Pastor begins 21-day fast to commemorate 9-11

The Rev. David Duncombe of the Columbia River Fellowship for Peace began a 21-day fast Aug. 21 to commemorate the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11.

“For me, this is a fast to remember the deaths of all people connected with the 9-11 attack on our country,” Duncombe said. “You might call it a mourner’s fast. I see the fasting of us all as an act of spiritual significance — something that connects us to everyone who died in the shadow of 9-11.”

Duncombe, of White Salmon, Wash., will be joined by two other men who plan 11-day fasts: Lou DeSitter of Hood River, and Paul Woolery, also of White Salmon.

Community members are welcome to join the fast. Organizer Paul Blackburn said more than three dozen people have already signed up to participate — many for a day. Registration can be done at Waucoma Bookstore or by e-mailing Blackburn at

The Rev. Duncombe is a veteran of several extended fasts, most recently one for 45 days in l999, and another for 50 days in 2000, both of which he did to bring national attention to the subject of debt relief for impoverished nations.

The current fast will end at Wilson Park in Hood River on Sept. 11 at 5:30 p.m. with a short service by Rev. Duncombe, and a simple potluck dinner. The event will be attended by Francis Moore Lappé, the author of “Diet for a Small Planet.”

Lappé will then offer the keynote address of the week-long series of events commemorating 9-11 at the Hood River Middle School at 7 p.m.

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Parkdale third graders sing "12 Disaster Days of Christmas"

Welcome to your sing-able Christmas gift list. What follows is an emergency rendition of “12 Days of Christmas” – for outfitting your home or car in case of snow storm, earthquake, flood or other emergency. Read it as a simple list, or sing it to the tune of “12 Days” – you know, as in “ … and a partridge in a pear tree…” Not to make light of it, but the song is a familiar framework for a set of gift ideas that you could consider gathering together, even if the recipient already owns items such as a bunch of coats, tire chains and flashlights. Stores throughout the Gorge are stocked up on all these items. Buying all 12 days might be prohibitive, but here are three ideas for checking any of the dozen off your list (notations follow, 1-12.) The gift items needed to stay warm, dry and safe are also coded to suggest items in your abode (A) in your car (C) or both (B). 12 Gallons of Water (A) 11 Family meals (B) 10 Cans of propane (A) 9 Hygiene bags (B) 8 Packs of batteries (A) 7 Spare coats (B) 6 Bright red flares (C) 5 Cozy blankets (B) 4 Tire chains (C) 3 Flashlights (B) 2 cell phone chargers (B) 1 And a crush-proof first aid kit (B) Price ranges? Here’s a few quotes for days Three, Two, Four and Nine: n A family gift of flashlights (three will run $15-30, Hood River Supply, Tum-A-Lum) n Cell phone chargers (two will run $30-60) n Tire chains (basic set, $30, Les Schwab, returnable if unused for the winter) n Family meals ($100 or so should cover the basics for three or four reasonably well-fed days) n The home kit should be kept in a handy place near an exit, and remember that water needs to be replenished every few months. If you have a solid first aid kit already, switch out the gift idea with “and-a-sto-o-u-t- tub-for it-all …” Otherwise, it’s a case of assembling your home or car kits and making sure all members of the family know what the resources are and how to use them (ie flares and propane). Emergency situations are at worst life-threatening, at best deeply uncomfortable if you and your family are left without power for an extended period, or traveling and find yourself in a situation where you need to wait out a storm, lengthy traffic delay, or other crisis. Notes on the 12 gift ideas: 12 – Gallons of water: that’s one per person in a four-member family to last for three days, the recommended minimum to be prepared for utility outages. 11 – Easy-open packaged goods, energy bars, dried food and nuts are good things to include for nutrition. Think of what your family of four needs for three days to stay fortified and hydrated (see number 12). Can-opener also recommended 10 – If you have a propane camping stove, keep extra fuel handy. 9 – Hygiene bags: put packaged moistened towelettes, toilet paper, and plastic ties in large garbage bags (for personal sanitation) Resource list courtesy of Hood River County Emergency Management, Barbara Ayers, manager/ 541-386-1213. The county also reminds residents to Get a Kit, Make A Plan to connect your family if separated, and Stay Informed. See to opt-in for citizen alerts. Enlarge

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