La Verne’s Finest (and their fine families) Saluted by the City

May 5, 2009
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Ronald M. Alberca proudly unveils a new banner dedicated in his name for his service to his country.

Ronald M. Alberca proudly unveils a new banner dedicated in his name for his service to his country.

On an evening when so many patriotic members of the military and their families filled the council chambers, there was little time or motivation for discussion on normal city items like taxes, graffiti abatement, and water rationing. Rather, the night was given over to the City’s Military Banner Recognition Program, which recognizes the more than 200 active service men and women from La Verne with service-recognition banners posted throughout the City.


“Tonight, we are honoring the additional families who are sacrificing for our county and telling them how much we appreciate their service,” said Mayor Don Kendrick. “We are very proud of the fact that we have military families from La Verne. We are definitely saying that we appreciate the sacrifice that not only your young people are making, but what you are sacrificing also by being here and supporting them.”


The Military Banner Recognition Program was started over four years ago by Carla Sullivan, former superintendent of La Verne’s Community Center.


The newest military honorees were:


1. Ronald M. Alberca – Marines

2. Joshua M. Albert – Marines

3. Eric R. Barrios – Air Force

4. Steven I. Davis – Navy

5. Derek Dreyfuss – Air Force

6. Matthew F. Espina – Navy

7. Andrew M. Fernandez – Navy

8. Anthony L. Fox II – Air Force

9. Robert B. Gray – Marines

10. Robert Kirkland – Army

11. Wesley T. Knudson – Navy

12. Ryan P. McKee – Air Force

13. Andrew P. Quiroz – Army

14. Timothy W. Schendel – Marines


The new banners will all be up before Memorial Day, May 26.


Parents were invited to share where their sons were serving around the globe, their service assignments (to the extent they had been told or could speak about them) and their honors received.


“A lot of their jobs, you don’t find in our way of life,” added Kendrick, commenting on Robert B. Gray, who is currently studying Farsi, the most widely spoken Persian (Iran) language. Others were radar operators, infantry medics, intelligence specialists and a host of other highly specialized and classified positions.


Robert Kirkland, another being honored, is a career Army officer who is a professor of military science at Claremont McKenna College. At the end of May, the La Verne resident will deploy to Iraq as a member of the United Nation’s multi-national force, to return the following May.


When community members complete their military service, their banners are removed from the light pole and presented to their family with a yellow ribbon. Four individuals were recognized for their completed service:


1. Theresa A. Blue – Marines

2. Kyle S. Miller – Marines

3. James A. Mitchell – Army

4. Edward Noriega – Marines



The cost of the banner program is funded solely by donations. To date, more than $31,500 has been raised from our community. Following are the most recent sponsors and individuals to be recognized:



1. Dow Hydraulic Systems

2. Durston Manufacturing, Inc.

3. Generations Antiques .

4. Haaker Equipment Company .

5. Kim’s Dairy & General Store

6. L & M Home Inspections

7. La Verne Community News

8. La Verne Heritage Foundation

9. La Verne Retired Senior Volunteer Patrol

10. Law Office of Howard R. Hawkins

11. Legend Packaging Group

12. Lordsburg Foundation

13. Warehouse Pizza

14. WF Construction

1. The Carrera Family

2. The Dawson Family

3. The Houston-Brown Family

4. The Kurdoghlian Family

5. The Larkin Family

6. The Loncar Family

7. The Long Family

8. Cynthia A. Lopez

9. Richard P. McKee

10. Lisa G. Moreno

11. William Nelson

12. Lucy Vinci


For more information about this special program, contact Parks and Community Services, 3680 “D” Street, La Verne, CA 91750, (909) 596-8777 or email Bill Aguiree at LaVerneOnline apologizes for the sub-par qualities of some photos. The newspaper was working with a back-up camera and was unfamiliar with some of the setting. Again, our apologies.







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