The Farsider is an independent
publication that is not affiliated with the San Jose Police Benevolent
Assn. The SJPBA has allowed the Farsider to be included on its website solely for the convenience
of the retired San Jose Police community. The content of this newsletter does not represent or reflect
the views of the San Jose Police Benevolent Association's Board of Directors or its membership.
RETIRED OFFICER RAY WARD
Born Aug. 6, 1946
Appointed Sept. 1972
Retired Jan. 2002
Died May 8, 2017
Ray had been fighting type 2 diabetes for the past several years and succumbed on May 8th following a stroke. He was home at the time. We were unaware of his passing until earlier this week when Chaplain Allen was notified by Ray’s sister.
Following his retirement in 2002, Ray purchased a triplex in Manteca, moved into the rear unit and acted as property manager for the other two.
He was single and leaves behind his mother Barbara Officer, 92; a brother, Bill Ward; and a sister, Mickey Bush.
Ray had earlier purchased a plot in Sebastopol, where another sister who died in 1995 is buried and where his mother will rest when she passes on. Therein lies the tie between Manteca and Sebastopol. Ray served a tour in the Air Force prior to joining the SJPD. His ashes will be spread in the veterans’ portion of the cemetery.
The service is scheduled for 11 a.m. tomorrow, Friday the 19th, at the Pleasant Hill Mortuary, 1700 Pleasant Hill Rd., Sebastopol, (707-823-5042).
Post retirement photo of Ray, circa 2002
OFFICER MICHAEL LEWANDOWSKI
It is with a heavy heart that I write this notification. Yesterday, May 14th, we lost one of our Brothers here at SJPD. Officer Michael Lewandowski, Badge #4239, passed away after fighting Stage 4 Cancer for some time.
Mike was part of Academy 18 and was hired in September of 2012. He was only 37 years old. We WILL be strong and honor him and his family as the days follow.
Please keep Mike's wife and family in your thoughts and prayers. The family is still working on arrangements and your POA will update you on how you can help and reach out to the family once we get their wishes.
Rest in Peace Brother.
Paul Kelley, President, SJPOA
Michael Lewandowski, Badge 4239, EOW May 14, 2017
~ ~ ~
Michael Lewandowski Memorial Information
I have had the honor of being the Family Liaison to the Lewandowski family during this tough week. I wanted to share with you the details of the upcoming Memorial Service we have planned for Michael.
Service will be Thursday May 25 at 11 o'clock.
The service will be held at
Family Community Church,
478 Piercy Rd,
San Jose 95138.
will be a reception to follow at the
San Jose POA Hall, 1151 N 4th St, San Jose 95112
Michael's family requested to have
police attendees in Class A uniforms. They would also encourage any other
active or retired members of the US military to attend in their respective
In lieu of flowers, the family has asked for donations to help with costs of the service and hotel rooms for immediate family. Donations are being accepted by the SJPOA; cash, check (payable to the SJPOA) or credit cards.
Sgt. Tony Vizzusi#3714
Work Cell (408) 643-3890
CORRECTION TO LAST WEEK'S LIST OF SJPD's FALLEN
The link to Robert White's details was in error. Clicking on his name brought
up Richard Huerta's details. The error has been corrected. Clicking on Robert's
name will now bring up his details...
For details about our thirteen fallen — including the panel number on the Memorial
Wall in Washington, D.C. bearing their names — click on any of our heroes below...
Morris Van Dyck Hubbard
We spent last week and this weekend honoring those who served and died in the line of duty while we attended National Police Week in Washington D.C. The show of SJPD support for Michael Katherman's family and friends was constant and strong. We had our SJPD Officers ride for Mike in the Unity Tour and our Motors escort the group into the Capital. Horribly, there are now over 20,000 names of Police Officers who died in the line of duty since 1791. Below you will find some photographs of our time in Washington D.C., and you can count on many more in the June edition of the Vanguard.
Paul Kelley, President, SJPOA
THE TRIALS AND TRIBULATIONS OF SAN JOSE AND THE SJPD
Officer Cleared in 2016 Shooting
—Man, 45, was killed after attacking his estranged wife, friend—
By Robert Salonga <email@example.com>
Mercury News — May 17, 2017
SAN JOSE — Prosecutors say a San Jose police officer lawfully shot and killed a man in March 2016 moments after the man stabbed his estranged wife, fatally wounded her friend, and was slowly leaving the scene with knife still in hand. A domestic-violence restraining order had been secured against 45-year-old Byron Rosas when he went to his wife’s house near Second and Martha streets the evening of March 7, 2016, according to a report on the shooting released Tuesday by the Santa Clara County District Attorney’s Office.
Authorities say Rosas barged into the home and confronted his wife’s friend friend Richard Shane Fernandez, then followed Fernandez outside and stabbed him.
When Rosas’ wife tried to intervene, he stabbed her multiple times in the head and neck. Prosecutors say the wife and three bystanders wrestled the knife away from the man, but he “pulled out another large knife.”
As the wife fell to the ground, Officer Don Guess, who happened to be on patrol in the immediate area, responded to the emergency call to discover the grisly scene and witnesses directing him to the nearby — and still armed — Rosas.
Police say Guess gave several orders to Rosas, who was standing in the middle of Martha Street, to drop the weapon. Rosas reportedly took a few steps toward the officer but then turned around and made his way back to his wife’s home. Just then, Rosas’ daughter was emerging from the front door.
Rosas reportedly continued to ignore the officer and walk away, and when he turned toward an alley and began heading out of Guess’ line of vision, the 22-year SJPD veteran shot the knife-wielding man.
“When Officer Guess fired his weapon, it is clear he did so with the honest intent to protect himself and others in the area from being further injured by Byron Rosas: who was acting irrational, unpredictable, defiant and had just demonstrated an ability to kill,” Deputy District Attorney Christopher Walsh wrote in his report.
An investigation revealed that Rosas was hit by but withstood an initial volley of shots from Guess and continued to stagger away, and fell after the officer fired two more shots. Guess was the only officer on scene for the duration of the encounter.
Rosas’ wife, by then being cradled by her son, was rushed to the hospital and survived the attack.
Fernandez died 11 days later from stab wounds on his neck.
