The Oak Leaf

3859 Crestview Drive

3859 Crestview Drive

January 3, 2018

Brittany Barlett stares through her cell phone, almost as if it is invisible. She’s recounting major milestones as her fingers frantically swipe photographs on the screen.  They range from the positive, like the first night she got to hold her newb...

A fire-ravaged neighborhood in Santa Rosa.

Flames still burn evacuees two months later

December 24, 2017

Two months. For most of us, our lives remain the same over the course of two months. For victims of the North Bay Wildfires, their lives are forever changed from what they resembled two months ago, prior to an unprecedented blaze that engulfed much of Son...

A firefighter watches a controlled burn outside the juvenile correctional facility near Kenwood.

Sonoma county strong

December 12, 2017

As she drove home, she saw the fires of hell rage in the distance. Meliza Bustos, a Santa Rosa Junior College nursing student who works at a health clinic, did not know how to process the whole scene. Heading home to Rohnert Park from San Francisco durin...

UndocuFund is just one of several organizations raising money for undocumented fire victims.

UndocuFund ayuda a personas indocumentadas

November 18, 2017

En respuesta a la destrucción que los incendios de North Bay que causaron a la comunidad de inmigrantes indocumentados, el programa UndocuFund comenzó a recaudar fondos para ayudar a las víctimas del incendio que no son representadas y que no pueden...

Rincon Valley fire investigator shares her story

Rincon Valley fire investigator shares her story

October 31, 2017

Fire Prevention Officer Cyndi Foreman woke early Monday morning in her Windsor home to radio calls of structure fires on Mark West Springs Road, and a Sheriff’s Deputy trapped by a wall of flames. Upon hearing the call, Foreman knew it was time for he...

Memories lost

Michael Barnes, Co-Features Editor

October 31, 2017

For residents of Coffey Park, the Tubbs Fire reduced lifelong memories to mounds of smouldering ash in a matter of hours. Second-year SRJC student Craig Lowry, 18, was among the residents sifting through rubble after the smoke cleared. On a day when Lowry would normally be sitting in an air-conditioned classroom, he found himself laboring under a layer of dense, toxic smoke and shoveling the remnants of a friend’s home into a wheelbarrow to aid in the search for a fir...

SRJC student narrowly escapes fire

Dakota McGranahan, Photo Editor

October 31, 2017

Fire burned everything but passion for Santa Rosa Junior College student Gena Bernabe, 19. Oct. 8 was another typical night at work for Bernabe, who served  food while the fire raged on the little TV in the corner of Applebee’s. She had no idea that her life would change that night. Driving home from work around midnight, she noticed the high winds and fiery illumination, but thought nothing of it. At home she went to bed like normal. Two hours later she awoke t...

Sonoma County residents comfort each other through teary eyes during the Day of Remembrance ceremony.

A day of remembrance. A day of togetherness.

October 28, 2017

Additional Reporting by Ali Benzerara & Rachel Edelstein   Underneath a smoke-free, clear blue sky, community members assembled together at Santa Rosa Junior College's Bailey Field on Saturday for a day of remembrance following the Nort...

A sign warns looters in Sonoma County

I’m afraid of looter shooters

October 19, 2017

I’ve learned a lot about my neighbors during the North Bay wildfires: I now know they have guns and I’m a little scared. I’ve never owned a gun. I’ve never even held a gun and I’ve never wanted to. I saw a, “YOU LOOT WE SHOOT” si...

The ROSE-ilience of a devastated community

The ROSE-ilience of a devastated community

October 15, 2017

Mikayla Butchart was tired of living in New York City. She wanted a quieter life, one where she could have more space and “refill her creative well.” After spending 15 years in the Big Apple, where she earned her Master of Fine Arts in illustrati...

Ethan De Seife and his family

SRJC instructor loses home; gofundme campaign raises over $25,000

October 15, 2017

When Ethan De Seife moved his family from Burlington, Vermont to Santa Rosa in July of last year, he didn’t know anyone. All he knew was that he had a job opportunity teaching Media 4, an introduction to mass communications class at Santa Rosa Junior Coll...

Smoke lies thick over Hidden Valley Lake, CA. Photo by David Andersen, @davidxandersen.

Shall I stay or shall I go

October 14, 2017

In Hidden Valley Lake, we watch and wait. After experiencing the Valley Fire in 2015, it isn’t any less distressing to be surrounded by the Sulphur Fire to the north, the Pocket Fire to the west, and the raging Tubbs Fire to the south. The resultan...

A student-operated publication at Santa Rosa Junior College.
North Bay fires