West Seattle, Washington
Three ongoing concerns are in our toplines from Tuesday night’s Fauntleroy Community Association board meeting:
Make sure everything you need to charge is charged by tomorrow afternoon – the National Weather Service has a “wind advisory” alert for 4 pm Thursday through 4 pm Friday. Right now, that means winds are likely out of the south, 20-35 mph sustained, gusts up to 45 mph. It’s going to be wet, too, with the NWS saying up to two inches of rain is likely between Thursday and Saturday in the lowlands.
A stirring Veterans Day ceremony this afternoon at Providence Mount St. Vincent in West Seattle: A “pinning ceremony” for more than two dozen veterans who live at The Mount. They were recognized, one last time, for their service in World War II, Korea, and Vietnam, and got the chance to tell their stories. Among them, 92-year-old Donald Hill, in our photo below with son Dave, who introduced him:
According to a Mount spokesperson, Hill “decoded Nazi messages off the cliffs of Dover and landed on Utah Beach in Normandy on D-Day shortly after the first troops landed. Hill continued to decode messages as he and his fellow soldiers made their way through France, Belgium and Germany.” He was featured in this Seattle Times story earlier this week. This afternoon’s ceremony was in the chapel at The Mount; elsewhere in the building, a bulletin board is honoring those who have served:
The “We Honor Veterans” program is part of Providence Hospice of Seattle, which is caring for some of the veterans who participated in today’s ceremony – find out more about the program, and the veterans, here.
5:16 PM: Seattle Fire is headed for the 6500 block of 31st SW in High Point [map] for a possible house fire.
5:19 PM: Fire units on scene confirm it’s a problem in the kitchen, not a fire, so most of the response is being canceled.
(John & Frances Smersh @ Click’s 11th anniversary celebration. Photo by Eliott Peacock)
The proprietors of Click! Design That Fits, longtime independent West Seattle business (and longtime WSB sponsor), have just gone public with some personal news, and friends and family have at the same time come up with a way to support them.
Here’s what’s happening: Frances Smersh, who has run Click! with husband John Smersh for 11 years, has been diagnosed with Early Onset Alzheimer’s. Frances is only 48.
As the e-mail to Click!’s mailing list today – headed “Frances, John, and Alzheimer’s” – explains, “While the timeline is uncertain, Early Onset Alzheimer’s can move quickly, and what we do know is that the next twelve months will be the best Frances and John can expect to have together. Essentially, this next year will be their best year.” That’s what Frances’s doctor told them this fall, a few months after the initial diagnosis. Alzheimer’s remains an incurable disease, no matter what the patient’s age.
The store will stay in business. But Frances and John hope to spend some extra time together during that “best year.” John says, “I intend to continue working, but hopefully in a capacity that allows me to keep myself healthy and able to be her primary caregiver. Frances has already become less involved in the business, meaning I’ve had to pick up more, when I really feel like we should be handing responsibility off to a manager so that we can have time together, while it lasts. I know there will be a time when I don’t have her any more …”
So, as the announcement adds, “Friends and family have started a fundraiser to raise money to help with medical costs and to allow them to step away from Click! for a while, enjoy their life, and figure out what’s next.” That page is on youcaring.com.
Frances is an artist whose work has long been part of the Click! offerings, including jewelry, and she also paints – she is this month’s highlighted artist and will be showing and selling her newest work during tomorrow night’s West Seattle Art Walk, 6-9 pm. The monthly Art Walk has always been a meaningful event for Click! – John has long led the committee that organizes it, part of their community involvement beyond the all-encompassing work of running an independent local business that supports local artists and other creators.
P.S. If you are interested in helping, but not online, please send postal mail to John at the store, 4540 California SW, Seattle 98116.
We start this West Seattle Crime Watch roundup with an investigation under way right now:
BROKEN WINDOWS AT JUNCTION BANK: Thanks to the person who texted us about this. Though the bank is closed for the Veterans Day holiday, there’s a lot of activity at the West Seattle Junction Wells Fargo right now because of apparent vandalism.
Windows were broken on the south side of the bank. No word yet exactly when it happened, but police were called to the branch this afternoon, and WF employees are there now as well as a crew to fix the window. They are trying to figure out what the windows were broken with, but police say they do not believe it was gunfire.
