Wednesday, March 29, 2023

Covid Memorial Quilts at AZHC featured in Arizona Republic article

 Arizona Republic | USA TODAY NETWORK Stephanie Innes. Condensed version of the article AZCENTRAL.COM | SUNDAY, MARCH 26, 2023 | 5A with photos from the exhibit at Arizona Heritage Center at Papago Park.

University research specialist lost her 74-year-old mother, Telesfora Gonzalez, to COVID-19 more than two years ago, on Jan. 15, 2021. Her mother, a bilingual community leader and family matriarch, died before the COVID-19 vaccine was widely available, which is one of the many thoughts that occupy Pyles in a way she finds difficult to describe.
If anyone asks Queen Creek resident Socorro Gonzalez Pyles how she’s doing, she’ll typically respond with a quick, “I’m good,” even though she knows that’s not true. “It’s like you are so close to the day before, when they were still alive, even though two years have passed,” she said. “I’d call it a stunned feeling, like when you are speechless and holding your breath and everything is suspended in time.”
After more than 33,000 COVID-19 deaths in Arizona, plus other pandemic woes, many state residents such as Pyles are struggling with mental health issues, including grief, loneliness and trauma. It’s a crisis created over the past three years that could have long-term public health consequences, including shorter lifespans
Vanielle Blackhorse, a member of the Navajo Nation, lost her 28-year-old sister, Valentina Blackhorse, to COVID-19 on April 23, 2020. Her father, Danny Blackhorse, died of cancer in 2021. “I didn’t grieve how a person should grieve. I had to step up, especially after my dad passed,” she said. Vanielle still remembers the last communication she had with her older sister. It was a text message that said, “I love you. I know you’ll get better. I’ll see you when you get home.” But Valentina probably never saw it. Vanielle sent the message about 15 minutes be- fore the health clinic in Kayenta called to say Valentina had passed away.
Gauging mental health needs is not an exact science, because there are people who need help and never seek it out. And the level of need depends on who you ask.
Whether we acknowledge or recognize it, we’ve all been affected by COVID-19, even if we didn’t lose a loved one to the virus, according to longtime bereavement researcher Dr. Toni Miles, a physician, professor emeritus at the University of Georgia and visiting scholar at the Rosalynn Carter Institute for Caregivers.
“What I’ve learned over the years is that the volume of deaths in a community has an effect on community health,” said Miles, who began researching bereavement when she was a medical resident during the AIDS crisis during the 1980s. “We’re still counting the bodies with COVID. There are people who died of the disease and then there are people who died because their connection to the person who died.”
What Miles means is that whether it’s deaths due to COVID-19 or to AIDS, often other, associated, deaths occur. She gave as an example a teenager she remembers whose father died of AIDS. The teenager had asthma that she controlled, but when her dad died, she stopped taking care of herself, had an asthma attack and died. “His death killed her,” she said.
One big challenge for many individuals who were affected by a COVID-19 death is that the world appears to be moving on, “almost as if the pandemic didn’t happen,” Pyles said.
What needs to happen now is a wider public acknowledgment of the lives lost to COVID-19, said Kristin Urquiza, co-founder and co-executive director of Marked By COVID, a national organization created after Urquiza’s father, Mark Anthony Urquiza, 65, died of COVID-19 in June 2020. “It’s really important that grief is witnessed and that mourning is collective,” Kristin Urquiza said.
Marked By COVID is supporting a proposed congressional resolution to make the first Monday in March “COVID-19 Victims and Survivors Memorial Day” to memorialize those lost to the COVID-19 virus and also to recognize the suffering of those who were infected and still have side effects. The resolution was reintroduced by Rep. Greg Stanton, D-Ariz., on March 6, and companion legislation was introduced by Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass.

See insights and ads

Saturday, March 25, 2023

The Golden Rule Cafe, Mrs. Elizabeth White and Dr. Lincoln and Eleanor Ragsdale

A $500 loan made the difference for Mrs. White and The Golden Rule Cafe. She took over the restaurant in 1964 after her brother moved. Bank loans for African Americans were difficult and for a Black woman in business (impossible) in those days. Local activists Dr. Lincoln and Eleanor Ragsdale loaned her $500 through their loan company.

