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News

E. coli found in Los Altos water indicated breach, but only low risk

E. coli found in Los Altos water indicated breach, but only low risk


Courtesy of Microbe World
Colorized low-temperature electron micrograph of a cluster of E. coli bacteria

When E. coli and other bacteria were discovered in some Los Altos water last week, officials from the local water supplier, California Water...

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Schools

BCS hosts Stretch to Kindergarten program for underserved youth

BCS hosts Stretch to Kindergarten program for underserved youth


Traci Newell/Town Crier
The six-week, tuition-free Stretch to Kindergarten program, hosted at Bullis Charter School, serves children who have not attended preschool. A teacher leads children in singing about the parts of a butterfly, above.

Local un...

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Community

Google car painting project calls on artists

Google car painting project calls on artists


Google self-driving car

Already known as an innovator in the tech field, Google Inc. is now moving in on the art world.

The Mountain View-based company July 11 launched the “Paint the Town” contest, a “moving art experiment” that invites Califo...

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Sports

Pedaling with a purpose

Pedaling with a purpose


courtesy of
Rishi Bommannan Rishi Bommannan cycled from Bates College in Maine to his home in Los Altos Hills, taking several selfies along the way. He also raised nearly $13,000 for the Livestrong Foundation, which supports cancer patients.

When R...

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Comment

The truth about coyotes: Other Voices

The Town Crier’s recent article on coyotes venturing down from the foothills in search of sustenance referenced the organization Project Coyote (“Recent coyote attacks keep residents on edge,” July 1). Do not waste your time contac...

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Special Sections

Grant Park senior program made permanent

Grant Park senior program made permanent


Photos by Alicia Castro/Town Crier
Local residents participate in an exercise class at the Grant Park Senior Center, above. Betsy Reeves, below left with Gail Enenstein, lobbied for senior programming in south Los Altos.

It all began when Betsy Reev...

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Business

New State Street rug retailer has downtown Los Altos covered

New State Street rug retailer has downtown Los Altos covered


Alicia Castro/Town Crier
Los Altos Rug Gallery owner Fahim Karimi stocks his State Street store with a wall-to-wall array of floor coverings.

A new downtown business owner plans to roll out the red carpet – along with rugs of every other color –...

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Books

Book Signings

• Fritz and Nomi Trapnell have scheduled a book-signing party 4-6 p.m. Aug. 1 at their home, 648 University Ave., Los Altos.

Fritz and his daughter, Dana Tibbitts, co-authored “Harnessing the Sky: Frederick ‘Trap’ Trapnell, ...

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People

GRACE WILSON FRANKS

GRACE WILSON FRANKS

Resident of Los Altos

Grace Wilson Franks, our beloved mother and grandmother, left us peacefully on July 16, 2015 just a few weeks short of her 92nd birthday. She was born to Ross and Florence (Cruzan) Wilson in rural Tulare, California on Septem...

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Travel

Gearing up: Make travel more civilized with accessories

Gearing up: Make travel more civilized with accessories


Eren Göknar/Special to the Town Crier
San Francisco-based humangear Inc. sells totes, tubes and tubs for traveling.

In travel, as in romance, it’s the little things that count.

Beyond the glossy brochures lie the travel discomforts too mun...

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Stepping Out

Going out with a 'Bang'

Going out with a 'Bang'


Richard Mayer/Special to the Town Crier
“Chitty Chitty Bang Bang” stars, clockwise from top left, Alexander Sanchez, Sophia Sturiale, Deborah Rosengaus and Danny Martin.

Los Altos Stage Company and Los Altos Youth Theatre’s joint production of t...

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Spiritual Life

Build a 'light' house and get out of that dark place

Most of us have a place inside our hearts and minds that occasionally causes us trouble. For some, it is sadness, depression or despair. For others, it may be fear, anger, resentment or myriad other emotional “dark places” that at times seem to hij...

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Magazine

Inside Mountain View

Residents gather at NASA Ames for Pluto Flyby event

Residents gather at NASA Ames for Pluto Flyby event


Megan V. Winslow/Town Crier
NASA Ames’ Pluto Flyover event kindles the imaginations of young attendees.

Sue Moore watched the July 20, 1969, moon landing beside patients and staff members of the San Francisco hospital where she worked as a nurse...

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No signs of slowing down : Los Altos realtor celebrates 89th birthday, plans to keep working


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier 
Harold Hughes began his career in real estate at age 69. Hughes celebrated his 89th birthday last week.

Coldwell Banker realtor Harold Hughes isn’t letting age slow him down anytime soon.

Hughes, who embarked on a third career as a realtor nearly 21 years ago, celebrated his 89th birthday last week with a large contingent of colleagues and friends – as well as a sizable birthday cake – at the Coldwell Banker offices at 161 S. San Antonio Road. The 36-year Los Altos resident, who works part time, told the Town Crier that he has no plans to call it a career anytime soon.

“I have to do something, you know,” Hughes said with a chuckle. “When I started in real estate, I was determined to work in (the industry) for 20 years. Maybe now I’ll make it 25.”

And work is certainly nothing new to Hughes, who still lives in the same Los Altos house he and his wife, Joy, purchased in 1977.

The son of a Kentucky tobacco farmer, Hughes joined the Navy at the age of 18, serving in World War II and the Korean War before retiring in 1963 after a 20-year military career. He served an additional 10 years as a reservist, then worked for VWR International LLC in Brisbane, a global laboratory supply company, where he ascended from salesman to the company’s management ranks before retiring once again in 1989 at age 65.

Despite a second retirement, Hughes said he still had the bug to continue working and attempted to form a startup to compete with VWR. However, the venture proved to be short-lived and he found himself pursuing a third career in real estate.

“I knew I still wanted to do something,” said Hughes, who began taking courses in real estate in the early 1990s. “At the time, things were booming and I just needed something to do.”

Meanwhile, Hughes’ colleagues said he’s a continuing source of laughs, inspiration and entertaining stories of years gone by to all who know him.

Fellow Coldwell Banker realtor and Los Altos resident Kathryn Tomaino said Hughes stands out because of his loyalty and work ethic, among other qualities.

“My dad was a World War II vet also, and Harold is kind of the last of the breed,” said Tomaino, in reference to the “Greatest Generation.”

“He’s very loyal, as you can see – he’s been here 20 years,” she continued. “He’s always out there and very involved. I think it’s what keeps him young.”

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