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Jerry Nieblas, San Juan Capistrano; Janice Pickartz, Dana Point

Upon hearing of Dr. Byrnes’ intention to retire from the San Juan Capistrano City Council, the Capistrano Historical Alliance Committee would like to publicly acknowledge Dr. Byrnes for his immense contributions to San Juan Capistrano.

We consider him one of the governmental founding fathers of San Juan Capistrano. From day one, he guided the town with great commitment and caring. He is a government leader who truly represented the people, really listened to the historical families and was always open and receptive to our thoughts and ideas. He guided us into the 1970s, which was a time of change in town, always incorporating people and development together, while welcoming newcomers as well.

Yes, there were disagreements. But because of his calm presence and rational demeanor, it was always safe to agree to disagree no matter what the issue. He always managed to blend the working relationship between people and the local government.

During his most recent term on City Council, he gave many a sense of security that everything would be alright. We were again represented by the man whose trustworthy reputation reassured us as it had done so many times before.

Jerry Nieblas chooses these words, “He had the ability to guide our history and blend it with the necessary politics, and he did it very well. Because of Dr. Byrnes and his political legacy, my expectations of his replacement are high, very high.”

Let us all remember Dr. Byrnes’ inspiring words on Jan. 20, “…be kinder than necessary. Be guided by reconciliation and unification. Let us celebrate excellence, friendship and respect.

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  • Everyone appreciates the contribution and leadership of Dr. Byrnes. Thank you so much for the years of great guidance to our city.

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