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Retired Contra Costa Sheriff Warren Rupf diagnosed with leukemia

Retired Contra Costa Sheriff Warren Rupf has been diagnosed with acute myeloid leukemia.

In his trademark, wry and witty voice, the 69-year-old East Bay native who served as his county’s sheriff for almost two decades, sent an email to friends and colleagues on Thursday.

He is exploring treatment options but the prognosis is grim for this type of cancer, he wrote.

“While rather morbid, this may be the only good news,” Rupf wrote. “When you buy this brand, you move rather quickly from check in to check out.”

Yes, Warren was an elected official and as a reporter, I kept my eye on him when he was in office.

But as I grew to know him over the years, I became terribly fond of him. When my son went into law enforcement, the sheriff offered his support and always remembered to ask about the young officer’s progress in the California Highway Patrol. (Warren tested with CHP as a young man but Contra Costa County called him first.)

From me and my family, Warren, we wish you and your family fair winds and following seas as you  chart your way through this hazardous passage.

But as always, his own words are far better than anything I could come up with. I included the photos we used for a profile story on him when he retired in 2010 but here’s what he wrote via email:

Lt. Warren Rupf circa 1975

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Shipmates and others with whom I have shared so much,

 I choose an e-mail to share what follows to reduce the likelihood that the message gets caught up in politics or locker room editing (also an opportunity to respond to the charges that Marines cannot read or write. ) Should you choose to offer any response, it also offers an easy to schedule means. I love you all but I am not excited by the idea of putting you (or me) on a path filled with sympathy cards and grown-man tears.

While some tests are still being evaluated and treatment options explored, both are rather grim. I have acute myeloid leukemia. While rather morbid, this may be the only good news. When you buy this brand, you move rather quickly from check-in to check-out. I hate long, slow-moving lines.

Warren Rupf as a young Marine

Some will say that I should have retired earlier and enjoyed the good life. I say: Poppycock, my life could not have been any better. Be it Marine Corps , Office of the Sheriff , going toe-to-toe with a real labor leader or a beer at the slop chute with an old-school reporter, you made my list of those whom made my life one of few regrets.

I know that there are good men with whom I have lost electronic contact please consider sharing this with them as your paths cross and offer them my regards.

Semper Fidelis,

Warren

 

UPDATE: 3:46 p.m. Contra Costa Sheriff Dave Livingston sent this message to his department and other county offices:

As you may have heard by now, our friend and colleague, retired Sheriff Warren Rupf, has been diagnosed with acute myeloid leukemia. He is currently undergoing treatment but is facing many challenges as he fights this disease.

Yesterday he shared his condition with close friends and relatives. His family has asked that we respect his privacy during these difficult times. He is not able to accept visitors or phone calls.

Please keep Sheriff Rupf, his wife Carole, and his entire family in your thoughts and prayers.

I will update you when we have more information.

Thank you.

David Livingston

Sheriff-Coroner

 

 

30

ConFire Chief Louder braves Contra Costa Taxpayers Association

ConFire Chief Daryl Louder will walk through a wall of fire to rescue women, children and kittens.

But is he brave enough to speak at a breakfast of the Contra Costa Taxpayers Association, whose members have been asking tough questions about his agency’s drive to put a parcel tax measure on the November ballot?

Yep. I saw it for myself. And you can watch it, too. Contra Costa Taxpayers Association Executive Director Kris Hunt is acting as the moderator.

Click here for the main part of his speech.

Click here for the Q&A segment that followed his comments.

What comes through loud and clear in the chief’s presentation is that he views his role as that of an expert on fire protection. And he is giving the district’s elected officials and its residents his best professional advice about how to protect the community from loss of life and property due to fire.

The reasons behind district’s financial woes are numerous, pre-date his arrival two years ago and largely outside his control but what he does know, he told the taxpayers, is that without more money, he will have to shut down seven to 10 out 28 fire stations.

“I cannot protect the community with 10 fewer fire stations,” Louder said.

The county board of supervisors is looking at placing on the November ballot a fire safety tax. The details are still being worked out but supervisors directed staff to look at a $75 annual parcel tax. It would expire in seven years. Seniors age 65 and older would be exempt. The money would be used to keep open the district’s 28 fire stations but not much else.

The board has set a public hearing to vote on the tax measure for July 31, 2012, at 10:30 a.m. in the supervisors’ chambers at 651 Pine St. in Martinez.

 

4

Candace Andersen takes oath of office in Contra Costa County

Candace Andersen

Elegantly attired in red in honor of the late Supervisor Gayle Uilkema, former Danville Mayor Candace Andersen was sworn into office Tuesday as the District 2 representative on the Contra Costa County board of supervisors. (Click here to read story at ContraCostaTimes.com.)

Click here to watch video of Andersen take the oath of office with Clerk-Recorder Steve Weir.

