50 years ago — Calexico police investigator Gilbert Ayala announced today that Calexico residents are being asked to report any suspicious persons who may be loitering around residential houses.

The request for cooperation came in view of two more recent burglaries, one on Monday, the other on Tuesday.

Raphael Castro reported to police that he had left his home around 2 p.m. Monday and upon returning at 7 p.m. found his rear door open and his home burglarized.

Police said the intruder apparently entered the house by tearing a hole in the side window screen and entering through the window.

Castro reported that a passport for his wife, Amparo, was taken along with seven silver dollars, two Kennedy halves, two graduation rings with an early 1950 date and a clock radio.

Mrs. Eva Ramirez reported a burglary at her residence Tuesday. Mrs. Ramirez said she had left her residence at 1:30 p.m. and returned at 7:40 p.m. During this time the burglary apparently occurred.

Reportedly taken were a lady’s watch valued at $157 and a man watch valued at $200. Also taken was a considerable amount of lady’s and men’s jewelry. Mrs. Ramirez also reported that articles of lady’s undergarments had been taken.

Ayala said there were many similarities between these burglaries and the two that occurred last week.

“The suspects seem to know when the house will be empty to carry out the burglaries unnoticed,” he said. “We are asking that residents report any suspicious activities immediately, and if they know their neighbors are on vacation, that they check the house periodically and report anything that appears wrong.”


40 years ago -- Railroad officials announced Tuesday that only nine people were killed in last week’s train derailment and attributed earlier reports that 15 had been killed to “confusion.”

Virgilio Moreno Peralta, chief of personnel for the Sonora-Baja California rail line, said in addition to the nine dead, 20 persons were hospitalized and another 100 treated at the site.

The dead included two railroad workers, Galdino Ruvulcaba Garcia, 65, of Guadalajara, Mexico, and Basilio Guzman Oropeza, 48, of Mexicali.

Peralta claimed this was the first time rail workers had been killed in a train accident, the worst in 40 years, he added.

Garcia, who had worked 38 years for the rail line, was the train engineer, Peralta said.


20 years ago — Radio Flyer wagons are being used by Westmorland Union Elementary School students to deliver breakfast to classmates in an effort to get more children to eat before classes begin.

The Westmorland district conducts a breakfast program in which a couple kids from each classroom, kindergarten through eighth grade, are given the responsibility of delivering breakfast to classmates in a little red wagon.

Julie Mitchell, food services director for the school, attended the California Association of School Business Officials statewide conference in Ontario last school year. She became aware of a similar program in Modesto school district and liked it.

The deliveries were started in the Westmorland district last school year during May and June for seventh- and eighth-grade classes only as a pilot program to see if it would work.

Anne Mallory, superintendent of the district, said it did.

“It’s unfortunate that some children come to school hungry,” she said. “Breakfast is the most important meal of the day and by having this program we teach them to get in that rhythm of eating breakfast every day.”

Mallory said the program not only gives students breakfast but teaches the students responsibility through delivering food to their classrooms and cleaning up their trash after the meal.

The daily routine for the breakfast starts about 8 a.m., when children from different grade levels go to the cafeteria and pick up their wagon-full of food. The children then take the food to the classroom, where classmates are waiting.

They eat breakfast until about 8:30 a.m. After they are done, students pick up their trash and place it in a garbage bag, which another classmate takes back to the cafeteria in the wagon.

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