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Smith: To honor a diver — and the danger

Conditions were ideal for the two dozen or so divers who went into the sea off northern Sonoma on Saturday to form a circle of tribute to Craig Willes, the good guy from Timber Cove who died last month in Fisk Mill Cove.

His wife, Linda, and other family members watched from the shore as fellow sport divers placed a bouquet on the water. Among the divers were those who'd never even met Willes when they put themselves in danger Oct. 24 to find and recover his body.

Following Saturday morning's memorial dive, everyone moved to Fort Ross School for a celebration of Willes' life.

It is wrenching to all that just over the weekend, two more abalone divers perished on the breathtaking, perilous coastline above Jenner.

The risks can't keep us from pursuing our passions. But we must use great care, certainly for the sake of those who want us to return home.

OUR PAUL STAROBA earns a mention in The New York Time's rousing review of the new musical comedy, “A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder.”

At 30, Staroba is one of Broadway's youngest music directors ever. When “A Gentleman's Guide” opened at Walter Kerr Theatre, the Monty alum was in the pit, directing and playing piano.

His folks from Santa Rosa, David and Marsha Lightfoot, and sister Laura Lightfoot were at front row center, and they were dressed — just like the musical's main character, Monty Navarro — to kill.

RECOGNIZING RENEE: Some Hollywood stargazers assert that a certain actress may have done something to alter her appearance.

But Saturday, an antiques dealer at The Whistlestop in Santa Rosa easily identified the “Bridget Jones's Diary” star as she eyed collectibles.

If the shopper was a celebrity look-alike, she was a good one. The name on her credit card was Renee Zellweger.

IF MONDAY'S STORY on men's barbershop singing struck a chord, you might care also to know this.

Women who sing four-part harmony in the Song of Sonoma chorus will put on a mini-show at 8 tonight at Santa Rosa's New Vintage Church.

IT'S LUNCHTIME and Martha Kowalick and Ann Hancock of the Sonoma County-based Climate Protection Campaign, are hungry.

In Menlo Park on business, they choose Lutticken's Deli.

The fellow at the counter surprises Kowalick with an offer of a sandwich — if she'll sing to one of his regulars.

Hancock videos for Facebook as her friend breaks into “Skidamarink,” once a favorite of the Kowalick kids.

Mmm. Free tuna.

Chris Smith is at 521-5211 and chris.smith@pressdemocrat.com.

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