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Man Robs WalMart At Gunpoint
LA MESA -- August 24th, at about 4:10 p.m. an unknown Hispanic male suspect entered the garden center entrance of WalMart at 5500 Grossmont Center Drive. He selected a bottle of glue, brought it to the garden center register and presented a $1.00 bill to the cashier. When the cashier opened the cash drawer, the suspect put a gun on the counter and pointed it towards the cashier. The suspect verbally demanded money and the cashier put an undetermined amount of money into a WalMart bag. The suspect fled on foot away from WalMart and was not located.
The suspect was wearing a black and red “Angels” ball cap, black shirt with white print “All My Friends Are Walkers”, a black and yellow backpack, and dark pants. The victim did not notice any distinguishing marks, scars or tattoos on the suspect.
The suspect is described as a large Hispanic male, approximately 30-35 years of age, 5'9", 275-300 pounds, with particularly dark skin and very short hair.
The gun presented by the suspect was a dark semi-automatic type handgun.
If you have any information on this case, please call the La Mesa Police Department at (619) 667-1400.
You may also call Crime Stoppers’ anonymous toll-free tip line (888) 580-TIPS (or www.sdcrimestoppers.com). You can remain anonymous, and be eligible for a reward of up to $1,000 for information leading to an arrest in this case.
Hart Optical Co., 8685 La Mesa Blvd., La Mesa, is noting August as “Children’s Eye Health and Safety Awareness Month” with back-to-school tips about children’s vision. “Approximately one in four school age children have some type of vision problem which can affect their success in school,” said Michael Emerson, a Registered Ophthalmic Dispenser who has owned and operated Hart Optical Co. since 1987.
Emerson said, according to Prevent Blindness America, parents should be aware of the following possible warning signs of vision problems in children: Consistently sitting too close to the TV or holding a book too close; Losing their place while reading or using a finger as a guide when reading; Squinting or tilting their head to see better; Frequent eye rubbing; Sensitivity to light or excessive tearing; Closing one eye to read, watch TV or to see better; Avoiding activities such as reading or homework, which requires near vision, or participating in sports or other recreational activities, which requires distance vision; Complaining of headaches or tired eyes; Avoiding using a computer, because it “hurts my eyes.”
As part of back-to-school preparations, Emerson recommends scheduling an eye exam with either an Optometrist or Ophthalmologist. He also said free screenings will be available on from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 12, at the Grossmont Healthcare District’s Kids Care Fest at the Lakeside Rodeo Grounds.
It’s not often that dreams held during childhood endure long enough to become realities as an adult. Yet for EmbroidMe of La Mesa owner Andy Kohler, that’s exactly what happened when he took ownership of the embroidery business in July named by Entrepreneur Magazine as number one in its industry. Located at 7018 University Avenue, Andy serves La Mesa and Spring Valley with services that include garment printing, promotional products and the embroidery services that have earned the business its reputation.
Enamored with art since taking a graphic design course in high school, Andy attended The Art Institute of California where he first came upon then-fledgling EmbroidMe in an article. Joining a small t-shirt shop after college, Andy helped grow the business throughout his 15 years there, honing his artistic talents and increasing his business acumen. But with EmbroidMe on his mind throughout the years and an increasing passion to own a business of his own, Andy left his job and pursued his dreams as the owner of his own EmbroidMe.
“The concept fit both my passion for graphic design and embroidery,” said Andy. “I liked the idea of the package deal franchising provided as it seemed a lot smarter to start out with what you need for the business to succeed instead of having to build it all up from scratch and learn as you go. There is a great support system with EmbroidMe that I knew I could take advantage of, so I jumped in and became a part of the system.”
Since opening his business, the community response has been impressive. While Andy has noted competition in his area, no one business, he said, can provide all that EmbroidMe provides.
“EmbroidMe of La Mesa provides a better customer experience than what customers have come to expect from competitors,” Andy said. “We offer more than…Continue
Meeting Focuses On Sudden Heart Stoppage
LA MESA -- The Grossmont Healthcare District’s Dr. William C. Herrick Community Health Care Library, 9001 Wakarusa St. in La Mesa, will host a free program on “Help Save a Life from Sudden Cardiac Arrest” from 10 to 11 a.m. on Wednesday, Aug. 26. The program is part of the library’s Wellness Wednesday series, normally held on the fourth Wednesday of the month.
