El Cajon, CA
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Articles by BJ Coleman

“Moving violation” is not a penalty with flags thrown in professional football. Local observers might rue that fact, in contemplating the multiple unfortunate consequences for area communities, flowing from departure of the former San Diego Chargers for Los Angeles.

El Cajon has got talent -- specifically, this East County city has impressive authors among its residents. And the El Cajon Library showed off three of the area’s accomplished book writers on the afternoon of Saturday, Jan. 21. The event was the Local Authors Expo.

Dr. Corey Marco has a new office, several paces down the street from his former medical practice facility. Framed degrees and awards hang on his office wall, but none of those relate to his 40 years as a physician in El Cajon.

Marco retired from medicine as December ended, and he is proud of a thick binder full of personal notes, cards and thank-you letters from patients who deeply regret his departure from being their doctor. He shared these remembrances during an interview on Jan. 9.

The Olaf Wieghorst Museum and Western Heritage Center in El Cajon kicked off this year’s shows with a special nod toward the namesake artist the gallery features. The first formal exhibit of the Wieghorst Museum’s schedule this year is titled “Salmagundians and Their Friends -- Southern California,” a showing of artworks by plein air artists. The term plein air refers to those painters who complete their works in open air so as to capture the actual effects of light and atmosphere on their subjects.

Whose heart isn’t warmed by a true love story with a happy ending? The tale East County author Amanda Matti has to tell of the cross-cultural romance with her now-husband, however, is fraught with unexpected obstacles and troubling difficulties.

Raymond L. Moody is a remarkable man, courageous and compassionate, accomplished and humble. He has been an El Cajon resident for three decades. He served in the U.S. Navy for 23 years, retiring in 1966 as a Chief Boatswain’s Mate. His active-duty career spanned the major conflicts of World War II, Korea and Vietnam. Now 90 years of age, he is still a veteran serving other veterans, spending time each day at Miramar National Cemetery to assist grieving family members of military veterans.

Auxiliary sisters associated with Santee’s Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 9327 proved they are adept at spreading holiday cheer for East County children in military families by bringing Santa Claus out for an early visit on the morning of Saturday, Dec. 10. 

East County is home to many unique institutions. Among these is Friends of Cats, a private nonprofit organization dedicated to the care and well-being of homeless felines. During Saturday evening Dec. 10, staffers and volunteers at the facility welcomed visitors to the third annual Whisker Wonderland, a Christmas celebration to benefit cats at the site.

Heidi Clark, assistant office manager with the facility, described this year’s Whisker Wonderland as the best yet, for the festivities and turnout.

American women’s entry into new and different workforce roles has produced much debate, analysis and art. On Dec. 1, Grossmont College’s Theatre Arts Department opening night presented a play based on the real history of women who began working during the 1920’s, remunerated at what was then considered very good female worker pay, for painting clock and watch dials with radium-based paint that glowed in the dark.