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Around Hancock

August 28, 2008|By ANNE WEATHERHOLT / 301-678-6888

Behind the scenes

Behind the scenes -- that is where I found myself a week ago today when I got home.

I had called my husband, the Rev. Allan Weatherholt, from the road asking him about supper plans and found him at St. Thomas' Church, helping the women serve spaghetti.

He filled me in on the crisis going on at a local motel, a crisis that had brought almost 100 law enforcement officers, fire and rescue personnel, traffic control officials, State Highway workers and others to our little town.

I parked at the church and waded into the kitchen, filled with pots of boiling spaghetti, other containers of sauce, layers of bread, containers of salad and a long table set up on the stage.

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The stage had become literally a "staging area" with containers, utensils and napkins.

We cooked and served for a couple of hours. Then, when it seemed we had fed all the guys from the FBI, the State Police, the Sheriff's Department and the Town of Hancock, I went home.

I had only been there a few minutes when the phone rang -- we've got 45 more orders to cook! So I grabbed an apron, a few jars of sauce I had on my shelves and took off for the church. We cooked and served until close to midnight that night.

In the end, we sent nearly 150 containers of hot, steaming spaghetti and crisp bread up to the U.S. 522 bridge, ferried by fire and rescue personnel and volunteers from the Washington County Red Cross Chapter.

One official from the Hancock Fire Co. told me that he had been up for more than 24 hours, having stayed up on Wednesday evening when the crisis began and having gone to work, only to return to keep up the hospitality extended by the local fire station to the law enforcement guys who were sleeping at the Fire Hall.

Debbie Cohill, director of the Interfaith Service Coalition, had received the call in the middle of the afternoon that food would be needed for the law enforcement officers.

Local restaurants pitched in, but after they closed, we kept the St. Thomas' kitchen open and serving until everyone was taken care of.

Behind the scenes of every headline are those who quietly, generously go about helping to feed, comfort and sustain those on the front line.

History records the names of the generals, not the cooks. Yet, without the cooks, the generals would fail. On these few days, Hancock's best and strongest character could be seen -- maybe not on the front page of the paper, but only by the hungry FBI officers laughing with the police chaplains while sitting at the tables in the St. Thomas' Parish Hall.

Program for teens

The Hancock Branch of the Washington County Library is sponsoring a special "Teens after Hours" program Friday, Sept. 12, from 7 to 9 p.m. Teens ages 12 to 18 can come and enjoy refreshments, games, bring your favorite music, check out the new Wii games (or bring your own to share). The computers will be available. The Hancock Library is in Widmeyer Park.

 

Welcome, Dr. Hornick

Dr. Lawrence Hornick is the newest addition to the medical staff at the Tri-State Community Health Center, 130 W. High St. Dr. Hornick comes to Hancock from Virginia and has 20 years of experience as a general practitioner. He is a graduate of Eastern Virginia Medical School.

 

Farewell, Rev. Barlow

And finally, the Hancock community says a reluctant good-bye this weekend to one of this area's most beloved and active pastors. The Rev. Dr. John R. Barlow, at Warfordsburg (Pa.) Presbyterian Church for more than 10 years, has accepted a new call. This week will be his final Sunday here. He and his family are moving to Lebanon, Pa., where John will serve the Presbyterian Church in that town.

The folks at Warfordsburg are holding a farewell luncheon in John's honor this Sunday at 1 p.m. in their church's Faith Center. Friends and neighbors are welcome. Dr. Barlow was a key volunteer with the Interfaith Service Coalition, faithfully serving that important outreach agency as board vice president for a number of years. He will be remembered by many in our area for his strong and caring pastoral presence in numerous situations. He will be remembered by his fellow clergy as a warm and loving colleague. Godspeed, John, to you and to your wonderful wife and children!

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