Saturday, November 9, 2013
The community honors veterans in a variety of ways on Monday, a national holiday.
As the nation prepares for Veterans Day observances, Hood River News wanted to know peoples’ thoughts about the honored occasion.
We asked six community members “What message do you for have for veterans?”
We talked to people in local businesses, at Elks Lodge, the fire hall and other locations, and here are their replies:
“As a 37-year Elk and the son of a World War II veteran, I agree with the Elks statement that so long as there are veterans they will always be in our hearts. And having a son (Gary) who has done three tours in the Middle East and suffers from post traumatic stress disorder, veterans have my total support.”
“Both of my brothers served at the same time in Korea and Vietnam. They were told not go anywhere with their uniform because they would get spat on. I am grateful that has changed. I’m grateful for their service; but underneath that I wish we’d find other ways to solve our conflicts than going to war. I hear veterans and others who think it should be a last resort, but we seem much more willing to go to war without trying everything else, and that troubles me.”
“From our perspective at the fire department, anybody that goes into service to sacrifice themselves for the common good, I think is something we totally identify with. The days of remembrance of patriotism and sacrifice set our country apart — not only to free our country, but to show other people around the world that we’re willing to sacrifice for the greater good.”
“In my family, both my grandfathers served in World War II and I know that everyone in our family at the time was nervous with them being overseas, but we realized the sacrifices that they made. Growing up in a generation where I haven’t had to face that, to face combat, I’m just really appreciative of the sacrifices people make that take them away from their families and for the families that support them when they do that and welcome them back home.”
Mary Kay Bielemeier
“There needs to be more than just Veterans Day to honor and to be thinking of the past veterans, our present veterans, and our future veterans. And their families need that support too. To me, Veterans Day is every day; I think about them all the time.”
“I’d just like to say thank you for everything the veterans have done for us. It’s made the United States a lot better place to live. It makes America the home of the free. We live in the best country in the world, and we owe everything to the people who have fought the battles for us. We can’t ever say thank you enough.”
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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