Thanks by the shelf-load

As the Hood River County FISH food bank closed the books on the 2013 year, it has been able to look back over the year to evaluate its accomplishments and successes, writes Billie Stevens, the organization’s volunteer coordinator.

“While the need for the FISH food bank is the highest it has ever been, there are many things for which they are thankful. FISH food bank is thankful for:

n All the volunteers who were willing to take time from their busy schedules during the holiday season and all year-round to help sort and move food around

n The individuals who paid to have the drain in back of the Hood River FISH site fixed so we no longer have “FISH Lake” or an ice skating rink in the back parking lot

n All the people who gave donations of food and money to help us fill our shelves

n Shelves full of food

n FISH’s ability to help families who truly need our help each month

n Everyone who helped carry thousands of pounds of food to the storage area in the basement of FISH food bank. This includes Alan, Craig, Micah, Carol and Chuck for helping move the 1,540 pounds of food from the Mt. Hood Meadows donation to the downstairs

n All the volunteers who have helped in the process and all people who have donated money for the new FISH Building Project

n The hugs received from clients who could not make it without the help of FISH

n All who purchased the 978 “Hunger Bags” from Rosauers and the 1,165 “Help Us End Hunger” bags from Safeway. Total poundage of food was 22,296 pounds

n Art Carroll, for making 26 different trips to Rosauers to pick up the Hunger Bags sold. The Hunger Bags he transported totaled 11,711 pounds

n Organizations and business who conducted food drives over the holiday

n The 360 volunteers who volunteer on a regular schedule and the hundreds more who help when possible

One of the most important things FISH is thankful for is that it exists in a community that truly cares. Because of the generosity of residents of Hood River County and the Mid-Columbia, FISH food bank is able to serve 400 families monthly. The FISH food bank would like to thank everyone who has helped them fulfill its mission of “helping alleviate hunger.”

Delta Kappa gives to FISH

Delta Kappa ESA Sorority awarded $1,700 to the FISH food bank Building Project during its monthly social luncheon. Accepting the donation were Kathy Terry and Betty Lou Yenne, members of the FISH food bank. Also present were Delta Kappa President Penny Phelps, with Kathy Hines and Betty Draper, co-chairmen of the annual Home Tour, which helps raise the funds.

Delta Kappa ESA works to support all local endeavors such as scholarships (high school and community college), Families in the Park, Home Tour, Hope for Heroes, Easter Seals and St. Jude’s, to name a few.

Grateful for Hanels

“Thanks to Bill and Bob and the whole Hanel family,” writes Mark Adams of Parkdale. “They did a lot for me and many other families in the valley. I can’t speak for all, but I think we all owe the Hanel family a word of thanks. They contributed much to Hood River County.

“This is the end of an era; they will be greatly missed.”

Goodbye, Dr. Kathi

“It is with a sad heart that I write this letter about a much-cared-about member of our community, Dr. Kathi Runde-Jarrell,” writes Heather Clemons-Porter of Parkdale.

“When I called to get my dog’s prescription filled at our vet, Upper Valley Veterinary Clinic, I received the message that our beloved vet clinic has closed permanently.

“Dr. Kathi has been our vet since we moved to the Upper Valley, and has lovingly cared for all of our furry family with kindness, fairness and an understanding that went above and beyond. She knew that we loved our friends, and helped us care for them in a financially and emotionally supportive way.

“She helped my children and I lovingly put to rest our cats of 18 and 15 years respectfully, with guidance and sincerity, in the span of three weeks. She was a light in that experience even as she fought her own cancer.

“I am sad to hear that cancer is plaguing another beautiful spirit in our community and wanted to publicly thank her for the years of care she gave our family. I wish her and her family healing and love.”

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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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