Several months before the deadly rampage, Rosas’ wife sought an emergency protective order after a Dec. 12, 2015 incident where Rosas reportedly punched her in the face with a closed fist just footsteps away from their daughter.
When Rosas went to SJPD headquarters three days later to accuse his wife of attacking him after learning her intentions to divorce him, he was arrested on a felony domestic-violence warrant.
When Rosas was killed, he had an active temporary domestic-violence restraining order issued against him, set to expire a week later.
The prosecutors’ report was unequivocal in backing Guess’ actions that day.
“Officer Guess’s use of deadly force was justified in response to an apparent and immediate threat of great bodily injury or death to himself, and to numerous bystanders,” Walsh wrote.
I want to thank you for again publishing the list of fallen/departed officers from SJPD. As I read the entire list certain names would immediately bring back poignant memories involving those officers. These memories would involve deeds which showed the human side of police work, funny incidents (or at least we thought they were funny at the time), and great arrests by the regular beat cops because that was part of their job. I truly enjoyed my time (1965-1978) with the San Jose Police Department as it was probably the finest agency in the U.S. at that time. We had a minimum college requirement and a great FTO (Field Training Officer) program which produced some excellent patrol officers. Thanks again for the memories.
Bruce Fair, 1965-1978, Sgt. #1169 <firstname.lastname@example.org>
• • • • •
If you choose to pass this song along to your readers I’m 99 percent sure you will try and find one that zings the other side of the aisle to show you are fair and balanced (kiss kiss!). But that’s OK, because I don’t think you will find a Democratic country-western singer who is any good.
Red State <RedState70@comcast.net>
Do I hear a challenge? OK, Red, here’s YOUR song that is titled “I Think My Dog is a Democrat.” (3:48)
Red was right. We couldn’t find a song by a country-western singer that zings the Republicans. The closest we could find that meets that criteria is THIS ditty from the TV show “Family Guy.” It dates back to 2012 which, in some respects, seems like yesterday. Have a look and listen. (2:24)
• • • • •
It’s not every day that a letter authored by a card-carrying conservative makes the Letters Page of our left-of-center local newspaper, but against all odds, this one did. Congratulations, Pete. Now go out and buy a lottery ticket to see if you are still on a roll…
Mercury News Letters Page, May 17, 2017
In Capitalist Society, Health Care is Not a Right
I would like to point out some issues and questions pertaining to the “right” of health care for all.
Good-hearted people and many educators tell the young and others that health care is a right and not a privilege. Where would we stop? If everyone was provided a home they would then be safer, healthier and eventually need less health care.
That would be a benefit and could be considered a right.
Let’s be honest here. We are talking socialism vs. capitalism. Could it be that many of our parents and educators have failed in their responsibility of preparing the youth to provide for themselves?
Is the best solution to have the government/citizens do the job that the educators and parents failed to do and have future generations continue to depend on their fellow citizens to provide for them?
Peter T. Guerin, San Jose
~ ~ ~
Uh oh. Looks like we have a Gilroy resident who disagrees with Pete. This missive to the editor of the paper appeared in today’s (Thursday’s) edition…
Health Care Challenge is Driven by Extortion
I disagree with Peter T. Guerin’s premise that the reason health care is unavailable to many is because of a failure of parents and educators to prepare youth to provide for themselves (Letters May 17).
Medical care has increased at triple the rate of inflation over the past three decades, while workers’ earnings have stagnated.
The lifesaving drug, EpiPen has gone from $100 for a two pack in 2009, to $608, raising ethical questions. One of the new cancer immunotherapies would cost $1 million per year per patient, according to one expert. This problem is not caused by a lack of preparation and is not capitalism. It is extortion.
Warren Seifert, Gilroy
MAY’S BIRTHDAY BOYS…
who attended last night’s general membership meeting AND were celebrating a May
birthday included (L-R) Darrel Cortez; Carroll Blackstock; Tom McCready; Bill Erfurth; Bill Silva;
Bill Waggoner; and Ted Vasquez. In the absence of Aubrey Parrott, Chaplain
Allen was pressed into service as photographer for the evening.
FBI RELEASES 2016 PRELIMINARY STATISTICS FOR LINE OF DUTY DEATHS
May 16, 2017
Preliminary statistics released today by the FBI show that 66 law enforcement officers were feloniously killed in the line of duty in 2016. This is an increase of 61 percent when compared with the 41 officers killed in 2015. By region, 30 officers died as a result of criminal acts that occurred in the South, 17 officers in the West, 13 officers in the Midwest, four in the Northeast, and two in Puerto Rico.
At the time the 66 law enforcement officers were fatally wounded:
• 17 were ambushed (entrapment/premeditation);
• 13 were answering disturbance calls (seven were domestic disturbance calls);
• Nine were investigating suspicious persons/circumstances;
• Six were engaged in tactical situations;
• Five were performing investigative activities;
• Four were conducting traffic pursuits/stops;
• Three were investigating drug-related matters;
• Three were victims of unprovoked attacks;
• One was answering a robbery in progress call or pursuing a robbery suspect(s);
• One was answering a burglary in progress call or pursuing a burglary suspect(s);
• Four were attempting other arrests.
Offenders used firearms in 62 of the 66 felonious deaths. These included 37 incidents with handguns, 24 incidents with rifles, and one incident with a shotgun. Four victim officers were killed with vehicles used as weapons.
Of the 66 officers killed, 50 were confirmed to be wearing body armor at the times of the incidents. Fourteen of the 66 slain officers fired their service weapons, and 10 officers attempted to fire their weapons. Three victim officers had their weapons stolen; one officer was killed with his own weapon.
The 66 victim officers died from injuries sustained in 56 separate incidents. Fifty-four of those incidents have been cleared by arrest or exceptional means.
In 2016, an additional 52 officers were killed in line-of-duty accidents, which are officer deaths that were found not to be willful and intentional. This is an increase of 16 percent when compared with the 45 officers who were accidentally killed in 2015. By region, 24 officers died from accidents in the South, 12 in the Midwest, nine in the West, five in the Northeast, and two in Puerto Rico.
Twenty-six of the officers died as a result of automobile accidents, 12 were struck by vehicles, and seven were fatally injured in motorcycle accidents. Three officers died in accidental shootings, two victim officers drowned, one died in an aircraft accident, and one victim officer was fatally injured when thrown from a horse.
