West Seattle Blog... » West Seattle people http://westseattleblog.com West Seattle news, 24/7 Mon, 27 Apr 2015 04:44:12 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.4.2 PHOTOS: Seattle Lutheran’s Ring of Honor tribute for Bob Dowding http://westseattleblog.com/2015/04/photos-ring-of-honor-tribute-for-seattle-lutheran-hss-bob-dowding/ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/04/photos-ring-of-honor-tribute-for-seattle-lutheran-hss-bob-dowding/#comments Mon, 20 Apr 2015 00:40:04 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=307617

Two months after cancer claimed the life of longtime Seattle Lutheran High School teacher and athletic director Bob Dowding, the school gave him its ultimate tribute last night – induction into the SLHS Ring of Honor. That came during a dinner event in which many memories were shared.

That’s head of school Dave Meyer, who talked about arriving in 1995 to be Hope Lutheran‘s PE teacher, and meeting Bob, joking that he wanted the SLHS AD job that Bob held. He came to realize that Bob’s real job was creating and building communities – including at athletic organizations including the Washington Interscholastic Athletics Association. And, Meyer said, he still aspires to Bob’s “real job” – mentoring and encouraging kids, and building community. One of those Bob had mentored also spoke:

Holy Names Academy athletic director Lacey London, a 2000 SLHS graduate, talked about how Bob was such a big influence in her decision to go into teaching and athletics. Her first coaching job was when he asked her to help with Lutheran’s girls-basketball team while she was transitioning between colleges. Among the many others there to pay tribute to Bob – his family, receiving the plaque honoring him:

There was even a cake in his honor:

Bob Dowding was 67 years old.

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Services planned May 15th for James D. Finnie, 1946-2015 http://westseattleblog.com/2015/04/services-planned-may-15th-for-james-d-finnie-1946-2015/ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/04/services-planned-may-15th-for-james-d-finnie-1946-2015/#comments Sun, 19 Apr 2015 21:21:13 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=307587 A memorial service and celebration of life are planned May 15th for James D. Finnie, 68, whose family is sharing this remembrance:

The family of Jim Finnie is sad to announce his passing on March 30, 2015, after a long journey with early-onset Alzheimer’s. Jim was born in West Seattle on April 19, 1946, to Walt and Millie Finnie, the youngest of their five children.

After graduation from West Seattle High School in 1964, Jim married Marge in 1965 while they were attending Western Washington State College, only to have the military decide they needed him a short time later. He served in the US Army from 1966-69, most of that time in Germany, where he and Marge enjoyed many adventures together.

In 1975, Jim began his career as a Seattle firefighter, and always felt fortunate to be paid to do something he loved so much. The majority of his career was served at local Station 32.

Outside of work, Jim had many interests and skills- woodworking, golf, competitive shooting, and countless hours out on the Sound, with a fishing pole in one hand and a cup of coffee in the other (his idea of heaven!). He had a top-notch “Mr Fix-It” ability that led us all to believe there was nothing he couldn’t do. To all that he did, he brought his quirky sense of humor, and a smile, to those around him.

He was a loving and supportive husband and father, which led him to spend many years working with the Boy Scouts and driving the Kennedy High School band bus to assorted parades and retreats. He was enormously proud of his children.

He leaves behind his beloved wife Marge, and children Dave (Christy) Finnie and Krista (David) Hume. Six grandchildren: Alexa, Jessica, Sienna, Elijah, Rebecca, and Joshua. Predeceased by his parents and sister, Delores, and survived by brothers Bob (Durlyn) and Walt (Sharon) and sister Linda (Norm) Nelson.

Services to be held May 15, 1:00 pm, at Tahoma National Cemetery in Kent, followed by a celebration of life at the West Seattle Golf Course clubhouse, 2:30 pm. Suggested memorials to Medic One or West Seattle High School Alumni Association Scholarship fund.

