A Man of All Seasons

Community raises a flag for the late Paul Walden

The familiar Paul Walden greeting, “Good morning,” is emblazoned in the minds of those who knew the late Hood River legislator, and now the phrase is permanently commemorated on a flagpole at his final home, Providence Brookside Manor.

Walden, who died March 28 at the age of 85, was well known for greeting friends with, “Good Morning,” morning, afternoon or evening.

“And to me, it was usually, ‘stay calm’,” said his son, Greg Walden, during Saturday’s dedication ceremony attended by about 100 people at Brookside.

The flagpole on the south end of the grounds bears a plaque reading: “Good Morning. Our Flagpole and all it Represents/Dedicated to the Life of Paul Walden/A Committed Public Servant and Great Friend.”

Greg Walden, the Second District U.S. Representative, recently gave his father a flag that had flown over the U.S. Capitol, and Walden elder had decided Brookside needed a flagpole to fly the banner. He helped start a fundraising campaign along with other residents.

Paul Walden was described as a standard of friendship and humor in his two years at Brookside, as well as throughout his career in the state Legislature in the 1970s, and 47 years as radio broadcaster in Hood River and The Dalles.

“Paul was a man of all seasons who could adjust to any circumstance,” said Walden’s friend, Bob Neiman, during the short ceremony.

Neiman said Walden and other friends had breakfast every day together at Brookside. They traded “puns, jokes and even insults,” Neiman said.

“He’d look us over and say, ‘Is everybody up?’ Well, we were all up in different stages. But Paul, we’re all up in your honor and we salute you.”

Rachel Shields of Hood River said Paul “never refused a phone call, even when he was on the (Legislative) floor. He was always interested in child care legislation.”

Greg Walden said that his father, as the only boy growing up with six sisters, “felt picked on but he always had a way of getting even.”

One night, his youngest sister kicked him under the large oak dinner table, and, in retrailation he kicked her back.

“His dad asked, ‘Who kicked me?’ and his sister said, ‘I thought I had kicked Paul.’

“Dad never said a word. He knew when to keep quiet,” Greg Walden said.

Brookside administrator Mary De La Rue welcomed the public to the event, and Providence Chaplain Gary Young led the group in prayer.

The Boy Scouts of Troop 378 raised the flag followed by the assemblage singing “America” — all four verses.

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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 www.co.hood-river.or.us to opt-in for citizen alerts. Enlarge

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