Ajo Copper News

The Ajo Copper News is a Weekly Newspaper
Serving Ajo, Why, & Lukeville in Southwestern Arizona since 1916.

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Deaths, Services
Weddings, Births, Happy News
December 26, 2007

•  Churches celebrated, throngs filled the Plaza on Christmas Eve to watch Santa light the square, and families and friends enjoyed time together.
•  Next up, New Year's Eve with dances, parties, and many other events.
•  Fr Floyd Stromburg, 75,  died December 22, 2007 in Tucson. Services are set for January 2 at 1:30 p.m. at St. Augustine Cathedral in Tucson.
•  Theodore R. "Ted" Doran, died July 29, 2007, in Cottonwood. He was a native of Ajo.
•  Thelma Schnell celebrated her 88th birthday on December 25.
•  Thelma Leatherwood celebrated her 83rd birthday on December 26.
•  Ava Eloise Hammett was born in Tucson on October 5, 2007, to Alison & Shawn Hammett of Tucson.
December 19, 2007
•  Christmas is coming, and with it a plethora of activities ranging from church services to club events to food and craft sales. There will be an open house at Curley School on Sunday and several of the resident artists will have open studios. The library is have a holiday craft session and a youth group is holding a piñata-making party. The annual Christmas bird count is in the planning stages. The VFW will hold a potluck dinner at 1 p.m. on Christmas Day, December 25; those attending are asked to bring a side dish and their own plates and silverware.
•  Officials of Organ Pipe Cactus Nation Monument and US Border Patrol disagree on the placement of a pedestrian fence being built along part of the park's southern boundary OPCNM superintendent Lee Baiza would like to see the fence shortened by 0.8 miles.
•  It's getting cold. Last week's high temperature was 62F and the low was 37F. There was 0.77 inches of rain, according to Phelps Dodge Mining.
•  Jose C. Gonzalez, 76, died at his home in Why on December 11, 2007. He was a longtime area resident. Mass was celebrated December 15 in Immaculate Conception Catholic Church; burial was in Ajo Cemetery. Douglass Funeral Home.
•  Harry White, 89, died December 3, 2007, in Dewey. He had moved to Ajo in 2002. Graveside services were held December 7 in Dewey.
•  Carmeline Eid, 83, died at her home in Ajo. She had lived here since 1992. Her ashes will be scattered in California.
•  James Ralph "Sonny" Crowell, 64, died December 8, 2007, in Phoenix. He was a longtime Ajo resident. A private family service is being planned.
•  Patti Summers is the new family nurse practitioner at Desert Senita Community Health Center.
•  The new Copper Phonebook is now available. It is free to those who stop in the Ajo Copper News to pick one up. Those who would like the book mailed to them are asked to send their name and address with $2 for postage and handling to Copper Phonebook, PO Box 39, Ajo, AZ 85321.
December 12, 2007
•  The Western Pima County Community Council met last Thursday. The council now has a website www.wpccc.info. Elections preceded the meeting; Carol Yokum, John Wyatt, and Ernie Green were elected unopposed. The council heard about utility upgrade projects, CDBG and Pro-Neighborhood grants, skateboard park progress, updates from the Pima County Sheriff's Department and US Border Patrol, and learned about the Smithsonian traveling exhibit at the Curley School.
•  A blood drive will be held at the Ajo Community Center on Friday afternoon, December 14.
•  Holiday festivities are crowding the calendar, joined by the companion events to the "Between Fences" and "Borders, Fences and Gates" show at the Curley School.
•  Rain! Last week's 1.22" of rain, as recorded by Phelps Dodge, has been joined by at about another half inch this week.
•  Irma Merrill Fullagar Smith, 92, a former longtime Ajo resident, died December 7, 2007, in Mesa. Funeral services are Friday, Dec, 14, at 10 a.m. at Kimball East Mesa Stake; visitation the hour before. Bunker's Garden Chapel.
•  Eldaretta "Rita" Courtney, 85, died December 6, 2007, in Glendale. Services were held in Ajo Calvary Baptist Church. Douglass Funeral Home.
•  Claudine "Deets" Corn died in Tempe. Graveside services are planned for Sunday, December 16, in the Ajo Cemetery.
•  Hannah Marie Gagnon was born November 8, 2007, in Page to Corina & Paul Gagnon.
•  Happy 100th birthday Edmundo Mota!
•  Happy birthday Brandon Krznarich and Alicia Montijo.
December 5, 2007
•  A fire Saturday night destroyed the home of Cathy & Ron Hunter. Two of the family's cats are thought to have perished but no other injuries were reported.
•  A large crowd was on hand for the opening of the traveling Smithsonian exhibit at Curley School on Sunday, December 2. The show will continue for six weeks.
•  A glitch in the renewal of the cunews.info domain resulted server problems took down this website and made e-mails to the staff bounce back to senders. The problems have been resolved.
•  The holiday season is underway with concerts, plays and pageants, auctions, sales, and more. This weekend will be an especially busy one.
•  The new Copper Phonebook will be available at the Ajo Copper News on Saturday.
•  Bill Driver, 61, died at his home in Ajo on December 1, 2007. A memorial motorcycle run to Why will leave from his home Saturday morning. Services will be held  at 1 p.m. on Saturday, December 8, at the VFW.
•  Phil Leppert, 75, died November 17, 2007, in Flagstaff. He was a native of Ajo. Services were held  November 24 in Pinetop.
•  Peggy Cole, a former teacher and local historian, celebrates her 88th birthday Saturday.
•  Gia Valentina Pilar Ramirez was born September 9, 2007. The premature infant weighed only 2 pounds and at one time was just 1.5 pounds. She now weighs 6 pounds and is home in Ajo. Her parents are Crystal Thomas and Miguel Ramirez.
•  Happy birthday to Lonnie Guthrie and Richard. Happy Anniversary Joe & Michelle.
November 28, 2007
•  Weekend visitors to Rocky Point sometimes have to wait  seven hours or more at the border while trying to cross. A effort is being made to have two more lanes on the US side of  the border; however, the single lane leading from Mexico would still be a bottleneck.
•  Between Fences, an traveling exhibit from the Smithsonian Institute, opens this Saturday, along with its local companion exhibit, Borders, Fences and Gates.
•  Small items, like batteries and toiletries, are being collected to send to troops in Afghanistan. Collections boxes will be set up at Ajo Ambulance and Ajo Assembly of God.
The holiday season is starting with plenty of events for residents.
•  Luciana Romo died Saturday, November 24, 2007, at a hospice in Peoria. Mass was celebrated in Immaculate Conception Catholic Church in Ajo on December 1.

November 21, 2007
Happy Thanksgiving!
•  An interruption in water service for Ajo Improvement customers lasted about an hour last Friday morning. Water was turned off to put on of the Hot Rod tanks back in service after it was cleaned.
•  Donors giving funds for extracurricular activities in the Ajo Unified School District may receive a tax credit on their state returns. For more information, call the superintendent's office at 520-387-5618 or view the state's pdf file. Donations must be made by December 31.
•  AmVets Post 99 has reorganized. Tom Dye is the new commander and Gerald Murray the quartermaster.
•  A Thanksgiving Day potluck dinner is being held at the VFW Post, starting at 1 p.m. Other events include an artists' studio tour, an evening in the Sonoran desert, library lecture, bingo games, pool tournament, and more.
•  Albert "Corn" Johnson, 54, died November 17, 2007, in Tucson. He was a native of Ajo. Rosary & visitation are on Wednesday, November 21, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. in Cobabi, followed by funeral services at 5 p.m.
•  Area residents are starting to decorate their fences in honor of the Smithsonian Institute's traveling exhibit "Between Fences" which opens at the Curley School on December 1.
November 14, 2007
•  The funeral of Chief Jim Bush was attended by several hundred people, filling every chair in the Curley School Auditorium. Escorted by an honor guard of firefighters, he was laid to rest following a poignant Last Call for Firefighter 31.
•  The Western Pima County Community Council, which held its first meeting in April 1989, will be holding elections for representatives from even numbered districts. Candidate forms are available at the library. WPCCC is a non-governmental community council which acts as a sounding board and community forum.
•  The Desert Senita Community Health Center has welcomed nurse practitioner Patti Summers to the staff and is holding  flu shot and well child/immunization clinics.
•  Author Ramah Shaw will be the speaker at the library this Thursday, November 15, at 7 p.m. Her talk is part of a series sponsored by the Friends of the Ajo Library. Other events this week are the Black & White Ball being held by the Ajo Community Players, The Ajo Lions Club annual turkey shoot, a pool tournament, an art exhibit and seminar about caring for the caregiver at the library, and several food sales.
•  The obituary of Jim Bush (see below and left) appeared on the front page of the November 14 issue.
•  Daveon Jesus Mesquita was born October 15, 2007, in Phoenix to Angelica Alvarez and David Mesquita.

