Letters to the editor

July 04, 2006

Military careers should be honored

To the editor:

I would like to express my disbelief at the principal and vice principal at Smithsburg High School who set the stage for those to be honored at this year's graduation, honoring the class of 2006.

During the graduation, there was an honorary graduate; he was a gentleman who left the high school in ninth grade as a 14-year-old student to fight for his country in World War II. To receive an honorary diploma was something that was well deserved, for this man went to war for his country.

My disbelief is in the fact that for some reason or another, Smithsburg High School felt it unnecessary to honor the graduates who have decided to enlist in the military, during this current time of war.


Our country is at war with Iraq, which is not a mystery to anyone. I would like someone to please explain to me why Smithsburg High School felt that it was unnecessary to mention our children, our sons, our brothers, our uncles and our nephews who are going off to serve our country, during a time of war.

They could take the time to honor certain students going to universities and colleges, certain students who had the ability to win scholarships. But, they had no time to honor the boys who are willing to give their lives for these freedoms.

I would like at this time to honor these young gentlemen, who have decided that it is their God-given right to defend their country, and our freedom to be so forgetful that we think honoring them is not worth a short two minutes during a high school graduation ceremony.

Logan Miss, United States Marine Corps.

Tyler Shetter, United States Marine Corps.

Matthew Leeney, United States Marine Corps.

So many of us have taken for granted that our freedom will always be. We tend to forget those who have kept that right for you and for me. A soldier will stand and fight all night to keep us from harm. While some of us sit at home and refuse to lift an arm. While you sit around and complain about what you have or where you live, remember what a soldier somewhere is about to give for you. A soldier stands tall and proud and ready for the fight. We must stand strong behind them through their hard and difficult plight.

Susan Miss


A bright light in the state system

To the editor:

The Herald-Mail reported Bernie Decker has been named MCIH employee of the month (June 11, page C5).

This is a long overdue honor for an officer known by staff and prisoners as a bright, shining light in the dark recesses of the penal system.

On June 2, 1993, all 134 lifers were removed from work release and arbitrarily shipped to different medium security prisons. I ended up at MCIH despite the fact my base files contained explicit orders I was to never be sent back to MCIH after a series of 1970s lawsuits.

Arriving at MCIH, I was anxious and thought the same egregious conditions which existed in the 1970s were likely still present.

Then I woke up about July 22, 1993, blind in my right eye - it was as if a miniature squid just squirted ink inside my eyeball.

Fortunately Officer Decker was my annex housing officer, and he called medical without success. It was a Thursday and the attitude at medical was to, "Tell him to take an aspirin, put in a sick call slip, and we might see him Monday."

Nope, Officer Decker was having none of that. He called Housing Sergeant Verdier, who called medical with no greater success. But the two of them then spent an hour in repeated phone calls to custody supervisors, medical supervisors, and top administrators and ultimately I was seen by Dr. Sweatter after he answered one of their calls.

Dr. Sweatter immediately diagnosed a burst blood vessel and torn retina requiring immediate laser surgery, which I received.

So kudos and congrats to Officer Decker for a well-deserved honor. He started the chain of events which saved my sight. While there are those who may wish this weren't so, as the recipient I have been forever grateful.

Douglas Scott Arey


Westover, Md.

Pastor Miller speaks the truth

To the editor:

Thank God for Pastor John Miller for speaking the truth and not being afraid to preach the gospel.

Pastor John does not gloss over truths but preaches as Jesus taught his followers.

Also a great thank you to Mr. Blair Hess Jr.

He is exactly right in all he says today. Read The Herald-Mail's letters of June 24.

Rosa Lee Meyers


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