Crime Report: 12/7/17

Friday, December 1:
At 5 p.m., a female suspect took a drink and food from the Downey Liquor at 7617 Firestone Blvd. The suspect left the location without paying and when confronted by the cashier, she brandished a knife and punched the cashier. The suspect then fled the location. Detectives are investigating.

Saturday, December 2:
At 11:00 a.m., the victim returned to her parked car in the parking lot of the Home Depot at 7121 Firestone Blvd. She then discovered a male suspect had broken into it and was still inside. The suspect then punched the victim and fled in a vehicle driven by a female suspect. The victim was able to take a picture of the suspect vehicle’s license plate with her cell phone. The suspects were later stopped in Compton and arrested for robbery.

Sunday, December 3:
At 3:00 p.m., officers detained a male for mental evaluation after he intentionally lit himself and his car on fire inside the garage of his relatives’ home in the 10500 block of Pomering Rd. The male was taken to a local hospital for treatment of his injuries and may face arson charges.

Bellflower Comedy Festival coming Dec. 21

BELLFLOWER – The City of Bellflower and The Stand Up Comedy Magazine will present five nationally recognized comics at the Bellflower Comedy Fest on Thursday, Dec. 21 at 7 p.m. at the Bristol Civic Auditorium. 

This special event filled with food and laughter for the entire family will feature, Stephanie Clark, Tom Clark, Bruce Jingles, Brian Kiley and Frazer Smith. 

Tickets on sale now for $25 per person at      

Stephanie Clark, the female comedian of the show, has been featured on Huff Post and hosts a well-acclaimed web show, “The Clarks!” She is committed to helping rescue dogs and produces fundraiser shows for Pets for Vets and other nonprofits through her company, Funny Girl Events.

Married to Stephanie Clark, Tom Clark has appeared on such shows as TBS’s “Conan O’Brien,” CBS’s “Late Late Show,” “The Bob & Tom Radio Show,” and Comedy Central’s “Premium Blend.” 

Clark has traveled nationally and internationally performing stand-up comedy and has also appeared on such shows as NBC’s “Outsourced,” TNT’s “The Closer,” and the Hallmark made-for-TV movie “The Wish List.”

Bruce Jingles’ comedic brand blends just the right amount of wit, impersonation, and essential timing. A man of many hobbies, Jingles captures a crowd with a propensity for marijuana, a love of comic books, and a soft spot for storytelling. 

He has taken his act all over the country and overseas to entertain troops as part of several USO tours. Jingles’ has been showcased on networks such as ABC, VH1, NUVOTV, two Showtime specials and has even appeared on TMZ.

Brian Kiley has appeared several times on “The Late Show with David Letterman,” “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno” and “Late Night with Conan O’Brien.” Kiley has been a staff writer for Conan O’Brien since 1994 and is currently the head monologue writer. 

He has been nominated for 16 Emmy Awards and is the winner of the 2007 Emmy Award for Writing in a Comedy/Variety Series. He has had a recurring role on the Cartoon Network’s “Delocated” and has been on “The Bonnie Hunt Show,“ Comedy Central Presents, The CBS Morning Show, and more.

Frazer Smith is not only one of the funniest comics on the LA scene today, he is also one of comedy’s most well-connected personalities. After 30 years in the business as a comedian, Frazer has made stops on numerous TV shows, as well as, being one of the nation’s most listened to Radio Jock’s on KLOS for many years.  

Frazer has also served as host on NBC’s” Rockin’ America.”

Before the show gets underway, the Youth Cultural Arts Foundation (YCAF) has put together a special pre-show performance beginning at 6:30  p.m. The Company Ink, a group of local improv comedians featuring Bick Brown, D.J. O’Hea, Kelsey Cole, and Lili Ari, will engage the audience with humor and skits. Shane Selloria, the 1st Place Winner at the recent YCAF Talent Show, will also share the pre-show spotlight with his comical puppeteering.

In addition to the show, each attendee will receive a “Buy 1 Entree, Get 1 Entree 50% off” dining discount at participating restaurants in the City of Bellflower. The dining promotion will be valid from December 21, 2017 to January 6, 2018.

The Bellflower Comedy Fest will serve up food for purchase prior to the show (prices vary-cash only) starting at 5:30 p.m. All attendees have an opportunity to win a variety of door prizes including $100 restaurant gift certificates, tickets to the Conan O’Brien Show, and more.

