Well today was one that started WAY to early for me, (1:30am to be exact) But, it was well worth it. Because today was the 104th anniversary of The Great SanFrancisco Earthquake and Fire. My father and I were off to The City by 3:30am to prep the fire hydrante at 20th and Church Sts. (more on that later) and down to Lotta's Fountian at 3rd and Market Street before 4:30am for the commoration at exactly 5:13am. There was quite a turn out of people this morning, most likly due to the fact it was a Sunday. But never the less, it was nice to see so many people there to remember.
And we were joind by one living memory, William "Bill" Del Monte, at 104 1/2 was brought to the sence by police escort and treated with all the respect and reverance one would exspect, given he's one of the few remaining survivors of the great castrophy.
Once the cermony finished there, we all headed to 20th and Church to paint the fire hydrant gold. For those of you who don't know this story. This fire plug was the only one in the intire city that never stopped working and helped to save a substaincual part of the Mission District in April of 1906. Bill gave it a go first followed by the Fire Cheif and members of the SFFD brass. It was then openned to everyone. Many with personal stories or family history from the period regailed the very large crowd of on-lookers as they deticated their turn to famliy members now long gone.
We finished the morning as tradition dictates, with a breakfast at Lefty O'Doul's on Geary Street off of Union Square. And as the the rest of the City seamed to just be waking up, my father and I finished the morning back at 20th and Church cleaning up alittle and talking with passers by about a day that will live forever in the hearts and minds of the people, of the City by the Bay.