Portraits: Pictures of People

Related posts: Nice Things People Said About Khari Johnson Top of the Food Chain: Great White Sharks and People

Photo credit: Ninha Morandini

Ecological ‘Heart Attack’ Feared if IB Sand Closes the Tijuana River

Published Feb. 1, 2013 by Imperial Beach Patch. Winner of 1st Place, San Diego Press Club Awards in General News, Daily Newspapers and Websites category.  Ponding water that seeps below Seacoast Drive homes and condos after a sand replenishment project has roused residents and beachgoers. But environmental workers are worried, too—that the sand could move south […]


Through the Cracks: Following Trends in Crowdfunding Journalism

I will elaborate more on why I started this blog in the future but for now go check out the Through the Cracks blog at Through the Crack’s aim is to share compelling, innovative or otherwise interesting stories being told by crowdfunded journalism ventures and the continued rise in influence of crowdfunding in journalism. Related […]


Video: Police Sergeant Seen Pulling Woman by Hair Is Subject of Internal Probe

Published Oct. 20, 2013 by Imperial Beach Patch. A San Diego police sergeant shown pulling a distraught woman by the hair at a fire scene is the subject of an internal police probe, authorities said Saturday. He also may be sued, the victim told U-­T San Diego. “Due to allegations arising from this incident, we […]


Nice Things People Said About Khari Johnson

See Also: Goodbye from IB Patch Editor Khari Johnson Since I founded Imperial Beach Patch in fall 2010 until I was laid off last Wednesday I worked with freelancers and other Patch employees to publish thousands of articles about the city of 26,000 in the very southwest corner of continental United States. People were pretty appreciative and […]

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Video: Dynamite Downs Eyesore Power Plant, Sends Booms Across South Bay

South Bay Power Plant Implosion from Khari Johnson on Vimeo. Published Feb. 2, 2013 by Imperial Beach Patch. After 50 years in operation and 55 years on San Diego Bay, the South Bay Power Plant came down Saturday morning in an implosion that took less than two minutes. With noises like rolling thunder or the […]


Portraits: Pictures of People

  • A man and barber focus intently on hair at New Chicago Barbershop in San Francisco’s Fillmore District on July 29, 2005.
  • A U.S. Marine veteran touches a wall of photos hung on the wall of VFW Post 5477 in Imperial Beach, Calif. in search of a friend killed in Iraq. Joe "Tiger" Patrick carried a banner with a photo of every soldier killed in Iraq and Afghanistan across America.
  • Teunis van der Poel lights coal for hookah in a tunnel in Aalborg, Denmark on June 17, 2006.
  • A woman waves a “CHANGE” sign and smiles as Senator Barack Obama accepts the nomination of the Democratic Party to become President of the United States on Aug. 28, 2008.
  • State Senator Juan Vargas arrives in Golden Hall in San Diego with a group of chanting supporters on Nov. 6, 2012. Vargas became the first Hispanic representative of a congressional district in San Diego County.
  • Surfers head for the waves Oct. 17, 2011 in Imperial Beach, Calif.
  • A competitor in the first annual Katy’s Endless Summer Grom Classic on Oct. 17, 2010.
  • A skater takes a break from riding in the bowl at the grand opening of Imperial Beach Skate Park on Nov. 21, 2010.
  • Soap box derby competitors line up for head-to-head action on May 30, 2010 in San Diego.
  • Soap box derby competitors line up for head-to-head action on May 30, 2010 in San Diego.
  • A Native American man dances at Great Western Days on June 5, 2010 in El Cajon.
  • Ahead of their first game in the Lingerie Football League, Rica Manalastas and Tiffany Harrison of the San Diego Seduction look on at a team practice at La Jolla High School in August 2009.
  • A woman lingers as the crowd begins to disperse at the inauguration of President Barack Obama on Jan. 20, 2009.
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  • Members of the band SFK on Newport Avenue in San Diego's Ocean Beach neighborhood on Nov. 2, 2009.
  • A ferris wheel spins at a carnival in the San Diego neighborhood of Nestor on July 14, 2011.
  • Majur Malou immigrated from Sudan to San Diego and leads Episcopal Refugee Network.
  • Majur Malou immigrated from Sudan to San Diego and leads Episcopal Refugee Network.
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  • A man sells glowing swords on Hollywood Boulevard in Hollywood, Calif.
  • A woman at a protest of Proposition 8
  • A man with his face painted makes faces for children at a Sinterklauss parade in Utrecht, Holland. The Dutch paint their faces black every year to play the character of Zwarte Piet, a slave or servant who helps Saint Nicholas deliver gifts. Some call the practice tradition while others, including a high-ranking member of the United Nations, call the practice racist and a minstrel show akin to the kind seen in the United States to exaggerate the features of people of African descent.
  • Calvin Banks and his mare Carmen on the Washington Mall on Jan. 18, 2009 ahead of the inauguration of Barack Obama as President of the United States. Banks rode his horse from Maryland where he is a member of the Maryland Buffalo Soldiers Horse Calvary.
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  • Sam Kelete works a punching bag in Daly City, Calif. on July 11, 2005.
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City of Hope

Over the course of the last five years, some years more than others, I took pictures at City of Hope International (COHI) Church in San Diego. The Pentecostal church is led by Rev. Terrell Fletcher, a former San Diego Chargers running back.