Honored as 2023 Arizona Historymaker, Mrs. Elizabeth White enjoyed the reception recently at the Arizona Heritage Center Museum. 2023 Arizona Historymaker Chair Diana Smith greets fellow Historical League member Lincoln Ragsdale Jr. and Mrs. Elizabeth White. Video

Congratulations to all 2023 Historymakers:

Frank Barrios

ASU President Michael Crow

Angel Delgadillo

Dolan Ellis

Ira Fulton & The Fulton Family

Terry Goddard

Denise Resnik

Dr. Jeffrey M. Trent

Dr. Daniel D. Von Hoff

Mrs. Elizabeth White

Friday, March 24, 2023

AHS Staff helps at 2023 Arizona Historymakers Announcement Event

AHS Staff worked closely with Historical League members to make the 2023 Arizona Historymakers Announcement a successful event. Looks like they enjoyed the event and we are grateful for their support.
Congratulations to 2023 Arizona Historymakers:
Frank Barrios
ASU President Michael Crow
Angel Delgadillo
Dolan Ellis
Ira Fulton & The Fulton Family
Terry Goddard
Denise Resnik
Dr. Jeffrey M. Trent
Dr. Daniel D. Von Hoff
Mrs. Elizabeth White

Wednesday, March 22, 2023

Lots of activity at 2023 Arizona Historymakers Announcement event Feb. 2023

Wanting to record the memories at the 2023 Arizona Historymakers Announcement, this creative attendee used her cell phone. It worked well to capture the speech of Historymaker Program Chair Diana Smith at the podium. 

to 2023 Arizona Historymakers with official celebration October 14, 2023:
Frank Barrios
ASU President Michael Crow
Angel Delgadillo
Dolan Ellis
Ira Fulton & The Fulton Family
Terry Goddard
Denise Resnik
Dr. Jeffrey M. Trent
Dr. Daniel D. Von Hoff
Mrs. Elizabeth White

Conversations were enthusiastic as attendees visited with 2023 Arizona Historymakers. Smiling faces tell the story of the successful event. It was time to celebrate and visit with the crowd supporting the new 2023 Arizona Historymakers.

Talented League member Linda Corderman will help co-ordinate the new 2023 Historymaker exhibit at Arizona Heritage Center. We are so grateful to have her participating in the displays for the 2023 Arizona Historymakers.

Sunday, March 19, 2023

Olive Mill Tour

Olive oil, anyone? We had a very educational tour of Olive Mill on Thursday, March 16. Historical League member Katie Tovar remarked, "We had a class called Olive Oil 101. We started outside and our guide, Wolfgang, gave us basics about the groves and trees.

Then we went inside to the actual mill where the olives are processed. We learned about the milling process and how to shop for the oil.

The part that impressed me the most was learning about the health benefits."

The marketplace was super busy. They sell everything you can imagine that is Olive related. There is even a line of beauty products. 

Thanks to Tour Chair Lynn Wood organizing another great trip for the Historical League. Thanks also to photographers Katie Tovar and Claire Nullmeyer for fun photos of the Olive Mill tour. Katie said they learned a lot, sharing photos of "some on their oldest olive trees. A tree must be at least 15 years old to start producing olives."

Margaret Baker, Susan Dale, President Chris Hackett

Saturday, March 18, 2023

Scottsdale Progress on 2023 Historymakers Announcement Event

Since 1992, the Arizona Historical Society has partnered with the Arizona Historical League in Tempe to induct a class of living history makers each year. 

But after inducting its 2019 class of Historymakers, the pandemic brought the annual event to a halt – until Feb. 23, when nine new individuals and one family were formally introduced as the 2023 class of Historymakers at an official ceremony held at the Arizona Heritage Center. Six of the 10 inductees attended the ceremony. 

This year’s class includes:

Frank Barrios, a civil engineer who worked on flood control, the Central Arizona Project and policy for the Arizona Department of Water Resources. He served three years on the Central Arizona Project Board after his retirement.

He also became instrumental in social issues involving Mexican Americans and the homeless through St. Vincent de Paul which garnered him the Hon-Kachina Award for Volunteer Service and the title of an Arizona Culture Keeper.

Dr. Michael M. Crow, president of Arizona State University and the 16th in school history who has spearheaded ASU's rapid and groundbreaking transformative evolution into one of the world’s best public metropolitan research universities. 

Angel Delgadillo, who began his career with a barber shop in Seligman along Route 66. After his business was bypassed by the opening of US 40, he doggedly built support from local businesses, counties and the state to make Route 66 a historic road. In 1987 he founded the Historic Route 66 Association of Arizona; and in 1988, 159 miles of the “Mother Road was dedicated as historic. 

Delgadillo also finally retired from his barbershop in 2022 at age 95.

Dolan Ellis, who has penned more than 300 songs and ballads about Arizona, its history and its people, earning him the honor of “Arizona’s Official State Balladeer” for over 55 years. 

He was also a member of the Grammy-award-winning 60s folk group “The New Christy Minstrels” and established the Arizona Folklore Preserve in Southern Arizona’s Ramsey Canyon, where Arizona songs and stories have been presented and preserved for over 25 years.

