letters to the editor 4/25

April 25, 2002

Medical need was well-met

To the editor:

Herald-Mail readers should know about the heroic actions of prisoners, correctional officers and local doctors who just saved the life of Alonzo Reese, whose bad seizure led to the discovery of a brain tumor.

Alonzo Reese was sitting in his chair when, without warning, he fell to the floor face-forward. His life was saved by the quick action of a fellow prisoner, James Garris, who witnessed the fall, removed Alonzo's glasses, and called 4-12 shift Officer Harris, who recognized the need for immediate medical attention.

Her calls brought Sergeant Asper, medical staff and others, and Reese was transported to Washington County Hospital, where two surgeons, Dr. O'Malley and Dr. Peprah, removed the softball-sized tumor.


Officer Harris modestly told me, "I didn't do anything special. I just did my job."

Alonzo Reese did not feel that way. He said, "I am so grateful, and so thankful to God our Heavenly Father first and foremost for giving me another chance at life. Also, I want to give a heart-filled thanks to all the doctors and nurses who cared for me in my time of need.

"To Officer Harris on the 4-12 shift and other assisting officers who got me up to the MCIH hospital and out to Washington County Hospital, I want to say thank you very much."

Community Correctional Services Committee member and Christian volunteer Carl Howe, who brought this news story to my attention, observed that, "Several things made (Reese's) rapid treatment and recovery possible. First was the assistance of a peer and then prompt attention by Officer Harris, quick transfer to the hospital and subsequent transfer to Washington County Hospital.

"The combination of these things, which fell into place quickly and almost effortlessly, would not have happened without the timely care of many people and a medical system that functioned effectively."

I would like to offer kudos to everyone involved. Frequently, we forget to say thanks to those who provide careful attention to genuine medical needs, so this incident provides a wonderful example of how our community, working together, can bring a heart-warming conclusion to a brain-tingling situation.

Douglas Scott Arey

MCIH #130196 A-1-1-20


Fine presentation at county museum

To the editor:

The Washington County Museum of Fine Arts, on Sunday April 14, presented, free of charge, to a standing room only audience of over 200 , SALSAMBA, a five piece Latin jazz group from Pittsburg.

The concert was performed as a tribute to the late local philanthropist Bennett Rubin. a businessman and jazz producer, who had one production nominated for a Grammy Award. Rubin was a member of the Board of Trustees of the museum as well as president of the Maryland Symphony Orchestra.

Several of Rubin's jazz friends attended, including jazz great Frank Wess, who has played every major jazz venue in the world, and Sandy Jackson, widow of famous jazz musician, Milt Jackson.

The museum volunteers and the Singer Society hosted a reception at intermission enabling the musicians to meet with the audience over a cookie and a mimosa.

Salsamba kept our toes tapping for more than two hours to the beat of their Carribbean rhythms with a variety of instruments including guitar, congo drums, soprano sax, alto sax, bass, and drums.

I wish to thank the museum trustees and director Jean Woods for this very entertaining presentation and their tribute to a truly generous gentleman, Bennett Rubin.

C.R. Miller


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