In 2012 City of Hope International combined with Faith Chapel to become COHI at Faith Chapel and is located at 4999 Holly Dr. in San Diego.

Woman’s Death After Chemical Spill Leads to Search for Answers

Joye Goodwin-1Published Feb. 10, 2010 by San Diego News Network (

Joye Goodwin moved to Valley Center to retire with her daughter Hope two decades ago. Before that, she was a nurse for more than 40 years and founder of Children Having Children, a non-profit assisting parents 13 to 24-years-old reach for life beyond parenthood in southeast San Diego.

Since moving there, together the two raised championship horses and Great Danes, grew dozens of organic fruits and vegetables and were about to go into the business of farming organic garlic and Sea buckthorn.

But on Nov. 16, 2006 an EDCO garbage truck lifting a dumpster in their back yard ruptured a hydraulic line, spraying between 15 to 36 gallons (actual amount is disputed by both sides) of hydraulic fluid on to the ground, into the air and across the property.

Joye, who was gardening outside and already had trouble breathing, may have inhaled some of the fluid.

“We could smell the fumes in the house for weeks,” Hope said.

Since then, the mature Cottonwood trees near the spill died, as did fruit trees and crops planted in the ground further away. The Ice Man, a 23-year-old Irish bred Thoroughbred, had to be put down. Alraune, a German bred Holsteiner, may have cancer. Another horse lost 300 lbs. Hope said.

Then this spring, her health deteriorated, Joye died in the morning hours of the first day of spring.


Ecological ‘Heart Attack’ Feared if IB Sand Closes the Tijuana River

Published Feb. 1, 2013 by Imperial Beach Patch. Winner of 1st Place, San Diego Press Club Awards in General News, Daily Newspapers and Websites category. 

Ponding water that seeps below Seacoast Drive homes and condos after a sand replenishment project has roused residents and beachgoers.

But environmental workers are worried, too—that the sand could move south and block the mouth of the Tijuana River.

If the sand stopped flow of the river, said the manager of the Tijuana Slough National Wildlife Refuge, it could threaten endangered species and other wildlife in the Tijuana River Valley.

“It’s like your circulatory system,” said Brian Collins, the refuge manager. “You don’t want it blocked. It causes a heart attack. Or like asthma. You want to be able to breathe, and my analogy is you want the water to be able to go in and out.”


Avid Fisherman Killed in Trailer Park Fire Remembered

Trailer Fire Imperial Beach


Published March 22, 2013 by Imperial Beach Patch.

A man who died when his trailer caught fire in the Imperial Beach Trailer Park​ in the early morning March 8 has been identified as Daniel Martin Drake, according to the County of San Diego Medical Examiner’s Office.

An investigation into the cause of the fire is ongoing, said Detective Anthony Portillo with the San Diego County Sheriff’s Department Bomb and Arson Unit.

“It appears as though it was an accidental fire. We can’t really nail down the cause right now, but were still doing some testing,” he said.

Family and friends remember the man who lived in Imperial Beach the past two decades as a hard worker, an avid fishermen and a good man.

“It’s so weird. It’s still so surreal to me,” his oldest daughter Angela Bain-­Trujillo told IB Patch.

Drake was born Dec. 23, 1950 in Lapeer, MI and moved to Southern California with his parents as a boy. He came to Imperial Beach in the 1990s to be closer to his mother and sister after a divorce, Bain-­Trujillo said.

Drake worked in construction, as a carpenter and repaired tractor trailers traveling through Riverside, CA, she said.

While visiting his trailer park after the fire, Drake’s family were told by his friend and neighbor Adolfo Franco that the two went skydiving six years ago. They jumped out of a plane together though Drake used a mobility scooter since his hip was injured in a car accident.

“There was a lot of yelling, you know, and a lot of joking and such, but yeah, he did it,” Franco said.

“Steven just started crying,” said Sal Trujillo, Drake’s son-­in-­law. Drake’s son Steven went skydiving around the same time but never thought to ask his dad because of his hip. Despite the handicap, Franco said Drake would go horseback riding and regularly make trips to the Imperial Beach Pier to fish.

“Other than that, he was a happy­-go-­lucky guy. He loved playing dominoes and drinking beer,” Franco said. Eileen McGrath manages the trailer park and knew Drake for more than a decade.

“As the saying goes, ‘May you be in Heaven half an hour before the devil knows you’re dead,’ and I think Danny made it,” she said. “Danny was always well liked by everyone in this community.”


Denmark Is in the Eye of the Storm Over Muslim Cartoons

Published Feb. 26, 2006 by San Francisco Chronicle.

Aarhus, Denmark — The questions about my personal safety over the last few weeks have been constant. My mother, other family members and friends back home in the United States are all concerned about how edgy it has become here in Aarhus, the home of the now infamous Jyllands-Posten, the newspaper that ran cartoon images of Muhammad.

But every time I hear my mother’s worrying voice, my face winces and I wonder why they think I’m in such danger. I am an African American student studying in Aarhus, a town of about a quarter-million people and Denmark’s second-largest city after Copenhagen.

The images coming in from around the world are amazing. Frantic mobs of people waving green and white Muslim flags while burning red and white Danish ones. Embassies burn while enormous crowds of people shout unsettling, threatening things.

That is a sharp contrast to what’s going on in Aarhus. No mobs have taken the city by storm. None of the town’s buildings has been set ablaze by angry or radical Muslims in retaliation to the offensive cartoons. Shop windows remain intact.