Risking his life repeatedly, he hopped freight trains in Mexico to chase a story — the migration of children to America. Decades earlier, he covered another crisis: the arrival of thousands of Vietnamese evacuees at Camp Pendleton after the fall of Saigon.
Don Bartletti, who retired Nov. 25 after 31 years at the Los Angeles Times, knows immigration and refugees like the back of his Canons.
“No wall, no doctrine can stop humanity,” Bartletti said. “It’s as old as history itself. People used to chase the herd across the horizon for food. Now we’re chasing the almighty dollar.”
After attending Vista High School and Palomar College, the son of a career Marine enlisted in the Army in 1968 and attended Officer Candidate School in Fort Benning, Ga. — aiming to be in charge rather than report to the “nimrods” he saw in basic training.