Participating restaurants include: Bellflower Diner, Bellko Korean BBQ, Chris’ & Pitt’s BBQ, Enrique’s Mexican Restaurant, Fantasy Cakes Bakery & Coffee, French Quarter Creole Bar & Grill, Fronk’s Barbecue, Hambone’s BBQ Bar & Grill, Johnny Rebs’, Marino’s Italian Restaurant, Omega Burgers, Ricci’s Italian Restaurant, Subway, and Toko Rame Indonesian Restaurant.

Shared Stories: My Family's Journey to Korea and Manchuria

Seeking economic opportunity in the years before World War II, Nobuyo Avery’s father moved his family from Japan to Korea, and then to Manchuria. They did not return to Japan until the end of the war. In this piece, Nobuyo recalls bits and pieces of her childhood. Shared Stories is a weekly column featuring articles by participants in a writing class at the Norwalk Senior Center. Bonnie Mansell is the instructor for this free class offered through the Cerritos College Adult Education Program. Curated by Carol Kearns

By Nobuyo Avery

Being a farmer’s second son, my father left home and worked as a salesman’s helper as young as age 13 or 14. He sold kimono and obi material, and he sold medicines, carrying a bag on his back and going from house to house. He thought he knew how to make money, but was unsuccessful in all the efforts he tried.

From early the early 1920’s to 1945 many Japanese people began searching for opportunities. Some Japanese moved to Hawaii, South and North America, Korea, and then Manchuria, seeking opportunities as farmers, businessmen, or engineers.  

My father dreamed to be rich making silk from the silkworms when he and other men went to Seoul, Korea, a new land for Japanese businessmen to prosper and succeed.  Our dad failed in the rice and charcoal shop and almost went bankrupt in business in Korea.  

Four of us were born in Seoul, Korea, and the fifth child, a boy, was born in Manchuria where we lived to the end of the Pacific War, or World War II.

Because my birthplace is not Japan but Seoul, Korea, I have been misunderstood and treated as if I were a Korean native. The U.S. government had to make sure that I was not a communist from North Korea when I came to the United States, asking me if I really was of Japanese nationality.

I often wondered why I must repeat that my parents are from Japan, and they happened to live in the foreign country. People did not understand that Korea and Manchuria were part of Japan until the end of World War II.

During the years in Seoul, Korea, my oldest sister remembers speaking in their language and playing with Korean children. She also recalls carrying brother on her back and babysitting for mom. Other people praised her for her works. I was too young to recall any of those years.

Recalling stories of my birth, I heard so many times my parents saying, “When you were born we were expecting a boy.” My oldest sister was 3 and another one was 2. My father must have been wishing for a boy. I had a complex that I should have been a boy for a long time.

It was common in those days to end girls’ names with “ko.” At the time of selecting my name, my dad had a new idea. “We named Yasuko and Jyunko, so the third daughter will be named Nobuyo instead of Nobuko.”  

The Chinese character “Nobu” is also pronounced “shin” or “shinjiru,” meaning: trust, faith, or believing. So I was stuck with the unusual name Nobuyo.

I was a very healthy baby and sucked my thumb for comfort. This habit lasted until I was age 8. One brother was born when I was 15 months old. Mom was really busy with the newborn and caring for three daughters besides helping her husband’s business in selling charcoal and rice. I am sure that my thumb helped me to sleep and calm me down.  

My oldest sister comments, “When you were a baby, you sat quietly with the dirty diaper without crying.” I did not fuss or complain when I was wet or messy, knowing that mother was too busy with caring for younger brother or customers in the shop. What a good baby I was!

My father decided to move to the new land Manchuria and open a new business. We moved from Korea to Hoten, Manchuria, when we were 5, 4, 2, and 1 years old. I cannot help but wonder how difficult it was for our parents to move with four little ones. Our youngest brother was born when I was 4.  

The winter in Hoten is very cold. After it snowed, there were piles of snow on the sidewalks here and there, and they were frozen solid.

One fine day young children were using the mound of snow piles as play areas, climbing and sliding. I joined them for fun, but my leg slipped and my face fell on sharply frozen snow that cut deeply above my right eyebrow. I was maybe 4 or 5 years old. How upset and worried my parents were to see my face covered with blood!

Mother must have used iodine after washing my wound with hydrogen peroxide to let it heal naturally. That was the first aid kit for her. I have a scar today to remember that accident.

Recently I met a Korean woman whose father was a successful silkworm businessman in the 1940’s. My father could have been a pioneer in this silkworm business.

Letter to the Editor: 5K a major inconvenience to church parishioners

Dear Editor:

I'm writing today to express my outrage at what occurred yesterday morning as I and others attempted to get to our places of worship on a bright Sunday morning.

Sure, I knew the parade was Sunday, but we've always been able to get to church (St. Mark's for me).

