temporarily ground all aircraft until standard operating procedures could be established.
   Also in the September 21, 2001, issue was a photo of Three Rivers School students and teachers who gathered at the school’s flagpole before class on Friday, Sept. 14, during the presidentially proclaimed National Day of Remembrance in honor of the September 11 victims.
   The week’s Neighbor Profile — Patsy Britten Lauder — was photographed in front of an American flag at her home. Another photo in the issue was of the Paul Bunyan statue that stands in front of the Three Rivers Historical Museum with an American flag waving in the breeze.
   Other articles included “Congress urges flags flown for 30 days,” “Make sure charities are legitimate,” and “Grief, shock and market trends.”

Sequoia-Kings Canyon’s premier firefighters mark 30 years

  In 1981, the National Park Service organized several wildland fire suppression crews. Previously, the NPS largely depended on loosely organized local crews or other agencies to respond to fires on park lands. The agency realized it was time to have their own fire crews ready, and to develop the expertise, for fire response.
   One of the first of the NPS hotshot crews was established in Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks. Crews were also established in Rocky Mountain National Park (the current Alpine Hotshots) and in Yellowstone (the now disbanded Bison Hotshots).
   Initially, all three crews were called Arrowhead Crews 1, 2, and 3; so named to honor the arrowhead shield that symbolizes the National Park Service and is seen on uniforms and signs. The Arrowhead Hotshots name remains with the Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks crew today.
   The obstacles for the crew’s formation were numerous. The first Arrowhead Hotshots camped in tents while they built their barracks at the Swale Work Center in Kings Canyon National Park.
   The U.S. Forest Service was pressuring the NPS to be more involved and to shoulder more of the responsibility for fire response. However, the NPS crews needed to prove themselves to their interagency firefighting peers. After all, hotshot crews are often referred to “elite” firefighters, expected to meet exacting skill and fitness standards. For the Arrowheads, several initial challenging assignments helped quiet that concern.
   Today, the 20-member Arrowhead Hotshot crew is one of 110 hotshot crews throughout the nation and are available as initial response for fires throughout federal lands. They meet the interagency standards as a Type 1 hotshot crew.
   Reflecting on 30 years of service, the formation of the hotshot crews for the NPS have had significant impacts on the agency’s fire management beyond the initial response that these crews provide. The hotshot model helped formalize NPS fire response both in the agency and beyond. It has broadened the NPS perspective on fire management by responding to fires for different agencies, within different fuel types, and in a range of environments such as complex wildland urban interfaces. It has provided training opportunities for firefighters throughout the parks and helped develop generations of leaders within fire management in the NPS.
  “It is a great honor for me to run this crew,” said John Goss, current Arrowhead superintendent. “I follow in the steps of incredible leaders who instilled pride, safety, and teamwork into the foundation of the crew. I work hard to ensure that the Arrowheads continue to be respected in the firefighting community.”
   For more information about the Arrowhead Hotshots, visit www.arrowheadhotshots.org.
The local Hotshot crew returned this week after being in Grand Canyon National Park on assignment. With wildfire season in full swing throughout the western states, after a few days off, the crew will no doubt be hitting the road again.
   Article contributed by Deb Schweizer, Sequoia-Kings Canyon National Parks fire education officer.

Lake Kaweah prepares for Public Lands Day

  On Saturday, Sept. 24, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers at Lake Kaweah will once again be participating in National Public Lands Day. Lake Kaweah’s event is one of the largest in California, where 300 to 400 participants attend each year.
  “We have people that come all the way from San Jose to the north and Los Angeles to the south to attend, but mostly our volunteers are from the small communities in Tulare County,” said Valerie McKay, Lake Kaweah park ranger and an organizer of the annual Public Lands Day.
   At least half of the volunteers attend with family members. There are also Boy Scout troops, Girl Scout troops, and high school clubs.
   This year, as in years’ past, there will be booths from local community groups and service organizations. A free, catered lunch is available for all volunteers. Live music will be provided this year by local band Iceberg Without Warning; a free raffle will provide lucky winners with prizes.
   Arrive between 7 and 8 a.m. on September 24 at Horse Creek Campground to register and receive a work assignment. Participants will receive a free T-shirt, and coffee and bakery items will be available.
   Projects include painting, planting, litter pickup, general maintenance, vegetation removal, sprinkler installation, Horse Camp upkeep, and more.
   For more information or to volunteer to lead a work group, call the Lake Kaweah main office at 597-2301.

Mineral King roadwork postponed

  Throughout Sequoia National Park this summer, a chip-seal application has been ongoing on various roads. Last week, it was announced that this maintenance project would occur on the Mineral King Road, which, due to the narrow, curving road, could have caused unexpected delays for travelers.
   However, the Park Service has since announced that this project will not proceed this year.
   The east Mineral King bridge project is still expected to commence on Monday, Sept. 12.  The bridge was deemed unsafe in July 2009 by the Federal Highways Administration.
   The bridge will be closed during construction. A temporary pedestrian and ATV-access bridge will allow access to the trailheads and cabins at road’s end.

