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“I’ll say something,” said the father of one of Kelsey’s friends when words were hard to come by at the beginning of the vigil, “Kelsey was a sweetheart.”. There is no minimizing or sugar-coating death. But it seems especially devastating when it chooses a student, in this case a young woman preparing to unleash her potential on the world. Truth to tell, it has been a wrenching school year in the Liberty Union High School District. Five students in the district have died, four in the past two months. One was a promising baseball player. One was into math, theater and dance. Kelsey had a motto: Today will be great.

District superintendent Eric Volta has lived the nightmare before, He lost students as a teacher and as an administrator, “One year at Freedom, the 2001-02 school year, we lost four in the span of two weeks,” he said, The current run of tragedies is a cruel coincidence, High school students have enough on their minds, preparing to plot their own future instead of having it plotted for them, ballet pointe shoes near me test-driving new emotions and concepts — responsibility, achievement, friendship, love, Death has no business intruding on what many of us, in hindsight, regard as the most carefree days of our lives..

Counseling students, helping them to cope is case-by-case, Volta said. Guidance counselors and school psychologists are pulled from their normal duties. The past two months the Contra Costa Crisis Center has sent volunteers. “We set up time-out rooms,” Volta said. “Sometimes those are very helpful.” Some students want to be in the classroom they’re supposed to be in — two speakers at Kelsey’s vigil mentioned seeing her empty desk on Monday. “Sometimes teachers give assignments to students who want to do something,” Volta said. “There are some students who want to be in their own thoughts, and they can be.”.

Wednesday night it seemed to feel good to be together in the quad, A girl offered a prayer which went, in part, “Please help us move on from this situation, I hope she makes the angels up there happy the way she made us happy down here.”, “Your friendship means the world to me,” another girl said, “The two and a half years we were best friends was the best time of my life, The many days we spent together will always be in my heart.”, It was interesting to hear several speakers begin, “I wasn’t planning on talking tonight.” One was Kelsey’s ballet pointe shoes near me father, Arne..

“I didn’t think I could make it here,” he said. “This means more than you ever will know. We need to move forward and keep her with us. Thank you for such an outpouring of love.”. Kelsey’s older sister Haley got a laugh from the crowd of about 250 when she said, “For a girl who said she had no friends, I mean really Kelsey?. “Seeing everyone here, all the lives she touched, she did what she was sent here to do,” she said. The balloons were released near the end of the vigil. They drifted silently up, up and out of sight. Just before the hour-long event broke up, the crowd shouted in unison, “We love you Kelsey!”.

SAN JOSE — A half century ago, Roy Hirabayashi remembers how in Japantown you could “walk down the middle of the street blindfolded and not worry about being hit by a car.”, Now, not so much, “I’m sensing more folks are wanting to come back,” the 67-year-old founder of San Jose Taiko said as cars buzzed by in search of elusive parking spots near Roy’s Station (no relation) — a cafe that opened nine years ago in a converted gas station at the corner of North 5th and Jackson ballet pointe shoes near me streets..

Like the rest of the city — rapidly changing with the heavy influx of tech companies — this 128-year-old enclave nestled just north of downtown is undergoing its own transformation. Signs of the shifting landscape at the heart of Japantown are everywhere, visible reminders of the push and pull between corporate and mom-and-pop, modern and old: Gleaming new apartments and an arts center are planned on the neighborhood’s last large undeveloped piece  of land, the city’s former corporation yard. New restaurants — not all Japanese and many owned by people of non-Japanese descent — and a hipster hat store have opened in the last several years.

But while San Jose Tofu Co, — the last handmade tofu maker in the Bay Area and a favorite for generations — suddenly shuttered this winter, old Japantown still thrives. Shuei-Do, a manju shop on Jackson Street, has been doling out handmade sweets for ballet pointe shoes near me 65 years, And Kogura, the gift shop that sells vases, figurines and other items, has been around for generations, The tension is, in many ways, not unique, The story of Japantown, which runs loosely from North 1st to North 7th streets and East Hedding to East Empire streets, is one of immigration, racism, struggle and the American dream, It’s particularly relevant now, as Silicon Valley booms around it, to consider what Japantown is and where it’s headed, Locals don’t want to be overrun by the Googles and Amazons of the world, but they don’t want to be left behind, either..

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