Tag Archives: Norco

More Students Qualify For Diplomas

Courtesy of Corona Norco Unified

 

Corona/Norco– On October 7, 2015, Governor Brown signed Senate Bill 172, suspending the administration of the California High School Exit Exam (CAHSEE) as a condition of receiving a diploma of graduation or a condition of graduation from high school. The bill provides for the granting of a diploma of graduation from high school to any pupil who completed grade 12 during the years in which the CAHSEE was in effect, and has met all applicable graduation requirements other than the passage of the high school exit examination. With the passage of this bill, the effective date of granting the diploma can be no earlier than January 1, 2016.

Please assist us in spreading the word and notifying former CNUSD students who may be eligible to receive their high school diplomas. The Corona-Norco Unified School District staff is committed to granting high school diplomas to all eligible persons. We are currently in the process of reviewing transcripts to verify that all graduation requirements of the senior year when you were enrolled.

If you or someone that you know are eligible to receive a Corona-Norco Unified School District high school diploma, submit it either online, or in person to the CNUSD Student Services Office, located at 2820 Clark Avenue, Norco, CA 92860. After the high school transcript is evaluated, and it is determined that you have fulfilled all graduation requirements, you will be notified and mailed the diploma to the address you provide. If you have questions, please call the Student Services office at 951-736-5111.

Tint Your Windows At Mr. Tint

Mr. Tint is conveniently located just minutes from Eastvale at 1780 Town and Country Drive, #104, in Norco (near the post office and DMV). Call them at (951) 737-7007 for more information, or visit their website at www.mrtint-ie.com.

Mr. Tint is conveniently located just minutes from Eastvale at 1780 Town and Country Drive, #104, in Norco (near the post office and DMV). Call them at (951) 737-7007 for more information, or visit their website at http://www.mrtint-ie.com.

Staff Reports

NORCO – Car window tinting is one of the best ways to improve the look and comfort of your vehicle. You can protect the interior of the vehicle from sun damage by tinting the windows. Sunlight and heat can cause your interior, like seats and the dashboard, to fade, crack and deteriorate. Window tinting reduces the sunlight allowed into the vehicle, which in turn reduces how hot it gets inside your car. Likewise, homes and offices heat up during the day, and trying to keep your air-conditioner ahead of the game can be costly.
Car window tinting also increases the value of your vehicle when done by professionals like Mr. Tint. Quality car window tinting and expert installation is essential for a professional tint job and maintaining a showroom-quality car.
Mr. Tint has a solution for autos, homes, and commercial buildings.  By tinting your windows, you can not only save up to 30% on your cooling costs with a significant decrease in heat, but you can reduce up to 99% of the UV rays that fade auto interiors, window coverings and furniture in your home and office.
There is one goal prevalent at Mr. Tint, and that is for their customers to be 100% satisfied.  They are focused on not only providing a superior product, but with offering competitive pricing alongside exceptional customer service.  Mr. Tint believes in treating the customer right in all aspects of their business.  By earning your loyalty, you will refer your family, friends and business associates, and come back time and again.
Family owned and operated, Mr. Tint offers free estimates and lifetime warranties.  With over 20 years of experience, the quality of their workmanship is second to none.  They are completely sure you will be satisfied, and invite you to see what other customers are saying on Yelp.com.
Business hours are Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.; and Saturdays, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.  Same-day service is available, and you can enjoy free beverages and Wi-Fi while you wait, or take advantage of their free shuttle service (within 10 miles).
Mr. Tint is conveniently located just minutes from Eastvale at 1780 Town and Country Drive, #104, in Norco (near the post office and DMV).  Call them at (951) 737-7007 for more information, or visit their website at http://www.mrtint-ie.com.  See their ad on page 5 of this publication.

Norco: Special Ed Art Exhibit Draws a Crowd

Courtesy of CNUSD

Courtesy of CNUSD

Courtesy of CNUSD

NORCO– The CNUSD Special Education Community Advisory Committee hosted their 11th annual art show at the District Office. This year’s theme was “My Imagination” and students created a variety of projects, including paintings, drawings, mixed media, sculpture, and transfer art.

The event drew parents, students and teachers and packed the room as they supported the students and their work. Each piece of art was given a number and attendees were asked to vote for their favorites in each age bracket (Preschool, K-2, 3-5, 6-8, High School, Transition). All participating students received a certificate for their work.