Click here to watch video of Andersen’s post-oath comments.

Andersen, 51, was overwhelmingly elected to the District 2 seat in the June primary election, beating out two competitors.

But her official term wasn’t slated to start until Jan. 1, which would have left the seat vacant for more than six months. In the wake of her decisive win, Andersen, other elected officials and labor leaders petitioned Gov. Jerry Brown for an early appointment, which he did late Monday.

Andersen took the oath of office before a crowd of supporters, her husband, Phil, and former Danville Town Council colleagues.

District 2 includes the San Ramon Valley, Alamo, Lafayette, Orinda, Moraga and Rossmoor.

“You will learn that Candace is truly a good person,” Danville Vice Mayor Newell Arnerich told the supervisors and the audience. “She is easy to get along with. She is bright. She has a smile even in the most difficult of times.”

Andersen expressed sadness at leaving the Danville council, where she has served since 2003. And she paid homage to Uilkema, who died in May after a battle with cancer but had endorsed the Danville mayor as her replacement on the board.

Uilkema offered invaluable advice on numerous fronts before her death, Andersen said, including a recommendation that she always keep a classic red suit in her closet for auspicious occasions.

“I have high heels to fill,” said the attorney and mother of six. “But I am looking forward to representing not just Danville but the entire county.”

Before her election to the Danville council, Andersen was elected to the Morgan Hill council.

She began her legal career as a clerk and deputy prosecuting attorney for the city and county of Honolulu in her home state of Hawaii, from 1983 to 1987. She earned her law degree at Brigham Young University.

16

Contra Costa public employee union seeks Andersen appointment

Candace Andersen

Contra Costa Public Employees Union Local One may have endorsed her opponent but now that Danville Mayor Candace Andersen has won the District 2 supervisor seat in a landslide, the labor group is graciously asking Gov. Jerry Brown to appoint the victor.

“Ms. Andersen was decisively elected to the District 2 seat,” wrote Local One General Manager Larry Edginton in a letter to the governor’s office. “The voters of that district have spoken. They have elected Mayor Andersen to represent them on the Board of Supervisors. There is no reason not to fill it or appoint someone else.”

The Contra Costa Building Trades and Assemblywoman Joan Buchanan, D-Alamo — both endorsed Contra Costa Community College District board President Tomi Van de Brooke — have also sent letters recommending the appointment.

Local One, which represents 2,000 Contra Costa County employees, rightly argues that District 2 residents deserve a representative as soon as possible and the restoration of a fifth supervisor will avert any potential tie votes that might create governance programs.

Andersen beat Van de Brooke on June 5 by 31 percentage points. She will take the office held by the late Gayle Uilkema, who intended to retire at the end of the year but died in May from ovarian cancer.

The district office has been without a full-time supervisor since last winter, however. Uilkema had been unable to work for much of the year although she tried to keep up from home until very close to her death.

Andersen’s term doesn’t  officially start until Jan. 1, 2013, but the governor could appoint her to the post early. As a general law county, only the governor may fill vacant supervisor positions.

The Contra Costa Board of Supervisors is expected to approve a similar request of the governor at its June 26 meeting.

There’s no official word out of the governor’s office yet although nothing is likely to happen until after the election results have been certified.

But there is no obvious barrier to the appointment. Partisanship is unlikely to disqualify the Republican mayor because she won by such a vast margin. She also generally opposes new taxes but says she hasn’t taken a position on the governor’s tax initiative, hasn’t signed a “no new taxes pledge” and says she won’t, and has supported all the school bonds and tax measures in the San Ramon Valley.

“I’ve been in contact with the governor’s appointment in office to find out what they need from me,” Andersen said. “I’m hopeful it will happen in July but it is in the governor’s hands.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

2

Former Hercules Mayor Joe Eddy McDonald dies

Joe Eddy McDonald, the lively former Hercules mayor who leveraged a personal tragedy to make Highway 4 in West Contra Costa County safer for all drivers, has died.

Read my colleague Tom Lochner’s story here. http://www.contracostatimes.com/news/ci_20832382/former-hercules-mayor-joe-eddy-mcdonald-dies?IADID=Search-www.contracostatimes.com-www.contracostatimes.com

 

 

21

More CC supervisor mailers, these pro-Andersen

Voters have plenty of campaign mailers to peruse this election, especially in the highly competitive District 2 Contra Costa supervisor fight between Danville Mayor Candace Andersen and Contra Costa Community College board President Tomi Van de Brooke.

Yesterday, I posted mailers put out by independent expenditure committees who support Van de Brooke. Below, you’ll see a pro-Andersen mailer paid for by the Deputy Sheriffs Association PAC and one from her campaign.

Solar energy professor Sean White of Lafayette is also running, but he has no mailers. It takes money to send out mail and White has refused to take campaign contributions on the grounds that the process corrupts politicians.