Of the 26 officers who died due to automobile accidents, eight were wearing seat belts. Eleven officers were not wearing seat belts (five of whom were partially or totally ejected from the vehicles), and seatbelt use was not reported for seven of the officers who were killed in automobile accidents.
Final statistics and complete details will be available in the Uniform Crime Reporting Program’s publication, Law Enforcement Officers Killed and Assaulted, 2016, which will be published on the FBI website in the fall.
SEATTLE PD PUSHING POLITICAL CORRECTNESS TO THE EXTREME
If you make a collar in Seattle for murder, rape, robbery, whatever, you must now refer to the offender in the police report as a “Community Member,” not a Suspect. Just as screwy is new terminology for prisoners and offenders in jails and prisons. They must now be referred to as “Students” or “Patients.” What may sound like a 45-day old April Fool joke isn’t. This is the real deal…
This LINK will take you to a news report about the change in verbiage, or you can read the text below that was transcribed from the video.
Member' Term for Suspects on Seattle Police Use of Force Reports
By Casey McNerthney and Amy Clancy — Staff Writers
KIRO TV Channel 7 — May 9, 2017
When Seattle police officers write use of force reports they no longer call a suspect a suspect.
“Community member” is the new term. Several officers say the term is offensive, explaining their work with violent suspects.
Sources point to the suspect who shot three officers last month after a downtown Seattle armed robbery. When officers involved in that incident were writing their use of force reports they were required to refer to the shooter, Damarius Butts, as a “community member,” not a suspect, police sources said.
Police fatally shot Butts after they said he shot the officers.
“I think this is all in an effort to make sure our report writing sounds politically correct,” Seattle Police Officers' Guild Kevin Stuckey told KIRO 7.
The online use of force reporting system, called Blue Team, is used for more than just use of force reports. It also tracks the department’s administrative investigations and the Early Intervention System among other reports. A photo sent to KIRO 7 shows the Blue Team in a recent online department training.
The “community member” terminology changed for multiple forms – but it’s only in the use of force reports that officers find offensive.
“The change appears to be part of a routine update by the software developer, which services more than 600 law enforcement agencies worldwide,” department spokesman Jonah Spangenthal-Lee said. “The department’s force review section has not received any inquiries about the change.”
Changes after DOJ oversight
Department policy restricts officers and other department members from speaking to reporters without a supervisor’s approval, so multiple officers spoke to KIRO 7 to provide background. Kevin Stuckey, the Seattle Police Officers' Guild president who can speak publicly, said he believes the term "community member" is too vague.
“I don’t think you should have a broad stroke like that and call everybody the same thing,” he said. “I don’t think there’s anything wrong with calling someone who is a victim a victim, or calling someone who’s a suspect a suspect.”
Seattle Police Chief Operating Officer Brian Maxey said the changes are purely for accuracy. Labeling someone a suspect can sometimes be misleading if they are not suspected of anything.
At least through 2010, use of force forms used the terms suspect and subject. Blue Team was adopted after Department of Justice oversight of the department and the term “citizen” was coined for use-of-force reports. Now, the acceptable term is “community member.”
“Similarly, we don't know or inquire about citizenship status, so labeling someone a citizen is arbitrary,” Maxey said in an email.
“Neither term is confusing at all.”
So when do police use force on a suspect who is not suspected of violating a law?
“Doing a building search or responding to an alarm with guns drawn is an example, department spokesman Sean Whitcomb wrote in an e-mail.
“We might contact individuals who are not suspects, but rather subjects. Approaching someone at gun point is Type 1 force, and must be reported.”
Whitcomb and others didn’t specify how long someone at gunpoint has been a reportable use of force or when Type 1 use of force designations were first used.
Officers told KIRO 7 that Type 1 use of force designations came with the Department of Justice oversight, and pointing a gun at a person in such a scenario did not previously require a use of force report.
Department of Corrections made similar change
Changes in terminology are nothing new in Washington, and Whitcomb said “the words are synonymous and commonly used throughout the law enforcement profession.”
Last fall, the Washington Department of Corrections stopped calling inmates “offenders” and instead use the term “student.”
“The term ‘offender’ does have a negative connotation and significantly impacts a broad group of people and communities,” Acting DOC Secretary Dick Morgan wrote in an internal department memo, obtained by KIRO 7.
“Times change, and so does our language.”
However, that means Gary Ridgway -- the most prolific American serial killer who said he has at least 71 victims -- is no longer called an inmate or an offender. Neither are other murderers, rapists and felons.
The phase-out of the word “offender” started Nov. 1 and replaced with “individuals,” “student” or “patient,” the DOC secretary wrote to his staff. Use this link to read the full DOC memo.
“It takes time to change habits but I encourage all of you to make an effort,” Morgan wrote in the memo last fall. “Start by referring to individuals by their names (if you don’t already), practice replacing or removing the word ‘offender’ from your communication and presentation to others.”
In Seattle regarding use of force incidents, Stuckey, the guild president, said he plans to bring up the language concerns to command staff.
“I guess a community member could be the person who breaks into your car and breaking into your home or harms you or your child,” he said. “But who are we talking about?”
COULD THIS CREATE A FLURRY OF VANDALIZED CARS?
Some people are such fervent disciples of the pro-life and pro-choice movements that we would wager that a vanity license plate touting either belief would be a hot seller, but the cop in us also thinks it could lead to cars getting vandalized by some short tempered pro-lifers. Whatever the case, it looks like pro-choice Californians may be able to purchase such a vanity plate in the future since its issuance would have to be approved by the State Legislature where two-thirds of the members are Democrats. On the other side of the coin, don’t look for the legislature comprised of one third Republicans to approve a pro-life vanity plate anytime soon, even if there was an effort to get one approved. No one ever pretended that California politics was fair!
Unveiled for ‘Pro-Choice’ Plates
—Senator’s proposal needs governor’s OK, 7,500 pre-orders—
By Tracy Seipel <email@example.com>
Mercury News — May 17, 2017
SACRAMENTO — Incensed by federal antiabortion policies mapped out by President Donald Trump and the Republican Congress, a California legislator is helping to steer a new course with a proposed “pro-choice” license plate.