Students enjoyed a dinner courtesy of Chick-Fil-A Norco, Crusty’s Pizza, and Vito’s Pizza.  They were entertained by a magician and had the opportunity to take pictures with Disney’s Rapunzel and Belle.

A mixed media collage by William Karim, a fifth-grader at Prado View took top honors and was named “Best in Show”.

Corona-Norco Unified School District K-12 Teacher Job Fair

By Nicole Leiva

On Saturday, Jan. 30, from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m., the Corona-Norco Unified School District held a job fair to recruit teachers for kindergarten through high school. When the district announced the event, they advised teachers to visit EdJoin.org to complete an application before attending the fair.  Those who completed their applications on EdJoin.org were given numbers that allowed them admittance to the fair before those who had not yet completed their applications online.

Throughout the morning, teachers arrived every few minutes and joined an already lengthy line. Attendees made up a diverse pool; both experienced teachers and new, young teachers came from various parts of Southern California.

One woman is finishing her schooling in Idaho, and wants to come home to Southern California and teach arts in high school.  Another teacher, from Los Angeles, has taught 6th grade for fifteen years. She came to the job fair to compare pay wages. A teacher from the Inland Empire, with ten years of experience teaching math, wanted to consider her options with Corona-Norco Unified.

One attendee, who moved to the Inland Empire from Kentucky, taught high school math and English and led school activities at her last school.  She said, “I really love teaching and seeing the students thrive and that is why I am here today!”

A young male teacher who attended has great passion for teaching special education in high school, which he has done for two years. He proudly stated, “I love teaching special education and would be happy teaching at-risk students as well.” This young, incredibly positive teacher has the potential to change many young lives for the better.

The success of this job fair can be credited to Administrative Director Glen Gonsalves and all the staff that made this happen. Mr. Glen Gonsalves said “this was an exciting job fair and really pleased to see all these people.” Additionally, he said “this was a great way to showcase the District as a great place to teach and work…” Glen and his staff didn’t anticipate the amount of interest in their district and the teaching positions, and were happy to see the fair was such a success.

Free Tax Preparation for Community Members

Courtesy of City of Norco

 

NORCO  AARP volunteers are ready to assist you with tax preparation beginning February 2, 2016 through April 12, 2016 (on Tuesdays only), at the Rose M. Eldridge Senior Center.  Appointments are available from 9:00a.m. to 1:30p.m, Each appointment is about 45 minutes in length.  AARP has provided a checklist of documents to help prepare for your appointment.

AARP volunteers are trained in basic tax preparation and are only available to do basic returns. This service is open to anyone over 18 years of age.

To make an appointment and receive a copy of the check list, please come by the Rose M. Eldridge Senior Center at 2690 Clark Ave. in Norco, or call 951-270-5647.

 

Corona Norco Unified Puente Program

Selected by White House Initiative on Educational Excellence for Hispanics

 

Courtesy City of Eastvale

Norco – The White House on Educational Excellence for Hispanics has identified CNUSD’s Puente Program as a model program to be featured in their national online catalog. The national online catalog includes over 230 programs that invest in key education priorities for Hispanics.

The announcement was made by Alejandra Ceja, Executive Director of the Initiative on Sept. 15, at the launch of Hispanic Heritage Month and in honor of the Initiative’s 25th anniversary in Washington, D.C.

“There has been notable progress in Hispanic educational achievement, and it is due to the efforts of these Bright Spots in Hispanic Education, programs and organizations working throughout the country to help Hispanic students reach their full potential,” said Ceja.

Puente targets high school students earning Ds and Fs, and helps to turn their academic careers and futures around with mentoring, college partnerships, counselor interventions, parent participation and more. Existing at the three high schools with the largest Hispanic populations, the CNUSD Puente Program has helped to change the lives of more than 4,000 Hispanic students in its seven years of existence.

The Initiative seeks to leverage these Bright Spots to encourage collaboration between stakeholders focused on similar issues in sharing data-driven approaches, promising practices, peer advice, and effective partnerships, ultimately resulting in increased support for the educational attainment of the Hispanic community, from cradle-to-career. The Initiative was established in 1990 to address the educational disparities faced by the Hispanic community.

