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News

Campaign finance reports show lots of loans, few outliers

Campaign finance reports show lots of loans, few outliers


Ellie Van Houtte/ Town Crier
Campaign yard signs are just one expenditure for candidates during election season.

Election finance filings are in, and Los Altos appears to be hosting a few financially lopsided races.

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Schools

Three Los Altos schools earn National Blue Ribbon designation

Three Los Altos schools earn National Blue Ribbon designation


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Bullis Charter School students wear their school spirit clothing to greet their mascot Oct. 3 in celebration of being named a National Blue Ribbon School.

Blach Intermediate, Egan Junior High and Bullis Charter schools ea...

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Community

Sports

Spartans run wild(cat) on Eagles

Spartans run wild(cat) on Eagles


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Mountain View High running back Austin Johnson goes for a big gain after evading Los Altos High defensive tackle Phil Alameda in Friday’s game. Johnson scored two touchdowns for the Spartans.

After unveiling its wildc...

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Comment

Logan, McClatchie, Peruri for LASD board: Editorial

This is a crucial time for the Los Altos School District. Its leadership faces the challenge of balancing enrollment growth versus maintaining the small, neighborhood schools that make it a very popular district to attend. The district must also adap...

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Special Sections

City's minimum-wage hike earns mixed reviews: Raise to $10.30 an hour meets with approval – and concern

City's minimum-wage hike earns mixed reviews: Raise to $10.30 an hour meets with approval – and concern


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Tandava Waldon, left, manager of East West Bookstore on Castro Street in Mountain View, works with a customer. Waldon said the recently approved minimum-wage hike will have little impact on his business. “It’s not such a...

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Business

Delay Social Security? An easy way to decide

One of the most heatedly debated questions regarding Social Security is when to start.

You have the option of initiating benefits as early as age 62 or as late as age 70. The longer you wait, the larger the monthly payment you will receive over your...

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Books

Helping kids catch a few Zs: Local dental hygienist pens meditative bedtime book

Helping kids catch a few Zs: Local dental hygienist pens meditative bedtime book


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Mimi Sommers, who works at a Los Altos dentist’s office, recently wrote a children’s book.

A local dental hygienist recently published a book that aims to ease parents and children during a sometimes anxious e...

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People

SUZANNE MONICA DIMM SPECHT

SUZANNE MONICA DIMM SPECHT

Suzanne Monica Dimm Specht passed Tuesday, Sept. 9th at the age of 84. Sue was born on April 21, 1930 in Portland, Oregon. After graduating from the University of Oregon in with a degree in Music, Sue taught in a little town called Clatskanie, Oreg...

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Travel

Los Altos resident's visit to North Korea proves enlightening

Los Altos resident's visit to North Korea proves enlightening


Courtesy of Sally Brew
North Korea is home to many monuments honoring its “Dear Leaders,” left.

In August, I traveled for 11 days with MIR Corp. to North Korea, a fascinating country that is almost completely cut off from the rest of the world. ...

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Stepping Out

'Trovatore' takes the stage in Palo Alto

'Trovatore' takes the stage in Palo Alto


Courtesy of José Luis Moscovich
West Bay Opera’s production of “Il Trovatore” is slated to open Friday night in Palo Alto and run through Oct. 26.

West Bay Opera’s production of “Il Trovatore” (“The Troubadour”) is scheduled to open this weekend...

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Spiritual Life

Magazine

Local events add color to autumn calendar

Local events add color to autumn calendar


Van Houtte/town crier Visitors make their way through the Children’s Alley.

As Los Altos’ signature Chinese Pistache trees exchange their summer green for vibrant hues of yellow, orange and red in the fall, an abundance of local events also ad...

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The aftermath of an accident: A Piece of My Mind

My brother had an accident. He was working overtime on the weekend, on a 10-foot ladder. The ladder slipped backward from under him and he fell with it onto a wood-composite deck. He broke both wrists, his shoulder blade and every bone in his face except his lower jaw.

Day 1: He is in an induced coma in intensive care in critical but stable condition.

Day 2: My brother is in surgery for nine hours, first for a tracheotomy to enable breathing, because his nose and sinus cavities are shattered, then to reassemble his face. The reassembly requires 11 titanium plates and 93 screws.

Day 3: The doctors bring my brother out of the induced coma to test for possible spinal injuries. As he regains consciousness, according to a family member in the room, “He made a sound of such excruciating pain that no human should have to make. He won’t remember it, but his son and his fiancee, who were in the room, will never forget it.” The doctors put my brother back into a coma while they “adjust the painkillers.”

Day 4: With better pain management, my brother comes out of the coma. He is able to respond to questions with eye blinks, head shakes and nods. A feeding tube and tracheotomy limit his speech.

Day 5: His son brings in a whiteboard. Holding a marker between two numb fingers, my brother can write a wobbly word or two. His first word: “Mom?”

Day 6: My brother is out of intensive care. The doctors have found no damage to his spine, brain or vision. However, when he first puts his feet to the ground, he discovers another injury – a broken toe that had gone unnoticed earlier.

Day 7: My brother goes home from the hospital. Both arms are in splints, and his jaw is wired to prevent chewing, which might dislocate his carefully reassembled face. He loses 20 pounds in the three days before doctors insert the feeding tube.

Day 15: My mother and I fly up to help the caregiving team. We are apprehensive about what that new face will look like, but to our delighted surprise, my brother’s new face looks pretty much like his old face – maybe the nose is a little shorter, a little straighter.

My nephew shows me a picture of what his dad’s face looked like shortly after he was brought in to the emergency room – like a puddle of lemon Jell-O with red eyes floating in the middle. Amazing.

Day 19: I take my brother to see the facial surgeon who had put him back together. A lady in the waiting room notices his arm casts and comments, “I thought they only did facial surgery at this office.” With her attention drawn to the twin casts, she had not noticed anything odd about his face.

My brother’s family thanks God for his recovery.

I’m grateful, too, but I can’t help thinking, “God, what a waste of your time! It would have been so much more efficient if you had just steadied that ladder!”

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