With coronavirus surging, California marks a subdued, socially distant July 4

Ronald Sarver walked along the Veterans Administration campus in West Los Angeles, where he had recently moved into L.A.’s first temporary tent city in four decades — an area meant for veterans without homes so they can wait out the COVID-19 crisis by sheltering in place and social distancing in their own tents.

“It’s better than nothing at all. Before this, I was waking up and all I had was a prayer,” said Sarver, who served in the Navy during the Iran hostage crisis.

Now, he said, he has a place to sleep and eats three meals a day. He’s grateful to have a place as the coronavirus — what he called “an act of God” — tears through the city.

On Independence Day, Sarver said, he felt patriotic.

“I was thinking earlier, and I teared up a little bit,” he said, an American flag pinned to his shirt.

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