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Valley People (July 19, 2023)

TRAGIC ACCIDENT Claims The Life Of Boonville Resident Arthur Hobbs IV; One Dog Retrieved At Scene, Second Dog Located After The Accident; Gofundme Set Up To Help With Expenses

GoFundMe message: “Trying to get some money together so we can get my uncle cremated and have a celebration of life for him. His name was Arthur Hobbs, he lived in Boonville. He was a very special person to all of us and deserves to be celebrated. He was always doing for others and we need help doing this one last thing for him."

News Article:


FROM THE CHP: On July 15, 2023, at approximately 1010 hours, Fort Bragg resident post officers were dispatched to a fatal traffic crash involving a vehicle down an embankment and into a tree located near 40400 Mountain View Road east of State Route 1, in an unincorporated portion of Mendocino County. The driver was the sole occupant of a 2001 Ford F-150 pickup truck driving westbound on Mountain View Road, east of State Route 1 at an unknown speed. The Ford drove off the south roadway edge, struck a tree, and overturned down an embankment. The driver was pronounced deceased on scene at approximately 1058 hours. The crash is still under investigation, and it is unknown at this time if impairment is suspected.

NEXT BOONVILLE QUIZ IS THIS THURSDAY: Thursday, July 20. The popular local quiz returns to Lauren’s At the Buckhorn again this week. Activities begin at 7pm. Hope to see you there. Cheers, Steve Sparks, The Quizmaster

FREE JUNK CAR REMOVAL! No title, no problem. No job too big or too small. Give us a call 707-272-8101 or message us on Facebook! 

— Johnson & Son Junk Car Removal

We have served Mendocino County for 25 years providing junk car removal with our former business Starr Automotive Towing and Auto Repair in Philo, CA. We sold two years ago which allowed us to pursue our dreams of focusing on Junk Car removal. Our mission has always been to clear Mendocino County of Junk cars to do our part in keeping your community clean and these unwanted vehicles off public/private roads. Since starting our new business we have clean hundreds of vehicles surrounding Mendocino County. Those areas have included Point Arena, Gualala, Manchester, Albion, Philo, Navarro, Little River, Comptche, Ukiah, Fort Bragg, Mendocino, Cleone, Willits, Redwood Valley and my home town where I was born and raised in Boonville. (I’m sure I’m missing a few.) We not only offer removal of junk cars for residential areas, we offer junk car removal for businesses completely free as well. We stand by our word and will not surprise you with fees, when we say free, we mean free. We also specialize in removal of junk cars that are in challenging areas and have winch lines available for cars that are unable to roll. We currently do not offer removal of rvs, boats, and trailers. But please message us on these items, we can get you in contact with someone who may be able to help but does charge for their services. 

Cautions: When a junk car is scheduled for removal, the company you select should not have to remove parts off the vehicle. If this does happen and they want to return to pick up the vehicle later due to mechanical issues with their equipment please make sure to have any parts removed remain with the vehicle. 272-8101.

DO YOU NEED HELP creating defensible space? Do you know someone who does? Apply here for two full days of work to make your home a little more fire safe. If you need help with the application, give our office a call. 707 895-2020. Please share this information - The Defensible Space program is seriously underutilized, and we know there are folks out there who need help!

WHEN a young person dies in a public way as often happens in Mendocino County as it does everywhere in the United States, the grieving never seems to include the specific culpability of the other persons involved such as, for example, the person who gave the pretty young woman the drug that caused her to drop dead near the entrance to the Boonville Fairgrounds a few short weeks ago. The rumors say it was cocaine cut with fentanyl, and it was the fentanyl that killed her. Where did she get it? It's been almost a month but no announcement that this terrible death of a young woman still not 30 is being criminally investigated.

EVERY KID who ever lived doesn’t figure out until he’s about 30 that he isn’t bulletproof, that he can die, that his life, everyone’s lives, dangle from a very thin thread.

BILL BOGNER at Jack's Valley Store, commented the other day that he hasn't seen swallows “the last coupla years.” At Bill's mention, it occurred to me that I haven't seen any either, so I went out at dusk one evening last week specifically in search of the charming little winged creatures, dipping and soaring on their sundown rounds, so much a part of the natural vistas we so take their presence for granted we may not notice when they're gone. I spotted a few bats but no swallows. Readers? 

