SEIU scandals: time to limit union politics

While California political observers focused on an unfolding gubernatorial recall election during the spring and summer, another major state election was taking place. Members of the powerful Service Employees International Union (SEIU) Local 1000 were voting for a new president.

This particular election had received more attention than usual because the winning candidate, Richard Louis Brown, campaigned on an unusual platform. “Take the labor organization out of politics completely,” the Sacramento Bee explained.

The union not only is the largest representative of state-government workers, but provides electoral muscle for the Democratic Party. The SEIU chapter donated $1 million to oppose the recall and its Political Action Committees spent (in cash and other contributions) $17 million over the past decade, according to the Bee report.

Brown made the sensible argument that instead of promoting unrelated progressive political priorities (e.g., raising the minimum wage and reducing immigration restrictions), the union could best serve its members by focusing on the traditional aspects of unions, such as improving bargaining agreements. Such arguments were music to our ears.

Despite his grassroots support, other union leaders weren’t willing to put up with this radical change in direction. Last week, its board voted to transfer the president’s leadership authority to a hand-picked chairman. Brown’s foes also pointed to harassment and wrongful-termination allegations as further justification for their move, per the report.

Brown has fought back by comparing the meeting to a lynching and arguing that the power-stripping vote was illegal. That dispute in a local chapter is not the least of SEIU’s problems. Attorney General Rob Bonta filed tax-fraud, embezzlement and other criminal charges against the executive director of SEIU California (who has resigned, but disputes the allegations) following an investigation by the Fair Political Practices Commission.

The unions clearly need to get their houses in order, but the controversies have wide-ranging political importance given the outsized roles these unions play in California politics. We’re not fans of government unions in general, but it’s about time they stay in their lane – and stick to helping members rather than muscling lawmakers.

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Seal Beach resident who survived breast cancer dies from leukemia

Jennifer Lynn Chow was a fighter until her last breath.

It’s hard to imagine what she endured during the last three years: Breast cancer. A double mastectomy. Reconstructive surgery. Months of chemotherapy and radiation.

And just when she had beaten that cancer, a new one revealed itself: acute myeloid leukemia. Another fight followed, one marked by blood transfusions and more chemotherapy as the Seal Beach resident prepared for a stem cell transplant that might have saved her life.

But the transplant never came.

Through it all, she always remained optimistic and never gave up hope. But her body could only take so much and, at the far-too-young age of 44, she died earlier this month at the City of Hope Hospital in Duarte.

“She fought so hard to stay alive for her family until her last breath,” her husband, LAPD Deputy Chief Blake Chow, said this week. “She was the bravest person I’ve ever known. She was an inspiration for us all in health and sickness.”

Outpourings of condolences have been sent to him, including ones from Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti and Los Angeles City Council members.

“Everybody who knew Jen loved her,” her husband said.

A celebration of life in Chow’s honor is scheduled for 10 a.m. Nov. 3 at Eisenhower Park in Seal Beach.

  • Jennifer Lynn Chow with her husband, Blake Chow. (Courtesy photo)

  • Jennifer Lynn Chow and her husband, Blake Chow, with their children (l-r) Reilly, Noah, Thea and Isaac. (Courtesy photo)

  • Jennifer and Blake Chow with their kids (l-r) Andrew, Thea, Isaac, Noah, Reilly and Nick in January 2019, three months before Jennifer was diagnosed with breast cancer. (Courtesy photo)

  • Blake and Jennifer Lynn Chow with their daughter, Thea in New York in 2019. (Courtesy photo)

  • Jennifer Lynn Chow when she shaved her head in 2019 before her chemotherapy treatments for breast cancer.(Courtesy photo)

  • Jennifer Lynn Chow in her Celebration of Life poster. (Courtesy photo)

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A GoFundMe account has also been set up in her name. Because of her illnesses, Chow was unable to get life insurance, her husband said.

“We are raising funds for her kids’ college funds so they can attend the colleges of their choices,” Chow’s widower said. “Any support for the family would be greatly appreciated.”

In April, Chow’s friend, Long Beach resident Jennifer Davis, partnered with the Be The Match organization to set up a cheek swab drive-thru event to find a stem cell donor for Chow while she was being treated at UCLA Medical Center.

But, in a rare stroke of good fortune, a match was found just before the event. The discovery ended a search that had started earlier among the more than 20 million potential blood stem cell donors listed in the Be The Match’s registry. The cheek swab drive-thru event, in Long Beach, still happened, so Be The Match could continue expanding its registry.

“It’s a miracle,” Chow said at the time, in her typical outgoing manner from her home in Seal Beach.

