Letters to the Editor - Jan. 21

January 20, 2011

What happens if hospital gets demolished?

To the editor:

I simply cannot help myself in responding to Washington County's latest saga. It seems now that Washington County Hospital has its new facility, the old hospital is making news.

In favor of a prompt demolition of the old hospital, Sharon Disque states, "16 acres immediately adjacent to downtown, this is an incredible opportunity." I ask where the silver lining is in that assumption.

I have lived in Washington County my entire life, long enough to know that sadly, but realistically, our downtown, like many others, fell victim to change. Prompt demolition will assure one thing though, which is a large vacant land parcel sprouting weeds, vagrants and riffraff that the people in that area have no need for.

The other thing prompt demolition would assure is that Johns Hopkins, University of Maryland Medical Center or other such institutions would have no chance in obtaining a move in-ready medical facility. I admit this is less than likely to be, but if it were, it would certainly be a major problem for Meritus.

Randy A. Breeden

Sheriff's office program a valuable experience

To the editor:

Two times a year, the Washington County Sheriff's Office holds an 11-week Citizens Law Enforcement Awareness Program. I had the distinct pleasure of attending the fall session for 2010, which was held on Tuesday evenings from October to December at the sheriff's office on Western Maryland Parkway.

If you have ever had questions about how this local law enforcement agency operates, I would highly recommend you look into attending the classes during one of the 2011 sessions.

These dedicated men and women go to work every shift exhibiting an unwavering commitment to ensure that where you and I live is a safe place for our families, our neighbors and visitors.

Following completion of the program, adult students are afforded an opportunity to decide whether or not they would like to ride along with a patrol officer.

I completed this portion of the program on a recent Saturday night by riding with a patrol officer from midnight to 4 a.m.

While the vast majority of the county slept, we traveled the interstates and the county's primary and secondary roads and streets through various towns in outlying places.

During the four-hour period, I was able to see firsthand the diversity in situations these law enforcement officers can be called upon to face on every shift they work.

From domestic disputes, fights, traffic stops, traffic accidents and helping a stranded person acquire transportation to a distant destination, the officer of the Washington County Sheriff's Office I had the privilege of riding with handled every situation in a professional manner.

We are fortunate and should never take for granted these men and women of law enforcement. They are the first to come when we call and we live with a level of increased security because of what they do every day.

Dale Williams
Washington County

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