It’s hard to believe anything could top last year’s Coastal Cleanup Day, when Bear Creek High School students found a Pearl Harbor-era letter written by a military policeman and were able to return it to his family.
But it’s worth trying.
Hundreds of volunteers are expected to return to San Joaquin County waterways on Saturday. Their primary goal, of course, is to remove unsightly garbage from the smallest cigarette butts to fat tires and refrigerators.
But while they’re at it, they’ll keep an eye out for strange and unusual finds, like the backpack full of crabs that someone stumbled onto last year at a Half Moon Bay beach, or the live fish found in a suitcase full of water in San Diego County, or the coconut wrapped in a T-shirt at Lodi Lake.
In San Joaquin County last year, volunteers scooped up 31,691 pounds of trash. This year, the effort is being expanded from 12 to 15 sites, most of which are open to volunteers from the general public. Visit sjcleanwater.org and click on “volunteer information” for specific locations.
Last year, Bear Creek student Duc Nguyen was picking up trash along the north bank of Mosher Slough beneath the Don Avenue bridge when he spotted a handwritten letter that appeared to be in good condition.
Bearing the coat of arms of Fort Eustis, Virginia, the letter written by a man who signed it only as “George” informed his mother that he was shipping out within a week and wouldn’t be home for Christmas that year. It was sent eight days after the Pearl Harbor attack.
Without a last name, there were no clues to help the students identify the writer. But not…
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