SAVE THE SWALLOWS: Gentleman George Hollister, a close observer of the natural world, reports on his swallows: "I had/have many swallows this year, more than I have had for quite a while. Bird boxes for BlueBirds have been partially occupied by Violet Green Swallows. I had a record number, for me, of them this year. For this year I had Violet Green Swallows, Cliff Swallows, Barn Swallows, and a pair of Purple Martins. Something to keep in mind, their population numbers depend on available food, and nesting spots. All these birds compete with each other for food, too. Swallows take food from the air, so don’t compete with Blue Birds that take food on the ground. They are all insect eaters, and good to have around. Yes, they do leave piles of poo. Get over it. Clean it up, and be happy for the insect control. My Swallows have been nesting here and at times traveling to other locations for food. In those other locations, they may go unnoticed."

GENTLEMAN GEORGE CONTINUED: Swallows, along with all living things are part of the food chain. Ravens eat young swallows, and so do Jays. A few years back the Swallow population around my house suddenly collapsed during nesting season. Baby Swallows were starving and dying. I walked outside one opportune moment, and witnessed a Sharp Shinned Hawk pickoff an adult Swallow as it left the nest on its way to hunt. The incident happened so quickly, with no sound to accompany it, that the Sharp Shinned Hawk could have been the one decimating the Swallow population, without notice, all along.

Ravens have an advantage by being generalists and very intelligent, they take advantage of the human environment. So do coyotes.

SARAH KENNEDY OWEN: "We had a family of swallows this year. They do nest in bluebird boxes. We usually get more than one family, and we get bluebirds and flycatchers too. I believe they are barn swallows."

BOONVILLE SCHOOL SUPE, Louise Simson, said that she has noticed that the traditional swallow nests at the north end of the Boonville gym “are still up there but they are not active.” 

SUSAN WALSH: Regarding the lack of swallows… My observation. I had swallow nests on my barn for a number of years. I have watched the ravens or crows or whatever they are destroy the nests to get the eggs and if that wasn’t successful they will perch on the roof waiting for the fledglings to try to fly and pick them off as a tasty meal as they exit the nest. I am so done with those nasty black birds. They have killed our pullets, they chase the bobcat off when it is hunting rodents, they have taken a gopher and mice from a cat, they worked at destroying the windows in my home and an outbuilding. They harass the horses when I feed and love to shit in the horse feeders and water trough. I dare not leave a storage container out with anything in it including nails as they will work to destroy it. They have taken the weather stripping off the horse trailer and are working diligently at getting the roofing paper pulled out from under the roofing on the barn. To all of those folks who feed them, don’t please. All you are doing is inviting more damage to wildlife and structures. The swallows do not have a chance.

ED NOTE: I'm for the swallows, and I hope they return to the high school as predictably as they do to Capistrano. Central Boonville is over-populated with crows and ravens, just about the only birds of any variety I see in and around my place except for hummingbirds, who I feed. Crows don't seem to have devised a kill strategy for hummingbirds. Between the crows, ravens and cats, and not to mention the numerous other man made hazards, birds seem to be fighting for survival.

SARAH KENNEDY OWEN: Regarding the raven/crow/swallow situation.: Take heart, the crows may go away! We had a whole murder of crows living nearby in an oak tree. We could not hear them but the people who lived near the oaks must have gotten an earful. The crows have moved on and the ravens keep them out. However, I must say, I have never actually seen a crow or raven take babies out of their nest. That’s not to say it never happened. My biggest worry with the birds is the global warming situation, which makes it hard for the parents to keep the babies alive during the hottest days. Also, water is sometimes hard to get during a drought. If you look at the Capistrano swallows (and there is a beautiful book , written and illustrated by Leo Politi, “The Song of the Swallows”, for children, on the subject of the Capistrano swallows) you will notice that the mission where they returned had a huge fountain/birdbath which may have been what kept them coming back. Also, the practice of using pesticides on produce and grapes can kill a lot of delicious tidbits for the birds. So far, the birds do hunt in the vineyards and seem to be getting lots of food. But it could be that insect populations are going down, and thus the bird populations will diminish as well.

BOB ABELES: Don’t worry, neither crows nor ravens lay eggs or have babies. According to something I read on the internet, their fledglings are spontaneously generated from smoke and lightning.

One Comment

  1. Jim Minton July 23, 2023

    The swallows probably moved north like me. We have plenty of ‘em.

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