Notes ‘stark contrast’ between Ballona and beach bike paths

To the Editor:

I have been riding the beach bike path and feel fortunate to live near the most interesting and beautiful section of the entire 22 miles of the path.

I usually start at Playa del Rey, ride along the Marina del Rey entrance channel to Fisherman’s Village and on through Marina del Rey docks to Venice Beach. I then continue on to Santa Monica Pier.

Your photos of the Ballona Creek Bike Path in Del Rey (April 17th Argonaut) illustrated the stark contrast of this bike path that cuts off from the beach bike path in Marina del Rey.

Tourists should be warned that the Ballona Creek Bicycle Path from Culver City to Marina del Rey is no place for a “pleasure” bike ride. It’s very uninviting, like a ride through an industrial park. Also, I am told it is dangerous.

This opinion was formed by riding the Ballona Creek Bicycle Path twice in 30 years, the last time a few years ago after reading news stories about the great improvements, of which I could find none.

Gene Patrick, Los Angeles

Calls Santa Monica Airport ‘a jewel in the city’s crown’

To the Editor:

Regarding the letter in the April 17th Argonaut, “City of Santa Monica and FAA need to recognize that airport pollution is an issue”:

Santa Monica Airport has always been a jewel in the city’s crown. To diminish it in any way would be irresponsible.

In addition to aircraft bringing business and employment to the Westside area, the airport provides vital medical and emergency services. There are many pilots at Santa Monica Airport who make emergency medical flights on a regular basis. Emergency Volunteer Air Corps (EVAC) is a volunteer city-sponsored flying organization. It provides airlifts for fire, police and emergency city personnel in the event of a disaster, such as the quake that we had 13 years ago when the freeways were closed.

EVAC flies to designated airports and takes these people in and out of the city, as most of them cannot afford to live in Santa Monica.

How soon we forget the National Guard’s arrival in a fleet of C-130s at Santa Monica Airport during the tense period of the Los Angeles riots.

Edith Warren, Mar Vista

Cancer chair says she is honored to present award to Sen. Oropeza

To the Editor:

One of the most rewarding things about being a part of the American Cancer Society is knowing that I am doing my part to fight a disease that claims the lives of 150 people every day. Advocacy plays a major role in this battle, and legislators hold the key to crucial changes needed to eradicate cancer.

On Tuesday, April 15th, I had the honor of presenting one of these legislators with the first-ever California Advocacy Leadership Award from the Society’s sister advocacy organization, American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network (ACS CAN).

This is the highest recognition given by the organization in California to government officials with an outstanding record of leadership in the fight against cancer. As such, Senator Jenny Oropeza [California State Senator for the 28th District, which includes much of The Argonaut coverage area] was the most fitting choice as the first recipient of the award.

As both a champion in the state Legislature on cancer issues, and a cancer survivor herself, Oropeza is a shining example of what this award stands for. Her successful legislation to ban smoking in cars with children under the age of 18 was a landmark victory in tobacco control in the California Legislature in 2007.

We at the American Cancer Society and ACS CAN continue to honor Senator Oropeza and the work she does, and we urge other legislators to join her in this life-saving mission.

Carol Jackson, Chair of the Board American Cancer Society, California Division, Long Beach