“We are honored to have the Puente Program selected by the White House Initiative on Educational Excellence for Hispanics,” said Superintendent Dr. Michael Lin. “CNUSD’s Puente Program was brought to the District under the leadership of Dr. Samuel Buenrostro, current Assistant Superintendent of Human Resources during his principalship at Centennial High School. We thank Dr. Buenrostro for bringing this exceptional program to CNUSD and congratulate him and the Puente Program for this recognition.”

To learn more about the Initiative and to view the Bright Spots in Hispanic Education national online catalog, visit www.ed.gov/HispanicInitiative.

Norco High – A Model Of Innovation

Staff Reports

Norco – Future Farmers of America selected Norco High as a finalist for the National Chapter Award Program Model of Innovation in the area of Student Development. Norco High joins an exclusive list of just ten schools nationwide to be nominated for this distinction.

Student development in Norco High’s Agricultural Program focuses on the creation of a Food Pantry, Supervised Agricultural Experience projects that build student skills in Animal Husbandry, Agriscience, Floral Design, and Horticulture; and finally, the $5 Challenge, a community service project.

Representatives of the program will travel to Louisville, KY in October to give a final presentation and interview. It will be televised on RFD-TV.

“We are honored and humbled to be among the select national 3 out of 3 star chapters in the National FFA Organization,” said Robin Grundmeyer, who teaches Floral Design at Norco High. “Of those nationally, we are proud to be considered a finalist for the model of innovation in the student category. Our students have worked hard in their service of the community and as advisors we are ecstatic to see the recognition of their hard work.”

Norco High continues to offer an excellent Agriculture Education Model that prepares students to become future leaders in the agriculture industry.

To read more, visit https://pulse.ffa.org/index.php/2015/08/10/finalists-2015-national-chapter-awards/Norco HS Agriculture Department

Competitive Coverage To Meet Your Family’s Needs

Melanie Smith-Rice of State Farm Insurance in Norco.

Melanie Smith-Rice of State Farm Insurance in Norco.

Staff Reports

Norco – At the Melanie Smith-Rice State Farm Office, 24-hour good neighbor service is at the forefront.  Smith-Rice is confident that she can meet your needs for all insurance and financial services, and promises to wow you with expert professional service.

A State Farm Agent since 1985 and a Corona resident since 1971, Smith-Rice understands the needs of the community and has worked hard to provide a palette of services that makes one-stop-shopping easy and affordable.  Along with Auto insurance, Smith-Rice provides Home Owners and Renters Insurance.

“A home is a big investment, so let’s make sure you have enough coverage at the right rate,” says Smith-Rice.  As well, protecting your personal property may be more affordable than you think.  “The average person has over $200,000 worth of stuff that is probably not covered under your landlord’s policy.  That’s where our State Farm Renters insurance comes into play,” she adds.

More important than the care of your property is the care of your family.  Along with Life Insurance, the Melanie Smith-Rice State Farm Office can provide various types of health insurance, including Long-Term Care should you become unable to care for yourself.

And for the business owner, Smith-Rice says, “I understand the needs of a business owner like you.  Together we can help protect your business and plan a roadmap for your financial future.

As if all this weren’t enough, the Melanie Smith-Rice State Farm Office can provide you with financial services such as Mutual Funds, Annuities, and even Banking (yes, Banking!), including Bank Accounts, Credit Cards, and Loans.

Don’t wait another minute to help ensure your family’s well being.  Call the Melanie Smith-Rice State Farm Office today, and get peace of mind in return.  A staff of professional experts is standing by at (951) 734-5290, or Toll-Free at (888) 734-5292.  They are located at 2027 River Road in Norco, in the Stater Bros. shopping center at Second Street and River Road.

Inland Empire: CNUSD Receives National School Safety Honor

Staff Reports

Corona/Norco – The Corona-Norco Unified School District’s Project Safety Net Program has been selected to receive the 2015 Exemplary School Safety Initiative Award by the School Safety Advocacy Council, a recognized leader in school safety based services and training. CNUSD will be honored at the National School Safety Conference on July 27, in Las Vegas, NV.

The Exemplary School Safety Initiative Award honors Districts nation-wide that have implemented programs that have had a significant impact in school safety and the community. The Project Safety Net Program serves over 53,000 students and their families in the District.

