Letters to the editor - 3/19

March 19, 2003

Harry Warner will be missed

To the editor:

The news of the death of Harry Warner Jr. spread quickly through The Herald-Mail. For most, it was followed by "Harry who?" But for a handful of us "old -timers," memories of the slightly built man who retired more than 20 years ago came to life.

My first encounter with Harry was 28 years ago and and was less than pleasant. Harry was a writer and his columns, published several times a week, spanned four decades. His topics were mostly of local interest and revealed his vast knowledge.

Harry didn't like being disturbed as he pecked away on his typewriter, nor did he like idle chatter. Once I accidentally invaded his creative space by bumping into his chair. This prompted the slamming of drawers and some low grumbling.

That sort of frightened me, but I decided to try to be friendly to him anyway.


I began speaking to him and commenting on his latest column. He seemed to warm to this. I would get an occasional smile, but his blue eyes still reflected a sadness. For nearly 25 years we exchanged Christmas cards and I even made it a point to send him a birthday card each year.

He was invited to our home for the holidays, but always graciously declined. He prefered to spend them as usual, alone.

Harry lived near downtown Hagerstown and would frequently walk into town for lunch. The thin man in the long black top coat and brown hat was a familiar sight about town. When a woman would pass by he would respectfully tip his hat. Now what man does that these days?

Harry was a loner. I respected his privacy and feel very grateful for his letting me in to just a tiny part of his world. I'm glad I could say he was a friend.

A tip of the hat to you, Harry. Rest in peace.

Tamara L. Hoffman
Advertising Editor
Herald-Mail Company


Re-enactors troubled by Fort Frederick

To the editor:

The problems experienced by re-enactors with the park staff have dramatically increased in the last few years, causing many to stop doing anything at Fort Frederick.

This impacts our community through a loss in tourism dollars, good will and general exposure to the public. I would also point out that many of these re-enactors used to travel long distances to volunteer at the Fort.

Re-enactors from all over the eastern United States and Canada would often show up for large events. The problems addressed in the letter have also caused the re-created home unit at Fort Frederick, Beall's Co. of the Maryland Forces, to split apart with most members opting to form a new unit not associated with Fort Frederick. Please also note that this unit was one of the oldest re-created French and Indian War re-enactment groups, with 28 years of volunteerism.

I do not feel that, in the current state of world affairs, the problems experienced by re-enactors at a state park really warrant much attention. The problem I see is that with budget cuts to help pay for home defense, etc., volunteers at a place like Fort Frederick become more important than ever before.

The current environment at the park is not one that encourages people to come forward and share their skills and knowledge freely as they have in the past. This is sad, due to the enormous potential for great educational programs and events that the public would certainly attend.

Trent Carbaugh

Boonsboro perfomance was most welcome

To the editor:

I am writing to publicly thank the Boonsboro High School Chorus for the program they brought to Fahrney-Keedy recently.

The music was outstanding and I wish I had the name of each soloist. Lacking that, however, I will simply say that each and every one has a beautiful voice, and our wish would be for a bright future for everyone that came to entertain us with music we love.

Selections like the medley that included "Shall We Gather at the River," and then the "Hallelujah Chorus" were forever favorites with residents. I heard residents say that they have never heard a better rendition of the "Hallelujah Chorus."

Much credit must go also to Paula Boyd, their director. She knows how to get music from a group. Best wishes to all.

Olive Peters

An assist for diabetics

To the editor:

This may be of interest to some veterans. An article in the Diabetes Interview publication mentions a device that is called Art Assist, which increases blood flow to the lower limbs, reduces the need for possible amputation by more than half in selected users and is effective in treating arterial disease.

Diabetes is the most frequent cause of lower-limb amputations, with more than 92,000 performed each year, according to the American Diabetes Association. The estimated cost of major amputations range between $20,000 to $60,000, compared to the cost of $1,200 for the Art Assist "compression cuff."

The device provides a massage like compression and is said to triple blood flow, which not only lowers the risk of amputation but also relieves symptoms of peripheral arterial disease, which include pain, cramps and a tired feeling in the calf or thigh that is triggered by walking.

A.C.I Medical of San Marcos, Calif., which makes the device, says the Art Assist is covered by most private insurance carriers. The company is in the process of obtaining coverage from Medicare and Medicaid.

I asked my doctor at the VA Medical Center at Martinsburg about this device and I was told that because of the hospital's tight budget they would not buy it.

Arthur P. Keifer

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