She transferred to the City of Hope Hospital and had a transplant scheduled for this month.

But an infection delayed that and she died before the transplant could be performed.

Jennifer Chow was born Jennifer Balentine on March 21, 1977, in New Pekin, Indiana, a small town in southeastern Indiana. Her father was a mechanic and her mother owned a restaurant there.

She went to elementary and high school in New Pekin before graduating from Indiana University Southeast in New Albany.

She moved to Southern California in the late 1990s.

Chow was first diagnosed with breast cancer in March 2019 as she was about to celebrate her 42nd birthday.

“I felt something in my breast and decided to see my doctor,” she said in April. “I had a mammogram and it showed I had Stage 3C cancer. It was slow growing. If it had been more aggressive, I wouldn’t be here.”

She had a double mastectomy. Then four months of chemotherapy, 25 radiation treatments and reconstructive surgery. Before the chemotherapy, she shaved her head and wore wigs.

The surgery and treatment, she said, were “brutal but successful.”

That’s when she thought her battle with cancer was over and her life would return to normal.

She married Blake Chow, who has three children from a previous marriage — Andrew, Nick and Thea — on Sept. 27, 2020. She also has three sons from a previous marriage, Reilly, Noah and Isaac Reategui.

Chow let her hair grow back, which can be seen in a happy family photo from last Christmas. But shortly after the new year, on Jan. 8, she got the devastating news: Tests showed she had acute myeloid leukemia and needed more chemotherapy — and a stem cell transplant.

“My head started spinning,” she said in April. “I thought my cancer journey was over. It didn’t seem real.”

That’s when Davis, a friend and business partner in Rhonda and Jennifer Keller Williams Pacific-Estates Realty, organized the swab drive-thru for a transplant donor. Davis and Chow first met in 2013. Davis was also the real estate agent for the Seal Beach house Chow bought in 2017. Davis mentored Chow in real estate and, in July 2020, Chow got her real estate license and did very well, even making a Top 25 sales list in October of that year.

Then came the leukemia diagnosis, which put everything on hold.

In the week before she died — which also marked her and Blake Chow’s first wedding anniversary — Chow talked to Davis and family members in individual meetings at the hospital because of COVID-19 guidelines.

“I saw her last on Sept. 29,” Davis said. “She kept saying, ‘I’m fighting this. I’m not going to give up.’ She was not talking about death. She was optimistic. She talked about hope and the future.”

Blake Chow said his wife, despite remaining positive and optimistic throughout her ordeal, also had times when she was scared of the unknown.

“But she never let that get in the way,” he said, “of what she had to do to survive.”

Besides the chemotherapy, Chow also had to have blood transfusions that took up to six or seven hours.

“She never lost her positive attitude,” Chow’s husband said. “She never said, ‘I’m done.’

“We all were scared,” he added. “I can’t thank enough the City of Hope doctors and staff for their attitude and caring. There’s a reason it’s called the City of Hope. They give patients a reason to hope.”

Shortly before Chow died, on Oct. 4, her husband entered her room for a visit. She was asleep, Blake Chow said, but opened her eyes when he neared.

“I said I loved her,” the widower said. “She asked me about the children and how they were doing. She cared about other people more than she cared about herself. I told her and then she closed her eyes.”

It was the last time the couple were together while Chow was alive.

Besides her husband, Jennifer Lynn Chow is survived by her mother and father, Teena and Randall Balentine; her sister, Stacy Ballentine; and her children and stepchildren, Reilly Reategui, 17; Noah Reategui, 15; Isaac Reategui, 10; Andrew Chow, 28; Nick Chow, 24; and Thea Chow, 17.

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Rancho Alamitos football beats Santiago with wild finish, clinches share of league title


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GARDEN GROVE >> Rancho Alamitos quarterback Isaac Plata found Sal Correa for an 18-yard touchdown pass and the go-ahead points with 42 seconds left to squeak by Santiago 25-22 on Friday night at Garden Grove High.

The Vaqueros (8-1, 4-0) clinched a share of the Garden Grove League championship with the victory in a game that saw four lead changes in the fourth quarter. They can win the league outright by beating Los Amigos next week.

“We have no quit in us,” Rancho Alamitos coach Mike Enright said. “Our kids are resilient. We could’ve folded right there when they got that long touchdown run but we did what we do.”

The long touchdown run was a 72-yard sprint up the middle by Cavaliers running back Art Martinez, which gave Santiago a 22-18 advantage with 2:56 left in the game. That came one play from scrimmage after Vaqueros kicker Angel Diaz nailed a 37-yard field goal to take an 18-16 lead.

