TO LUKE, SOMEONE CARES

June 25, 2001 11:00 pm
AUTOGRAPHED HELMET: Luke Chrusoskie's new bicycle helmet bears the signatures of all the firefighters from the La Grande Fire Department, and the autograph of La Grande policeman Tony Barnett, who helps Chrusoskie tighten the straps on the helmet Monday. (The Observer/PHIL BULLOCK).
AUTOGRAPHED HELMET: Luke Chrusoskie's new bicycle helmet bears the signatures of all the firefighters from the La Grande Fire Department, and the autograph of La Grande policeman Tony Barnett, who helps Chrusoskie tighten the straps on the helmet Monday. (The Observer/PHIL BULLOCK).

By T.L. Petersen

Observer Staff Writer

I wanted Luke to know his community cares about Luke, Melissa Jackman said after going far out of her way for a neighborhood 10-year-old.

Luke Chrusoskie just finished third-grade at Riveria School, and like many 10-year-olds, relies on his bicycle for transportation and

entertainment.

But in May, Lukes bicycle-riding was nearly

disastrous.

The other day I almost hit a third-grade boy who was riding his bike and darted out in front of me. He was not wearing a helmet, Jackman wrote in a letter explaining what happened.

That letter was addressed to President George W. Bush, asking him to sign a bicycle helmet Jackman had purchased for Luke.

When the helmet came back from Washington unsigned in June, Jackman still thought it needed signing so that Luke would always know important people cared about his safety.

He had a little bit of an attitude, so I wanted to let a little boy know his safety matters, Jackman, who has six children of her own, said.

Jackman decided to go to the La Grande Fire Department and ask if firefighters would sign and deliver the helmet to Luke.

All the shift, and everybody upstairs (in the offices) signed it. And one guy was sick, so the others took it to him at home to sign, Lois Rieke, safety officer for the fire department.

La Grande police officer Tony Barnett, on hand for Mondays delivery, also signed the helmet.

The helmet was delivered, by firefighter express, Monday.

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