Each year, and for as long as she can remember, Mary Tryba has celebrated her birthday in style. “We sat on the front porch and had cake and ice cream and watched the fireworks,” said Tryba, a Navy veteran and resident of the Veterans Homes of California-Chula Vista. She turns 77 today. Cake, ice cream, […]

On July 1, 1922, a 28-year-old disabled World War I veteran became the first recipient of a Farm and Home Loan from the state of California in what ultimately became the CalVet Home Loans Program.  The 1,185 square foot bungalow style home, on North Townsend Avenue in Los Angeles, sold for $4,120, which came out to a monthly payment of $25.94. Of course, he had no way of […]

American troops line up on the streets of Nazarie. Saint

The French port of Saint Nazaire, in the Bay of Biscay, was supposed to be among the best-kept secrets of World War I. Why? Because that is where the first 14,000 American infantrymen were to land on June 26, 1917. German submarines had been wreaking havoc in the Atlantic Ocean, and loose lips could turn […]

Seventy years ago today, 75,000 North Korean soldiers, supplied by the Soviets and aided by the Chinese, bull-rushed across the 38th Parallel into South Korea. They took Seoul within a few days, and the Korean War – soon to be called the “Forgotten War” – commenced on June 25, 1950. Split into two countries when […]

Zoe Dunning would love to be able to say that with one stroke of President Barack Obama’s pen he ended her 18-year fight for equality in the United States Military by signing the repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” three days before Christmas in 2010. That, however, would be far too simplistic in the world […]

Let’s face it — fatherhood has its challenges. The days of less responsibility, leaving the house on a whim, staying out late with friends and co-workers without finding a sitter, cooking for just yourself (and significant other, if applicable), and other small freedoms you took for granted, are over for a while. But perhaps the […]

On June 19, 1865 – more than two months after Lee surrendered to Grant at Appomattox – Union General Gordon Granger arrived in Galveston, Texas. Why? To tell 250,000 enslaved people that they were now free. Thus, Juneteenth (combining June and the Nineteenth) became the day each year African Americans across the nation celebrate that […]

As unheralded days that defined America go, none might have been as important as June 14 through June 18, 1775. Why? Because on June 14 of that year, the Continental Congress created the Continental Army. A day later, on June 15, the Congress voted unanimously to appoint George Washington to lead the Army. On June […]

Seventy-six years ago, on the morning of June 6, 1944, Charles Fenley and the crew of Landing Craft Tank (LCT) 528 landed at Normandy’s Utah Beach. By then, more than 21,000 Americans had stormed that beach, and 197 perished. Fenley and his LCT crew were fortunate, he told the Modesto Bee in 2017. “By the […]

On the morning of November 8, 2018, as Shane Murray drove from his new home in Paradise to work in Oroville, he looked into his rear-view mirror and saw a plume of smoke billowing against an otherwise azure sky. By the time he told his boss he needed to return home to evacuate – that […]