Del Norte Triplicate Readers

Memories of Bobby Rice at Relay for Life event

Sometimes a brief snapshot can give you a measure of the color and depth of a life and how it shined. So it was with me and Bobby Rice on a Saturday night last July.

I was hobbling the high school track at the annual Relay For Life celebration on crutches with a torn MCL. It was several hours after sundown and the evening chill had set in. As I tried to knock out a few miles in my Mom's memory, somewhere between my knee, missing my Mom and dwelling on some recent bumps in the road of my life, I got into one of those places where the rags of time are weighing kind of heavy.

It was in that frame of mind I found myself when all of a sudden I heard, "You better slow down Hopalong, you're gonna burn up the track," and turned to see Bobby Rice.He came up and put his hand on my shoulder, looked me in the eye and asked how I was doing. I told him I was managing and was having a talk with my Mom, who I mentioned had brought me to this place seven years before, when she was passing up in Brookings. Bobby pointed out at all the people walking the track, silhouetted by the light and spirit of the luminaria, and asked me if I knew what kind of gift my Mom had given me in bringing me to this place. I told him I did.

He told me what a great place this was, how the people looked out for each other and what a "sense of community," his words, there was in this small county. He talked a while longer about how much he loved this place and its people and then said he was going to leave me with Mom and go up around the bend.

It was one of those times when you needed a shot in the arm and a reason to believe, and Bobby Rice gave them to me that night.

I sat with several hundred people Saturday afternoon at the Cornerstone Church as we said goodbye to Bobby, and I'd bet you there wasn't a handful he hadn't picked up along the way sometime or another, giving them a shot in the arm when they needed one. Not a bad legacy for a life well lived.

We'll see you up around the bend, Bobby.

Jon Alexander, Crescent City

Editor's note: Jon Alexander is Del Norte County district attorney.

Why do Wilson, Gitlin want to retain dams?

Removing the four Klamath dams "will produce a big increase in salmon harvests and boost farm revenues," federal scientists declare in a 400-page report ("Report: If dams go, fish thrive," Feb. 5).

Some time ago, Pacific Power asserted dam removal would lower ratepayers' bills.

So why do Sheriff Dean Wilson, Supervisor Roger Gitlin and the Tea Party want to retain the dams? It is well past time for these worthies to acquaint the rest of us with their thinking on this matter.

I used the term "thinking" loosely. Who are these people working for?

Joe Barnwell, Crescent City

Our anti-gun leader giving country to communists

You people are suppose to work together for the people. Who's going to pay you when we all quit working?

Well, you politicians act like you have no job. What changes have you made during your term?

Why disarm the people from their guns all of a sudden? Are you all going to start a war within our own country? Well that's what your leader is doing.

Our Constitution has been destroyed by the rich who actually run this country. This leader is out to give our country to the communists, which is already in the process.

People, help.

Frank Bruder, Crescent City

Why is jetty different thanbeaches? Close them too?

In response to Malinda Sarbacker-Wiley's Feb. 2 Coastal Voices piece, "Things to consider about jetty access,"don't worry, the way the world is today I'm sure the jetty will be closed and you will get your wish, even though the majority of us don't want it closed.

But I have a question for you and everyone else that feels like you do. Recently there have been quite a few people swept into the ocean and drowned here in the Northwest. Many more than have been swept off of our jetty. Should we close the beaches?

I know, I know, it's not the same thing you say! Isn't it? Why is it different? Because more people walk on the beach than the jetty? Because the beaches cover many. many miles and it couldn't be enforced? It would still be the law.

Just think about it. If we could save just one life by closing the beaches wouldn't it be worth it? Like you said in regard to closing the jetty, I if we as a community decide to not allow anyone on our beaches we could potentially save the lives of those who would otherwise be swept in during times of rough seas!

Now do you understand where I'm coming from? Maybe some of us enjoy walking on the jetty as much as you enjoy walking on the beach! Why should I have to be kept from doing something while you aren't?

All of these accidents are caused by poor judgment. All require rescue personnel to be used. Where does common sense precede over-regulation and more stupid laws telling us what we can and can't do for the better of the few that don't use common sense.

The one good thing you brought up is the city and county and government resources that are used. Not only in danger, but cost. If the city or county wants to charge for responding to fires and traffic accidents, then charge for the cost of rescuing someone off the jetty!

Mike Cuthbertson, Gasquet

'Neighbors' on hospital board still ignoring us

I cannot understand how the Sutter Coast Hospital Board Members continue to meet in secret and ignore all the local expression of opposition to the regionalization of the hospital.

How is it that these people who are our supposedly our "friends and neighbors" continue to ignore us? Will they please avail themselves to a forum where they can express themselves? Since they feel they know what's best for us, will they please explain so that we may understand? There are over 2,500 persons who have signed the petition.

I believe Andy Ringgold was the only member who attended the meeting at Crescent Elk. Why are the rest of you hiding, and by what authority were you designated to "represent" us? When will you face us and listen to our concerns?

Enough is enough!

Calie Martin, Crescent City