Oakland resident recalls years as local air traffic reporter

Photo by D. Ross Cameron


OAKLAND TRIBUNE: July 13, 2012

She was our eye in the sky for 12 years. Oakland Realtor and longtime broadcaster Katie O’Shea took her last look at traffic from the seat of a Cessna, June 30, after KGO Radio eliminated airborne traffic reports in a cost-cutting move under new ownership.

It was the end of an era for the venerable news-talk station, and O’Shea could see it coming. “With cameras everywhere and people calling in — I think it’s a dying breed,” she says of the concept of traffic reports from a chopper or plane. “It’s still great for covering fires and protests — stories that filter over to news.” Continue reading

Driving a Duck Boat – all it’s quacked up to be – and more

Doug Perry, of Alameda, stands in front of an amphibious vehicle where he works for Ride the Ducks, a company that takes tourists on a tour on the streets and in the waters in San Francisco, Calif., on Friday, Feb. 24, 2012. (Ray Chavez/Staff)

ALAMEDA JOURNAL: March 8, 2012

You think you’ve got a tough commute? Try driving a boatload of people around San Francisco — then ending up in the Bay.

Alamedan Doug Perry works for Ride the Ducks, the company that takes tourists on those curious white boats on wheels. They’re actually updated versions of World War 2 amphibious vehicles that motor down city streets and then take to the water like — you guessed it — ducks.

Driving one is harder than it looks. Continue reading

Hiker to bring life-loving message to Montclair

OAKLAND TRIBUNE: February 24, 2012

What prompts a man to walk across the United States six times? Moreover, why would he wrap up his 12-year journey in Montclair?

When Steve Fugate, 65, enters the Montclair Village Saturday, he will have walked more than 30,000 miles with a singular theme: to love life. It’s an amazing mantra for a man who has had more than his share of tragedy. Continue reading

Saint Mary’s College professor inspired by Gandhi


Kusum Singh sits in a sun-kissed corner of her kitchen with the warmth of a woman completely at peace. At 78 and newly-retired from a 27-year teaching career at Saint Mary’s College, she’s entering a stage where she can listen more clearly to her heart. “In every little thing, I find peace and joy,” said Singh, who spent much of her academic life studying the work of Gandhi. “I used to have to prepare so much for class. Now I just sit and enjoy my reading and writing.”  Continue reading

Oakland immigrant achieves American dream

OAKLAND TRIBUNE: June 24, 2011

Alice Ly lives to make people happy. In fact, it’s been her life’s dream since coming to America from Vietnam at the age of 19. Last month, it all came together when she opened Natural Nails Plus on Grand Avenue in Oakland.

What makes this shop different from the dozens of other nail salons in Oakland is Ly’s story. She was 9 when her father left Vietnam on a small, crowded boat for America. He would carve out a new life on Oahu, then send for his wife and three daughters. Ly thought the day would never come, but her family was finally reunited a decade later. Continue reading