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Couple continue to make their city the best

August 10, 2010|By Jon Haber, Special to the News-Press

Donald and Esther Norbut have lived in La Crescenta since 1972, and the married couple have been active in the community since the day they moved into their home.

The Norbuts, who fittingly met when they both volunteered at a school for disabled children in Huntington Park more than 50 years ago, agree that remaining vocally active and volunteering daily is their calling in La Crescenta.

"You have to see if you can help people around you," Esther Norbut said. "If you don't, who will?"

The Norbuts said they love each other's company, and that's why they usually volunteer or attend the CV Town Council meetings together.

"After 53 years, you kind of get used to each other," Donald Norbut said.

The Norbuts decided to move to La Crescenta in the early 1970s because Donald Norbut had been to the area many times to visit relatives, and he fell in love with the community. They continue to show their love for La Crescenta by remaining proactive in their community.


"You have to keep beating the drums and hope somebody hears what we have to say," he said.

In recent years, the Norbuts dedicated endless amounts of time to better their neighborhood. In 2001, Esther Norbut took pictures for a slideshow depicting the development of La Crescenta's new library. The DVD continues to play at the counter of the library today. The Norbuts also promoted safety by supporting their community's cause to get a left-turn light at the intersection of La Crescenta and Foothill Boulevard. And to this day, the couple attend monthly Town Council meetings and express their opinions on issues they feel need to be addressed.

The couple also volunteer for various community organizations, including the Glendale Quilt Guild. The Norbuts occasionally host guild meetings at their home, which is lavishly decorated with colorful quilts destined to be sent to friends, relatives, war veterans and others. While Donald Norbut doesn't quilt, his wife said he helps "supervise" the activity.

The Norbuts also are active in trying to save the Verdugo Hills Golf Course, which may be demolished and replaced by condominiums. The couple feel it is important to keep the course and recreational areas in the community for adults and children, rather than build condos and mansions to please wealthier residents.

"Right now, there is very little of that kind of recreation that the children can enjoy," Esther Norbut said. "It's extremely important to save it and maintain it as nice and beautiful."

The Norbuts also are members of the Southern California Genealogical Society, the Glendale Historical Society and Friends of La Crescenta Library and give support to smaller community projects, such as preserving the local vineyards in La Crescenta.

"It wouldn't be worthwhile if it wasn't going so good," Esther Norbut said. "I'm hoping the downtown folk can add some more rules for the community and help prevent the mansionization of some of the homes. That's next on the list."

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