November 7, 2007
•  The flood basin, roping arena, council election, ISDA projects such as the artisan apartments and Smithsonian exhibition, the skatepark, a hiring project by Premier Trade Finders, and local law enforcement were among topics at the Western Pima County Community Council meeting on November 1.
•  The Great Western Street Fair with the Paws, Claws & Snakes Pet Parade and the Desert Dust & Classic Rust car show is being held this Saturday between Curley School and the Plaza. The event is sponsored by the Ajo District Chamber of Commerce with some additional sponsorship from NAPA and Copper Sands motel. The street fair will feature booths with food and merchandise as well as entertainment by the Broken Toyz.
•  A public meeting will be held this Thursday at 7 p.m. at the community center in Walker Park about a grant Immaculate Conception Parish is applying for from The Heritage Fund to repair the historic church's roof.
•  Veterans' Day will be celebrated at the VFW with an open house on Sunday afternoon, November 11.
•  New chairs, bought with funds raised by Ajo Community Action Committee, have arrived and are ready for use in the Curley School auditorium. The group is now starting to raise money for lighting for the auditorium and stage.
•  Jim Bush died Saturday, November 3. Visitation will be held Friday, November 9, from 5 to 7 p.m. at Douglass Funeral Home. Funeral services will be held at Curley School at 10:30 a.m. on Saturday, November 10. Chief Bush was a longtime Ajo resident and headed the Ajo/Gibson Volunteer Fire Department for over two decades.
•  Stephen A Davis, 51, of Phoenix, died suddenly on October 22, 2007. A nurse, he grew up in Ajo. Services were held October 27 at Trinity Cathedral in Phoenix. Online tribute page.
•  Anna Ford, 63, died October 29, 2007, in Utah. Memorial services will be held November 10 at the LDS Chapel in Manila, Utah; rosary will be held November 9 at Vase Funeral Chapel in Rock Springs, Wyoming.
•  Evelyn Matson died October 16, 2007, in  Elk River, Minnesota. She was a winter resident of Ajo for many years. Memorial services have been held in Minnesota.
•  Happy birthday Josue Grijalva!
•  Bianca Vallejo, a Chandler girl with family roots in Ajo, played in the 2007 USSSA World Series in Florida as shortstop for the AZ Beez, a fast-pitch softball club.
October 31, 2007
•  Happy Halloween!  Many parties and events were held over the weekend and more are coming, including the annual children's parade of costumes in the Plaza. The Ajo Assembly of God is planning a Harvest Party for October 31. Father Nwachukwu will celebrate mass in the Ajo Cemetery on All Souls Day, November 2.
•  The Ajo museum is open for the season after 15 volunteers gave up part of their Saturday to clean. It's now open from noon to 4 p.m.
•  Illegal border crossers may soon get 15 to 180 days in jail before being sent back to Mexico. Presently, only repeat offenders are jailed before deportation. There are logistical challenges to overcome before the Tucson Sector of Border Patrol puts the initiative into practice.
•  Work on the waterlines is continuing and Meridian is now replacing the sidewalk removed along Solana. Streets are patched as work progresses and will later be resurfaced.
•  John V. Soto, 68, died October 20, 2007, at his home in Yuma. He was a native of Ajo. Services were held at Immaculate Conception Catholic Church in Ajo on October 27.
•  Virginia J. Price, 82, died September 24, 2007, in Tempe. She lived in Ajo many years, leaving after her husband's death. services were held in Scottsdale.
•  Happy birthday Eddie!
•  El Ballet Folklorico de Ajo will perform at the State Fair at 1 p.m. on Saturday, November 3.
•  Samantha Gonzales and Corp. Justin Hartline were married in Tucson on October 20.
•  Chris Dimitrakopoulos, RN, is the author of a chapter in a textbook on emergency nursing.
•  Robert Runge was the Ajo Rotary Club's student guest for October.
October 24, 2007
•  It's Red Ribbon Week and the Ajo schools are part of the single largest drug awareness campaign in the country with activities nearly every day of the week.
•  The Ajo Historical Society is holding a clean-up at the museum on Saturday.
•  Strong winds were the cause of several power outages last Monday.
•  Firefighters went to school during  Fire Prevention Week to talk to the children about fires and let them try out some firefighting equipment.
•  Matias "Sergio" Mariscales, 45, died October 20, 2007, at his home in Ajo. He had lived in Ajo since 1992. He was buried in Mexico.
•  Joshua James Blackburn, 29, died October 16, 2007. He is the grandson of Ajo residents. Services and burial were in Mesa.
•  Hardy Jackson Jr. and his wife, Dorothy, were joined by friends and family last Saturday as they laid handmade wreaths on the gravesites of those who had been a positive influence on Jackson's life.
October 17, 2007
•  The AHS Class of 1977 raided Ajo for their 30-year reunion last weekend.
•  The vehicle barrier on the Cabeza Prieta National Wildlife Refuge should be installed by the end of the federal 2008 fiscal year.
•  The governing board of Ajo Unified School District met Thursday evening, October 11, at the school. They handled personnel matters, discussed curriculum, and voted on several business items.
•  Among the groups starting busy new seasons are the Desert Music Club and the Ajo Garden Club.
•  Both the community band and the community choir have started practicing for their annual Christmas concert.
•  Elsie Deckard died Sunday, September 23, 2007, in Indiana. She was a winter resident. Services have been held in Indiana.
•  Nathan Edward Hernandez-Santillan was born October 3, 2007, in Tucson to Jose and Nadine Hernandez-Santillan of Ajo.
•  Michael Mason brought home a second place trophy from the Autodromo quarter-mile drag race in Sonoyta, Mexico. It was his first race at a sanctioned drag strip.
October 10, 2007
•  Upcoming Western Pima County Community Council elections, the sheriff's department, US Border Patrol, and the skatepark that will be built near the swimming pool were topics at the WPCCC meeting last Thursday.
•  Desert Senita Community Health Center will hold events throughout next week in celebration of Binational Border Health Week. The health center has also received its supply of flu vaccine and will hold shot clinics on October 16 & 23.
•  Ajo Improvement is planing to replace sewer lines after it finishes installing new waterlines.
•  The weather is cooler. the low last week was 70F and only one day had temperatures hitting 100F. In the coming week the highs are expected to be in the 80s and the lows in the 70s.
•  There were no obituaries in the October 10 issue of the Ajo Copper News.
•  The Rev. Debbie England
 will be speaking at the Indian Assembly of God Church next week, according tot he St. Titus Institute.
•  Glenn "Abbie" Davis has moved from Ajo to the Arizona Pioneers' Home in Prescott.
•  Aaron Sepulveda was the Ajo Rotary Club's student guest for September.
October 3, 2007
•  Ajo High School Homecoming •  The Red Raiders defeated the Lobos of Patagonia 34-22.  Roxanne Gradillas and Randy Owen were crowned king and queen; Yadi Netherlin and Aaron Sepulveda were runners-up; and Leticia Valenzuela, Virginia Ortiz, Edgar DeLeon, and Hector Campa completed the court. The juniors took first place in the float competition, followed by the freshmen, the seniors, and the sophomores.
•  Lt. B.J. Clements explained driving rules for deputies in an interview with the Ajo Copper News following letters to the editor and complaints at the most recent WPCCC meeting.
•  The board of the Desert Senita Community Health
Center has hired a nurse practitioner, Patricia Summers, who will start work in November. They also accepted, with regret, the resignation of board member Fred Fout.

•  Fall activities are starting up with food sales, auctions, classes, meetings, Christmas choir practice, youth sports, and much more.
•  National Wildlife Refuge Week is being celebrated at the Cabeza Prieta National Wildlife Refuge by relocating  Quitobaquito pupfish to a new permanent pond and a reception with refreshments.
•  There were no obituaries in the October 3 issue of the Ajo Copper News.
•  Happy Birthday Fernando Campa, Marcos Acosta, and Karen
•  El Cobre Ballet Folklorico is planning a reunion in January. For more information, contact Lina Olais.
September 26, 2007
•  AHS Homecoming - Friday, September 28 - Parade 4 p.m. Football game against Patagonia Lobos 7 p.m. with crowning of king & queen and announcement of float winners at halftime.
The fourth International Day of Peace celebrated in Ajo filled the Plaza with lots of people, origami cranes, puppets, doves, and  goodwill. The event was organized under the leadership of the International Sonoran Desert Alliance.
•  Public Lands Day on Saturday will be celebrated with clean-ups and a sunset dinner and talk at Pinkley Peak. The sunset event's sponsors are ISDA, Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument, Cabeza Prieta National Wildlife Refuge, and BLM.
•  The Ajo Garden Club is heading into fall with a potluck dinner at the picnic grounds on Sunday followed by a meeting and plant exchange, Monday at the library.
•  Unexpected problems have halted the filming of "Otis is Resurrected" by Fools & Horses Production. The independent company hopes to return to Ajo in January.
•  Rosemary Altimus, 74, died September 20, 2007, at her home in Tempe. She was an Ajo native who moved to the Phoenix area in 1960. She was buried September 24 in St. Francis Cemetery in Phoenix.
•  Frances L. Vega, 88, died September 14, 2007, in  in Youngtown. She was a longtime Ajo resident. Mass was celebrated in Immaculate Conception Catholic Church on September 22; burial was in the Ajo Cemetery. Douglass Funeral Home.
•  Sam L. Zozaya, 70, died September 7, 2007, in Chandler. He was an Ajo native who moved away in 1983. A memorial mass was held at St. Andrew the Apostle Catholic Church in Chandler on Monday, September 17.
•  Happy birthday Elizabeth "Ziza" Hernandez.
•  Happy anniversary Mike & Terry Mason.
•  Gabriela Greenwood is the new first grade teacher at Ajo Elementary School.
September 19, 2007
•  The Ajo school board met September 11, accepting resignations, hiring personnel, and accepting donations.
•  Many long-haul Mexican trucks are no longer required to transfer their loads within 20 miles of the border. The cross-border trucking is part of a 1-year pilot project under the North American Free Trade Agreement.
The International Day of Peace will be celebrated for the 4th year in Ajo under the leadership of the International Sonoran Desert Alliance on Friday. Groups from Mexico and the Tohono O'odham Nation will participate, making it a truly international celebration.
•  Stormy weather last weekend brought the traditional power outages, brief this time, over the weekend.
•  The Ajo Copper News started another volume -- the September 19 issue is Volume 84, Issue 1. The newspaper is actually older than 84 since it was founded in 1916, but no one knows when the volume numbers went astray.
•  Frances L. Vega, 88, died September 14, 2007, in Youngtown. Visitation is Friday, September 21, at Douglass Funeral  Home followed by rosary at Immaculate Conception Catholic Church at 6. Mass will be celebrated at 9 a.m. on Saturday, followed by burial in the Ajo Cemetery.
•  Hailey Rashea Wohlgamuth-Arviso was born in Mesa on August 17, 2007, to Stefanie Wohlgamuth and Victor Arviso of Ajo.
•  The AHS Class of 1977 is planning a reunion in Ajo October 12-14 for classmates and friends. For information, click here.
•  Happy 18th Birthdays to Ashlee Durham and Danielle Durham!
•  Happy birthdays Sue Wright, Samantha Webber, and Cienna Nicole Goodwin.
September 12, 2007
•  The Western Pima County Community Council resumed meeting after a two-month summer break. They heard about the health center, a recycling program, the Curley School Project, and the upcoming Smithsonian show in Ajo. During a call to the audience, a discussion of local law enforcement brought strong opinions to the fore. The meeting was led by Carol Yokum in the absence of chair Lil Jones. Other council members are Chris Dimitrakopoulos, Faye Miller, John Wyatt, Rick Lehner, Debbie Morrow, Mary Kralovec, and Ken Freese.
•  All but three of the artisan apartments at Curley School have been rented, according to project director Jim Wilcox.
•  From food sales to bowling leagues, from a one-day origami crane class to ongoing computer classes, fall is promising to be a busy one for local clubs and organizations.
•  Increased postage costs are forcing the Ajo Copper News to increase its subscription prices. As of October 1, the cost of a one year subscription in the USA and Canada will be $35.
•  Margaret Ileen "Sunny" Butterfield, 58, died September 6, 2007, in Goodyear. She was a longtime Ajo resident. Graveside services were held in the Ajo Cemetery on September 11. Douglass Funeral Home.
•  Enriqueta V. Lopez, 79, died August 28, 2007, in Tucson. She was a native of Ajo who lived here most of her life. Mass was celebrated September 1; burial was in the Ajo Cemetery. Douglass Funeral Home.
•  Glenda Florine Denny Wehrman, 66, died August 14, 2007, in Apache Junction. She was a native of Ajo. Services were held at the LDS Church in Apache Junction.
•  Billy B. Kelley, 86, died Sunday, August 12, 2007, in Medford, Oregon. He was a former Ajo resident. Services were held in Oregon.
•  Happy Birthday Darrell Walls, Gloria Mariscal, and Maribel Betancourt!
September 5, 2007
•  Breaking a three-year losing streak, the Red Raiders defeated Tanque Verde in Tucson, 30-16. Unfortunately, not enough players are eligible to field a team for this Friday's game so they are following their win with a forfeit. The Lady Raiders lost their first match of the season but followed it quickly with a win.
•  A micro burst toppled power poles leaving part of Ajo powerless, and roasting, for about fifteen hours last Saturday.
•  The Western Pima County Community Council will resume meeting this Thursday, September 6, at 7 p.m. in the community center in Walker Park.
•  Alexander Lee Bradley, 19, died in Wichita, Kansas, on August 24, 2007. He had planned to move to Ajo. Services have been held in Kansas.

