Volume XV Issue 145 | Friday, February 17th, 2023

Facebook  Twitter  Instagram  Youtube  
facebookcoverwinter image
dispatchestop-1 image

The icy, cold Susan River this week from the Richmond Road Bridge

Dispatches from the Lucky Land of Lassen

By Jeremy Couso

SusanvilleStuff Publisher and Editor

Our house burned down one time and it was, without question, one of the worst things that has ever happened in my life.

There we were – Marshel, Robbie, Jessie and I with absolutely nothing. No insurance to cover the losses, no savings to blunt the sudden crisis and every single thing we owned, except what we were wearing when we ran out of the house that night, just gone. Poof!

dispatchesfeature-300x300 image

It has been nearly twenty years since our fire and the scars it left, both financially and mentally, are still there for me. I still tense up hearing the ‘crackle’ of a fire. Still hate that sharp, charcoal and chemical smell of a structure fire and its aftermath. Financially, it set us back decades or more, and we still deal with money problems it created.

It was a dark time for us and in the end, what saved my family, and made it possible for us to survive, were the amazing people of our community who gave us absolutely everything.

People like Bob and Carolyn Genasci who literally gave us a place to live while we recovered.

That is one of the reasons Marshel and I try so passionately to give back to the community whenever we can. We are grateful. Oh, so grateful.

Wednesday morning, I had to go cover a fire on North Roop street, on the other side of Main Street from our office, over in the area by Jeff and Carol Fontana’s house.

It was still dark, barely 6:00a.m., and much like the night of our fire back in 2005, Chief Moore’s firefighters, along with folks from Cal-FIRE and departments around the valley, were battling freezing temperatures along with the blaze.

Hoses iced up, live electrical lines failed and dropped to the ground, at one point there was a ‘flashover’ putting firefighters in genuine danger. It was everything you don’t want to see happen in a residential structure fire.

I try and take pictures like a good news reporter should. But, after a while you just want to take a deep breath, put the camera down and look away.

For a brief time, there was even a fear that there were people still inside the burning house, which thankfully turned out to be untrue. In heroic fashion the family’s 14-year old son Silas got his little brother out of the house and warned the upstairs neighbors in time.

Unfortunately the family’s little dog Bandit escaped during the fire and they are still searching for him.

Why do I bring this all up? I have a very good reason.

The family who lived in that home on Roop Street is a nice family with people who do nice things for our community all of the time. Yet, sometimes terrible things happen to nice people, something I will just never quite understand, but I do know that together we can make a difference.

Alex and Kelli Leon, and their sons Silas and Roman, could use some help right now.

We can’t all afford to make a contribution, but if you can’t, maybe share this link around so that others can help. Each week there are around 5,000 of you who read this column, if only a fraction of you contributed it could make quite a difference.

Click here to head over to GoFundMe and make a donation.

This is something to keep in mind every time that someone in our town loses their home. Nobody goes through this and has an easy time of it. It’s up to the rest of us in the community to try and soften that blow.

A Change of Subject

I did not mean to cast such a downer mood on the morning. I actually had a cool thing planned for this morning’s column which we will run next week. I just thought it important that we help out the Leon family.

This is Pure Awesome

Abby Dunn, a Lassen High standout who is now a star adaptive athlete at University of Arizona, is someone who just radiates excellence and positivity wherever she goes and whatever she does. Her amazing personality comes shining through in a UArizona promo video posted this week to YouTube.

Go Abby!

Click here to watch the video over at YouTube

abby image

Best of Broadway Preview

So, now that I’ve told you about one of the worst parts of my job, let me tell you about one of the best!

It’s time for the annual Best of Broadway performances at the Veterans Memorial Hall and Saturday is Media Night, which means the SusanvilleStuff crew gets to go see a sneak peak at the entire show a week before anybody else gets to see it!

(Don’t tell anyone but it’s been more than a decade since I last went to an actual Best of Broadway performance, having seen every show on Media Night.)

It’s a great evening for photography. I take a fun group photo of the cast, in costume and then Marshel and I usually shoot around 2,000 pictures each to build a big gallery featuring the various musical numbers.

I love getting to hang out with all the really talented people in the cast and feeling that ‘backstage’ sort of vibe. I also get to see what my friend Mikalah, who co-directed a few of the numbers and performs in some as well, has come up with this year. It’s a lot of fun!

We will have a whole gallery of photos for you here at SusanvilleStuff next week and also, we are giving away tickets to the shows so watch for that.

johnnyjune-620x454 image

Johnny and June Forever – photo by Mrs. Couso

Johnny and June Forever

Mrs. Couso and I went to go see the live Johnny and June Forever show at the Sierra Theatre Friday and it was awesome. I had forgotten how great the place looks when the fancy-colored lights are on. Brought back Video Dance Party memories.

A lot of folks came out to see the show and I was glad it was well-attended. That bodes well for future shows and live entertainment on the lovely little stage at the theatre.

Now, I am trying to dream up a live musical show idea, just so I can have an excuse to play on that stage.

Over the years there have been a lot of neat musical acts that have come to town and played at the Sierra, I want to do that too!

If you have a good idea hit me up and let me know at jcouso@jeremycouso.com.

Until next time kids, take care of yourselves, stay warm and have a really nice weekend.

roop1 image

Early Morning Fire Destroys

Multi-Family Residence on Roop Street

Photos by Jeff Fontana

and Jeremy Couso

Firefighters were forced to fight brutal, freezing temperatures, downed power lines and a fiercely burning residential fire when they arrived early Wednesday morning at a multi-family residence on Roop Street.