“I almost feel like we scored too fast,” Santiago coach Doug Ozsvath said. “Art Martinez broke that one off and I said ‘oh my gosh,’ as I started looking up at that clock.”

Enright felt confident that Plata would lead the Vaqueros downfield for the game-winning score.

“We practice it every day. We’re a no-huddle offense, we don’t go fast every time, but we are a two-minute team,” Enright explained. “We don’t worry about coming from behind because we know we can.”

Plata spread the ball around on the game-winning drive as Anthony Leal (117 yards rushing), Jonathan Nguyen, Matthew Sanchez, Valentino Villa and Correa all got touches on the final possession.

“We use a lot of receivers. We don’t throw to one guy, we’re gonna throw to the open guy,” Enright said.

Plata, a senior, who stepped up to play quarterback after Chris Hurley suffered a season-ending injury, went 14 of 18 passing with 122 yards and two touchdowns, including a 3-yard scoring pass to Sanchez in the second quarter.

The Cavaliers (7-2, 3-1) scored on their opening possession, a 12-play, 64-yard drive capped by Satomai Siofele’s 1-yard run to go up 8-0 after a successful 2-point conversion.

Santiago held a 8-7 lead at halftime but the Vaqueros emphasized their ground game in the second half and Leal was the main force behind the turnaround. Leal ran the ball eight times in an 11-play scoring drive that ended with him scoring on a 1-yard run to give Rancho Alamitos a 15-8 advantage midway through the third quarter.

The Cavaliers answered with Isaac Hernandez’s 8-yard touchdown run early in the fourth quarter to give Santiago a 16-15 lead, the first of four lead changes in the final quarter.

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Austin Overn leads Foothill football past Villa Park in another dramatic Crestview League game


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ORANGE — The Crestview League produced two football games decided by three points in its opening round. The group kept to its dramatic ways Friday but Foothill added a major twist.

Austin Overn scored three touchdowns and threw for a TD to lead the No. 11 Knights to a 35-28 victory against No. 9 Villa Park in a game decided in the closing minutes at El Modena High.

Penn commit Patrick Hawkins sealed the victory with a sack on a fourth-and-4 from the Foothill 5-yard line with 3:33 left in the final quarter, allowing the Knights (8-1, 1-1) to run out the clock.

  • The Foothill High School football team celebrate with their coach Doug Case, center, after defeating Villa Park in a key Crestview League game in Orange on Friday, October 22, 2021. (Photo by Paul Rodriguez, Contributing Photographer)

  • Foothill’s Austin Overn, center, catches a pass between Villa Park cornerback Eddie Rodriguez Jr, left, and free safety Benjie Lewis, right, and is able to hang onto the ball as he falls to the ground in Orange on Friday, October 22, 2021. (Photo by Paul Rodriguez, Contributing Photographer)

  • Villa Park quarterback Nathan Kornely, right, is hit hard and knocked down by Foothill’s Dean Pistone, left, in Orange on Friday, October 22, 2021. Tempers flared after the play with a penalty assessed on Villa Park. (Photo by Paul Rodriguez, Contributing Photographer)

  • Villa Park quarterback Nathan Kornely, second from left, reaches out to shake hands with Foothill guard Reed Fergus (72) before leaving the game with an injured arm late in the fourth quarter in Orange on Friday, October 22, 2021. (Photo by Paul Rodriguez, Contributing Photographer)

  • Villa Park cornerback Eddie Rodriguez Jr, left, is called for pass interference on a pass intended for Foothill’s Austin Overn, right, in Orange on Friday, October 22, 2021. (Photo by Paul Rodriguez, Contributing Photographer)

  • Foothill’s Patrick Hawkins (85) and Austin Overn, right, celebrate with teammates after regaining possession of the ball from Villa Park with a little under four minutes remaining the game in Orange on Friday, October 22, 2021. (Photo by Paul Rodriguez, Contributing Photographer)

  • Villa Park fans get into the spirit of the game against Foothill in Orange on Friday, October 22, 2021. (Photo by Paul Rodriguez, Contributing Photographer)

  • Villa Park quarterback Nathan Kornely, right, scrambles to find a receiver as he his pursued by a Foothill defender in Orange on Friday, October 22, 2021. (Photo by Paul Rodriguez, Contributing Photographer)

  • Villa Park quarterback Nathan Kornely has his forearm immobilized after begin hurt on Villa Park’s last play of the game in Orange on Friday, October 22, 2021. Foothill took possession and ran out the clock to win the game. (Photo by Paul Rodriguez, Contributing Photographer)

