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Valley People (March 22, 2023)


Memorial for Bob O’Connell: April 2

Please join family and friends to remember and celebrate the life of Bob O'Connell. 

We'll be gathering on Pomo Tierra (at the main house) on April 2nd, 2023. Memorial at 2pm (come as early as noon). Potluck meal ~4:30pm

We hope to share stories and memories of Bob and celebrate the life he lived with the people that he loved and we welcome you to share this invite and forward to anyone that you think would like to be there.

For questions or to coordinate dishes for the potluck, please email me at

With love and appreciation,

Sean and the O'Connell family

LAST TUESDAY’S atmospheric river didn't live up to its hype, at least in this area. There was rain a bunch, enough to close 128 as the Navarro spilled its banks at the usual places about 2pm. There was very little wind, at least here in the bucolic Anderson Valley. We’ve heard that the County’s northcoast got hit harder, however.

HAPPY TO HEAR news of Tom Cronquist, long-time anchor for central Boonville. He and the late Arlene Toohey were a familiar sight in early morning Boonville tidying up after the previous evening's hijinks. A veteran of the Navy assigned to the Marines as a medic during the toughest years of the Vietnam War, doctors are certain Tom's Parkinson's was brought on by Agent Orange. Tom's in a special Agent Orange unit at the VA Hospital in San Francisco from where he's able to keep in touch with his many local friends who report he's doing well considering the severity of his affliction.

UNHAPPY to hear that Ricky Adams is pretty much confined to his Boonville home these days while the medical people puzzle out what's hurting him. Ricky’s been “stove up,” as the old loggers say. Also an early morning guy, I miss seeing Ricky at the Redwood Drive-In, as punctual as sunrise. 

ERNIE PARDINI REPORTS that Monte Hulbert is alive and well: “I've seen him twice in the last couple of weeks. Aside from looking a little older, he looked none the worse for wear.” A Philo resident said they spoke to Monte recently and he seems to be doing just fine.

BOONVILLE HOTEL PROPRIETOR JOHNNY SCHMITT comments on David Gowan’s facebook post pic of an early Boonville Hotel:

Schmitt: Thanks. Good find. We have this picture framed somewhere. My cousin PJ ran across it years ago and gave it to us. At one point when I was still cooking my duck order from Petaluma never showed up and in tracking it, it had ended up here in Missouri, I hope they enjoyed it!

HENRY BECKER: Hello to all of my Anderson Valley peeps! I have a question…. Does anyone have contact with or know what ever became of John Love, class of 1972. He was a great guitar player and singer. I talk to Angelo Mauceri once in a while and we both wonder what ever became of him. Just curious I guess.

ANDREA GARCIA: “AVES Bullying has been a reoccurring issue with my 4th grader since the fourth day of the 2021/2022 school year. Since then, I have been at the school, on the phone, or in a lengthy email thread with the Principal and Superintendent at least once a week. I will not go into detail about last year’s bullying incidents because it will take up the entire feed however, I will say that at any point my student said or did anything back (i.e. stood up for himself), he took full responsibility and was held accountable for his actions. The first several incidents, the Principal tried her best, but it only continued. A couple weeks before the 2021/2022 school year ended, we met with the Superintendent and Principal (not the first time) to address bullying and gang issues. We were laughed at to our faces. Until the local little “thugs” decided to tag up the school last summer I had yet to see the words, “bullying” and “gangs” mentioned in the district update emails.

This school year has not been as bad since some of the students moved to higher grades, however there are still a handful of students, and I regret to say, a few staff members, that have either bullied, disrespected, or been incredibly rude to my 4th grader. I cannot vouch for others, however if it is happening to my student, odds are, it is happening to others as well.

These kids do not care, nor do they respect school policies. They do not care about their education, phone calls to their parent, sitting on the bench, being sent to the Principal’s office, and one-two day suspensions. We took it among ourselves to reach out to the parents of one of these students, which helped to an extent. The school may be reaching out to the community/parents for help, but it may be that the only solution is policy change (longer suspensions, expelling, etc.). We can't wait until a student gets severely hurt or we have something similar to the Santa Rosa High School incident, occur.”

