Off Beat: Now hear this about that old military megaphone

By Tom Vogt October 14, 2013 6 a.m.

Turns out that the brass section in the U.S. Army's musical arsenal had its own heavy artillery.

Art at Clark College: Poplar, precision, persistence

By Tom Vogt October 9, 2013 6 a.m.

Something about Mike Rathbun's work puts you in a quantitative frame of mind.

Hearthwood will have leaf collection box

By Tom Vogt October 9, 2013 6 a.m.

When it comes to leaves, "We have more than our share," Laura Albright said. Albright is chairwoman of the Hearthwood Neighborhood Association, and her judgment is supported by data from the city of Vancouver.

Off Beat: They came to Vancouver, where their stories came together

By Tom Vogt October 7, 2013 6 a.m.

For one man, the path started with a candy bar.

Yes, that's Sam Elliott's voice in Clark spots

By Tom Vogt October 7, 2013 6 a.m.

After speaking on behalf of pickup trucks, beer and Smokey Bear, actor and Clark alumnus Sam Elliott is lending his distinctive voice to Clark College.

Vets have patchwork of aid in shutdown

By Tom Vogt October 4, 2013 5:46 p.m.

The local veterans' assistance office is open.

Preservation project proceeds at Vancouver Barracks

By Tom Vogt October 4, 2013 10 a.m.

Preservation work is continuing on a century-old building overlooking the Parade Ground at Fort Vancouver, even though the National Park Service is on hiatus during the government shutdown.

Air museum programs now run at two sites

By Tom Vogt September 29, 2013 7:56 p.m.

The future of Vancouver's embattled aviation museum is still up in the air, with mediation talks now underway. But educators are glad that some school-focused programs made an emergency landing at the adjacent airport.

Old Apple Tree, new fence

By Tom Vogt September 26, 2013 7:46 p.m.

A permanent fence is going up around the Old Apple Tree, to help preserve the living legacy of Vancouver's Hudson's Bay era.

Fort finds good fit for clothing at Summer's End Promenade (with video)

By Tom Vogt September 26, 2013 9:49 a.m.

Nineteenth-century corsets weren't as uncomfortable as you might think, Eileen Trestain said — not if they were fitted properly.

Longtime Lake Shore farmer Vinton Erickson dies at 84

By Tom Vogt September 24, 2013 5:47 p.m.

Longtime farmer Vinton Erickson, whose family kept acreage and orchards in Lake Shore blooming for more than a century, died Sunday.

Vancouver woman who survived Holocaust dies

By Tom Vogt September 23, 2013 7:26 p.m.

Diana Golden probably owed her life to a slave-labor assignment. It got her out of Auschwitz. The longtime Vancouver resident, who died Sunday, recalled that pivotal chapter in her life in a 2006 Columbian story.

Veterans put personal mark on dedication of VFW plaza

By Tom Vogt September 20, 2013 11:07 p.m.

Like many veterans, Gary Barker was glad for a chance to add his name to a list of local service personnel who fought overseas.

Vancouver, Veterans of Foreign Wars join to honor military, keep city clean

By Tom Vogt September 18, 2013 8:29 p.m.

A black slab of granite that was hoisted into place Wednesday morning provided a finishing touch for a downtown street corner.

Clark County Fair manager takes on added duty

By Tom Vogt September 17, 2013 5:59 a.m.

John Morrison, who recently oversaw a successful 2013 county fair, also is taking over the job of executive director of the Clark County Event Center at the Fairgrounds.

VFW plaza dedication set for Friday

By Tom Vogt September 16, 2013 6 a.m.

A tribute to America's war veterans will be dedicated at 11 a.m. Friday southeast of Vancouver City Hall.

Off Beat: Habitat work reveals full range of living arrangements

By Tom Vogt September 16, 2013 6 a.m.

Josh Townsley's job includes a lot of happy homecomings.

Battle Ground soldier home on leave surprises kid sister at school

By Tom Vogt September 11, 2013 9:58 p.m.

BATTLE GROUND — For a soldier with an "Old Ironsides" patch on his shoulder, Jared Euan was a pretty soft touch Wednesday morning when his little sister jumped into his arms and gave him a big hug.

WSUV fall enrollment 3,062; freshman class biggest ever

By Tom Vogt September 11, 2013 7:32 p.m.

Fall enrollment at Washington State University Vancouver was reported at 3,062 Wednesday, including a freshman milestone for the Salmon Creek campus.

Local events aim to keep memories of 9/11 alive

By Tom Vogt September 10, 2013 8:23 p.m.

HOCKINSON — Firefighters around Clark County are taking the opportunity today to remind people of the significance of Sept. 11, 2001.

Habitat for Humanity home comes together

By Tom Vogt September 10, 2013 6 a.m.

An innovative high school course, combining math and construction, demonstrated an important principle.

Peddling with the sharks

By Tom Vogt September 7, 2013 10 a.m.

CAMAS -- Daniel Wood and David Martschinske aren't re-inventing the wheel. They're just updating it with gyroscopic technology, a computerized stabilizing system and an electric motor.

Clark County residents recall their impassioned work at Kaiser Shipyard during WWII

By Tom Vogt September 2, 2013 6 a.m.

About 70,000 people were in the crowd on April 5, 1943, when Eleanor Roosevelt christened the first aircraft carrier built in Vancouver.

Hot rod road trip aims to help

By Tom Vogt August 28, 2013 6 a.m.

There's lots to catch the eye when Lenny Cestaro and Aaron Showalter roll up in the hot rod.

Off Beat: Engineer's legacy bridged Army, confluence art

By Tom Vogt August 26, 2013 6 a.m.

As a career Army officer and engineer, Bob Friedenwald served in Vietnam and worked in Iraq.

