DVL Community BBQ July 8th Noon 7/2/14

Brian Jamison, DVFD Coordinator for the FFBI

 7/2/14 Brian Jamison, DVFD Coordinator for the FFBI

On Tuesday, July 8th at high noon aka 12:00 PM the Downieville Volunteer Fire Department  is inviting the community to a Barbecue luncheon at the Masonic Hall Tin Cup Diggins Park in Downieville where representatives of the Fire Fighters Burn Institute will be guests along with our County Supervisors and employees of Sierra County..

Downieville Volunteer Fire Department is a member of the FFBI Team and has been honored  for “commitment to improving burn care and recovery programs for firefighters and our communities.”Fill the Boot burns

A recent incident involving severe burns to a member of DVFD, Fire Fighter Tim Gascoigne, who was taken by helicopter to the UC Davis Burn Center after an accident with a propane fire in his home, demonstrated the responsiveness and help available to our community. Representatives of the FFBI went to the hospital and assisted the victim with his needs. Thankfully, the burns were superficial and no lung damage was apparent.

The FFBI was founded in 1973, about one year after the tragic jet plane crash into the Farrell’s Ice Cream Parlor in South Sacramento that took the lives of 22 people. There was no burn care in Sacramento at the time and Captain Cliff Haskell of the Sacramento Fire Department asked Sacramento Area Fire Fighters, Local 522 to assist him and together the FFBI was founded with a goal of establishing a burn unit in Sacramento. About one year later Sacramento’s first burn unit was established at U.C. Davis Medical Center.

Although firefighters are a major part of the Firefighters Burn Institute, FFBI provides burn survivor program support and prevention/education services to the entire community.

Deck of Cards 7/2/14

We are mistaken about Iraq

by Bert Sacks

Bert Sacks

Bert Sacks

“Those Iraqis have been fighting each other for centuries,” a friend recently said to me. I have heard this mistaken view too often.

I told him I had been to Iraq nine times, all before the 2003 U.S. invasion of Iraq. Not a single Iraqi ever said to me, “You need to know I’m Shiite” or “I should tell you I’m Sunni.” Not doctors, not taxi drivers, not hotel staff, not families we visited. Baghdad had many mixed marriages of Shiite and Sunni, as well as mixed neighborhoods. An Iraqi-American friend confirmed that often people didn’t know the religious sect of their neighbor – or if they did, they didn’t care.

Peace prevailed in the neighborhoods. What happened?

Expressing the conventional U.S. narrative, the columnist George Will recently wrote, “Saddam Hussein’s horrific tyranny at least controlled Iraq’s sectarian furies.” In his view, Saddam Hussein and his ruling Sunni regime so oppressed the Shiite majority in Iraq that they didn’t dare act violently against their oppressors. It follows from this belief that the current sectarian violence in Iraq is because Prime Minister Maliki hasn’t acted with enough horrific tyranny against the Sunni minority.

Is this narrative correct? Were Shiites a persecuted majority?

Do you remember the famous deck of cards given to American soldiers, with pictures of the key members of Saddam Hussein’s regime? If this story were true, of the deck of 55 cards why were 35 of them Shiites? Like it or not, Saddam Hussein was an equal opportunity employer and oppressor.

The major Shiite population in Iraq is in and around the city of Basra. Yet when the British troops arrived to liberate the oppressed Shiites of Basra, they were not welcomed. The Shiite population fought them off, seeing themselves first as Iraqis being invaded by foreigners. Some while later, two British soldiers were captured driving in Basra, dressed as Arabs and carrying explosives in their vehicle. This was reported in The Boston Globe for about two days, then the story disappeared from our press, as far as I could tell. What were they doing? Perhaps planting explosives in a Shiite mosque, the crime to be blamed on Sunnis¾certainly the 2006 bombing of the Shia Golden mosque was only attributed to (the predominantly Sunni) al-Qa’ida, never proven. They usually claim their actions.

When the U.S. created the Iraqi constitution – to bring “democracy” to Iraq – political parties were required to be based on religious affiliations. There was a Sunni party, a Shiite party, and so on. Imagine some foreign power occupying the U.S. and determining that future elections would be based on religious parties, with a Catholic party, a Protestant party, etc. How long would it take before people began to pay much more attention to who has what religious affiliation … and animosities to develop. Especially if the occupying power wanted to divide and conquer.

We need to recognize the truth of what respected Iraqi-American commentator Raed Jarrar said: “An uprising in these Sunni-dominated provinces in Iraq can be directly traced to the divisions that were installed by the U.S.-led occupation in 2003.” We must also recognize that Iraqi Prime Minister Maliki has aligned himself strictly with Shiites – and with Iran – and excluded Iraq’s Sunni minority. He has used his military powers to oppress nonviolent Sunni protesters, imprisoning, torturing, and killing.