  • Foothill’s Austin Overn, center, hits the ground after catching a pass but hangs onto the ball as he is double covered by Villa Park cornerback Eddie Rodriguez Jr, left, and free safety Benjie Lewis, right, in Orange on Friday, October 22, 2021. (Photo by Paul Rodriguez, Contributing Photographer)

  • Foothill’s Austin Overn jogs into the end zone to score a fourth quarter touchdown to put Foothill ahead of Villa Park 34-28 in Orange on Friday, October 22, 2021. (Photo by Paul Rodriguez, Contributing Photographer)

  • Villa Park cheerleaders perform for the crowd during a break in the action against Foothill in Orange on Friday, October 22, 2021. (Photo by Paul Rodriguez, Contributing Photographer)

  • The Villa Park football team run onto the field before the start of the game against Foothill in Orange on Friday, October 22, 2021. (Photo by Paul Rodriguez, Contributing Photographer)

  • Villa Park cornerback Jackson Christie, right, is brought down by Foothill’s Reese Von Hemert, left, in Orange on Friday, October 22, 2021. (Photo by Paul Rodriguez, Contributing Photographer)

  • Foothill’s Matt Little powers his way toward the end zone to score a touchdown against Villa Park in the first quarter in Orange on Friday, October 22, 2021. (Photo by Paul Rodriguez, Contributing Photographer)

  • Villa Park quarterback Nathan Kornely, right, gets the ball over the goal line to score a touchdown against Foothill in the second quarter in Orange on Friday, October 22, 2021. (Photo by Paul Rodriguez, Contributing Photographer)

  • Villa Park quarterback Nathan Kornely, left, confers with coach h Dusan Ancich during the game against Foothill in Orange on Friday, October 22, 2021. (Photo by Paul Rodriguez, Contributing Photographer)

  • Villa Park fans cheer their team during the game against Foothill in Orange on Friday, October 22, 2021. (Photo by Paul Rodriguez, Contributing Photographer)

  • Foothill’s Austin Overn dives into the end zone to score a touchdown against Villa Park in the first quarter in Orange on Friday, October 22, 2021. (Photo by Paul Rodriguez, Contributing Photographer)

  • Villa Park wide receiver Cole Cassara, right, beats Foothill’s Dean Pistone, left, but the pass falls incomplete in the second quarter in Orange on Friday, October 22, 2021. (Photo by Paul Rodriguez, Contributing Photographer)

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Foothill, coming off a loss in the final seconds to Yorba Linda, took a 35-27 lead on a sensational, 37-yard TD run by Overn with 9:15 left in the fourth. The speedy senior, committed to USC for baseball, bounced off a tackle at the 20-yard line and raced to the end zone.

Defending league champion Villa Park (7-2, 1-1) tied the score at 21-21 and 28-28 in the third quarter on a pair of touchdown passes by Nate Kornely, who passed for 302 yards despite playing with a sore shoulder. The reigning Crestview player of the year passed for three TDs and also rushed for a score before being shaken up on Hawkins’ final sack.

Kornely tossed a 26-yard TD to Diego Sanchez to cap the Spartans’ first possession of the third quarter and later connected on a 37-yarder to Cole Cassara with 53 seconds left in the third.

The Cassara TD came after Kornely bounced back from a hard hit by Foothill’s Dean Pistone and helped the Spartans answer a trick play by Foothill.

The Knights took a 28-21 lead in the middle of the third on a double-pass that featured Overn tossing a 65-yard strike to a wide open Brady Schrank.

Foothill sprinted to a 14-0 lead in the first quarter behind its ground attack and defense.

After the Knights forced Villa Park to turn the ball over on downs on the opening possession, Foothill marched 79 yards on three running plays to reach the end zone. Matt Little scored on a 4-yard run but sophomore Aaron Mitchell did the heavy lifting on the possession by breaking runs of 38 and 37 yards.

Mitchell finished with 165 yards on 15 carries.

Foothill inside linebacker Ethan Charpentier sparked the drive with a tackle for no gain on fourth-and-1 from the Knights 21.

The junior then recovered a fumble on the second play of the ensuing possession, giving Foothill the ball at the Villa Park 32. Overn followed a few plays later with a 12-yard TD run as the Knights opened a 14-0 lead with 3:52 left in the first quarter.

Villa Park capitalized on a special teams miscue early in the second quarter to find its footing. The Spartans took over the Foothill 26 after a botched punt attempt and drove for a 3-yard TD run by Kornely.

Foothill kept the pressure on with a 78-yard scoring drive capped by a 11-yard TD pass from Brody Jones to a leaping Overn. Jon Fobear added the extra-point and the Knights led 21-7 with 6:11 left in the half.

