California Conservation Corps, Sequoia Center

Life in the CCC Sequoia Center in Porterville

I remember being in the CCC Sequoia Center in Porterville. That center was located in Porterville Developmental Center until the state of Calfornia closed it down in 2004.

I remember one resident by the name of Herman. He is tamed compared with the rest of the mental patient. The only reason why he stuck into the mental hospital is because he was only eight year old when he have an accident that affect his brain. What happen was that he was playing around with his basketball when for some reason the ball got away from him and landed in the street, Herman follow the ball toward the street and when he got to the ball, some car came out of nowhere and hit Herman. That accident must have done some damage with his brain because they sent him into the mental hospital for the remainer of his life. I remember that some corpsmember ask him how old is he and Herman rely that he is eight and according to David Griffith, all the immature corpse members would tease him about it. In 1990, some guy by the name of Doug have told someone on how Herman got into be a mental patient in the first place.
When I first got there in late August of 1988, Sequoia Center have no problem with Corpsmember socializing with the resident until February of 1989 when one of the resident have accused one of the corpsmember by the name of Mark Hash of raping her. Lucky for him that the mental hospital have did some medical test on her and discover that she was not raped all all and she make it up so that she could get attention by her boyfriend. Of course, the rest of the corpsmember got bitch at by Juan Salazar at the meeting that the corpsmember have to attend on every Monday Night. There is one Corpsmember by the name of Simon Fourstar, who used to hang out on the water tower and hearing the residents screaming there brains out.

I remember the good and the bad about Sequoia Center, the good part is that even though I cannot get any job opportunies in that place because of my foot problem, at least they have not used that as an excuse to kicked me out. That was minor compared with all the drug and drinking problem that the corpmembers have. I remember one guy got fired from his job because he was caught bringing beer on center ground and everyone got chew out the next day because of it. One Christmas in 1988, I have to go to C2 office all because someone rat one of my roommate from Bakersfield crew was using drug on the job in which I reply that I have not seen them using it when they are cleaning up the dorm.

Great memories in that place. It is too bad that I cannot stay working in that place forever since the maximum time for the corpsmember to be working for the California Conservation Corps is two years and I left there after working two years in the CCC.


Lee B.

I forgot his last name, but I do remember that he is Lee. He used to be working in the kitchen as a cook specialist until he was fired in 1989.

Comments 6 comments

robert hardy 4 years ago

i was in the ccc in 1987.i liked it there it is were i met my x wife i had 3 daughters with her.i was there for like a year mabe a bit longer.yes there was alot of drinking and drugs.also remember the the mental people that were there we had to make sure we didnt through our cig buts on the ground cause they would eat them.also remeber taking a trip to the Sequoia National Park we checked out crystal caves.we also did alot of trail cutting.we also walked river beds and stacked up drift wood for miles and miles and miles and then burned it like a few mounths down the road.i was in the best shape i have ever been in there and look back at it as something iam glad i did.had alot of adventure and lot of fun and i miss alot of friends form there.

Alonzo I Richardson 4 years ago

I joined the Conservation Corps in 1993, right after High School. This was my first job. I remember corp members like Andy Hernandez, C1 Richard Miller his wife Silvia Navarro Miller, Ivan Ruiz, Janet Telo,her husband John tello, Rosa, C1 Bobby Echols, Richard Prado RIP,

Stephanie 4 years ago

I was in the Ukaih center in 1990. My red hat was Gary Burika and in charge was a man named Dale Greenley. I was raped and beaten by one corp memeber and five of his friends. Both of these men knew it went on and when my mom scraped me out of driveway and took me to the police they both said the person didnt exist. I have his picture and nice other corp members vouching he was there. They packed my things and told my mom if I we didnt leave we would be arrested for trespassing. I had a ring of bruises on my neck from being strangled, blood coming from every where. I was 18. I hope those two have rotted with the reality of their crime. I pity them and hope the CCC has improved who they let in and their safety because at its core it is a wonderful program. I would have loved to have had a better experience. I hope all future members a better experience.

Alejandro Durazo 4 years ago

I was at Sequoia center... and went back country. Alonzo.. I know you, man.We were in comet with Marcello, Richard Robi and Phil. Remember the five of us in comet chilling under that tree with Phil and his guitar? Then me and Ben went Back Country?!! those were some great times. I hope you are well. I live in Seattle Life is good.

Angela carmona 2 years ago

I was joined in the ccc'sin 1996 I had good experience there except when at that time one of the corps member kill him self but other than that I really loved it I wish i could see all my friends again I had. A verry special ones that I wish that could be. In contact with Phillip morales he was always very Nice time me where ever ur at I really miss my yellow hat was Justine, mel Silva christine some good times

angela carmona 2 years ago

So I was saying I had a verry good friend that to this day I still miss from the ccc's he was in porterville I don't know u might be merried i don't know but if u read this I leave my name wich is angela carmona at that time when we were working together california conservtion corps it was Maria i hope u remember me if u ever read this Phillip Morales I miss u so much my number is 559704 6678 I live in Fresno California hope to talk to u one day u were somebody really important in my life

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    Corpsmember Name 
    Job Title 
    Where are they now 
    Eric Price 
    Got maried to his girlfriend and he became a Bakersfield Cops 
    Annisa Aguilar
    Got Married and own her herbal consultation business in Sonoma/Napa, California 
    John Knoczyk  
    Changed his name to Simon Fourstar, Been married for 12 years have a son that is 11 and still livng in near Chatsworth, CA.
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