Whatever role foreign fighters have played in the current crisis, without this persecution of Sunnis the mass uprising in the Sunni-dominated provinces would not have occurred. The fact that we are aligning the U.S. with the repressive, authoritarian regime of Iran to support Maliki’s continued sectarian violence ought to jar us awake into seeing how wrong this policy is: supporting Maliki’s own horrific tyranny with more U.S. military aid and force is what has brought us to this current crisis.

In short, one thing we can do is not to make matters worse by sending or using arms to continue the sectarian conflict which Prime Minister Maliki fomented with his violent repression of Sunnis.

Having been to Iraq so many times, it saddens me deeply to watch our country again turn to military actions based on mistaken views, when such actions create so much suffering and worsen the problems.

Bert Sacks writes for PeaceVoice and is a peace activist in Seattle.

Dianne’s Ponderings 7/2/14

STANDARDS FOR ‘MATURE DRIVERS’

Almost every week, we hear of elderly drivers being involved in accidents.

Dianne Severance

Dianne Severance

Elderly drivers face such challenges as slower reflexes, diminished cognition and vision or other medical problems. As a result, more and more states are passing laws to protect these drivers and prevent needless accidents. To date, 33 states out of 50 have laws concerning what is euphemistically called “mature drivers.”

In California, drivers above age 70 are required to appear in person to have their licenses renewed. I don’t know whether these sessions include vision or hearing or driving tests. But I do know that the problem has to be addressed in all the states.

Younger drivers have told me they think the age for testing mature drivers should be 55. Wow! I’m almost 75 and 55 seems as if it is far too young.

In Connecticut, where I live, older drivers have no restrictions other than choosing whether they want to renew their licenses in four or six years.

In my family, my sister had to take away my father’s car keys after he drove over a fallen tree and claimed he didn’t see it. Of course, Dad was rip-roaring mad at my sister, but the family doctor validated her actions and told my father to surrender his license. He was 83 at the time.

With today’s mobility, there should be a national standard for all drivers, including the elderly, starting at age 70. Such a standard should include vision and hearing tests and behind-the-wheel assessments. Older drivers might complain that such a process would be too costly, but surely lives can be saved.

If such a standard is passed, however, there will be a commensurate need for improved mass transit. Most cities and towns have some kind of shuttle service for senior citizens, but often the fees are too high and the service either limited in hours or sporadic. As the nation ages, we cannot afford to underserve our elderly citizens’ transit needs.

Classic Cars in Calpine 7/2/14

I wanted to let you know that GARY WILLIAMS has
kindly offered to co-ordinate the CLASSIC CARS
at Calpine Marketplace this year – Saturday,
September 6.

If you, or if know anyone who has a CLASSIC CAR/TRUCK/VEHICLE
who may be interested in joining the Marketplace festivities…
please have them contact:

GARY WILLIAMS
PHONE: 916-791-7364
EMAIL: SLWilliams@surewest.net

Summer Tennis 7/2/14

TENNIS LESSONS

Lessons are every Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Children from ages 5 through 11 will take to the court at 8:00 and those from ages 12 through 17 will start at 9:00. Some exceptions will be made for families with two or more children to save on shuttling. If you have a child between the ages of 5 and 17 that would like to participate in this summer’s program, please call Paul at 530-289-1018 or email him at pdouville@att.net. Prior notice is not required. You can just bring your child on any of the scheduled days. There is no charge for this opportunity although donations are very welcomed.

tennislessonkidsThe lessons of courtesy, respect and cooperation will continue to be emphasized along with the many other skills that organized life-long sports can foster. Board members of the tennis organization are Tom Potter, Bryan Davey, Kristy Folsom, and Tim Beals.

 

Update on WSMC 6/28/14

Following is all of the information presented to the WSMC Board of Directors on Wednesday, June 25, 2014. The response to the presentation was an email from CEO Scott McFarland saying the Board of Directors voted to continue to provide after hour coverage and Monday through Friday clinical staffing for the next two month This provides time for members of my staff and committee member from DV to continue discussions.”

PRESENTATION TO THE WESTERN SIERRA MEDICAL CLINIC
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Wednesday, June 25, 2014
By Ingrid Larson & Jacie Epperson, representing DCAC

INTRODUCTION:

My name is Ingrid Larson. I am a resident of Downieville. I am chairperson of the Downieville Clinic Advisory Committee . This committee recently formed in reaction to your proposed decrease in services in Downieville This Committee is supported by the Western Sierra County community. Over 150 residents attended the recent “forum” and at least 75 have been actively attending our committee meetings. Many are writing letters. I have brought copies, including a recent letter from Congressman LaMalfa to Scott McFarland.