MAIL THEFT, REPORT #1: From a Gatewood resident: “Just wanted to email you about our locked mailbox being broken into and our mail stolen. We’re on the 4000 block of SW Myrtle St., and we’ve already reported it to the police and the Postal Inspector.” That came in Tuesday afternoon, as did the next note from a few miles south:
MAIL THEFT, REPORT #2: From an Arbor Heights resident: “Just found a bunch of mail strewn along SW 102nd St., which I returned to the proper address.”
Thanks to the readers who have texted about an incident blocking the intersection at 20th and Henderson. It was listed as a medic response on the Seattle Fire 911 log; SFD tells us it’s a crash involving a bicycle rider. We’re headed to the scene to try to find out more.
Just went through The Junction and the closed (“FYI”) sign is off the door at Chipotle Mexican Grill in The Junction, one day after the chain said it was reopening its 43 Washington and Oregon restaurants. The chain voluntarily closed them after a rash of E. coli illnesses; most, including the two-month-old Chipotle here, were closed for 11 full days, going back to Halloween. The 30 people who got sick in this state reported eating at five Chipotles, including two in Seattle, but the West Seattle store was not among them. So far, tests still haven’t traced where the bacteria came from. Here’s all the state info about the outbreak; here’s all the info from Chipotle.
(Recent Terminal 5 photo by Long Bach Nguyen, showing two ships from the Shell drilling fleet, Tor Viking and Harvey Explorer)
The Port of Seattle‘s Terminal 5 hasn’t been entirely idle since its official closure in July of last year, but the Shell ships are much smaller than what the port expects to see after its planned “modernization” program.
The original modernization plan did not include a full environmental-impact review, you might recall, but area residents pushed for one, and the port finally announced last month that it’s going to get one done because of the scale of the potential tenants it’s talking with.
Here’s where you come in: Tomorrow night, the port invites you to a meeting to focus on the scope of the environmental-impact review. And those concerned West Seattleites are hoping to have your help in shaping it.
One of them, Jim Wojciechowski, was at last night’s Admiral Neighborhood Association meeting to make one more pitch for participation.
“Public comment is what’s going to keep the momentum going” for a project responsive to West Seattleites’ concerns, he said. Neighbors are trying to “mitigate the damages,” said Wojciechowski – noise, traffic, and air pollution are top issues. So this is the time when the port will “scope” to see what the Environmental Impact Statement should include.
Wojciechowski stressed that “it’s the public input that’s going to determine” what happens as the port uses a consultant to prepare the EIS. “They’re bringing in big ships … and they’ll be bringing in smaller ships too. They’re sitting there running their engines while they’re there for a few days,” and that’s why neighbors are “pushing for shore power.” Every major port on the West Coast is already implementing or planning for shore power, according to Wojciechowski.
He also pointed out that since Terminal 5 closed more than a year ago, it’s generating no truck traffic right now, and “everyone’s complacent.” Meantime, the potential for train “quiet zones” is something that appeals to neighbors – but it would be costly. Finally, he reminded attendees that the port is holding an “online open house” right now. As ANA president David Whiting reiterated, it’s collecting comments on what the EIS should study – what potential impacts the project might have – not comments on whether or not the modernization project should happen.
Before the meeting, we had asked port spokesperson Peter McGraw about the format of Thursday night’s meeting (5:30 pm-8:30 pm at The Hall at Fauntleroy, 9131 California SW). Here’s what he provided:
Open House with stations: 5:30 – 6:00 pm
Presentation: 6:00 – 6:30 pm
Q&A (outside of comments) 6:30 – 6:45 pm
Public Comment: 6:45 – 8:00 pm – could go later if needed
Resume Open House: 8:00 – 8:30 pm
Again, the port’s official information on the process, including tomorrow night’s meeting, is here.
P.S. Separate from the official port process, T-5 neighbors also have a new online petition.
P.P.S. Our second report on the ANA meeting, on an unrelated but even more impassioned topic, is still in the works.
(The Olympics’ distinctive peaks The Brothers, photographed this morning by Chris Frankovich)
Schools, libraries, and most park facilities are closed for Veterans Day; here’s what’s going on otherwise:
FLAG RETIREMENT CEREMONY: 3 pm on Alki, and you’re invited. From Boy Scout Troop 375 Scoutmaster Mark Ufkes:
Boy Scout Troop 375, including scouts from Burien, West Seattle, and White Center will be holding a Flag Retirement Ceremony at 3 pm. Veterans and their families are invited and will be recognized and thanked for their service to our country during the ceremony. Scouts will respectfully retire an American flag over a beach cedar fire while Taps is played. The public is invited. The location is across from Duke’s Chowder House. If guests have old American flags that need to be retired, the troop will collect them at the event for future retirement ceremonies.
