Archive | June, 2014

Lady Bugs brings high visibility and service to La Habra

Posted on 26 June 2014 by La Habra Journal

By John McMurray
For the La Habra Journal

You’ve seen them in the community, the red cars with black spots on them.  Maybe you’ve seen the “ladybug woman” at a community event.  Maybe you’ve seen both.

Bug busters: Kim Praster and Diego Hernandez of Lady Bugs pest control stand in front of  their decorated vehicles that can be seen around the community,

Bug busters: Kim Praster and Diego Hernandez of Lady Bugs pest control stand in front of their decorated vehicles that can be seen around the community,

Regardless of what it was, you have seen Lady Bugs pest control throughout La Habra.
Based in La Habra since it opened in 2010, Lady Bugs offers its Integrated Pest Management service to businesses and homeowners in La Habra and neighboring communities.
Owner Diego Hernandez said his crews can take care of any problems, from the raccoon in the attic to the dry rot under the house.
From the very beginning, Hernandez and his team knew he wanted his business to be seen. So,  Lady Bugs has used bright red VW beetles painted up as—what else? lady bugs—as rolling billboards for the company.
“It was a natural,” Hernandez said. “We painted the first beetle up to look like a lady bug and drove it around town, just to test the idea. People just instantly made the connection, and we were getting calls before we were even open.”
Lady Bugs offers services that cover everything from live animal trapping (the animals are treated humanely before they are released) to environmentally friendly termite control.
This means also human friendly controls.
“We don’t rely much on tents or super chemicals. Those are relics from the past,” Hernandez said. “In this day and age, most of the time we can get rid of the pests without taking the risk of making the people who live or work in the buildings sick.”
Hernandez explained his crews are all highly trained and certified to handle the materials they use.
“It only makes good sense to have the best people with the best training,” he added. “All our crews are certified by the county and state agricultural departments. Our company is bonded, licensed, and insured. These departments inspect us at random times, so we have to be on our toes all the time, and have everything current. It’s really in everybody’s best interests.”
In addition to its five field technicians, Lady Bugs employs five people in the office to make sure everything is coordinated and runs smoothly.
Asked why he chose to locate in La Habra, Hernandez says it was an easy choice.
“I’m from here,” he explained. “I grew up when this area was orchards and small farms. La Habra has a small-town attitude, and that’s in a good sense. People know each other and look out for each other. If a business treats its customers well, they tell their friends. You can’t buy references like that; you have to earn them.”
As a company, Lady Bugs is very involved in the community. The employees are active in the La Habra Area and Whittier Chambers of Commerce, La Habra Lions, and Elks Clubs.
They also help with Hope for a Cure, Operation Santa, Meals on Wheels, and other non-profit groups.
In reads to future expansion, Hernandez said they do, but not to more locations.
“We need to add some people,” he said, “We do plan to diversify a little; we’re thinking about opening a store front, where customers can walk in and get materials and advice they can use.”
Whatever the future expansion may be for Lady Bugs, there is no doubt that Hernandez and his team will continue to be an active and visible part of the La Habra community.

Jay Seidel contributed to this article

Lady Bugs Environmental
Termite & Pest Control
120 E. La Habra Blvd., #103A
La Habra, CA 90631-2308

Phone
(855) 4LADYBUGS
(855) 452-3928
(800) 423-3396
(562) 691-6677

E-Mail
info@ladybugsinc.net

FAX
(562) 691-6697

 www.LadyBugsInc.net

Facebook:
www.facebook.com/LadyBugsTPC

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Cars fill The Park for Pet Prescription Team

Posted on 16 June 2014 by La Habra Journal

By Daniel Hernandez
La Habra Journal

At the Pet Prescription Team’s annual car show on May 31, dogs barked, cars roared and the community, including a young girl with a rare disease, entered into a time warp at the sight of vintage automobiles.

Giving back: Safeco Insurance donated a check for $13,500 to Pet Prescription Team to help the nonprofit organization continue its mission to train pets to become certified therapy dogs.

Giving back: Safeco Insurance donated a check for $13,500 to Pet Prescription Team to help the nonprofit organization continue its mission to train pets to become certified therapy dogs.