•  Maya Gene Peterson was born June 11, 2007, in North Carolina to Hans and Laurie Peterson.
•  Happy Birthdays to Gery Krehbiel and Cory Castillo.

August 29, 2007
•  The Red Raider football season is in danger of being canceled after Friday's game against Tanque Verde in Tucson. Low turnout for the team has raised concerns over the players' potential for injury, complicated by eligibility issues. The school sent a letter home with high school students asking for support of the program.
•  A chase through Ajo ended last Sunday after a drug smuggler driving a stolen vehicle ran from Border Patrol, hit an agent's car, and then stopped the vehicle and ran into a house -- which happened to be the home of a BP agent preparing to go on duty. The suspect was apprehended and he as well as two BP agents, were taken to Phoenix medical facilities; no injuries were serious. Pima County Sheriff's Department and Ajo Ambulance were also at the scene.
•  All but two of the artisan apartments at Curley School have been leased.
•  Maria Agueda Nogales, 61, died at her home in Phoenix on August 17, 2007. She lived in Ajo for many years, leaving in 1992.  Mass was celebrated in Immaculate Conception Catholic Church on August 24. Douglass Funeral Home.
•  Happy Birthday to Michelle A. Pacheco, Lesi Jones, Dick Ducic, Kord Klinefelter, and Ralph Castillo.
•  Gabriel Gonzalez was promoted to sergeant. He serves with the 82nd Airborne and is stationed in Afghanistan.
•  Broken Toyz, an Ajo band, was co-headliner at the Ocean to Ocean music festival in Yuma earlier this month.
August 22, 2007
•  Area residents are being reminded that Desert Senita Community Health Center offers a variety of services, but emergency room treatment is not among them. The center is not a hospital and is not licensed to operate an emergency room. They do have a treatment room they can use for some urgent care, such as simple suturing, at their Same Day Clinic.
•  The pool will be open weekends only until Labor Day when it will close for the season.
•  Fran Driver is the new public health nurse at the Pima County Health Department office in Ajo.
•  The Piecemakers are one of Ajo's active groups. The stitchers have been busy lately making quilts to seen to soldiers in Iraq as part of their Hugs for Heroes program.
•  Larry Nord, 78, died August 17, 2007, in a Tucson hospice. He had lived in Ajo since 1987. Graveside services will be held in Ajo Cemetery at 2 p.m. on September 1. Douglass Funeral Home.
•  Agudea Nogales died August 17, 2007, in Phoenix. Rosary will be recited Friday, August 24. Mass will be celebrated in Immaculate Conception Catholic Church at 9 a.m. on Saturday, August 25. Douglass Funeral Home.
•  Jose & Otilia Mendez are celebrating their 60th wedding anniversary.
•  Selena Brianna Hinojos Mota was born in Mesa on May 4, 2007, to Nicole Hinojos and Cesar Mota.
•  Matthew Carson Lewandowski was born in California on June 19, 2007, to Brian & Carla (Favot) Lewandowski.
•  Happy birthday to Paulette Walters, Jose Reymundo, Joe Pacheco, and Marceline Marietti !
August 15, 2007
•  Mota's Shuttle Place vans have disappeared from the streets of Ajo. The owners -- Gustavo Mota Sr., Gustavo Mota Jr., and Christian Enrique Mota — were arrested for money laundering. More than forty other people, many connected to drug and people smuggling rings the Motas allegedly smuggled money for, were also arrested.
•  School started and students' lives are once again ruled by bells and homework assignments.
•  More rain has fallen and more may be on the way. The high was week was 105F and the low was 74F.
•  There were no obituaries in the August 15 issue of the Ajo Copper News.
•  Shannon R. Dooley and Abraham C. Arnett were untied in marriage on June 10 in Flagstaff.
August 8, 2007
•  School starts Monday, August 13, at 8:40 a.m.  An open house will be held Thursday, August 9, at 7 p.m.
•  Ajo Transportation is teaming up with Valley Metro to offer free trips to Phoenix on August Saturdays to introduce their new Saturday service.
•  The Ajo District Chamber of Commerce heard about plans for activities for the coming year at their July meeting. Coming up are a street fair in November, a Santa boutique in December, a piñata decorating contest in January, and the Sonoran Shindig in March.
•  National Health Center Week is being celebrated at Desert Senita Community Health Center with a variety of activities for week.
•  Father Richard Rego died in Tucson on July 30. A had served as a parish priest in Ajo for a decade. A Solemn High Requiem Mass was celebrated on Saturday afternoon, August 4, in St. Augustine Cathedral in Tucson. Brings.
•  Reba Inez Leatherwood, 80, died in a Phoenix Hospice on August 1, 2007. She came to Ajo as a teenager and lived her the rest of her life. Services were held August 6 at the Ajo Assembly of God. Burial was next to her husband in Ajo Cemetery. Douglass Funeral Home.
•  Heather Hunter and Frederick Fout were united in marriage in a Plaza ceremony on July 28.
•  Cailen Allen Roberts was born June 24, 2007, in San Diego, California, to Kelly Rice & Peter Roberts.
•  Amy Anne Whitley graduated from high school in Scottsdale on June 6.
•  Michael James Castillo was awarded a bachelor of science degree in electric engineering from Arizona State University.

