Please return patches
We were saddened recently to discover two patches were stolen from the Robert Van Klinken memorial located in the Methow Valley Community Center. We hope to educate the person(s) who thought they could take them, and encourage you to bring them back to the community center so they can be replaced. No questions asked.
First, one of our own, a young man from Poorman Creek, wore these patches on his jacket as he fought and died serving our country. Robert Van Klinken graduated from the Twisp School in 1939. He is remembered locally and honored in the book and film “Band of Brothers.” He is buried in the Netherlands with more than 8,000 other soldiers who fought and saved the world from Nazi Germany. I encourage anyone to learn more about Mr. Van Klinken by visiting the Twisp library archives. You will be moved to know that these graves and servicemen are still honored today through a program where decedents of the Dutch survivors have adopted a serviceman and tend the grave, attend ceremonies, and pass this honor to their children.
So, you can see that we are talking about more than just a patch or two. We are talking about honoring and respecting a local veteran.
I hope this letter will be been helpful in educating the person who took them. Please do the right thing and return them to their place of honor.
Methow Valley Community Center
The Methow in action
I was badly injured in the Ski to Sun Marathon race Feb 12. I fell on one of the icy patches and badly fractured my right hip. It was terribly painful and scary to be completely immobilized in the snow in the shade miles from the nearest road. Practically every skier who passed by stopped to check on me, and offer words of encouragement. One, Dr. Z (I can’t remember his full name), stopped and stayed with me for the full two hours it took for Aero Methow Rescue to reach me. It is difficult to convey how much he helped to keep my spirits up as I got colder, the pain got worse, and the wait got longer.
While waiting, Steph and another person I think from Methow Trails showed up with a heated blanket and big smiles to warm my body and my spirits. A couple of warm smiles and a heated blanket never felt so good.
Eventually Aero Methow showed up, and I am sorry I can’t remember the crew’s names, because it was quite a project getting me, a 170-pound man, onto an inflatable full body splint, into the mini-CAT, down to the road, transferred to the ambulance and off to Mid-Valley Hospital. Their efforts to get me the heck out of there as quickly as possible, while minimizing my pain, and stabilizing my injury, felt miraculous. I really have no idea how they did it.
Once at Mid-Valley, the trend continued: Excellent care, from managing my pain, to round-the-clock support, to hip replacement surgery. Again my expectations were exceeded at every turn. Wow! I felt lucky to be there!
I have been a part-time resident in the Methow since the early 1990s, and felt I had a good sense of and appreciation for the strength of this community. But that Saturday, while being a nightmare I would just as soon forget, also became my most precious memory of the magic of the Methow in action. It really says something about a community, when without exception, everyone made a complete stranger feel as if he was a close, close friend with a medical emergency.