Thumbs up to Fresno Area Express bus driver Socorro Pelayo for rescuing Ny’ja Davis, 16, a Bullard High School student, from an attempted rapist. Before 8 a.m. last week a man Ny’ja had never seen at her bus stop before grabbed her by the straps of her backpack.
“I started screaming for somebody to help me, but nobody came.” That’s when Pelayo’s bus pulled up.“I ran on the bus and (Pelayo) hurried up and closed the doors. He was yelling something, but I was too scared to understand.” The man hit Ny’ja on the butt and legs on her way onto the bus and started to bang on the sides of the bus.
Pelayo called the police and consoled Ny’ja, who was shaking and crying – and the other riders on the bus who were upset by the scene.
Pelaya credits her routine of morning prayers for enabling her to help Ny’ja. Just before her route starts at 5:45 a.m., she walks down the aisle of the bus and prays over each seat.
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“I touch every seat and say, ‘God cover all these people and help them. Bless them,’” said Pelayo, 65. “ I tell God, ‘You drive this bus. I’m not driving this bus.’”
We congratulate Pelayo on her heroism and her strong faith. Ny’ja’s mother calls her a guardian angel. Indeed. Thankfully, the police also were on top of their game. They quickly caught Julian Medina, 29, who was arrested and charged with felony sexual battery and annoyance/molestation of a child.
Quick, someone cue up Carrie Underwood’s “Jesus Take The Wheel.”
Thumbs down to the California Legislature for its inconsistent and perhaps illegal handling of sexual harassment cases. Dan Walters of CalMatters writes that two Assembly members have resigned, a state senator has been suspended with pay and an Assemblywoman voluntarily suspended herself without pay. There are formal procedures outlined in Proposition 50, but they are not being followed.
Two Los Angeles Democrats, Raul Bocanegra and Matt Dababneh, resigned. Cristina Garcia of Bell Gardens, one of the leaders of the #MeToo movement, is accused of harassment by two men and she voluntarily took leave without pay during the investigation. Tony Mendoza, a Democrat from Artesia, is being given three months suspension during the investigation – with pay – contrary to the provisions of Proposition 50. Allegations by women also have been made against Van Nuys Democrat Robert Hertzberg, but the Senate has taken no action against him.
This is not giving us confidence in their ability to wisely discipline these cases.
Thumbs up to the 200 mentor men and 450 boys who participated in Gaston Middle School’s Donuts With Dads. This is more than just a lot of sugar, it’s about creating mentors to guide the boys to success, a goal which became all too real after a gang war broke out last week, killing one person and injuring seven in a 48-hour period. The man who died was Anthony Perry, the son of a former security assistant at Gaston. The school hopes to make it an annual event.
Thumbs up to GUSS of Kingsburg and MegaBinder of Paso Robles for being among the World Ag Expo’s Top 10 New Product Winners at the annual event this week. GUSS (Global Unmanned Spray System) is the world’s first fully autonomous, driverless orchard sprayer and The ANDROS MegaBinder LRV is the fastest and most efficient ag film recycling system on the market.
The World Ag Expo, in its 51st year, is the largest ag expo of its kind with more than 1,500 exhibitors. Jerry Sinift is the CEO. This event is one of the things that makes the Valley impressive to a worldwide audience.
Thumbs up to Fresno Pacific University for opening Sunbird Pantry, an on-campus food bank. Working in partnership with Community Food Bank, the pantry collects and distributes boxed, canned and other food free. It is staffed by volunteers. Food insecurity has been identified as one barrier to student success in many universities so this is a great boost to hungry students who are famous for making the most of their very tight budgets. Fresno City College and Fresno State also are having success with their on-campus food pantries. Congratulations for their innovations and their compassion.
Thumbs up to the Fresno County Mock Trial Winners: Clovis North High School’s team advances to the California competition.