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1LHS Presidentís Message
Richard White

(11/2003 Newsletter)1.


   It is with a great sadness that I address the membership of the Lakeside Historical Society this month.  The last week of October was a time that none of us will ever forget. I was awakened in the predawn darkness on Sunday to be informed of the smoke filled skies and the illuminated hills northeast of town. Turning on the television, I was shocked to see the images of the fire that had already burned 6,000 acres. In disbelief I listened as the news commentator said that homes were burning and the flames were racing west through Wild Cat Canyon and Moreno Valley pushed by fierce Santa Anna winds. By 3:00 PM of that day, the fire had burned over 100,000 acres and there was no end in sight. But now the monster had a name.

   In the Cedar Fire, our community lost its sense of security as many homes burned to the ground. But worse, we lost the lives of so many friends, neighbors, and loved ones.  Through misty eyes I read the list of the 15 who perished by fire in the Cedar Fire.


Galen Galen Blacklidge, 50, Moreno, teacher
Seiler-Davis Christy-Anne Seiler-Davis, 42, Alpine
Downs Gary Edward Downs, 50, Lakeside, small-business owner
L. Pack John Leonard Pack, 28, Lakeside
Q. Pack Quynh Yen Chau Pack, 28, Lakeside
Peace Mary Lynne Peace, 54, Lakeside, nurse
Rucker Steven Rucker, 38, Novato, firefighter, died in Julian
Shacklett Stephen Shacklett, 54, Lake View Hills Estates, construction superintendent
J. Shohara James Shohara, 63, Lakeside, correctional officer
S. Shohara Solange Shohara, 43, Lakeside, correctional officer
R. Shohara Randy Shohara, 32, Lakeside
R. Sloan Robin Sloan, 45, Lakeside, Wal-Mart employee
J. Sloan Jennifer Sloan, 17, Lakeside, student
R. Westly

Ralph Marshall Westley, 77, Lakeside, retired retail clerk, discovered Monday at 1088 Barona Road.

Unknown migrant worker found mid-December in the I-15 SR-52 area.

So that the names of these victims not fade away with time, the Society is working to create a memorial marker that will keep these people alive in our memories and hearts. The location for the memorial park will be on the corner of Channel Road and Lakeside Avenue. This markerís presence should be befitting the scale of this horrendous tragedy of lives lost here during the largest fire disaster in Californiaís history. So on behalf of the Lakeside Historical Society, I am asking the County of San Diego, our community, and Society members for their support to make this memorial a reality. I feel that this project will help aid the healing process that most every one of us must endure.



  • Started in the afternoon of October 25, 2003 in the Cedar Creek Falls Area.
  • This was the worst fire in California history.
  • The fire spread at a rate of 3600 acres per hour in the first 36 hours. At one point, it spread 40,000 acres in one hour.
  • 113 injuries
  • 15 deaths
  • 2,232 homes destroyed
  • 53 homes damaged
  • 22 commercial properties destroyed
  • 566 additional structures destroyed
  • Estimated cost of fighting the fire: More than $31 million dollars.
  • Cause: Authorities believe it started when a lost hunter set a signal fire that continued to spread.
  • 280,278 acres
  • Containment Date: 03 Nov 2003
  • Control date: 05 Dec 2003

Lakeside Rodeo Grounds, 10/27/03 Eagle Peak Hwy 79 near Lake Cuyamaca -Cedar Fire 10-29-03 HOME DIST.jpg (107943 bytes) Cedar Fire 10-28-03

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