Tag: Mesa Arizona

Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. View from a Desert Southwest Street


Sitting outside in sunny downtown Mesa, Arizona. I’m following doctor’s orders, getting a ration of sunshine for Vitamin D. So, I sip an iced coffee from Jarrod’s Tea, Coffee, and Gallery.

The Mesa Brew Fest was cancelled, but lots of people are walking and sitting outdoors drinking in each establishment’s designated drinking area, patio, beer garden. Inside, people from teens to 70ish, I estimate, are filling Jarrod’s with needed business. You see, he just knocked a hole in one wall and doubled his floor space. So, he is doing the small business high wire act in a historically tough for business downtown.


Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Remembering the Murder of a Convenience Store Clerk


One year ago, around midnight, as Saturday turned into Sunday the 16th of December, 2018, a gunman entered a small independent convenience store. The space inside is tight, very close quarters, and the clerk decided to fight for his life and his co-workers, instead of accepting whatever fate the thug decided. The clerk, Jose Alcaraz-Hernandez, lost his life, and a co-worker was seriously wounded. The crime has not been solved in the year since that night.

The large group of prayer candles and flowers gave way in fairly short order to a permanent wooden cross. The hand-painted cross outside the store tells us that Jose Hernandez was born November 18, 1964, and was killed on December 16, 2018. From a photograph put up in the first days, we know him to have been a grandfather. We know nothing of the killer. If the police know more, they are not saying so to the public.


Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. RAF Cadet Memorial Service: 10 November 2019 [Updated Photos]


The town of Mesa, Arizona, hosted the annual Royal Air Force Cadet memorial service at 1045, Sunday 10 November 2019 in the center of the Mesa Cemetery. There 23 cadets died far from home, learning to fly before going to Canada to train in their warbirds.

The Caledonian Society of Arizona provided the bagpipes. The Commemorative Air Force of Arizona conducted flyovers in the basic (Stearman biplanes) and advanced trainers (T-6) used in World War II. A firing detail of seven American Legion members rendered a 21-gun salute in three volleys. British Last Post was played, on a British military bugle, followed by the U.S. version on U.S. military standard bugle. A Boy Scout troop handed out programs, British standard poppies (much larger and sturdier than the VFW “Buddy Poppy”), and cups of water (the temperature under mostly sunny skies heading into the 80s.


Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Memory and Forgetfulness


For a metropolis of 500,000, Mesa, Arizona still has a small-town feel. Each year, veterans’ organizations and community members gather to honor our war dead at the original Mesa Cemetery, established in 1891. This year, the downtown posts of the Veterans of Foreign Wars and the American Legion hosted the ceremony. The ceremony was simple and dignified, conducted in unseasonably mild weather.


Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Wheels of Justice Spinning?


In mid-December, I wrote about the murder of a convenience store clerk in “Drug Dealing: Not a Victimless Crime.” In that piece, you saw the rapid response of a makeshift shrine, with many prayer candles burning. Now, that temporary shrine is replaced with a permanent cross, lit by two prayer candles at all times.

The cross confirms the sparse details given in a follow-up KTAR news story, shortly after the murderous attack, or robbery attempt:


Contributor Post Created with Sketch. The East Valley Loves a Parade: Martin Luther King Jr. Parade


Monday, 21 January 2019, was a bright day for the Valley of the Sun. The East Valley Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Parade and Festival, hosted by the City of Mesa, was well attended and had enough parade entries to last over an hour. Both the crowd lining the parade route, and those marching, broadly reflected the East Valley community.

Parade Organization:


Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Veterans’ Day in Mesa, AZ: Bigger and Better


For decades, the Phoenix Veterans’ Day parade dominated the state, and certainly the Valley of the Sun. While Mesa has always hosted a parade, it has been much smaller, and less spectacular. This year’s East Valley Veterans Parade was bigger, better, and showed signs of truly being the East Valley Veterans Parade, hosted by Mesa.

Mesa Mayor John Giles and the city council participated, as always, but this year they were joined by Mayor Jenn Daniels and the town council of Gilbert. As the Mesa Police Department led the parade, with a line of motorcycle officers, and a marching unit, the Gilbert Police Department countered with a restomodded heavy Chevy.


Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Remembrance of RAF Cadets in Arizona? Yes, and Therein Lies a Tale


Three Veterans’ Days ago, I attended the East Valley Veterans Parade in Mesa, AZ. After the parade, I walked over to a restaurant for a bite to eat. In walked a spry elderly gentleman, who sat down across the bar from me. He had a small lapel pin, a twin blade propellor, telling me he was an aviator. So I asked. He had flown from England, as he had for many years, to honor his fallen mates from pilot training.

For obvious reasons, Britain was not a safe place, to learn to fly, during most of World War II. So, the United States agreed to set up three airfields, with support facilities, for the RAF. That is how Mesa got Falcon Field, which is very much in use today.


Promoted from the Ricochet Member Feed by Editors Created with Sketch. Conservative Urbanism


shutterstock_153379958Over at Politico, Ethan Epstein of the Weekly Standard writes that Mesa, Arizona may be the model for conservative urbanism:

While it’s willing to make investments, Mesa is also lean in ways that more bloated liberal cities can’t boast. Take the City Council. Despite Mesa’s hefty population, council members are part-timers who have day jobs in fields from education to copper mining. City leaders also pay themselves considerably less than those in other cities do. Mesa City Council members make only $33,000 a year, and the mayor is paid only $73,000. (And those salaries represent the fruits of a big raise: Before last year, city councilmembers made less than $20,000 a year and the mayor earned only $36,000.)