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By Bradley Zint | December 20, 2012
The scene was quiet in a large lot off Bristol Street, not far from where the 55 Freeway meets the 73. On that weekday afternoon of clear blue skies, there were a handful of workers, no customers and plenty of room for expansion. The remaining inventory of Christmas trees needed only a small corner of that unpaved and barely noticed slice of Costa Mesa. In future days, the acreage likely will be built upon, and no longer will have room for selling Douglas firs. But in the meantime, it's the holiday home base of Noonan's Christmas trees, a family business since 1944 that was started after Harry Noonan Sr. got home from World War II and there was nothing for him to do. Nowadays, four generations of Noonans are carrying on with the tradition that Harry Sr. took part in until he died.
By Jeremiah Dobruck | December 5, 2012
About 150 Corona del Mar Middle School students got a chance to play Santa on Wednesday at the Veterans Administration in Long Beach. They handed out gifts with hand-written cards, feasted on a donated Christmas dinner and put on a variety show in the VA's packed community room. "It's really nice to have a chance to serve them because they served us so much," said eighth-grader Sarah Lawson. CdM has a long-lasting relationship with the hospital, putting on the Christmas party for 34 years under the steady hands of Kathy and Jim Roberts, whose children have long since graduated.
By Jeremiah Dobruck | November 17, 2012
Jamie Havig was about to redeploy. The Navy combat medic put on his headphones, blasted the volume and tried to ignore the plane's bouncing descent. "I've been on a lot of flights where I was being shot at and landing in really hot zones, but this one made me nervous," Havig said. This time he was landing in the middle of a storm at John F. Kennedy Airport in Queens, New York. Havig is a veteran who served two tours in Iraq attached to a Marine sniper team. It's where he picked up his nickname, "Doc.
November 13, 2012
More than 100 veterans and their family members ate breakfast at a Veterans Day celebration at Mariners Christian School, an official said. This year was Mariners' 10th annual celebration for those who served, and vets heard the national anthem, reciting the pledge of allegiance and saw the presentation of colors performed Friday, according to John Reger, who handles media relations for the school. Speaker "Iron Mike" Mervosh, a decorated veteran of World War II and the Korean and Vietnam wars addressed those in the audience about his experiences, Reger said.
By Jill Cowan | November 7, 2012
SANTA ANA - With all 71 precincts reporting, former Mayor Sandy Genis and current Councilmen Steve Mensinger and Gary Monahan are the top three vote-getters in the Costa Mesa City Council race. Voters were able to choose three of eight candidates. But with potentially thousands of provisional and vote-by-mail ballots still uncounted, and with fourth-place candidate John Stephens trailing Monahan by 319 votes as of 5 p.m. Wednesday, the local attorney said he's not ready to concede.
November 5, 2012
Two local colleges will host ceremonies this week to honor the nation's service men and women. Orange Coast College and Vanguard University are hosting Veterans Day tributes Thursday and Friday, respectively. OCC's program, "Honoring Their Service and Sacrifice," will feature a flag-raising ceremony, a panel discussion and guest speakers Charles A. Macias, the co-author of "Operation Legacy" and Joshua Stone, an OCC student and U.S. Army veteran. The tribute begins at noon in the quad with the panel discussion immediately afterward in Student Center on campus, 2701 Fairview Road.
By Sarah Peters | October 19, 2012
An old adage takes on new meaning for two local shipwrights preparing to watch a piece of Newport Harbor history sail out of port Saturday for the last time: Home is where the hull is. Newport Beach residents and Vietnam veterans John Matthews, 70, and Robert Payon, 57, spent more than seven years and upward of $45,000 restoring Old No. 9, the harbor's first fireboat, after it was docked more than a decade ago at the Newport Sea Base . ...
By Brittany Woolsey | October 18, 2012
When he got out of the U.S. Army with an honorable discharge in 1993, Patrick Tillich's life took a negative turn. He spent some nights in jail, which he looked forward to so he wouldn't have to sleep on the streets. He also enjoyed the jail's warm meals over Dumpster diving for food. He continued the drug abuse he had picked up overseas while in the service and was absent from his daughter's life. "As an active alcoholic and drug addict of over 27 years and a homeless veteran, I felt that nobody cared about who I was as person," he said via email.
By Brittany Woolsey | October 5, 2012
David Jenkins retired from the military last December. He went back to school to pursue his master's degree in organizational leadership but still sought help with transitioning back into civilian life. That's when the Reboot Workshop stepped in. Reboot is a three-week "holistic reintegration program" that helps veterans find their identity and purpose after military life but before they embark into the civilian world, said co-founder Maurice Wilson. He said that other programs only helped veterans after they had "already hit rock bottom and needed help to be rebuilt back up again.
By B.W. Cook and By B.W. Cook | September 19, 2012
Cindy McCain , wife of Sen. and former Republican presidential candidate John McCain (R-Ariz.), came into Newport Beach on Friday evening for a special dinner at the Ritz Restaurant in Fashion Island. Cindy McCain is a double Blue Star Mom, a member of an organization of mothers of children who have served in the military. The organization is a non-sectarian and nonprofit support group assisting members of the United States military. The purpose of her visit was to raise awareness for another organization, HonorVet, who "has created a sustainable and tactical approach to address the crippling issues facing our veterans today," according to an event flier.
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