They say only the good die young. I don't know how true that is, but I know the people who gathered at the west end of Victory Blvd. last Saturday morning for the dedication of Hunter Allen Trail at Ahmanson Ranch in the far west part of the San Fernando Valley would rather have seen Good Hunter Allen live into his thirties and beyond.
The ceremony was officiated by a Chumash Indian medicine man, who, in full-native prayer garb, dedicated the trail to Hunter's family, the American People, Native Americans, and their ancestors, who are buried on lands across the continent.
Hunter died tragically a year ago when the pain of his personal life became too much for him to bear.
However, the way Hunter lived his public life earned him the name Baby Dragon. Though somewhat diminutive in physical stature, he was a force to be wreckened (as fomer WaMu CEO Kelly Killinger learned. Killinger lost his battle with Hunter, a young West Hollyood activist, determined to save a large swath of hilly California meadowland, which the bank owned and developers salivated over. With no money and a gut full of passion, Hunter used cunning, irony, and friends to succeed in making the land part of the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy--forever protecting it from the voracious appetites of California's sprawl-driven developers. Thanks to his efforts and the efforts of others, banks and developers are now looking at urban redevelopment as the wave of the future for building in Southern California.