The team, in their red shirts with dogs in tow, hosted 107 vehicles at The Park in La Habra Heights during its fifth annual car show, which included barbecued burgers, discussions of old cars and plenty of lounging in shaded spots under trees. The event raised funds for the Pet Prescription Team, the La Habra Heights-based nonprofit group geared toward “touching people’s lives through pets.”
“I think everybody loves dogs,” car show collaborator and Pet Prescription Team member Phil Emery said about the large gathering to support the non-profit organization, which eases the tensions of the sick.
Isabella Apodaca, the young girl smiling ear to ear at the car show, was diagnosed at 6 with rhabdomyosarcoma, a rare form of cancer. At the event, she reunited with Bella, a Pet Prescription Team dog who visited her at the hospital over the course of the last year.

“The little girl has the heart of a fighter,” Pet Prescription Team volunteer Judy Caron said. “She has “an incredible, feisty spirit.”
People at the car show cheered for Apodaca when Krystal Emery described her cancer battle, and the girl did not shy away from attention as a crowd of people gathered to capture her photo.
Like the dogs of the Pet Prescription Team, the car show provided her with an escape from the real world.
The event is organized to raise funds for the Pet Prescription Team’s cause to help train family pets to be therapy animals.   The Team started 12 years ago through the mind of Emery’s wife, Krystal Emery, who found that dogs could lighten the lives of patients who desperately needed comfort.

Photo time: Claire Spothelfer, ex La Habra Heights mayor, and husband Paul Spothelfer group together with Phil Emery, car show organizer, in front of a 1953 Ford Police Interceptor, which was donated by CAP volunteers and Dorothy Dean Jackson. Paul and Claire helped build the gazebo at The Park in the 1980’s, which held its first concert in the park in 1989, according to Spothelfer.

Photo time: Claire Spothelfer, ex La Habra Heights mayor, and husband Paul Spothelfer group together with Phil Emery, car show organizer, in front of a 1953 Ford Police Interceptor, which was donated by CAP volunteers and Dorothy Dean Jackson. Paul and Claire helped build the gazebo at The Park in the 1980’s, which held its first concert in the park in 1989, according to Spothelfer.

Events like the car show provide the non-profit with funds to keep the organization going.
Emery stated that money from the event will be used to perk up the non-profit’s ability to help people, buying things like stuffed puppies and special books.
Along with funds raised from the car show, Safeco Insurance presented a $13,500 check to the dog-loving organization in reward for a 21-day online contest. The Pet Prescription Team garnered more votes than 30 other non-profits, including major groups like Habitat for Humanity.
Emery touts social networking and the organization’s online presence as a major factor in the group’s success in the contest. He also is quick to point out that communities love dogs, also a reason for the big gathering at the car show.
La Habra Heights Councilman Roy Francis and wife Judy at the gathering sported their 1928, dark red, all-steel Ford Sedan Delivery — a car with 47 years of restoration behind it. Francis bought the vehicle in pieces before he left to fight the war in Vietnam in 1966.
Last year the ex-mayor won the best of show award at this event.
Other automobile enthusiasts with leashes attached to their dogs hid from the sun, read books and made sure their vintage prized possessions were flawless for people to admire.
Jim Ellis, a Whittier resident and “a guy who likes cars,” polished his 1964 Sport Fury to make sure all the blemishes were touched up. This is Ellis’ fourth year coming to the event.
Bob Harrison, a 12-year La Habra Heights resident, scoured pages in a book he was studying with his dog Jake, who rested his snout on the grass next to his deep red 1933 Chevy.
“It’s just an old little hot rod,” Harrison, who has attended every one of these events at The Park, said about the car that he bought restored some years ago.

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Children’s museum holds mini health fair

Posted on 12 June 2014 by La Habra Journal

By Jay Seidel
La Habra Journal

Hundreds of children filled Porlola Park just outside of the Childrens’ Museum Tuesday. What they learned was to be active, the importance of making healthy choices and took part in a number of family-centered activities. _MG_0743
The Children’s Museum at La Habra has partnered with the La Habra Community Collaborative and UC Davis as part of the Let’s Move Campaign.
According to the museum, the concept is to take the fun outside this summer with mini-circuit training for your kids and nutrition workshops for parents too.
According to the Centers for Disease Control, “Childhood obesity has more than doubled in children and quadrupled in adolescents in the past 30 years.”
This program is a way to teach children how to combat that.
Tuesday’s free program included a sneak peek at fitness and activities for children to move and stay active, as well as an array of health screenings including Body Mass Index and nutritional counseling._MG_0735
The program continues with Eating healthy workshops and kids circuit training Tuesdays starting June 17. There is also Fitness Fridays, which is family workouts starting June 20. Call (562) 383-4236 for more info.

