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Adriel is an asset to the West Liberty community

Channel 7 News recently ran a rather shallow news episode on issues surrounding Adriel a school for troubled children which has been located in West Liberty, Ohio, for the past 113 years.

Wendy Levan, a resident of West Liberty, recently featured on Channel 7 called attention to the Adriel School and in her opinion its “threat” to her family and the friendly, sleepy community of West Liberty, Ohio.

My experience with Adriel began in 1965, when my mother and father operated as a temporary foster family for troubled children. My parents would go to Adriel every Sunday after Mass at St. Patrick’s in Bellefontaine, they would pick up one of the children, bring them to our home outside of Bellefontaine, fix them a meal and let them play in our home and on our 16 acre lot, in the yard or in the woods, pretending, make believing, just a time to be a kid, safe, among friends. I was a 13-year-old, happy, safe and content, not want of anything with loving parents and a strong family bond. This experience for me was an epiphany, I witnessed as a young man the positive affect acceptance brought to those less fortunate.

The children they brought to our home, just like the children that reside there today were hurt, abused, battered, lost, abandoned, forgotten, unwanted and most of all not loved. These children are not easy to care for or heal for that matter, some may never be healed for they have endured far to much for any cure we, as a society, have been able to invent.

The majority of the children of our community in Logan County, like Wendy’s children I assume, are wanted, are not lost, are not abandoned and are loved.

We live in a very special community here in Logan County, it’s personal here, it’s relatively very safe, we enjoy a unique sense of family, there are many community organizations and activities we all can enjoy ... what is confusing to me is how often we forget these assets.

What community can you name within 100 miles of West Liberty, with a “non-profit” organization that for the past 113 years has devoted its time and effort to help the battered, unwanted and abused children, both physically and mentally, that we after all as citizens, religious or non-religious human beings, are responsible for caring for?

I am proud that I live in and have raised my three children in a community that has an organization like Adriel, an organization devoted to caring for the less fortunate children in our society that apparently many of us still disregard.

Michael McGarry
Bellefontaine

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