6/13 Letters to the editor

*Parents urged to immunize kids against measles*Don't motorists know what sirens and lights mean?*Express your feelings, and seek out support*A tribute to treasured keeper of P

Parents urged to

immunize kids

against measles

Many of us have seen the reports about confirmed measles cases in Lane County. More cases are expected because of the contacts those cases have had.

I am encouraging parents to get their children immunized against this virus. The first MMR (measles/mumps/rubella) vaccination is due at 12 months of age, and a booster should follow at age 4.

Our vaccination rate for the clients who are seen at the health department was only 77 percent in 2006, so we know there are children out there who have not had this important vaccination.

Experience tells us that if children are behind on this vaccination, they are usually behind in others. I urge parents to review their children's immunization records and then see their family physician or schedule an appointment at Polk County Public Health to get any shots that are due.

At Polk County Health, our immunization clinics are Mondays and Thursdays from 8:15 to 11 a.m. and 1 to 4 p.m.

There is also a clinic in Independence on the third Wednesday of the each month from 1:30 to 3 p.m.

Much more information about measles and other childhood diseases can be found on the internet at www.vaccineinformation.org.

For questions, please call 503 623-8175, ext. 2298. Thank you.

--Judy Johnson

PCH immunization coordinator



Don't motorists

know what sirens

and lights mean?

On June 5, I watched Dallas police officers trying to respond to an emergency at Ellendale and Highway 223 in North Dallas.

Even with police lights flashing and sirens wailing, traffic did not stop.

I later found out there was a robbery at one of the credit unions located on Orchard Avenue.

The police could not get across the intersection because the cars never stopped or moved out of the way.

It is too bad each and every driver who paid no attention to the police cannot have a hefty fine and have to go back to school to learn what to do in a emergency.

--Joyce Coonrod



Express your

feelings, and

seek out support

For many people losing vision is like losing a loved one.

You may have very strong feelings about your vision loss, including anger, frustration, fear, regret, embarrassment, or grief.

Vision loss deserves grieving and acknowledgment, but you need to express your feelings. That means identifying how you feel.

Share your feelings in all their depth and richness with a friend, family member, religious advisor or counselor.

Some people even share their feelings with their pets. Others turn to a patron saint.

Turn to someone who will listen supportively and acknowledge your feelings. You need to talk to a caring person.

Just as there are many different people to whom you may turn, there are also many different ways of expressing your feelings: crying, screaming, whispering, writing, dancing, punching a pillow or just plain talking.

Expressing your feelings may be a process that unfolds over time and through many conversations. Whatever you do, though, don't bottle yourself up and tell yourself that there's no reason to have feelings at all.

My feelings were anger. I said Why, Lord? Why, me?

But, then, I certainly would not wish AMD on anyone else.

There used to be a saying, "Keep a stiff upper lip!"

We who have AMD need to express ourselves and inform the public about Age-Related Macular Degeneration. And we must hope that a cure will be found soon.

Anyone with AMD is welcome to join our support group. We meet 10:15 to 11:15 a.m. on the second Thursday of each month at Monmouth Senior Center, 180 Warren St. S. The next meeting is set for July 12.

For more information: Bob Langager, 503-508-4723 or the center at 503-838-5678.

--Bob L. Langager



A tribute to

treasured keeper

of Polk history

There is a historian, who resides in our county,

His collection of dates, names and places, his treasure a bounty.

On our very first meeting he already knew my name,

He told about the start of my land and who made its claim.

We've come to rely on his knowledge of how places came to be,

With careful documentation he traced each family tree.

Deciphering legends, logic, and lore,

Listening to some stories that he must find a bore.

It's a pleasure to know you, our friend, Arlie Holt,

For you could of have stayed isolated or maybe remote.

All of your effort preserving our past.

Thank you for giving us your gift that shall last.

--Deb Darr



PTC president

thanks a great

staff at Oakdale

I have been honored the last five years to be the Oakdale Heights Elementary Parent Teacher Club president.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank the community for its financial support with our fund raisers. They have so abundantly benefited the children of Oakdale.

Our community is one that keeps on giving to the future of Dallas through the Dallas school system.

A "thank you" is not enough to express our gratitude to Oakdale's staff. It takes an entire school to be productive and help our children grow. And that we have.

You not only do your jobs and do them well, you touch the hearts of the children and their families forever. You are helping create our future. May you all be touched as you have touched so many children in our community - and also our family.

Thank you again.

--Colleen Kibbey



Wednesday walks

in Independence

are a success

Each class at Ash Creek Intermediate School, Talmadge Middle School, Monmouth Elementary, Independence Elementary, and Henry Hill Elementary participated in a "Walking Wednesdays" event May 16, 23 and 30.

Students earned two points for walking and biking, as well as one point for carpooling/bus with some classes averaging 70 to 80 percent walkers and bikers.

Winning classes were those of Baumgartner at TMS; Naigger at MES; Newback at Ash Creek; and Breeden at IES.

Each winning class has been awarded with an end of the year pizza party, courtesy of one of its sponsors, Mendi's Pizza.

The contest is part of the Safe Routes to School Program aimed at encouraging, educating, enforcing and engineering to increase the safety and awareness of the importance of walking and biking to school.

Earlier surveys found that about 22 percent of students typically walk or bike to school, while 47 percent are transported in a family vehicle.

This event served as a way to encourage students to walk, bike or carpool to and/or from school.

The results show that such a technique can indeed be effective.

The event was also sponsored by City of Independence Traffic Safety Commission.

A big thank you goes to all principals, teachers and students who participated.

