“This is the worst-case scenario,” says an evacuee of the CZU Lightning Complex fire in a story this week by Jacob Pierce. I honestly can’t think of a better way to sum up what we’re all feeling right now. Covid-19 has had Santa Cruz County on the ropes for months, but the last week and a half since that freak lightning storm touched off massive fires in the Santa Cruz Mountains and around the state has made the on-and-off quarantines and bizarre toilet paper hoarding of the spring seem like “the good old days.” You know, back when our neighborhoods weren’t burning down. When our evacuees didn’t have to add a new coronavirus risk to their list of worries by congregating in the Santa Cruz Civic and other shelter points. When we could go outside.
There will be so much loss to take stock of when these fires are over, both for our community and the individuals who have lost priceless parts of their lives. Just read the story this week by Aaron Carnes about Dan Frechette, who recorded an album in his Bonny Doon studio the night before it burned in the fire. He still doesn’t know if his home was lost, as well. Or the stories of the evacuees who are facing decisions about if and when they can rebuild, or if they even want to try. It’s a heartbreaking time.
There are also amazing stories about the work that firefighters, law enforcement and other community members are doing, and we’ll continue to tell those, as well. We’re constantly updating our coverage of the fire at goodtimes.sc; look there for the latest news and for resources. It seems like we’ve been saying “we’ll get through this together” all year, but it’s never meant as much as right now.
STEVE PALOPOLI | EDITOR-IN-CHIEF
Letters to the Editor
Since the fires began, readers have been posting about them on goodtimes.sc; some addressing our coverage, others simply wanting to send a message to the community. Here are a few of them:
Thank you for your excellent coverage. I keep combing the web to see if there’s any news about a place cherished by hundreds of thousands of Baha’is across the U.S., and even in other countries: the Bosch Baha’i School on Comstock Lane, near Bonny Doon, but closer to the northern double back curve of Pine Flat Road. I believe it has been used as a staging area for previous fires, but none have been as horrendous as the network of fires started by the lightning that we’re reading about. If you know the fate of “Bosch” (as we call it), kindly let us know. Many thanks! And stay safe.
— Gwyn Magaditsch
My heart aches for all my loved ones, their homes, their farms, and the wildlife in Santa Cruz County. I have lived in Felton, Davenport, and Boulder Creek. I hope with all my heart that the weather aids the first responders in containing these fires. Stay safe everyone.
— Michele Maxwell
My heart hurts for my hometown of Boulder Creek. Stay safe my loves.
Our prayers are with you all.
Awesome reporting! Best news I’ve read so far on fires. Peace to all!
— Karen P.
My wife and I are in Tahoe after evacuating Scotts Valley Thursday evening. Thanks to all the firefighters, and prayers for all to get through Covid-19 and fire.
— Fred Tomlinson
My father built our family cabin on Kings Highway in Boulder Creek in 1931. There have been no fires since it was built and none for some time before it was constructed. So it is closer to 100 years since there was a fire and that’s made for one thick forest bed. The fire could easily hide in the loam for some time after the main conflagration has passed. Add a little wind, and we do it all again.
— Bruce Springer
Awesome reporting. Great journalism. Thank you for such thorough information.
— Angela White
Our prayers are with you.
— Faten Mansour
Prayers for all.
— Sandra Jordan
Lately there have been concerns about renaming Cabrillo College. Whether I agree or not is not a concern. If you refer to a map of our local area, you’ll see that Cabrillo College is directly east of New Brighton State Beach. I would like to be the first to recommend the new name to be New Brighton Beach College, or simply New Brighton College.
George Zadravec | Aptos