(WSB publishes West Seattle obituaries by request, free of charge. Please e-mail the text, and a photo if available, to editor@westseattleblog.com)

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West Seattle scene: Mayor’s lunchtime visit to Senior Center http://westseattleblog.com/2015/04/west-seattle-scene-mayors-lunchtime-visit-to-senior-center/ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/04/west-seattle-scene-mayors-lunchtime-visit-to-senior-center/#comments Fri, 17 Apr 2015 02:49:37 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=307307

Mayor Ed Murray was back in The Junction today, less than three weeks after his walking-tour/coffee-conversation stop. His stop at the Senior Center of West Seattle wasn’t an official speech/town-hall type visit, just an informal lunchtime conversation, though he took the microphone for a moment. Below, that’s center director Lyle Evans at left:

P.S. The Senior Center has a big series of classes coming up for people who might not think they are Senior Center-age yet … “Things to Know Now That You’re 50.” See the summary and sign up here.

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Meet West Seattle Helpline’s new executive director Chris Langeler http://westseattleblog.com/2015/04/meet-west-seattle-helplines-new-executive-director-chris-langeler/ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/04/meet-west-seattle-helplines-new-executive-director-chris-langeler/#comments Thu, 16 Apr 2015 06:41:29 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=307107 He’s been on the job a few weeks, but in case you haven’t met him yet, West Seattle Helpline is officially announcing its new executive director, Chris Langeler:

West Seattle Helpline, a nonprofit social service agency offering emergency assistance for West Seattle residents, is pleased to welcome Chris Langeler as the new Executive Director. Mr. Langeler comes to West Seattle Helpline with years of experience in fundraising, social services, community development, management, and working with underserved individuals and families from diverse backgrounds.

Most recently, he managed the political campaigns for Washington State House of Representatives Speaker Frank Chopp and State Representative Brady Walkinshaw of Seattle during the 2014 election cycle. He is on the Board of Directors for the Delridge Neighborhood Development Association and volunteers at Southwest Youth and Family Services and at High Point Community Center.

Mr. Langeler earned his Master of Science in Community Research & Action at Vanderbilt University in 2013 and a Master of Public Administration from the University of Washington in 2015. Previously, he served as the Director of Research for the National Mobile Market, an organization dedicated to providing access to affordable, healthy food to food insecure neighborhoods nationwide. Prior to that, he worked in Portland, Oregon at the Boys and Girls Aid Society, a program to support youth transitioning out of the juvenile justice system.

“We are so excited to have Chris on board! With his solid experience and passion for our mission, Chris is going to have a huge impact on West Seattle families in need”, said Brooks Riendl, President of West Seattle Helpline’s Board of Directors.

Helpline’s next big event is the Taste of West Seattle, celebrating its 10th anniversary, coming up May 21st – ticket info is in our preview.

(Photo credit: WSB’s Patrick Sand)

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Good luck! Local team in statewide Science Olympiad this Saturday http://westseattleblog.com/2015/04/good-luck-local-team-in-statewide-science-olympiad-this-saturday/ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/04/good-luck-local-team-in-statewide-science-olympiad-this-saturday/#comments Tue, 14 Apr 2015 18:11:26 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=307017

Good luck to Evergreen Science, a 15-member team of 6th-through-9th-grade-age homeschool students from West Seattle and South Seattle who are headed to a big competition this Saturday: The state-level Science Olympiad, to be held at Highline College in Des Moines. If they win, they’ll go to the National Science Olympiad, which will be held at the University of Nebraska in mid-May. Christine Ranegger e-mailed to let us know about Evergreen Science and pointed us to the official SO website for this explanation:

Science Olympiad competitions are like academic track meets, consisting of a series of 23 team events in each division (Division B is middle school; Division C is high school). Each year, a portion of the events are rotated to reflect the ever-changing nature of genetics, earth science, chemistry, anatomy, physics, geology, mechanical engineering and technology. By combining events from all disciplines, Science Olympiad encourages a wide cross-section of students to get involved. Emphasis is placed on active, hands-on group participation. Through Science Olympiad, students, teachers, parents, principals and business leaders bond together and work toward a shared goal.