August 1, 2007
•  About three inches of rain fell in the Ajo area last Wednesday, July 25. Though most damage was minimal, there was a power outage and water service disruption for part of Ajo.
•  The Curley School Artisan Apartments will be the subject of a TV segment on Channel 6 at 6:30 p.m. on July 31 and again at 8:30 a.m. on August 5. More information is available on the KUAT website www.kuat.org.
•  The Ajo skatepark project is proceeding on schedule. Members of the Ajo Skatepark Association are oiling their boards in anticipation of a December opening.
•  School starts in Ajo on Monday, August 13.
•  The efforts of several Ajo residents are being rewarded as new recycling facilities become available.
•  William Henry Weis, 74, died July 26, 2007, in Casa Grande. He had been an Ajo resident since 1998 and also had a summer home in Idaho. Services will be held later.
•  Paul Bennett Brown, 59, died July 22, 2007, in Mesa. He was a former Ajo teacher. Services were held in Ohio on July 28.
•  Barbara Michaeli, 67, died in Tucson on May 6, 2007. She grew up in Ajo and lived her again in the late 1990s.
•  Bryce Nicholas Korolsky was born July 17, 2007, in Chandler to Nick & Nickie Korolsky.
July 25, 2007
•  It's no longer a dry heat — the monsoon season rains have arrived.
•  The results of the latest AIMS (Arizona Instrument to Measure Standards) tests have been released. The eighth grades were the bright spot, meeting or exceeding the passing average for the state; other classes did not do as well, though some came close. For more information about AIMS and Ajo's results, visit the Arizona Department of Education website or Great Schools.
•  The first adventure camp held as a cooperative venture by ISDA, Cabeza Prieta National Wildlife Refuge, and Pima County Natural Resources, Parks & Recreation was popular with the kids attending.
•  An ecumenical Fifth Sunday Signspiration service will be held at Good Shepherd Presbyterian Church on Sunday, July 29, at 6 p.m.
•  Tomasa "Tommie" Castillo died July 19, 2007, in the Phoenix area. Visitation will be held at Douglass Funeral Home from 1 to 5 p.m. on July 27, followed by rosary at Immaculate Conception Catholic Church at 6 p.m. Mass will be recited there at 9:30 a.m. on Saturday, July 28. Burial will be in Ajo Cemetery. Douglass Funeral Home.
•  Sarah Lynn Hunt and James David Antone were united in marriage in a sunset ceremony on Sunday, July 15, 2007. They are making their home in Ajo.
July 18, 2007
•  The school board extended the superintendent's contract two years, approved the budget for the coming year, and made decisions about personnel and other matters when they met on July 12.
•  Cabeza Prieta National Wildlife Refuge, the International Sonoran Desert Alliance, and Pima County Natural Resources, Parks & Recreation are banding together to develop excursions into the desert to teach kids about camping, hiking, exploring, and the Sonoran Desert.
•  The police chief of Sonoyta pled guilty in federal district court to bribing a Border Patrol agent in 2005.
•  The known death toll of illegal migrants trying to cross the southern Arizona desert has hit 129, according to the Tucson Sector of US Border Patrol. The count began last October 1 with the start of the agency's fiscal year.
•  The public library will have one program for kids of all ages and two aimed at grown-ups this week. The American Citizens Social Club, Elks Lodge, and American Legion are having food sales. ISDA continues to offer a variety of programs.
•  Hot dry weather, largely unrelieved by rain in southern Arizona, is increasing fire danger. Several wildfires have already swept through the desert.
•  Billie Lee Holliday, 72, died July 7, 2007, in Mesa. He was a former Ajo resident. Services were held at the First Assembly of God Church in Mesa. Falconer Funeral Home.
•  Helen G. Daniel, 77, died July 13, 2007, at her home in Chandler. She was a longtime Ajo resident. Mass will be celebrated on Friday, July 20, at 10 a.m. in St. Benedict Catholic Church in Phoenix.
•  Lola Marie Kinkead Boyd, 89, died June 7, 2007, in a nursing home in California. She was a former Ajo resident. She was buried in San Diego, California.
•  Bess Walliman Switzer Jones, 103, died July 6, 2007, at a nursing home in Mesa. She was a former Ajo teacher. Memorial services will be held at Green Acres Mortuary Scottsdale at 9:30 a.m. on July 29. National Cremation Society.
•  Brandon Derek Larremore was born in St. Joseph's Hospital in Phoenix on June 26, 2007, to Roxann Cardenas and Derek P. Larremore of Phoenix.
•  Happy birthday Dominique Pacheco!
•  Congratulations Robert and Patricia Kornack.
•  Ajo photographer Tom Kiefer's exhibition, Journey West: Tucson to Ajo, is being shown at the Phoenix airport in the pre-security area of terminal 2.
•  Casey Cano, 11, son of former Ajo resident Peter Cano and his wife Rebecca, will attend a youth leadership conference in Washington DC this fall.
July 11, 2007
•  The school board will consider the coming year's budget and renewing the superintendent's contract, along with other items, when they meet July 12.
•  Will hordes of Mexican trucks be rattling through Ajo? Is a bypass being built around Ajo? Both are unlikely. There is no funding for expansion of the Lukeville Port of Entry, which would be necessary for increased traffic, even though it's been approved. An Ajo bypass is not included in the state's 20-year plan.
•  Infrastructure improvements at the Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument have closed a campground during the summer.
•  It's hot! Really hot. Temperatures in Ajo on the 4th of July hit a searing 117F. The monsoon season has not yet arrived; though clouds have darkened the sky and lightning shows have started, no rain has appeared.
•  Despite the heat, there are still many activities for young people and adults, including a pool tournament at the American Citizens Social Club.
•  Willie Farmer, 89, died July 3, 2007, in a Phoenix hospice. He had lived in Ajo for 73 years. Services were held in the Ajo Federated Church on July 6; burial was in the Ajo Cemetery. Douglass Funeral Home.
•  Mack Guinn, 91, died July 2, 2007, from injuries received in a car accident in June. He had been an Ajo resident since 1923. Memorial services will be held at the LDS Church on July 14; burial will be in the Ajo Cemetery. Douglass Funeral Home.
•  Sam Larremore, 76, died July 4, 2007, in Tucson. He was an Ajo native. Services will be held at Shepherd of the Valley Presbyterian Church in Safford on July 12. McDougal's Caldwell Funeral Chapel.
•  Happy birthday Nellie David, Joey Call, and Abraham Erasmo Alvarez Jr.
July 4, 2007
Happy 4th of July
•  The 4th of July is being celebrated with a parade, festival in the Plaza, community concert, fireworks, team roping, food sales, and other events.
•  Phelps Dodge is recruiting workers, experienced and inexperienced, to work at its mine in Morenci and its new mine at Safford. It's offering housing and meals plus a 7-day-on, 7-day-off, schedule.
•  Fools and Horses is planning to shoot "Otis Is Resurrected", a move set in Ajo, in Yuma, Ajo, and Nogales. No schedule has been released.
•  The Ajo District Chamber of Commerce learned about the Lions Club, movie plans, a new phonebook, and activities being planned at its June membership meeting.
•  The Ajo school board tabled the school budget, voted on an insurance issue, made hiring decisions, and discussed information technology support.
•  The board of Desert Senita Community Health Center met briefly to hear reports and modify their mission statement.
•  Activities for young and old keep summer from being dull. Among those offering programs are ISDA, the public library, county parks & recreation, and churches.
•  Dolores Marie "Dee" Mays, 78, died June 29, 2007, in Nevada. She had lived in Ajo since 1994. Burial was in Nevada. A celebration of her life will be held at the Elks Lodge in Ajo on July 12 with a mass at Immaculate Conception Catholic Church on Friday, July 13.
•  Manuel Trujillo Rendon, 68, died June 9, 2007, at the VA hospital in Tucson. He was an Ajo native and was an actor & author under the name Manny Twofeathers.
•  Liane "Honey" de la Cruz, 42, died June 24, 2007, in Tucson. She was an Ajo native. Rosary, a wake, and mass were held in Ajo. Burial was at Childs Ranch. Adair Funeral Home of Tucson and Douglass Funeral Home of Ajo.
•  Gloria and Juan Garcia celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary on May 11.
•  Happy birthday Gayle Weyers and Gary Chatham.
•  Happy anniversary Cary Lee & Dustin.
June 27, 2007
•  The stack is down. To watch, click here to go to a page with an animated version and links to a QuickTime movie. The video has also be found on YouTube.com.
•  The Desert Sharks swim meet was canceled by Pima County Natural Resources, Parks & Recreation and has since been reinstated. The meet will be held Saturday at the public pool in Ajo.
•  Two huge steam generators are slowly making their way from Puerto Peñasco in Mexico up to the Palo Verde Nuclear Generating Station near Buckeye. The convoy will travel at night, closing down sections of the highways and Well Road.
•  Plans are progressing for the parade, festival in the Plaza, and fireworks on the 4th of July.
•  Maria Jesus F. Valenzuela, 82, died June 21, 2007, at a nursing home in Tucson. She was a native of Ajo who lived here most of her life. Rosary will be Friday evening, June 29. Mass will be celebrated in Immaculate Conception Catholic Church; burial in Ajo Cemetery. Douglass Funeral Home. •  Jeannie and Angel Reyna were married June 5 at the First Assembly of God Church.
•  Happy birthday Soila Kilpatrick. Happy birthday Hank. Happy birthday JD Allen.
June 20, 2007
•  Rabies is not widespread, yet. All nine animals sampled were negative, according to Dan Urquidez of Arizona Game & Fish Department.
•  The endangered Sonoran pronghorn may not be springing into recovery but the species is making progress with 18 fawns born this year.
•  The fireworks have arrived for the 4th of July. The community choir and band are starting to practice for their annual Independence Day concert.
•  Lots of kittens and puppies, as well a adult cats and dogs, are available for adoption at the Pima Animal Care Center.
•  Consuelo Mendez, 81, died June 15, 2007, in a Glendale hospital. An Ajo native, she lived here all her life. Mass was celebrated Tuesday in Immaculate Conception Catholic Church; burial was in the Ajo Cemetery. Douglass Funeral Home.
•  Liam Colin McGrady was born February 20, 2007, in Texas, to Shawna McGrady De La Torre & Robert De La Torre.
•  Zachary Wayne Noblitt was born in Kansas on May 19, 2007, to Neil & Natalie Noblitt.
•  Alice & Chuck Zellers celebrated their 42nd wedding anniversary.
•  Frank Cesarec will celebrate his 89th birthday on June 22.
June 13, 2007
•  Authorities are trying to determine the extent of the rabies outbreak in the Ajo area. At least three people are now being treated after attacks by rabid animals.
•  The new date for the demolition of the smelter smokestack is Wednesday, June 20.
•  Zoning, rabies, ATVs, deputies, speed limits and crosswalks were all topics at the last Western Pima County Community Council meeting for the season.
•  Summer activities through Pima County Natural Resources, Parks & Recreation, the Salazar-Ajo Branch Library, and the International Sonoran Desert Museum are keeping people (mostly kids) busy as the weather heats up.
•  Veterans' groups and the Elks Lodge will celebrate Flag Day on June 14.
•  Ajo Improvement sewer rates are increasing to $12.76 per month. The hike is the first in three years.
•  The Ajo school board met June 7. They made personnel changes, heard a report on a sports survey, and approved workshops.
•  Shirley Keeton, 86, died April 8, 2007. She was a native of Ajo and a Phoenix resident. Private services were held. Hansen Mortuary.
•  Margaret Gonzalez, 80, died May 31, 2007, in Globe. She was a former resident of Ajo. Services were held June 4 in Miami.
•  Denise Campos-Montijo was graduated from The University of Arizona on May 12 with a degree in elementary education.
•  Roderika Hernandez was featured in the April 2007 issue of ArizonaWoman.
•  Happy birthday Carol Fejarang and Elva Lea Amado.
June 6, 2007
•  Rabies has been confirmed in a fox and a bobcat killed in Ajo during the past week. At least two people have started rabies shots after being attacked by the bobcat. Residents are urged to report any animal behaving oddly and to get pets vaccinated and keep them indoors.
•  Ned Norris Jr defeated Vivian Juan-Saunders in the election for chair of the Tohono O'odham Nation. Norris had been Juan-Saunder's vice chair until he resigned about ten months ago.
•  The board of the Desert Senita Community Health Center met May 27 and heard an update of their strategic plan.
•  There may be short outages as Ajo Improvement replacing primary distribution lines, transformers, poles, and other components in order to provide more reliable electric service.
•  Curley School Artisan Lofts held its grand opening with lots of speakers, entertainment, and food on Tuesday. Later in the week, Lee Baiza was installed as superintendent of Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument.
•  Terry Gross, 42, died at church youth camp in Prescott on May 30, 2007. He was an Ajo resident. Visitation was held at the Ajo Assembly of God Church; services were held June 4 at Dicus Auditorium. Douglass Funeral Home.
•  Carol LaMar West, 78, died at his home in Ajo on April 24, 2007. Graveside services were held May 14 at Forest Lawn in Glendale, California.
•  Esperanza Canez and Randy Nicholson were married in a ceremony held June 2 at the Mocambo Ballroom.
•  Heather Hunter and Fred Fout have announced their plans to marry in a July 28  ceremony in the Plaza.
•  Jim Thomas will celebrate his 92nd birthday on June 7. His wife Charlotte will celebrate her 83rd birthday on June 11.
•  Happy birthdays to Jason, Louie, Janet, and Dani.
May 30, 2007
•  The smelter smokestack has received a brief reprieve. Due to a scheduling conflict with the contractor, the demolition has been postponed until sometime in July.
•  New Organ Pipe superintendent Lee Baiza will be installed and welcomed to the area at a ceremony at Walker Park on Thursday afternoon.
•  The Curley artisan housing grand opening on Tuesday will offer speakers, tours, and lunch for those who attend.
•  4th of July plans are underway. Applications for those who want to be in the parade or have a booth are available at the Ajo Copper News.
•  The pool is open for the summer. The library is starting its summer programs and ISDA is also offering summer programs.
•  Memorial Day services were held in the cemetery on Monday by members of the Veterans of Foreign War, AmVets,  American Legion, and their auxiliaries.
•  An account has been started at the National Bank of Arizona in Ajo to help the Grant Peterson family who lost their home to fire.
•  Pete Molina, 62, died May 14, 2007, at his home in Salt Lake City, Utah. He was an Ajo native. Services were held in Utah on May 22.
•  Mack Guinn celebrated his 91st birthday May 30.
•  Happy birthday Lucky.
•  Brian King has graduated from ASU and his sister Lauren from a high school in Peoria. Amanda Weber is being graduated from high school in Maryland.
May 23, 2007
•  Valedictorian Lacy Elaine Tryon leads the Ajo High School Class of 2007 as she graduates with distinction this Thursday. Co-salutatorians Matthew Rossi and Sarah Spitzer are graduating with honors, as are Jessica Mann and Johanna Bauer. Other graduates are Lako Aguirre, Amy Alvillar, Jack Blow, Jesus Campa, Vanessa Castillo, Adrian Encinas, Stefanie Esquivel, Carla Gutierrez, Kenneth Haynes, James Laverdure, Jennifer Lewis, Esther Magdaleno, Benjamin Miller, Miguel Nogales, and America Perez.
•  Eighth grade graduation is Wednesday evening, May 23.
•  The grand opening of Curley School Artisan Housing next Tuesday will feature Pima County Supervisor Sharon Bronson as mistress of ceremonies and Congressman Raul Grijalva as the keynote speaker.
•  An Ajo man who lured two other local men to Sonoyta, Mexico, where they were assaulted and one was held hostage, was arrested on drug charges and is awaiting extradition to Mexico. The kidnap victim was freed during a raid by Mexican police. The incident was investigated by Border Patrol and the FBI; the names of those involved were not released to the media.
•  Fred Fout has been named as the new school principal. He will take over on July 1, replacing Don German who is leaving to take a job at another school district.
•  The swimming pool opens Saturday.
•  Eleanor Mendonsa, 97, died May 16, 2007 in Surprise. She was a resident of Ajo. Services will be held May 24 in Arcadia, California.
•  Mary Jo Jones was honored as Woman of the Year at a tea held by the Xi Gamma Pi Chapter of Beta Sigma Phi at the Guest House Inn on Saturday.
•  Bob Boozer celebrated his 75th birthday at an intimate family party on May 17.
•  Happy birthday Mona Yanez.
•  Barbara Kment, wno lives in Ajo and teaches in Gila Bend, was honored as one of two teachers of the year by Westside Impact Schools.
May 16, 2007
•  Another landmark will soon disappear from the Ajo skyline. The Phelps Dodge power plant smokestack will be demolished on Tuesday, June 5. [Note: The demolition was been postponed.] Controlled Demolition, Inc. plans to bring down the 210' stack with less than 50 pounds of explosives.
•  Donations are still needed to make the all-night Grad Night party a success. Donations may be sent to the Ajo Unified School District, POB 68, Ajo, AZ 85321 with a notation the money should be used for the safe and sober event.
•  The last weeks of school will be busy ones. Middle school school students attended a career fair last week and more events are planned. High school basketball players will take on alumni this Friday and the last band concert of the year is this Thursday. Several other school events and field trips are also planned. Graduation is Thursday, May 24, for AHS seniors. Eighth graders will be promoted the day before, on May 23.
•  Several familiar faces will be absent when school starts next fall. counselor Dan Morales, Terry Orr, Robert Runge, principal Don German, and secretary Marilyn Lindner have all resigned or retired.
•  The school board will start interviewing candidates for school principal next Wednesday.
•  Summer is here. Temperatures are regularly topping 100F. The swimming pool will open Saturday, May 26.
•  Margaret Carrera Blue died May 3, 2007. She was born in Ajo in 1943. Mass and burial were in Tucson on May 12. Heather Mortuary of Tucson.
•  Morlan "Sam" Wiman, 82, died May 11, 2007, in Peoria. He was a former Ajo resident. Services were held in Wickenburg on May 14. Wickenburg Funeral Home.
•  Carol Marie Smith died October 16, 2006, in Raleigh, North Carolina. She was the former wife of former Ajo resident William Koller. Services were held in Memphis, Tennessee.
•  Joe Eberling, 83, died in Sierra Vista on May 9, 2007. He was a former Ajo resident. Services were held in Douglas on May 14.
•  Mass was celebrated for Eileen Jones, an Ajo native and longtime resident, in Immaculate Conception Catholic Church on May 12. Douglass Funeral Home & J Warren.
•  Fire chief Jim Bush is celebrating his 81st birthday; he's one of the oldest active fire chiefs in the nation.
•  Happy birthday to Nico David, Aaron Mayson, Larry Ortega Jr.
•  Former Ajo resident Bryce Bigelow and Patty Harrison were married in Las Vegas on Sunday, May 8.
•  Adrian Ortega was born in Phoenix on April 30, 2007, to Kenlyann Ortiz and Larry Ortega Jr. of Ajo.
•  Benjamin Ortiz Diaz was born in Tucson on April 18, 2007, to Sylvia Ortiz and Ignacio Diaz of Ajo.
•  Connor Wallace Marion was born in Mesa on May 2, 2007, to John Eric and Isabel Alegria Marion of Tempe.
•  Eilonwy Grace Lockwood was born February 27, 2007, in Duluth, Minnesota, to Maria and Dave Lockwood of Wisconsin.
May 9, 2007
•  The Western Pima County Community Council met May 3. Business included updates on the roping arena, bus service, and local law enforcement and well as a proposal for a recycling center. Rich Lehner was voted in to replace Edith Vance. Sharon Cordy resigned, which now leaves two positions still to be filled.
•  The Cinco de Mayo fiesta brought hundreds of people to the Plaza for the annual celebration.
•  The fireworks fund, now in the hands of the Ajo Gibson Volunteer Fire Department, is in desperate need of donations. Contributions may be sent to AGVFD, PO Box 909, Ajo, AZ 85321.
•  The Curley School project is nearing completion. A grand opening is being planed for May 29.
•  Coming up this weekend are several Mother's Day observances and a concert by the New Swingtyme Jazz Band in the Plaza. The Aguilar family will perform at the library on Thursday.
•  Early registration for kindergarten will be held at the school on Wednesday, May 16.
•  The price of a stamp increases on Monday. All other postal rates are also increasing.
•  Eileen Jones, 42, died May 5, 2007, at a hospital in Mesa. Services are tentatively scheduled for Friday & Saturday in Ajo. Douglass Funeral Home.
•  Thelma Irene Jones, 103, died May 5, 2007, at her home in Tempe. She lived in Ajo for many years. Services will be held in the Ajo Federated Church at 11 a.m. on Thursday, May 10. Burial will be in the Ajo Cemetery. Bunker Family Funeral Home.
•  Anthony Rubio, Jr., 52, died April 26, 2007, in Tucson. He was a native of Ajo. Graveside services were held at Childs Ranch on May 5. Douglass Funeral Home.
•  Juan Frausto, 54, died April 26, 2007, in Tucson. He was a native of Ajo. Mass was celebrated in Ajo on May 7. Burial was in the Ajo Cemetery. Douglass Funeral Home.
•  Anna M. Reynolds, a former Ajo resident, will celebrate her 90th birthday at a party at her grandson's home in Chandler on May 12. She is the author of several books.
•  Happy birthday Lari Krznarich.

