Hey, Spike! reports on mother-daughter do-gooders
Special to the Daily
Like mother, like daughter, that’s Kathy Holmes and Gabriel “Gabe” Tamaska, both formerly of the Kingdom of Breckenridge.
They’re both into saving the environment.
Mom is down near Corpus Christi, Texas, helping sea turtles, while daughter was involved in raptor rescue and recently relocated to Glenwood Springs, where husband Ed Chusid landed a job in administration with Colorado Mountain College.
Gabe and Ed are graduates of the University of Michigan Ann Arbor – she has bachelor’s in wildlife biology and management, and Ed has BA in history and he worked as the assistant to the UMich events director, followed by earning a master’s in history from Eastern Michigan.
Soon, Gabe will be teaching in the children’s ski school at Sunlight. The couple will visit Kathy in Corpus Christi over the holidays.
“Gabe had always wanted to return to the mountains, after leaving Breckenridge, Blue River and Summit County for UMich,” mother Kathy says. “The scholarships she received those 13 years ago from the Summit Foundation, the Town of Breckenridge and UMich Alumni Association of Denver certainly helped defray some of the costs of that very expensive public university.”
Gabe graduated from Summit High in 1999, along with schoolmate Lindsay Mauch, who was her matron of honor five years ago in Steamboat Springs.
“As a mother, it makes my heart happy to see her return. The mountains are in her blood and I am sure Colorado will be the beneficiary of their education and talents,” mom adds.
Gabe recently finished an internship with Rocky Mountain Raptor Rescue in the Fort Collins area, performing injections on ailing birds, giving tours and released a screech owl. She also recently earned her parasailing wings while at a specialized training school in Georgia.
“Yes, I am a proud mama,” says Kathy. “Ah, Summit County babies know how to get the most out of life.”
Now, here’s mom’s story:
“I am retired and enjoying volunteer work with the Kemp’s ridley sea turtle project, where I have taken certification classes and I’m on the Padre Island National Seashore’s list of turtle-handlers (required to handle an endangered species) and have been certified by the Department of the Interior to drive ATVs on the beach, which I do during nesting season,” Kathy reports.
Some of these trips are wild and woolly because the Kemp’s ridley sea turtles are diurnal (daily) nesters and like blustery, high wave action days, she explains.
“It is so rewarding to have been lucky enough to find a nest with 108 eggs in it. We are hoping that no green sea turtles will be cold-stunned this winter, which happens when water temps in our bays and along the Gulf of Mexico drop to the mid-50s. I have completed that training as well and am ready to go when called for an emergency response.”
“You may have heard about ‘Flip,’ the cold-stunned Kemp’s ridley who turned up in the Netherlands. He was one of those hatchlings from our program, and yes, he is doing just fine. We are tracking him via satellite, which can be seen at seaturtle.org,” Kathy explains.
“We also help release the turtles,” notes Kathy. “I am on ‘Shoo, go away you pesky seagulls’ duty here. Releases are at 6:30 a.m., and are well-attended by the public.”
It was 42 years ago this month the Kemp’s ridley sea turtle was designated as endangered.
Spotted out and about “Winter Walk-ing” in Frisco were Campy Campton, Sara Kent, BJ McCarthy, Kouri Wolf, Don and Maggie Dew, Janet and Butch Elich, Steve and Laura Rossetter, Cathy Cunningham, Nick Pollard, Lisa Lawson, Jay and Brenda Herman, Kathy Lisherness, Brenda and Rob Hughey, Steve and Sandee Smith, Jim Deines and Linda Simon, Jeanne and Greg Brown, Matt and Nancy Wyatt, Linda Axelrod, Bobby Kato, Jodie Boyd, Emily Baumgartner, Sandy Schmaderer, Heather Jarkski, Patti and Eddie Bowers, Colleen Richmond, Todd and Tracy Powell, Phil and Janelle Kopp, Mark Zeigler, Janet Carter, Carol Rickauer, Alicia Dunn, Marsha and Bruce Youngdahl, Dorta and Jim McNaul, Laurie and Gary Cushner, Sandy Sheffield, Kathleen Kennedy and Jon Kirkpatrick and Pam Murano.
Miles F. Porter IV, nicknamed “Spike,” a Coloradan since 1949, is an Army veteran, former Climax miner, graduate of Adams State College and a local since 1982. An award-winning investigative reporter, he and wife Mary E. Staby owned newspapers here for 20 years.
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