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Day: August 6, 2010

Rush hour crash on River Road sends four to hospital

Keizer firefighters at the scene of a Tuesday evening accident on River Road that sent four people to the hospital. KEIZERTIMES/Joce DeWitt

An afternoon rush hour accident on River Road sent four to the hospital on Tuesday, Aug. 3, police said.

The accident at River Road and Cummings Lane occurred, police believe, after the driver of a 1993 GMC Suburban didn’t stop for a traffic signal and T-boned a 2003 Dodge Caravan headed northbound on River Road at about 5:52 p.m. [MAP: 1]

A third vehicle, a 2003 Toyota Rav4, was in the parking lot of a nearby business complex and was struck in the accident. No one was in the car at the time.

The occupants of the Suburban –  Walter A. Peca, 42, and a 12-year-old girl – along with the passengers in the van, Daniel Garcia, 55, and Diana Barrios, 50, were transported to Salem Hospital. The extent of their injuries were not available at press time.

The accident remains under investigation, and no citations have been issued.

Elva Weigum

E. Weigum

A memorial service for Ms. Weigum will be at 1 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 7, at Keizer Community Church.

Ms. Weigum, of Keizer, died Friday, July 23, 2010. She was 95 years old.

Born April 13, 1915 to Georgia and James Sowles in Worthington, Minn., she grew up in Lake Park, Iowa. She married Jacob Weigum in 1946 and moved to a farm in Keizer. She was an accomplished vocalist and enjoyed playing the piano, singing, cooking, baking and sewing. Her knitted items made it all over the world, including Russia and Romania.

Ms. Weigum was preceded in death by her sister, Vera Harte; and her husband. Survivors include: four children, Kendall Kay Jacobsen-Sheng (Li), Kenneth Ray Weigum (Laurie), Linda May Jordan (Robert) and Lenny Jay Weigum; six grandchildren, Melissa, Nicholas, Jennifer, Stephanie, Chelle and Brenda; 11 great-grandchildren; one niece and two nephews.

Contributions in Mrs. Weigum’s memory may be made to Keizer Community Church or Union Gospel Mission. Arrangements by Keizer Funeral Chapel.

Elizabeth Buren

Mrs. Buren, of Salem and formerly of Keizer, died Monday, July 26, 2010. She was 96.

Born May 10, 1914, in Nashua, Iowa, she moved to Oregon with her husband, where they raised six children and worked together in their landscaping business.

She enjoyed gardens, the beach, camping with family and the beauty of the outdoors. She had a talent for crocheting and painting, and took joy in making treats in the kitchen with family.

She was preceded in death by her husband, Herman, son, John; and brothers, Paul and Fred. Survivors include: her daughters, Marie Harris, Polly (Berl) Davis, Shirley (Kelton) Jensen and Judy (Ken) Tennant; son, Larry (Lorena) Buren; 14 grandchildren; several great and great-great grandchildren; and many nieces and nephews.

A celebration of life will be held at a later date.

SILVER SNEAKERS: A perfect fit

Richard Groff and Art Gates (pink shirt)

Of the Keizertimes

When Colin Leech suffered a second stroke in three years, he knew where to go to hasten his recovery.

Leech is a veteran of Silver Sneakers, the nationally-recognized program offered at the Courthouse Athletic Club in Keizer. It’s here where Leech’s physical therapist sent him after suffering his first stroke three years ago.

“Well, when I had that first stroke, I couldn’t put my pants on without leaning up against something. Coming here, I’ve got my balance back,” Leech said. “Then, I had this minor stroke. So I’m working on that now.”

Following the second stroke, Leech couldn’t take two steps without having to hold onto something.

“When I first came back, I had a walker, and I did that for about a week. Then I had a cane. But I couldn’t figure out how to use a cane, so I just started walking,” said Leech. “I still have days where I lose my balance if I move too quick. But other than that I think I’m doing pretty well.”

Julia Goin has her own success story to share.

“I was injured in an automobile accident involving a drunk driver,” Goin said when asked of her motivation to join. “My injuries included a fractured scapula and four fractured ribs along with vision problems.”

