That night many of the neighbors offered condolences to the family and to the maintenance man. He was naturally very distraught. I think it was great how our little neighborhood came together to help a family grieve the loss of a beloved pet, family member and neighbor.
Lucille will be missed by all. I sure do hope all dogs do go to heaven.
Allison L. Fischer
Not ashamed of America
To the editor:
I am writing this letter in response to Matthew Wagner's letter that stated he was "ashamed to be an American."
To Mr. Wagner (and those like him):
I was disgusted by your letter. Frankly, you sound like an ungrateful child who takes this great country and its freedoms for granted.
I would like you to talk to my two children, whom just arrived back from eight months in Iraq. My kids are very proud 82nd Airborne soldiers. They know - like many proud veterans before them - what it is like to serve their country. They are extremely proud to be American and what we stand for in the eyes of the world freedom, liberty and justice for all.
They also know what it's like in a country like Iraq. They've seen war and how the Iraqi citizens have been oppressed - no liberty, no justice and no freedoms. Even everyday living such as housing with no bathroom facilities, donkeys instead of cars, living in fear of exercising their freedom of speech, religion and fearing for their personal safety.
Mr. Wagner, you need to take a trip to Iraq, to see how lucky you are to be American. Our great country and its military are the best in the world.
Without them, you would have never been able to use your freedom of speech to write your letter.
In closing, I would like to say to Wagner, you have clearly forgotten that "Freedom is not free." Get on your knees and thank God for America, our great military and its veterans and remember we are a truly blessed nation.
Shame on you, Matthew Wagner.
Sign me proud American and parent of two United States Army soldiers.
Young Life a great program
To the editor:
My name is Amber O'Kane and I am a senior at North Hagerstown High School. Over the last four years, I have been involved in many activities through school, such as concert choir, show choir, Madrigals, musicals, Best Buddies; and I am the 2003-2004 Student Government Association President. Outside of school, in my free time, I found a niche with the Young Life organization, and have found this experience to be one of the most important and valuable parts of my life.
I'm sure you would agree that there are many opportunities for teenagers to get in trouble. There are an equal number of positive opportunities to get involved with activities that encourage spiritual growth, good values and positive living. That is what Young Life is all about. This past year I was able to give my testimony about how Young Life and Jesus changed my life. I have learned that faith is not about accepting what you are told as true, but it is about learning to understand what is written, what is said and what is known - to determine how it affects my life and the lives of those around me.
I am being provided an opportunity to attend a summer camp where I can further explore Young Life as it pertains to me, as well as learn how I can become a Young Life leader so that I may share with others.
As I head to Frostburg University next year, I think that the skills I gain in this camp will go far in preparing me to take on this leadership role in the Young Life organization in Frostburg. However, I need financial support in reaching this goal. If you are willing to help support my journey, please make your donation out to Young Life.
Please send it to Amber L. O'Kane, 13308 Apple Hill Drive, Hagerstown, MD 21742.
I am eager to find my place in this world. I feel the calling to explore youth ministry as part of that journey - and I am sure that Young Life will be a great way to get involved. Any support will be greatly appreciated.
May God bless you now and always.
Amber L. O'Kane