May 2, 2007
•  The Ajo Community Golf Course needs to update its World War II era facilities, says  course spokesman Carol Peek. Improvements totaling $1,407,500 are being sought for eight projects through the county bond election expected to be held in 2008.
•  The weekend's main event will the the annual Cinco de Mayo fiesta in the Plaza this Saturday, sponsored by the American Citizens Social Club. The library, International Sonoran Desert Alliance, and Pima County Natural Resources Parks & Recreation continue to offers classes, lectures, and other activities.
•  Jim Wilcox, manager of the Curley School restoration project, has proposed a similar project to WAMA, the Warehouse Arts Management Organization, in Tucson.
•  The new border crime unit of the Pima County Sheriff's Department will soon concentrate on issues such as illegal alien smuggling, drug smuggling, and any illegal action involving immigrants as suspects. The unit's territory will include Ajo.
•  Francisco P. "Pancho" Vega, 80, died at his home in Ajo on April 24, 2007. He was an Ajo native and lifelong resident.  Visitation will be at Douglass Funeral Home Friday, May 4, 2-5 p.m., followed by rosary at Immaculate Conception Catholic Church at 6 p.m. Mass 10 a.m. Saturday. Burial in Ajo Cemetery. Douglass Funeral Home.
•  Pamela Gail Sosa, 44, died at her home in Tucson on April 23, 2007. She was an Ajo native. Services were held April 27; burial was at Childs Ranch near Ajo.
•  Julian Johnni Delgado was born April 3, 2007, in Tucson to Bridgette & Arturo Delgado.
•  Happy birthdays Hilda Alvarez, Selena, Dr. Katherine Schumacher, and Francisca Dorame Castillo!
April 25, 2007
•  The Ajo Copper News is celebrating 91 years of local news with a sale and open house on Saturday. The first issue of the newspaper was published on April 29, 1916.
•  Ajo Community Golf Course's new roof was dedicated on
April 20, Carol Peek was recognized for her work on the project and founding member Glenn Davis was presented a plaque.
•  It's not just students who get report cards. Schools do, too. Their report cards can be downloaded in pdf format from the Arizona Department of Education.
•  Though the busy season is winding down, there are still several events: a benefit dinner and dance for Polito Montijo, a lecture at the library by Tom Powell about Google ranking, the opening of the new Ajo Christian Library, a book sale, a pool tournament,  youth sports and other activities at school and Pima County Natural Resources, Park and Recreation, and more.
•  Antonio "Tony" Leon Soto, 54, died April 17, 2007. Mass will be celebrated at 9:45 a.m. on Saturday, April 28, in Immaculate Conception Catholic Church in Ajo.
•  Roberto E. "Bobby" Leon Soto, 50, died April 9, 2007. Mass was held in Ajo on April 14 in Immaculate Conception Catholic Church.
   Tony and Bobby Soto were brothers.
•  Rosalia Viola Luters passed her test with a perfect score and became a US citizen on Friday, April 13.
•  Happy Birthday to JJ Acosta, Yolanda, Lito Castillo.
•  Former Ajo resident Marjorie K. Guinn Johnson has published a children's book, Willy King and the Millionaires.
April 18, 2007
•  Pima County Supervisor Sharon Bronson will headline the speaker list at the dedication of the new clubhouse roof at the Ajo Community Golf Course (formerly known as the Ajo Country Club) at 2 p.m. on Friday, April 20.
•  Despite the copper boom mentioned in the April 13 issue of the Arizona Republic, Phelps Dodge spokesman Ken Vaughn says there are no present plans to reopen the mine in Ajo.
•  Cesspools installed by unlicensed contractors without inspection are causing problems both for the homeowners and for the public when they go bad.
•  Principal Don German will be leaving the Ajo Unified School District at the end of June to assume the superintendent's position at Aguila Elementary.
•  The school board met April 12 and accepted a resignation, hired personnel, heard reports, accepted donations, and authorized a bid on auditorium curtains & seating, among many items on the agenda. Ineligibility may cause some sports programs to be canceled if athletes' grades don't improve.
•  The past week was windy with a few dusty raindrops falling. Temperatures ranged from the 80s down to the high 40s.
•  Jason Michael Powers, 30, died April 11, 2007, due to complications from leukemia., He has family in Ajo. Private family services are being held.
•  Carlos Leander Miranda,  50, died at his home in Ajo on April 8, 2007. He was a native of Ajo. Services were held April 14 a the Sells Assembly of God Church; burial was at Darby Wells.
•  Memorial services for Mary Ann Sipe will be held at 11 a.m. on Saturday, April 11, at Elks Lodge in Ajo.
•  Memorial services for Eloisa Lopez will be held Saturday, April 21, at 10 a.m. in Immaculate Conception Catholic Church in Ajo.
•  Elizandro Raul Arviso was born March 18, 2007, in Phoenix to Deanna Arviso.
•  Brianna Michelle Schumack was born March 15, 2007, in Oregon to Bianca Welton  and David Schumack.
•  The All Ajo Reunion will be held at Rawhide in the Phoenix area  April 27-28. Sponsors are the Friends of Ajo.
April 11, 2007
•  Federal and Arizona income tax returns are due two days later this year. The deadline is April 17.
•  The Western Pima County Community Council heard about flood control, the Pima County Sheriff's Department, crosswalks, and zoning issues at its meeting last week.
•  Construction of the flood control retention basin behind Curley School has been delayed a few months.
•  Though other landfills in the county have fees, Supervisor Sharon Bronson convinced the PIma County Board of Supervisors to allow the landfill in Ajo to remain free.
•  Students in second through twelfth grade will be taking standardized tests this week -- AIMS, AIMS DPA, or Terra Nova.
•  Doris "Pandy" Williams, 56, died April 3, 2007, in Cottonwood. She was a long time Ajo resident. Rosary will be recited at Immaculate Conception Catholic Church in Ajo on Friday at 6 p.m.; mass will be celebrated there at 10 a.m. on Saturday.
•  Eloisa Lopez, 80, died April 5, 2007,  in Phoenix. Services are pending but will probably be held on April 21.
•  Susan Turk died April 6, 2006, in Washington. She had lived in Ajo the past ten years. Services are being held in Gig Harbor, Washington.
•  Paul & Kay Smith were remarried in Wichita, Kansas, on March 29.
•  Dave Godfrey was promoted to sergeant in a ceremony at the Pima County Sheriff's Department in Ajo.
•  Happy Birthday Amanda & Lauren Weber.
•  Happy Anniversary Pili & Sergio Mariscales.

