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Pages of the Past: A big gun at a small bank

From the archives of the Roaring Fork Valley Journal


Nov. 10, 1977

A soft spoken outlaw with “some kind of accent” was still on the loose after walking into Roaring Fork Bank (now Alpine Bank) with a .375 magnum revolver and getting away with a day-pack full of bills. The man apparently stole a CJ-5 Jeep from Carbondale Cable Co. and drove it directly to the bank just before closing time. The Jeep was found the next day up Dinkle Lake Road — giving patrolmen Fred Williams a chance to connect the crime with the person he’d seen driving it on his way to answer the bank’s silent alarm. Bank president Lynn Pittman refused to divulge the exact amount stolen, but the Journal estimated it at between $5,000 and $15,000.

In other news… The students of Colorado Mountain College were set to perform the comic operetta “Sorcerer” at the Crystal Theatre (then a performance venue).


Nov. 12, 1987

Although asbestos was discovered in several local elementary schools, tests performed by an independent company suggested no immediate health threat to students. The contaminated tiles were noted during a series of renovations in 1985, which resulted in some mitigation. The cost to remove and replace the remaining tiles was estimated between $20,000 and $50,000. “An asbestos cleanup is closer to a nuclear cleanup than a regular construction project,” The Journal observed.

In other news… A story on John Holden’s poetry included his piece “The Three Hawks” which ends: “Can one with dignity withdraw / while two go off together?”


Nov. 13, 1997

Residents of the upper Frying Pan appeared before the school board to protest the decision to cut 10 miles off the end of that school bus route. Around 10 students lived above the new terminus at the base of Ruedi Reservoir, and were reportedly having trouble adjusting. Board President Bruce Wampler, however, pointed out that the district wasn’t required to provide transportation services at all, much less to every corner of the district. Nevertheless, Superintendent Fred Wall agreed to meet and discuss the issue.

In other news… A Hungarian tourist had only minor injuries after being pinned under a boulder while hiking near Redstone.


Nov. 15, 2007

More than half of the eighth-grade class at Carbondale Middle School were accepting the challenge of National Novel Writing Month. “I thought I was going to get only 10 percent of the students, but these guys rose to the challenge,” said Teacher Adam Carballeira. While NaNoWriMo usually prescribes a 50,000 word goal, the students set theirs based on past writing, with an average of around 18,500 words. Carballeira and Principal Cliff Colia, meanwhile, were both planning to write the full amount.

In other news… The Carbondale Board of Trustees reopened comment on the rezoning of the old Carbondale Elementary School building (now the Third Street Center).