KENNETH REID MONTGOMERY, age 74, longtime resident of Boonville, California, passed away peacefully on Tuesday, March 27th, at Ukiah Valley Medical Center. An avid ecologist and native plant expert, Ken was proprietor of Anderson Valley Nursery for over forty years. He was active in his community as a teacher and musician who loved to share his interests and experiences with others. He is survived by his beloved wife, Susan Bridge-Mount, his daughters, Lisa Baumgardner and Kathleen Montgomery, three grandchildren, and his brother, Stephen Montgomery. The family requests that donations be made in Ken’s name to The Cancer Resource Center.
BACK IN 2014, Tom Melcher wrote about Ken for the ava. His story can be found at: theava.com/archives/37281
THE ANDERSON VALLEY is less like the Anderson Valley we’ve known for so many years, as Beryl Thommason, Willis Tucker and Ken Montgomery leave us behind, each of them sorely missed. Beryl was always merry and bright. She managed to convert a trip to her Boonville market into a real occasion with her boundless good feeling, often expressed in a joke or a request for one of yours. Willis was always too modest to sit still for an interview, said he “wasn’t interesting,” but the stories he told me when I saw him at the post office always made me yearn for more. Ken Montgomery knew more about local flora and fauna than a hundred of us and, years ago, enlightened me as to the existence of the valley’s micro-climates. To lose the three of them so close together somehow makes their loss more painful.
I’LL ALWAYS REMEMBER talking with Willis Tucker and Jerry Kaufman at the Boonville Post Office. Willis had been a Seabee attached to the Marines in the South Pacific. Jerry was an Army private who described his experience in New Guinea this way: “I was doin’ mill work in Arkansas, and next thing I knew I was on a boat for a long time out of San Francisco, and when I got off the boat they was a’droppin’ bombs on me. I didn’t even know where I was!” And the two old men laughed, although that experience when they’d been so young was no laughing matter.
SARA FOWLER, local realtor and pioneer resident of Rancho Navarro, has retired. Rightly known for her honest dealing as a sales person as well as her service as a board member for various Anderson Valley public service organizations has taken down her real estate shingle effective April 1st. Sara adds, “No foolin’. I want to enjoy more of life before it is too late….”
IN OTHER PERSONNEL NEWS, the man at the Boonville Transfer Station, Mike Mannix has recently enjoyed a visit from his son Nathan, a veterinarian who has been practicing in western Australia. Nathan was through the Anderson Valley recently with his wife Kristin and their two children on the way to Rochester, Minnesota where they are relocating. Nathan is a graduate of the Royal College of Veterinary Medicine in London.
ROLLOVER REPORTED IN NAVARRO OFF HWY 128 across from the Navarro Store. According to MendocinoSportsPlus based on scanner traffic, at 4:02 pm, a first responder said there were “two patients with moderate injuries.” Two ground ambulances, as well as CalFire and the AV Fire Department were on the scene and air ambulance CalStar 4 was also dispatched. At 4:08 pm, CalStar 4 said they were two minutes from the landing zone. CHP inquired if the driver had been drinking. The first responders said the answer was “unknown.” CalStar 4 transported a patient from the landing zone @ 4:40 pm. Witnesses at the scene said the car was driven by a man with two older women passengers who were the “two patients with moderate injuries.”
DAVE EVANS, who sometimes thinks his Navarro Store exists in a kind of vehicular combat zone, and with good cause since there are so many accidents on the big, round curve in the road outside his front door, said that this one wasn’t as serious as many he’s seen, but it was bad enough.
BOONVILLE WATER & SEWER SYSTEM UPDATE. Jack Locey, the Sonoma County Drinking Water engineer who’s working on the plans for a Water system in downtown Boonville, spent a half-day on March 13 looking for well testing or well sites. Locey expects to finish the well assessments by the end of May. Several additional areas just outside the downtown Boonville Highway 128 corridor are being considered for addition to the sewer “service area,” including the homes down on Lambert Lane. The AV Health Center has expressed interest in hooking up to the sewer project as well, which would mean extending the service area past the high school. David Coleman, the engineer associated with Locey, will do site visits to the potential additions the week after Easter. The next Boonville Planners meeting to discuss the Sewer Project is tentatively scheduled for April 16th pending date confirmation by Mr. Coleman.
