Breast Cancer Survivors Assemble Outside Huntington Hospital

By Deborah Brancic, Pasadena Now Correspondent

Lolita Lopez, reporter for NBC4, is a breast cancer survivor. Lopez was still sore from her recent mastectomy as she pressed her palms on the hospital wall to leave a pink handprint. Photo: Deborah Brancic
Lolita Lopez, reporter for NBC4, is a breast cancer survivor. Lopez was still sore from her recent mastectomy as she pressed her palms on the hospital wall to leave a pink handprint.
Photo: Deborah Brancic

It was a pink sunrise Saturday morning in front of the Huntington Hospital, as over 200 volunteers gathered outside a 4,000-sq-ft exterior wall to paint. Hospital staff, patients, family members and members of the community donned pink T-shirts as they dipped brushes and rollers into trays filled with pink paint to coat the wall in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Continue reading

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Pasadena Congresswoman Kicks Off Domestic Violence Awareness Campaign

By Deborah Brancic, Pasadena Now Correspondent

Congresswoman Judy Chu speaks at a press conference on Monday, to kick-off a domestic violence campaign. Photo: Deborah Brancic
Congresswoman Judy Chu speaks at a press conference on Monday, to kick-off a domestic violence campaign.
Photo: Deborah Brancic

The figures for domestic violence in the U.S. can be staggering when examined in aggregate.

According to Safe Horizon, the nation’s leading victim assistance organization, which is based in New York City, 1 in 4 women will experience domestic violence at some point in their lifetime. Further, women are more likely to be killed by an intimate partner than men, and women between the ages of 20 and 24 are at the greatest risk of becoming victims of domestic violence. Continue reading

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Pasadena Unified Approves $3.6 Million Common Core Rollout

By Deborah Brancic, Pasadena Now Correspondent

The Pasadena Unified Board of Education passed several items at the board meeting Thursday night, including the spending plan for allocation of Common Core Standards Initiative Rollout. There was a brief discussion on the specifics of the fund allocation, with a final result being the passage of the plan with no changes.

PUSD Chief Academic Officer Brian McDonald presented the proposed allocation of approximately $3.6 million, a one-time Prop 98 grant apportioned by the state. The spending plan called for roughly $1.6 million to be spent on professional development, about $2M to be spent on technology, and $30,000 to be spent on instructional materials. Continue reading

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“Student Recovery Day” Draws Dozens of Volunteers in a Community Effort

By Deborah Brancic, Pasadena Now Correspondent

Rudy Ramirez, Principal of San Rafael Elementary School, and Kelsey Garcia, counseling intern at Pasadena High School and Eliot Middle School, leaving papers notifying a resident about the campaign and providing a list of support services to help get kids back on track. Photo: Deborah Brancic

Rudy Ramirez, Principal of San Rafael Elementary School, and Kelsey Garcia, counseling intern at Pasadena High School and Eliot Middle School, leaving papers notifying a resident about the campaign and providing a list of support services to help get kids back on track.
Photo: Deborah Brancic

Over four dozen volunteers arrived at the Pasadena High School (PHS) early Wednesday morning to kick off Pasadena Unified School District (PUSD) Student Recovery Day, dubbed the “I’m In” campaign. Each group of volunteers received names and addresses for students who were previously enrolled in PUSD schools, in an effort to track down non-attending students and determine the cause. Continue reading

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Women have a new place to train: JP jiu jitsu studio offers women’s-only class

By Deborah Brancic

Lucy Montgomery demonstrates the four finger grip for her students From left: Jennifer Tisdell, Lucy Montgomery, Maria Santiago, Al Bibeau Photo: Deborah Brancic

Lucy Montgomery demonstrates the four finger grip for her students
From left: Jennifer Tisdell, Lucy Montgomery, Maria Santiago, Al Bibeau
Photo: Deborah Brancic

Women in the martial arts have recently come to the forefront – most notably, when Kayla Harrison, 22, of Ohio, won the U.S. the gold medal in Judo at the summer Olympics last year. For women in the Jamaica Plain neighborhood who wish to explore this world themselves, there is finally a place that is both local and easily accessible, with a focus on educating women. JP has a new Brazilian Jiu Jitsu studio, Mass Bay BJJ on Centre Street, which is working to attract women to the sport.

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Medical release of prisoners may be one solution to MA budgetary problems

By Deborah Brancic

One issue not often discussed is the incarceration of the elderly and the terminally ill. With the baby-boom generation now approaching retirement age, their incarcerated counterparts are consuming thousands of dollars worth of resources, which may put a strain on the Commonwealth. If released, these inmates could qualify for one of many public assistance programs, receive care from hospitals such as Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute or Brigham and Women’s Hospital, and be comforted by loved ones in their final days. Although not much is being done, one MA senator is trying to change this. Continue reading

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Newly stationed local firefighter remains positive after Boston Marathon bombings

By Deborah Brancic

Brian Casey has been stationed at the Longwood fire house since November 2012. Photo: Deborah Brancic

Brian Casey has been stationed at the Longwood firehouse since November 2012.
Photo: Deborah Brancic

On that eventful day in Boston, almost three months ago, many lives were affected. Emergency personnel were deployed to the scene of the Boston Marathon in droves — ambulance crews, doctors, police, and firefighters. One of Longwood’s newest firefighters, though not dispatched to the main site, played a part in stabilizing the situation. While his role in the event itself was ordinary, his job, to the many people he has helped, is extraordinary. Continue reading

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Longwood eatery offers healthy food options, keeps customers happy

By Deborah Brancic

Any good business will have ways to keep regulars coming back, with promises of some new item or service. As good businesses go, one well-known eatery in the Longwood Medical Area (LMA) is aspiring to hold to that standard: Souper Salad recently added a new steak burrito to its menu that has customers lining up. Located in the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, the cafe has been catering to patients, doctors, and college students alike, offering several healthy menus to accommodate any diet concerns. Knowing their guests are their livelihood, Souper Salad tries out different promotions periodically, offering customers an incentive to return.

Souper Salad is housed in the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. Photo: Deborah Brancic

Souper Salad is housed in the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center.
Photo: Deborah Brancic

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Overall sentiment in Longwood in favor of Markey’s pro-choice stance

By Deborah Brancic

In the special Senate election, Democrat Ed Markey won with a 10-point spread over Republican Gabriel Gomez, a result which seemed to be in-line with the overall views of citizens working and studying in the Longwood Medical Area (LMA). As a pro-choice politician, Markey connected with voters who did not wish to see a change in law, which could result from a Supreme Court reversal of the landmark Roe v. Wade (1973) decision. Markey’s election was significant because with two Justices approaching an age of possible retirement (Antonin Scalia, 77, and Ruth Bader Ginsburg, 80), a new Justice with a pro-life platform just may tip the scale. Continue reading

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