Under the outstanding leadership of Associate Superintendent of Instructional Support, Michael Cobarrubias, Project Safety Net was implemented in the summer of 2013 to ensure that each and every member of the school community experiences a safe and caring educational environment.

The overarching goal of Project Safety Net is to identify and anticipate safety concerns and systematically address each concern through the application of best practices. A key component to the success of the program is the development of innovative partnerships between the District and the Corona Police Department, the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department, students, parents and community organizations.

School safety is of paramount importance to CNUSD, and this accolade confirms the District’s ongoing commitment to keeping its campuses safe.

Cool Off Your Summer With Mr. Tint

Mr. Tint is conveniently located just minutes from Eastvale at 1780 Town and Country Drive, #104, in Norco (near the post office and DMV).  Call them at (951) 737-7007 for more information, or visit their website at www.mrtint-ie.com.

Mr. Tint is conveniently located just minutes from Eastvale at 1780 Town and Country Drive, #104, in Norco (near the post office and DMV). Call them at (951) 737-7007 for more information, or visit their website at http://www.mrtint-ie.com.

By K.P. Sander

Norco – The summer heat can cause the temperatures in your auto to soar.  You know what it’s like to try and get your scorching hot seatbelt fastened or even touch the steering wheel after your vehicle has been outside in the sun for any length of time.  Likewise, homes and offices heat up during the day, and trying to keep your air-conditioner ahead of the game can be costly.

Mr. Tint has a solution for autos, homes, and commercial buildings.  By tinting your windows, you can not only save up to 30% on your cooling costs with a significant decrease in heat, but you can reduce up to 99% of the UV rays that fade auto interiors, window coverings and furniture in your home and office.

There is one goal prevalent at Mr. Tint, and that is for their customers to be 100% satisfied.  They are focused on not only providing a superior product, but with offering competitive pricing alongside exceptional customer service.  Mr. Tint believes in treating the customer right in all aspects of their business.  By earning your loyalty, you will refer your family, friends and business associates, and come back time and again.

Family owned and operated, Mr. Tint offers free estimates and lifetime warranties.  With over 20 years of experience, the quality of their workmanship is second to none.  They are completely sure you will be satisfied, and invite you to see what other customers are saying on Yelp.com.

Business hours are Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.; and Saturdays, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.  Same-day service is available, and you can enjoy free beverages and Wi-Fi while you wait, or take advantage of their free shuttle service (within ten miles).

Mr. Tint is conveniently located just minutes from Eastvale at 1780 Town and Country Drive, #104, in Norco (near the post office and DMV).  Call them at (951) 737-7007 for more information, or visit their website at www.mrtint-ie.com.  See their ad on page 5 of this publication.

 

Norco: DUI/ Driver’s License Checkpoint Nets 4 DUI Arrests

Riverside County Sheriff’s Department

Norco  – The Riverside County Sheriff’s Department/Jurupa Valley Station/Norco Office conducted a DUI/Driver’s License checkpoint on July 11, 2015, at Hamner Ave. and Commerce St., between the hours of 8:00 p.m. and 3:00 a.m.  Checkpoints are placed in locations that have the greatest opportunity for achieving drunk and drugged driver deterrence and provide the greatest safety for officers and the public.

DUI/Driver’s License checkpoints have been shown to lower DUI deaths and injuries.  A major component of these checkpoints are the deterrent effects it has on those who might drive drunk or drug impaired, bringing about more awareness and encouraging everyone to use sober designated drivers.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), checkpoints have provided the most effective documented results of any of the DUI enforcement strategies, while also yielding considerable cost savings of $6 for every $1 spent.  Ninety percent of California drivers approve of checkpoints.

Checkpoint results:

  • 598 Vehicles through the checkpoint
  • 549 Vehicles screened
  • 4 DUI suspects arrested
  • 7 Drivers arrested for operating a vehicle unlicensed
  • 3 Drivers arrested for operating a vehicle on a suspended license
  • 2 Misdemeanor warrant arrests
  • 6 Vehicles towed

The Riverside County Sheriff’s Department/Jurupa Valley Station/Norco Office will be conducting additional DUI/Driver’s License Checkpoint throughout the year, in our ongoing commitment to lowering deaths and injuries upon our streets and highways.

The checkpoint was funded by a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety, through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.  Report Drunk Drivers – Call 9-1-1!

