We begin today with the 25th anniversary of a day few living in the San Francisco Bay Area will ever forget. On Oct. 17, 1989 at 5:04 p.m. a 6.9 earthquake changed everything. The Loma Prieta quake killed 63 people -- most of them crushed in their cars when a double-deck freeway in Oakland collapsed. International media, in town for Game Three of the World Series at Candlestick Park, pivoted to covering the damage. Their focus was telegenic San Francisco and the devastated Nimitz Freeway in Oakland. But it was also chaotic in cities and towns closest to the epicenter. In Watsonville, just north of the Monterey County line, migrant farmers were forced to live in tents in the center of town. For days the magnitude of destruction near the remote epicenter in the Santa Cruz Mountains was overlooked. KQED's Silicon Valley News Editor Beth Willon was living there at the time and lost her home. Twenty-five years later she returned to her old neighborhood to bring us a story about the quake's lasting impact on the way homes are built today.
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