Villa Park hung close with a scoring drive just before half. The Spartans drove from their 30 for a 7-yard TD pass from Kornely to Sanchez with 16 seconds left to trim Foothill’s lead to 21-14.

Next week, Villa Park closes out the regular season by playing host to Yorba Linda at El Modena High. Foothill plays host to El Modena at Tustin High.

 

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Cypress football rolls over Kennedy to clinch share of Empire title


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ANAHEIM >> Cypress football started fast and showed no signs of slowing down in the second half, and Tomas Ramirez ran for 141 yards and four touchdowns in a 41-6 win over Kennedy in an Empire League game Thursday night at Western High.

The No. 14 Centurions (7-2, 4-0) clinched a share of the league championship with the victory and can secure an outright title with a win over Valencia next week in the league finale.

Cypress coach Rick Feldman was pleased with the team’s effort, especially in the second half after building a 21-0 lead at the break.

“We challenged our O-line, specifically (in the second half),” Feldman said. “We’re going to come out in our double-tight set, and we came out and were real effective and dominated the second half. That was huge, I don’t think we threw a pass in the second half.”

Ramirez touched the ball on all four plays — covering 70 yards — on the team’s opening drive of the second half. The drive ended with the senior scoring on an 11-yard run.

Cypress’ Tomas Ramirez had 4 TDs in a 41-6 win over rival Kennedy. Ramirez credited his linemen tonight and also wants to win an outright league championship. @ocvarsity @CHSLineSixFB @CypHS_Athletics @TomasRamirez_04 pic.twitter.com/9r1JCem8ay

— David Delgado🇪🇨 (@DavidDelgado_OC) October 22, 2021

After Trevor Monteleone intercepted Kennedy quarterback Alex Herrera on the next possession, Ramirez scored on a 37-yard run to make it 34-0 with 4:46 remaining in the third quarter.

Kennedy (4-4, 1-3) was without star wide receiver Hunter Benton, who missed the game due to concussion protocol.

The Centurions defense held the Fighting Irish in check all night, recording four sacks and two turnovers, which included a fumble recovery by Muhammad Hassoneh. Carson St. Amand and Ayden Gomez combined for three of the four sacks.

“They’re great, two undersized, 180-pound guys, with motors that don’t stop, they play real fast,” Feldman said of St. Amand and Gomez.

Herrera and Niko Brown connected for Kennedy’s only touchdown late in the third quarter, which was a 76-yard completion.

Cypress quarterback Matthew Morrell was efficient in throwing for 145 yards all in the first half, which included a 55-yard strike to Ramirez for the game’s first score and a screen pass to Devin Cobb who turned that into a 42-yard touchdown and a 21-0 advantage.

Cypress ATH Devin Cobb had a great performance which included a 42-yd TD reception, 57 yards rushing and a PBU. Cobb looks forward to ending the season with a a win over Valencia next week. @ocvarsity @CHSLineSixFB @DevinKCobb1 pic.twitter.com/V6AQBNM3No

— David Delgado🇪🇨 (@DavidDelgado_OC) October 22, 2021

Sophomore Jesse Mauldin added a 2-yard touchdown run for the Centurions in the third quarter.

Feldman said Cypress will not look past the Tigers next week.

“They’re a real physical team that runs the ball real well,” Feldman said. “They’re going to be prepared and they’re going to play hard, so we have to play like we did in the second half today, and be able to match their physicality. If we can do that, I think we have a chance.”

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Six Flags Magic Mountain unveils Wonder Woman single-rail coaster for 2022

Six Flags Magic Mountain will add an innovative new single-rail roller coaster where riders straddle a monorail track in 2022 as the Valencia amusement park ups its record-setting coaster count to 20.

The new Wonder Woman Flight of Courage single-rail coaster will debut in the DC Comics-themed area of Magic Mountain in summer 2022 as the world’s tallest and longest ride of its kind, according to Six Flags officials. The pandemic-delayed coaster was initially set to open in 2021.

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SEE ALSO: What’s next as Fright Fest continues to improve at Six Flags Magic Mountain

The new Wonder Woman Flight of Courage coaster will reach a top speed of 58 mph after climbing a 131-foot-tall lift hill and descending an 87-degree first drop. The ride’s four 12-passenger trains will travel over a 3,300-foot-long track featuring three inversions — a raven dive, zero gravity roll and 180-degree stall.

The Greek-inspired entrance and queue for Flight of Courage will be themed to the hidden island of Themyscira, the fictional home of Wonder Woman. The queue will showcase the legacy and life of Wonder Woman while explaining how she obtained her super powers.

