Letters • 10-31-2012 | Print |  E-mail

Castro Valley Sports Bid Farewell to a Great Fan



I didn’t want to let the passing of one of Castro Valley’s most supportive sports’ enthusiasts occur without notice.

I received a call Monday from a former player, and long-time friend, Lloyd Johnson, that his father, Arthur Johnson, had passed away on Tuesday, Oct. 23rd.


Art, as most knew him, with his crew-cut, and CV (or Cal, or A’s) hat, was a fixture at most CV High Football, Soccer (far before it was the “in-thing”), baseball, track, and most recently softball; since the mid-1970s to the present. Art had 3 children with his wife, Jan. Oldest son, Dave (deceased), and twins, Lloyd, and Linda.  He had many grandchildren, and great grandkids (too many to list).

Whether he was on the sidelines (as part of the chain-gang), or behind the screen of  a baseball/softball game, he was always supporting the CV teams his kids, and/or grandkids were playing on that day.  I know as a fact, because I coached both of his boys, that he could not have always agreed with decisions that we coaches made in terms of “playing time” or “strategy”, but the entire time, we never heard a complaint.


As a teacher, coach, and AD here in CV for 40 years, I can tell you this was hugely appreciated, and extremely rare. Art was one of those parents that knew what went on the playing fields could have applications in real life, and that there are lessons that can be learned...one of those being that life is not always fair, but you give your best, and play hard to the end.


Art also was a big “Cal” and Oakland A’s fan. I know he was in charge of the ushers at the


Cal basketball games, and was involved in many of the Cal Booster activities.


In closing, my last experience with Art was last spring at the CV-Arroyo softball game, and it reinforced his life-long love of sports, and his support of his family. I went up to Art to say


Hello, but noticed he was on his “cell” phone.

I didn’t want to interrupt, but suddenly he handed me his phone, and said, “say  Hello to Lloyd!” Come to find out, Art was giving his son a pitch-by-pitch, play-by-play, account of the game, being pitched by his Granddaughter, Baylee Johnson of CV, as Lloyd, her father, being a truck driver, was driving back from LA! This was Art to the core, as he was so, so supportive of his family, and he loved his sports being played by them.

Thanks Art, for being what a parent, and grandparent should be!  You’ll be missed!

—Bob Friery, Castro Valley



Docent Urges a Yes Vote on Measure A-1: For

Improving, Not Expanding, the Oakland Zoo


The Oakland Zoo is a small but dazzling jewel – respected throughout the country for cutting-edge animal management, education, and conservation... and it is ours. Sadly, there has been misinformation about Measure A-1.

Be assured that Measure A-1 is not for any kind of expansion.

Measure A1 reads that by law, the money must be used for animal care, children’s educational programs, and maintaining the Zoo’s affordability.

Money can go towards upgrading animal enclosures and repairing animal shelters – but this “construction” has nothing to do with expanding the existing zoo – only for repairing and improving existing ones.

Parcel tax measures, like A-1, are always set up to describe how money will be used, not how it will not be used. However, because of a contingent that confuses Measure A-1 with expanding the Zoo, the Zoo has clarified, on the record, its intent and commitment that no


Measure A1 funds will be used for the California Trail expansion construction.

How lucky we are to have a world-class zoo at our doorsteps. Please vote yes on A-1.

Sidney Simpson, Docent, Oakland Zoo




Says Castro Valley Schools Will Feel ‘Full Brunt’ of

Budget Crisis if Prop. 30 Doesn’t Pass


The election on Nov. 6 is critical for our excellent Castro Valley

schools. So far, our school board and district officials have been able to

avoid the worst effects of the budget crisis, but this election is likely

to be a tipping point.

All of the “easy” ways to save money have already been done. Another $6 billion will be eliminated from the state education budget. California’s once world-class educational system will be seriously damaged, and we in Castro Valley will feel the full brunt of the crisis.

Our schools are too important to all of us here to let this

happen. Governor Brown has offered a reasonable way to do this. Please vote “Yes” on Prop. 30. Thank you.

Gary C. Howard, Castro Valley



Calls for ‘Yes’ on Prop. 30 – ‘We Can’t Afford Further Disastrous Cuts to Education


I’ve already cast my vote, but I write to urge my community to vote for Prop. 30.

Few of us “like” to pay taxes, but our economic security depends on having an educated workforce. During the six years my children attended Castro Valley High I saw some wonderful young teachers laid off, as well as my daughter’s terrific counselor.

We lost classes, increased class sizes, and ultimately decreased the school day by an entire period. We can’t afford further disastrous cuts to education and hope to compete in a global economy.


Prop. 30 will put the greatest burden on the people who can best afford to help save the education system that was once the best in the nation.


Prop. 32, however, will prohibit Union members from contributing to elections, while permitting major corporations and wealthy special interest groups to spend unlimited dollars.


Don’t be fooled by its deceptive language!

Yes on 30, no on 32!

Irene S Landaw, MD, Castro Valley


Questions Siegel’s Reason for Voting for Stark



I’m writing in response to David Siegel’s letter (Supports Re-election of ‘Sometimes Eccentric’ Pete Stark for Congress,” Letters, Oct. 24) in which the writer gives reasons why he is voting for Pete Stark.

My response is not to the fact that he is voting for Pete Stark, but to the reasons behind his vote.


Since when do we owe our government representatives the choice to retire on their own terms?? I thought that we, the voters, decided that.?

“He should be able to personally select someone who will carry on his noble and good ideas for us in his district.” His district?? I thought it was our district.

Should an elected government representative groom and select his or her own successor? Not in the democracy I live in. This rings of a dictatorship.

Vote for the representative you believe will serve your community best and not because you believe you owe him/her (our members of Congress are compensated very well when they retire.)

Remember, our representatives in government work for us, not the other way around.

Elisabeth Stephens, Castro Valley


Glad to Get the Forum’s Candidate Profiles

Last Week




Thank you for running the election edition this week. Robert Souza and the editors did a great job and I appreciate the exposure to the


Ron Hull, Castro Valley



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