IN OTHER WASTEWATER NEWS, we are encouraged to hear that the Lions Club, Sueno Latino, the Community Services District and the Health Center are gearing up to install a porta-potty at the Community Park across from the airport in the Health Center parking lot. Apparently the Lions Club is planning to front the money for a used porta-potty and the CSD will pick up the periodic cleaning tab. Next up, a much harder nut to plumb: a facility of some kind in downtown Boonville. Finding a place for it, particularly in the Caltrans right of way will be difficult. Existing downtown facilities such as the fairgrounds and the Firehouse present additional problems such as hours of operation, maintenance, location, etc. so no specific proposal is on the horizon.
THE CHP REPORTED (Friday) a "passenger vehicle fire at the Anderson Valley Elementary School, in the lower field about noon today.” Superintendent Hutchins promptly filled in the details: “A school van used by maintenance caught fire. The cause is under investigation. It is suspected to be an electrical malfunction in the vehicle. No students were on site as the school is on spring break. the irony is that maintenance was working on the school's fire suppression system at the time.”
HEY FAIR FANS IN MENDOCINO COUNTY. It’s time to start thinking about participating in the County Fair Parade in Boonville on Sunday September 16 this year. If you have a group of friends or just one person, it all adds to the fun!
There are lots of categories to enter in the parade and you can win prize money, trophies and ribbons for some of them. I know a lot of you out there have always wanted to strut your stuff through town or show off that fabulous float you have been thinking about making for years, or just advertise your business and let people know you are here.
The staging area is at the high school parking lot where they give you a number and the parade starts at 12 noon. From there you head to Highway 128 to the first review area in front of the fairgrounds and then to the second one at the grandstands, and if you make it to the gate they’ll stamp your hand for a free day at the fair so everybody is a winner!
If you haven’t been in the parade before, you can pick up entry forms a month before the county fair starts. They are due a few days before the fair opens to the public, leaving time for those last-minute procrastinators who always do things at the last minute. So now is the time to start thinking about something wild and off the chain; you can dress up your favorite cow, goat, bird, dog, or giraffe if you’ve got one this year and parade thru town. We are all looking forward to seeing it and your friends and family in Boonville this year! (The Fair Boosters)
NEARLY NINE INCHES of rain fell on Yorkville during March, continuing this year's peculiar pattern of alternating dry and wet months. Totaling less than 28 inches thus far, we're hoping for more late season rainfall before summer sets in.
CAPTAIN RAINBOW ADDS: This may be the only opportunity in Anderson Valley before the primary election in June to meet and ask questions of all 5 candidates for 5th District Supervisor. Most of the pre-set questions emphasize, though are not limited to, issues in Anderson Valley. Bring your own questions, let's get past the platitudes and really find out where these guys stand and what ideas they have.
“HELLO, I am looking for a room rental or cottage rental for 2 nights - May 18 and 19, I want to be within a reasonable distance to 128. This is for one quiet, responsible person. Please email: firstname.lastname@example.org”
WE FIELD lottsa calls like the above, so many I’m tempted to offer my room when I’m not here weekends. I’d certainly change the sheets, put a vase of flowers on the night stand, maybe even tuck a bottle of Al Green’s 100-point Pinot under the pillow. Bathroom a stutter step from the bedroom, boffo art. Fifty bucks? Two nights? Beyond reasonable!
JUST SAYIN,' watching a bunch of little kids racing around in hyper-searches for gobs of sugar in the form of so-called Easter eggs, I found myself yearning for Filipinos nailed to commemorative crosses as they're dragged through dusty, equatorial streets. Of course I'm not suggesting these bloody Christ on the Cross rituals for our fine, fat population, but I wouldn't mind seeing sugar industry execs propelled naked and bleeding before a mob of murderous vegans.