April 4, 2007
•  The traditional Easter Sunrise Service will be held at 6:30 a.m. in the Plaza. Churches will celebrate with ecumenical and individual services during the week and on Sunday.
•  A gymkhana is being held on Saturday at Doyle's Arena. The Easter Bunny plans to visit the kids' egg hunt in Walker Park Saturday afternoon.
•  Information about the new waterline project will be presented at a public meeting being held by Ajo Improvement Company this Wednesday evening.
•  CERT, an emergency response group that is part of Citizens Corps, needs new members.
•  Kathy Billings has ended her tour as superintendent of Organ Pipe Cactus Monument. She is moving to the same post at Pecos National Historical Park in New Mexico. Billings will be succeeded by Lee Baiza who will assume the superintendent's duties in May.
•  Mary Ann Sipe, 66, died April 1, 2007, in a Casa Grande hospital. She was an Ajo resident. Services will be held at a later date. Douglass Funeral Home.
•  William Echols, 60, died March 25, 2007, at his home in Yuma. He was an Ajo native. Yuma Mortuary.

•  Happy birthday Larry Ortega III, Ronnie Manuel, Ofelia Campa, Mariah Diaz, and Jose E. Ortiz!
•  Happy retirement, Frank Campos!

March 28, 2007
•  Ajo Improvement Company will start phase one of replacing old water lines by the end of April. The first phase will cost about $2.2 million and will take in much of the old townsite. Future phases of the project will encompass the rest of AICo's service area. A community meeting is being held to distribute information about the project on April 4.
•  The vaudeville show and ice cream social were popular events last weekend but the turnout for the movie festival was disappointing. The cash roping and chuckwagon dinner enjoyed some success.
•  Desert Senita Community Health Center has received a $200,000 grant to convert the former assisted living center into a dental facility.
• Individual churches and the Ajo Pastors Association are celebrating the final week of Lent with services.
•  Spring has brought not just flowers but plenty of bees as well. Most of the honey bees in the area are now considered Africanized.
•  Marge Hagen, infamous for her connection to crimes in Minnesota and Ajo, was arrested at an assisted living center in Tucson on charges of forgery, theft, fraudulent schemes, and tampering with a computer. Hagen, 74, was released from prison in 2004 after serving sentences on arson related charges.
•  Coming up this week-end is the Lions Club annual javelina shoot.
•  Audrey Berry, 78, died at her home in Ajo on March 23, 2007. She had been an Ajo resident since 1991. Services will be held at 1 p.m. on Saturday, March 31, in the Ajo Federated Church. Douglass Funeral Home.
•  Joseph Scoleri, 84, died March 18, 2007, in Apache Junction. He was an Ajo resident. Memorial services will be held at the VFW at 11 a.m. on Friday, March 30.
•  Charles R. Agee, 87, died March 20 in Arkansas. He was a former Ajo resident. His ashes will be scattered.
•  Marilyn V. Kerr, 79, died March 12, 2007, in California. She had lived in Ajo for 13 years. Services were held in Los Gatos, California, on March 16.
•  Happy birthday Chloe Arianna Cowhig Krehbiel! Happy birthday Jack Blow!
•  Happy Anniversary Stella & Grant Peterson!
•  Welcome home Ariel & Megan Hernandez and family.
•  Matthew Scarletto, a former Ajo resident, won the grand prize in the recent Phelps Dodge essay contest. He attends 4th grade in Morenci.
March 21, 2007
•  It will be another busy weekend in Ajo. There is a movie festival at Dicus Auditorium with "Babel" leading the bill. The Ajo Community Players' annual vaudeville show will be staged Friday and Saturday. There will be a cash roping and a chuckwagon dinner at Doyle's Arena on Saturday afternoon, sponsored by the Ajo Rotary Club and several individuals. An ice cream social with live entertainment is being held on Sunday afternoon in the Plaza by Friends of the Ajo Library. There is also a pool tournament, a desert field trip, lectures, and meetings.
•  Permanent staff reductions are being planned for national wildlife refuges in the southwest due to a shrinking budget, according the the US Fish & Wildlife Service. The Cabeza Prieta National Wildlife Refuge will not be hit as hard as some but will still feel the crunch.
•  The Sonoran Shindig was more popular than ever with the new location with Walker Park receiving plaudits.
•  The All Ajo Reunion will be held in the Phoenix area in late April. Information can be found at www.cunews.info/reunion.
•  Gordon R. "Pinky" Leap, 84, died March 15, 2007, at the VA in Tucson. He lived in Ajo most of his life. Services were held at the Ajo Assembly of God Church on March 19; burial was in Ajo Cemetery. Ganley Funeral Home.
•  Ernesto B. Serventi, 79, died March 8, 2007, in Chandler. He was an Ajo native. Mass was celebrated in Immaculate Conception Catholic Church on March 17; burial was in Ajo Cemetery. Douglass Funeral Home.
•  Gerardo Stacy Sanchez-Romero, 1, died March 13, 2007, in Phoenix. He lived in Ajo during his short life. Services were held in Good Shepherd Presbyterian Church on March 17; burial was in Ajo Cemetery. Douglass Funeral Home.
•  Rafael Leonardo Casillas was born in Tucson on February 11, 2007, to Pennie Bell & Rafael Casillas.
• Happy birthday Lucille Couch!
March 14, 2007
•  The 2007 Sonoran Shindig is shaping up to be a howling good time at Bud Walker Park on Saturday, March 17. There will be lots of exhibits, booths, entertainment, contests, and food. St. Patrick's Day is being celebrated at other events, too, with food & dance.
•  Local streetlight issues are making news and many residents aren't sure why. Homeowners asked questions about the topic at recent meetings of the Western Pima County Community Council and a vehement letter to the editor appeared in the February 28 edition of the Ajo Copper News. An article in the March 14 issue tried to answer some of the questions.
•  Adelle Decheine’s petition effort to resurrect the Phelps Dodge whistle is working. Phelps Dodge spokesperson Ken Vaughn said he was impressed with the number of signatures collected so far and the company is going to get figures together to check on the feasibility of bringing the whistle back.
•  Pima County Natural Resources, Parks & Recreation is starting spring sports with T-ball and coach pitch for youngsters.
•  The results of a water corrosivity test show that Ajo’s source water is not causing corrosion in household plumbing, according to Phelps Dodge.
•  The Ajo school board met Thursday, March 8.  They accepted a resignation and hired a replacement, heard reports on a coaches’ clinic, detention, and physical education, accepted donations, and transacted other business.
  Alice V. Ramirez, 82, died March 5, 2007, in Goodyear. She had lived in Ajo since she was 16. Mass was March 13 in Immaculate Conception Catholic Church. Douglass Funeral Home.
•  Barbara A. Thompson, 77, died at her home in Ajo on February 17, 2007. She was a winter resident of Ajo. Memorial services will held at a later date.
•  Norbert Ortega, 56, died March 4, 2007, in Goodyear. Mass will be celebrated in Immaculate Conception Catholic Church at 9 a.m. on Wednesday, March 14. Burial will be in the Ajo Cemetery. Douglass Funeral Home.
•  Paul Marquez, 45, died March 8, 2007, in Santa Rosa. Graveside services will held at Ajo Cemetery at 11 a.m. on Thursday, March 15. Douglass Funeral Home.
•  Ernesto Serventi, 79, died March 8, 2007, in Chandler. Mass will be celebrated in Immaculate Conception Catholic Church at 10 a.m. on Saturday, March 17.
•  Esperanza Canez and Randy Nicholson have announced their engagement. The couple is planning a June 2 wedding in Ajo.
•  Ajo Border Patrol Explorer Post 85 visited the Ajo State Capitol on Wednesday, March 7. They met with the acting governor & state legislators and were introduced on the floor of the Arizona House of Representatives. They also met with the police there.