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LHHS graduate becomes first accepted into CSUF nursing

Posted on 12 June 2014 by La Habra Journal

By Chu-Ling Yee
La Habra Journal

After she watched her grandmother become affected by Diabetes, she knew she wanted to become a nurse. As the years went by, she never stopped trying to reach her goals. Vanessa Martinez is the first high school student to be accepted into the California State University of Fullerton under the Advancing Health Equity and Diversity, AHEAD program, a partnership between the university and La Habra High School to help students enter the medical field.

Photo courtesy Vicky Eaglson Future nurse: Vanessa Martinez (right) poses with her mother when she was presented with the recognition of being the First student from La Habra to enter the AHEAD nursing program with Cal State Fullerton.

Photo courtesy Vicky Eaglson
Future nurse: Vanessa Martinez (right) poses with her mother when she was presented with the recognition of being the First student from La Habra to enter the AHEAD nursing program with Cal State Fullerton.

The AHEAD program helps educate and encourage young students to learn more about nursing. As part of the program, the Future Nurses Club was formed at the high school. Students learn the basics of health care and how one can improve theirs and their families’ health.
The program brings awareness to the community health issues by addressing social determinants. Social determinants are conditions that influence the individuals and group’s health. By educating the student about health care, they can reduce and prevent diseases by spreading the word.
The idea of the program came after Maria Matza, Cal State Fullerton professor, and Vicky Eaglson, La Habra High counselor, sat next to each other at a La Habra Collaborative meeting and began a conversation about helping high school students achieve. They then asked another colleague to help.
Dr. Christine Latham, professor of nursing at Cal State University of Fullerton, submitted a grant to the United States Department of Health and Human Services and Health Resources Service Administration, requesting to help prepare high school students for the medical field. The noncompetitive trainee-funding grant gives 1.05 million over the course of three years. The program began last July, which is focusing on nursing diversity too. They plan to better prepare under-represented high school students for careers in nursing.
As part of the collaboration between the university and La Habra High School, a maximum of five students in the program can be admitted to Cal State Fullerton’s nursing program.
Students participating in the program are not guaranteed admissions. The admissions office at the school will make the final choice on who gets admittance based on an evaluation of students’ grades and their achievements.
Martinez, 18, will be the first in her family to attend a four-year university. She is unsure about which specialty she will enter but is considering going into pediatrics. She loves working with children. The young adult currently volunteers at Our Lady of Guadalupe Church and La Habra Public Library.
“I’m excited to be able to start right away and not procrastinate,” Martinez explained. “I’m nervous for all the challenges, but also excited to take them too.”
Cal State Fullerton currently is no longer admitting freshmen as pre-nursing majors.  Students will now  be admitted as nursing. “By allowing them to come in their freshmen year, I think it takes away the stress and it also spreads our program out in four years instead of two years,” Dr. Latham said.
Martinez has been studying and working hard to get into the school. “This is for motivated individuals and Vanessa is one of that,” Eaglson said.
The club participants meet once every month. Students are given scrubs to wear with the logo, “Ahead” on them. This year, the grant paid for field trips and paid for 30 students to take the SAT’s. Those in the club learned how to obtain individual’s blood pressure and learned about proper hygiene etiquette.
“We’re really excited about what this could mean. There are no limits, ” Eaglson stated. They plan to expand and start parenting classes in the fall for parents and adolescents to be able to communicate better with each other.
“We have to own it. We have to do it,” she said.  Students are not only the ones paving a way for their futures but for the entire community’s as well by being part of the program and learning more about preventing illnesses.
“I’m so thankful for having this opportunity to be able go to Cal State Fullerton,” said Martinez excitedly. “I’m thankful for this grant that we got and I’m pretty sure this will help others too in the future.”

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LH Rotary recognizes two amazing grads

Posted on 12 June 2014 by La Habra Journal

By Jane Williams
La Habra Journal

The La Habra Rotary Club recognizes students each month for various reasons.  Last month the club recognized two students who overcame challenges and adversity to be able to graduate at this years Class of 2014.  This is a look at their two stories.

