Taking a look back at 2005 | SierraSun.com
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Taking a look back at 2005

Staff reports

Jan. 26: Ramirez out at Sierra CollegeSierra College President Kevin Ramirez was forced into retirement after college board trustee Aaron Klein asked Ramirez to resign on allegations that the college president shifted funds from the colleges foundation to pay for a bond campaign in March. Ramirez walked away from the deal with 18 months pay, worth roughly $252,000, three and a half years additional credit in the state teachers retirement system, up to $2,000 to attend to conferences, payout for unused vacation and free tickets to home athletic events.Feb. 25: Northstar Highlands approvedThe Placer County Planning Commission OKd Northstar Highlands, a 1,450-unit condo and townhome project, on Feb. 23. The project will nearly double the amount of residential units at the Northstar-at-Tahoe ski resort.March 2: Police seek clues in murder mysteryAfter a golfer found a large duffel bag in the Northwoods Clubhouse parking lot with a dead woman inside on Feb. 28, local police scoured the Truckee area for clues in one of Truckees biggest murder mysteries. The body turned out to be that of Cynthia D. Erler, 54, a transient who lived on the streets and in low-budget hotels in Reno. Police have not made any arrests related to her death.March 9: 2005 Junior Olympics take off in TruckeeThe 2005 United States Ski Association Junior Olympics kicked off in Truckee on March 6. The event was held at Auburn Ski Club Training Center.March 16: Missing Tahoe City woman found dead at Squaw Valley Sherry Elizabeth Bitsy Roessler, 25 of Tahoe City, was found dead in a tree well at Squaw Valley U.S.A. on March 12. Roessler, a Squaw employee, was not wearing a helmet and most likely died on impact, according to Placer County Sheriffs Office reports. She was a people person very outgoing, very friendly, always fun to be around because she was really lively, said Roesslers co-worker Rob Birney.April 6: Summit fuel spill stoppedA skier reported the smell of gas on Donner Summit in early April. The odor was coming from a fuel pipeline, owned by Kinder Morgan, buried deep beneath the snowpack. The source of the spill was located and stopped on April 4, and the cleanup effort took months.April 15: Truckee woman charged with embezzlementGlenshire resident Flori Yarborough White was tried in two counties for taking roughly $400,000 from her employer during a five-year period while she was a bookkeeper at Waterworks Radiant Heat & Plumbing in Truckee. Prosecuting attorneys called it one of the worst embezzlement cases they had ever seen. June 1: Teachers take to the streetsWith signs in hand, teachers picketed in front of the Tahoe Truckee Unified School District office, protesting the districts offer of a 1 percent cost of living increase. The teachers and school district finally reached an agreement in September.June 22: Graduates caught in senior prankTwo-students students were caught red-handed with ketchup, that is after a senior prank at Tahoe Truckee High School took an unplanned turn when the cops showed up and broke up the shenanigans, according to Truckee police reports. Before the police showed up, the teens allegedly broke into the building and spread condiments all over the floors, lockers and walls.July 1: New ag station has a price tag of $19.6 millionThe current ag station isnt fully staffed, but the California Department of Food and Agriculture decided to go forward with plans to build a new $19.6 million agriculture station in Truckee. Construction is expected to be complete in December 2006.July 6: Family searches for drowned teen at BocaThe Garrick family searched for their son, Justin Garrick, after he fell from a boat and drowned at Boca Reservoir. The search started with divers, helicopters, rescue dogs and airplanes. But a week and a half after their son went missing, the Garricks and volunteers were the only ones left in the search effort.July 13: Four-year-old killed by truckMario A. Zarate was riding his Big Wheel tricycle in Donner Creek Mobile Home Park when a pickup truck ran over him. In an effort to create a safer play area for children in the park, a group of community members got together to raise funds for a park.July 29: Manufactured housing approvedIn an effort to aid the affordable housing crisis in Truckee, the planning commission approved a manufactured home project that will be set on 10 acres bordered by Alder Creek Middle School, Coachland Mobile Home Park and Pine Forest. Spring Creeks units are expected to sell near or below $300,000 each.Aug. 19: Truckee man dies after Tahoe City stabbingA road-rage spurred incident led to an altercation between Robert Lawrence Ash, 48, and Timothy Brooks, 25, in front of a Tahoe City bagel shop. Later that day, Ash died at a Reno hospital as a result of a stab wound. Brooks, who was arrested at the scene on suspicion of attempted murder charges, is now awaiting trial on murder charges.Aug. 26: Sierraville fire ragesThe Harding Fire in Sierra County burned more than 2,000 acres. More than 300 firefighters, air tankers and helicopters fought the blaze. Fire investigators never discovered a cause of the fire, but they knew it was manmade. Oct. 5: Royal Gorge resort, 4,000 acres soldA partnership of Bay Area developers bought the largest cross country ski resort in North America and its 4,000-plus acres of land on Donner Summit. Representatives from the group said they dont intend to change the resort, but summit residents fear that thousands of acres will be open to development after the summits sewage treatment capacity is upgraded.Oct. 14: Downtown paid parking set to startTruckees downtown got 26 parking meters, arousing complaints from residents. Motorists now have to pay to park between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m.Nov. 23: Truckee High takes second state championship in two yearsThe Truckee High football team celebrated its first-ever back-to-back state championship victories at the University of Nevada after they beat Virgin Valley for the Nevada 3A state title.Dec. 9: Truckee welcomes new fire chiefAfter nearly a decade, Mike Terwilliger passed the leadership of the Truckee Fire Protection District to Bryce Keller from the North Tahoe Fire Protection District.Dec. 30: Two dead in first jet crash at Truckee Tahoe AirportTwo crew members died in a jet crash at Truckee Tahoe Airport. The cause of the crash is under investigation by the Federal Aviation Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board.


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