Issaquah students accepted into flight museum’s Aerospace Scholars Program

July 13, 2010

Michael Rheaume, Andrew Meigs, Joseph Tom, Josiah Lim and Amy Spens, all of Issaquah, are participating in one of four Washington Aerospace Scholars program Summer Residency sessions at The Museum of Flight in Seattle.

Washington Aerospace Scholars is a competitive educational program for high school juniors from across Washington state.

The scholars are among 160 students who qualified for the Washington Aerospace Scholars Summer Residency program from 247 students who applied in November. To qualify, they spent six months studying a NASA-designed, distance-learning curriculum via the Internet. They have been selected to attend one of four residencies hosted at The Museum of Flight in Seattle this summer based on their academic performance on the distance-learning lessons.

During the residency experience, they will collaborate with other student participants on the design of a human mission to Mars. WAS scholars are guided by professional engineers, scientists, university students and certified educators as they plan these missions. The WAS program is designed to inspire students to pursue degrees and careers in science, technology, engineering and math, but the students are divided into teams, which also require them to learn about mission management, budgets, the legal aspects of space exploration and medicine. Read more

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Rapid Response

July 13, 2010

Will King County’s new plan for animal control and sheltering services provide better services for taxpayers?

Yes, if they have a presence here in Issaquah.  They will need to have enough officers to respond in a timely manner to complaints or assistance with regard to animals/pets.

Michele Forkner, Issaquah

Only if ‘animal control’ encompasses the cougars trolling the local bars!

Paul Stewart, Preston

Should Seattle Seahawks linebacker Leroy Hill — facing a domestic violence charge in Issaquah — be allowed to play this season? Read more

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CSI: Issaquah

July 13, 2010

Ninth-graders Mark Taylor, Anders Gelle and Jordan Lederman (from left) review the crime scene and hypothesize what may have happened to the victim inside the science laboratory at the first weeklong summer forensics workshop at Skyline High School. By Chantelle Lusebrink

Class transforms students into super sleuths

Entering a school science laboratory July 1, students stumbled upon a gruesome scene at Skyline High School.

A man was found lying face down on the ground near a microscope table. He had stab wounds in his back and a knife was just feet away.

But instead of calling 911, students began processing the scene.

The mock crime scene was part of the first weeklong summer Crime Scene Investigation and Forensics Workshop, designed to engage middle and high school students.

“It explores the use of Internet tools, basic math and science at variety of levels. It lets the kids go as far as they want,” teacher Chuck Krieble, a retired Redmond police commander, said. “I’m not a rocket scientist, but some of these kids are, and they enjoy it.”

The workshop developed from Krieble’s popular criminology classes at Skyline, which he began in 2004. The classes for high school students cover all facets of the criminal justice system, from police to forensics to court trials.

“It’s a very broad-based program,” he said. “It appeals to students on a variety of levels.”

Some students who are taking advanced level sciences “like to analyze the blood spatter,” he added. “Other students are the types that like to get their hands dirty, digging in the soil and taking casts.” Read more

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Sheriff’s office investigates death threat at Liberty High School

July 13, 2010

After a death threat appeared on a restroom wall at Liberty High School on June 23, the Issaquah School District and King County Sheriff’s Office continue their investigation into who may be responsible.

The writer threatened to bring a gun to school Oct. 27 “and shoot everybody,” police said in describing the pencil-written message.

Liberty Principal Mike Deletis e-mailed members of the school community July 8, following an Issaquah Press article about the incident.

“Because we always take such messages seriously, we immediately contacted the King County Sheriff’s Office,” he wrote. “Police officials launched an investigation, and we are working closely with them as they determine the credibility of the threat and try to identify the person who left the message.”

So far, investigators do not have any leads in the case or a possible suspect, Sgt. John Urquhart, sheriff’s office spokesman, said July 8.

However, they will continue to work with school officials to determine whether the threat is credible and if it is, coordinate with school officials to determine appropriate actions to keep students safe when school is back in session.

School officials called police June 23 after a custodian discovered the message scrawled on a wall near a toilet stall in the boys’ restroom.

Since the school year ended June 17, school officials said that only faculty and school employees had been in the building regularly, but it was possible a student could have come to campus and gone unnoticed.

As part of the investigation, school officials went over security video from the school that day and in days preceding the discovery, but did not notice any strange activity.

“As we approach the new school year, we will continue to partner with the sheriff’s officers, and we will take their guidance to ensure that our students, staff and campus are safe,” Deletis wrote. “I will keep you informed during the process. Again, we are acting with an abundance of precaution.”

Chantelle Lusebrink: 392-6434, ext. 241, or Comment at

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Off The Press

July 13, 2010

Bob Taylor Press sports editor

I don’t want to scare anyone, but please take a quick look at my column photo. You will notice that I am pictured wearing eyeglasses.

Well, that is no longer the case.

As of two weeks ago, I have 20-20 vision. With the exception of reading and doing computer work, I no longer have to wear glasses all day. Like many of you with perfect vision, I can wear Foster Grants on sunny days instead of dealing with clip-ons or prescription sunglasses. When I wake up in the morning, I no longer have to fumble around on the nightstand for my eyeglasses. When I get up in the morning, I see a beautiful world without the aid of eyeglasses.

What a world I was missing until last month!

Now, this is not an advertisement for lasik surgery. However, I did undergo surgery on both eyes for cataracts.

I’m not exactly sure when the cataracts started forming. I do recall last summer that when I wanted to do some recreational reading, I would move the book up to the tip of my nose. I thought it was just bad bifocals. Turns out, it was probably the start of bad cataracts. Each week, reading became more of a challenge. Again, I blamed the bifocals.