Erick Salazar
When La Habra High’s Class of 2014 marched into the stadium for graduation, there were a number of graduates with amazing accomplishments in academics, athletics and fine arts.

Highlander grad: Erick Salazar overcame many challenges to graduate from La Habra High School.  He was recently recognized by the La Habra Rotary Club for his determination in attaining his diploma.

Highlander grad: Erick Salazar overcame many challenges to graduate from La Habra High School. He was recently recognized by the La Habra Rotary Club for his determination in attaining his diploma.

And then there was one marcher for whom it took a miracle and great determination to overcome many obstacles laid in his path.
Born in Arizona, Erick Salazar and his family moved to California right before he started first grade in West Covina and then moved several more times around Whittier where Erick attended Orchardale for fourth through eighth grades. Then they moved to La Habra and he began at La Habra High School as a freshman where he knew no one, fell in with a crowd and, as he says, “did my thing.”
Meanwhile that summer his father was arrested and sent to prison, and his mother was working hard to support the family.
“Dad had not been supporting us, and it was really hard on my mom,” Erick said. “She worked from nine in the morning until after six at night. I couldn’t stay focused and worried  a lot.”  His mom eventually began working two shifts at Kaiser, as a scheduling nurse and a pediatric nurse, starting at 4 a.m.
He fell behind in school, was placed in Opportunity classes and eventually went to La Vista High School in Fullerton. It was while he was there in legal and law class that he had a serious fainting episode.  The doctor he saw told Erick and his mother that it was just his body changing.
Erick decided he wanted to graduate from what he considers an “official” high school. He had accumulated enough credits by taking six classes. At the same time he had another fainting episode while taking photographs in a mosh pit. Once again, his mother took him to the hospital and once again, the doctors couldn’t find anything wrong.
He kept up his schoolwork and got a part-time job to help his mom out.
“My mom always coddled me. She’s the biggest support of my life and let me know what was important every night at dinner when she asked ‘What did you learn today?’”
Right before Erick’s junior year, the family was getting set to move again and his mother got a job at Kaiser. She would wake up at 2:30 a.m., and from 4-8 a.m. she worked as a Kaiser schedule nurse, and then from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. she worked as a pediatric nurse.
Erick explained that he got a part-time job because he wanted “to help mom so she doesn’t have to work so hard. She works so much.” His father got out of prison on his mother’s birthday. They never married but had been together for 20 years after meeting each other  in high school.
By his senior year, Erick had made up enough classes and accumulated enough credits to return to La Habra High. That was after Mr. Ide got him interested in computers and video, and other teachers encouraged his interest in history.
“Teachers are there not to just teach, but to help you when you need it and provide support when you need it,” said Erick. “A lot of students go through tons of pain.  I learned you can’t stop pain, but you don’t have to let pain stop you. I know the struggle kids may be going through and keeping to themselves.”
Right before he turned 18, Erick had yet another fainting episode. This time, the doctors were able to diagnose what was wrong.  It was supraventricular tachycardia, an extremely rapid heart rhythm of the upper heart chambers. The diagnosis was reached after running two catheters up veins in his leg to his heart and observing what was happening. It is a condition that can be managed with the proper care, which he now is receiving.
Through it all, Erick never lost sight of his desire to graduate from an “official high school.”  So on May 27, with around 600 of his fellow classmates, he did just that. Despite changing schools often, his father going to prison, having a serious medical condition, his mom working so much to support the family. And that is the miracle.

Belen Mora
The crashing economy affects not just the parents of students, but the students themselves. Sometimes those students don’t recognize how large the hole they are digging for themselves. Belen Mora is one of those.

Ready for the next step: Sonora’s Belen Mora was committed to return to graduate from Sonora and graduate from the same school her sister did.  She was recognized by the LH Rotary for her motivation.

Ready for the next step: Sonora’s Belen Mora was committed to return to graduate from Sonora and graduate from the same school her sister did. She was recognized by the LH Rotary for her motivation.