The recuperative powers of Silver Sneakers caught her by surprise.

“It’s kind of like physical therapy on steroids, because instead of just concentrating on one spot, like physical therapy does, it’s for the whole body,” said Goin. “I’ve enjoyed Silver Sneakers because it’s easy to do and you get flexibility and strength training.”

Goin, a former race walker, was physically fit before the drunk driver slammed into her. She suffered further injury when she fell and broke her kneecap in January.

“I didn’t know how important a kneecap was when I broke it. But anyway, so after physical therapy, I came back still wearing a leg brace … It’s just really helped me to get back to where I was before,” she said.

Silver Sneakers is an exercise program that specializes in increasing balance, flexibility, range of motion and strength.

“We use bands, weights, balls. There’s chairs for people who need assistance with their balance,” said Christa Gilbert, who has taught the class in Keizer for 10 years. “Silver Sneakers is really about helping people stay active in their lives. So picking up your groceries, grabbing and hugging your grand kids, putting things away on high shelves You know, those kinds of things. It’s to help maintain that in your life.”

The population served is generally 65 and older. But that’s not always the case.

“Ladies who are pregnant. People who are recovering from an injury or surgery,” said Gilbert of those who benefit from participation. “Lots of things can prompt you to exercise in different ways than you’re used to in your life, so the age range varies.”

What constitutes a good workout is determined individually.

“You can get a good workout even sitting in a chair,” said Gilbert. “You always want to honor your body and do as much as you possibly can. But there are good things that can happen to you in any activity.”

Silver Sneakers is widely respected in the medical community because it generates positive results in the treatment of such things as diabetes and high blood pressure, not to mention promoting recovery from surgeries and strokes.

In addition, there’s a socialization component to Silver Sneakers.

“We’re a family. New members are absorbed into that family,” said Gilbert. “We’re so appreciative for all of the new faces that we get to see and for all the people we get to share our lives with.”

Anyone interested in joining the class is encouraged to review their medical insurance policy. The monthly enrollment charge is covered in some plans.

In Keizer, classes are held Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, from 11:15 a.m. to 12:15 p.m.

ATHLETE OF THE WEEK: Presented by Copper Creek Mercantile

B. Elliot

Like many, a medical emergency led Bill Elliott to the Silver Sneakers program at Courthouse Athletic Club in Keizer.

Bill enrolled seven years ago after suffering a stroke. He appreciates the program’s low-stress environment.

“Workouts are relatively easy. The thing I like about them is that nobody gets on your case. If you can’t do something, just sit down and nobody’s going to yell at you to get with the program,” he said. “Just standing next to a chair and holding on while moving your feet is a challenge.”

Still, Bill challenges himself enough to gain benefits.

“I’m actually too close to the situation to notice the improvements,” he said. “I depend on others who look at me and say you’re getting better.”

Support is another key component.

“Well, it’s basically essential. It would be hard to keep going if you didn’t have it,” he said.

Bill attends the class three times a week. He also lifts weights.

Keizer man named state’s top drug officer

Of the Keizertimes

It was a bad year for the bad guys.

Rick Bojorquez, a local resident who coaches baseball for Keizer Little League, is also a narcotics detective for the Polk County Sheriff’s Office. It’s a position that’s keeps him busy.

For example, over the past year or so, Bojorquez:

• Served as lead investigator on “Operation VACA.” The investigation resulted in the dismantling of a methamphetamine distribution ring operating in Polk and Marion counties.

The case resulted in the execution of four search warrants that led to the arrest of four ring members.

Seizures included a 2007 Dodge Ram pickup, a 1998 Honda Accord, a 40-inch LCD flat screen television, $4,480 in cash, 11.3 grams of cocaine and 52.6 grams of methamphetamine;

• Served as lead investigator in response to reports of a reported methamphetamine lab operating in Independence;

• Assisted his fellow officers by writing and serving a search warrant on a residence in Rickreall that identified an indoor marijuana growing operation.