The Susanville Fire Department responded to 240 N. Roop Street shortly before 6:00a.m. to find smoke and flames coming from both floors of the North side of the building and power lines down in the driveway.

firedepartmentincident image

The initial dispatch reported occupants may be in the building.

“As crews prepared to perform a primary search for possible victims,” explains Fire Captain Leon Myers, “the South portion of the structure flashed over. The engine crews pulled hose lines and worked to control the fire while protecting the exposures to the North and West sides.”

At this point in the incident, it was reported that all occupants were accounted for, and LMUD arrived on the scene to mitigate the electrical line hazard which allowed better access to the main area of the fire.

“Once the main fire was extinguished, crews worked to overhaul the structure. This involved removing portions of the collapsed roof to gain access to areas that were still burning. Once the overhaul was completed, a fire investigation began which pointed to an electrical source.”

Myers added that with freezing temperatures and all surfaces covered with ice from hose streams, slipping was a major concern and created many hazards throughout the incident.

There were no firefighter or civilian injuries. The Susanville Fire Department was supported by Cal-FIRE, CDCR Fire, the City of Susanville Natural Gas, LMUD, CAL-OES, and the Susanville Police Department.

roop6 image

Photo by Jeff Fontana

roop2 image
roop4-494x620 image

Chief Cochran Asks for Public’s

Help with Dogs-at-Large Problem

In response to concerns regarding dogs-at-large in the community, the city of Susanville Police Department and the Code Enforcement Division of the City’s Public Works Department have been actively working on the issue by increasing patrols in areas where dogs have been reported.

“The dogs are evasive and difficult for our law enforcement and animal control personnel to apprehend. The city is asking for your assistance to help identify and track the locations of these animals by utilizing the Susanville Click & Fix app,” explains Susanville Chief of Police Ryan Cochran.

policeseeking image

Your copy should address 3 key questions: Who am I writing for? (Audience) Why should they care? (Benefit) What do I want them to do here? (Call-to-Action)

Create a great offer by adding words like "free" "personalized" "complimentary" or "customized." A sense of urgency often helps readers take an action, so think about inserting phrases like "for a limited time only" or "only 7 remaining"!

Rotarians Holding Big Cornhole

Tournament this Saturday

The Susanville Rotarians are holding a big Cornhole tournament tomorrow, February 18th, with all the funds raised from the fun event going to the organization’s many local community, youth, and service projects.

The ‘Bags and Beers’ Cornhole Tournament will be held from 10:00a.m. until 6:00p.m., in Jensen Hall at the Lassen County Fairgrounds and will feature food, beer, wine and cash prizes of up to $300 for tournament winners.

First place takes home the $300, second wins $200 and third place gets $100.

cornholetourny image

You can preregister at a discount, $60 per team, by contacting a Rotarian, or you can register at the door, at 9:00a.m. the day of the event for $70 per team.

Each team member will get two beverage tickets and food, beer and wine will be available for purchase. Outside food and drink will not be allowed. You must be 14 or older to play in the tournament.

lccfiretech2023960 image
vehicleextrication300 image
forestofficesupply300 image
airport1941 image

Susanville Airport from the air, 1941

New Plan Drawn for Air Field

February 17, 1946

An entirely new plan for the Susanville airport, the third made this winter, is now before the civil aeronautics board. Submitted last week, no word has officially been received on it, although CAB officials told M. J. Tilley, city engineer, that it met the objections to former plans.

The object is to have an airport which will qualify for use by commercial planes.

If an air route is opened through this section, Susanville then could be a port of call for mail, express and passengers. The present airport is too small and lies too close to the hills on the south to meet CAB specifications.

If you are a fan of our daily history stories you should join the Lassen Historical Society! It's a fun way to be a part of our county's rich history. When you sign up you'll receive regular Historical Society newsletters with interesting stories and information. Membership is open to anyone with an interest in area history.

Through your membership you help preserve local history. You can download a membership application by clicking here.

The SusanvilleStuff Team

Jeremy Couso

Owner, Publisher and Editor

Marshel Couso

Owner and General Manager

Ray Couso

Sales and Retention Consultant

Susan Couso

Feature Writer

Terra Avilla

Feature Writer

Shelley Bennett

Feature Writer

80forbrady image

Currently Playing

Sierra Theatre

Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania

Uptown Cinemas

Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania

A Man Called Otto

Magic Mike's Last Dance

80 for Brady

Click here for showtimes

Sierra Theatre now

offers beer, wine

and mini pizzas

I used to be against organ transplants...

untilI had a change of heart!

smithweatherfeature100822 image

Today: Mostly cloudy. Slight chance of snow showers in the afternoon. Highs 37 to 47.

Tonight: Partly cloudy in the evening then clearing. Lows 13 to 23.

Saturday And Saturday Night: Clear. Highs 40 to 50. Lows 15 to 25.

Sunday And Sunday Night: Partly cloudy. Highs 45 to 55. Lows 21 to 31.

Washingtons Birthday: Mostly cloudy. Highs 44 to 54.

Congratulations to Wendy Del Burrata, the winner

of this week's Pizza Factory giveaway!

You too could win a large one-topping pizza from the Susanville or Janesville Pizza Factory locations just by entering our weekly giveaway!

Just click here and follow the link to our handy entry form. You can enter once per day from each email address. We'll announce our weekly winner right here next Monday morning.

The prize is good for take-out or dine-in orders only, sorry no delivery.

Good luck and enjoy that yummy Pizza Factory Pizza!

SusanvilleStuff WebXtra is a copyrighted feature of Couso Technology and Design