The addition of the Wonder Woman coaster in the DC Universe area of the park will also include a new restaurant and bar as well as a retail shop.

SEE ALSO: Will Marvel zombies take over Disneyland’s Avengers Campus next Halloween?

The Raptor single-rail track by Rocky Mountain Construction employs an innovative new coaster design from the Idaho-based ride manufacturer. Passengers on a RMC single-rail coaster sit in an inline-style train with their legs straddling an I-beam track.

The RMC coaster track layout for Wonder Woman Flight of Courage is expected to stretch from the DC Universe area of the park to Metropolis Plaza near the Justice League 3-D dark ride. The new ride will be flanked by a pair of DC Comics-themed coasters: Riddler’s Revenge and Batman: The Ride.

Magic Mountain’s new coaster is expected to reuse the station house of the former Green Lantern: First Flight, an Intamin ZacSpin coaster that was removed and relocated to Montreal’s La Ronde amusement park.

The nearby Tidal Wave shoot-the-chutes water ride was removed to make room for the new Magic Mountain coaster with installation already underway on the footers for the new single-rail coaster track supports.

The new superhero coaster is expected to feature a double out-and-back layout with two turnarounds in the center of the Metropolis Plaza that should make for “quite an iconic sight,” according to Coaster Kings.

SEE ALSO: Six Flags Magic Mountain will require vaccination proof — but only on busy Fright Fest weekends

Magic Mountain’s new coaster appears to be a slightly larger West Coast version of the Jersey Devil coaster that recently opened at Six Flags Great Adventure in New Jersey.

Great Adventure’s Jersey Devil single-rail coaster debuted in June as the world’s tallest, fastest and longest ride of its kind. The 130-foot-tall coaster reaches a top speed of 58 mph over a 3,000-foot-long track through the woods, according to Roller Coaster Database. The Great Adventure coaster trains travel through a raven dive, 180-degree stall and zero-gravity roll.

Rocky Mountain Construction has built similar Raptor single-rail coasters at Six Flags Fiesta Texas (Wonder Woman Golden Lasso), California’s Great America (Railblazer) and Idaho’s Silverwood (Stunt Pilot).

SEE ALSO: Universal Studios Hollywood costs nearly 10 times more per ride than Disneyland, report says

The COVID-19 pandemic delayed the Magic Mountain coaster project that was initially set to debut in 2021.

Magic Mountain was quietly laying out plans for the innovative new single rail roller coaster just before the Valencia amusement park was shuttered by the coronavirus outbreak and Six Flags slashed $50 million in capital projects planned for the 2020 season.

The “2021 roller coaster” was approved in early March 2020 by the County of Los Angeles Department of Regional Planning just 10 days before Magic Mountain closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Orange County’s top committed football recruits, Oct. 20


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Top committed Orange County, Trinity League football recruits

Seniors, Class of 2022 

Cooper Barkate, Mater Dei, WR, 6-2, 190, Harvard

Raleek Brown, Mater Dei, RB, 5-8, 185, Oklahoma

Keyan Burnett, Servite, TE, 6-5, 200, Arizona

Nathan Burrell, St. John Bosco, DL, 6-3, 250, Cal

Kurt Chesney, Aliso Niguel, LS, 6-1, 220, Air Force

Noah Fifita, Servite, QB, 5-10, 170, Arizona

Mason Graham, Servite, DL, 6-4, 295, Michigan

Sione Hala, St. John Bosco, S, 6-2, 195, Boston College

Katin Houser, St. John Bosco, QB, 6-3, 200, Michigan State

Josh Hunter, Mater Dei, S, 5-10, 168, San Diego State

Blaze Iglesias, Orange, DE, 6-3, 255, Air Force

Domani Jackson, Mater Dei, CB, 6-1, 185, USC

Eoghan Kerry, Mater Dei, LB, 6-3, 234, Texas

Jacob Manu, Servite, LB, 5-11, 210, Arizona

Tetairoa McMillan, Servite, WR, 6-4, 185, Oregon

Braden Pegan, San Juan Hills, WR, 6-5, 195, UCLA

Jairus Satele, St. John Bosco, DL, 6-0, 270, Navy

Cameron Sidney, Mater Dei, CB, 5-11, 170, Cal

Adam Tomczyk, Los Alamitos, DL, 6-4, 265, Utah State

Taitai Uiagalelei, Mater Dei, DL, 6-5, 250, Washington State

CJ Williams, Mater Dei, WR, 6-2, 195, Notre Dame

Jalen Woods, St. John Bosco, LB, 6-0, 192, UCLA

Juniors, Class of 2023

Makai Lemon, Los Alamitos, WR/ATH, 5-11, 175, Oklahoma

Malachi Nelson, Los Alamitos, QB, 6-3, 180, Oklahoma

Deandre Moore Jr., Los Alamitos, WR/ATH, 5-11, 185, Oklahoma

Freshman, Class of 2025

Arron White, Orange, 6-2, 163, CB/ATH, Orange

Please send football recruiting news to Dan Albano at dalbano@scng.com or @ocvarsityguy Twitter