State Sen. Hannah-Beth Jackson, D-Santa Barbara, and NARAL Pro-Choice California on Monday unveiled three designs for a “California Trusts Women” plate that could be created through Jackson’s Senate Bill 309, which is now moving through the state Legislature.
Sen. Hannah-Beth Jackson unveils three designs for proposed
pro-choice license plates. The license plate would cost $50 in
the first year and less in subsequent years.
“SB 309 will provide a way for Californians who are deeply troubled by the federal attack on women’s rights and health care to take their values ‘to the street’ while providing a vital funding mechanism for California’s network of reproductive health care providers,” Jackson said in a statement. The license plate would cost $50 in the first year and less in subsequent years. It would raise funds for the Family Planning, Access, Care, and Treatment Program, which provides family planning services to 1.8 million Californians every year.
The license plates would become available only if the bill is passed by the Legislature and is signed by Gov. Jerry Brown. In addition, the Department of Motor Vehicles would have to receiving 7,500 paid “pre-orders” for the plates.
Jackson and women’s rights groups are urging Californians to jump on the wagon now by pledging to purchase a plate and voting on their favorite plate design at <www.californiatrustswomen.com>.
The winning design would be announced later this year.
The idea isn’t new: Virginia, for example, already has a license plate that reads “Trust Women, Respect Choice.” But that state — and at least two dozen others — also offers an antiabortion license plate that reads “Choose Life” and can be purchased for $25 to $70 on top of standard fees.
The Guttmacher Institute, a leading research and policy organization that advances sexual and reproductive health and rights in the U.S. and globally, notes that in some cases money from the sale of the “Choose Life” plates directly supports the activities of antiabortion organizations or crisis pregnancy centers. The institute’s website says those groups often provide “biased and medically inaccurate counseling to women seeking a pregnancy test or counseling with regard to an unintended pregnancy.”
In other cases, the website says, funding goes to organizations that provide services related to adoption. Many of the states with “Choose Life” license plates, it says, also explicitly prohibit organizations that offer a full range of services, including abortion counseling or referral, from receiving the funds.
Wynette Sills, director of Californians for Life, an anti-abortion Sacramento-based group that she said numbers at least 10,000 members around the state, would like to see that kind of plate made available in the Golden State.
But Sills acknowledged that it’s “an impossibility — barring a miracle” for Californians “because of the pro-abortion position of two-thirds of our state legislators.”
STORIES OF THE WEEK
Thinking of relocating?
Fed up with the congestion of Silicon Valley? Thinking of moving out of the Bay Area to get away from the traffic and the hordes of people? Several retirees have moved to Nevada, Arizona, and even to the desert area of Coachella Valley that includes Palm Springs and Palm Desert. Before you begin packing your household goods and calling a realtor and listing your home, however, we suggest you read the following diary from one of our retirees who took the plunge last year…
May 30th: Just moved to the Coachella Valley. Now this is a place that knows how to live! Beautiful sunny days and warm balmy evenings. What a place! It is beautiful. I've finally found my home. I love it here.
June 14th: Really heating up. Got to 100 today. Not a problem. Live in an air-conditioned home, drive an air-conditioned car. What a pleasure to see the sun everyday like this. I'm turning into a sun worshipper.
June 30th: Had the backyard landscaped with western plants today. Lots of cactus and rocks. What a breeze to maintain. No more mowing the lawn for me. Another scorcher today, but I love it here.
July 10th: The temperature hasn't been below 100 all week. How do people get used to this kind of heat? At least it's kind of windy. But getting used to the heat is taking longer than I expected.
July 15th: Fell asleep by the community pool. Got 3rd degree burns over 60 percent of my body. Absolutely miserable. What a dumb thing to do. I learned my lesson though. Got to respect the ol' sun in a climate like this.
July 20th: I missed seeing Lomita (my cat) sneak into the car when I left this morning. By the time I got to the hot car at noon, Lomita had died and swollen up to the size of a shopping bag and stank up the upholstery. The car now smells like Kibbles and crap. I learned my lesson though. No more pets in this heat.
July 25th: This wind sucks. It feels like a giant freaking blow dryer! And it's still hotter than hell. The home air-conditioner is on the fritz and the AC repairman charged $200 just to stop by and tell me he needed to order some parts.
July 30th: Been sleeping outside on the patio for 3 nights now. $600,000 house and I can't even go inside. Why did I ever come here?
Aug. 4th: It's 115 degrees. Finally got the air-conditioner fixed today. It cost $700 and only gets the temperature inside the house down to 90. I hate this stupid place.
Aug. 8th: If another wise ass cracks, 'Hot enough for you today?' I'm going to shoot him in the head. Damn heat. By the time I get to the grocery store the car radiator is boiling over, my clothes are soaking wet, and I smell like baked cat!
Aug. 9th: Tried to run some errands today. Wore shorts, and when I sat on the seats in the car, I thought my ass was on fire. I lost 2 layers of flesh and all the hair on the back of my legs and ass. Now my car smells like burnt hair, fried ass, AND a baked cat.
Aug. 10th: The weather report might as well be a damn recording. Hot and sunny. Hot and sunny. Hot and sunny. It's been too hot to do (crap) for two damn months in a row, and the weatherman says it might really warm up next week. Doesn't it ever rain in this damn desert? Water rationing will be next, so my $1,700 worth of cactus will just dry up and blow away. Even the cactus can't live in this damn heat.
Aug. 14th: Welcome to HELL! Temperature got to 120 degrees today. Forgot to crack the window and blew the damn windshield out of the car. The installer came to fix it and said, "Hot enough for you today?" My sister had to spend $3,000 to bail me out of jail. Freakin' Southern California. What kind of a sick demented idiot would want to live here? Will write later to explain how the trial goes.
(That was the last entry.)
• • • • •
This item is about epitaphs allegedly found on headstones in Mississippi cemeteries...
Harry Edsel Smith of Sandersville, Mississippi:
Born 1903 -- Died 1942
Looked up the elevator shaft to see
if the car was on the way down.
In a Soso, Mississippi cemetery:
Here lies an Atheist
All dressed up
And no place to go.
In a Laurel, Mississippi cemetery:
Here lies Ann Mann,
Who lived an old maid
But died an old Mann.
Dec. 8, 1867
In a Cracker's Neck, Mississippi cemetery:
The children of Israel wanted bread,
and the Lord sent them manna.