Minutes matter, says TC Fire Department

  Rural residents are being reminded by the Tulare County Fire Department to have their address posted where emergency responders can see it. When it’s a matter of life or death, precious minutes can be wasted when the fire department cannot find the address to which they are being summoned.
   In Three Rivers, many homes are located off the main road and in many cases are hidden from the road. In addition, if it is dark or raining, a driveway can be even harder to find.
   Fire officials implore residents to post their address in an easily seen location at the entrance to the property with four-inch numbers placed on a contrasting background. For more information, contact the Three Rivers station at 561-4362.

Two NPS areas celebrate major milestones

  While the masses head to Yosemite and Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks, there are some lesser-known lands also administered by the National Park Service that offer adventure, scenery, history, and more.
   This year, Devils Postpile National Monument is celebrating 100 years. The significance of Devils Postpile was realized over a century ago when a Forest Service engineer rejected a proposal to blow up the Devils Postpile formation, calling it a “wanton destruction of scenery.”
   This set in motion not only the petitions to create a national monument to protect the postpile formation and Rainbow Falls, but also a movement to work in partnership as federal agencies, communities, and visitors to protect this remote and beautiful valley on the east side of the Sierra Nevada near Mammoth.
   Also east of here, but beyond the Sierra and into the Mojave Desert, is Joshua Tree National Park. Created in 1936 — first as a national monument and, in 1994, elevated to national park status — Joshua Tree celebrates 75 years in 2011. Not that big of a deal when one learns that humans have occupied the area today encompassed by Joshua Tree National Park for at least 5,000 years.
   Today the park protects 501 archaeological sites, 88 historic structures, 19 cultural landscapes, and houses 123,253 items in its museum collections.
   So if you ever find your way to the other side of the Sierra range, stop in and wish these sites “Happy Birthday.”

3R teammates contribute to

recent Visalia Rockettes championships

  The Visalia Rockettes have been around since 1955. To this day, the junior equestrian drill team is well-known and respected on the circuit.
   Currently, four Three Rivers teens are contributing to the success of the all-female team. The local girls, all of whom attend Woodlake High School, are Kacie Fleeman, Courtney Hanggi, Meg Johnson, and Alex Skeen.
   On August 5 and 6, the Visalia Rockettes competed in the California State Drill Team Championships, held at the Tulare County Fairgrounds. But this isn’t all the team has accomplished this summer. In addition to winning the state championship, the team also traveled to Nampa, Idaho, in July where they won the Idaho State Championship.
Based on their accumulated performance points during the 2011 season, the Visalia Rockettes have been named the California State 2011 Junior Division and overall Grand Champions.
   Coming up this month, the girls will head to Santa Rosa for the 2011 Western States Equestrian Drill Team Association’s Grand Championship Show. Held at the Sonoma County Fairgrounds, the teams in the Rockettes’ “junior division” will be required to ride both a short and freestyle program.
   These choreographed maneuvers are performed on horseback to music and include intricate patterns and precision showmanship, at times at breathtaking speeds. Drill teams entertain while demonstrating sportsmanship, horsemanship, teamwork, and dedication.
   The Visalia Rockettes junior equestrian drill team consists of girls ages 10 to 18. Horses on a drill team are usually of the same type; the Rockettes require team members to own or have access to a sorrel, chestnut, or bay horse and the prerequisite equipment. Members also have a uniform appearance, including outfits, hats, and tack.
   At competitions, a drill team is judged on ability, including spacing and alignment, timing and coordination, originality, difficulty, patterns, speed, horsemanship, uniformity, music, crowd appeal, and the behavior of the horses. In addition to the drill-team competitions, the team also rides in parades and performs at rodeos. Information: www.visaliarockettes.org

Living simply, sustainably

is focus of ‘Green Home Tour’

  Summer will soon end, which means the fifth annual Three Rivers Environmental Weekend is just around the corner. For the past five years, the first weekend of October has been reserved for the Greenfaire on Saturday, and on Sunday, the enjoyable and inspiring Green Home Tour.
   The home tour is part of the American Solar Energy Society’s annual National Tour, the largest grassroots event of its kind. To be included, homes must have either active or passive solar features.