Details:

Norco, CA – The Norco Sheriff’s Office will be conducting a DUI/Driver’s License Checkpoint on July 11, 2015, at an undisclosed location within the city limits between the hours of 8:00 p.m. to 3:00 a.m.

The deterrent effect of Driving Under the Influence (DUI) checkpoints is a proven resource in reducing the number of persons killed and injured in alcohol or drug involved crashes. Research shows that crashes involving an impaired driver can be reduced by up to 20 percent when well-publicized DUI checkpoints and proactive DUI patrols are conducted routinely.

In California, this deadly crime led to 802 deaths in 2012 because someone failed to designate a sober driver. Nationally, the latest data shows nearly 10,000 were killed by an impaired driver.

Officers will be looking for signs of alcohol and/or drug impairment, as well as checking drivers for proper licensing.  Motorists should only be slightly inconvenienced. Specially trained officers will be available to evaluate those suspected of drug-impaired driving.

Recent statistics reveal 30 percent of drivers in fatal crashes had ingested one or more drugs.  A study of active drivers showed more tested positive for drugs that may impair driving (14 percent) than did for alcohol (7.3 percent). Marijuana was the most prevalent drug, at 7.4 percent, slightly more than alcohol.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), checkpoints have provided the most effective documented results of any of the DUI enforcement strategies, while also yielding considerable cost savings of $6 for every $1 spent. Nearly 90 percent of California drivers approve of DUI checkpoints.

DUI Checkpoints are placed in locations based on collision statistics and frequency of DUI arrests, affording the greatest opportunity for achieving DUI driving deterrence. Locations are chosen with safety considerations for the officers and the public.

Drivers caught driving impaired can expect the impact of the arrest to include jail time, fines, fees, DUI classes, and other expenses that can exceed $10,000.  The DUI arrest is public information and can expose the violator to a degree of public embarrassment.

Funding for this checkpoint is provided to the Norco Sheriff’s Office by a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety, through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, reminding everyone to “report drunk driver/call 911.”

Norco Astronomy Night 2015

Staff Reports

Norco – Come join the City of Norco Department of Parks, Recreation and Community Services and the Riverside Astronomical Society for a fun night of star gazing, and learn about the wonders of the night sky.

Astronomy Night 2015 will be held on Tues., June 23, at the Corydon Staging Area – directly across from Fire Station # 57 – on Corydon Avenue in Norco. The event will be from 8:30 to 10 p.m., and is free to the community.

Please note that the event may be subject to cancellation due to inclement weather.

For more information regarding this event, please call (951) 270-5632, or visit www.norco.ca.us.

Local Eastvale Boy Crowned Prince

“Corona-Norco Day of the Child”

Photo Courtesy:  Eastvale News Photo Caption:  (L to R) Rebecca Fransen, Jennifer and Nicholas Madrigal and Chris Gutman

Photo Courtesy: Eastvale News
Photo Caption: (L to R) Rebecca Fransen, Jennifer and Nicholas Madrigal and Chris Gutman

Staff Reports

Eastvale – Since 1992, local volunteers have been putting on an annual event called the “Corona-Norco Day of the Child.”  This is a free event for children and their families, along with over 80 local organizations that gather together to provide information on family resources throughout the Corona, Norco and Eastvale communities.   This year, the event was held at the Corona City Park.

Each year a special Prince and Princess are selected. These lucky children are nominated by their teachers and aides, and selected because they have truly proven themselves to be inspirations to their classmates, friends, families and teachers. These kids refuse to let their physical disabilities deter them from being active in their schools and communities.

This year’s Prince was Eastvale’s own Nicholas Madrigal, who attends Washington Elementary in Norco. Nicholas is 11- years old and has attended many of the schools in the Corona-Norco and Eastvale area; he has lived in Eastvale for his entire life.

Nicholas is deaf and autistic – along with a few other issues – however, he has an infectious smile and an unbelievable joy and thirst for learning. He has had the same aide, Chris Gutman, since pre-school, and he is currently in the class of Mrs. Rebecca Fransen.

Nicholas accepted the “coronation” award with Chris, Mrs. Fransen, and his mom and two older brothers watching.

A special thanks to all the volunteers, the Corona Fire Department, and especially to the Prince/Princess Coordinator, Dottie Richards. For more information on this event, check out their website at www.coronanorcodayofthechild.org

NORCO: Vehicle Theft Suspects Arrested

INFO. COURTESY RIVERSIDE SHERIFF’S DEPT.

