Many of us watched Larry the Cable Guy interview local citizens as they described the moonshine and car-racing part of Dawson County’s heritage on his “Only in America” series on the History channel. Then as I perused the pages of our weekly newspapers, I was very much aware that, just as those early residents did what they had to do in order to make it through a great depression, so are today’s residents getting things done in their own way. I want to salute a few, but there’s no way to cover them all.
As I write these words (Friday), the people of Egypt are making history, knowing that their present euphoria must quickly move into the difficult tasks of hammering out a workable government. We who are fortunate to live in a nation that has done, and continues to do, those difficult tasks know that many things that contribute to our quality of life must be done by us as individuals and not just by government.
So I salute our United Way for actually making its goal so that it can help finance a number of wonderful organizations that add to the quality of life in our county.
Thank you, Jay Sessions and team — and all who contribute. Mark Weaver would indeed be proud. And to another Jay (Walker) — thanks for once again being chairman of the Cancer Society’s Relay for Life and to those who will make up the teams for that fundraiser.
Our school system once again receives congratulations for an excellent report from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools after their evaluation. Having been on both sides of those evaluations, I know that it is a laborious, but rewarding, experience. The real labor, however, was by the teachers, staff and students.
The Dawson County Chamber of Commerce’s annual Gala highlighted many successes and honored a number of people. I particularly want to congratulate Bill Sexton as Volunteer of the Year because for years I have watched him put up and take down those crosses and flags that line our streets to memorialize our veterans. Best wishes to those who take on the chamber’s mantle of leadership for the coming year; you follow in the footsteps of many who have worked hard to pave the way.
I must also salute my friend the Rev. Thomas Are (he is a retired minister) who bravely wrote an open letter backing Bette Holland’s stand on a number of issues. Although recognizing that he is in the minority in Dawson County, he was willing to remind us of the admonitions of Jesus concerning our Christian responsibilities and even to admit that he would “seek to include those who have been left out, even if it means increasing my taxes.” How many would say that?
By the time you read this, Valentine’s Day will be over. I hope yours was a happy one, whether it was with the Humane Society’s Puppy Love party or your church or school or individual celebration. Sharing a celebration of affection can never be a bad thing, even better when one is also contributing to good causes.
Some of you can continue to contribute to a good cause if you will “take a leap for literacy” on Feb. 19 and jump into the lake at Thompson Creek Park. Just find a sponsor (or sponsor yourself) who will donate to WEE Books if you take a plunge, wade, or even dip a toe into the frigid water (varying amounts, of course). And pre-school children will receive books.
There is certainly no shortage of “things to get done.” Kudos to the ones who are doing them.
Helen Taylor’s column appears periodically in the Dawson Community News.