Q: If you were driving along Truxtun Avenue near downtown Bakersfield Sept. 24, it may have seemed as if Bakersfield Police Department headquarters was under siege. Cruisers with overhead lights flashing lined the street and a helicopter circled overhead
What was going on?
-- Californian staffers who saw it out their office windows
A: The activity was to honor Bakersfield police Lt. Scott Tunnicliffe, who had just completed his final shift after 25 years on the force.
Police Chief Greg Williamson said it's common for a retiring officer in a management position to get that kind of treatment.
During his time at the BPD, Tunnicliffe led the bomb squad and was in charge of numerous technical projects undertaken by the department, including the installation of surveillance cameras downtown.
"He is a really incredible guy," Williamson said.
People who saw the ceremony estimated there were several dozen cruisers along the street. Police spokeswoman Michaela Sims said she didn't have an estimate of how many cruisers were there, but said the officers who attended either came in before their shift started or were already off duty.
The ceremony lasted from 9:20 p.m. to 9:30 p.m., she said.
Sheriff Donny Youngblood said his department's helicopter flew over the BPD for several minutes during the ceremony to honor Tunnicliffe. The BPD requested the helicopter be there if possible, and since the helicopter was already on its normal patrol and had finished with a call in the area minutes earlier, they went ahead with it.
Youngblood said there was no additional cost to taxpayers because the helicopter wasn't activated specifically for the event, it just flew over during its regular patrol. Tunnicliffe had a special affinity for helicopters.
"I think it's important in (Tunnicliffe's) case that we had the opportunity to do a fly by and honor him, and I'd do it again tomorrow," Youngblood said.
Q: For years, La Bonita has been my family's favorite brand of tortillas. But in the last few months, I have not been able to find them at Vons or Costco.
Are they still being sold, or is the company no longer in business? If they are out of business, which may be the case, what other local companies sell tortillas? The national brands are just not the same.
-- Dan Cronquist
A: Denise Ornelas of La Bonita, answered:
Yes, La Bonita is still in business. We have recently added another label to the family, La Preciosa!
La Bonita is the only locally owned Tortilleria, owned and operated by Albert Ornelas and his awesome wife, me.
We are currently not in the major grocery stores because of repackaging. We will soon be back in stores but meanwhile, you are able to purchase tortillas directly from the factory at 1813 E. California Ave.
We are still servicing all your favorite local restaurants, but be sure to ask your server if they are serving La Bonita and if the answer is no, give them some good advice, such as BUY LOCAL and support our community! Thank you for your support! :)
Ask TBC appears on Mondays. Submit questions to firstname.lastname@example.org or to The Bakersfield Californian, c/o Christine Bedell, P.O. Bin 440, Bakersfield, CA 93302.