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Homeless memorial held in Rockville

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Homeless memorial 1Rabbi David Shneyer urged the crowd never to be complacent during a memorial service for the 27 people who died during the past year. PHOTO BY SUZANNE POLLAKROCKVILLE — A marine, a chef, a hippie and an artist were four of the 27 homeless people who died in Montgomery County during the past 12 months. Wednesday morning, County officials and nonprofit employees who work with the homeless gathered to pay their respects in a memorial service at the Executive Office Building in Circuit Court Plaza.

The service marked the kickoff of the County’s campaign to end homelessness in 2020 for families with children.

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“These T-Shirts Could Fit Me”

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Memorial making its rounds through the county outlines those killed in school shootings

A memorial to students killed by gun violence this year is currently on display at Richard Montgomery High School.  PHOTO BY SUZANNE POLLAKA memorial to students killed by gun violence this year is currently on display at Richard Montgomery High School.  PHOTO BY SUZANNE POLLAK  As David Williams gazed at the display of T-shirts blowing in the breeze at Richard Montgomery High School in Rockville, he shook his head and said, “These could be my classmates. These T-shirts could fit me.”

Each of the 258 T-shirts hanging along a fence at the high school depicts one young life that had been cut down so far this year due to gun violence in schools throughout the country.

Williams, a 17-year-old high-school senior, said, “It’s important to demonstrate a point like this. It’s definitely attracting attention.”

The T-shirt exhibit has been making the rounds at the many County high schools and already visited Winston Churchill High School in Potomac and Bethesda-Chevy Chase High School.

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Vietnam War veterans attend unveiling of memorial in Rockville

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A Vietnam War veteran examines the new memorial in Rockville.  PHOTO BY SUZANNE POLLAKA Vietnam War veteran examines the new memorial in Rockville.           PHOTO BY SUZANNE POLLAK  ROCKVILLE — Several hundred people, many of whom wavered between saluting and wiping tears from their eyes, watched solemnly as Montgomery County’s Vietnam Veterans Memorial wall was unveiled Monday afternoon.

The wall, located on Memorial Plaza in Rockville, features the names of the 130 County residents who were killed or reported missing in action during the Vietnam War.

During the afternoon ceremony, each of the 130 names was read aloud, followed by one single strike on a bell.

Just like at the Vietnam War Memorial in Washington, D.C., relatives and friends will be able to see their loved ones’ names and make rubbings for mementos. Also like at the national memorial, several relatives placed bouquets of roses near their loved ones’ names.

“Every time I come over here, I’ll see and remember others who I served with who didn’t come back,” said Stan Seidel, who fought in Vietnam in 1968. He was one of many veterans attending the ceremony, who wore their hats, uniforms, and honors with pride.

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Annual 9/11 Golf Tournament scheduled at Laytonsville course

  • Published in Sports

Todd ReubenTodd Reuben is among the victims honored at the 9/11 Memorial Golf Outing in Laytonsville.  COURTESY PHOTO  It’s been 16 years since the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, 2001 wreaked havoc on our nation but a local attorney has found a way to help ease the pain.

On Monday, the fifth annual 9/11 Memorial Golf Outing will be held at Laytonsville Golf Course thanks in large part to the efforts of David Grover.

The event honors the memory of 9/11 victims who died when airliners hijacked by members of the terrorist group al-Qaeda were crashed into the World Trade Center complex in New York City, N.Y., the Pentagon in Arlington, Va., and a field near Shanksville, Penn.

Todd Reuben, a Churchill High School graduate, was one of the passengers aboard the hijacked plane that struck the Pentagon. He was 40 years old when he left behind a family that included his wife Vivian and twin sons Jason and Jeffrey.

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We lost a Washington Monument with the passing of Jim Vance

Brandy Simms Jim VanceLegendary WRC-TV news anchor Jim Vance lost his battle with cancer on Saturday. He was 75.
He was an icon, trailblazer, pioneer and a D.C. legend.
He influenced generations of broadcasters both local and national.
Magruder graduate and former Channel 4 sportscaster Dan Hellie shared the news desk with Vance before he left D.C. for the NFL Network in 2013.
“Sitting on the desk w/ Jim Vance is one of the great honors of my career,” Hellie posted on Twitter. “Genuine, loyal & smooth. A D.C. Treasure. Much love. RIP Vance.”

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Eight years after Metro crash, families start to ‘grieve healthy’

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MPI LegMem 0009 bRaja Williams (left) and Ava DeBose, children of crash victim Veronica DuBose, stand by the memorial dedicated to their mother in Legacy Memorial Park. PHOTO BY MARK POETKER  The last thing Victor Fernandez told his mom, Ana, was “I love you,” and she said it back. The last thing Sergio Fernandez did was hug his mom, and she kissed him on the forehead.

Shortly thereafter, Ana Fernandez died in Metrorail’s catastrophic 2009 Red Line crash that took nine lives.

The accident’s eighth anniversary was recognized June 22 at Legacy Memorial Park on New Hampshire Avenue in Northeast D.C., just above the tracks where it happened. The families and friends of three of the deceased held an informal remembrance and prayed together.

Sergio, who’s now 18 and just graduated from Northwood High School in Silver Spring, said it’s been hard growing up without his mother, “But you gotta move on. You have to grow up.” Victor, 20, who graduated from Northwood last year, said, “We do everything in honor of her, like she was here.”

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Wootton bridge renamed after late HS principal

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Doran Memorial Bridge 2Samuel Doran and wife Kathy Lavindor Doran unveil the sign renaming the Wootton Parkway Bridge after his late father, Wootton High School principal Michael J. Doran.                   PHOTO BY SUZANNE POLLAKThe Wootton Parkway Bridge leading to Wootton High School was renamed June 1 in memory of Principal Michael J. Doran, who believed in building bridges between the Rockville school and its many communities, according to those gathered outside at the dedication.

Doran, who died two years ago, had been principal at Wootton for 12 years.

Naming the bridge for his father is a fitting tribute as Doran believed “education is a bridge to a better life,” said his son, Samuel Doran.

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Remembering friends lost through a mutual love

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Jacob DennisJacob Dennis. COURTESY PHOTO 

CLARKSBURG – High school student Jacob Dennis could have chosen a brand-new car, but instead he wanted a truck the same make and model that his father drove at 18 years old.

The two of them restored the 1989 Ford truck, painted it black and added a Maryland flag to the tailgate.

On June 8, Dennis and teammates Patrick Shifflett and Cary Greene, also juniors, were in the flag-emblazoned, black truck driving in Damascus when it hit a tree.

At the school Saturday, more than 100 people attended the Jacob Dennis Foundation Car Show. Proceeds would go to the foundation, which will award $2,500 scholarships to three seniors this year, mother Trina Dennis said.

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Solving the mystery of the John Brown bridge

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Drivers in Rockville are struggling to find out more about Margaret S. Fletcher, her death at age 25, and why her gravestone is at the corner of Rockville Pike and Edmonston Drive.

The tombstone, until recently, was part of the John C. Brown Bridge. This bridge in Rockville is dedicated to the memory of the first Maryland man killed in the Korean War.

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