March 7, 2007
•  A bobcat was caught by a county animal control officer and released in the Black Mountain area. Several bobcat sightings have been reported in recent weeks and at least one dog was mauled.
•  The Pima County assessor mailed property value statements last week. Though Ajo reportedly had the lowest average increase in value, increases ranged from negligible to a whopping 50%.
•  Nola Massey is back at work at Ajo Thrift. She was hit with a skillet and knocked unconscious late last month at her store and the cash from her register stolen.
•  At the Western Pima County Community Council meeting last week heard about a proposed hazardous waste facility in Mexico, local law enforcement, and transit.
•  The 4th of July needs help both in the form of money and of people who want to help plan the annual holiday event.
•  The Ajo Skatepark Association has made great progress but they need community support in raising $5000 in matching funds.
•  The board of the Desert Senita Community Health Center elected officers: Mari Zimmermann president, Andy Leap vice president, and Dick Ducic secretary/treasurer.
•  Events for the coming week include the American Citizens Social Club's chili cook-off, a dinner & show at the VFW, lectures, classes, and a dance.
•  Elizabeth Jane "Betty" Alvillar, 84, died March 3, 2007, in Tucson. She was a longtime Ajo resident.  Mass was held in Immaculate Conception Catholic Church on Saturday, March 10.
•  Troy Lee Leatherwood, 64, died March 5, 2007, at his daughter's home in Tucson.
He was an Ajo native. Memorial services were held Saturday, March 10, at Douglass Funeral Home.
•  Audrey Canon Hibbard completed Air Force basic training.
•  Happy Birthday Joe E. Martinez.

February 28, 2007
•  The Tucson Symphony Orchestra concert, the Desert Artists Guild art show, and the Lions annual rummage sale join a dance, food sales, bingo, meetings, and lectures as events in the week to come.
•  O'odham ways are being celebrated every Saturday and Sunday in March, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., at Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument.
•  The school is celebrating Read Across America this week with daily events and a RIF night.
• The school board voted to hire an onsite computer technician amid some controversy.
•  The Western Pima County Community Council will hear about a proposed hazardous waste facility in Mexico, about county issues, and from the Pima County Sheriff's Dept. at it's meeting Thursday evening.
•  The Ajo Chapter of the Arizona Archaeological Society is enjoying success at a dig near Ajo.
•  Rafael Ignacio Aroz, 44, died in Puerto Peñasco, Mexico, on February 18, 2007. An Ajo native, he was making his home in Mesa. Mass was celebrated in Ajo February 23. Douglass Funeral Home.
•  Bernie Berry will celebrate his 92nd birthday at at party at the Ajo Federated Church at 1 p.m. on Saturday, March 3.
*  Margaret Anderson and Jim Snyder were married in Las Vegas on January 26.
•  Arhianna Angelica Lozano was born January 31, 2007, in Kingman to Sherrie Canez and Miguel Lozano.
February 21, 2007
•  A health fair, with a variety of tests, lots of information and a dash of fun will be held at Desert Senita Community Health Center on Saturday. The library will be site for lectures, as will the Ajo Community Center. A radio-controlled plane expo will be held at Wade's Hanger.
•  The Ajo/Gibson Volunteer Fire Department is made up of a few dedicated people. They need money and a few more good men and women.
•  The new JTED (Joint Technical Education District) had a board meeting in Tucson. Possible programs for implementation were discussed.
•  The Sonoran Shindig on March 17 will again feature a photo contest for all ages as an young artist poster contest. For information, call the Cabeza Prieta National Wildlife Refuge at 520-387-6483.
•  Weather is getting warmer, though the occasional rain makes temperatures dip. High last week was 70F while the low was 45F, according to Phelps Dodge.
• No obituaries or death notices appeared in the February 21 issue of the Ajo Copper News.
•  Zach Tarver, 9, made a quilt top which will be finished by his grandmother and sent to wounded military personnel.
•  Emily Nixon, Kayla Leon, Linda Guan, Katie Fout, and America Peruse were inducted into National Honor Society at Ajo High School.
•  Lean & Alan Killing were named valentine queen & king at the Senior Nutrition Program.
•  Katherine LeMaster and Bobbye Childs were crowned sweethearts of their respective chapters of Beta Sigma Phi.
February 14, 2006
•  A concert Sunday afternoon by the Tucson Arizona Boys Chorus leads the week's entertainment. There will also be a house concert by Chuck Suchy on Friday, a free kids' movie at the library on Wednesday, as well as the normal assortment of lectures, classes, meetings, and food sales.
•  The changeover from The Stockmen's Bank to National Bank of Arizona takes place at the end of the week. Bank customers have already been sent information about the change as well as new credit and debit cards.
•  Nola Massey was assaulted and robbed at her Ajo Thrift Store on Saturday afternoon, February 10. The Pima County Sheriff's Department is investigating.
•  The Ajo school board discussed the school's computer system at its February 7 meeting. Controversy is rising over the possibility of the board hiring someone to maintain the system at wages that exceed what teachers make. The centralization of the school's system was also talked about.
•  The Sheriff's Auxiliary Volunteers are looking for more local people to join them.
• A planned power outage to allow Ajo Improvement Company to put a new substation online was announced. The outage lasted longer than expected.
•  Canuto DeLaTorre, 73, died January 7, 2007, in Tucson. A longtime Ajo resident, he was retired from Phelps Dodge. Visitation is Friday at Douglass Funeral Home, followed by rosary at Immaculate Conception Catholic Church. Mass will be celebrated at 10 a.m. on Saturday, February 17. Douglass Funeral Home.
•  Rick Bekel, 68, died February 5, 2007, in Idaho. He and his wife retired to Ajo in 1995. Services were held in Idaho. Sherman-Knapp
•  Serina Deanna Leon was born January 6, 2007, in Mesa to Susanna Leon of Ajo.
•  Harmony Christine Hansen was born February 1, 2007, in Wolf Point, Montana to former Ajo resident Amanda Hansen.
•  Happy Birthday Margarita David, Hop David, Nathaniel Abril, Cary Lockamy, Chelsea Abril, Pili & Mariah!
•  Carmen G. Maya is celebrating her 94th birthday on Valentine's Day.
•  Ajo gardener Paul Vasquez has been named president of Tucson Bonsai Society.
•  PFC  Erik Rydeen completed Marine Corps basic training.
February 7, 2006
•  Western Pima County Community Council met February 1 and heard a report on the recent blood drive and an update on the roping arena. Despite poor response to the poll on the arena, WPCCC member John Wyatt says many people are concerned and a petition is being started. Guest speakers were Sylvia Sanora of Catholic Social Service and Nancy Richeson of PPEP. Mary Kralovec was appoint to represent the Lukeville area on the council.
•  The annual fiddlers contest and the annual quilt show were popular events over the weekend. This weekend will se Valentine dances, the CD release parting for Priminition, and several other events.
•  Curley School auditorium is now functional. Renovation of two buildings will be complete this spring. A grand opening may be held in April.
•  Demolition work continues at the Phelps Dodge mine in Ajo. If the mine whistle is restored it will have to be moved to a new location.
•  The changeover from The Stockmen's Bank to the National Bank of Arizona will take place next week.
•  Ma. Reyes Uriarte Salcido, 78, died January 29 in Phoenix. She was a native of Ajo who have lived here since 1948 but also called Sonoyta, Sonora, Mexico, home. Mass was celebrated in her chapel in Sonoyta on February 3. Douglass Funeral Home & J Warren Funeral; Services.
•  Lucia R. Pino, 71, died January 31 in Phoenix. She was born in Ajo and had returned to Ajo to live about 15 years ago. Her ashes will be scattered.
• Ralph Hyde, 86, died in Tucson on January 11. He had lived in Ajo since 1997. Services and burial were in California.
•  Services for ES "Bud" Walker were held in Tucson (see below).
•  Services, with honors by fellow law enforcement officers, were held February 3 for Danny Maldonado (see below).
•  Alice Kendall will celebrate her 90th birthday on Monday, February 12.
•  Happy birthday to Carla Chatham, Joseph Jaye Bejarano, and Tony Montes.
• Ed Rydeen was featured in the 2007 Toys and Joys scare model woodworking catalog.