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California’s legal climate hurting small business owners

California small businesses are still reeling from the COVID-19 pandemic, but we shouldn’t be. Every day, more Americans are vaccinated and more businesses are opening up, yet small business owners continue to suffer unnecessary hardship.

Across the country, the states that are getting back to normal the quickest are those that prioritized protecting businesses from lawsuits that could put them under, while they were already vulnerable from reduced business during the worst of the pandemic. The leaders of those states know that small businesses are the backbone of the economy and responsible for providing services to local communities while supporting families through good paying jobs.

In California, however, we are forced to fight two battles – fending off unfair COVID-19-related lawsuits on one hand, while trying to keep up with expensive and changing public health guidelines on the other. For small business owners this means less money to pay bills and bring employees back to work. And it could very well be the straw that breaks the back’s for many businesses that have worked hard to stay open.

If this wasn’t bad enough, California already had one of the worst legal climates in the country. As a business owner, I know firsthand how tough it is to keep up with the legal loopholes and easy-to-exploit “pro-consumer” laws, such as the Americans with Disabilities Act standards that take advantage of well-meaning and inclusive businesses to deliver paydays to lawyers who are able to trip us up. We are in the business of matching customers with the goods and services they want, but we can’t do that to the best of our ability with these legal hurdles.

To make matters worse, California’s legal climate actually hurts the consumers it intends to help. When we cannot invest in our own businesses or afford to defend ourselves, prices go up for patrons, and workforces shrink. That makes for a lose-lose situation. How is this putting consumers and hardworking Californians first?

And to cap it off, California’s misguided legal climate hurts minority communities the most. Those of us whose businesses survived the pandemic are being counted on by our local communities to hire employees like other states are doing, but we cannot. There is a lot of talk about California being inclusive and pro-consumer, but we are left with more unemployed minorities and struggling businesses than many other states. It makes no sense.

Our leaders need to listen to reason and help protect hard-working Californians against damaging lawsuits. There is no justification for putting more hurdles in our path to economic recovery, especially given how tough things have been over the past year. The time is now to work hand in hand with the private sector to get more people back to work and start fixing the legal loopholes that have held us back for so long.

Edward Medina is the owner of Ramona’s Mexican Food, a chain of restaurants in Los Angeles County. He lives in Hacienda Heights.

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At first glance: Servite vs. Mater Dei matchup, Oct. 23

At first glance: Servite (8-0, 3-0) vs. Mater Dei (6-0, 3-0)

When: Saturday, Oct. 23, 8 p.m.

Where: Santa Ana Stadium

TV: Bally Sports West

MaxPreps national rankings: Mater Dei (1), Servite (8)

High School Football America national rankings: Mater Dei (1), Servite (20)

Calpreps state rankings: Mater Dei (1), Servite (2)

Tickets: Sold out in minutes Monday

Notable: Mater Dei has defeated Servite nine consecutive years in the rivalry. The Monarchs’ defense has been one of the keys, allowing no more than 22 points in any of the games. … Mater Dei leads the all-time series 41-17-2.  … The Monarchs are averaging 50.8 points, just ahead of the Friars at 49.8. Mater Dei is holding opponents to average of 9.5 points while Servite limits teams to 11.2. … In the spring, Mater Dei defeated Servite 24-17 in a penalty-married game at Santa Ana Stadium. The Monarchs were flagged 22 times for 201 yards, including several for pass interference against wide receiver Tetairoa McMillan (six catches for 107 yards). Mater Dei’s defense was led by David Bailey (four sacks) and cornerback Cam Sidney (interception return for TD). … Sophomore Elijah Brown of Mater Dei and senior Noah Fifita of Servite are two of the best QBs in the county.

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Senior Living: Age-related hearing loss is more common than you may think

By Dr. Jesse Tan,

Contributing writer

Hearing loss can have many origins.

If you served in the military, used loud machinery to garden, or were a musician, chances are you have some form of hearing loss. Those are just a few examples. And some hearing loss runs in families and is hereditary.

There is also a large population of older adults, however, that experience mild-to-moderate hearing loss — simply because of their age.  