(57th SW & Alki SW)
34TH DISTRICT DEMOCRATS: 7 pm at The Hall at Fauntleroy, the 34th DDs’ monthly meeting will include an election recap, featuring winning candidates. So what about almost-deadlocked City Council District 1? The organization was waiting to hear from the candidates last time we checked. Also planned: A legislative update, and presidential-caucus preview. See the full agenda here. (9131 California SW)
ARTSWEST PERFORMANCE TO BENEFIT RAMON ASPEITIA: Tonight’s 7:30 pm performance of “My Mañana Comes” at ArtsWest Playhouse will benefit Ramon Aspeitia, the West Seattle restaurant worker attacked in White Center and fighting to regain his health – more info in our calendar listing. (4711 California SW)
And this note:
LAST WEEK TO SIGN UP FOR THE Y’S YOUTH BASKETBALL PROGRAM: Next Monday’s the deadline. From the West Seattle YMCA (WSB sponsor):
Our recreational basketball program is designed for youngsters to have fun while learning sportsmanship, basketball rules and skills. Games are played with age-appropriate equipment including lower hoops for the younger kids. Choose from leagues: Pre-K Coed (At least 4 years old), Kindergarten Coed, 1st & 2nd Grade Coed, 3rd & 4th Grade Boys or 3rd & 4th Grade Girls.
Practices begin the week of November 30th. Games begin the weekend of January 9th. There are several locations to choose from for practice. Games will be played at the West Seattle YMCA, Fauntleroy YMCA & local schools. The fees are $85 for Facility Members or $132 for Community Participants
Register now until November 16th – online by going here, or in person at Member Services. Questions? Contact Harley Wells-Schultz, Sports Director at firstname.lastname@example.org or 206 937 1000
Thanks to Kristin for the update on West Seattle High School golfers’ postseason results. She sent the photo and report on two golfers headed to state competition:
WSHS Wildcats Bailey Fuentes and Zach Gibson finished 3rd and 10th at the KingCo/Metro District Tournament to move on to the 3A Boys State Golf Tournament at The Creek at Qualchan Golf Course in Spokane on May 24 and 25, 2016. Pictured with Coach Velko Vitalich are the team members who competed in the district tournament. From left, Bailey, Alex Nguyen, Tony Flores, Zach.
Congratulations to the Seattle Lutheran High School athletes who have received All-League honors. The school’s announcement:
Seattle Lutheran High School has ten students who were named to SeaTac 1B League All-League teams.
The Saints’ football coach, Anthony Stordahl, was voted almost unanimously as the Coach of the Year for the 1B league. (There was one vote for another coach which came from, you guessed it, Coach Stordahl!) We are proud of our coach and assistant coaches, who put in many hours of work with our football team. Thank you, coaches!
Football – 1st Team Offense: Isaiah Dowding-Albrecht ‘17 Quarterback; Nick Lidstrom ‘16 Offensive Line; Brandon Lulow ‘16 Running Back; JJ Young ‘17 Running Back
Football 1st Team Defense: Jacob Fay ‘16 Defensive Line,
Football 2nd Team: Eric Bauman ‘16 Defensive Line
Volleyball: Abbi Sanders ‘16
Girls Soccer – 1st Team: Taylor Stordahl ‘16
Girls Soccer – 2nd Team: Macey Crooks ‘16 and Emma Figgins ‘17
P.S. If you missed it in the update to our story on SLHS’s postseason football game last Saturday, the team’s state-tournament play begins this Friday night (November 13th) on the road at Naselle in southwest Washington, 7 pm.
(Six WS-relevant views; more cams on the WSB Traffic page)
Good morning! Some changes for the holiday:
NIGHTTIME TRAFFIC ALERT: The project team for The Whittaker (Fauntleroy/Alaska/40th/Edmunds) has forwarded this alert:
We will be working on the Edmunds Street Crossing along Fauntleroy Way starting this Thursday night. During the night time work on Edmunds, 40th to Fauntleroy will be closed. Once the time is up for each night, then it will be plated for traffic during the day. This work is anticipated to take about 1 week and should be completed by Friday 11/20 next week weather permitting. There will likely be some additional restoration to do after next Friday, but that would be on the sidewalks, and not in the street.