Teamwork is a required skill in most scientific careers today, and Science Olympiad encourages group learning by designing events that forge alliances. In Elevated Bridge, an engineering whiz and a kid from wood shop can become gold medalists. Similarly, a talented builder and a student with a good science vocabulary can excel in Write It Do It, one of Science Olympiad’s most popular events.

This is the team’s third year of competition and second year making it to state, where they placed sixth last year but are hoping to win it all this time. The parent-coached team meets every Monday morning at a home in Admiral, and its subgroups have been getting together inbetween to train in their specific events; Evergreen Science also has been crowdfunding to cover expenses. They’ll know by Saturday night if those expenses will include a trip to Nebraska – Christine promises to let us know how they do!

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Memorial on Wednesday for Barbara Cough Shea, 1930-2015: ‘Her generous spirit and love of fun live on’ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/04/memorial-on-wednesday-for-barbara-cough-shea-1930-2015-her-generous-spirit-and-love-of-fun-live-on/ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/04/memorial-on-wednesday-for-barbara-cough-shea-1930-2015-her-generous-spirit-and-love-of-fun-live-on/#comments Mon, 13 Apr 2015 02:39:12 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=306908 Barbara Cough Shea, who lived for more than 35 years in West Seattle, will be remembered at a funeral Mass on Wednesday (April 15). Here’s the remembrance her family is sharing, telling the story of the many chapters of her life:

Barbara was born April 23, 1930, in Norridgewock, Maine, to Bernard Ezra “Bun” Cough and Helen Norton Cough. She grew up in Bar Harbor on Mount Desert Island, Maine, the second oldest and fast friend of her three siblings, Sonny, Janis and Jimmy. Her entrepreneurial and ever-scheming father had the family moving frequently around the town and pitching in on various family ventures. Her mother Helen was always there for her children.

Barbara graduated Bar Harbor High School and went on to attend college in Boston, where she reveled in the excitement and freedom of the city. Back in Bar Harbor during a break from school, she caught the attention of a college boy on vacation from studies in Miami. Barbara’s father was quite impressed to learn the “boy” was Bob Greive, a Washington state senator and law student. Barbara’s father arranged for her to transfer to school in Miami to encourage the romance. Bob and Barbara were married in Miami, just weeks before her 20th birthday. He was 29.

Following his law school graduation, Barbara and Bob settled in West Seattle, where they raised their six children. Barbara and the children were fixtures in the back pew of Holy Rosary Church during Sunday Mass while Bob ushered. She earned a reputation for her grace and elegance even as she wrangled squirming toddlers. She kept up appearances at daily Mass when slacks were taboo, hiding her pant legs by rolling them up above the hem of her long coat. She was a member of the Holy Rosary School Mothers Club for 18 years.

A tireless politician’s wife through her entire marriage, she played hostess, managed direct mail operations for many election campaigns, and moved the family every two years to Olympia for the legislative session.

Barbara loved being a mother. She was an intelligent, independent thinker who treated each child as an individual. Her children learned from her insatiable intellectual curiosity, generous spirit, moral strength and playful nature. And each inherited a version of Barbara’s distinctive guffaw.

Creative and industrious, Barbara developed and printed photos of her children in her own darkroom, sewed matching Easter dresses for her three girls, knit sweaters by machine for friends and family, and with her boys became an early and lifelong Apple computer loyalist. An accomplished quilter, she later combined her love of sewing and computers by embracing machine embroidery.

With her children grown, Barbara remarried, to Charles Law, a retired West Seattle attorney. They lived in Tacoma and enjoyed travel and many adventures in the short time they had together. Charlie died suddenly after just two years.

Barbara continued to attend St. Theresa’s Church in Tacoma where her friendship with David Shea blossomed. They married in 1994. They lived in Normandy Park briefly, then made their home in Des Moines. They traveled together in Europe, Canada and Mexico, across the U.S., and made the drive to Mesa, Arizona, every fall. In Mesa, they enjoyed a lively circle of friends. Barbara took and taught computer classes several times a week.

