Letters to the Editor - Feb. 10

February 10, 2012

Hospice says thanks to its many donors

To the editor:

February is the month for love, and Hospice of Washington County is showing some love to its donors. All donors will receive a special thank-you letter and discount card good at the new Treasured Memories Gift Shop in the lobby of Hospice of Washington County.

Donors who gave $1,000 or more in 2011 will each receive a heart-shaped box filled with goodies, and donors who gave $5,000 or more in 2011 will each receive chocolates and a dozen roses.

All employees of Hospice of Washington County who have donated will receive a Hospice of Washington County ice scraper for their car. 

Thanks to the generosity of our donors and their confidence in our mission, we are able to provide quality end-of-life care to all of our friends and neighbors in Washington County in need of this service. We also provide grief and bereavement services, at no cost, to all members of our community who are suffering from a life-changing loss. We thank our donors from the bottom of our hearts for helping to make this possible.

Hospice of Washington County has been serving the residents of Washington County for 31 years. It is the only licensed hospice authorized to provide hospice care in Washington County. If you or someone you know is in need of quality end-of-life care, call the office at 301-791-6360. Staff are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Cheryl Brown, development director
Hospice of Washington County

Romney’s faith still a hurdle for some

To the editor:

What’s wrong with some people?

Despite long-held prejudices, any policy differences we ultimately had with Catholic John Kennedy, divorced Ronald Reagan or our first black president, Barack Obama, had nothing to do with religion, divorce or skin color.

Now we have Mitt Romney, the Mormon. By any objective measure, he’s the most qualified Republican candidate. Yet voters have been grasping at every pitchman, liar, ding-a-ling, egomaniac, simpleton and hypocrite alternative who’s come along ... and gone. Because “Mormon” hasn’t cleared the hurdle, remaining a barrier for some.

“We’re Conservative So We Vote Republican” screams a billboard along I-77 in South Carolina. But neither Conservative nor Republican are what they once were.

World War II general and two-term President Dwight Eisenhower was courted by both parties and chose Republicans, citing reasons that today would clearly make him a Democrat!

Newt Gingrich, a Catholic, twice-divorced, congressionally reprimanded egomaniac, would seem a joke. But in the South Carolina primary, he was white and not a Mormon!

For some, a Catholic, a divorcee or a black was once unthinkable as president. That the Bush-Cheney disaster resulted in a black president still confounds some folks. As Sen. Mitch McConnell said, congressional Republicans’ main agenda is not working for America, but “making sure Obama is a one-term president.”

Meanwhile, Republicans will nominate someone — a twice-divorced Catholic or perhaps a Mormon after all.

And with our knowledge of history and sense of America’s future, we know that we’ll eventually elect a woman, a gay, an Asian-American, Jew, Muslim, Hispanic and other leaders some never thought possible.

And just as America has improved under President Obama — albeit not as quickly as some had hoped — we’ll likely all be better for it.

For what, really, is wrong with some people?

Paul Politis
Greencastle, Pa.

Blood donation serves a variety of patients

To the editor:

Every two seconds, someone in our country needs a blood transfusion.

Like the emergency room of a hospital, the American Red Cross needs to be prepared to respond to patient emergencies 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year. Right here in the Greater Alleghenies Blood Services Region, the Red Cross must collect approximately 5,000 blood and platelet donations each week to meet the everyday needs of patients at area hospitals.

Who receives the blood products so generously donated by Red Cross blood donors?

About 18 percent of blood products are transfused to patients undergoing care for cancer, including leukemia and lymphoma. Patients experiencing gastrointestinal blood loss unrelated to cancer receive approximately 15 percent of blood products. Those undergoing orthopedic or urological surgery receive about 14 percent of blood products. Two groups — those undergoing other surgeries and those with anemia other than cancer-related — each receive 13 percent of transfusions. Trauma patients receive approximately 12 percent of blood products and cardiac care patients receive 11 percent.

Each day approximately 44,000 units of blood must be donated to meet such needs experienced by patients in the United States.

For additional information about blood donation or to make a donor appointment, call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or visit

John B. Nobiletti, medical director
American Red Cross Blood Services

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