Ira Fulton and the Fulton Family have become a name synonymous with the state and the two schools at Arizona State University are named after them. 

Ira Fulton was born in Tempe in 1931 and grew Fulton Homes into one of the nation’s largest private home builders. 

He and his wife, Mary Lou, who met as students at ASU, were partners in their philanthropy as her dream was to be a teacher, but she quit school to raise a family. Urged by Ira, she returned to ASU to complete her teaching degree in 1975. Mary Lou passed in 2015. 

The family founded The Fulton Family Foundation in 1988 to support higher education and has made a difference for thousands of college students. Since then, The Fulton’s have donated more than $160 million to ASU for the teacher’s program and the engineering college, among other areas.

Terry Goddard, former state attorney general, Phoenix mayor and son of former governor Sam Goddard, who  has spent his life in public service, working to increase citizen participation in government, enhancing consumer protection and making government more transparent. 

Most recently, he spearheaded the Arizona voter approval of Prop. 211, the Stop Dark Money initiative in the fall of 2022. The initiative will require public disclosure of major donations used in campaign media spending. 

Though an accomplished politician and lawmaker, Goddard humbly told the Progress “I'm in awe of some of the great people that have served Arizona in the past and it's been fun to be a small part of many different aspects of our state.” 

Denise Resnik.  When her 2-year-old son Matt was diagnosed with autism in 1993, she and her husband were advised to “love, accept and plan to institutionalize” their child. Resnik committed to finding another way. 

The two did much more than that. The native Phoenician applied her business background, communications skills and energies toward co-founding the Southwest Autism Research & Resource Center, which is now a nationally renowned nonprofit serving children and adults. Its flagship property, First Place–Phoenix, opened in 2018 and = provides residents with support for honing essential life skills that lead to more independent living.

Dr. Jeffrey M. Trent, Ph.D., FACMGG is the visionary founder of the Translational Genomics Research Institute (TGen).

TGen helped revolutionize the field of precision medicine, a medical approach that takes into account an individual's genomic makeup when diagnosing and treating diseases. 

The Phoenix native's illustrious career includes serving as the founding director of the Division of Intramural Research (DIR) at the National Human Genome Research Institute of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the U.S. entity that led the international effort to map the human genome, and faculty leadership positions at the University of Michigan and the University of Arizona. 

Trent has also authored more than 400 manuscripts in the scientific literature, numerous book chapters, invited reviews and invited lectures. 

Along with his role as president and research director of TGen, he maintains an active research lab that focuses primarily on cancer, including seminal work in skin, prostate and ovarian cancer.

Dr. Daniel Von Hoff is the founding Physician-in-Chief of TGen and has devoted much of his life to laboratory and clinical development of new anti-cancer agents. 

The Scottsdale resident and his colleagues were also involved at the beginning of the development of many new therapies now used routinely for the treatment of patients with leukemias, breast, prostate, lung, colon, gallbladder, ovarian, skin and multiple other types of cancer. 

Additionally, Von Hoff led the clinical trials for FDA approval of three of the four new therapies that improve survival rates for patients with advanced pancreatic cancer. 

“In the last 40 years, it's gotten a lot better and survival has improved for every cancer there is, even pancreas cancer,” he said. “Although this is a great honor, we've got a lot of work to do, but at least this means that we are making progress.”

Elizabeth J. White, who turned 100 just days before joining her fellow Historymakers, is the owner of one of Phoenix’s “oldest and longest” owned and operated African-American establishments, The Golden Rule Cafe – affectionately called “Mrs. White’s.” 

She has weathered many storms…. including, discrimination against African-Americans and women, the business has stood the test of time.  

A divorced mother of five, she and the four youngest children moved to Phoenix in 1963 to help her brother Floyd Jimmerson in his restaurant and the church. She eventually took over the restaurant and, the society noted, followed “golden rule of feeding the body and the spirit.” 

White said she was “overflowing with joy” when she heard herself referred to as a Historymaker and called the honor a “blessing from the Lord” – a fitting saying for the business owner who is also an ordained pastor. 

Though these Historymakers were all humbled by the honor, the impact they have made continues to be felt every day and was underscored by Arizona Historical League President Christine Hackett.  “This shows that there are history makers from every corner of our state and in every category from cultural events, music arts, right medicine,” Hackett said. “There are a lot of good people that are doing a lot of wonderful things and I think this goes to highlight that.”

The next steps for these Historymakers will be scheduling an in-person interview and dropping off some props that help tell their story for an exhibition that will go on display at the Arizona Heritage Center this fall.