After seeing Downey Avenue closed, I went up Brookshire, just to find the road closed at Cherokee with the road blocked going both north and west. I needed to go west. I managed to squeak by the barriers, only to be yelled at by a city worker. Hearing that we were attempting to get to our church, he let us go, but not before telling us we wouldn't be able to "get out."

Arriving at church, I found others who were turned back and had to park several blocks away and walk. The capper was one of our members who is handicapped and in a wheelchair with a health aide. They were literally stopped by one of our fine officers in blue, made to surrender their driver's license and registration, and were told, "I'll be giving this information to the district attorney to follow up on." They did make it through, but were quite shaken.

Since when can a city prohibit citizens from engaging in their constitutional right to worship? I'm sure all the churches located on Downey Avenue had the same issue.

Whoever planned a 5K to be run on a Sunday morning, closing all the major roads through downtown Downey where all these churches are located, should have their head examined. I hope someone in city government, or the chamber of commerce, can figure out a more appropriate time for this activity.

Dan Vaughn

Shared Stories: Side by Side

Nothing is quite like a road trip, and Steve Zaragoza recounts a treasured memory of one with his father. Shared Stories is a weekly column featuring articles by participants in a writing class at the Norwalk Senior Center. Bonnie Mansell is the instructor for this free class offered through the Cerritos College Adult Education Program.  Curated by Carol Kearns.

By Steve Zaragoza
About midyear 1977 my dad decided to change jobs and move to Seattle in the area of Puyallup Valley and then later move to the small town of Milton.

When I would fly in to visit, Dad would pick me up at SEA-TAC airport at baggage pickup. I would usually fly up once or twice a year if time permitted. 

Our first stop would always be Pike Market Place. Sometimes we would have breakfast at Cutter’s Restaurant and we would each have a shot of Bailey’s as we looked out to the harbor and talked about grandkids and family.

Next was getting two loaves of sourdough bread, salami, cheese, beer, and wine, then head home where the party would start. We enjoyed these excursions several times a year when I came to visit.

Around summer of 2009 I had called my dad and asked what plans he had. We conversed and decided that I would fly to Seattle and stay a few days, then we would drive back to LA together.

When it was time for us to leave Seattle we packed the car in early morning and got ourselves comfortable. I was driving, Dad at shotgun and ready to go.

We decided to use mountain routes and the first stop is Mount St. Helen’s, at the top, Vista Point View.  Before the eruption the view was spectacular.  But then looking at the destruction, Mother Nature had carved a beauty of her own to reshape a new view to make a comeback.
We next crossed the Columbia River, very powerful, and we went into Hood City, also passing Mount Hood.  Just entering Bend, I noticed an RV dealership, and cruising past I saw an RV that I might like.  

I had said, “That’s what I want. Something small and light.”

My dad struggled with hearing loss, and his response was, “Yes, I don’t want to eat too much either.” I started laughing. It floored me, with what he said.

My dad laughed also and said, “What is it?” I told him I was talking about trailers, not food. He smiled and laughed also.

It’s time for new batteries for his hearing aid, I guess.

We spent the night in Bend. Next morning we headed to Crater Lake but didn’t see much because of the fog.

Leaving Oregon and passing Mt. Shasta we ended up in Redding.  After early dinner we got a motel room. I was able to back up the car to the room door.

Next morning Dad said, “I’ll take the car and get ice from the motel machine.”  About 30 minutes later he came back. I had grabbed some luggage to load but didn’t find the car. It was about five stalls down.    

I asked Dad why the car was so far down. He said, “That’s not the half of it.”

When he backed the car to the door, got out, and went into the room, it was empty.  No one was there and he was wondering where I went.  It was the wrong room!

There was plenty of laughter.  As we traveled on towards home onto Hwy 395, we stopped at places we both knew.

As I travel on, I now miss talking, laughing, and reminiscing about the past and present times.  Miss you, Dad.

Robert Lee Golay

May 31, 1927 - November 27, 2017

Robert Lee Golay Obit.jpg

Robert Lee Golay, 90, passed away peacefully, Monday, Nov 27, 2017, in the hospital surrounded by his family.  He was born May 31, 1927, in San Francisco, CA, the son of Howard and Inez Golay.

Robert was a graduate of the University of Arizona where he earned a BS Degree in Education.  Additionally, he completed many YMCA certification courses.  He was also a Veteran of the Korean Conflict.  