Old clerk Wallace wanted a wife,
and the Devil sent him Anna.
In an Errata, Mississippi cemetery:
Here lies Johnny Yeast.
For not rising.
In an Ellisville, Mississippi cemetery:
Here lies the body of Jonathan Blake.
Stepped on the gas
Instead of the brake
In a Sharon, Mississippi cemetery:
Here lays Conn Welborn.
We planted him raw.
Quick on the trigger
But slow on the draw.
A lawyer's epitaph in Laurel, Mississippi:
Here lies an honest lawyer
And that is Strange
John Penny's epitaph in a Jones County, Mississippi cemetery:
Reader, if cash you are in need of any,
Dig 6 feet deep;
You'll find a Penny.
In a cemetery in Hawkes, Mississippi:
On the 22nd of June,
Went out of tune.
Anna Hopewell's grave in 6-deep Cemetery, North Jones County, Mississippi:
Here lies the body of our Anna
Done to death by a banana.
It wasn't the fruit that laid her low,
But the skin of the thing that made her go.
On a grave from the 1880s in Moselle, Mississippi:
Under the sod and under the trees,
Lies the body of Jon Earl Pease.
He is not here, there's only the pod.
Peas shelled out and went to God
In a cemetery in Tucker's Crossing, Mississippi:
Remember now, as you pass by,
Like you are now, so once was I.
As I am now, you soon will be.
Prepare yourself to follow me.
(To which someone replied by scribbling on the tombstone:)
To follow you I won't consent
Until I know which way you went
In the Moore Family cemetery in Shady Grove, Mississippi:
Here lies Lester Moore
One slug from a 44
1885 -- 1921
I told you I was sick!
• • • • •
Then there’s this variation of a somewhat similar theme…
A Quick and Easy Swap
A man who just died was delivered to the mortuary wearing an expensive, expertly tailored black suit. The mortician asked the decedent's wife how she would like the body dressed. He pointed out that the man looks good in the black suit he is already wearing.
The widow, however, said she always thought her husband looked best in blue, and that she wants him in a blue suit. She gives the mortician a blank check and says, "I don't care what it costs, but please have my husband in a blue suit for the viewing."
The woman returned the next day for the wake. To her delight, she found her husband dressed in a gorgeous blue suit with a subtle chalk stripe. The suit fit him perfectly. She said to the mortician, "Whatever this cost, I'm very satisfied. You did an excellent job, and I'm very grateful. How much did you spend?"
To her astonishment, the mortician gave her back her blank check. "There's no charge" he said.
"No, really, I must compensate you for the cost of that exquisite blue suit."
"Honestly, ma'am," the mortician replied, "it didn't cost anything. A deceased gentleman about your husband's size was brought in shortly after you left yesterday, and he was wearing an attractive blue suit. I asked his wife if she minded him going to his grave wearing a black suit instead, and she said it made no difference as long as he looked nice...so I just switched heads."
THE BEST OF THE LATE NITE JOKES
May 10 — 15
May 10: Yesterday, Donald Trump fired the director of the FBI, James Comey, and I guess Comey heard about it right before a recruitment event he was going to speak at. Then he was like, “Hey, while I’m recruiting — anyone wanna be director? It just came up. I just got the email.”
They’re also saying when he got the news, Comey thought it was a prank and started laughing. But to be fair, that’s also how Trump reacted when he won the election. “That’s very good — where’s Ashton Kutcher? I love that guy!”
Of course, it drew immediate reactions from other politicians. When she heard Comey was fired, Hillary called him and said, “Aw, did someone take away a job that was rightfully yours? Ah, too bad!”
Melania Trump will join Donald on his first trip overseas as president. Melania said she’s a little nervous for the trip because it’s always hard traveling with a baby.
I read about a coffee shop in Toronto that doesn’t have any Wi-Fi to encourage customers to talk to each other. Although all the customers talk about now is how they should really get Wi-Fi in this coffee shop.
May 11: The big story still is Trump firing FBI Director James Comey, and it turns out Comey had six years left on his 10-year term. It’s easier to get out of your FBI contract than it is your AT&T contract.
In the middle of all this, Trump met with the Russian foreign minister yesterday and the White House says Russia tricked them by posting photos of the meeting. Got suspicious when the photographer told Trump, “OK, now do silly one when you hold up nuclear codes.”
The next season of “Scandal” will be its last. ABC is ending “Scandal.” Fortunately, the White House picked it up for four more seasons.
Mother’s Day is this weekend. Happy Mother’s Day to all the moms out there. I saw that a strip club in Las Vegas is offering a dinner special. When asked what they do for Father’s Day, the strippers said, “What are fathers?”
Blue Cross is partnering with Lyft to give people rides to the doctor. It costs $600. The drivers are specially trained, and — it’s just an ambulance.
May 15: President Trump gave a commencement speech at Liberty University on Saturday and he said, “Always have the courage to be yourself and chase your dreams.” Then he stopped talking because he ran out of fortune cookies.
I guess there was one awkward moment during the speech when Trump said that there are more job openings than ever. And the students said, “Yeah, ’cause you keep firing everyone.”
Yesterday, 39-year-old Emmanuel Macron became the youngest president in French history. You can tell he’s young ’cause after they swore him in, his first words in his speech were, “So, that just happened.”
American Airlines says it’s getting rid of seat-back TV screens, because most people bring a device with them. While United’s doing the same thing on their flights, because most people just watch the live entertainment.
Two people in Arkansas were arrested for stealing $5,000 worth of Little Debbie snack cakes. They were charged with theft and I assume possession of weed.
May 10: Today, Russian President Vladimir Putin said he had nothing to do with the firing of FBI Director James Comey. Putin said, “How could I? He’s still alive, isn’t he?”
Today, President Trump promised to bring back “the spirit and prestige of the FBI.” Trump said, “When I’m arrested, I want to be arrested by the very best.”
Yesterday, FBI Director James Comey got a letter from President Trump informing him that his services were no longer needed. After hearing this, Melania Trump said, “I would kill for one of those letters.”
It’s come out that in the days before the Comey firing, Donald Trump would often scream at cable TV. He would usually yell, “YOU’RE not the Cake Boss — I’M the Cake Boss!”