She continued with her love of travel and history, taking river trips from France to Turkey to Russia with her sister Janis and daughter Kathleen. An avid reader, Barbara was never without a book. She made microloans to women entrepreneurs in Africa, one of the many ways she lived her own brand of feminism. Barbara never completely lost her Maine accent and remained ever proud of her identity as a Cough.

She died April 9, 2015, unable to recover after major surgery. She will always be remembered for her ability to develop deep connections with new acquaintances and her many lifelong friends. Her generous spirit and love of fun live on in us all.

Barbara is survived by her husband of 21 years, David W. Shea. She was preceded in death by her husbands R.R. “Bob” Greive and Charles Law, and her siblings Bernard K. “Sonny” Cough, James Preston “Jimmy” Cough and Janis Cough Robbins. She also is survived by her daughter Bernadette Greive Lucas and her husband Leo Lucas of Hollywood, California; daughter Mary Greive Isar and her husband Andrew Isar, Gig Harbor; daughter Kathleen Greive Deakins and her husband Garald Deakins, Des Moines; son Raymond Peter Greive and his wife Nancy White Greive, Bellevue; son James Joseph “J.J.” Greive and his wife Suzanne Greive, Burien; son Thomas John Greive and his wife Diana Greive, Seattle; and grandchildren Gabriel Long, Kristin Long, Matthew Long, Brian John Deakins, Rae Anne Deakins, Paul Greive, Joseph Greive, and Marie Haley Greive.

A funeral Mass for Barbara will be celebrated Wednesday, April 15, 11 a.m., at St. Philomena Church in Des Moines. In lieu of flowers, contributions in Barbara’s memory may be made to Catholic Community Services and Catholic Relief Services.

(WSB publishes West Seattle obituaries by request, free of charge. Please e-mail the text, and a photo if available, to editor@westseattleblog.com)

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OPEN LETTER: A grandmother says ‘thank you,’ and wonders about safety, after 4-year-old’s Alki seawall fall http://westseattleblog.com/2015/04/open-letter-a-grandmother-says-thank-you-and-wonders-about-safety-after-4-year-olds-alki-seawall-fall/ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/04/open-letter-a-grandmother-says-thank-you-and-wonders-about-safety-after-4-year-olds-alki-seawall-fall/#comments Sun, 12 Apr 2015 04:31:51 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=306870

That’s 4-year-old Aaron, photographed before a fall off the Alki seawall left him badly hurt. His grandmother Teri has written an open letter both to say thanks to the strangers who helped, and to voice concerns about safety:

On Tuesday, April 7th, at approximately 5:30 pm, my husband David, my 4-year old grandson Aaron and I were riding bikes along the 1300 block of Alki Avenue. We were in the bike lane, with Aaron following David, and I was bringing up the rear so I could keep a watchful eye on Aaron. Part way through the ride, Aaron apparently decided he wanted to ride along the path on the other side of the sidewalk and veered off in that direction. Despite my calls for him to stop, Aaron continued on toward the path and the unprotected bulkhead. He managed to stop his bike before it went over the edge, but he went flying over the handlebars and over the edge of the bulkhead, landing face first on the boulders 6-8 feet below street level.

As I scrambled off my bike and ran, horrified, toward where I had just seen Aaron flying over the wall, passersby had already leapt into action. By the time I got to the edge, there were people down on the rocks lifting the very terrified Aaron up to safety. Others standing around also clamored to help, and one woman was an absolute angel. She sat with Aaron and kept him talking, focusing on calming him down while we waited for the 911 response team that was summoned by still others. I was in a state of shock at the time and can’t tell you enough how grateful I am to all of these people who stepped up to help us.

Fortunately, Aaron was properly outfitted with a Bern bike helmet at the time of his accident. Without it, he would not be with us today. This helmet literally saved his life. It was cracked and dented as a result of the fall, clearly showing us where significant brain damage was avoided. I am now a staunch bike-helmet advocate! I see so many children out riding bikes with helmets that are ill-fitting and barely more than a styrofoam hat in the shape of a shark, unicorn, or kitty and wonder whether one of these helmets would have stopped the significant damage that was avoided by wearing the well-fitting, hard-shell Bern helmet. Our children and grandchildren are irreplaceable, so only the best in protection is good enough for them.

