How come the “plaques” always go to the authority figures?


Wouldn’t it be nice if this town could give an honored recognition to — let’s say — an art teacher or something similar?


Former Burbank High swimmer, water polo player and coach David Nelson was honored during the Burroughs versus Burbank High swim meet Tuesday.

Nelson, a 2007 graduate, was killed last summer while serving in the line of duty as a Bakersfield Police Officer. He was 26.

A plaque was placed on the wall inside the pool area of the school to honor Nelson.

Principal Dr. Michael Bertram, former principal Bruce Osgood, former Burbank swim coach Adam Wright , Bakersfield Police Chief Greg Williams and Nelson’s brother Erik were among those that came out to honor the officer who had spent two years working Bakersfield.

“He was offered a full-time job in Washington D.C., but he said ‘I don’t think I can sit behind a desk,’” recalled his father Larry Nelson of his son’s choosing to go into law enforcement. “He said ‘I feel it is my duty to serve and protect.’ It’s hard that he’s not here, but he said ‘That’s what I want to do the rest of my life.’”


Like Larry Maxam, this is a guy who no one had ever heard of until the other authority figures and tough guys in town got a hold of him to exploit and sentimentalize.

So how about a plaque for Regnal Hall (for example), who actually did something for Burbank High? It was like pulling teeth to get this school district to put their old one back on the wall for Deane Wolfson.

And even then they still won’t freely call the BHS auditorium what it actually is, the Wolfson Auditorium. We’ve been documenting this slam for years.

You know, it never used to be this way. Nowadays they’d name the same auditorium after a cop or a soldier if they could.












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