May 23, 2022 Breaking News, Latest News, and Videos

Mexican-American War Hero Tops Buffer Park Name List:

Following a month of garnering suggestions from the community, Santa Monica’s Recreation & Parks Commission voted on war hero Joe Gandara to be honored in namesake at the nicknamed Buffer Park.

Narrowing the naming list down to three, the commission voted 5-1 Thursday, Nov. 20, to submit Joe Gandarda Park to City Council as their prime pick.

“In this case, I believe we want to reflect a salient point in the history of the Pico neighborhood,” explained Commissioner Phil Brock. “The soldier whose name we chose is a native of Santa Monica who grew up on Frank Street, a few blocks away from the new park, at the start of WWII. He was private who fought for America and died saving his comrades in battle.”

Gandara went unrecognized for his bravery and devotion to the country because of racial prejudice at the time. He served with Company D, 2nd Battalion, 507th Parachute Infantry Regiment, 17th Airborne Division.

President Obama posthumously presented Pvt. Gandara with the Medal of Honor earlier this year. He was recognized for his actions during combat operations in Amfreville, France, on June 9, 1944.

“His story will provide inspiration to children in the Pico area. His history will instill pride in a mostly ethnic neighborhood of our city and the late recognition of his bravery will serve as a lesson in the prejudice that existed in our country,” Brock said.

Coming in second place in the name game was Heroes Park, suggested as a general honor to all in the city who have lost their lives in the line of duty, followed by Ishahara Park in third, honoring George H. Ishihara, a distinguished past Santa Monica resident and WWII hero.

“There was a spirited debate and place names were discussed as well as joining the park to Stewart St Park,” Brock said. “The names of early Santa Monica Mexican ranchero owners, Reyes and Marquez families, and other local historical figures were also brought up. Ultimately, Joe Gandara represents the working class-can do spirit that has always existed in the Pico Neighborhood. It is fitting that Buffer Park become Gandara Park.”

The standard practice of naming Santa Monica parks as per their geographical location was ruled out in this instance, as there already is Exposition Park in the city and Stewart Street Park is close by.

Buffer Park is a 2.35 acre park that will be developed on Exposition Boulevard between Stewart Street and Dorchester Avenue. The community submitted a total of 135 name suggestions to be selected from, with 88 being distinct, according to the City.

Name suggestions were collected via online surveys, paper surveys at local library branches, a table at Pico Farmers’ Market each Saturday in October, and emails to Pico Neighborhood churches and schools.

The name of Joe Gandara Park will now be presented to Santa Monica City Council for a final vote.

in News
Related Posts

Los Angeles Metro Sees 15.9 Percent Increase in Median Rent

May 20, 2022

May 20, 2022

Median rent of $2,258, according to recent report By Dolores Quintana The ongoing pandemic has exacerbated the issues of housing...

New Renderings for Frank Gehry Hotel Development in Santa Monica

May 20, 2022

May 20, 2022

Project would include hotel, apartments, retail and a museum By Dolores Quintana Slowly but surely, plans for a  Frank Gehry-designed...

Shared Mobility Plummets in Santa Monica

May 20, 2022

May 20, 2022

Recent report also shows that nearly half of riders make over $100,000 By Sam Catanzaro Shared mobility use in Santa...

Christopher Dishlip Selected as Santa Monica’s New Assistant Director of Public Works

May 20, 2022

May 20, 2022

Public Works Director Rick Valte announced the selection of Christopher Dishlip as Santa Monica’s new Assistant Director of Public Works....

Letter to Editor: Response to Himmelrich’s “We Walk the Talk” Column

May 20, 2022

May 20, 2022

By Beau Marks As a Santa Monica resident, I am dismayed by Sue Himmelrich’s response (“We Walk the Talk,” Santa...

Motional And UberEats Launch Autonomous Deliveries In Santa Monica

May 18, 2022

May 18, 2022

There Are Plans For Expansion Into The Rest Of Los Angeles Motional, a global driverless technology leader, and Uber Technologies...

Winston Pies Opening Third Location In Santa Monica

May 18, 2022

May 18, 2022

The restaurant used to be known as ButterCrust Pies Winston Pies is staying in Santa Monica when opening their third...

Only 10 Vaquita Porpoises Survive, But The Species May Not Be Doomed

May 17, 2022

May 17, 2022

Hope remains for the porpoise species not only survive but thrive with human help. By Stuart Wolpert The vaquita porpoise,...

The American Cinematheque Brings “Bleak Week” To Santa Monica’s Aero Theatre And The Los Feliz Three Theatre

May 17, 2022

May 17, 2022

33 Films From 18 Countries In One Week. By Dolores Quintana Sometimes when things are tough and you’re feeling down,...

Man Who Murdered His Family Members Pleads Guilty To Five Other Killings

May 16, 2022

May 16, 2022

Escobar injured an additional seven other people as well.  By Dolores Quintana A man, Ramon Escobar, has pleaded guilty to...

The price of gasoline in Los Angeles County Has Experienced The Largest Increase Since February

May 16, 2022

May 16, 2022

Gasoline prices in Orange County Have Also Increased By Dolores Quintana Regular self-serve gasoline in the county of Los Angeles...

Santa Monica Travel Summit Of 2022 Returns To Take On Tomorrow

May 16, 2022

May 16, 2022

The Event Was Held At The Jonathan Club On Santa Monica Beach By Staff Writer The 2022 Santa Monica Tourism...

City Council Extends Santa Monica’s Parklet Program: Santa Monica Beat – May 16th, 2022

May 16, 2022

May 16, 2022

Local news and culture in under 5 minutes.* City Council Extends Santa Monica’s Parklet Program * Santa Monica High School Students...

1221 Ocean Avenue Complex Sold For Record Price

May 16, 2022

May 16, 2022

Sold for a record price of $330 million. By Dolores Quintana The Irvine Company has sold 1221 Ocean Avenue to...

Office Construction Is Starting To Rise In Los Angeles

May 15, 2022

May 15, 2022

Property vacancies are still affecting growth.  By Dolores Quintana In March, the Los Angeles Metropolitan area had 3.2 million square...