Aaron spent just under 4 days at Harborview, and was helped by many fine, caring doctors and nurses both in the Emergency Room and PICU. Our eternal gratitude goes out to them as well.

At Harborview, we learned that Aaron had fractured his skull. He also had several fractures around both eye orbitals, multiple deep nose fractures, and his upper right jaw was fractured as well. Right now he is back home, and back to playing with his trains and cars, colors and crafts as he continues to heal. The doctors are waiting for the significant eye swelling to subside before they can determine whether he is in need of surgery to repair some of the fractures as there is the possibility that they may be impinging facial nerves and eye muscles. Right now we call him our little puffer fish!

Since the accident, we have heard that there have been several other incidents along the unprotected stretch that runs around Alki Avenue and drops off to large boulders. I walk that path several afternoons a week, and with the warmer weather I am seeing more and more children along the way either walking, running, or riding scooters and bikes. Knowing how the younger ones can rapidly dart away and put themselves in danger, I have to wonder what the City of Seattle can do to make this a safer place for us all. We came so close to losing a precious 4 year old that day. God forbid another child, or even an adult, is lost forever due to a slip or fall and lack of fencing along this area.

We don’t know who any of the people are who helped us on the beach last Tuesday, but we really want to extend our heartfelt gratitude to them for them being there and stepping up to help. I don’t know what we would have done without their help! We are blessed to live in a community with so many caring people.

Teri says they *do* know some of Aaron’s rescuers – the Seattle Fire Department personnel – and that they plan to visit those fire stations soon (the log from Tuesday shows units from 3 stations) to say thanks in person.

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Mass, reception next Thursday for Jack Meduna, 1946-2015 http://westseattleblog.com/2015/04/mass-reception-next-thursday-for-jack-meduna-1946-2015/ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/04/mass-reception-next-thursday-for-jack-meduna-1946-2015/#comments Sat, 11 Apr 2015 00:17:13 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=306782 Jack Meduna will be remembered with a Mass at Holy Family and reception at Forest Lawn next Thursday. Here’s the remembrance his family is sharing:

Jack Meduna, 68, of West Seattle, passed away April 2nd after fighting Lung Cancer for almost a year.

He was born in Seattle on December 18th, 1946. At a young age he attended Briscoe Boarding School for boys, then went on to graduate from O’Dea. He began pre-med at the UW but was drafted to Vietnam. Upon his return, he worked on a fishing boat in Alaska until finding his calling as a Seattle Police Officer. For 34 years, Jack absolutely loved his career with SPD and was also a Hostage Negotiator. He loved interacting with the public and all his fellow officers.

In 1986 Jack married for the second time and found the love of his life, Virgie.

They spent 23 years together, often traveling the Oregon Coast and eventually all over Europe before she passed 7 years ago. Jack is survived by his daughters Jill Casillas (husband Shane), Cami Aksdal (husband Todd) and son Clay Johnson (wife Amanda), and by his four grandchildren, Sydney Jaksich, Corbin Jaksich, Georgia Lee Aksdal, and Michael Aksdal and his sisters Vinette Tichi (husband Dennis), Roxanne Roten (partner Scott).

A mass will be held in his honor on Thursday, April 16th at 2 pm at Holy Family Church (9622 20th Ave. SW) followed by a graveside burial at Forest Lawn (6701 30th Ave. SW) with a reception to follow, also at Forest Lawn.

In honor of Jack and his love for pigs, please consider a donation to a place that meant a lot to him – Pigs Peace Sanctuary.

