Marital Status: Married
Occupation: Housewife and busy lady.
Do you have children? Yes, numerous.
How long have you lived in Pomona? About five years.
What brought you here? My husband teaches at Garey High. We decided to move here because it was an area that we could afford and we wanted to live near my husband’s workplace and have more interaction with his students’ community.
What is the best thing about living in Pomona? I have been so inspired by some of the Pomona residents. Some people living here are truly striving to be a positive part of this community. I have seen people sacrificially giving of their time, money, and focus here. They don’t “have” to live here, but they choose to anyway. That has been so encouraging.
Where are your favorite places to be in Pomona? I love to eat at Merendero (mmm, chips!), I love the nature at Bonelli Park, and I love bagging bulk items at Winco.
What is the worst thing about living here? The violence here is heart-breaking and, as a mother of young children, it is a source of worry and stress. I have wept over the bullet-caused deaths that have occurred here. On another subject, it is quite lame that we don’t have enough bike lanes here, given the number of bike riding folk here. It seems like paint on the road is coming though.
Can you talk about one significant event that has happened during your time here in Pomona? The shooting death of youth pastor Daniel Diaz deeply affected me. I was nursing my newborn baby girl late that night, and was awake to hear the gunshots that killed him. I was certain they were gunshots, yet I didn’t call the police because, honestly, I didn’t have any clear info to report. I wasn’t even sure what direction the shots were coming from. I told my husband about the shots, but it wasn’t until we read the news online the next day that we realized what truly happened, and how awful it was.
My husband went to the memorial, where Diaz’s mother spoke. He told me how the mother spoke toward her son’s killer, whoever and wherever he was, and told him that if her son had met him (the murderer), that he would have loved him. He would have been his friend and showed him that there was a better life for him. I wept for his mother, for her pain and loss. Daniel seemed to be a man that was trying to follow Christ and be a conduit for positive change in the world, in my neighborhood even. In the weeks and months following his death I would be overcome with tears just thinking about what happened. It came to mind a lot, at odd times. This was the first murder I have ever “witnessed”, albeit audibly, not visibly. I grieved for him and his family and I hope he entered into heaven recognized as a “good and faithful servant”.
How has living in Pomona changed you? I’ve prayed more for this city in general than any other place I’ve lived. I’ve become aware of how crucial local leadership is, and how much they influence my daily life. I’ve met wonderful people here and come face to face with, and made progress standing against, my fear of stray dogs.
How have you changed Pomona? I think I’ve brightened people’s day. My husband and I ride around town in an unusual bike train with our children. One time, outside a liquor store, a homeless man (or at least a very homeless-looking man) saw us ride by and pointed at us and laughed quite loudly. I take that as evidence that we brightened his day. I assume we’ve spread the laughs to others as well.
Pomona’s city motto is “Vibrant, Safe and Beautiful”. What motto would you choose for Pomona? “Vibrant, Diverse, and Ready”
Any last thoughts you’d like to share? Whether I continue to live here or not, this beautiful/ugly city will have a special place in my heart.
.com plug: When I get around to it, you can find me blogging at geibeltribe.wordpress.com