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News

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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Berlin Wall goes back up: Dedication of segments at MV library reflects change from Cold War icon to symbol of freedom


The dedication of the Berlin Wall, above, draws a large turnout at the Mountain View Public Library.

November 1989 marked the official fall of the infamous Berlin Wall, a Cold War icon that divided countries, political ideologies and family members. Recognizing the 24th anniversary of that historic event, Mountain View made history of its own Thursday when city officials and a prominent German family officially dedicated two segments of the wall in front of the city’s library.

San Francisco German Consul General Peter Rothen also was on hand to show his country’s appreciation of the city’s efforts to preserve and install the two 12-foot-high, multi-ton concrete slabs as historic monuments.

“This is a joyful occasion,” said Rothen, who referred to the wall remnants as “beautiful pieces that are now artwork.”

The two segments, adjacent to the front entrance of the library at 585 Franklin St., are encased in glass and stand adjacent to one another.

“These pieces should be seen by as many people as possible,” Rothen said, noting that the wall as a whole was a symbol of oppression but these dedicated pieces are now “symbols of freedom and democracy, and German-American friendships.”

Erected in 1961, the Berlin Wall separated East and West Germany. It ran for 96 miles and denied passage between the two sides. The fall of communism and the Soviet Union led to a prophecy fulfilled when then-President Ronald Reagan said to former Soviet Premier Mikhail Gorbachev, “Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall.”

Shortly after the wall fell, Mountain View residents Frank R. Golzen and Kunigunda Golzen had two segments transported to property they owned on Marine Way. The segments stood on display on the Golzens’ land for more than 20 years until Frank passed away in 2008. Frank felt that the segments symbolized American resolve and freedom.

“Dad felt bringing a section of the Berlin Wall to the United States was a unique opportunity,” said daughter Renee Roberts, representing Golzen family members in attendance.

Roberts said her parents were born and raised in Germany but moved to America prior to World War II for a better way of life. The Golzens operated a successful Mountain View business for several decades.

Family members sold the Marine Way property last year. Concurrent with the sale, the family approached the city about the Berlin Wall sections. The city council accepted the segments Sept. 18, 2012, as a donation from the family.

The Visual Arts Committee, councilmembers and city staff selected the location in front of the library.

Both wall segments are littered with graffiti, drawn on the West German side.

One section shows an Elvis caricature, and scrawled on the other section is “Wir Lieben Dich,” which means “We Love You.”

Rothen said approximately 50 such Berlin Wall segments are now in the U.S., eight in California. Only two pairs are located in Northern California – the other pair is in Monterey.

In addition to introductory comments by Mayor John Inks, last week’s ceremony featured a performance by the string orchestra section of the Mountain View-based German International School of Silicon Valley.

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