(WSB publishes West Seattle obituaries by request, free of charge. Please e-mail the text, and a photo if available, to editor@westseattleblog.com)

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Memorial this Saturday for Michael R. Shomaker, 1958-2015 http://westseattleblog.com/2015/04/memorial-this-saturday-for-michael-r-shomaker-1958-2015/ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/04/memorial-this-saturday-for-michael-r-shomaker-1958-2015/#comments Thu, 02 Apr 2015 03:15:57 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=305878 Services are planned this Saturday (April 4th) for Michael R. Shomaker. Here’s the remembrance his family is sharing:

Michael Robert Shomaker
January 25, 1958 ~ March 28, 2015

Beloved husband of Michelle, son of Bob and Myrna Shomaker, father of Kyle, Cody, and Sophie Shomaker, brother of Beth Torgeson (Ron) and David Shomaker (Kathy), passed away after a valiant battle with myelofibrosis (blood cancer). Eagle Scout, Sea Scout, Control Systems Engineer, smart, funny, very caring, talented up the kazoo.

There was nothing he couldn’t fix or make better.

Services Saturday 4/4 at Forest Lawn Funeral Home, West Seattle. Viewing 12:00 pm, Chapel Service 1:00 pm, graveside following.

(WSB publishes West Seattle obituaries by request, free of charge. Please e-mail the text, and a photo if available, to editor@westseattleblog.com)

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Memorial for Don Smathers this Wednesday in The Junction http://westseattleblog.com/2015/03/memorial-for-don-smathers-this-wednesday-in-the-junction/ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/03/memorial-for-don-smathers-this-wednesday-in-the-junction/#comments Mon, 30 Mar 2015 16:34:14 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=305562 We promised to let you know when we heard about memorial plans for Don Smathers, whose death at age 65 was reported here one week ago. We now know the gathering will be at 5 pm this Wednesday (April 1st) at Junction Plaza Park.

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Congratulations to new West Seattle Eagle Scouts Jacob Carney, Spencer Gjording, John Roach http://westseattleblog.com/2015/03/congratulations-to-new-west-seattle-eagle-scouts-jacob-carney-spencer-gjording-john-roach/ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/03/congratulations-to-new-west-seattle-eagle-scouts-jacob-carney-spencer-gjording-john-roach/#comments Mon, 30 Mar 2015 03:09:02 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=305516

Thanks to Julie Nugent-Carney for the photo and report:

On Saturday, March 21st, Troop 282 recognized Jacob Carney, John Roach, and Spencer Gjording for achieving the Boy Scouts of America’s highest award during their Eagle Court of Honor ceremony at Camp Long. Guest Speaker Joe McDermott, King County Councilmember, acknowledged their achievement and recalled his own experiences as a Boy Scout. Dow Constantine, King County Executive (and Eagle Scout), sent a congratulatory video message to the boys that was shown at the ceremony.

In addition to meeting all the requirements to achieve the Eagle Rank, the three young men led local community projects including revitalizing the community garden at Longfellow Creek near Sealth High School, restoring 150 feet of trail at Camp Schoenwald in Burien, and constructing raised garden beds for the Seattle Nativity School which was founded to help low-income, at-risk children prepare for college.

Julie shared this report on Jacob’s project (Longfellow Creek) last May.

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FOUND: Teenager no longer missing http://westseattleblog.com/2015/03/missing-teenager-have-you-seen-elvis/ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/03/missing-teenager-have-you-seen-elvis/#comments Sat, 28 Mar 2015 00:15:20 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=305299 SATURDAY UPDATE: Elvis was found at a friend’s home. Thanks for being on the lookout.

EARLIER:

Elvis Salvador Jiminez is 16 years old and his family hopes you will be on the lookout for him.

They describe him as “very short” – 4’11″ – with black hair, brown eyes, lots of acne, “known to be around White Center, South Park, Beacon Hill, last seen around Highland Park.” They say he has been missing for more than 24 hours and have reported him to police as a missing person, so if you have seen him, please call 911.