Confiscated from the site were two duffle bags filled with ammunition, duct tape, scanners, night vision goggles and bolt cutters; and,

• Conducted training for newly-assigned agents to the Polk Interagency Narcotics Team (or POINT).

Bojorquez’s efforts didn’t go unnoticed by his peers. He was awarded the 2010 Oregon Narcotic Enforcement Association (ONEA) Officer of the Year at a conference held last month in Redmond.

“The award took me totally by surprise,” said Bojorquez. “It was a total shock to me. Basically, they had to punch me in the shoulder at the conference and say, ‘hey, that’s you.’ I didn’t expect anything like that.”

The detective didn’t have to give a speech. But he knows what he would have said if asked.

“My speech, if they would have made me talk to everyone there, would have been to thank the group, thanking first and foremost my POINT team members that I work with on a daily basis, and then all the other agencies that assisted us in the investigations,” said Bojorquez.

Others in the department say the honor is richly deserved.

“We are very proud of the accomplishments and contributions Detective Bojorquez has brought to the Polk County Sheriff’s Office,” said Sheriff Bob Wolfe. “Detective Bojorquez does very well in our narcotics division because he has been on the streets for years. He knows a lot of individuals he has worked with over the years so he is very resourceful in establishing contacts and information.”

Today marks 20 years since Bojorquez first joined the Polk County Sheriff’s Office. He began his career has a corrections officer, moved up to deputy and was promoted to detective some four years ago.

“I really believe I found my niche with drug enforcement,” said Bojorquez. “Just the way I was raised. I grew up around some drug culture stuff. I just had an inkling of what it was all about before I was actually a drug detective.”

Looking back, his career path is a surprise.

“I never even thought about law enforcement as a youth, maybe when we played cops and robbers as a kid,” he said. “If you knew me between the ages of 17 and 21, the things that I did. I tell some people now days that if I went back to Palm Springs and saw some old friends, they wouldn’t believe I was a police officer.”

But he is an officer. In fact, he is the office’s senior member

“In today’s law enforcement field, having experienced officers is exceptionally valuable to our operations,” said Wolfe. “Detective Bojorquez provides natural leadership to our younger officers and his experience lends itself to this because he uses a lot of common sense in how he approaches things. He has been on the street long enough to know what works and what does not.”

Bojoriquez’s time off is devoted to family and baseball. He grew up in southern California and is a lifelong Dodgers and Angels fan. He began coaching when he was 17.

“For me, it’s a stress reliever,” Bojorquez said of coaching. “My dad loved baseball, so it just kind of grew on me.”

He remembers his father sitting in the living room, listening simultaneously to broadcasts of both teams on different radios.

Jeremy Wentworth has coached with and against him. Wentworth described Bojorquez as thoroughly prepared, knowledgeable about the game, and respected by others.

“When he talks, his kids listen,” said Wentworth. “It’s great to play his teams because you know they’ll play hard and be fundamentally sound.”

Summer is winding down, but tennis fun remains on the schedule

The Keizer Tennis Association “Slammin’ Summer Tennis” program is winding down at Highland Park in Salem.

KTA’s final camps are Monday, Aug. 9, through Friday, Aug. 13, for ages 6-18.

Because of the location of the tennis courts along Broadway, KTA gained much needed visibility and exposure.

Enjoying tennis fun this summer are, front row, left to right: Angel Garcia Garibay, Jose Antonio Hernandez and Jonathan Hernandez. Back row: Nathan Smith, Greyson Walker, and Keizer Tennis Association President Rick Hammerquist. (Submitted photo)

“We had to make the move to Highland Park because the McNary High School courts are being reconstructed,” said KTA President Rick Hammerquist. “People see our banners along busy Broadway Avenue and they see we are putting on tennis camps and want to participate … We continue to believe if tennis courts are visible to the community, they get more play and our programs gain momentum.”

KTA will conduct one more free Match Day on Saturday, August 14th, 8:30-11 a.m., for 7- to 18-year-olds at Highland Park. People can register by calling 503-585-4819 or going to the KTA website at

The summer’s first Match Day was held Saturday, July 31. It was attended by seven juniors. Match Day gave these kids the chance to play the Quickstart tennis format and play regular scoring.

