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News

Street crack-sealing project begins Monday, May 4

The City of Los Altos is beginning a city-wide street crack-sealing project on Monday (May 4).

City officials said the traffic impact for this project will be minimal. No streets will be closed and vehicles can resume normal traffic flow shortly aft...

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Schools

Homestead students use projects  to solve environmental problems

Homestead students use projects to solve environmental problems


Alisha Parikh/Special to the Town Crier
Homestead High School junior Maya Dhar, a Los Altos resident, left, and classmate Carolyn MacDonald support the school’s AP Environmental Science classes at the Arbor Day Festival April 23.

As summer app...

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Community

CHAC appoints new leader

CHAC appoints new leader

Naomi Nakano-Matsumoto, LCSW, has been named the new executive director of the Community Health Awareness Council (CHAC). A seasoned nonprofit leader, Nakano-Matsumoto is scheduled to assume duties July 1. She takes over for outgoing executive direct...

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Sports

St. Francis swimmers shine

St. Francis swimmers shine


Megan V. Winslow/Town Crier
St. Francis High’s Benjamin Ho competes against Sacred Heart Cathedral Thursday. The junior swam on all three victorious relays at the home meet, which the Lancers won easily.

Flexing its power in the pool, host St....

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Comment

Halsey House deserves preservation: Other Voices

Halsey House deserves preservation: Other Voices


Many contributing supporters to the Friends of Historic Redwood Grove believe that the Halsey House, designated a historic landmark by the Los Altos City Council in 1981, deserves to be saved and renovated for adapted use by the community.

Set in ...

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Special Sections

Sneaky shots: A photographer’s guide to capturing the proposal

Sneaky shots: A photographer’s guide to capturing the proposal


Elliott Burr/Special to the Town Crier
A stealthy photographer scouts locations ahead of time to find not just a place to perch, but also the ideal position for the subjects.

It’s showtime.

You’re about to ask the person in front of...

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Business

Pharmaca celebrates grand opening over weekend

Pharmaca celebrates grand opening over weekend


Megan V. Winslow/Town Crier
Pharmaca is coming to 400 Main St. with a grand-opening celebration scheduled Saturday and Sunday.

If natural health and beauty products are your cup of tea, expect to find them – and hot tea – this weekend at the gran...

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Books

People

JANE BUTTERFIELD PRINGLE LYND

JANE BUTTERFIELD PRINGLE LYND

October 30, 1924 - April 8, 2015

Jane Butterfield Pringle Lynd, daughter to Liebert and Elise Butterfield of San Francisco, passed away quietly at her home in Palo Alto surrounded by her family, following a short illness. Jane was a proud third ge...

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Travel

Cuba libre: Local residents join mad rush of travelers

Cuba libre: Local residents join mad rush of travelers


Natalie Elefant/Special to the Town Crier
Los Altos resident Natalie Elefant noted the vibrant street performances as a traveler in Cuba.

The U.S. restored diplomatic relations with Cuba late last year, enabling Americans to import $100 worth of cig...

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Stepping Out

'Birds' landing in Mtn. View

'Birds' landing in Mtn. View


Ray Renati/Special to the Town Crier
The Pear Avenue Theatre production of Paul Braverman’s “Birds of a Feather” stars Troy Johnson as mafia boss Sean Kineen, left, and Diane Tasca as private eye Frankie Payne.

Pear Avenue Theatre’s world premi...

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Spiritual Life

Magazine

Practice prudent pruning: Maintaining manzanita, ceanothus and toyon

Practice prudent pruning: Maintaining manzanita, ceanothus and toyon


tanya kucak/Special to the Town Crier
Shrub manzanitas are known for their sinuous mahogany trunks and branches. If the foliage hides the bark, prune selectively to open the center so that the bark is visible year-round. This Montara manzanita is ...

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Inside Mountain View

Up to the challenge: Local leaders unite to help at-risk youth

Up to the challenge: Local leaders unite to help at-risk youth


Courtesy of Challenge Team
Jeanette Freiberg, bottom of pile, has fun with family members. The Challenge Team named Freiberg, a student at Mountain View High School, its 2015 Youth Champion.

There’s an ongoing joke among members of the Challenge...

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School principal remembers slain priest as friend to all


Courtesy of St. Francis High School
The late Rev. Eric Freed formerly served as chaplain and teacher at St. Francis High.

St. Francis High School Principal Patricia Tennant last week remembered the Rev. Eric Freed, S.S., as a man who treated everyone he encountered in the same manner – without judgment.

“He was the everyman priest … he was everybody’s pastor,” Tennant said of Freed, a former St. Francis chaplain and religious studies teacher who was killed in the rectory of St. Bernard Catholic Church in Eureka New Year’s Day. “He was a great listener. He never judged and he truly had an open heart.”

Local police have since arrested 44-year-old Gary Lee Bullock and charged him with the murder. At the time of his death, Freed, 56, was pastor at St. Bernard’s, taught in the Religious Studies Department at Humboldt State University and served as chaplain of the university’s Newman Center.

In a conversation with the Town Crier, Tennant said she initially learned of Freed’s death shortly after a fellow priest discovered his body on New Year’s Day.

“I got a phone call the evening of New Year’s Day that he had been killed. It was a very difficult message to hear,” said Tennant, who added that the school held private Masses Jan. 6 and 9 for grieving students and faculty members. The school also celebrated Mass Sunday in the Brothers’ Chapel in remembrance of Freed.

“There was great disbelief,” Tennant said of the school community’s reaction to Freed’s passing. “I talked to a colleague today and he kept saying that he wants it to be a dream, that he wants to wake up.”

Tennant said she’ll remember Freed as not only a friend to her, but to countless students and faculty members he got to know both during and after his tenure at the school. She noted last seeing him in November, when he stayed at her home while assisting St. Francis faculty members in hosting the school’s annual senior retreat. It was an event, she noted, that Freed looked forward to every year, even after his 2002-2005 tenure at the school ended.

During his stay, Freed walked through the school, popping into classrooms to say hello to former colleagues and speak with students. In one class, she recalled, he held an on-the-spot calligraphy lesson for students.

“He walked into my English classroom and talked to all my kids,” said Tennant, who added that Freed had presided over her daughter’s wedding and also baptized all of her grandchildren. “He was that kind of guy. He was very worldly but so grounded in the human experience that he could talk to anyone.”

Tennant added that Freed’s 20-year residence in Japan, where he entered the Salesian Religious Congregation in 1979 before being ordained as a Salesian priest in 1990, helped shape his approach to people and the world.

“When he talked to kids or adults, he embraced all different cultures and approaches to life because he came from such a broad global perspective,” said Tennant, who attended the funeral service in Eureka last week. “It seemed there wasn’t anything in life that he couldn’t find a passion for.”

Tennant said Freed’s legacy was impactful considering the brief period he served at the school – and won’t soon be forgotten by its community.

“The grieving is open and it’s natural, but we also know he was a man of great faith, and that’s what sustaining me,” she said. “I just know that we loved him, and knowing that he loved us back is a good thing.”

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