The speaker on Aug. 26 will be Maureen O’Connor, program manager, San Diego Project Heart Beat, the city of San Diego’s Public Access Defibrillation/CPR program managed by the San Diego Fire-Rescue Department.
O’Connor will discuss the simple steps of quick recognition and response to cardiac arrest. Attendees will have the opportunity for hands-on experience of using an automatic external defibrillator (AED).
San Diego Project Heart Beat's objective is to make AED devices as accessible as fire extinguishers in public and private places throughout the community. Its mission is to save lives by placing AEDs throughout San Diego County and to provide CPR/AED education and awareness.
The Herrick Library, which opened in 2002, is a consumer health public library specializing in health research information, accessible both on-site and via the Internet. The library is operated by the Grossmont Healthcare District, a public agency that supports health-related community programs and services in San Diego’s East County. For more information, phone the library at (619) 825‑5010 or visit www.herricklibrary.org. …Continue
Assembly Speaker Toni Atkins to Headline Dem Meeting
Party in the Park Called a Huge Success
La Mesa Foothills Democratic Club will host the Speaker of the California State Assembly Toni Atkins at our special August 5 meeting. The Speaker will cover a wide range of topics including a legislative update and how San Diegans can and will be affected by the new state budget. And a new California Law sponsored by Speaker Atkins mandating that Residential Care Facilities carry liability insurance will get special attention.
The Wednesday night meeting will start with social time at 6:30 PM and the talking gets underway at 7 PM. LMFDC represents the communities of Allied Gardens, Del Cerro, San Carlos, La Mesa, Mt. Helix, Santee, College area and other close in East County towns. We meet at the La Mesa Community Center at 4975 Memorial Dr. just North of University Avenue.
Assembly Speaker Toni G. Atkins has served in the California State Assembly since 2010, and was elevated to the top leadership post in 2014, when her colleagues unanimously elected her 69th Speaker of the California Assembly. Speaker Atkins proudly represents the people of coastal San Diego, from Imperial Beach, north to Solana Beach, and most of central San Diego. She previously served eight years on the San Diego City Council, and became a stabilizing force during a tumultuous period in 2005, stepping in as Acting Mayor after the resignation of the mayor.
Speaker Atkins is a coalition-builder who believes government policies can improve people's lives. She is a leading voice for affordable housing, a powerful advocate for women, and champion for veterans and homeless people. Prior to her…Continue
LA MESA -- An accident Saturday evening on El Cajon Boulevard in La Mesa resulted in the death of a pedestrian.
La Mesa police said that at approximately 8:42 p.m. the La Mesa Police Department received a report of a pedestrian that was struck by a vehicle in the 7500 block of El Cajon Boulevard.
The pedestrian was a 61-year-old male and was walking across westbound lanes of traffic when he was struck by a 2-door sedan. The driver of the sedan remained at the scene and was cooperative with the investigation. Alcohol was not a factor in the collision.
The victim was transported to the hospital in critical condition but later succumbed to his injuries. His identity is being withheld pending family notifications.
The investigation is ongoing. Anyone with information is encouraged to call the La Mesa Police Department.
Entrepreneur Uses 'Cats' To Help Dogs
LA MESA -- Thirteen-year-old Ariana Erickson spends her summers in a somewhat unconventional way. Instead of going to camp she spends much of her days honing her skills as a young entrepreneur through a business she created called Ariana’s Garden. Her parents can attest to the fact that she has always loved creating and selling things and has a great head for business. At the age of 9 her school had a fundraiser to collect donations to help build clean water wells in Ethiopia. Ariana knew she could make things to raise even more money and this is when she realized she loved making and selling things and supporting environmental causes. Starting with jewelry, and garden gifts she has progressed to a line of homemade bath and body products for the past two years. Combing the Internet looking for great recipes, she fine tunes them and makes them her own using simple natural ingredients whenever possible. Her latest creation is a solid perfume locket with essential oils which is selling like hot cakes.