Barb Henke Smith and Hammerqust ran this event for KTA.

SKIT Theatre offers classes, auditions

SKIT Theatre is taking registrations now for its fall classes.

And a recent change is good news for local residents.

“We’re excited that our new location will be very handy for all Keizer residents,” said director Lori Hammer.

SKIT Theatre provides youths with a creative outlet. (submitted photo)

Both the SKIT classes, for students in grades 6-12, and  the SKIT-L’s classes, for students in grades 1-5, will be at New Harvest Church, 4290 Portland Road NE, Salem.

Each session is 10 weeks and costs $100.

SKIT Theatre began at Dayspring Fellowship as a theatre outreach for teens in the Salem/Keizer community and has grown into its own non-profit theatre company.

Students can take part in theatre classes or full-scale productions.

This past season audiences were treated to “Holes” and all its dirt at Claggett Creek Middle School, and “Beauty and the Beast,” complete with tea party, at the Historic Grand Theatre in Salem.

SKIT classes start Thursday, Sept. 16, and end Nov. 18.

Students choose from any of the following offerings: improvisation, acting, dance, vocals or directing.

“Though the idea was always to focus on teens, the demand has been so great that we’ve expanded to include the SKIT-L’s program of theatre classes for students in grades 1-5,” said Hammer.

SKIT-L’s classes start Wednesday, Sept. 16, and run through Nov. 17.

Students study acting, singing and dance in their age group.

Registration night for SKIT and SKIT-L’s is Wednesday, Sept. 8, from 5-7 p.m., at New Harvest Church in Salem.

Or maybe your student is interested in auditioning.

“Facing the Giants,” the inspirational football movie, is being adapted into an exciting, crowd-cheering play, Hammer said.Auditions are open to all Salem/Keizer teens in grades 6-12.

They will be held Saturday, Sept. 25, 10-11:30 a.m., 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m., or 1:30-3 p.m., and on Sunday, Sept. 26, 2-3:30 p.m. or 3:30 to 5 p.m.

Those wishing to audition need to email [email protected] to book a time and date.

Rehearsals are Thursday evenings and Sunday afternoons from October through January.

Performances are Feb 3, 4, 5, 10 and 11, 2011 at the Christian CenterRd NE.

Check out the web site at for more information.

Capital City ends season in thrilling style

Members of the Capital City Select 14-U baseball team include, top row, left to right: Coach Mark Hardin, Andrew Ketelson, Connor Goff, Ben DeSaulnier, Travis Klampe, Trent Hardin, Alex Barzee, coach Willy Goff and coach Justin Barchus. Bottom row: Manager Scott Barchus, Cody Ratliff, Connor Suing, Jordan Barchus, coach Daniel Zavala, Cyrus Mooney and coach David Zavala

REDDING, Calif. – The Capital City Select 14-U baseball team wrapped up its season in dramatic fashion by completing three come-from-behind victories at the Big League Field of Dreams.

The thrilling wins provided the Black Sox with the tournament title.

“We ended the season at 44-22,” said manager Scott Barchus, “a number that includes eight finals appearances and three championship titles against the highest level of competition in the Northwest.

Here’s a recap from Redding:

Capital City 10, Nor Cal Royals 7
Capital City started pool play against the Royals. It was 2-1 after the first inning when the Black Sox broke out with five runs on five consecutive bunts. Then scored one more on doubles by Connor Goff and Cody Ratliff. Alex Barzee put the game out of reach with a two-RBI double in the fourth to give the Sox a 10-3 lead.

Capital City 7, Redding Vipers 6
Capital City fell behind in the the first following a leadoff home run by the Vipers. But responded with one run in their next at-bat.

Capital City gained the lead, 3-1, in the third. But Redding responded with a three-run home run to lead 4-3.

The Sox tied it in the top of the fifth when Trent Hardin scored on an error. But the Vipers struck again to lead 6-4.

