Written by Bev McDonnell, Bellefontaine
Wow! This community we live in is awesome. I just got home from the “Doors of Encouragement” auction, and I was truly overwhelmed. I wish I had each and every name of the wonderful people who actually bought the doors, the many, many loving hands that created them, the “behind the scenes” people who did all the extra work to make the auction such a tremendous success and the many “unsung heroes” who make this journey through cancer easier for those of us who have been chosen to take the actual journey.
I would love to give each and every one of them a huge hug and thank them from the very bottom of my heart. “Cancer sucks” is a huge understatement of the situation. But I have learned this: Cancer also creates heroes out of ordinary everyday people and allows us all to witness the depths of kindness and love that surrounds us.
People are amazing when given the opportunity.
Each and every person who was involved with this fundraising effort, earned several feathers for their wings, long before they get to Heaven. You have touched many hearts and brought untold blessings to many, many people.
If we all work together for a cure, someday cancer will be our generation’s polio, TB and smallpox — gone, but not forgotten. The journey may be rough but when we get there, it will be worth it.
So, to my personal “super hero” my little sister Debbie Wagy, to each and every person who steps up everyday to do what they never knew they could to, to every person who has not yet been called to help and to each and every person struggling on this journey: Thank you for all your efforts. Let’s keep “paying it forward,” keep the ball rolling and working together toward that cure.
Thank you one and all!
Last Updated on Thursday, 16 May 2013
Written by Sara Storm, Bellefontaine
Thank you to all those involved in the “Doors of Encouragement” project, especially to Melody Couchman the primary organizer.
I am one of the locals dealing with cancer, and I have received help from the Logan County Cancer Society.
We all benefit from giving our support to local worthwhile projects.
Last Updated on Thursday, 16 May 2013
Written by Melanie Engle, Executive Director, Logan County Children’s Services
Every year, approximately 30,000 young people leave the foster care system without lifelong families — most at age 18. On their own, these young adults must navigate a weakened economy offering fewer jobs and less support for vital services such as housing. They need — and deserve — caring adults who love and support them, caring families like you!
I would like to take a moment to recognize our foster parents for their efforts throughout the year. Together, we can offer young people in foster care the guidance, stability and love that is so essential for becoming successful adults. We applaud your caring commitment and continuing support. With the help of dedicated people like you, many formerly abused or neglected children and teens will either reunite safely with their parents, be cared for by relatives or be adopted by loving families.
Without the ongoing efforts of our foster parents, too many children will end up facing life’s challenges all alone. We greatly appreciate and recognize all that you do to help change a lifetime for a child in need.
Thanks for all that you do!
Logan County Children’s Services
Last Updated on Thursday, 16 May 2013
Written by Edwin Dougherty, Bellefontaine
I read with interest the letter of U.S. Senator Rob Portman. “No off-season in Canton this year” in the Feb. 14 issue of your paper. Senator Portman discussed the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio, and how Canton will celebrate the 50th year of the hall. I am a football fan, never miss a Steelers game but I believe that a U.S. Senator should have more important things to do in Washington than to write letters about the hall of fame and pass coin acts.
Senator Portman and a Democrat from West Virginia took time to introduce the Pro Football Hall of Fame Commemorative Coin Act. Senator Portman stated that “at no cost to the taxpayer” these coins would be designed and coined in the U.S. Mint. I disagree with the senator about the no cost issue.
Senator, I believe that there is important work to be done in Washington, and we need the focus of the well-paid senators and their staff to focus on the important issues. Fyi we are still involved in a war in Afghanistan and there are budget issues that should be addressed. Yet our senator is taking valuable time to listen to ideas involving commemorative coins, then no doubt assigning staffers to work on the details, prepare the text so our senator can bloviate about this important issue, one would assume that he also had to meet with his “friend from West Virginia” and then take time on the Senate floor.
Now, who pays the senator and his staff? We do and will the expected profit from these coins reimburse the treasury for the hours it takes to create legislation to approve a coin act? I would like to see that happen. So is this no cost to the taxpayers?
One last point, it has been reported that the NFL generates $9,000,000,000 (nine billion dollars per year), that is billion with a B. It seems to me that the NFL could have taken some of their money and commissioned the independent Franklin Mint or some other privately owned mint to make these coins commemorating their hall of fame instead of the grandstanding senator and other politicians that will no doubt get involved.
Last Updated on Saturday, 23 February 2013
Written by Tracy D. Dilts, Bellefontaine
Young adults, older teenagers, please learn from tragedy.
