West Seattle, Washington
Two weeks ago today, a West Seattle woman was robbed at gunpoint at the BECU ATM next to the Mobil gas station in Morgan Junction. Tonight, we are sharing her open letter of gratitude to those who helped her afterward:
I write to express my thanks to all of you who helped out a couple weeks ago.
As you may have read about in the WSB post, I was robbed at gunpoint at the ATM on a bright and sunny Sunday morning (September 10). The incident took place so quickly that I could hardly believe it happened, though I’m pretty sure I immediately went into shock. Afterward, I remember running into the gas station area asking for help, that I’d just been robbed. Apparently, I was also repeating the license plate number of the getaway car over and over, though I didn’t realize I was doing that out loud!
I am so very grateful for all of you that helped out in that moment, with your time and energy, kindness and compassion. I’d sometimes wondered how people could be helped out in an incident and afterward not know the names of the people who had helped them. And now, well, I understand! I have no idea what any of your names are. I don’t know where you live, or what you do.
What I DO know is this. I remember a man in a reddish button-up shirt who walked over to me, asked if I wanted a hug (I did), asked if my car was still there (it was), asked if I wanted to sit down, and walked me over to sit down in my car while encouraging me to breathe. I remember him saying that he didn’t have his phone that day, or he’d loan it to me to call home (I did not yet realize that I still HAD my phone in the car). I also remember three different people who all had their phones out talking to 911 so quickly after I asked for help. I’m not sure if they were the same ones, but there were also multiple people who came and checked in on me and expressed concern before they headed out. There was a woman across the street who noticed “an odd number of people really close to the ATM,” and took a picture of the getaway car as it peeled out and drove away. She stuck by me the whole rest of the time, passed her phone to me to talk to 911 dispatch, and just made sure I was okay through the whole conversation with police and until my family came. Her consistent presence and empathy made all of it much easier.
The police also showed up quickly, and the officer who talked with me was calm and supportive the whole time. I noticed in the background all the other police officers buzzing around and talking with all of you who were in the gas station or parking lot when it happened.
I hope I thought to say thank you in the moment, but I’m honestly not sure if I did. So here it is again. Thank you so very much to all of you who supported me right after the robbery. It was such a scary experience, but then followed immediately with kindness. Though all of you were strangers, I felt well taken care of until my family arrived. I’m holding on to that gratefulness as I process all of the other feelings that come up.
I appreciate you!
If you have any tips in the case, the police incident # is 23-262270.
Tuesday night is the final meeting in Seattle Public Schools‘ series of community conversations about defining “well-resourced schools” – considered to be a prelude to a possible recommendation of closing/consolidating some schools. That meeting will be held online at 5:30 pm. Superintendent Dr. Brent Jones is expected to deliver his recommendation in November. Also as a prelude, the School Board met this past Wednesday for what was described as a “budget work session,” though few numbers were presented. See the meeting documents here; the video is below:
“We’re back at it again,” Dr. Jones declared, noting that the district had solved a $131 million budget gap for this year, in part with $81 million in non-recurring funding, and now face a “$105 million challenge.” Deputy superintendent Dr. Art Jarvis noted, “Small schools no longer match the state (funding) model.” Our area’s school board director Leslie Harris observed that “closures and consolidations are coming .. this is coming at us like a tsunami.” Though district administrators promised to keep advocating for better state funding, chief of staff Bev Redmond observed, “Our answer has to come from within.” The bulk of the discussion was geared toward process, including this timeline:
That includes the date for Dr. Jones’s recommendation – November 15th.
Back to this Tuesday’s 5:30 pm online community meeting: As of Wednesday’s board session, Redmond said more than 300 people had registered to attend; the link is here. And if you haven’t yet answered the survey that’s been circulating throughout this process – you have until Friday (September 29) – find it here. (If you missed the Southwest region in-person meeting last month, our coverage is here.)
Two reader reports today:
MAILBOX PROWLER: Sent by Kevin:
This happened at 4:40 AM this morning, I live (in the 3800 block of) 34th Ave. SW. It looks like she sees the camera, and puts the hoodie over her head before she reaches in to see if there’s any mail. It also looks like she has other packages from pick-ups earlier. Looks like there’s someone in the background across the street, like a partner. I’m waiting on my Amazon order for my new locked mailbox.
DUMPED STOLEN PACKAGE, MAIL: Via text:
Stolen mail and package found in compost bin near Westwood, from 11th Ave. SW, initials of package are S.G.
If that might be you, let us know and we’ll connect you.