Down to their last out with Hardin on first, the Black Sox began their comeback. Back-to-back singles by Goff and Andrew Ketelson loaded the bases. Ratliff followed with a huge RBI double to the wall to tie the game at six. Jordan Barchus walked and Travis Klampe was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded to bring in the go-ahead run.

With a runner in scoring position, Connor Suing closed out the win.

Capital City 5, Rohnert Park Courage 3
Great pitching by Ketelson and a lack of offense for the Sox had the game tied at one entering the fourth.

The Courage then scored one more off Ketelson on an error, but the Sox came back with their biggest inning, scoring Barzee, Hardin and Ketelson to take the lead 4-2 going into the fifth.

Capital tacked on one more in the bottom of the fifth when Ben DeSaulnier hit a solo home run to center field; Barzee followed with the save to complete pool play as the number one seed.

Capital City 7, Nor Cal Royals 6
In the semifinals, Capital City led for the first time in the tournament when DeSaulnier scored on a Hardin single in the bottom of the first.

A double by Ketelson and an RBI single by Barchus made the score 2-0, and another run was added when Cyrus Mooney scored from first on a Barzee double.

Nor Cal came back with a huge inning. The Royals scored their first run on consecutive base hits, but then an error and a walk led to a three-run home run to put the Royals in front.

The Black Sox trailed, 6-3, heading into the final frame. But Barchus started the inning with a single to center. Then with runners on first and third with one out, DeSaulnier delivered an RBI single.

Following a fly out to left, the Black Sox were down to their last out. Barzee came up with an RBI  to bring the game within one run. Hardin was intentionally walked, bringing up Goff, who came through with a line drive single to tie the game. The winning run scored on a Ketelson liner.

Capital City 7, Redding Vipers 6
In a rematch of the Sox’s toughest pool play game, Capital City trailed 6-2 heading into the bottom of the third of the championship game.

But in the third, Mooney scored on a double by Barchus and Klampe followed with an RBI single to make it 6-4.

In the sixth, DeSaulnier was hit by pitch and Ketelson followed with a drag bunt for a single. Both runners advanced on an errant throw by the pitcher. Barzee ripped an RBI single, then Hardin laced a ball to the wall to put the winning run at third base and setting the stage for Ratliff, who followed with another RBI single to left.

In the sixth, the Vipers’ first two batters reached base. The Sox were up for the challenge, though, as Klampe came in to pitch for the first time in the tournament. He struck out the cleanup hitter and then induced a double-play grounder.

With the win, “the Sox claimed our third championship and ended our season in amazing fashion, with a 5-0 record in Redding,” said manager Scott Barchus.

The Capital City roster includes Andrew Ketelson, Connor Goff, Ben DeSaulnier, Travis Klampe, Trent Hardin, Alex Barzee, Cody Ratliff, Connor Suing, Jordan Barchus, Daniel Zavala, Cyrus Mooney and Zach Hammerschmith. The team is coached by Scott Barchus, Justin Barchus, David Zavala, Willy Goff, and Mark Hardin.

Backyard burn starts two-alarm fire last week

Fire consumed a shed and large bushes last week. (submitted photo)

At 10:05 p.m. Saturday, July 31, Keizer district firefighters responded to a shed fire at 4453 18th Avenue NE. [MAP: 2]

Crews arrived to find a sotrage shed and tall arborvitae bushes on fire.

A second alarm was called for more personnel due to the fire spreading from the shed to neighboring properties.

Fire crews then began an aggressive attack of the shed fire. The second alarm engine company extinguished arborvitae bushes engulfed in fire on an adjacent property.

The situation was under control in 25 minutes.

The shed is owned by Adam and Cheryl Krein who were at home at the time of the fire. Damage to the shed is estimated at $5,000 as the fire damaged the entire structure and caused $2,000 in damage to the contents. No injuries were reported.

During the investigation, Adam Krein reported he had burned material in a burn barrel in the backyard earlier in the day. From the location of the barrel, associated fire damage and homeowner statements, Keizer Fire District determined the fire to be accidental.

The Keizer Fire District reminds residents that backyard burning is prohibited within the city limits.

– Lance Masterson