IT'S HARD ENOUGH to raise children in a country where aberrant behavior is not only tolerated but celebrated, but imagine the heart-in-mouth anxiety of parents who fear that their children may not be safe at school. The  local upside is that we have two smart, capable, conscientious school administrators who definitely won't tolerate bullying, and have moved to stop it almost the hour(s) it has occurred.

SINCE BULLYING AND RACE can't be mentioned in the same sentence in these sensitive times without ethnic demagogues screaming themselves to sleep, nevertheless let's state plainly that the bullying episodes at Boonville Elementary involve little Mexican kids hassling little white kids, the hasslers apparently motivated by the depraved gang examples they see in media. It can't and won't be tolerated, just as it wouldn't be tolerated if white bullies were pushing Mexican kids around.


Invasive species removal was canceled for Saturday (3/18 because the Day use in Hendy Woods State Park is currently closed due to flooding and with more rain in the forecast we canceled the invasive species removal. Fingers crossed for the next one - Saturday April 22nd - we will keep you posted! Thank you for your continued support!

Anica Williams, Hendy Woods Community

NO ROUNDABOUT? My colleague, The Major, shuffling to the Boonville Post Office Monday afternoon, asked a two-person CalTrans survey crew if they were puzzling out property lines for a proposed roundabout. The young woman half of the team replied, “No. We're doing sidewalks. Anyway, where would we put roundabouts?” 

SIDEWALKS? It's possible that Big Orange has different survey teams for different projects, but exciting as sidewalks for Boonville might be, I'd be more excited about roundabouts, three of them the dimensions of the roundabout in Healdsburg at 253 and 128; Lambert Lane and 128; and Mountain View Road and 128, all of which would work to make Boonville feel more like a town and slow through traffic.

SAFFRON BLUE FRASER: I am not opposed to roundabouts. I kinda think they might bring a downtowny feel, maybe. Especially with lights, and maybe some hanging baskets of flowers. But they ain't gonna do nothing for the rest of 128. Remember when they put those speed signs up in Philo and it became a challenge to hit 100 entering town, and how many accidents that caused? Or when they removed the crosswalk after that fatal accident?

FOR MORE INFORMATION see Valerie Hanelt’s letter in this week’s letters section.

PHILO’S ROBBIE LANE: After a yearlong struggle to get a decent drug education/harm reduction plan implemented in our local school, I’ve now been asked to put on an assembly and talk to the kids about my own past issues, and those of my contemporaries. Most of whom are deceased or incarcerated. I was lucky to have walked through the fire and came out a better, stronger man as a result. At this point I’ll be flying solo. What I ask is that if there are any compassionate survivors of the life around the Valley to please lend a hand and help me talk to these kids. The lives we save may be your children, nieces and nephews, neighbors, etc., etc. If you’ve got the stones for it, by all means let me know. I’m doing everything possible on my own. I could use a hand or two!

ON THE SUBJECT of jabrones, a reader notes: The Boont term for jabroni is deejer. (Have never been real clear on the spelling.) The word got a lot of use in my household to describe those who were jerks, creeps, nasty. When my daughter went off to college and used the word deejer she was surprised to discover it wasn't standard English in use everywhere. Her friends all learned at least one Boontling word! Plenty of use for it still!

HOLA, JABRONES! Our Spanish language consultant, Ms. Silva-Pena, said she was unfamiliar with the term jabrone, or jabroni, which, according to Google is a noun meaning a stupid, foolish, or contemptible person; loser, as in, “She always has a comeback to own the trolls and jabronis on Twitter.”

WE DEAL with a lot of jabrones in the newspaper business, and truth to tell, like a lot of Spanish insults, I like the sound of it,   the euphoniousness of it, with the added benefit that few gringos know what it means.


Enjoy this little bit of sunshine!

We have lots of new organic and non-organic veggies, herbs and flowers! Broccoli, Cauliflower, Lettuce, Peas. Tomatoes, Peppers, Basil, Cilantro. Thyme, Chamomile, Lavender. Strawberries and much much more!


Do you have yard tools, harvesting tools, and butchering knives that need sharpening? 

Contact: Scott Miller Mobile Sharpening

Knives, Pruners, Scissors

Call us and we will come to you.