Trail of Confluence art continues to fill in

By Tom Vogt August 24, 2013 8:13 p.m.

Vancouver's Land Bridge is one segment in a series of landscape-art installations that eventually will stretch from the mouth of the Columbia River to the eastern edge of the state near Clarkston.

Vancouver Land Bridge to mark 5th anniversary

By Tom Vogt August 22, 2013 8:57 p.m.

For thousands of years, people followed that path north from the Columbia River.

Sheriff's office unit seeks mom suspected of fleeing with daughter, 3

By Tom Vogt August 21, 2013 8:41 p.m.

The child recovery unit of the Clark County Sheriff's Office wants help in locating a woman and her daughter. Sylvia Wilda, 39, is believed to have fled Clark County with her 3-year-old daughter, Kasia Hall.

Truck tips at Gee Creek Rest Area in Ridgefield

By Tom Vogt August 21, 2013 12:18 p.m.

Firefighters, transportation workers clean spilled oil

Flagpole fixed, fit for Old Glory

By Tom Vogt August 20, 2013 8:21 p.m.

CAMAS — Three things to know about Rich Ullsmith:

Fire on hay truck ties up Highway 14 traffic (with video)

By Emily Gillespie and Tom Vogt August 20, 2013 9:18 p.m.

Flames from a hay truck that caught fire spread to a field and shut down state Highway 14 in both directions in Washougal, according to Washington State Patrol.

Government Island fire brought under control (with video)

By Emily Gillespie and Tom Vogt August 19, 2013 8:13 p.m.

The right northbound lane of Interstate 205 on the Glenn Jackson Bridge remains closed this afternoon as firefighters respond to a large grass fire on Government Island.

Off Beat: Codes helped loved ones track sailors during WWII

By Tom Vogt August 19, 2013 6 a.m.

In times of war, codes are a way to pass along sensitive information.

Working on the war effort at Vancouver's Kaiser Shipyard

By Tom Vogt August 19, 2013 6 a.m.

Peggy Sater was just 16 when she went to work at Vancouver's Kaiser Shipyard. Harry Hendricks beat her by two years; he was 14.

Local veterans recall service aboard ships built at Kaiser in Vancouver

By Tom Vogt August 18, 2013 6 a.m.

Seventy years ago, workers at Vancouver's Kaiser Shipyard watched the USS Gambier Bay take form.

Broken water line damages part of Parsley community center

By Tom Vogt August 15, 2013 4:51 p.m.

A broken water line at the Vancouver Public Schools' community center caused extensive flooding, forcing the Boys and Girls Clubs to shift some of its programs.

Local veterans get a helping hand

By Tom Vogt August 14, 2013 8:17 p.m.

The aroma of roast pig can get your mouth to watering.

Off Beat: Ex-sports editor pens controversial Cobb tomes

By Tom Vogt August 12, 2013 6 a.m.

Sports editors don't come along very often at The Columbian.

Stand-Down connects needy veterans with services

By Tom Vogt August 11, 2013 6 a.m.

Veterans in need will be able to find immediate assistance and access some long-term services Wednesday in the annual "stand-down."

Homebuilding homework: Students help out Habitat for Humanity

By Tom Vogt August 9, 2013 6:53 p.m.

The sherbert-green building at Mountain View High School represents a twist on student homework. The work these students did will become a family's home.

Grant to provide job training for local veterans

By Tom Vogt August 8, 2013 6 a.m.

A Vancouver-based nonprofit has been awarded a $110,000 grant to provide job training for homeless female veterans and veterans with families.

Bumblebee research in full bloom at Fort Vancouver

By Tom Vogt August 3, 2013 6 a.m.

The bumblebees showed a lot more life than most of the items that get identified and catalogued by researchers at Fort Vancouver.

Spectacular fire destroys shops near La Center

By Craig Brown and Tom Vogt July 26, 2013 5:52 p.m.

A fire that produced large flames and a tall column of black smoke destroyed shop buildings east of La Center just before noon today.

By land and by water: Amphibious vehicle lands in Vancouver

By Tom Vogt July 24, 2013 7:31 p.m.

John Engelke is showing his World War II amphibious craft at this week's military vehicle convention in Portland, but the DUKW isn't just a display. It was his ride down the Columbia River.

Tribal members stop at Fort Vancouver during canoe journey (with video)

By Tom Vogt July 22, 2013 10:27 p.m.

The directions are pretty simple: Paddle west until you run out of land, then turn right. The paddling part is what makes it a challenge.

Historical museum exhibit showcases key role unions played in shaping county

By Gordon Oliver and Tom Vogt July 21, 2013 6 a.m.

It's not often that buildings are named after labor leaders. But Vancouver's tallest building, and one of its most prominent, is named after 1960s labor leader Bill Smith.

Homeless veterans grant to aid up to 30 area families

By Tom Vogt July 19, 2013 6 a.m.

A new federal grant to serve homeless veterans will benefit 25 to 30 Vancouver-area families.

Local veterans to return to Korea as ambassadors

By Tom Vogt July 19, 2013 6 a.m.

The last time Carl Hissman received an all-expenses-paid trip to Korea, he wound up exchanging rifle fire with a Chinese soldier until they both ran out of ammunition.

Archaeology students dig into Fort Vancouver's past

By Tom Vogt July 18, 2013 6 a.m.

When Desiree Lukens stepped into the shallow trench, she didn't just go down a couple of feet; she stepped back a couple of centuries.

Effort aids enrichment programs for youth

By Tom Vogt July 9, 2013 4:26 p.m.

A locally led effort that funds student enrichment opportunities around the country through credit card purchases is looking to boost its impact in the Vancouver area.