Jesse Tan, MD, FACS, otolaryngologist-head and neck surgeon, Chief of Medical Staff at Long Beach Medical Center. (Courtesy photo)

Approximately one in three people ages 65 to 74 has hearing loss, and nearly half of those older than 75 have difficulty hearing, according to the National Institute on Aging. These are some astounding numbers!

It is one of the most common conditions affecting older adults. I see this often in my practice and the key is identifying the signs of early loss so something can be done about it, instead of just “chalking it up to getting older.”  

Signs of hearing loss  

Hearing loss is a sudden or gradual decrease in how well you can hear.

Sudden hearing loss is noticeable right away, and you should see your doctor immediately if that happens. Sometimes it is a sign of a heart condition, stroke, head injury or a serious infection.

The tricky part is when it’s gradual: Your hearing may just feel a little muffled over time and it may not alarm you enough to see a doctor. Some patients even joke with me that’s why they’ve been able to reach the golden years of marriage.

The problem is that over time, it gets worse and, eventually, it makes it harder to respond to warnings, like horns of cars or house alarms. It may be harder to hear, making it more difficult to comprehend a doctor’s or pharmacist’s orders. It can also be harder to enjoy talking with friends and family – which can be frustrating and maybe even embarrassing.  

Here are signs you have age-related hearing loss and don’t even realize it:    

  • You have trouble hearing when you talk on the phone.
  • You find yourself asking people to repeat themselves when they say something to you.
  • You find it hard to follow a conversation when two or more people are talking. 
  • You have your television or radio turned up loudly. (You may not notice, but your family or friends may comment on it.) 
  • You feel that background noise really impedes your ability to hear and you need a very quiet place to make out what people say.

Why should you get help?  

It really is important to talk to your doctor as soon as you start experiencing any of the signs above.

There is a correlation between hearing loss and cognitive function. Your auditory cortex involves your brain, nerves and ears, and it needs hearing to continue to process with good quality. Memory and thinking may also decline faster with hearing loss. There are even studies that show a link between dementia and the loss of hearing.  

The brain is like a muscle; the more you use it, the better and sharper it becomes. The sooner you improve the hearing input coming into the brain, the better it is for the brain.  

This is also important for your social relationships with friends and family. Friends and family can feel frustrated when communicating with you, and the one suffering from hearing loss could feel like a burden and start to self-isolate, which is never a good thing for anyone – but especially for older adults.  

Also, if you decide to use hearing aids to help you hear better, it is much easier to adapt and learn how to use them early on. As the brain gets older, sometimes it is harder to learn new functions, and hearing aids may not work as well as hearing loss worsens.  

Coping with hearing loss  

Perhaps you already have some hearing loss by the time you read this article. That’s OK!

It’s never too late to slow the progression and learn what you can do now to improve your overall health and well-being. The best advice I can give you is to be open and honest about your hearing loss to your friends and family. Talk to your doctor – they may refer you to an audiologist or an otolaryngologist, like myself, to check your hearing and let you know your options.

Here are some tips: 

  • Let people know you have a hearing problem.
  • Ask people to face you and speak slowly and enunciate (no mumbling). 
  • Watch facial expressions and gestures to help with comprehension.
  • Try to move to a space that is quieter to help you understand the conversation.
  • Tell someone if you don’t understand; it’s OK to have them repeat it.
  • Talk to your physician about a hearing test and see if you are a candidate for hearing aids.

Devices to improve hearing  

After you speak with your physician, you may choose to pursue treatments to help treat hearing loss.  Here are two:

  • Hearing Aids: These are electronic instruments that you wear in your ear to help make sounds louder. There are many different types on the market; some are quite small and not noticeable, and some can help tune out background noise. It could take some time to find the right one, so ask for a trial period when trying out hearing aids.  
  • Cochlear Implants: These are surgically implanted in the inner ear to help provide a sense of sound for people who are very hard of hearing. If your hearing loss is severe, these can help you hear better.  

While age-related hearing loss is common, it does not need to impact your quality of life. Talk to your physicians to find out what is the healthiest option for you, so you can live a happy, fulfilling life.  

Dr. Jesse Tan is the Chief of medical staff at MemorialCare Long Beach Medical Center. He is a board-certified surgeon who specializes in head and neck surgery/otolaryngology. He is the medical director of the Tan Head & Neck Center in Long Beach. He completed his undergraduate studies at the UCLA and a six-year residency training program in head and neck surgery/otolaryngology at UCLA Medical Center. He is trained in all aspects of the specialty, including head and neck tumors, sinus problems, laryngeal and voice disorders, ear disorders, and facial plastic and reconstructive surgery. 

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