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UPDATE: Amanda Knox’s conviction overturned by Italian court http://westseattleblog.com/2015/03/amanda-knoxs-conviction-overturned-by-italian-court/ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/03/amanda-knoxs-conviction-overturned-by-italian-court/#comments Fri, 27 Mar 2015 21:47:01 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=305283 2:47 PM: The Associated Press reports that the much-awaited verdict is finally in from Italy, and that the murder conviction of Amanda Knox, who grew up in West Seattle, has been overturned. We’re told paparazzi have been staked out in Arbor Heights, where much of her family lives, so you may see unusual media-type activity in the hours ahead. (Photo added – some of the photo/video turnout we saw there around 3:30 pm)

More to come.

3:04 PM: The British newspaper The Guardian is live-chronicling the verdict’s aftermath on both sides of the Atlantic and says Knox supporters are celebrating at Salty’s on Alki (WSB sponsor), where, their reporter writes, “When news of the verdict broke, the sound of fireworks briefly echoed triumphantly over the water.” Knox has remained stateside during this legal proceeding; The Guardian says her lawyer told her about the decision, and she told him she was “very happy.” The decision also exonerated her former boyfriend Raffaele Sollecito in the 2007 Perugia, Italy, killing of Knox’s then-roommate Meredith Kercher.

4:46 PM: The Guardian’s ongoing live chronicle includes a statement from Knox, including: “I am tremendously relieved and grateful for the decision of the Supreme Court of Italy. The knowledge of my innocence has given me strength in the darkest times of this ordeal. And throughout this ordeal, I have received invaluable support from family, friends, and strangers. To them, I say: Thank you from the bottom of my heart. Your kindness has sustained me. I only wish that I could thank each and every one of you in person.” In a separate statement, her family says they are “thrilled” and “grateful” and “want to express our profound gratitude to all of those who have supported Amanda and our family.”

8:37 PM: Just before 8 pm, Knox made a short statement to the crews who had been staked out outside the Arbor Heights house. KING5.com has the video up.

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Good luck to all in the State Geographic Bee today, including one more West Seattle competitor, Devin Graves http://westseattleblog.com/2015/03/good-luck-to-all-in-the-state-geographic-bee-today-including-one-more-west-seattle-competitor-devin-graves/ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/03/good-luck-to-all-in-the-state-geographic-bee-today-including-one-more-west-seattle-competitor-devin-graves/#comments Fri, 27 Mar 2015 17:29:05 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=305244 The Washington State Geographic Bee is just getting under way at Pacific Lutheran University in Tacoma. We’ve already featured three West Seattle competitors – and just learned about one more. At right, Devin Graves of Explorer West Middle School (WSB sponsor) was crowned EWMS champion and then, as did the other competitors in Tacoma today, scored high enough on a written exam to make the state Bee. It’s the third consecutive year that EWMS has been represented in the statewide competition. Good luck to Devin, and also to Jack Crowley from Madison Middle School (featured here March 13) and Aiden Houlette from Schmitz Park Elementary and Jean-Pierre Dufour from Westside School (WSB sponsor), both featured here Tuesday. We hope to know by late afternoon who’s advancing to the national Bee in Washington, D.C., in May!

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West Seattle Veteran Center reopening in The Triangle http://westseattleblog.com/2015/03/west-seattle-veteran-center-reopening-in-the-triangle/ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/03/west-seattle-veteran-center-reopening-in-the-triangle/#comments Fri, 27 Mar 2015 16:27:43 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=305241 Just announced by American Legion Post 160 Commander Keith Hughes:

The West Seattle Veteran Center, an outreach of American Legion and American Legion Auxiliary Post 160, will reopen on Monday, March 30th.

The Center is located in the American Legion Hall at 3618 SW Alaska. Hours of operation will be:

Mondays 9 am-4 pm
Wednesdays/Thursdays 2 pm-8 pm
Fridays 9 am-4 pm
Closed Tuesdays/weekends

The West Seattle Veteran Center is an all-volunteer operation, and is here to serve all Veterans and their families, regardless of what branch of service or what time period they served.

If you are a Veteran living in the Southwest Corridor, you can help support the Center by joining American Legion Post 160. Membership is only $35 per year.

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