Posts Tagged ‘Oak Harbor’

Coupeville runners (l to r) Beth Dion, Elizabeth Bitting, and Deb Smith celebrate after running Sunday’s Whidbey 1/2 Marathon. (Photo courtesy Smith)

They came, they saw, they ran.

Hundreds of athletes flooded the streets of Oak Harbor Sunday, taking part in the Whidbey 1/2 Marathon.

Dylan Hartono of Lynnwood won the race, covering 13.1 miles in one hour, 12 minutes, 14.2 seconds.

The top female finisher was Lucy Ramquist of Portland, who hit the line in 1:24:35.2.

But what of Coupeville, you ask?

Cow Town had 11 runners involved in the event, or at least 11 runners who listed Coupeville as their place of residence.

Four of those 11 finished in the top five in their respective age groups, led by CHS/CMS cross country guru Elizabeth Bitting, who claimed second-place among female runners 50-54.

Deb Smith (4th in 45-49), Abby Jermasek (5th in 30-34), and Kelly Ojala (5th in 45-49) also had strong finishes.

If you want to see every runner, pop over to The Whidbey 1/2 Results (runsignup.com).


For those who just want to see Coupeville names:

Abby Jermasek (67th) 1:55:12.21
Stig Carlson (84th) 2:00:13.09
Kelly Ojala
(85th) 2:00:14.09
Elizabeth Bitting
(96th) 2:01:44.84
Deb Smith
(116th) 2:04:52.61
Michael Schwab
(121st) 2:06:17.75
Beth Dion
(156th) 2:12:49.35
Jonathan Beard
(187th) 2:20:41.15
Pat Hernandez
(333rd) 3:25:02.70
Dana Reed (338th) 3:30:52.11
Sara Maher
(349th) 3:44:27.94

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Cassidy Kendall

A fundraiser is underway to help an Oak Harbor woman badly injured in a car/pedestrian accident New Year’s Eve.

Cassidy Kendall, 23, was struck by a car while crossing the street in Oregon December 31, and suffered life-threatening injuries.

She broke her ribs, femur, pelvis, and spine, and was put in a medically-induced coma.

In an update Wednesday, her sister, Bailey Pace, detailed what Kendall has faced in the first week of 2021.

The young woman has had multiple surgeries, with a rod inserted to brace her femur, which was broken at the hip joint.

Kendall also had screws, rods, and pins inserted into her neck during spinal surgery, which will limit her mobility in her neck.

After a third surgery to piece her pelvis back together, with plates, screws, and bolts inserted, she is on a ventilation machine.

One huge positive is Kendall is out of the coma, and is able to understand and respond to commands to do things such as wiggle her toes and squeeze hands.

It’s expected she will be in a wheelchair for a minimum of three months, and will need therapy to recover the ability to swallow and walk.

Her sister has started a GoFundMe to aid Kendall and her husband, Oak Wendler, during this time.

“Thank you for all your prayers, love, and help through all of this. We are so grateful for all your support,” Pace said. “Cassidy truly has touched the lives of so many!”


To help the family, pop over to:

Fundraiser for Oak Wendler by Bailey Pace : Help Cassidy with medical bills (gofundme.com)

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An Oak Harbor man has been arrested in the 2011 Montana murder of the man seen above, Mike Crites. (Photo property of Helena Independent Record)

It’s the kind of story Ann Rule would have written.

A cold-blooded killing in Montana has led, nine years later, to an arrest on muggy Whidbey Island.

Oak Harbor resident Leon Michael Ford, 66, was arrested Wednesday and will be charged with deliberate homicide and tampering with evidence in the killing of a man whose chopped-up remains were found in trash bags in Helena back in 2011.

Both charges are felonies.

The remains of the victim, John “Mike” Crites, 48, were found in multiple locations.

Trash bags containing body parts were found at MacDonald Pass outside Helena in October 2011, followed by the discovery of more remains, including the victim’s skull, a year later near Elliston.

The two sites sit approximately 23 miles apart.

At the time of Crites death, Ford owned 15 acres north of the victim’s property northwest of Helena, according to a story in the Independent Record, a daily newspaper in Helena.

The victim and suspect were reportedly involved in a dispute concerning trespassing and property access, and were scheduled to meet on the last day Crites was seen alive.

Ford was arraigned Thursday in Island County, with his bail set at $500,000.

A second hearing has been set for Monday, Aug. 24, and law enforcement is asking for the suspect to be extradited to Lewis and Clark County, Montana.


The original story on the arrest:



A follow-up story detailing evidence allegedly linking Ford to the crime:


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A long-gone piece of Whidbey Island history. (Bob Barker photo)

Bob Barker is still in the game.

The former sage of the roundball remains arguably the most-successful coach in Coupeville High School history.

While he’s no longer stalking the sidelines during Wolf basketball games, Barker remains a go-to source for Whidbey history and interesting photographs from the past.

Today’s shot, of a historic (and long gone) Oak Harbor landmark, arrived with the following note:

Back in the days when I was involved in photography, I especially liked to take pictures of old buildings, old barns, old churches, covered bridges and scenes (both seascapes and landscapes without people in them).

This is an old barn that has since been torn down to make way for the expansion of the city of Oak Harbor on Whidbey Island.

This barn was situated behind what is now the Elks Club.

Oak Harbor was originally a Dutch community and you can see the Dutch influence in the architecture of the barn. 

This barn in its day would have to be considered the “Cadillac” of all barns.

Note the curvature of the roof. The lower portion or base of the barn was concrete and not wood. 

I wish that they had had the foresight to restore this barn as it was “one of a kind.”

I cherish this picture as it a reminder of a life that has vanished and is no more…


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If you know the driver of this car, contact local law enforcement. (Photo courtesy Johnathan Walker)

Local authorities are interested in talking to the person responsible for a nasty hit and run accident.

The driver of the black car seen in the photo was allegedly speeding on West Beach Road Monday around 6 PM, then blew through a stop sign at Libby Road, colliding with another car.

The driver and a passenger then fled the scene on foot.

The car they hit suffered extensive damage, and both occupants were injured.

One suffered a fractured vertebrae and chest contusions, while the other has chest contusions and burns on her arms from the car’s airbags deploying.

If you have information on the owner of the car, please contact the Island County Sheriff’s Department (360-679-7310) or the Oak Harbor Police Department (360-279-4600).

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