Helicopters would hurt economy
To the Editor:
I am writing to oppose the helicopter training program proposed by the Joint Base Lewis-McChord to take place in areas around the Methow Valley. With all the wildfires in the last two years, our economy has suffered enough already! We really don’t need any more detractions from our primary product — offering a place of peace and quiet for people to re-connect with nature.
As a small tourism-based business owner, we have lost a significant chunk of our annual income this year due to fire-related cancellations. We need to be encouraging people to come back to this area, not creating more reasons for them to go somewhere else. And when our economy suffers, there is less money passed on from us to the Department of Revenue, so it also affects the whole state in the end.
Beyond the basic economic impact, there are also the greater environmental issues. It is foolish at this point to ignore the connection between climate change and the rampant wildfires we’ve been experiencing. It’s time to move beyond internal combustion engines, we really should be focusing on cutting our emissions, not adding to them! It’s also time to move beyond the paradigm of war — why is the U.S. Army still in Afghanistan anyway? Several times recently I have heard parents telling their upset children to “use their words” instead of acting out. Can’t we, as a nation of adults, also learn to “use our words?”
If there was no need to fly around Afghanistan, there would be no need for training, we could take the money saved and put it to planting trees to replace all those that have been lost. Trees take up carbon dioxide and produce oxygen — we need them now more than ever! Some people may say that’s impossible, but it was done before, as a stimulus after the Depression. If enough of us hold the vision, it could be possible again!
Lindsey Swope, Carlton
Thanks for the help
Okanogan County Fire District 6 volunteers and families enjoyed a peaceful tone-free, text message-free, phone-free day off last Sunday. After days of 18- to 20-hour fire suppression work, the down time was so appreciated! All four District 6 stations were manned by out-of-district personnel who volunteered their time to give firefighters the opportunity to attend the fallen firefighters memorial service in Wenatchee, or to simply relax and enjoy a quiet day at home. Our gratitude extends to the City of Spokane Fire Department, Spokane County Fire District, Chelan County Fire District 3, Chelan County Fire District 6, Cashmere Fire Department, Snohomish County Fire District 1, and Woodinville Fire Department.
Fire District 6 families thank you!
Eileen Owen, Winthrop
Nancy Soriano (letters to the editor, Sept. 2) is exactly correct. When we owned a home in the valley, we were just outside the boundaries of Okanogan County Fire District 6. It took a long time to get enough organization to get a sufficient number of people to submit applications for annexation into the district. It meant an increase in property taxes, but it was well worth it. It made the house more valuable, more likely to sell (a bank could make a loan, knowing there was fire insurance) and the peace of mind was great. Nobody, of course, saw the Carlton Complex Fire coming, and nothing could be done about that, but all in all it was worth it. The District 6 staff and commissioners were all helpful and patient in the process.
Bernard and Nancy Ryan, Las Cruces, New Mexico
Alzheimer’s articles appreciated
This is to thank the Methow Valley News; your reporter, Laurelle Walsh; Katie and Josephine Bristol; and Dr. Raleigh Bowden, for your enlightening columns about living with Alzheimer’s disease written by Don Reddington with his wife, Ginger, and their friend Jerry Bristol.
As a health insurance agent of many years I see, more than most people, how Alzheimer’s impacts families. It brings out the best in a family, and sometimes, due to lack of understanding about the disease, the worst. I am blessed to have read these articles in the Methow Valley News from the beginning. I also am deeply pleased to see the Wenatchee World publishing the columns because the more people who read and understand how Alzheimer’s affects a person and his/her family the more understanding and compassionate we can be.
My wonderful mother-in-law passed away from Alzheimer’s years ago so I am doubly touched when I read the columns because I recall how my loving father-in-law and other family members worked to understand the disease’s progression and loved her no matter what her behavior was. We did the best we could, but more knowledge would have been helpful.
My hope is that these columns can be gathered into a book and published to help others understand this disease. The Aging and Adult Care office in East Wenatchee offers regular workshops on understanding Alzheimer’s. Contact them at (800) 572-4459. Additionally, The Alzheimer’s Association has a 24-hour helpline at (800) 272-3900, which offers insight and support. I appreciate everyone’s courage in publishing these columns.
Gaylen Willett, Chelan