Remembering a special veteran
I remember growing up how my decorated Veteran daddy, Jimmy L. Riddle, would tell us stories about his Marine friends and the Vietnam War. Tears would fall with most stories and silence followed the rest.
My daddy often talked about the honor and bravery of our flag's stature. He spoke many times of constant survival. I remember thinking, " How could anyone go through this and not be angry, bitter or malice?" He had those feelings at one time or another, but the one he represented was freedom. He fought for freedom.
On Nov. 17, 2001, my daddy passed away.
This year I will not get to hug his neck and thank him personally for what he has done for my family, our country and me. So today in honor of my daddy and in contribute to all veterans, I wrote this poem.
Many years ago,
A cold war called for your soul.
A ride was given and a prayer was prayed,
Lord, protect this young man on his way,
Friends didn't make it through by your side,
But you stood with medals, pinned with pride.
Honoring all that was gained, remembering all that was loss,
You stood tall because of Calvary's cross,
His hands did lead and his words did guide,
Oh the joy Jesus has for sparing your life.
Looking back now I wish all could see,
How his truth has set you free.
Freedom bells ring within,
You are my daddy, my brother, and my friend.
What a gift, I wish all could see,
This special man belongs to me.
Filled with pride today I stand
Remembering you fought for this land.
So with your head lifted high, you can truly say,
" The Flag Still Waves,
For The Land Of The Free And The Home Of The Brave".
Selina Kay Riddle Ellis, Huntsville
Veterans deserve our thanks
As read at the HJHS Veterans Day Program.
Thank you for our freedom-what you did was very brave.
You set aside your dreams to give us our rights today.
You left all of your family to go fight an unbearable war.
You stood in honor of our nation to be of something more.
You risked your life for to make peace in the world today.
And I wish that I could tell you, but only words could not say.
You went into another country to which you've never been before,
And many lives were taken-everyday you miss them more.
I don't know how you feel or what you're thinking of,
But I know that our God in Heaven is watching over you from above.
So once again I thank you, Veteran, for your bravery to stand tall.
May God bring you many blessings and may God be with you all.
Hartselle Junior High School
Now is the time to work for city
Let me begin this letter by saying I'm grateful for many things in my life. I know to whom I, as a Christian, owe the most gratitude, and I thank Him daily.
I want to share my thoughts with the people of Hartselle. Our citizens have turned down the wet-dry referendum by a large margin, deciding to keep alcohol sales out of Hartselle, my hometown for the past 32 years.
Admittedly, I am personally pleased with this outcome. I'm pleased not only because of deeply held conviction but also because I was raised by an alcoholic father and understand the lingering effects of alcohol in the home and community.
I'm grateful that Hartselle will remain dry and to my fellow church-goers who rose up collectively to see that Hartselle's unique character and whole-
someness remain intact.
That being said, I am compelled to speak to that same community of believers on the issue of financing the needs of our community. Could Hartselle have put the "alcohol tax" to use?
Probably, but it would not have been a net gain because of the additional costs of dealing with the problems associated with increased public and private alcohol use. Can Hartselle survive on the sales tax base and meager property tax we pay?
I rather doubt it, at least not if we want our community to do something besides simply exist and put improvements in infrastructure, safety, and services on some "wish list" in a desk drawer at City Hall.
I contend that we, who in a large part as a church-going community, blocked the referendum, need to step up and be counted as a concerned body that can come together to provide a fiscal solution to not only sustain Hartselle's current needs but to improve it a bit as well. I firmly believe this is the least we can do. Does that mean working together toward a modest increase in our already minimal property tax? Periodic voluntary donations by citizens to a trust fund for special projects? There may be numerous ideas and solutions by those concerned.
I am especially grateful to Mayor Clif Knight for publicly and actively standing up with those of us that opposed the referendum. Are you grateful? Now it is time to stand with Mr. Knight and bring positive ideas and real life solutions to the table for betterment of our city and improved collective quality of life here in Hartselle.
Jeanette C. McAllister
To all those who voted 'no'…
To those who voted 'no' on Nov. 5, words cannot express my appreciation for all your hard work.
I never would have thought we would have the hundreds of volunteers we did. Thanks to those of you who made phone calls, knocked doors, put up yard signs, mailed letters and worked in the "Burma Shave" and contributed financially.
In the last several weeks, I have met some of the most wonderful people in the world and many new friends. I deeply appreciate your efforts.
However, the dry vote last week did not make the financial problems of the city go away. Mayor Knight informs us that the city's need for revenue is real. One of the reasons we voted 'no' Nov. 5 was because of the quality of life we enjoy in Hartselle. We did not want to see that change. We must realize that this quality of life does not come without a price. If we are to continue to enjoy this quality of life and services we have now, we must be willing to pay the price.
We voted 'no' because we could not conscientiously vote 'yes.' To use, the wet/dry referendum was a moral issue. Our vote 'no' should not mean we are against the growth and well being of our city. I want to encourage every one of us who voted 'no' to get behind our city council and mayor and support them. In the coming weeks and months the council and mayor will be sharing with us the city's five-year capital improvement plan. Through this improvement plan, they will share with us the needs of the city. To those of you who voted 'no' I ask you to seriously give the council and the mayor the support they need so we can all have a part in the future of this wonderful place we call home.
Ban on alcohol no solution
I recently read the news via the internet about the alcohol referendum.
Well, you people sure should be proud that the alcohol will stay out of Hartselle. But wait, even though the alcohol won't be sold in Hartselle we'll just go to the bottom of the mountain to the Conoco Station and buy whatever we want. I lived in Hartselle for almost five years. I attended the high school until the end of my junior year.
Alcohol wasn't sold in Hartselle, but that didn't stop the high school kids from going into Decatur and buying it anyway.
My point is, just because alcohol isn't sold in Hartselle, don't think that now there won't be problems with it.
Oh, and have fun paying the extra property taxes and other taxes.