January 31, 2007
•  Ajo's busiest week, headlined by the 29th annual Old Time Fiddlers Contest and the Piecemakers' annual quilt show, is starting. There's also cookouts, bingo, library lectures, a revival, food sales, classes, and meetings.
•  Three teachers have started working at the Ajo schools recently: Fred Fout, Ann Elise Frazier, and Shawnmarie Powell.
•  An increase in passport applications is bringing the Superior Court Clerk representative to Ajo more often. The increase is attributed to the new requirement for passports for US citizens to re-enter the country by air after travel to Mexico, Canada, and other nearby areas. Information can be found at www.travel.state.gov.
•  Opinion Poll: Some people would like Phelps Dodge to repair the siren that used to sound at noon and 9 p.m. and have it mark those hours again.
•  Ajo saw a trace of rain in the past week with temperatures ranging from 33F to 71F.
•  Margaret G. Withers died January 17, 2007, in Prescott. She lived in Ajo from 1951 to 2002.A family service will be held in March. Douglass Funeral Home and Hampton Funeral Home.
•  Danny Maldonado died January 28 at his home in Ajo.
He was a lifelong resident of Ajo and was a Pima County Sheriff's Dept. corrections sergeant.Services are pending through Douglass Funeral Home.
•  Maria Magdalena Mullady, 54, died at her home in Alabama on January 10, 2007. She has family in Ajo.
•  E.S. "Bud" Walker, 80, died January 28, 2007, in Tucson. He was a former Ajo resident and former Pima County Supervisor and a seven-term member of the Arizona State legislature. Services will be held at Adair Funeral Home's Avalon Chapel in Tucson on February 1.
•  Leilani Corrina Perriello was born in Phoenix on December 6, 2006, to Anthony Perriello & Christina Valenzuela of Ajo.
•  Jessica Mann was the Ajo Rotary Club student guest for January.
•  The Plaza Deli is again open with Melanie Hemenway as manager.
January 24, 2007
•  The projected costs of the Dark Sky streetlight upgrade for  the APS service area in Ajo have fallen from an initial estimation of more than $100,000 to about $35,000 to $45,000.  Local APS lineman Scott Boyd felt the latest number compiled by WPCCC for upgrading street-lights low since repairs are also needed and many fixtures do not meet Dark Sky standards. He also noted that if the Dark Sky project in Ajo was not resolved by 2011, streetlights will be turned off and it could take about two years to engineer and install a new streetlight system.
•  Thieves have been busy in Ajo. Copper electrical wiring was missing last week from the Curley School restoration project when work crews attempted to energize circuits in Building One. The food bank was broken into and burgled last week; manager Karen Galliazzo found long, empty shelves where food had once been, the telephone and coffee pot were also missing, and the microwave oven was deposited near the jimmied back door.
•  Emergency crews from Pima County Sheriff's Department, Ajo/Gibson Volunteer Fire Department, Ajo Ambulance, and Southwest Gas Company responded Monday afternoon to a site behind the Dollar General Store where a gas line was struck during trenching operations for fiber optic cable installation. In a separate emergency, crews responded to a nearby house where a chair was on fire.
•  American Legion Post 10 is sponsoring its annual chili cook-off at the VFW hall on Saturday, January 27, starting at 9 a.m.  Other events this week include a movie and a lecture at the Salazar-Ajo Branch Library this week, an Ajo Movie Nights presentation of The Sentinel, and several sports events and classes. Pima County Natural Resources, Parks & Recreation continues to offers classes and sports for all ages.
•  The Ajo Community Players received rave reviews for their production of Ancestral Voices.
•  Bitterly cold weather continued in a winter that had been warmer than usual.
•  Paul W. Colarich, Sr., 90, of Sun City, died Friday, January 12, 2007. He was an Ajo businessman for many years. Funeral services were held January 19 at the LDS Church in Sun City.
•  Tessie Johnson Marty, 82, died January 14, 2007, in Atascadero, California. She lived in Ajo as a young woman before moving to Paso Robles, California. Her remains were interred at Paso Robles Cemetery. A celebration of her life will be held at 2 p.m. on Saturday, January 27, at the Paso Robles Senior Center. Kuehl-Nicolay Funeral Home.
•  The Rev. Joseph Baker, pastor of Holy Family Catholic Church, in Tucson, died Sunday afternoon, January 14, 2007, after a brief illness. He served as a transitional deacon at Immaculate Conception Catholic Church on his way to the priesthood. Mass was celebrated at St. Augustine's Cathedral in Tucson; interment followed at Holy Hope Cemetery. Valley Funeral Home of Tucson.
•  Kerry Williams received her bachelor’s degree in business administration in marketing, a certificate in international business, and a dual minor in Spanish and Latin America studies from Northern Arizona University.
•  Pancho Vega celebrated his 80th birthday with his wife Golla and daughter Chalia Garcia at the American Citizens Social Club on Saturday. Many other family members and friends were on hand for the festive event. Vega officially turns 80 on January 28.
January 17, 2007
•  Big Sky Communications, a contractor to Table Top Telephone Company, is installing fiber optic cable that will ultimately link Mexico, the Tohono O’odham Nation, Ajo, and Phoenix with phone and Internet service. Upon completion, the fiber optic network will take over as the primary route of communication, allowing the current microwave-link system to become a backup. The project will be done in two phases and is scheduled for completion in February.
•  Several waterlines broke as a hard freeze hit the area. Reports from residents with outdoor thermometers claimed nighttime lows hit from 22˚F to 18˚F in low-lying spots.
•  At the school board meeting on January 11, the board elected John Byrnes as president and Lisa Rossi as clerk, heard the superintendent’s report, hired and accepted resignations, reviewed a JTED wish list, reviewed the new high school schedule, and set board meeting times and dates.
•  Carter McKune of the Arizona Department of Transportation, spoke at the Ajo library about the sidewalk installation project that will stretch along the west side of Highway 85 from Sahuaro to Rasmussen roads and will include ramadas and landscaping.
•  Entertainment seekers can attend two events this weekend, Ancestral Voices, presented by the Ajo Community Players, and Operatunity, sponsored by the Ajo Council for the Fine Arts. There are also several lectures, food sales, parties, and meetings in the week ahead plus the Ajo  Garden Club's regular road clean-up.

•  Augustin Ethan Reyna, 16, of Hidden Valley, died in an accident on January 7, 2007. Mass was celebrated  January 16, in Immaculate Conception Catholic Church. Burial was in the Ajo Cemetery. Warren Funeral Service Cole & Maud Gardens of Casa Grande and Douglass Funeral Home

•  Adelle Decheine is delivering petitions to businesses around town in hopes of having the old Phelps Dodge mine whistle repaired and returned to its former routine of announcing noon and 9 p.m. for Ajo residents.
•  Happy birthdays Patrick Marquez, Franklin Jones, Louie Lopez.
January 10, 2007
•  The annual meeting of the International Sonoran Desert Alliance was held on Saturday in the ISDA classrooms with a standing-room-only crowd. Outgoing board president Joe Joaquin introduced incoming president Jim Reiman.
•  The Western Pima County Community Council met on January 4 at the Ajo Community Center. Representatives from Pima County and Phelps Dodge discussed renovating the roping arena and other bond proposals, the concern over lead in Ajo’s water, and a blood drive. New WPCCC members Chris Dimitrakopoulos, John Wyatt, and Debbie Morrow were introduced.

•  The old roping grounds on Well Road north of Ajo have been unused for years and are in bad shape. Renovation would be costly. The county is exploring several options and wants the community's opinion as to which is the best.
•  Robert Quintanar, chief environmental engineer for Phelps Dodge, says recent routine sampling detected excessive levels of lead in Ajo’s water in five of 24 households sampled. Results are still preliminary, but there does not appear to be any lead in the source water. He said older homes across the country are experiencing this problem; however, it was not yet possible to say where the source of the problem in
Ajo is. Results of a second round of tests should be available by the end of February.
•  Hollister "Hop" David, Amy Runge, and Lisa Rossi were sworn in as members of the school board.
•  Secretary of the Interior Dirk Kempthorne listened to a briefing on impacts to the Cabeza Prieta National Wildlife Refuge from refuge manager Roger DiRosa during the secretary’s visit to Arizona last Wednesday. Kempthorne toured the border along the refuge, Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument, Tohono O’odham Nation, the Buenos Aires NWR, and BLM land.
•  Leona DeHaas, 63, died in Ajo on December 29, 2006. She was born in Ajo on May 18, 1943, the daughter of Pauline (LaChusa) & Phillip Childs. Funeral services were held Ajo Indian Assembly of God Church on Saturday morning, January 6. Burial was at Ten Mile Cemetery. Douglass Funeral Home.
•  Daniel Steven Manuel, Sr., 64, died December 29, 2006, at Casa de la Luz Hospice in Tucson. He was born February 17, 1942, in Pia-Oik. Mass was celebrated Saturday morning, January 6, by Father Tom Frost. Burial was in Pia-Oik.
•  Roland A. McMaster, 95, died Wednesday, January 3, 2007, in the Desert Life Rehabilitation Center in Tucson. He came to Ajo in 1988. Services were held at 11 a.m. on Tuesday, January 9, in the Full Gospel Fellowship Church. Burial was in the Ajo Cemetery. Douglass Funeral Home.
•  Mary Millsap came back to Ajo to celebrate her 101st birthday with family and friends. A party was held at the home of longtime friends Jeanette & Ron Nicholls with about fifteen people attending. She now lives in California with her daughter & son-in-law, Bobbye & Elmer Yarberry.
•  Caden Andreas Alegria was born in Banner Thunderbird hospital in Phoenix, on  January 4, 2007, to Loretto & Margo Alegria of Ajo.
January 3, 2007
•  The new Second Avenue bridge will be dedicated this Thursday, January 4, at 4 p.m. in a ceremony held at Second Avenue and Railroad Drive. Debris accumulated at the old bridge and contributed to flooding of homes in the area during severe storms in 2001 and 2003, prompting Pima County to replace the bridge.
•  Excessive lead has been found in the water in some  Ajo homes. The extent of the problem, and its source, are still under investigation though it has been noted that not all homes have excessive lead levels in their water. It is suspected some of the lead may be coming from plumbing in the homes.
•  Esperanza Avenue will be closed to traffic for an estimated three weeks beginning Tuesday, January 2. It will be closed for sewer and water line work from the five-way intersection in front of Curley School to the ramp that accesses the courtyard behind the main building.
•  The International Sonoran Desert Alliance will hold their annual meeting on Saturday, January 6, at 1:30 p.m. at the ISDA offices at 400 W. Vananda.

•  Virgie Kreger, 81, died December 12, 2006, in a Phoenix hospice after a prolonged illness. She was an Ajo resident. A memorial service will be held at the VFW hall at 3 p.m. on Saturday, January 6. All who knew her are invited to attend.
• Consuelo M. Parra, 88, died December 23, 2006, at her daughter's home in Harrah, Oklahoma. She was a longtime Ajo resident. Graveside services were held in the Ajo Cemetery on December 29. Douglass Funeral Home.
•  Briana Lynette Soto was graduated from Northern Arizona University on December 15 with bachelor's degree in social and behavioral science with a major in criminal justice.
•  The engagement of Chelsea Nicole Soyster and Brian Andrew King has been announced.
•  Specialist Dan Odom of the US Army's 4th Infantry Division finished his tour in Iraq in December and came home with many stories to tell. He is hoping to enter West Point in the fall.
•  The Curley School renovation team found a wallet on a rafter in the auditorium. Items in the wallet showed it belonged to Patrick Walters who said the wallet ended up in the rafters around 1987 during some youthful horseplay. 

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