A milestone anniversary, communications awards, a Girl Scouts project and a milestone in shredding – yes, shredding – are among the good news items from around the region this week.
Fairfield residents Walt and Alene Dean will celebrate their 65th anniversary Aug. 14 – putting them in the elite group of fewer than 5 percent of marriages that last that long.
The couple met in 1948 when Walt returned to Sioux Falls, S.D., after three years in the Air Force. He returned to college, while Alene had arrived in town that summer from Iowa to work as a housekeeper and nanny. They met at the First Methodist Church and their first date was to watch a play at the college Walt attended. They were smitten.
“During that winter, we would walk everywhere – I didn’t own a car,” Walt wrote in a letter describing their marriage. “One night, I really fell for her. There was ice on the sidewalk, she slipped and as I tried to hold her, I fell on top of her.”
That was probably quite a sight – Walt is 6 feet 5 inches tall and Alene is 5-foot-3.
The falling was figurative, also – he asked her to marry him March 15, 1949, and they married that August in Minneapolis, where Walt was attending broadcast television equipment school.
Walt was in the Air Force during the Korean War and later switched to the Navy, from which he retired in 1972. He also worked as an announcer/engineer for three radio stations and as a TV studio control room engineer, plus for the telecommunications department for the state of California. They lived in Minnesota, Mississippi, South Dakota, Florida and Northern Ireland, in addition to California. They’ve lived in Fairfield for 42 years.
The couple had three children – Walter James III (deceased), Brian Lynn of Colorado and Naomi Alene Burns of Fairfield, as well as eight grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.
Congratulations to a Fairfield couple who “fell” for each other 65 years ago and are still together.
Vacaville resident Kathy Keatley Garvey won a gold award from the International Association for Communication Excellence for her photo of Jakub Bavka of Poland, wearing a bee beard.
The picture was taken at the Harry H. Laidlaw Jr. Honey Bee Research Facility at the University of California, Davis.
Garvey is a communications specialist with the UC Davis Department of Entomology and Nematology. She also won a first-place gold award for “best writing on the web” for her Bug Squad Blog on “Thankful for Insects” posted on the University of California Agriculture and Natural Resources website, and a third-place bronze award for a series of her favorite photos from 2013.
In the past five years, Garvey has won a dozen gold awards from the Association for Communication Excellence in writing and photography, plus the Outstanding Professional Skill Award for Writing in 2011 and the Outstanding Professional Skill Award for Photography in both 2012 and 2013.
The awards were presented at the organization’s annual meeting, which took place recently in Portland, Ore.
The Gone for Good jobs program for United Cerebral Palsy of the North Bay surpassed a milestone at its confidential paper shredding events that take place the final Saturday of each month through October.
The group has now collected, shredded and recycled 10,606 pounds of paper, collected and recycled 5,992 pounds of e-waste and 250 pounds of clothing, according to Bruce Mullenix of UCP North Bay.
The July 26 event included 1,718 pounds of shredding, 527 pounds of e-waste and 250 pounds of clothing.
Esther Estrada Blanco of the Fairfield Public Works Department complimented Mullenix for providing the service and Margaret Manzo of the Fairfield Main Street Association for helping them secure a good location – the parking lot at Jefferson Street and Empire Street in downtown Fairfield.
For more information on coming events, call 430-4380, ext. 110.
Erin Godwin, Marissa Grimes and Maya Nelson from Girl Scouts Troop 20447 in Fairfield recently completed their Silver Award project.
The girls designed and built a winter cat shelter for feral cats at Solano Community College. The girls took a great deal of pride knowing that they were caring for the feral cat population and had a ceremony Thursday with the Campus Cat Club, as well as many cat lovers who were in attendance during the dedication. They wanted to especially thank Ann Hefner-Gravink: The Girl Scouts leader is a constant in their lives and also a professor at Solano College.
Amy Maginnis-Honey and Brad Stanhope contributed to this report. Have good news? Send it to [email protected]