Has It Really Been 10 Years?

Like the fabled Phoenix bird, Scripps Ranch rose from the ashes bigger and better. We remember the terrible destruction of the Cedar Fire and the loss of so many homes together with all the family treasures. We are mindful of the wonderful community spirit always present, which functioned to help one another.

I was alerted by the sound of fire truck sirens and then smelled the smoke of the fire sweeping toward us. I dressed quickly and, lo and behold, Bob Ilko was at my door to pick me up and said fire is everywhere. We drove through the streets to the south part of the Ranch and could feel the heat of the houses on fire. Many times, the fire crews could just stand and watch a house totally engulfed in flames disappear because the heat was so intense.

My wife, Gaye, my daughter, Susan, and I collected a few items—and, of course, our dog—and went to Mira Mesa High School. There, our wonderful neighbors had set up an evacuation center, including a place for pets. Simply fantastic.

More and more fire rigs continued to arrive from all over to help fight the fire. They set up a command post and field kitchen in the Jerabek Park parking lot. Despite their best efforts, whole streets were consumed by the fierce flames.

Once residents were allowed back into their neighborhoods, many were devastated to find their homes in total ruins. It was a sad day, indeed. We shed many a tear together, yet with a wonderful spirit they rallied. After a lot of work, our community was rebuilt bigger and better than before.

Again, despite the terrible losses to any families, it was Scripps Ranch’s finest hour of working together as a family-oriented community. Our then-Councilmember Brian Maienschein established a “One-Stop Shop” at the Rec Center and helped orchestrate a fantastic support operation with the city. Even Brian’s family—mom, Carol, and dad, Gene—helped staff his booth. The Scripps Ranch Civic Association was there throughout the process, working to make things a bit easier for the fire survivors. There were also the countless number of volunteers who came out to help their neighbors. We lived through the terrible firestorm working together.

Fire season is here again. Update your family evacuation plan and assemble your valuables to remove. And with the help of all the information in this Special Edition SRCA Newsletter, be prepared.

Annual Clean-Up Day

Just a reminder that we will hold our Annual Fall Clean-Up Day on Saturday, Oct. 12, from 8 am until noon, run by the Kiwanis Club. Coldwell Banker again will provide a large paper shredder in their office parking lot for you to destroy your outdated documents. It will be at 12036 Scripps Highlands Drive—next to Chili’s—on Saturday, Oct. 12, from 9 am and noon. Join your friends and neighbors and make the Ranch sparkle.

If you have unwanted electronic items, there’s an e-waste event on the same day from 10 am to 2 pm at Marshall Middle School. It’s a fundraiser for the Scripps Ranch High School cheer team. For more details and to see what’s accepted, go to [www.scrippsranchfalcons.org].

Also, please cut back your plants that are too close to the sidewalks or block them. Put these out for collection as well.

Another focused clean-up day was held in late September at Miramar Lake, sponsored by I Love a Clean San Diego. This countywide clean up of our lakes and beaches is a very productive community event. Gaye and I have a fond place in our hearts for this effort, as we helped organize and establish it when we worked with I Love a Clean San Diego many years ago. So happy to see such a wonderful program still going strong and making a positive impact on our environment.

School Days, Here We Go Again

The new school superintendent, Cindy Marten, has selected no less than 40 new principals with wide teaching experience. Here in Scripps Ranch, we welcomed two new principals: Sue Devicariis at Jerabek Elementary; and, Liz Sloan at Ellen Browning Scripps Elementary. This is your time to restate your support of your school program and its principal to reach the highest achievement.

I say this as the district has adopted the new nationwide educational system called the Common Core State Standards (CCSS). This will require some additional study to understand and comply with what students and teachers must learn for continued positive results.

We have achieved great standards of excellence in all of our Scripps Ranch schools, and it is with your parental support that the schools will continue to excel. Our children benefit from the best educational experience with pride. With your help, it happens!

San Diego: Start of a New Era

With the resignation of Bob Filner as mayor after alleged actions that damaged our reputation as American’s Finest City, we look forward with confidence to a new leader. We have the ability to identify, prioritize, and solve our problems and to elect the proper person as mayor.

It means each one of us can do our share by identifying where action is needed, and then help solve the issue. An example was the Capital Improvement Program, led by our two planning groups, that solicited potential projects to improve our community. Both groups urged residents to recommend projects to help Scripps Ranch.

In addition, there are many candidates throwing their hats in the ring. They all want to lead our fine city. Be sure to do your homework, find the candidate who you want to be mayor, and then vote in the special election on Tuesday, Nov. 19.

Stolen Identity

It’s up to each of us to guard our identity in this day of electronic marvels. Leaving your laptop or cell phone in your car is not a good idea, even if it’s parked in your driveway or unlocked garage. We have had a number of car break-ins, so be sure you don’t leave valuables in your car.

Construction Work in Hoyt Park

Just a reminder that the construction work is still in progress at the entrance to Hoyt Park. This might be a good time to avoid the area. Thanks.

Bob Dingeman