We are not here to tell you how to manage the Clinic. Rather, we are here to point out the critical necessity of continuing 24/7 emergency & urgent care in Downieville. Otherwise, both residents and visitors are at risk.

Our proposals and comments are intended to show you, the Board of Directors, that there are alternative solutions that can be developed and our Committee is dedicated to that end.

History of 24/7 care in Downieville

The Western Sierra County community has had daily clinic services for 38 years including response to medically urgent and emergency situations on a 24/7 basis.

We believe the community has the right to continued 24/7 services.

We believe 24/7 is a “required service” for this community under the 330 Grant
We are a “frontier” county
We are over an hour drive to the nearest medical facility
24/7 care has always been a part of our Mission Statement;
it was part of the original 330 Grant;
it was part of the Merger with Miner’s Clinic;
it is required by the Sierra County Jail medical services Contract
it is part of the most recent 330 Grant application:

“WSMC in Sierra County is the only medical facility that is available twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week to provide services to our County’s permanent population of 3,174 and the only medical providers available to the 687,000 tourists who visit the two national forests in Sierra County each year.”
Community Participation
We believe that the community has the right to participate in a dialogue with the Clinic before decisions are made that substantially impact services in Downieville. That is why we are here today.

Risks of proposed cuts

The basis for our requested delay in the proposed cuts is the real risk of morbidity and mortality.

So, I defer at this time to Jacie Epperson is an R.N. and the EMS Supervisor for Downieville Ambulance. Jacie:

Downieville Ambulance EMS: by Jacie Epperson (see Jacie’s presentation)
Proposed Interim Schedule

We propose an Interim Schedule for the next 6 months so more time can be spent working out a viable solution regarding services in Downieville.

The proposed Interim Schedule provides for a rotation among 3 providers and will continue 24/7 coverage.

One person will work Monday through Thursday, 8 hours per day in the Clinic and 16 hours of on call coverage Monday through Wednesday.  A second provider will start on Thursday at 5 PM and will take calls until Monday morning at 8 AM.  That provider will also work in the Clinic on Friday for 8 hours and will take regular appointments for Saturday and will respond to all urgent care and emergency care needs during the on call hours.  The third provider rotates every other Thursday night through Monday morning.

Benefit to Grass Valley clinic:

We believe our proposal will benefit the Grass Valley Clinic and its backlog of new patients. We suggest that some of those patients could be seen in Downieville as a way to get them into the system. Some Grass Valley patients are already doing this. This would better utilize the Downieville Providers and create a more cohesive Provider Team.
CLOSING:

It is our belief that the proposed change in services requires a formal change in scope through HRSA before it can be enacted, because the Board’s proposal is, in fact, a dramatic and substantial decrease in the scope of service in Downieville rather than a mere change to the hours of operation.

Currently, medical care coverage in Downieville is 8760 hours a year [365 days x 24 hours]

Your motion reduces the medical care coverage to only 1248 hours [52 weeks x 3 days at 8 hours per day]

This is a reduction of 86 % in medical care coverage in Downieville.
And, we submit that the logical consequences of your decision, which cannot be ignored include the very existence of Western Sierra Medical Clinic in its entirety being jeopardized and the risk of losing lives.

Therefore, in closing

We respectfully request that you vote today to suspend further implementation of your May 22, 2014 decision regarding the decrease in the Downieville Clinic hours pending further dialogue with the community towards a workable solution.

We request that you ask management to implement an interim schedule like the one proposed here starting when the current Downieville Provider leaves, through January 3, 2015.
Final Remarks
We are convinced that the co-existence of both clinics is advantageous to the mission of the entire organization
We want the people of Western Sierra County to continue having the outstanding medical care they have had for the last 38 years.
We do not want to lose any more services than we have since the merger:
We have lost Physical Therapy Services, Dental Services have been reduced, Behavioral Health Services have been changed to Telemedicine, we have lost direct Nutrition Services, our RN case management services have been shifted to Grass Valley, and now our days of service and hours of critical care coverage are on the verge of being reduced.
We urge that financial adjustments be found elsewhere than Downieville.
It is not only about money; it is about people and saving lives.
We want to work with you.
Please, work with us. We respectfully request that you give this matter your utmost consideration.  Thank you.

