September 24, 2003 11:00 pm

Store's parking lot full

To the Editor:

There has been a lot in the local news of late how La Grande is going to dry up and blow away if Wal-Mart builds a super store.

A lot of this noise comes from the local officials who have various vested interests with no desire to advance beyond the country store complex.

Strange as it may be, you meet the very people who expound the loudest against Wal-Mart while shopping at Wal-Mart. Now if I were dead set against Wal-Mart, I would not be seen in the place.

As you go down the Island City strip and look at the parking lots, you will find that Wal-Mart's lot is always full. If there is such a community dislike for this store, why do I see cars from La Grande, Elgin, Wallowa, North Powder and even Baker parked there?

The loyalty of the ruling class was adequately demonstrated when the city council purchased the hole in the ground after the insurance money went to Baker City "where there was more opportunity," leaving the city a $77,000 clean-up of a white elephant that still needs feeding.

More of my expendable money will stay in La Grande if I pay $1.95 at Wal-Mart rather than $5.98 to a local. Wal-Mart hires people, too.

David Arnott


Lights have special meaning

To the Editor:

I address this letter to the person or persons who took the solar-panel lights from my wife's grave at the Elgin Cemetery, and also from two other graves.

These lights were put there for a token of our love for our loved ones, and it was our desire that they would be left there undisturbed.

I know you think you did an act of bravado to show your friends how great you are, but it would show a greater act of bravado if you would return them to the place where you removed them.

I know I would appreciate that act, and I know the other two whom you took the lights from their graves would be also. Just put them back.

Clayton R. Breckon


Salute to vector control

To the Editor:

As summer comes to a close it is time to reflect on some happenings. It brings to mind the excellent job vector control did this past summer.

We have lived in the Hot Lake area for 47 years. We understand neighbors to the east of the Fish and Wildlife area are not allowed to do any mosquito control on their property.

The mosquito control was better than ever in past years, finally approaching it in the right direction, and they have permission to come on our property any time day or night.

In the past we felt our tax money was wasted. Thanks for a job well done.

Hazel Hawkins

Union County

Trucks not over regulated

To the Editor:

In response to Randall Driskell's letter of Sept. 3 in The Observer, in which he feels split speeds for truckers are not needed, he also expressed his opinion that the trucking industry is over regulated.

They should be. Not many truckers now obey the speed limits.

In my opinion they are the most rude and dangerous drivers on the road. They pull from an intersection right in front of traffic when they feel they have sat at a stop long enough. They will change lanes at any time no matter if a vehicle is approaching. A drive down Island Avenue proves this to be common, or out by the truck stop.

Trucks are the most polluting vehicles and the most wasting of fuel. Again, regulation is a must. They also do the most damage to the roadway, causing expensive maintenance of the roads.

One tradeoff by letting them drive faster is maybe they would get to their destination faster so they could relieve themselves instead of leaving their nasty bottles of urine all over the countryside.

Roger Morin

La Grande

Village comes through

To the Editor:

On Sept. 6 our son had an accident on his bike at the corner of Oak and Washington. A couple in a car stopped to help and returned his bike to the babysitter's house. Another good Samaritan stopped on his bike and carried our son to the babysitter. It's nice to see people willing to help a young person in need.

As to our son's injuries, he is fine. I took him to the ER and he had his face cleaned out, rocks removed and a CT scan. All is well. He is home for a few days and there is no permanent damage. Emmitt will be fine thanks to the help of others.

As has been said, it takes a village to raise a child, and we appreciate the village we live in.

The Amberts

La Grande

Family needs help

To the Editor:

What happens when we die? I don't mean spiritually. I mean everything it means for your family, the ones who have loved you your whole life. They will be left with all the bills and costs of either burying you or cremating you — the costs of the services, the place to have the service, the food that everyone will eat after the service. All the details that will go into organizing such an event, and so much more that I have left out. Oh, and did I mention the grieving that is happening as you are doing all these things?

Also, the home of the loved one has to be taken care of, every thing gone through and cleaned. Bills have to be taken care. How overwhelming for anyone, even the strongest person. You find out who your friends really are and hold up the ones who can't deal with the loss.

Suppose this was your oldest daughter — all the time thinking moms are supposed to die before their children. The cost itself is huge. If you have the money some of the burden is lifted. But suppose you were in your 60s, on Social Security, taking care of your own mother — who has Alzheimer's — 24 hours a day. No money to cremate your oldest child or even have a service. What happens then? You would think there is some help out there.

But there are no funds available to help. So your child's body stays in a freezer.

After 10 days if know one claims the body, the state will step in. It costs between $1,500 and $2,000 to cremate someone. In the meantime my friend, Gina Campbell Lee, who died Sept. 5 at age 41, is just laying in the freezer.

Her mother, who is also my friend, is haunted by the thought of her daughter laying in the morgue. To see her in so much grief breaks my heart. She wants to claim her daughter and keep her ashes and have a service to remember a dear daughter and wonderful friend, but she doesn't have the money. Closure and saying goodbye are so important.

This is something most of us don't think about, but it is a reality. I don't care who you are, everyone deserves to have that closure and to be treated with respect as if you were someone while you lived on this earth.

Any help would be appreciated. I'll be setting up donations jars around town. If you can help, I can be reached at 663-0677 or 910-2562.

Terry Curtiss

La Grande