To answer the questions of Bay Area transplant Penny DeBono (Saturday’s “What’s the difference”), the difference between a Bay Area kid and a Tracy kid is the birth certificate. A Tracy kid was born at Sutter Tracy Hospital or San Joaquin General Hospital. A Tracy kid has attended Tracy schools for most of his or her life. Bay Area kids were born in a hospital in the Bay Area and have, at some point, attended Bay Area schools. Does this make the kids any different I don’t think so. Kids are kids.
How long does it take to stop being an outsider You stop being an outsider when you stop feeling like one. A true Tracyite doesn’t have to ask this question. They look in their heart and know they are from Tracy, and they remember what this community was like when they were younger. They know Tracy’s history and are proud to tell stories about how Tracy used to be. I am a Tracyite and so is my family. Both sets of my grandparents moved to Tracy when they were young. My parents and in-laws attended Tracy High School, as did my husband, our siblings, our children and myself.
Tracy was a close-knit community. However, it isn’t very close anymore. This isn’t because many people have moved here from the Bay Area. It is because many people work in the Bay Area. These people are away from home for many hours each day and don’t have the time it takes to nurture a close-knit community.
There have been gangs in Tracy for years. Ask anyone who attended Senior Elementary School in the 1970s if there were gangs then. Of course, there were not as many then as today, but Tracy was much smaller then.
As long as kids from the Bay Area have trouble-free lives, they will be known as “good kids” from Tracy.
Coleen Toon, Tracy