I want to publicly thank David Glasson, city manager and volunteer Long Beach firefighter, and JP Phillips, volunteer Long Beach firefighter, Joseph Wiley, a teenage bystander, and Cheyenne Crandall, an employee of the Long Beach branch of the Bank of the Pacific, for the roles they played in rescuing 24 kites from the tops of pine trees. The kitemakers who made the kites had signed the kites they made. All friends of mine, some of these kitemakers are no longer with us, making replacement of their kites impossible. Without the compassion and help of David Glasson, many of those kites would still adorn the tops of the pine trees.
On Monday of the Washington State International Kite Festival I was flying a train of 58 rectangular kites as part of the festival. A line broke due to abrasion of the flying line and the upper part of the train tumbled through the sky, coming to rest in the treetops east of the Shoreview Condominiums parking lot and north of 7th Street. Several kite-flying friends from the Goat Hill Gang and I retrieved 13 kites but could not reach the remaining 24. I had given them up for lost.
On Friday my wife Ginnie, an elected officer of our condominium association, went to The Bank of the Pacific to sign a signature card and spoke with Cheyenne Crandall. Cheyenne immediately picked up the phone and called city hall. An appointment was made with David Glasson, city manager. When Ginnie and I met with him he offered to bring the Long Beach ladder fire truck to the scene of the kite stranding after work. JP Phillips retrieved most kites from the bucket of the truck and eventually climbed a tree to pick out another six kites. An innocent bystander, Joseph Wiley was persuaded by his grandmother to climb several other trees that could not be reached by the fire truck boom.
All kites were removed from the trees but there are three kites that have not been found. If anyone finds a rectangular black kite with a hole in the center and colored circles sewn on the kite, please drop it off at the World Kite Museum on Sid Snyder Road. I would appreciate it greatly.
I have participated in all 37 years of the kite festival and have been a property owner in Seaview for 17 of those years. This experience has made me very appreciative of the people we have in the peninsula community. Again, David, JP, Joe, and Cheyenne, you have my sincerest thank you for your efforts.
Rod and Ginnie Beamguard