Last fall, when we had sunny days, I noticed my eyes were becoming very sensitive to light. I started wearing sunglasses more frequently, and often pushed the baseball cap down to cut out extra sunlight. Eventually, I began wearing sunglasses even on cloudy days — and you know how often we get those around here. Read more

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Mr. Ritzer goes to Washington

July 13, 2010

Issaquah teacher picked for C-SPAN program

Issaquah High School teacher Jeremy Ritzer headed to Washington, D.C., for part of summer break.

Ritzer was among 30 teachers from across the nation invited to attend C-SPAN Classroom’s 2010 Summer Educators’ Conference. The July 12-13 conference was primarily aimed at teachers of sixth- through 12th-grade students who teach civics, social studies, history and media studies classes.

Ritzer teaches Advanced Placement U.S. government, U.S. history and sociology.

C-SPAN Classroom is a free membership service dedicated to supporting educators’ use of its programming and websites in their classes or for research. Since its inception in 1987, the classroom program has reached more than a million students.

At the summer conference, Ritzer and his peers will learn how to use C-SPAN Classroom’s resources to enhance their students’ education, including learning to access and search more than 150,000 hours of archived video dating back to the late 1980s, C-SPAN Education Coordinator Adrienne Hoar said.

There are also opportunities to participate in the Teacher Fellowship Program, C-SPAN’s mission, programming and event coverage.

Teachers were also scheduled to meet Amy Walter, editor of National Journal’s The Hotline, during her guest speaker presentation July 12.

C-SPAN received more than 100 applications for this year’s conference — the most the organization has ever seen, spokeswoman Tamara Robinson said.

Teachers’ conference fees, and travel and lodging expenses, are sponsored by C-SPAN.

On the Web
Learn more about the C-SPAN Classroom program here.

Chantelle Lusebrink: 392-6434, ext. 241, or Comment at

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To The Editor

July 13, 2010

Highlands gas station

Before approving facility, consider broken promises that led to Gulf oil disaster

In response to Mr. Sheehan’s letter in favor of a gas station in the Issaquah Highlands, please consider the news from the Gulf of Mexico.

When the oil companies took more than 10 months to plug the Ixtoc leak (in 160 feet of water) back in 1979, they went on to convince the sleeping officials that they could safely drill in 5,000 feet of water.

Don’t worry, they said, we are prepared to clean up a leak of 200,000 barrels a day if need be. Besides, we know how to contain leaks underwater.

All of these gas station promises will be sitting on top of your drinking water, so as you turn on the tap, think about the Gulf of Mexico, BP and those who are now watching their way of life erode away. Of course, the gas would be closer to home.

Hank Thomas



Protest exposes Costco’s hypocrisy

I am writing in response to Warren Kagarise’s article (July 7) about the Greenpeace blimp flying around Costco. The article brought attention to several interesting aspects.

I think the article did a good job pointing out the hypocrisy of Costco. It can’t deny that it’s selling species such as orange roughy, Chilean sea bass, Alaskan pollock and many more species whose populations are dwindling. At the same time, it has a “sustainability statement” and its spokesperson says it is mostly selling farmed fish.

Still, we all know farmed fish can be even worse than commercial fishing — just take a look at Atlantic salmon. With the seafood Costco is selling, it is contributing to ruining a commonly shared resource by supporting bottom trawling, overfishing and depletion of species. How sustainable is that?

I think it was honorable that the Costco president met with the protesters, though. That shows that he at least gives a damn.

Anna Tilman

Greenwood Point

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City reviews plan to split lot

July 13, 2010

The neighborhood surrounding 520 Mountain Park Boulevard Southwest could add another lot.

City planners last week started reviewing a plan to divide the existing 20,497-square-foot parcel at the site into two lots.

The application calls for the existing residence at the site to remain on a 10,867-square-foot lot next to a 9,630-square-foot parcel in the Squak Mountain neighborhood.

The landowner proposed access to the new lot from Mount Fury Circle Southwest. The plan calls for access to the existing home to remain from Mountain Park Boulevard Southwest.

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City, EFR come in third in Relay for Life donations

July 13, 2010

City of Issaquah and Eastside Fire & Rescue employees came in third in overall fundraising for the 2010 Relay for Life event. They raised more than $9,000 for the American Cancer Society and were presented with the Diamond Award for their efforts.

“Participating in Relay has become a city tradition for us,” city spokeswoman Autumn Monahan said. “Our employees faithfully support the cause through donations, volunteer hours and participation in our annual citywide fundraising event.”

The teams who raised the most money in the Issaquah Relay for Life were Team Aloha with $55,750, and Hank’s High Flyers with $9,583, according to the event website.

“It’s a wonderful way to support those affected by cancer, many of whom are our family members, co-workers and dear friends,” Monahan said.

Find more statistics about this year’s Relay for Life event here.

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Register to vote by July 19

July 13, 2010

In order to cast a ballot in the Aug. 17 primary election, King County residents must register to vote by July 19.

Registered voters with outdated information must also update their information by the deadline.

In order to register as a Washington voter, a person must be a U.S. citizen, a Washington resident, at least 18 by Election Day and not under the authority of the state Department of Corrections.

Voters do not have to register by political party or declare political party membership to vote in primary or general elections.

Find a full list of requirements and registration forms at the King County Elections website.

Issaquah voters will narrow the field in legislative, congressional and judicial races in the Aug. 17 primary.

Voters will winnow the contenders in each race — regardless of party affiliation — to two candidates. The top candidates advance to the November general election.

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