Video/News Report: Cone zone message gives Colfax Record, editor statewide exposure

By: Gus Thomson, Journal Staff Writer
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Colfax has a famous face in the form of Record Editor Gloria Beverage. Beverage and the weekly newspaper she helms in Colfax have been highlighted around the state for more than a month in a Caltrans public service announcement on cone zone safety. It’s being telecast on TV stations during the morning commute hours. The Record drew Caltrans attention after it was learned highway worker Matt White had appeared in a story on cone zone safety about 18 months before being struck and killed while on the job last December. Beverage spent a morning filming with a production crew last spring and the announcement started airing in early August. Quite a few friends, ex-fellow employees and relatives have called since then from the South State as well as the local area. In fact, Beverage said her 93-year-old mother, Mary Ortiz of North Hollywood, has called three times. “It’s all over the state,” Beverage said. “Everyone has been touched by the message. It’s an incredible piece.” One friend even teared up while watching, she said. Statewide attention is special but Beverage can also point to the time she appeared before a nationwide television audience. As a 7-year-old Beverage was a pint-sized guest on “Art Linkletter’s House Party” on the CBS-TV network. While Linkletter, author of “Kids Say the Darndest Things,” went for the laughs, Beverage has worked with Caltrans to produce a more serious message. “Caltrans workers face extreme dangers on the job, but they also witness many car collisions and injuries among drivers,” said Caltrans Assistant Deputy Director Tamie McGowen. “Caltrans cannot stress enough how important safe driving is in these areas, for both our workers, and the residents of California.” The Journal’s Gus Thomson can be reached at