Downieville Ambulance EMS Supervisor Jacie Epperson

Downieville EMS Ambulance
The ambulance service operates 3 ambulances to cover the entire portion of the western side of Sierra County. This encompasses 500 square miles of mountainous area. Our response area borders the Yuba Pass to the north, the Plumas County line in the Lakes Basin Recreation area and finally to the Yuba County line to the south. The response area encompasses the towns of Sierra City, Downieville, Pike City and Alleghany. We have two ALS ambulances stationed in Downieville and one BLS ambulance stationed in Alleghany.
We are staffed by volunteer EMTs, AEMTs and an RN who respond to calls 24/7/365. Nor Cal EMS protocols are followed for each call and the AEMTs practice under Limited ALS protocols. We have a total of 8 personnel who are active responders. Responders do not have a duty to remain in the area, so the number of available personnel varies. They are not paid for on call. They are only paid for the time they spend with the patient in the ambulance.
Our personnel response time to the ambulance is usually under five minutes.
Our response time to the scene varies depending on the location of the call. Trail rescues for injured mountain bikers may take more than an hour to get to the victim.
We do not have a hospital in Sierra County, therefore the patients must travel to Grass Valley, Truckee or Portola (summer only), an average of 50 to 60 miles over windy mountain roads.
Our transport times are 1.5 hours which means that an ambulance and crew are out of the response area for 3 to 4 hours.
It is possible that we may have back to back calls, multiple calls at the same time or an incident for which we need both ambulances on scene.
Helicopter transports are required for the most critical trauma and medical patients in which time is a major factor. Inclement weather can be a factor in this response.
So, I ask each of you, what happens to the sick or injured person who needs assistance and they are within the confines of a town and could seek help at the clinic or from the provider on call at the clinic? Will they be forced to drive 50 to 60 miles to the nearest hospital before they can have medical intervention because the clinic is closed? Telemedicine will not be the answer. Telemedicine cannot push the narcotics for pain control, or the ACLS drugs that are needed. Sick and injured need the human interaction with the provider.
I would like you to imagine that you are visiting our area and you fall and break a hip or leg, or you have chest pain, perhaps you are having a heart attack and need immediate medical intervention. Are you willing to go without the advanced life support intervention that is required and that is beyond the scope of practice of the AEMTs in Sierra County? How would you feel if something happened to a child of yours and they had to wait for help because the clinic was not available? These are the situations that we are faced with if you choose to stop provider coverage at the Downieville clinic, 24/7.
For the EMS personnel, you are removing our designated alternate base station, our safety net for EMS. I believe that this move will place our residents and visitors who fall ill or become injured in jeopardy. People will die.

Since January 1, 2014 until June 23, 2014, Downieville ambulance has responded to 67  9-1-1 calls. 59 of these calls resulted in transports.
37 calls were ALS and 22 calls were BLS.
49 calls were after clinic hours of 08:30 to 17:00 or 73%.
Weekend calls: 26 total or 39%
Holiday when clinic was closed: 1
52 contacts or 78% were made with the clinic either by phone, radio and/or clinic notification during dispatches.
9 transports were terminated at the Downieville clinic.
The clinic provider accompanied the patient on the ambulance on 12 of these calls or 18%. 9 of these calls were after clinic hours or 75%.

Downieville ambulance strives to provide the best possible care in the timeliest manner to achieve the best possible out comes for our patients. The Downieville WSMC site providers and the EMS system have a collaborative team approach for patient care, and we are proud of how successful this collaboration has proven to be. We know they are there when we need them.
Cancelling the 24/7 care will place barriers to getting our patients the best care possible. It is a necessity, not a nicety.
Please consider carefully what the consequences of your decision ,for those of us who live and visit in Sierra County , will be.

Letters to the WSMC Board of Directors:

1841_001 1841_002 1841_003 1841_004 1841_005 1841_0061842_001 1842_002 1842_003 1842_004 1842_005 1842_006 1842_007 1842_008

Francis Earl “Sonny” Sawyer 7/2/14

Obituary: Francis Earl Sawyer Jr.Paul-Kate_1934-266x400

By the Sawyer Family September 6, 2013

Francis Earl Sawyer Jr., our beloved husband, father, friend, and colleague, passed away peacefully at his home on Wednesday, August 28, 2013, after a five-month battle with Acute Myeloid Leukemia.

Frank/Sonny/Fes/The Kid was born on May 10, 1943, in Kentfield, Marin County, to Francis Earl Sawyer of San Rafael and Lois Kathleen Sawyer (Fenton) of Mill Valley.