Analysts are saying that last night’s events could be “the beginning of the end for Donald Trump.” Oh wait, I’m sorry, this joke is from a monologue I did last year.
After news of the Comey firing broke last night, Press Secretary Sean Spicer avoided reporters by hiding behind a bush outside the White House. Today, Bill Clinton said, “Oh yeah, I remember that bush.”
May 10: The fallout continues after the surprise firing of FBI Director James Comey yesterday. Apparently Comey was in Los Angeles and found out that he was fired when he saw it on television. Which basically means Trump fired the head of the FBI the same way he fired Gary Busey — on television.
Can you imagine finding out you lost your job like that? I mean, I get [ticked off] when I find out about “Game of Thrones” spoilers.
Now of course President Trump spoke about the backlash. He gave a very calm and measured interview to NPR. I’m kidding! He fired off a string of angry tweets.
This morning he attacked his critics on Twitter and in one tweet referred to Sen. Chuck Schumer as Cryin’ Chuck Schumer. Now you remember he does this, there was also Lyin’ Ted Cruz and Crooked Hillary. I’m starting to think the only job Trump is really qualified for is coming up with catchy stage names for professional wrestlers.
The whole administration is facing questions about this firing. After reporters were hounding Press Secretary Sean Spicer for comments, he did what any professional White House press secretary would do: He hid in the bushes.
Think about that for a second — a grown man hiding in the bushes from doing his job. That’s like when I hide in the gym toilets to avoid my personal trainer. “Get your feet up, he won’t know I’m in here!”
May 11: Today Donald Trump signed an executive order to establish a commission to investigate voter fraud. Trump says that he and his commission want to make sure every American gets a vote, and that every Russian gets two.
Trump claims he would have won the popular vote if there hadn’t been voter fraud but there is absolutely no proof of that. We are now just creating commissions to prove Trump’s dumb theories. I can’t wait for the report from the Senate commission on “But No Seriously, Meryl Streep Is Overrated.”
In other Trump news, in an interview with The Economist published today, Trump said he might release his tax returns one day, once he’s out of office. So if we want to see those tax returns, all we have to do is get him out of office. Let’s see if we can speed that up!
He says he’s going to do the right thing but after the fact. That’s like saying I’m going to put a condom on right after the baby is born.
Now Trump’s exact quote about his tax return was, “Oh, at some point I’ll release them. Maybe I’ll release them after I’m finished because I’m very proud of them, actually, I did a good job.” Who talks about their tax forms like that? We want him to release his taxes, but at this point, I’d settle for him releasing his high school diploma.
In that same interview while talking about the economy, Donald Trump used the common phrase “prime the pump,” and he then went on to say — these are his actual words — “Have you heard that expression used before? Because I haven’t heard it. I came up with it a couple of days ago and I thought it was good. It’s what you have to do.”
Later — this is absolutely true — Merriam-Webster Dictionary tweeted this at the president: “‘Pump priming’ has been used to refer to government expenditures since 1933.” But trump’s not worried about criticism over this. He says that he faced the same backlash when he invented the term “on fleek.”
Now think about this: The dictionary is mad at Trump. But this is isn’t the first time he’s had trouble with books. You remember his inauguration when he put his hand on that Bible and it burst into flames?
Although Trump doesn’t get credit for creating the term “prime the pump,” he has created lots of other things. He has, for example, created Sean Spicer’s ulcers, soaring stock prices for Xanax, and he created — let’s not forget — he created lots of jobs for his kids.
May 15: Over the weekend, the world’s biggest-ever cyber attack spread around the globe infecting 150 countries. It’s pretty horrifying. Computers have been totally destroyed. In some cases, in extreme cases, people were forced to have actual face-to-face conversations. It was a nightmare.
The virus involved in the attack is called ransomware and it locks up your computer and tells you that you can unlock it by paying the hackers $300. Which is kind of insulting when you think about it, when the hackers are like, “If you want your life back, you give us … $300.” That’s it? That’s all I’m worth? My life, $300?
Now this was interesting: The virus was stopped by a computer security expert who is only 22 years old. It is incredible. It’s the first time a 22-year-old guy has stopped a virus without putting ointment on it.
It’s prom season right now, and at a prom in Memphis, Tenn., the rapper Drake made an appearance attending the event with his cousin and her date. Kind of a mixed bag though, because on one hand you came to the prom with Drake. On the other hand you came to the prom with your cousin.
According to the Social Security Administration, the fastest growing boy’s name in 2016 was Kylo, after Kylo Ren, the main villain in the “Star Wars” film “The Force Awakens.” I guess villains are popular right now. Which means a year from now, the hot new baby name is going to be Donald.
South Korea just elected a new president. And I don’t know if you saw this, one of his bodyguards is so super-hot that people on the internet are losing it. This is the security guard [shows photo]. I mean come on, ladies — that guy can debrief me any time.
I get what is going on here. The new South Korean president is kind of average-looking, you know, so why not surround yourself with someone young and hot. Did I mention Harry Styles is here all week?
May 10: We’re starting with what might be the most shocking episode of “The Celebrity President” yet. President Trump yesterday said adios to James Comey, who was director of the FBI, and also was in charge of investigating his campaign’s relationship with the Russians. He fired the guy who is investigating him. When we said Trump should act more presidential, we probably should have specified we didn’t mean Nixon.
Trump had his long-time personal bodyguard deliver a letter in a manila envelope to FBI headquarters informing him he was fired. James Comey wasn’t there, he was here in L.A. speaking to a group of FBI agents and they had the TV on. He sees on the news that he was fired. He thought it was a prank. For real, he thought it was — which makes you wonder what kind of friends he has.
Yesterday when the Comey firing happened, White House “stress secretary” Sean Spicer was about to leave for his Navy Reserve duty. And he didn’t want to answer questions, so he hid in the bushes outside the White House. For real. Sometimes you’ve got to stop and smell the Rose Garden, you know?
Spicer finally agreed to come out if the reporters turned their camera lights off and their cameras. I guess for some reason he felt like the White House press secretary crawling out of his hiding place might be a bad visual.
May 11: Tonight President Trump gave his first TV interview since he fired the director of the FBI on Tuesday. You know, one of the reasons they’re giving for that firing is that Trump said James Comey lost the trust of rank and file FBI agents. And today the acting head of the FBI, Andrew McCabe, flatly contradicted that. He said the vast majority of agents hold a deep positive connection to Director Comey. So he’s fired too, then, right? Everybody’s fired.