She was born in Anaheim. Eight years or so ago, her sister graduated from Sonora High, but after that, the family bought a house in Victorville.  There, Belen had family and made friends.
“It was very different there,” she said. “Over there more people speak Spanish at home, and it’s just more of a small town.”
Belen loved it. Just before she was to enter high school, her family lost their house like many others all over the country. And like many other families, they returned to La Habra where they had family who could help them start over.
Belen enrolled at Sonora, but many of her habits from Victorville stuck. Sometimes she went to school, sometimes she didn’t. Sometimes she did the homework, more often she didn’t. At the end of the year, it was time for a reality check. She had barely one half of the credits she needed. She was advised to enroll at La Vista.
“I had to make up a lot, plus take the higher level courses. Many of the students don’t recover from being far behind or get motivated. I always wanted to graduate from Sonora since my sister did. In fact, I could have stayed at La Vista and graduated early,” Belen explained.
By the middle of her junior year, Belen had made up all her missing credits and courses and was on track to graduate. And yes, she could return to Sonora High. Just like her sister. On May 28, she and the other members of Sonora’s Class of 2014 became Raider alumni. Belen hopes to attend college and major in criminal justice.
Asked what she would tell any incoming high school freshman, she immediately said, “Make sure you’re on track. If you don’t, you’ll regret it later.”

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Helping spread smiles around the world

Posted on 12 June 2014 by La Habra Journal

By Chu-Ling Yee
La Habra Journal

Dr. Douglas Daniels, DDS, believes that there is nothing greater than giving to others, and when he was asked to help in the South Pacific, he immediately said yes.

Photos courtesy  Dr. Daniels office  Open wide: Dr. Douglas Daniels of La Habra helps residents of Fiji as part of a volunteer group to lend their dental skills to this in the South Pacific.

Photos courtesy Dr. Daniels office
Open wide: Dr. Douglas Daniels of La Habra helps residents of Fiji as part of a volunteer group to lend their dental skills to this in the South Pacific.

He temporarily closed his dental practice, Daniels Dental Care in La Habra, leaving the country in February and March to help others at the Mission in Natuvu Creek on the island of Savusavu, Fuji.
Daniels volunteered to perform oral surgeries, examinations of the islanders’ teeth and gums, and provide information to the residents about oral health. All of this was free of charge.
Last year, Fiji-based Dr. Marta Tooma, a dentist, and her husband Dr. Tom, an ophthalmologist, asked Daniels to volunteer at the Mission at Natuvu Creek, which they founded in 2008. In 1985, he envisioned himself helping others, particularly in the South Pacific, and so going to the Mission in Natuvu Creek was his dream coming true, he said.
Daniels traveled with two other dentists, one doctor and 16 students from Pepperdine University to the island. The students, who majored in a medical or dental field, were given the chance to further their education by assisting the specialists. Medical doctors, dentists and ophthalmologists who all volunteered their time at the facility. The facility provides medical, dental and optometry services as well as hearing aids.

Ensuring smiles: Dr. Douglas Daniels (top left) is part of a volunteer group of dental and medical professionals travels each year to the South Pacific islands to help locals with their dental needs.

Ensuring smiles: Dr. Douglas Daniels (top left) is part of a volunteer group of dental and medical professionals travels each year to the South Pacific islands to help locals with their dental needs.

His staff was very supportive when he decided to close his practice and go. He paid for the trip and brought some of his dental supplies with him. Daniels viewed the trip as a way of helping the local islanders receive the help they needed.
“Patients are more than a set of teeth,” Daniels said. “Each patient is a human being consisting of mental, physical, and spiritual needs.”
Each morning, he started work at 7:30 a.m. and worked until he finished providing medical services to the last patient.  While there, he performed several hundred tooth extractions. Many of the islanders walked or traveled six hours in the rain, arriving by boat from nearby islands.
During his duration at the facility, it rained heavily, as it was typhoon season.
“I never really was able to dry off and all my clothes eventually became wet and moldy,” Daniels stated.
When the sun did shine, it was hot and humid. By the end of each day, he looked forward to swimming in the 80-degree ocean water. Daniels said he would gladly make the same decision to go on this trip again, even knowing that the weather would be at times unpleasant.
Daniels never hesitates to help those who do not have access to dentists. He has provided services to the Yamomami Head Hunters in the Amazon, the Oaxaca Indians of Mexico and to Jamaicans. IMG_1431
He credits his training at Oral Roberts University School of Dentistry in 1985 with helping him prepare to help in remote parts of the world. He has learned that giving is more precious than anything and no matter where he is, he hopes to continue to help in any way possible.
“I feel it is my duty to give back to society… a gift that I have been blessed with.”

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