A car ride changed everything.

The last memory Kim Aiken Jr. has of his childhood home in Long Beach is leaving it to climb into the car with his father, Kim Aiken Sr., and his older brother, Deshawn Aiken.

As was common for the then sixth-grader, Kim Jr. fell asleep as his father steered the car away from the coast and toward the desert. When he awoke, he saw a sign directing motorists to the University of Redlands.

“Where are we?” he asked his father. “Are we in Orange County?”

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It was then Kim learned, years after his parents’ divorce and the subsequent drifting from one place to another, that he would be calling Redlands home…