Low Visibility

November 27, 1947
Los Angeles

Driving in heavy fog last night, Chief Petty Officer Lavern J. Ringle, USN, veered off the road at Crenshaw and Manhattan Beach Boulevards and struck a eucalyptus tree. The collision fatally injured Ringle’s 15-month-old daughter Cecelia Ann and left her mother Mae Amy in serious condition. Also slightly injured were Roger Ringle, 6, and his friend Ronald Taber, 1o. The Ringles reside at 920 Silva Street, Long Beach.

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Kim Cooper

Kim Cooper is the creator of 1947project, the crime-a-day time travel blog that spawned Esotouric’s popular crime bus tours, including The Real Black Dahlia. She is the author of The Kept Girl, the acclaimed historical mystery starring the young Raymond Chandler and the real-life Philip Marlowe, and of The Raymond Chandler Map of Los Angeles. With husband Richard Schave, Kim curates the Salons and forensic science seminars of LAVA- The Los Angeles Visionaries Association. When the third generation Angeleno isn’t combing old newspapers for forgotten scandals, she is a passionate advocate for historic preservation of signage, vernacular architecture and writer’s homes. Kim was for many years the editrix of Scram, a journal of unpopular culture. Her books include Fall in Love For Life, Bubblegum Music is the Naked Truth, Lost in the Grooves and an oral history of Neutral Milk Hotel.

One thought on “Low Visibility”

  1. Trio of Pinochle Players
    Arrested for Game in Park

    Striking shortly after dawn, vice squad police yesterday swooped down on Hollenbeck Park and arrested three men in what was indicated as the start of a drive to break up a pinochle syndicate.

    Taken into custody on suspicion of gambling were Noah J. Simon 88, of 420 E. St. Louis St.; Abraham Levin, 76, of 1089 N. Loma St., and Herman Middleman, 65, of 3234 Lanfranco St.

    The trio were playing cards on the park lawn, where Officers C.M. Lanier and D.G. Richards confiscated 20 cents in cash and a meld. The suspects went quietly to Lincoln Heights Sunrise Court.

    Simon, Levin and Middleman pleaded guilty before Municipal Judge Louis W. Kaufman.

    In pleading guilty, Simon introduced his two friends, terming Middleman, 65, “the baby.â€Â

    “I don’t think I did anything. You know, I’m 88 years old, judge. I’ve never been in any trouble,â€Â Simon said.

    “It’s too bad the police had to make this arrest,â€Â Judge Kaufman replied. “I’m not going to penalize you for this. It is ridiculous to arrest people who have clean records for this many years over such a trifle as 20 cents. My sentence—$10 fine or two days in jail, suspended—is indicative of how the court feels in this matter,â€Â he concluded.

    + + +

    A 91-year-old former actor named Noah Simon tried to kill himself three years later by cutting his wrists and temple with a razor, saying that “I am lonely and even my children have forgotten me.â€Â It’s unclear whether this is the pinochle player in question. The fates of Middleman and Levin aren’t recorded. And while The Times records the colorful exploits of a Detective Lanier going back to the 1920s, it isn’t clear if it is the same officer.

    It’s interesting to contrast this story, with a three-column photo and two-column headline, with this:

    Body Found in Ravine
    The body of Laura Thomas,
    34, Negro, of 162 W. Bellevue
    St., Pasadena, was found yes-
    terday in a ravine near Bruns-
    wick and Hanscomb Drives,
    South Pasadena. She had been
    shot in the head.

    Quote of the day: “None of the 10 men will be rehired until he is acquitted or has purged himself of contempt and declared under oath that he is not a Communist.â€Â
    Eric Johnston, president of the Motion Picture Association of American, on blacklisting the “Hollywood 10.â€Â


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