I think the strategist thing about how all this went down is that Trump fired James Comey by letter. He had a letter delivered to his office at the FBI. He didn’t even say, “You’re fired,” which is his catch phrase! It would be like Arnold Schwarzenegger leaving a party and just going, “See ya.”
Trump did an interview with The Economist in which he claims to have invented the phrase “priming the pump.” For real. He said he came up with it a couple of days ago and he thought it was good. He’s right, it is good. The phrase “priming the pump” has been around since the early 1930s.
Everyone is very focused on the Comey firing and whether Trump’s people colluded with the Russians — and all that is important. But I think this is even more important. Because forget everything politically, forget everything you believe for a minute, forget whether you’re a Democrat or Republican. Just clear your mind and ask yourself, what kind of a person thinks he came up with the phrase “priming the pump”?
I mean, who would ever say, “Yeah, thought of that” — only a crazy person. Every sane English-speaking person knows that unless Donald Trump is secretly 120 years old, he didn’t come up with “priming the pump.” That’s a red flag for a mental disorder. Even Melania was like, “You didn’t write that.”
It’s funny, every time Donald Trump does something like this, people go, “Is he crazy? Or is he crazy like a fox?” Well, I’m here to tell you there’s no fox. It’s just all crazy.
President Trump’s approval rating has sunk to near-historic lows. According to a new Quinnipiac poll, his approval rating is down to 36 percent. If it gets down to the 20s he might start dating it.
May 15: I have to say I’m very proud of myself. I made sure my wife had a great Mother’s Day. I got up early. I got up at 7 a.m. I quietly slipped out of bed. I left the house, didn’t come back until nighttime. That way she could have the whole day with the kids, just her and a 2-year-old and an infant. And you know what’s weird, she didn’t even thank me.
President Trump had a message for the moms of the world yesterday. He wrote, “Wishing FLOTUS Melania and all the great mothers out there a wonderful day with family and friends.” Then he went to play golf by himself. I’m pretty sure going to play golf alone on Mother’s Day while your wife takes care of the kid is grounds for divorce, isn’t it?
Not only was it Mother’s Day, also this weekend we had the mother of all cyber attacks, the biggest cyber attack in history. More than 300,000 people and institutions in about 150 countries had their data held hostage by ransomware called WannaCry, which sounds like a new single from Harry Styles.
Sadly the president did not get to go to Florida this weekend. He had to stay back to give the commencement speech at Liberty University on Saturday, where he inspired graduates by marveling at the size of the crowds he’s able to draw. [Video of Trump] “This is a beautiful stadium. And it is packed. I’m so happy about that.” Donald Trump is the only person who can show up at an event where families come to see their children graduate and assume the crowd is there to see him.
The president, I’m sure you know, fired FBI Director James Comey last week and then tweeted this. He wrote, “James Comey better hope there are no ‘tapes’ of our conversations before he starts leaking to the press!” I don’t know, if I was Donald Trump I wouldn’t mention tapes and leaking in the same sentence. Just in case.
Lawmakers in Washington are now demanding if there are tapes that Trump turn them over. Not just Democrats, but Republicans like Sen. Lindsey Graham are urging the White House to clear the air too. Here’s the thing: Donald Trump will never release tapes because the only tapes he has were recorded on the “Access Hollywood” bus.
May 10: The White House announced yesterday that President Trump fired FBI Director James Comey. Yet another long-time dream that Trump stole from Hillary.
President Vladimir Putin said today that Russia had “nothing to do with” the firing of FBI Director James Comey. And you can tell, because Comey’s alive.
A retreat called “Cannabliss” will take place next month in California. It’s a five-day marijuana festival that lasts 10 days.
May 11: Acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe testified before the Senate Intelligence Committee today. It went like this: “Do you swear to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth?” “I do.” “OK. You’re fired.”
A Confederate monument was removed today from New Orleans. No word on if they’ll relocate it to D.C., [shows photo of Jeff Sessions] like the Confederate monument they removed from Alabama.
In a newly released interview, President Trump said that he might release his tax returns after he leaves the White House. So keep your eyes peeled, ’cause he leaves the White House a lot.
A company is selling a jacket with a heating mode and a cooling mode. The way it works is, there’s a zipper.
Today was Eat What You Want Day, but “how can you eat a father’s love?” asked Eric.
Ride hailing service Uber will now allow users to save addresses other than home or work for quick access in the app. So get ready to get caught!
May 15: The Washington Post this evening reported that President Trump revealed highly classified information to the Russian foreign minister and ambassador during their closed-door meeting last week. You have to be kidding me! How can you let highly classified information fall into the hands of Donald Trump?
President Trump yesterday issued a statement calling for paid family leave. Which is a little surprising until you remember that he’s already paid two families to leave.
Parents at a Florida school are reportedly outraged after a video surfaced of students in a classroom twerking and giving lap dances. Or as it’s called in Florida, Career Day.
Customs officials in Malaysia have seized over 300 tortoises that were being smuggled through the airport. Three hundred tortoises, or as it’s technically known, a McConnell family reunion.
A 101-year-old man recently became the oldest person to sky dive. At least that’s the explanation coming from United Airlines.
May 10: It’s been a historic day. We have reached a milestone as a nation. It’s not just that the president fired the head of the FBI. No, here’s the milestone — we have apparently elected a president who truly does not care about what anything looks like. Which is surprising for a guy whose actual face we’ve never seen.
Firing Jim Comey, head of the FBI, really feels like Authoritarianism 101. Which, by the way, a very difficult class.
The word is Trump has been planning to fire Comey for at least a week. And he evidently asked Attorney General Jeff Sessions to come up with reasons to fire him. So now the Department of Justice is the Department of Justification.
So Comey has been fired, or as Fox News put it, “James Comey resigns.”
May 15: Well, ladies and gentlemen, I’ve got good news and bad news. The bad news: The Washington Post reports that Trump revealed highly classified information to the Russian foreign minister and ambassador. Good news: Trump found the leaker.
When Kislyak and Lavrov were in the Oval Office last week, Trump apparently went off script and began describing details about an Islamic state terrorist threat. That is unbelievable — Trump has a script? I don’t believe that for a minute. I need intel on that.