What started as small sales in the street in front of her house, has grown steadily over the years. Ariana‘s mom has taken on the duties of packaging, marketing, and promotions allowing Ariana to focus her efforts on production and sales. She now sells items at craft fairs, at a boutique shop in downtown La Mesa called Handful of Wildflowers, and to faithful repeat customers who visit her home shop. Happily, her parents have had to keep giving her a bigger and bigger space in the guestroom/office/Ariana’s Garden shop. The sacrifice of time and space has been more than worth it knowing they are supporting this effort which has given…Continue
'Summer Bash' Business Expo Coming
LA MESA -- The La Mesa Chamber of Commerce will present “Summer Bash,” a business expo, from 5:30 to 8 p.m., Wednesday, Aug. 12, at the La Mesa Community Center, 4975 Memorial Dr., La Mesa. Admission is $10 per person. Beer and wine will be available for sale. Raffles and door prizes hosted by vendors and participants are planned. To RSVP, send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org or call (619) 465-7700.
The event will feature food sampling and 45 display tables, according to Mary England, Chamber CEO. “We encourage the public to join us and meet our business community in this fun-filled setting,” said England.
Among the food providers: BJ's Restaurant and Brewhouse, Cali Comfort BBQ, El Torito - La Mesa, Farm Fresh To You, Grove Pastry Shop and Custom Cakes, Los Pinos Taco Shop, Marie Callender's - La Mesa, Riviera Supper Club, Round Table Pizza, Samuel Adams, Souplantation, The Hills Local Pub and The Regal Bar.
Event sponsors include American Medical Response, Carl Burger Dodge Chrysler Jeep RAM World, Kostedt Design & Marketing, La Mesa Courier, SDG&E, Sycuan Casino, Viejas Casino & Resort and Welcome Wagon.
The Grossmont Healthcare District (GHD), a public agency that supports health-related community programs and services in San Diego’s East County, recently hosted a check-presentation ceremony with La Maestra Community Health Centers. Joining GHD board members from La Maestra were Zara Marselian, CEO, and Marty Stroud, director of dental operations. The ceremony celebrated GHD’s ongoing support of La Maestra, including a $34,876 grant awarded during GHD’s current fiscal year.
GHD’s grant is assisting with expanding access to dental services at La Maestra’s Lemon Grove Health Center, 7967 Broadway, Lemon Grove. La Maestra officials said the grant helped pay for new dental chairs and high-speed dental hand-pieces powered by compressed air or an electric motor that are commonly used for cleaning, polishing, grinding and drilling. La Maestra also said the new equipment has successful expanded preventative oral health care and treatment services, as well as preventing oral disease, benefiting more than 2,600 underserved and low-income East County residents.
Now celebrating its 25th anniversary, La Maestra Community Health Centers, a nonprofit 501(c)(3) federally qualified health center, operates health centers in El Cajon, Lemon Grove, National City and City Heights, as well as a mobile clinic. Through its award-winning “Circle of Care” model, La Maestra serves more than 40,000 people annually with medical, dental, optometry, mental health and imaging services, as well as legal advocacy, economic empowerment and social services. Its mission is to provide quality health care and education and improve the overall wellbeing of the family; bringing under-served and ethnically-diverse communities into the mainstream through a caring, effective, culturally and linguistically competent manner, respecting the dignity of all patients.
The Grossmont Healthcare District is a public agency that serves as landlord of Grossmont Hospital,…Continue
LA MESA -- William Charles McKay, a long-time resident of La Mesa, passed away at sunrise on Sunday, July 19, 2015.
Bill was born Nov. 5, 1947 in Fallbrook to parents Howard and Thelma McKay. When he was seven, he moved with his family to National City where he graduated from Sweetwater High School in 1965.
Bill served in the Army in Vietnam from 1967-69; he worked at NASSCO, retiring after 44 years.
Along with enjoying family, friends, BBQ’s, music, and “fish tacos”, he enthusiastically participated in many activities, such as biking, hiking and gardening; and “way back,'' in younger years, his activities would include surfing and church baseball leagues. A favorite summer fun when his family was young was to “camp” up at Cardiff over the ocean. Through many years, Bill also very much enjoyed being active in church and helping in youth programs. A joy for him was regularly singing in the choir at Christ Lutheran Church, La Mesa. A “Celebration of his Life” is being held there Tuesday, July 28, at 11 a.m.
Loving husband and father, Bill, is survived by his wife of 37 years, Cathy, and their daughter Cailin (McKay) Acosta, son Billy McKay, and his daughter Kasey McKay-Erwin (of previous marriage with Joyce) ; and four grandchildren: Price Erwin, Seth Erwin, Alex Acosta, Cecilia Acosta; and brothers, Howard McKay and David McKay, sister, Andrea McKay Dixon.
All who knew Bill felt blessed having shared some of life’s seasons with him.
Love and Peace and memories live…