RIPON -- From the emails and voice mails:
FAMILY NEEDS HELP In December, I wrote about 9-year-old Riley Simmons, who is battling a brain tumor, and how Ripon residents quickly began raising money to help her family financially throughout their time at the University of California at San Francisco Medical Center.
Through the gofundme.com fund-raising website, they've raised nearly $14,000 and are about $1,000 shy of their goal. And they've raised more money through other events. As an avid soccer player and through school, Riley made many friends whose parents helped organize the effort.
At the same time, in the same town, 4-year-old Julissia Guzman encountered the same type of illness a brain tumor. Doctors at Children's Hospitals in Oakland and Madera diagnosed and confirmed her condition. They determined that her tumor is inoperable, and sent her home to Ripon to be with parents Pascal and Lilianna, and her brother and sister.
Much of their family lives in Mexico. The Guzmans don't have the kind of support system as do the Simmonses. Pascal works in a restaurant. Lilianna had to stop working to care for Julissia at home.
So local businessman Jim Jasper has created a similar fund-raising page for her. Visit www.gofundme.com/Please-help-Julissia.
UP PERISCOPE Last week, I wrote about the Obama-Scope the late Richard Tosaw, a former FBI agent who became an expert on the D.B. Cooper case, created for President Barack Obama's first inauguration in 2009. Tosaw sent me one.
It was a marketing item, not an invention. Tosaw did the same when Bill Clinton became president.
Monday, Bee newsroom staff member Maria Figueroa attended Obama's second inauguration in Washington, D.C., and put the old Obama-Scope to use.
After last week's column, I received an email from reader Bob Flint, who has a similar cardboard periscope he got as a child in the 1950s.
"My parents would pack us up in the '52 Hudson and go over to Monterey to watch the Bing Crosby pro-am 'Clam Bake,' " he wrote.
"We used cardboard periscopes to watch the players and movie stars of the time. I still have my 'scope' autographed by my favorite western star, Randolph Scott."
CONDOLEEZZA IS COMING Tickets for the Nov. 21 speech by former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice at Stockton's University of the Pacific go on sale today.
Rice, who served in President George W. Bush's Cabinet, will be the keynote speaker for the school's Advancing Women's Leadership, a program intended to inspire and develop women leaders.
She is no stranger to the valley. Also an accomplished pianist, Rice in 2010 played during a fund-raiser for the Salida Performing Arts Foundation at the home of Al and Kimberly Spina, generating roughly $40,000 for the cause.
The UOP event will benefit the Boys & Girls Club of Stockton. Call (209) 946-2867 or visit go.Pacific.edu/Tickets for, well, tickets. They are $25 each.
Jeff Jardine's column appears Sundays, Tuesdays and Thursdays in Local News. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org, @jeffjardine57 on Twitter or at (209) 578-2383.