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Biologist: At least 100M trees stressed for water

An exclusive look at a preliminary map produced by biologist Greg Asner, of the Carnegie Institution for Science in Palo Alto, shows where trees in Tuolumne County are more starved for water than others due to the four-year drought (blue means more water in the canopies, while brown means less water). Asner believes there are at least 100 million drought-stressed trees throughout the state. Courtesy Greg Asner.
 An alarming discovery suggests this year’s explosion of dead trees in the southern and central Sierra Nevada may only be the beginning of a much larger trend for California forests.

High angle sports in Yosemite: Life on the edge

Kimberly Weglin walks barefoot on a 220-foot highline stretched between Eichorn Pinnacle and the summit ridge of 10,911-foot Cathedral Peak on Aug. 10. Ryan Jenks / Courtesy photo.
 Yosemite Valley is home to some of the tallest vertical cliffs in the world, including El Capitan, the largest single solid block of granite on Earth.

Three men shot to death in Rail Road Flat identified

The identities of three men killed Tuesday in a shooting near Rail Road Flat have been released.

Terry Glen Looney Jr., 44, of Waterford, Wesley David Smith, 46, of Snelling, and Robert Daniel Haney, 60, of Modesto, all died of gunshot wounds, said Calaveras County Coroner Kevin Raggio.


Calendar for Oct. 23, 2015

Vital Stats for Oct. 23, 2015

TUD sewer upgrades in works

Tuolumne Utilities District contract crews started work this week on $1.3 million in sewer  upgrades in the Gibbs Estates and other Racetrack Road-area neighborhoods.

Sheriff, CHP to address crime at Groveland town hall meet

Crime will be the focus of a town hall meeting in Groveland scheduled for early next month. 

Columbia State Park Lamplight tours set

Columbia State Historic Park and Friends of Columbia has announced the theme of this year’s Lamplight Tour, “The Thing That Saved Columbia.” 

Vets Corner: Vietnam Cavalry veterans sought

On Nov. 21, 1966, C Company, 1st Battalion, 5th Cavalry Regiment, fought a deadly battle at Ph Athena, Cambodia. The company sustained 33 killed in action in a short time.

Bret Harte eyes 4th victory vs. Riverbank

Last week, Bret Harte fumbled the ball four times vs. Amador en route to a 34-7 defeat in Angels Camp.

Wildcats go for 2nd straight MLL title vs. Buffs

The Sonora Wildcats had fun Wednesday at football practice. There were smiles, jokes and laughter.

Preuss to make varsity debut

Calaveras’ Noah Preuss carries the ball in practice Tuesday in San Andreas. Guy Dossi / Union Democrat, Copyright 2015.
 The Trojans had a horse.

President Roosevelt and Truman had the Manhattan Project. 

And the Calaveras Redskins have Noah Preuss. 

Fulkerson returns, to play QB for Bears

Summerville’s Eli McLaurin makes a recpetion Wednesday during practice in Tuolumne. McLaurin has caught more passes than any receiver in the area. Maggie Beck / Union Democrat, Copyright 2015.
 Jake Fulkerson has led the Summerville Bears onto the field the last four Friday nights. While his teammates were dressed in their battle gear, Fulkerson wore a No. 16 jersey, a Summerville hat and shorts.

New church organ has classic sounds

Tom Sharpe and Larry Kram stand together in front of the new organ inside St. Matthew Lutheran Church in Sonora. Lydia Browning / Union Democrat, Copyright 2015.
 St. Matthew Lutheran Church in East Sonora has replaced its 30 year-old organ with a new digital pipe organ. 

House OKs McClintock default prevention bill

The U.S. House of Representatives on Wednesday passed legislation by Mother Lode Congressman Tom McClintock, R-Roseville, intended to avert the nation’s first-ever default on debt payments.

Kids learn about health, emergency responders

Paramedics demonstrate how a gurney and ambulance work to a group of Copperopolis Elementary School kindergartners. Maggie Beck / Union Democrat, Copyright 2015.
 A visit to the emergency room can be a scary trip for young children.

Large turnout anticipated for hearing on controversial discount store proposal

About 200 people, most in opposition, attend an earlier forum on the proposed Dollar General store in Columbia. Courtesy photo.
 A proposed Dollar General store in Columbia continues to court controversy.

Soulsbyville Elementary School cafeteria going green

Soulsbyville Elementary School fourth graders eat lunch Thursday from new green trays. The students are (front to back): left row — Mckayla Marenco, Gabrielle Andrews (obscured) and Ashley Keith; right row — Cloyie Richie, Nevaeh Moonan and Destini Petts. Sean Carson / Union Democrat, Copyright 2015.
 Soulsbyville Elementary School student Dean Trimeloni has a new job on the “green line,” an environmentally friendly addition to the school cafeteria launched this month. 

Poverty in the foothills: About 12,600 residents in Tuolumne and Calaveras counties affected

Sonora might be one of the “Richest Small Towns in America,” but thousands of Mother Lode residents are living in poverty.  


Gov. Brown signs off on Moke River Wild and Scenic study

The Mokelumne River flows Thursday under the Middle Bar Bridge. Gov. Jerry Brown Oct. 9 signed the Mokelumne Wild and Scenic River study bill. Maggie Beck / Union Democrat, Copyright 2015.
 Between Calaveras and Amador counties, beyond a winding stretch of highway along steep hillsides, lies a river within a canyon.

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