I sit here with elephant tears in my eyes, a black hole-size empty spot in my heart, and an empty-armed hug.
Tragedy has happened to parents, grandparents, sisters, brothers, aunts, uncles, other family members and dear friends. Tragedy I say, that could have been avoided by better choices. Drinking or not drinking is a choice, driving and not driving is a choice, letting young friends drink and not drink is a choice.
My grandson made the wrong choices, he was young and a friend to many, he chose to drink and he chose to drive. As a result, well, we all know that ending.
Friends, be a real friend, instead of getting “drink” for that young friend, please say no.
I’m not just an old (fuddy-duddy) ... when I say these things.
Please, you make the correct choices, don’t underage drink, don’t ever drink and drive and don’t allow underage drinking.
One more time: Don’t drink and drive!
Stay alive for all of us.
Who knows, you might just live to be an old (fuddy-duddy) yourself. Let’s hope!
Tracy D. Dilts
Last Updated on Saturday, 09 February 2013
Written by Jennifer L. Johnson Bellefontaine
To whom it may concern:
Do you have elementary age children in Bellefontaine City Schools? If so, you may want to continue reading. I, as well as many residents of Bellefontaine, have two children currently attending elementary school. For two years I have argued the policies enforced by our schools. Specifically, the policy on how our children are dismissed each day. Like a herd of sheep, they open the gates and release them into the open field. Optimistically hoping they will return to their rightful shepherds. The school says, this teaches them independence and many parents have complained they shouldn’t have to get out of their vehicles. Does this sound insane to anyone else? Maybe I’m just crazy, but I doubt it.
My concerns are what will happen if I’m late one day? What if a classmate’s parent kindly offers them a ride home? Or worse, what if someone with bad intentions succeeds in convincing them to go with them? So I voiced my concerns to the principal and the superintendent. The principal’s response, “If it makes you feel better, we’ve never had such an incident.” Both responded, “Our policy is not going to change.” Have you heard the saying, “There’s a first time for everything?” I’m sure most would agree, I don’t want my child to be that first.
After the recent tragedies, you would come to suspect that all schools are reviewing their policies and procedures. However, Bellefontaine City Schools seem to think that theirs are just fine and there is no need for change. I feel very differently, as I hope you may. After an interview on television of a former FBI agent, in which he gave tips of school safety and how all schools need to look into their security; a light bulb went off.
To prove my point of the possible outcome of this policy, I decided to send my brother to the school to pick up my children unannounced. I chose him for a couple of reasons. One, I was sure no one at the school knew who he was because he has never been there before. Two, he has more than a dozen tattoos on his neck and arms, piercings in his face, and one inch holes in his ears. Sounds like someone who would be hard to miss in an elementary school setting right? Wrong! Not only did he roam the hall without question, he waited inside the school in front of the office for my children to be released. Guess what happened next? He walked right outside that school with my kindergartner and first-grader, without a single word said.
Are you as outraged as I am? This could have been any one of your children. A predator can walk into our school at any time and harm our children. The one place we are comfortable leaving our children. The one place we thought they were safe.
For those who may be wondering, my children are very smart and they know what to do if approached by a stranger. We remind them of the constant dangers of the world regularly and how to deal with such. With that said, all parents are not as attentive and all children do not listen and learn the same. So the responsibilities falls to our schools to insure our children return safely to us each day.
Did you know:
80,000 children are abducted across America each year?
2,185 children are abducted in the U.S. every single day?
In Ohio alone there are 2,000 elementary schools and:
19,000 sex offenders?
5,000 children are abducted into human trafficking each year?
46 children are currently missing in Ohio?
Now, tell me is it to outlandish to think that our schools are not as safe as they would like us to believe? That may be, just maybe we should look into our current policies? I cannot do this alone, please help me keep our children safe. A short call to our superintendent or school could make a huge difference. I know it’s unrealistic to think about every parent trying to pick up every student all at the same time. However, with all the educated people in our school district, I’m sure they could come up with one good idea. Thank you for your time and I appreciate any help with the cause.
BCS Superintendent Office 937-593-9060
Northeastern Elementary 937-599-4431
Southeastern Elementary 937-599-4331
Jennifer L. Johnson
Last Updated on Thursday, 31 January 2013
Written by Jerry Turner Quincy
From a political standpoint, can there ever be a fair hearing in Logan County? A case in point was Examiner Staff Writer Joel E. Mast’s blatantly one-sided reporting in the paper’s Thursday, Jan. 8, edition.