--Tim Brass

City of Independence


Special interests

are profiteers

in name of cause

When separating dollars from people, the first requirement is to create fear. Second is guilt ("If you don't do anything, you are part of the problem). Third, show the solution that requires money. Your money.

I have met very few people who do not share my love for the environment. Yet I have concerns with people who say they share these values, and then dupe their fellow Americans out of their hard-earned dollars in the name of forest protection.

It wouldn't be so upsetting if information used to get people to follow a cause had the essential data to make determinations. The quality of data used lacks science and historical backing. Groups justify that because it's "for the cause."

So when a group is asking for money to support a just cause, take the time to find the real cost to you. Be assured the testimony will pull at your heart. You may find lengthy and complex facts described in the solicitation of your money.

When the cause is forest protection, typically moneys are used for lengthy court trials, wasted resources and no management. You lose, because you pay again for recreational opportunities; the loss of diverse habitat for fish and wildlife; loss of funding for schools, roads and social services.

Remember, special interests are the profiteers of causes!

--Charles J. Hurliman

County commissioner




emergency staff

are top rate

I had a medical emergency recently that required calling 9-1-1.

Four wonderful Polk County No. 1 EMTs came promptly and delivered me to Salem's emergency room.

EMT Ben kept me comfortable while we were on the way.

It was 5:30 a.m. and I was greeted in the emergency room by one of Monmouth's unsung heroes, Jason Johnson.

He happened to be on duty when I arrived. Quickly, he made an assessment and started me on treatment. After six hours I was stable enough to be sent home.

My point is we often complain about paying the taxes that supports these wonderful services.

In a society we must all work together so that, fire, police, ambulance, schools and such are kept viable.

To not have them would be every man for himself and most of us would not survive.

Let's keep these services healthy, all of them. And be sure to join Fire-Med.

Thanks to the wonderful Polk County No. 1, our EMTs and to Jason and the staff in the Salem emergency room. You are all in my prayers.

--Rosemarie Lieuallen



Teacher gets great

joy from students

and community

To the Editor: I am proud to be a part of the Monmouth-Independence community. I am a teacher at Talmadge Middle School, and many individuals and businesses have contributed to the success of our programs.

We had several TMS Superhero T-shirts made at Think-it Screenprinting to reward students for their hero projects. We get donations and buy many treats from local businesses to reward the efforts of hard-working adolescents. The Independence Cinema helped us reward kids with movie money for outstanding fairy tales.

Brook's and Terry's helps us reward our top readers. Rick's Place in Monmouth has hosted our annual poetry reading for the past few years. The police have given many hours to Nite Court to keep kids off the street on Saturday nights.

I love my job! It is very rewarding to work with the youth of our community, and it feels really good to have the support of so many willing individuals and businesses.

Thank you, parents, for lending us your children. We will miss them next year, but we know they will go on to great things.

And to our community, thank you for making Monmouth-Independence a great place to live and raise children.

--Kari Meyer



Positive changes

make community

a better place

I would like to respond to the recent letter that addressed various changes in the community, of which the writer appears to disapprove.

According to the writer, fights are regular occurrences at Central High School. As a Central student, I can say that is definitely not true.

Security cameras are there not to necessarily monitor fights, but to keep the school safe and protect the students. To say that it is a regularity to see a fight in the halls is an ignorant assumption. The high school is just as safe as any other public place, and security has been increased in the past month to ensure that.

Outside doors are locked from 8:15 a.m. until 3:10 p.m. to make sure unauthorized persons do not enter the building.

It was also stated that the Ash Creek Trail will disrupt the only wildlife sanctuary left in the area.

It is not disrupting the wildlife sanctuary. The schools have been using the Ash Creek area for years to help teach understanding of sciences and agricultural topics.

The addition of a formal trail will only better the community. It will control foot traffic so that fewer plants and animals are affected by visitors. It will decrease the chance of someone being hurt while enjoying the beautiful scenery.

There will not be an adverse effect on the environment.

If what the community is doing so disrupts somebody's life, that person might find it more productive to relocate to some other community.

--Christiana Hiemstra



Warning: Slug

bait is deadly

to your animals

Last Friday night, I spread slug bait around my flower beds.

Saturday night, our dog Brandy died.

I'm writing this as a warning to everyone.

The emergency clinic said it was the worst poisoning they had ever seen and that the makers of slug bait keep adding stronger poisons to their products.

Please warn everyone you know: Don't use slug bait!

It's a quick killer. Within a matter of an hour, the poison attacked Brandy's nervous system. She was dead within two hours.

The vet said there was nothing they could do to save our beautiful dog.

Don't let this happen to your pet!

In loving memory of "Brandy Wine," 2001-2007.

--Tammy McCammon



Democrats refuse

to see immigration

policy's problems

Democrats are in such a rush to legislate comprehensive immigration reform that they not only ignore profound problems created by a "nation without a borders" policy but also pass up their favorite political tactic. That is, they remain hypocritically silent about the obscene profit-loving businesses that have been growing fat gobbling up undocumented workers as if they were high calorie manna from heaven.

As anyone can see, this agenda has nothing to do with defending the American people from harm, nothing to do with protecting the American people from economic injury, nothing to do with the American tradition that has embraced people from every part of the world.

Have the Democrats forgotten that they represent the working people of America? How do they justify their embrace of the illegal immigrants who are taking the jobs of American workers?

--Wayne Cooper



Store is thanked

for car wash site

Thank you, Dallas Wal-Mart for letting our Outdoor-N-More 4-H club have a car wash at your store.

Thank you for helping us raise money for camp scholarships and field trips.

--Kang-Ho Brooks



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