Thanks for the texted tip! The aircraft carrier USS Nimitz (CVN-68) is in view from West Seattle, southbound, six weeks after it headed out. MarineTraffic.com says it’s been headed home to Bremerton since leaving San Diego six days ago.
11:33 AM: If you’re not already in The Junction, this is the epicenter of West Seattle fun on autumn’s first Sunday – the Fall Festival is on, in the street on California SW south of Alaska.
Music (The Potholes, above) and games started at 11 – including the cornhole tournament:
(added) How about giant checkers?
Starting at noon, you can buy chili tastes and vote on your favorite. Noon is also when the Seattle Thrillers are scheduled to dance, and two sets of pie-eating competitors will face off, kids and adults. This is all on until 2 pm (while the Farmers’ Market continues in its usual area north of Alaska).
12:32 PM: Go get your chili while it lasts, right in front of KeyBank as usual:
(Competitors: Admiral Pub, Brookdale, Camp West, Elliott Bay Brewing, Husky Deli, Margie’s Cafe, Pecos Pit BBQ – voting results announced at festival’s end.)
2:12 PM: Congratulations to Husky Deli, which won the chili-cookoff vote, with Margie’s Café (from the Senior Center) coming in second. (~300 flights of chili were purchased for $10 each – proceeds help the West Seattle Junction Association, a nonprofit, cover festival costs.)
10:47 AM: Tomorrow night – Monday, September 25 – we’re presenting your next chance to see the candidates in two major races that’ll be decided in the general election. Voting starts in mid-October, so if you haven’t decided yet, it’s a good time to see the contenders side by side. At 6:30 pm, we’ll talk with County Council District 8 (West Seattle, White Center, Vashon/Maury Islands, Burien) candidates Teresa Mosqueda (current Seattle City Council citywide rep) and Sofia Aragon (current Burien Mayor). After a short break at 7, City Council District 1 (West Seattle, South Park, Georgetown, part of south downtown) candidates Rob Saka and Maren Costa (neither of whom has previously held elected office) are in the spotlight. This is at the Senior Center of West Seattle in The Junction (4217 SW Oregon), and you are welcome to be there in person. We’re planning questions in advance, so if there’s something you’d like us to ask, please email it by tonight – firstname.lastname@example.org – thank you!
7:06 PM: We just got word that one of the COUNTY Council candidates will be unable to attend in person, due to illness, so the first part of the night will have to be postponed to a TBA date. However, the CITY Council candidates are still a go – we’ll start their forum at 7 pm Monday.
Extra middle-of-the-street fun in The Junction today – that tops our highlight list:
FALL FESTIVAL: For the first time, The Junction’s big fall celebration has become a two-part festival – today, 11 am-2 pm, it’s part one, the Fall Festival, with an extra block closed to traffic (see Metro advisories here) so all this can happen on California south of Alaska:
The Potholes play at 11, The Everlovers at 1 (and between them, “Thriller” dancers at noon). Most of this is free but bring $ for the chili (noon; competitors this year are Admiral Pub, Brookdale, Camp West, Elliott Bay Brewing, Husky Deli, Margie’s Cafe, NW Texas BBQ, Pecos Pit BBQ, and The Westy). Pies for the competition (noon; registration is closed) are provided as always by A La Mode Pies.
WEST SEATTLE FARMERS’ MARKET: Meantime, 10 am-2 pm, the market is open as usual between SW Alaska and SW Oregon on California, offering fruit and vegetables as well as flowers, cheese, fish, meat, baked goods, condiments, fresh-cooked food, beverages (from kombucha to beer/wine), nuts, more. Here’s today’s vendor list.
Here’s what else is happening in West Seattle today/tonight:
WESTIES RUN CLUB: Now they’re running on Sunday mornings too – meet at 9 am at Dough Joy Donuts (4310 SW Oregon).
BUSINESS MOVING SALE: West Seattle Wellness is moving from Westwood Village to The Junction and selling some items at its WWV location today – wall art, filing cabinets, wardrobes, massage tables, and a printer. 10 am-3 pm. (2600 SW Barton, Suite A-24, above NK Nails)
DOUGH JOY AT OUNCES: Another 10 am-2 pm Dough Joy Donuts popup at Ounces (3809 Delridge Way SW).
CLASSIC NOVELS (AND MOVIES) BOOK CLUB: Monthly gathering at C & P Coffee Company (5612 California SW), 3 pm; see our calendar listing for the topic!
COFFEEHOUSE MUSIC: Sean Morse performs 3-5 pm at C & P Coffee Company (5612 California SW; WSB sponsor). No cover.
Something for our calendar – one-time or recurring? Email us the info – email@example.com – thank you!