Julie Stewart

Julie Stewart

Tayler Jenkins

Tayler Jenkins

On Tuesday, July 15, 2014, about 11:45 a.m., deputies assigned to the Jurupa Valley Station, Norco Sheriff’s Office, responded to the 2200 block of Vista Ridge in the city of Norco. This was in reference to a stolen vehicle investigation. Upon arriving, deputies located the stolen vehicle parked in the driveway of a residence. As the deputies continued with their investigation, they were able to locate and identify the suspects, who were found hiding in the residence.

The following suspects were arrested and booked into Robert Presley Detention Center:

Lawrence Piper – 30 years old – Possession of stolen property, burglary, & two felony warrants for Parole Violations.
Julie Stewart – 28 years old – Possession of stolen property, burglary, & a felony warrant for possession of controlled substance.
Tayler Jenkins – 23 years old – Possession of methamphetamine & Violation of probation.
The Norco Sheriff’s Office is committed to the safety of the citizens of Norco and is vigilant in combating crime. Anyone with information about this case can contact Deputy Nicholas Padilla #2781 at 951-270-5673.

NORCO: New Lieutenant Assigned to Norco PD

 

Information Courtesy of Riverside Police Dept.

NORCO: Effective June 26, 2014, Sheriff Stan Sniff appointed Lieutenant Eric Briddick to be the new dedicated lieutenant for the city of Norco Police Department. Lieutenant Briddick will be replacing Lieutenant Dan Hedge who is assuming command of the Sheriff’s Department Personnel Bureau.

Lieutenant Briddick was hired by the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department in 1990.  After completing the academy, he was assigned to the former Riverside Station, where he patrolled the unincorporated areas of Riverside County. In 1993, Lieutenant Briddick was reassigned to the contract city of Norco where he handled patrol, traffic enforcement, as well as Field Training Officer (FTO) duties. He also served on Norco’s Community Oriented Policing and Problem Solving Team.

In 2001, Lieutenant Briddick was promoted to Investigator within the Jurupa Valley Station where he conducted investigations involving crimes against persons and property. In 2002, Lieutenant Briddick was promoted to the rank of Sergeant and transferred to the Southwest Detention Center. In 2006, he was selected to join the Sheriff’s team responsible for the design, construction, and implementation of the County’s new public safety radio system, referred to as Public Safety Enterprise Communication (PSEC).

In 2009, Lieutenant Briddick was transferred to the city of Moreno Valley Police Department, where he worked a number of different assignments including patrol, watch commander, the Problem Oriented Policing (POP) team, and Administration. In 2012, Lieutenant Briddick was promoted to the rank of Lieutenant and transferred back to the PSEC Project, to oversee the successful completion and implementation of the project.

Lieutenant Briddick recently completed the Project Management course at the University of California, Riverside. Lieutenant Briddick is a long-time resident of the city of Norco where he currently lives with his wife and daughter.

Eastvale 4-2014

The Eastvale Community News covers local news for Eastvale, Norco, and Corona. Click this link 4-2014EastvaleAll and access the complete April issue in pdf format.

NORCO: Local War Hero’s Discuss Their Lives With JFK Students

BY TIANA GOEGEBUER

On Feb. 28, eleven veterans from World War II and the Korean War sat around tables with students from John F. Kennedy Middle College High School conversing about their lives and experiences. The veterans came from all walks of life and all lines of service. One of the veterans served as a medic, another as a pilot of a B-17 bomber, and yet another as a machine gun operator in the South Pacific.

WII Veterans speak with students.

WII Veterans speak with students. (Photo Courtesy: Corona Norco Unified School District)

John Busma, 96, was very popular with the students, as he had been stationed aboard the U.S.S. Medusa the day Pearl Harbor was attacked. He was 24 at the time, and had been assigned to the Medusa to work as a Machinist 1st Class. Busma had just finished eating breakfast of what had been christened as S.O.S.—also known by the crew as “$#*! On a Slate”—when the first bombs were dropped. “I heard the distinctive boom of the explosions from below deck, and hurried topside to see what was happening. I looked up at the sky, saw the rising suns painted on the planes, and shouted, ‘Close the ports! The Japanese are here!’” He went on to say that throughout that day, he served as a medic and tried to help the wounded. “I would sometimes look up at the sky and see the bullets flying through the air as we returned fire on the Japanese planes. I never saw air warfare like that again.”

