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Meet the Mountain View City Council candidates

Meet the Mountain View City Council candidates


Nine candidates have filed to run for three open seats on the Mountain View City Council in the Nov. 4 election – none of them incumbents. The Town Crier asked them to introduce themselves to readers in the following Q&A format. We knew the...

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Schools

LASD committee looks to rank campus improvement projects

LASD committee looks to rank campus improvement projects


Traci Newell/Town Crier
The Los Altos School District’s newly expanded Facilities Advisory Committee met for the first time last week. The 28-member committee’s first task is to prioritize campus improvement projects.

The Los Altos Scho...

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Community

Sports

New-look Lancers find their footing

New-look Lancers find their footing


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
St. Francis High’s Jenna Adams, left, and Carly Deale attempt to bump the ball Friday night. The juniors combined for 28 kills.

This year’s St. Francis High girls volleyball team faintly resembles last season’s squad ...

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Special Sections

MV Whisman teachers cite low pay

MV Whisman teachers cite low pay


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
An estimated 75 supporters of higher teacher pay turned out for the Sept. 4 Mountain View Whisman School District board meeting.

Teachers, trustees and administrators are recovering from a dramatic Mountain View Whism...

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Business

Skin rejuvenation studio joins Rancho

Skin rejuvenation studio joins Rancho


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Esthetician Marjan Kashi showcases one of the treatment rooms at her new studio, Pure Serenity Skincare at Rancho Shopping Center. Kashi provides services including microdermabrasion and various light and heat energy the...

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Books

A woman's perspective on the Greatest Generation

A woman's perspective on the Greatest Generation


During World War II, Virgilia Short Witzel, a young mother and U.S. Navy officer’s wife, grappled on the home front in Menlo Park with wartime rationing, shortages and loneliness. During the ensuing Cold War, she experienced adventure and misadventur...

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People

JERALD (JERRY) NELSON CHRISTIANSEN

JERALD (JERRY) NELSON CHRISTIANSEN

Resident of San Jose and Los Altos, California

July 21, 1931 to August 4, 2014

Born in Arimo, Idaho, to Jerald Emmett and Rebecca Henderson Nelson Christiansen. Raised in Davis and Riverside, California, with summers in Downey, Idaho, and in Loga...

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Travel

LA photographer spends a night with cranes – and moose – in Alaska

LA photographer spends a night with cranes – and moose – in Alaska


Sandy Powell/Special to the Town Crier
Los Altos resident and bird photographer Sandy Powell recently visited Homer, Alaska, to photograph Sandhill cranes, below. While there, Powell also encountered moose, left.

Los Altos resident Sandy Powell, a...

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Stepping Out

Pear puts on a pair of plays

Pear puts on a pair of plays


J. Smith/Special to the Town Crier
Dan Kapler (as Teddy) and Betsy Kruse Craig (Trish) star in Pear Avenue Theatre’s “House.”

The Pear Avenue Theatre production of two interlocking comedies by Alan Ayckbourn – “House&...

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Spiritual Life

Back to Church Sunday offers opportunity to recommit

The children in Los Altos are back to school, and I can still hear parents cheering. Summer is officially over, even if the calendar doesn’t quite think so.

Parents have attended Back to School nights to meet their children’s teachers. B...

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Magazine

Los Altos Hills home showcases resort-inspired living

Los Altos Hills home showcases resort-inspired living


Courtesy of Spectrum Interior Design
In place of a more traditional fireplace, this modern living room features a linear-flame firebox that emits heat while offering a sculpturelike design element.

After traveling the world and visiting a host...

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Foothill resource center nurtures returning vets


Photo By:
Eliza Ridgeway/Town Crier

Veterans from around the country enroll at Foothill College, drawn by its outstanding reputation. When they arrive at the Los Altos Hills campus, in addition to excellent academic programs they find the Veterans Resource Center waiting for them. Under the direction of Carmela Xuereb, the center assists vets in their transition to civilian life.

On a recent weekday, young men and women passed through the humble little office space, the size of a teenager’s bedroom, filling out paperwork and taking a break between classes. They have access to the center’s extensive list of counseling, workshops and training. And they also guide each other as peer mentors.

Beth Stolyarchuk, a former Russian linguist in the U.S. Marine Corps, had only a week to get organized for her new life as a student when she moved from Hawaii this autumn to study radiology at Foothill. The Resource Center simplified the process. Xuereb walked her through the details of enrolling using military education benefits and introduced her to other resources veterans can tap.

“Carmela hooked me up with everything I needed to get done,” Stolyarchuk said, including a high-tech Livescribe Smartpen, to help her bring her A-game as she hits the books. Smartpens loans are among the resources veterans find at the center.

The pens record and store lectures and notes for later review. Using the new tool takes practice and follow-through, but Stolyarchuk said those are the skills veterans are particularly suited to bring to the classroom.

“Radiology is super competitive. I have to get good grades to get into the course,” Stolyarchuk said, reviewing the classes she was taking this fall and the new study skills she’d picked up as she took on a challenging geology course.

Support from the Town Crier Holiday Fund helps equip the center, which also has a computer lab and plans to expand into a larger space.

Veterans at the center last week spoke with gravity about the importance they place on their new mission – learning to excel as students.

“I have the discipline to sit in the classroom and pay attention,” Stolyarchuk said. “In my history class, I was made a teacher’s assistant because I was military.”

Xuereb said the center keeps teachers and staff at Foothill informed about the veterans who enroll, including any injuries, visible or unseen, that an accommodating classroom could ameliorate.

Returning from military service brings challenges differing from those most of the students face, independent of whether a veteran may have been wounded. Most of the vets are self-supporting rather than relying on parents’ funds and have to juggle work and study, veteran Brennon Shepherd pointed out.

Although veterans bring social skills honed by years of working with people from a wide range of backgrounds, when they get to Foothill, often they don’t know many people in the area. The Veterans Resource Center serves as a clubhouse, where they can find like-minded company and resources.

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