The information is so sensitive, the article can’t describe in detail what was shared, but one official said, “This is code-word information.” ”Code word” means the vital aspects of the story have to be replaced with other words. You have to say things like, “The package has been delivered.” “The squirrel is in the basket.” ”The idiot is in the Oval.”
STAGE ONE OF TRUMP'S IMMIGRATION PLAN...
WEEKLY SNOPES URBAN LEGEND UPDATE
Click HERE for the most current update.
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Being a gosling (baby goose) who can’t fly but has to jump off a 400-foot cliff to reach its parents below is tough. How tough? THIS tough. (Watching it to the end will bring a smile.) (4:16)
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If you were or are a fan of “Last Man Standing” starring Tim Allen — one of a handful of conservative actors in Hollywood — you may find this video of interest. It explains the real reasons why the popular show has been canceled. Did his politics have anything to do with it? Click HERE and judge for yourself. (5:26)
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Not only has Comrade Kosovilka spent time in the Ukranian park where this folk dance was filmed, but he says there is nothing like Ukrainian women, whether they are young and slender or older and full-figured. After watching THIS he’ll get no argument from us. (3:45)
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We defy you to explain how this magician pulled off this lottery illusion trick sent in by Lumpy. With the help of Google, we think we found the solution, but we can’t be sure. If you know how it was done and you don’t have a problem revealing a magician’s secret, let us KNOW and we’ll pass it along. (We have no such scruples.) (6:29)
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Mike Thompson says THIS is why people shouldn’t pre-judge older men, especially on the shooting range. (0:46)
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New express signs at Walmart expected to speed up the check-out process...
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"Bike Stealing 101" is a tough course to pass according to THIS clip received from Lumpy. (1:58)
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Baby Goats (a/k/a Kids) in jammies? You bet. How else can you tell them apart and keep them warm at the same time? That they hop around like a bunny rabbit also speaks to their cuteness. It’s difficult to see just how small THESE critters are until you compare their size to the typical house cat near the end of the clip. (2:11)
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A kindergarten teacher failed to foresee the outcome of a classroom project in which she had each of her 5-year-old students plant a cactus seed in a clown planter, which was intended to be a gift for each child's mother at the end of the school year...
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Have people always been capable of these skills, or have they just practiced harder and longer knowing if they got good enough they could be a YouTube star? Whatever the case, many of THESE folks have some remarkable athletic skills. (12:19)
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Coming on the heels of the Mother of All Bombs is the Mother of All Pinwheels, which may have convinced some people they were witnessing a UFO. (1:22)
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Imagine being in a shark cage when a Great White breaks in and shares the cage with you. There is no need to imagine. THIS is what it’s like. (1:37)
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Our apologies if THIS 30-second clip brings back disappointing memories for a few of you guys. Some of you guys. Lots of you guys. Most of you guys. Whatever. (0:30)
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While searching for an item in the Archives we ran across this reflex test that dates back 12 years to the July 26, 2005 Farsider. The idea is to tranquilize a sheep with a dart by clicking your mouse before the critter gets out of range. The directions are simple, and since no sheep are actually being harmed, what are you waiting for? Click HERE and see if you can beat the score below…
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What rancher needs to hire cowboys to round up HIS cattle when a trombone is just as effective and far cheaper? (4:13)
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Need to scale a wall? It’s easy if you go about it like THIS Vietnamese SWAT team. (1:27)
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This week’s closer may prove to be beneficial to those of you who would like to shed a few pounds…
The Perfect Diet:
Yesterday I was at my local Costco buying a large bag of Exclusive dog chow for my Doberman and was in the check-out line when a woman behind me asked if I had a dog.
What did she think I had, an elephant? Since I'm retired and have little to do, on impulse I told her no, I didn't have a dog and that I was starting the Exclusive Diet again. I added that I probably shouldn't because the last time I tried the diet I ended up in the hospital, but that I'd lost 50 pounds before I awakened in ICU with tubes coming out of most of my orifices and an IV in each arm.
I told her it was essentially a perfect diet, that the way it works is you load your pants pockets with Exclusive Nuggets and simply eat one or two every time you feel hungry. The food is nutritionally complete, and because it worked so well I was going to try it again.
By now, practically everyone in line was enthralled with my story.
Horrified, the woman asked if I ended up in intensive care because I was poisoned by the dog food. I told her no, that I had stepped off a curb to sniff a poodle's ass and was struck by a car.
The woman didn't think I was funny, but the other people standing in line were laughing so hard I thought they were going to wet themselves.
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Pic of the Week
THE FARSIDER SUBSCRIPTION ROSTER as of 5/18/17
Additions and changes since the last published update (alphabetical by last name):
Mickey Metcalfe — Address change
To receive the email address of anyone on the list -- or to receive the roster with all of the email addresses -- send your request to <firstname.lastname@example.org>.
Abram, Fred & Connie
Allen, Chaplain Bryan
Alvarez, Pat (Campbell)
Babineau, Dave & Cheryl
Bray, Mary Ellen
Bridgen, Betty Ruth
Brown Jr., Bill
Burroughs, (Bronson) Utta
Carr Jr., John
Carrillo, Jaci Cordes
Clark, Bill (the one who stayed)
Embry (Howsmon), Eva
Foulkes [Duchon], Louise
Gonzalez, D. (formerly D. Avila)
Guido, Jr., Jim
Guido, Sr. Jim
Hare, Caren (Carlisle)
Harnish, Mary (Craven)
Horton, Debbie (McIntyre)
Howsmon, (Jr.) Frank
Howsmon (Sr.), Frank
Hunter, Dick (via daughter Kim Mindling)
Inami, Steve & Francine
Johnson, Tom & Fran
Klein, Lou Anna
Leonard (Lintern), Lynda
Muldrow, Mark "Mo"
O'Carroll, Diane (Azzarello)
Perry (Cervantez), Martha
Rappe (Ryman), Bonnie
Reyes (Buell), Cindy
Richter, Darrell & Annette
Schenini (Alvarez), Joanne
Taves, Phil & Paula
Terry, Glenn & Maggie
Vallecilla, Ernie & Peggy
Van Dyck, Lois
Williams [Durham], Lanette
Windisch Jr., Steve