Easy steps toward a ‘green home’
   Most of us have to live in the home we have, without the financial option to start all over and build the most energy efficient and environmentally sustainable home of our dreams.   However, it is rewarding and aesthetically pleasing to visit homes where that has been possible.
   Touring these homes can give us inspiration and ideas for the things we can do, and we can see them in practice. Some of these options are at the initial installment, some are not, and some may be free.
   Most will save money in the long run and certainly help the environment. Have you used any recycled parts, materials, or furnishings? Do you have low-flow toilets or installed a dual-flush conversion kit? Low-flow showerheads? Efficient light bulbs?
   Does your yard make use of native or dry-climate plants? Have you upgraded to more efficient appliances? Do you ever use a clothesline to dry clothes? Do you have an on-demand water heater?
   Do you make use of any passive solar ideas, like outdoor shades for summer, or deciduous trees for seasonal comfort to heat or cool the home as needed?
   Have you installed efficient windows, sealed air leaks, or added more attic insulation? Do you use a lot of indoor plants to naturally clean the air and give off oxygen?
   Do you compost? Grow a vegetable garden? Plant fruit or nut trees? Do you avoid use of pesticides and commercial fertilizers when possible? The list could go on and on.

Tours from the past
   The previous four home tours have included a variety of green building styles and ideas. The homes have used different construction methods and materials, and some also stressed the idea of the least disruption to the natural building site, the smallest carbon footprint use of construction materials and their transport, and the least building waste in construction.
Some have been large homes to accommodate the interests and needs of the occupants, and others have been purposefully small to reduce the carbon footprint, building costs, and/or property tax.
   Homes we have toured in the past have been constructed of rammed earth, natural stone, straw bale, insulated concrete forms, and adobe. They have included recycled telephone poles, recycled blue jean insulation, old wine tanks, used wood, driftwood doorway arches, and more. They have exhibited such concepts as heated floors, cooling towers, an insulating earth berm, wide overhangs, solariums, and strategic site placement.

Green Home Tour 2011
   This year’s tour features one passive solar design with excellent siting, wide overhangs, and a solarium. The exterior also includes beautiful gardens.
   The other four are active solar homes, and the photovoltaics of some supply all the electric power needed. Most have many other energy-saving features.
   One sits among the hills on a site that was of spiritual significance to the native Yokuts people. The home was built to respect that past by disrupting the landscape as little as possible. The house uses maximum insulation and was built using the Blue Max wall system — styrofoam blocks, inserted rebar, and pumped full of concrete.
   A previously existing home will be toured where the owners have upgraded the structure by installing five kilowatts of grid-tied photovoltaic and other energy-saving ideas.
   A Mediterranean-style home by the river has 11.2 kw/hr grid-tied capacity, supplying power for daily living usage, pump and filter for a swimming pool, and a pump for a water well. The beautiful home was thoughtfully planned and built to utilize every possible energy-saving feature.
   And, for the first time, a log home is a featured home on the tour. It is totally off-grid photovoltaic and energy-efficient. There are ceiling fans in every room and over the decks outside.
   The owners raise and can their own vegetables, compost, raise chickens, and build all sorts of useful things out of recycled materials. The pioneer spirit lives on, but today it’s called “green.”
   This year as in the past, the tours will raise funds to promote responsible building and development in Tulare County. Previously, recipients of the proceeds from the tour have included Habitat for Humanity’s Green Building Fund, Tulare County Citizens for Responsible Growth, Sierra Nevada Alliance, and the Sierra Club’s Kern Kaweah Chapter.
   Tours are 25 minutes at each of the five sites and must be reserved in advance. Two tours will embark: at noon and 1 p.m.
   Tours are $15 per person or $25 per couple. You can access information about the Environmental Weekend at http://threeriversvillage.com/trew.html
For more information and tour reservations, call 561-4676.


John Bybee
1956 ~ 2011

   John Charles Bybee of Exeter died in Visalia on Tuesday, Aug. 23, 2011, of cancer. He was 55.
   John was born May 20, 1956, in Palo Alto. He was a chef, working for many years in Three Rivers and Visalia.
   John was preceded in death by his parents, Herbert and Mary Bybee, and his brother, Gary.
   He is survived by his twin brother, Mark, of Visalia, sister Cathy Kulick of Mariposa, and brother Malcolm of Peabody, Mass.
   A memorial gathering will be held Sunday, Sept. 25, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., at the Exeter Women’s Clubhouse, 201 N. Kaweah Ave. (Highway 65), Exeter.
   Condolences may be sent to www.evansmillerguinnchapel.com.

Ricky Bowden
1954 ~ 2011

   Rick Lee Bowden of Three Rivers died Thursday, Sept. 1, 2011, of complications related to receiving a bite from a recluse spider.
Ricky was a carpenter.
   No services will be held and burial will be private. Condolences may be emailed to Visalia at info@salseranddillard.com.

THE KAWEAH COMMONWEALTH is published every Friday in Three Rivers, California.
EDITORS/PUBLISHERS: John Elliott and Sarah Barton Elliott
41841 Sierra Drive (Highway 198), Three Rivers, CA 93271
MAIL: P.O. Box 806, Three Rivers, CA 93271
(559) 561-3627 FAX: (559) 561-0118
© Copyright 2003-2011 The Kaweah Commonwealth