2012 Parade Highlights
2012 Grand Marshal: Freedom Committee of Orange County
“Passing the Torch of Liberty on to Future Generations”
The members of the Freedom Committee of Orange County, which was founded in 1995 by WWII Pearl Harbor Survivor Jack Hammett, are veterans who bring with them a “Living History” of WWII and the Korean and Vietnam Wars. The Freedom Committee is a group composed of veterans who are willing to share stories about Pearl Harbor, Battle of the Bulge, D-Day, air battles in the war torn skies of the South pacific, over Fortress Europe, and even experiences of being Prisoners of War. All the theaters of war are remembered and shared…places like Pusan, Inchon, Chosin Reservoir, Da Nang and the Tet Offensive.
These veterans are available to speak to school children regarding these subjects at the request of educators who may wish to supplement their traditional curriculum with a “Living History” program. The Freedom Committee appeals to young and old alike, in that it tells a story in a dramatic and interesting way in the classroom and other venues. Learn more: http://fc-oc.org/
2012 Sports Grand Marshal: Kyla Ross – 2012 Olympic Gold Medalist – Gymnastics
Kyla Ross was a member of the dynamic 2012 Olympic Gymnastics Team where at the age of 15, she scored a Gold medal in the Team All-Around Competition.
She began her gymnastics career at the age of three when her mother put her in the sport because she was so active and energetic.
Kyla currently trains in Costa Mesa at Gym-Max Gymnastics under coaches Jenny Zhang and Howie Liang. She resides in Aliso Viejo with her father Jason, mother Kiana and siblings McKenna and Kayne and is a sophomore at Aliso Niguel High School.
We are proud of her accomplishments and Laguna Niguel is honored to have Kyla Ross featured in the Holiday Parade.
For more information about Kyla, go to kylaross.net.
2012 Sports Grand Marshal: McKayla Maroney – 2012 Olympic Gold Medalist – Gymnastics
McKayla Rose Maroney (born December 9, 1995) is an Olympic Gold and Silver Medalist, and a native to Laguna Niguel. She was a member of the gold medal-winning, "Fierce Five," US Women's Gymnastics team, from this past 2012 Summer Olympics held in London. McKayla is also the 2011 world vault champion and the 2012 Olympic vault silver medalist. By the age of two, McKayla had started her career in gymnastics at a local club called National Gymnastics Training Center. She then moved on to Gym-Max in Costa Mesa, and is currently training in Culver City, Ca at AOGC. She has recently completed a 40 city tour across the county, where she took a very active role in promotions. She has guest starred on shows such as David Letterman, The Colbert Report, Ellen, The Today Show, Good Morning America, and most recently on Dancing With The Stars, and the TV series, Hart of Dixie.
Here in Laguna Niguel, McKayla attended Laguna Niguel Montessori, Moulton Elementary, and Aliso Viejo Middle School. Due to her hectic schedule, she is home schooled. She was an Indian Princess for two years, she played in the cities soccer and softball league, and took ice skating and tennis lessons here locally, as well. McKayla, and her family, would like to thank all of those friends and family from the area, whom over the years, have been incredibly encouraging and supportive. She would like to give special thanks for the additional love and support that she received from everyone while she was in London, and since then. It really means the world to her! She looks forward to competing for Team USA at the 2016 Olympics, which will be held in Rio, so be sure to stay tuned!
2012 Sports Grand Marshal: Tom Hoff – 2008 Olympic Gold Medalist – Volleyball
Thomas John "Tom" Hoff is a middle blocker in Volleyball and has been with the U.S. National Team since 1996. He is a three time Olympian: 2000, 2004 and 2008.His team earned a Gold medal at the Bejiing Games in 2008.
In addition to indoor volleyball, Hoff also played on the Bud Light Pro Beach Volleyball tour.
Hoff spent his first two years of college at Ohio State and transferred to Long Beach State, earning several First Team All American honors, as well as setting a national record for most matches with 20 or more kills (25) and 10 or more blocks. In the Long Beach State men's volleyball record books, Hoff ranks #5 in career kills (1,230), #2 in kills per game (6.54), #4 in hitting percentage (.369) and no. 2 in blocks per game (1.65).Hoff earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering.
Tom resides in Laguna Niguel with his wife Sandy and his five daughters, Tatum (9), Ella (7), Ava (5) Demi &Zoey (3).
Laguna Niguel could not be more proud to have a true local Olympic Hero participating today!
2012 Kathy Beaufort – Community Grand Marshal
It is an honor to introduce Kathy Beaufort, the 2011 Laguna Niguel Citizen of the Year. Kathy is a 40-year resident of Laguna Niguel and she resides with her husband of 50 years, Ron. They raised 2 children and have 4 grandchildren. Kathy joined the Laguna Niguel Women’s Club in 1978. Her service to the community has included: Laguna Niguel Woman’s Club, Meals on Wheels, Children’s Home Society Member, Les Petites Fleurs, President of Dana Hills High School PTSA, South Coast Medical Center Auxiliary office and Laguna Niguel Historical Society. She has also assisted in the La Veta Neighborhood Enhancement Project, Garage Sale and Silent Auction and she has helped to substantially improve the community. Kathy exemplifies the positive, can-do attitude that defines the Citizen of the Year. The Citizen of the Year award began in 1990 as a joint project of Laguna Niguel Service Organizations to recognize a citizen who has demonstrated outstanding voluntary service to the community.
Thank you Kathy for your contribution to Laguna Niguel.
The Citizen of the Year award began in 1990 as a joint project of Laguna Niguel Service Organizations to recognize a citizen who has demonstrated outstanding voluntary service to the community. The Citizen of the Year is selected by former Citizens of the Year. If you would like to nominate someone who sounds like Citizen of the Year to you, the nomination period is from March 1-April 1 and applications can be found at any City facility or online at cityoflagunaniguel.org.