The students were able to learn about more than just the war from the stories being told. After running away from an Indian reservation in Arizona in 1946, Alberto Calderon joined the Marines. While still in service, he visited a restaurant in Texas where he was denied service. “There was a sign that said that there would be no service to Indians or Mexicans. It didn’t matter that I was fighting for our country.” Calderon felt that it was important to share that story with the students so that they could see how far the nation had come in the short time since the 1950’s. He, and many of the other veterans, thought that it was more important to paint a picture in the minds of the younger generation of how much our nation has grown, instead of how it reacted in a time of war.

The veterans enjoyed telling students about their time in the service, but what they seemed to enjoy most of all was talking about their personal lives, both before and after the war. One even brought pictures of himself when he first enlisted, and of his wife when they were first married. Busma talked about his love of photography, how he had taken many photographs throughout the duration of his service, and how he was unable to take a picture of the most beautiful sunset he had ever seen because his camera was locked up below decks while out at sea. Warren Vanderlinden, 86, talked about how much he enjoyed going to medical school, how he lived in Washington State for most of his life, and how he had moved to California to be with his children and grandchildren as they grew up.

While each veteran had their own unique experience and background, the majority had very similar views about the past and what the current generations can learn from it. They encouraged the students to remember and learn from the past, to live in the present, and strive to make the world a better place in the future. Warren Vanderlinden left his group of students with an inspirational thought. “I loved—and still love—my life. I experienced as much as I could, took nothing for granted, and tried to make a difference. I hope that each one of you has the chance to do the same.”

NORCO: ANOTHER DELAY FOR SILVERLAKES EQUESTRIAN CENTER

By Jennifer Madrigal and K.P. Sander

Photo Courtesy: Google Images

Photo Courtesy: Google Images


Norco – Silverlakes Equestrian Sports Park, the highly anticipated 122-acre recreational facility that began development in 2007, has hit yet another roadblock. Financing for the park in Norco has been delayed as their latest financial backer has pulled out.

At a Norco City Council Meeting in December, Balboa Management Group Chief Executive Officer, R.J. Brandes, said he hoped construction would begin in early 2014 with the opening occurring six to nine months thereafter. However, at a Feb. 19 City Council meeting, Brandes informed the council that bank officials who had agreed to finance had withdrawn.

Silverlakes Equestrian Sports Park has been eagerly awaited for years and with the grand opening of Eastvale Community Park occurring on March 8, the barren field is even more of an eyesore. Silverlakes will be used for equestrian and sporting events, as well as dog shows, car shows, weddings, corporate and community events, circus performances, camping and more. Once completed, it will also join with nearly 120 miles of biking, jogging and equestrian trails.

The vacant land and unfinished project continue to be a source of controversy for both Eastvale and Norco residents. In a meeting back in October 2013, Norco Planning Commission member, Dave Henderson, and his wife Shirley, made a public presentation providing the facts on Silverlakes. Some key points were: $5.1 million was spent in 2012 when there was not authorization to spend above $3.7 million; water, sewer and road infrastructure were not in place; water/sewer municipal bond money appears to have been used for something else; and inspections were not made. With even more delays and no progress on what is now just vacant land with lots of dirt, many questions of poor planning have been raised.

So, will this project ever be completed? According to Brandes, at least two larger banks are considering financing the project and he is determined not to give up on this project until the deal is done. However, when questioned by Councilman Greg Newton at the Feb. 19 City Council meeting about a timeline for financing and construction, Brandes avoided answering.

According to a 2009 market analysis, Silverlakes (with an equestrian center capable of stabling and hosting world-class events, 25 soccer fields, a stadium field that can seat up to 5,000, an event center and picnic areas) could bring in over $35 million to Norco and attract over 550,000 visitors. These are funds that the City has been eagerly anticipating, especially since $5.7 million in water and sewer bond proceeds have already been released to the developer by the City.

The current situation involving Silverlakes Equestrian Sports Park continues to be waterlogged by a lack of funding, reimbursement legalities and general mistrust, but everyone involved still seems to remain hopeful that eventually the project will be completed.