His YMCA career began in the Downtown Los Angeles YMCA where he first learned to swim as a kid, and later went on to become the Assistant Physical Education Director.   He became the Director of Health and Physical Education for the aquatic programs at both the Tucson YMCA and the YMCA in La Canada, CA, as well as a recognized swimming and diving coach.  In 1969 he became the Executive Director of the Downey YMCA.  He retired in 1991 after 42 years of service with the YMCA.  

Robert was awarded many honors over the years.  He was a Roberts-Gulick Memorial Award recipient and he received an award from the National YMCA for distinguished service to YMCA Aquatics.  He was named “Physical Education Director of the Year” by the Pacific Southwest Area YMCA’s and was awarded “Director of Physical Education” by Physical Education Society of North America.  One of his biggest honors happened in 1995 when he was inducted into the International Swimming Hall of Fame in Ft Lauderdale, FL for the Joseph G. Rogers Award.

Robert is survived by his wife, Mary.  They were married for 52 years.  He is also survived by his children, Lori (Eric) and Lani, 4 grandchildren Ryder, Riley, Madison and Lilliana, and cousins Donald Latimore and Carolyn Streety.  He was also preceded in death by his parents.

There will be a viewing on Tuesday, Dec. 5, at Rose Hills in Whittier, from 4-8pm.  A Memorial Service will be held at the First Presbyterian Church in Downey on Wednesday, Dec. 6, at 1:00 pm.  Memorials to either the Los Angeles YMCA or the Disabled American Veterans Association are appreciated.

Letter to the Editor: Keep the Energy Department

Dear Editor:

“The energy department produces no energy, let’s get rid of it.”

The above point was mentioned in an article published (11/23/17) by the Downey Patriot last week. I disagree wholeheartedly with that idea. Why? It does not make sense.

Energy is the lifeblood of this country and our society, and the role that the federal government plays in managing it is crucial to reduce our dependency on oil and other carbon fossil fuel sources.

With the catastrophic climate changes that we are experiencing in different parts of the world on a regular basis, we need to unite all our efforts to find solutions to global warming or we will destroy the world as we know it.

The mission of the Energy Department, that the writer is suggesting to eliminate, “is to ensure America's security and prosperity by addressing its energy, environmental and nuclear challenges through transformative science and technology solutions.”

We know that during the last 200 years we have had more CO2 (Carbon Dioxide) than thousands of years before the industrial revolution (1860). 

Before the Industrial Revolution, there were 250 (ppm) parts per million of CO2 in the air. Now it has reached 450 ppm.

We have the technology to solve this problem and we must for the sake of our children and our grandchildren.

What we need now is the will. Citizens’s Climate Lobby (CCL) is working for a common sense solution and is helping put together a bipartisan Climate Solutions Caucus with Democrats and Republicans, because the earth is not a Democrat or a Republican.

The Energy Department should not be abolished as it has been suggested to save money for the rich. On the contrary, we need people and more resources to tackle global warming issues.

The time is now.

Guido Rivero

Downey runner qualifies for Junior Olympic National Championships

 Distance runner Stephanie Hernandez will represent Downey at the national championships next week. Courtesy photo

Distance runner Stephanie Hernandez will represent Downey at the national championships next week. Courtesy photo

DOWNEY – Stephanie Hernandez from the Instride Track Club will be representing her team and the city of Downey in Tallahassee, Fla., for the USATF Junior Olympic National Championships on Dec. 9. 

Stephanie, 10, is a fifth-grader Old River Elementary School and is the only participant from this area.

Stephanie qualified as an individual at the Regional Championships held Nov. 19 in Santa Clarita. She completed the tough and hilly 3k course in 12:00. 

She is currently ranked in the top 18 in this region of southern California, Nevada and Hawaii. Hernandez’s goal is to place in the top 25 at Nationals which would make her an All-American.

The Instride Track Club relies heavily on donations and fundraisers in order to travel or participate at the championship meets. Any financial help to get Stephanie to Florida would be greatly appreciated. Donations can be made here.

Coach Eric Nilson can be contacted at with further questions and information.

Downey churches announce merger


DOWNEY – St. Mark’s Episcopal Church on Downey Avenue is inviting the public to attend the inauguration service on Sunday, December 3, of its merger with the congregation from the former Moravian Church of Downey.

With the approval of senior leadership in both denominations, St. Mark’s will become known by the new name:  St. Mark’s Espiscopal-Moravian Church.

St. Mark’s reports some tangible changes have already been implemented. The Moravian star has been mounted, and the open Bible is prominently displayed in the sanctuary. Orders have been placed for the Moravian Book of Worship and the church is planning an educational series for members to learn about each other’s unique traditions.

The former Moravian Church of Downey closed after 63 years last June when its congregation declined to the point where it could no longer maintain the facilities.