(707) 272-7274 /

408 West Mill St. Ukiah CA 95482

I'M SURPRISED everyday people still deposit their modest savings in banks at almost zero interest. I guess a bank is marginally more secure than your mattress, but still. I'm reminded of my late friend Ern Waggoner, patriarch of the famous Boonville sports family, who told me once he'd never put another dime in any bank after he'd lost what little he had when his hometown bank in Arkansas evaporated during The Great Depression along with Ern's savings. Ern kept his cash in his wallet from then on, a stash so large he wired it closed. Also, like a lot of Boonville's Depression Arkys, Ern was a heck of a gardener, so shaken in his youth by the economic collapse, he was always ready for a repeat. (Which may have begun as we meet here on a glorious post-storm March day.)

LOCAL GARDEN STARTS from Natural Products of Boonville. I will be custom-growing garden starts for people who contact me and pre-order them. Anyone with interest in garden starts or seed tubers should email me at

DAVE EVANS at the Navarro Store was rightly disturbed by a letter from the State Office of Tourism, replete with a lot of official-sounding language. “Beginning in June/2023, Navarro General Store received correspondence that explained how to fulfill Tourism Assessment Program requirements….. as mandated by the California Tourism Marketing Act, Government Code Section 13995.” Because Dave didn’t get with this fake program he owes “$19,641.58.” including “late fees, administration fees and segment max.” The crooks issuing this scam have even had the nerve to call the store demanding Dave cough up!

SKUNK DEODORIZATION From a trusted dog groomer:

One quart Hydrogen Peroxide

Half cup baking soda

1-2 Tablespoons dog shampoo (don’t use dish washing detergent, it’s too harsh)

Mix in a gallon of water

Don’t wet the dog first. Use the shampoo mixture directly on the sprayed areas. Unfortunately, most dogs get sprayed right in the face and obviously you need to be VERY careful not to let this mix get in your dog’s eyes. Try soaking a washcloth with the shampoo mixture to wipe the face thoroughly. Do the best you can and let it sit on the dog a good 10-15 minutes. Always, always condition afterwards. Most likely there will be a bit of a lingering odor but it will be much better.

I'M NOT THE ONLY person wondering why all that oak and madrone cleared from both sides of 128 from Cloverdale to Boonville can't be at least partially set aside for locals who depend on wood heat. Nope, all being fed into the big chipper.

THAT DOG WASH at the very cool farm supply on Highway 20 just east of Fort Bragg is an idea whose time has come. Everything you need to machine wash ol' Rover for only ten bucks. I wonder if car washes could be modified to speed-clean grubby little kids. Give 'em a pool mask and walk them on through. Maybe make it mandatory for certain adults.


I’ve decided to incorporate my old shop into my new shop, and offer my tea and gift shop as a clothing consignment as well, simply because I feel like the valley really needs this! So I’ll be getting a clothing rack and anyone who is interested can bring in their used or vintage clothing for me to consider. You get paid a percentage when it sells! Let’s do this! I’ll be at my shop in the John Hanes Art Gallery in Boonville Friday through Sunday, 11 am to 3 pm. show me what you’ve got! 


Heron and I are excited to open for the season. Here is our Craigslist ad. Thanks for the last 21 years of support at the same location. Open Saturday and Sunday 10am to 4pm. All the best, Sam and Heron

Sam Gitchel <>

CATFISH JACK CHAUVIN'S HEALING JOURNEY FUND (popular local musician fighting cancer)

Catfish Jack Chauvin was recently diagnosed with cancer. A beloved music teacher, performer, father, and friend, he has touched the lives of people of all ages. Jack has been teaching people how to connect through music for the last 25 years. He is as passionate about mentoring young adults as he is when performing Blues harmonica. Most importantly, he is always giving back and serving his community. He works with teens who struggle in their personal and academic lives, creating an environment for them to be present in expressive art therapy.

Jack Chauvin is in the early stages of rectal cancer, and will begin chemo-therapy and radiation appointments at the end of March. He is looking at probably a year of treatments and recovery, and he is also facing the possibility of surgery during treatment. We are seeking funds to cover the cost of his monthly rent and bills, to help defrays the cost of the treatments, and to help with other modalities that support healing. Getting these funding needs covered will allow him to focus on his recovery.

Catfish Jack lights up the world with every note he breathes. Help us give back to him, and please share this page.

Love and blessings.

Jack's community of friends

p.s. Jack is incredibly grateful for all the support from everyone!

FOUND WANDERING around at Anderson Valley Brewing Company with a group of disc golfers… 


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