Friday, January 12, 2007

Death in San Pedro

Saturday afternoon I was standing at the Miami’s Car Wash on Gaffey and 18th street down the hill from our house in lower San Pedro when I heard the sirens. And then, racing west, were fire trucks that, frankly, you don’t see much of out here. Even with all the press of fires in California you really don’t see many out here ( and I say this when a bunch of houses just burned down in Malibu tonight but nevertheless – you don’t see fires much along the coast).

I looked to the skyline to see if a smoke plume would appear but there was nothing. My car got cleaned and I went home.

Deborah was in art class at Angel’s Gate – where barracks from the converted Fort McArthur were turned into classrooms for art, yoga and who knows what else. It sits on a bluff near the Korean Bell which overlooks the cliffs of Point Fermin and its park. Basically the Pacific Ocean.

You’ve seen Fermin Park on TV and in the movies. It’s usually where a picnic breaks out. It was also the cliff scene in Chinatown when Jack Nicholson discovered that potable water was being dunked in the Pacific Ocean to make it more profitable in the desert rising out of nothing which was Los Angeles. It is also the home of many San Pedro functions and local festivals – Shakespeare in the Park, Taste of San Pedro et al. Really nice place with spectacular views and cliffs that have a 90 degree drop off. We walk/run there all of the time. It’s a mile from the house.

Deborah came back from art class (it got out a five) saying she watched firemen trying to save somebody from the cliffs who had fallen down. It wasn’t until later that night that we realized that person was the field goal kicker from USC who had just played in the Rose Bowl less than a week ago - Mario Danello.

A San Pedro High school guy who made it big at USC – and there have been many – met his fate at those cliffs – and so soon after the Rose Bowl – well it has bowed the San Pedro community who holds these ties so greatly and the University as well.

He was just probably playing around in his old stomping grounds after a successful season and screwed up. If you go over those fences you take you life in your hand because it is a straight drop. Nature can get you like that some times.

God bless.

1 comment:

Tink said...

Geez. That's scary. As clutzy as I am, I think I'd be avoiding those cliffs at all cost.