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San Pedro Reflects as the Taste Goes on Hiatus p. 2 Did the White House Orchestrate the Occupy Crack Down? p. 6 Slack Key Guitarist Kimo West Brings Hawaiian Music Plays with Love to the Harbor p. 11 The Local Publication You Actually Read By Terelle Jerricks, Managing Editor T been active here in San Pedro recently in places like Field of Dreams, Harbor Boulevard, 25th and Western, and before Paseo del Mar fell, there were illegal drag strip races,” Galaz said. Increase the peace through the wheels. This is their way of saving wayward youth. “Our main focus is to help the youth; give them an out, keep them away from drugs and gangbanging and the whole jail lifestyle,” Galaz explained. “If we could save one kid’s life from killing somebody in an illegal street race and getting caught up in the system ... if we can take that at-risk youth and show them how to physically turn a wrench and come up with formulas on how to make things work and to work out problems mentally and physically with their hands … [That] is the main focus of our organization.” Galaz credits Big Willie next to his stepfather for saving his life. Though raised in a stable middle class home he got caught up in gangs and the criminal justice system before he got involved in the Terminal Island drag strip. When it closed, he lost his way again for a couple of years before Big Willie took him under his wing and got him involved in working on cars and racing again. Above is a race taken at the old Brotherhood Raceway Track in Terminal Island in the 1990s. One of the organizers of Project Street Legal, Donald Galaz (center) with just a handful of young people that hang out at his garage, learning the basics of car maintenance and repairs. Photo: Terelle Jerricks. He’s taken his case to the Los Angeles County. He’s had conversations with both the previous and current captains of the Los Angeles Police Department, Harbor Division. He has also gone to each of the neighborhood councils in San Pedro with his petition. With the numerous letters of support at his disposal, there are many receptive ears to his message. Big Willie and Street Racing July 27 - August 9, 2012 The world of street racing literally lost a giant when Big Willie Andrew Robinson III died this past May. Big Willie, who stood at 6-foot-6-inches tall and weighed 300-plus pounds, was once Mr. Olympia. He competed against the likes of Arnold Schwarzenegger as bodybuilder in his heyday and was also the founding president of the National and International Brotherhood of StreetRacers. For many years, he operated a drag strip on Terminal Island and elsewhere. Whether because of his size, his status as a Green Beret Vietnam War veteran, his knowledge of cars and engines, or his natural predisposition towards being a peacemaker, Big Willie was widely respected and touched many lives. Big Willie’s long illnesses and ultimately his death caused the Brotherhood to undergo a period of reorganization. But he did leave behind some proteges to carry on his principles and legacy, even if it wasn’t through the Brotherhood itself. San Pedro native Donald Galaz was one of them. For the past 11 months, Donald Galaz has been on a mission to open a drag strip to satisfy the south end of the Harbor Freeway’s appetite for hot rods and speed. Galaz’s movement came to be called Project Street Legal. “We started in the Harbor Area because street racing has Galaz, 38, wasn’t even a gleam in his mother’s eye when Big Willie began building race tracks. He got to know Big Willie through his father and uncle back in the heyday of the Terminal Island race track in Street Legal/ to p.15

RLn 07-26-12 Edition

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