Much gratitude

Dear Editor:

The firefighters saved our house on Aug. 1. People I don’t even know risked everything to keep our home safe: firefighters in yellow shirts, and helicopters, and especially the Okanogan Fire District 6 folks who stayed while the fire burned through, and the pilots who hit the bull’s-eye on the flames up by our shop. Good work! Words cannot express this adequately. Thank you is too little. I well up with gratitude when I think of them. We are so fortunate to still have our home.

Ken Bevis, Twisp

And more thanks

Dear Editor:

There are many people and organizations which deserve and have received our thanks during the recent firestorm. I would like to thank Duane and Craig of CenturyLink. When the power goes out, the equipment in the offices is powered by batteries which eventually run down and need to be recharged. Generators are used for that purpose and Duane and Craig spent hours early in the morning to late at night, driving up and down the valley from Lost River to Libby Creek refueling generators so we had use of the land lines.

Nancy Dicus, Twisp

Heroic efforts

Dear Editor:

Thanks to the heroic efforts of volunteer and government firefighters on the ground, and the amazing aerial support from Bill Moody’s team, my residence up Signal Hill Road still stands, amidst a sea of charcoal. I am humbled and amazed at the dedication, persistence and incredible work put out by so many people in this ongoing tragedy of flame. My “thank yous” are inadequate to express my deepest gratitude and admiration to all those involved, risking their lives, not only to save my place, but in battling on behalf of all those whose lives they have touched.

As an American taxpayer I am so proud of what our government agencies, at all levels from local to national, manage to do on ever shrinking budgets. So many homes have been saved — think of how many more, perhaps, could have been saved if they had more resources. Yes, huge resources are being devoted to these western fires, but it is robbing Peter to pay Paul. As a small example, many of our trails are impassible as the U.S. Forest Service maintenance budget is squeezed to free up money to fight fires. People who whine about “taxes” and want to “starve the beast” should reflect on how dependent we really are on government having enough resources to come to the aid of each one of us in times like these.

Yes, we do what we can for ourselves, for our neighbors and for our community. But your head is in the sand if you do not realize that “we” do not prosper without a vigorous and prosperous government on the front lines for us all. I am proud of what our government does for us and proud to pay my taxes — I hope all in this valley will join in that pride.

Kathleen Learned, Twisp