As a small child his family moved to Sierra City, where the wilds of the Sierra Buttes and the North Fork of the Yuba River became the backdrop for his childhood adventures. Frank’s entrepreneurial spirit was apparent at a young age. By 10 he was loading the shelves of the family’s Sierra Country Store, at 12 he made a killing selling hellgrammites to fishermen, and at 14 he started Sonny Sawyer’s Sierra City Supersonic Sanitation Service, hauling trash for local businesses.

Frank graduated from Downieville High School and attended the University of California at Berkeley where he was a member of Phi Kappa Sigma. He took a break from academia to tour Europe in a red Volkswagen bug purchased off the assembly line. He returned to serve in the U.S. Navy aboard the USS Graffias as a quartermaster during the Vietnam War.

Frank graduated from California State University, Sacramento, with a Bachelor’s Degree in Civil Engineering. Frank met his wife, Donna, in 1969 and they were married in Sacramento in 1973.

In 1978 Frank and Donna moved to Redding where Frank started a partnership with John Dunlap.

The two later joined with John Sharrah to become Sharrah Dunlap Sawyer. Frank became president in 1998, when partnering with Greg Dunbar, Mike Dormer, and Tim MacLean. He served as Project Civil Engineer on many key development projects throughout the North State including Redding City Hall, Crossroads Shopping Center, Foothill High School, McConnell Foundation Headquarters, Knauf Fiberglass, the Sundial Bridge at Turtle Bay, and numerous residential subdivisions.

Despite the firm’s many accolades, Frank took the most pride in building a company people loved to work for. In 2007, SDS was selected by Civil Engineering News as the top small civil engineering firm to work for in the nation.

Frank was a Past President and long-time member of Anderson Rotary. He was a board member for the Redding Chamber of Commerce and served on many community and government advisory committees. Frank loved Redding and felt lucky to have built his company and raised his family here. He was well known and respected within the local community, and was a mentor to many.

Frank was an avid fly fisherman from a young age and approached the sport with engineer-like intensity and focus, documenting his methods, successes, and failures with detailed notes and drawings. He made it his goal to fish every stream in Northern California and bragged that he knew many of the fish in his favorite spots by name.

Frank was an incredible listener and always put the needs of others before his own. He never took the simple things for granted, and remarked daily how blessed he was to have such great family and friends. Given the chance to do it all again, he said he wouldn’t change a thing.

His creativity and childlike curiosity kept him busy even in retirement. He was never bored. Frank loved tending his garden, shooting the breeze with his fly-fishing buddies on the Fall River, journaling, artwork and photography, and his post-retirement 4-o’clock gin and tonic. He enjoyed a good laugh, a game of cribbage, a spin around the dance floor with his wife, and a tall glass of milk.

He leaves behind a loyal group of friends, reprobates, colleagues, and a family inspired by his surplus of optimism and infectious amusement with the world. His legacy lives on through his amazing wife, Donna, son David and wife Ryan of Fair Oaks, daughter Kate and husband Paul of Oakland, his sister, Patricia Sullivan, and his mother-in-law, Audrey Duane Muzzillo. His final accomplishment was being able to meet his two beautiful granddaughters, Frances and Reese.

Memorial donations can be made to the Frank Sawyer Memorial Fund at North Valley Bank. Donations will fund improvements of Henderson Open Space, the eastern span riverfront just south of Cypress Avenue Bridge. This was his favorite fly-fishing spot.

Sheriff Asks Help on Cold Case 6/26/14

Sierra County Sheriff’s Officeimage003

lucchesi_todd

TODD E. LUCCHESI

Missing Since: May 31, 1999 from Downieville, California
Classification: Endangered Missing
Date of Birth: September 22, 1970
Height and Weight: 5’5, 135 pounds
Distinguishing Characteristics: Caucasian male. Brown hair, hazel eyes.

On Friday 20 June 2014 the Sierra County Sheriff’s Office assigned a new investigator on a “cold case” missing person. The missing person is: Todd E. LUCCHESI, born in 1970 of Fremont California and locally tied to a family cabin in Sierra City. Todd was reported as a missing person on 1 June 1999 while visiting the family cabin. Despite an exhaustive search by numerous agencies, friends and family members and citizen volunteers no sign of Todd has been found.

Sheriff John Evans is asking the public for help in the event that something has been found and not previously reported or in the event a memory has been rekindled of the matter or perhaps someone is willing to come forward now who may have been reluctant in the past.

It has been 15 years and Todd’s family is still waiting for an answer as to what happened to him. Anyone with information is asked to contact the sheriff’s office. The case has been assigned to Deputy Sheriff Graham Beatie. You may also leave confidential information directly to Sheriff John Evans by calling the toll-free line of: (888) 2-SHERIFF or (888) 274-3743. Todd’s photograph is below.

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