Ostensibly, Mast’s front page article concerned the appearance of Ben Famous, a legislative liaison for recently re-elected Ohio United States Senator Sherrod Brown, at a Logan County Area Chamber of Commerce breakfast. Brown is a Democrat.
What it amounted to was a mash-up of Republican “talking points.”
The litany included debt reduction, instead of the needs of people, an assault on our local schools and what they allegedly teach or don’t teach, too many regulations for businesses, and gun control.
As a former newspaperman myself, I will cut Mast a little slack in consideration of where the meeting took place.
The chamber of commerce is nobody’s idea of a liberal organization.
The C of C is a fiercely anti-Democrat, anti-union, right-to-work outfit. The latter meaning the right-to-work for less.
Some of these chamber of commerce folks are so far to the right they’d make a member of the John Birch Society blush — if we still have a John Birch Society. It’s more likely known as the Tea Party today.
Mast wrote that the above (debt reduction, education etc.) were a “few of the issues broached during a roundtable discussion.”
I’m wondering what were some of the other issues “broached.”
I’m also curious as to why the event didn’t take place before a more diverse group of people.
Oh, pardon me, these are the so-called “community leaders.”
Admittedly, it would be difficult to have a wide range of political thought in Logan County, simply based on long-time voting patterns here.
Nevertheless, it’s worth a try. For the time being, we’re stuck with the status quo, such as it is.
At the meeting, according to Mast, it was purported that “60 percent of Logan County children do not go on after high school” and are “lacking skills and attitudes that area employers need.”
As a former student, current student, teacher or administrator of a Logan County school, I would be deeply offended by such assumptions.
In the last three decades, private sector corporations and big business have gutted the American economy by shipping millions of jobs elsewhere in order to fatten their bottom lines. Their contempt is so brazen as to now fault the American worker for that guard.
The evidence is that corporations are sitting on trillions of dollars in assets — record highs, in fact — while the American public in general continues to suffer mightily.
We’re left with a whole lot more people for much less of the pie.
The chamber of commerce, keep in mind, is the mouthpiece of business — both small and big.
I’ve lived in this county most of my life and known countless outstanding individuals and contributors to society, who never spent a day in college.
I never spent that day, either, and feel none the worse for it.
I will be celebrating my 50th Class Reunion later this year (from Riverside High) and still revere many of my teachers, most of whom have since passed on.
Through the efforts of those dedicated professionals and my mother’s good will, I was well prepared for the “hard knocks” of life, so to speak.
I think teachers are getting a rotten deal these days. Their ranks are being slashed to ribbons. For those surviving the purges, their wages and benefits are often frozen or cut.
Here is what I think about deficit-spending cuts and entitlement reform (don’t like the word entitlements).
I’ve yet to read about or have it explained to me by anybody, how balancing a budget, such as the federal government’s, could possibly benefit anyone other than those who don’t need it.
Balancing a household budget is a good thing. But the residents of a home are not responsible, at least in part, for the well-being of millions.
Were it not for the federal government’s assistance, in particular with unemployment compensation, food stamps, anti-poverty programs and the likes, the situation in this country, for millions would reach tragic proportions more often.
Make no mistake about this, however, the people clamoring for unlimited government in this nation care for the future of their children and grandchildren. They just don’t give a d--- about the rest of us.
Who fills that void?
Sometime back, I was addressing some of these matters with a Bellefontaine man I’ve known for years. He’s a decent fellow.
He said to me “from what you write, I’d say you’re a liberal Democrat.”
He intimated that my opinion of schools and teachers, for example, was influenced by the years I spent as a truant officer in that business (26 years), and that I have a School Employees Retirement System pension. In addition, I was elected to and served a term on the Bellefontaine board (1980-83. I didn’t seek re-election.)
In regard to the school issue, he’s on solid ground again.
Following is where we part ways, however.
He’s a conservative Republican, who now labels himself an independent.
When I asked him, though, for one liberal idea he could embrace, he was stumped for an answer.
Even as a liberal Democrat, there have always been conservative measures I support. I believe in the death penalty and in the Second Amendment’s right of the people to keep and bear arms, to name a couple.
These chamber of commerce types mentioned earlier are like a one-trick pony. And the trick is on us.
I’ve become plenty put out over the years with the ideas that theirs is the only line of political discourse in Logan County.
It isn’t. Nor should it ever be.
Last Updated on Saturday, 19 January 2013