Being Thankful | Thanksgiving Messages from our Leadership, Family, Neighbors, Friends

We asked some in the community to give their thanks on Thanksgiving. Why not take a moment and ask yourself: What am I thankful for?

Thanksgiving in South Pasadena | A time to reflect on a year of hope, success, and growth

A Thanksgiving note from News Editor Bill Glazier

My 28-year-old son, Michael, taught me a very valuable lesson – be thankful for what you have, not what you don’t have.

And, as I grow older, those words grow stronger.

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I’m thankful for the relationship I have with my son, a new one I’m developing with a wonderful lady in my life, the opportunity to see fascinating new places as I travel more, and the lasting friendships I’ve made in the City of South Pasadena.

In this fast-paced digital world, I’m thankful to be a part of the, delivering news and entertainment online and through social media to thousands of readers each day.

More than anything, however, I’m thankful for our Armed Services, the men and women who work tirelessly to provide us freedom, along with our firefighters, who battled blazes and risked their lives for others throughout the state in recent weeks.

Sometimes I think I don’t have as much as others, but then I think, why would I want anything more?

I’m thankful for the words of Tom Bodett, that I live by:  

“They say a person needs just three things to be truly happy in this world: someone to love, something to do, and something to hope for.”

Fortunately, I’ve got all three in abundance. Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

We asked, “What are you Thankful for?” And this is what some in the community had to say:

Thanks for the opportunity to ‘talk turkey’ so that I can say that every day I’m extremely grateful and honored to be able to work for the South Pasadena Public Library.  The unique community we serve is so actively immersed in learning, the arts, and culture, it’s great that the library can be right in the midst of it all. Also, I’m especially thankful that I can spend the holiday with my family. Everything else is just gravy.

~Steve Fjeldsted, Director of South Pasadena Library


This Thanksgiving provides us with an opportunity to reflect on the past year – our challenges, our successes, and what we’ve been able to accomplish.  It is also a reminder of the importance of family and friends, and a chance to say thank you to those who matter most to us. Take time out of your busy schedule to help those who are less fortunate. I thank God for being blessed beyond my fondest dream.  I wish all of you and your families a safe and special Thanksgiving.

~South Pasadena City Councilmember Bob Joe


I give thanks – For the laughter of the children, For my own life breath, For the abundance of food on the table, For the ones who prepared a sumptuous feast, For the roof over our heads, The clothes on our backs, For our health, And our wealth of blessings, For this opportunity to celebrate with family and friends, For the freedom to say these words Without fear, In any language, In any faith, In this great country, Whose landscape is as vast and beautiful as her inhabitants.

I give thanks for all of this and for this wonderful place that I call home.

(Inspired by Rabbi Naomi Levy)

~Photographer, Community Volunteer Cyndi Bemel


Grateful for our firefighters in South Pasadena and all over the country who are fighting our California fires and saving lives every day.

~Alisa Diez, Arts & Culture |


So many things move through my head as I sit here contemplating what I am thankful for. The two that stand out the most are the typical responses but the two things that so strongly makes up a person’s life. I am eternally grateful for my family. Our ability to support and love each other at all times whether they are good or bad. Knowing that we are there for each other makes it all worth it! The second thing I am grateful for is my work. I am lucky enough to have the opportunity to work with so many dynamic people, working towards one cause – our kids. As I sit around the table on Thanksgiving with my family, we will talk about other things we are grateful for with the knowledge that South Pasadena will always be at the core of our gratitude.

~Stacey Petersen, Executive Director of SPEF


I’m thankful that I get to spend Thanksgiving with my family, including Kathy, my children and their spouses, and my four beautiful grandchildren aged 3 to 21.  I’m fortunate that they all live nearby and I get to spend time with all of them.  I’m also thankful that I have a dog, Kelly, who ignores my faults and a cat that tolerates my presence in her home.

Dan Watson, Former SPPD Police Chief, Rotary Club Past President


We pause at this time to consider how much we have to be grateful for within our school district. Our students benefit from the way our community regularity pulls together in a shared commitment to our public school system. Here in South Pasadena, we have students who are thriving in academics, athletics, and extracurricular endeavors and parents who unconditionally love and support their children. We have a faculty, staff and administrators who work tirelessly to become better educators to uplift our students, keep our buildings safe and our systems running smoothly.

SPUSD Superintendent Geoff Yantz


I am very thankful for being married to my wonderful wife, Peggy O’Leary. And  I am grateful for good health and for the privilege to live and work in our wonderful community of South Pasadena where we celebrate so many friendships.

John Vandercook, Local Business Owner, Known as “Mr. South Pasadena”


I am thankful for being alive and having had so many satisfying and beautiful moments this past year with family and friends, in my community and in my profession.

Jonathan Primuth, Board of Education President


With the holidays approaching and thinking about the past year, I am thankful for my families…immediate, extended, city, community, neighborhood, preservation, no 710.

Joanne Nuckols, Longtime 710 Freeway Fighter & South Pasadena Leader


I am thankful for our community, which has a diverse, inclusive group of citizens willing to do and go a step further than most. A city that has real heart and shows it at every turn. People, in our fair burg, that routinely help each other and ask for nothing in return. Students and parents alike who show empathy and understanding to others who are different or less fortunate belonging to our phenomenal school system.

And finally I would be remiss if I didn’t mention the the wonderful smell of the fresh cut grass and the cool breeze emanating through the Arroyo on a early morning walk. Oh, also the Catfish with Ponzu sauce at Shiro.

Gary Goodrich, columnist for The South Pasadenan, & basketball guru extraordinaire


Perspective.  I am thankful to be in the eye of the worst of the storms for the moment.  Unfairly, undeserving, fourtunate, and momentum in a positive direction.  Friends, family, staff: so many people with the vision and preservierince to make good things happen are around us right now. This is been a tragic year, a catastrophic year for so many of us- including my own family.  I’m thankful to be useful.  We are so fortunate to be amongst a strong community of intelligent, purposeful, talented, humble, wise, and prosperous people.

Steven Lawrence, publisher of The South Pasadenan |, President of the South Pasadena Preservation Foundation.