Editor: On May 25, I received phone calls from John Gallagher, Don Mangan and Roseann Webb that my boat was taking on water and soon to turn into a submarine. Thanks to their quick observance and concern to locate and call me, all within five minutes of each other, I was on my way to try to resurrect my boat from the depths. After many calls to friends, I finally realized that it was Memorial Day weekend. With all calls unanswered or put on the ever-popular answering machines, I set out on a one-hour venture to procure some apparatus to try to dry-dock my water zeppelin. Upon returning, to my pleasant surprise, my main squeeze Michelle informed me that the boat was being bailed out on higher ground. Darryl Mehuron, who was across the river mowing a lawn, a man I had never even seen before, jumped in, literally, and with the help of Dale Webb, had my vessel out of a severe danger zone.
This would be a great story of friendly concern, but it doesn't end there. Arlen Tillis saw me running my new bilge pump on overtime and together with John Grey, they put into action the "Grey Gator" and the "Just Good Friends." Within a couple of hours they pulled my boat (soon to be renamed) over to the "Grey Ghosts" launching pad, and drained her. They then were so concerned that they pulled my boat back to the Sims Park launching ramp and had me on my way to the boat doctor. All were sure to see to it that all symptoms be diagnosed and put back to recovery soon. Even Don and Nancy were put into action.
Thanks, neighbors, for going the extra mile, and jumping in to help a neighbor in distress. In a world of reading and watching dog eat dog, and damn the other guy, it's great to know there are still good neighbors without apathy.
New Port Richey
Woman thanks readers
for supporting husband
Editor: My thanks go out to the many readers and supporters of the St. Petersburg Times who have expressed both interest and concern for my family's legal situation in Pasco County.
The bogus, politically exploitive charges that were brought against my husband, Dennis Sobin, in February carry absolutely no proof and no victims.
My thoughts were well conveyed by one of your readers when he said, "Perhaps it's time for Bob Attridge (assistant state attorney) to drop his egotistical political game with him (Dennis Sobin) and admit to human error. . . this is truly a tragedy."
200 kept Pasco County
from mass burning trash
Editor: In April 1988, close to 200 residents of Pasco County attended the state environmental hearing in New Port Richey regarding the "mass burn" incinerator.
Those 200 were appalled that recycling had not been made a part of the overall solid waste solution for Pasco County.
From that day in April 1988 it became clear to those 200 that recycling was going to be a part of it. They were not going to tolerate a "mass burn" of all garbage. These 200 saw a vision of resources going up in smoke.
saw their children's children inheriting a not-so-natural world to live in.
Little did those 200 know that they were part of a groundswell of population realizing that something was definitely wrong and getting out of hand. Those 200 had to get involved politically. Those 200 had to get involved economically. Those 200 just plain had to get involved in what was happening outside their front door.
They did, and millions like them did all over the country.
Today, those 200 can be assured that they had a hand in what has transpired in the last three years regarding the solid waste integrated disposal system in not only their county, but also in their state and nation.
Those 200 played a large part in having Pasco County officials realize that "mass burn" was not the total solution. As a result of many factors, including those 200, a "blue bag" curbside recycling program will be implemented in the fall.
Pasco County is not going to "mass burn" its garbage. Pasco County residents now have the total option of whether to pollute their own air and water by what they choose to pitch into the burn barrel.
The blue bag concept is a beginning for us _ a start for us _ to utilize fully our intelligence in our buying, our saving, our conserving of resources, and our non-mass-burn mind-set.
Those original 200 can look forward someday to seeing the "mass burn" incinerator shrinking in importance and the new 30-ton-a-day recycling unit becoming the monstrous 1,050 ton-a-day resource recycler.
Those 200 can look forward to seeing the incinerator become the extinct-erator.
Those 200 can now network with 200 more to champion further the "recycle, don't burn" chant of that day in April 1988.
Those 200 saw 200 years of throw-away. Those 200 aren't going to take the next 200 years to recycle.
Betty S. Tillis
Exorbitant hospital bill
shows need for change
Editor: Recently, a local friend of mine had out-patient surgery at Bayonet Point/Hudson Regional Medical Center. At 3 p.m. on the day he was admitted by appointment he was operated on for a hernia repair. At 9 a.m. the next day he was released from the hospital. Shortly thereafter, he received a billing from the hospital for $3,900. The billing did not include a fee for the surgeon or the anesthetist, only the hospital bill.
My friend does not wish to quarrel with the hospital about the amount of his bill or protest for publication because he fears he might have to return to the hospital again and does not wish to incur the staff's wrath.
My letter is being written to add my voice to the many who feel that our "system" is in significant need of some sort of control. How can charges of such an amount be considered anything short of criminal? The Canadian program for national health insurance may have faults, but its advantages far outweigh our own approach to the problem.
Even child pranksters
Editor: I am writing in regard to the little boy who threw a can of sand and tore the screen on a neighbor's window.
I am a mother, a grandmother and a senior citizen. I raised a family, and my children did devilish things when they were growing up. (How about Halloween?) I also live in Park Lake Estates. I would like to ask the person who is pressing charges against the child what he did when he was a child and growing up. He must have been a saint.
Without a doubt, he must have come from a family that had no compassion.
How about Washington cutting down the cherry tree? These children are our future.
New Port Richey
Schools have bigger
problems than grading
Editor: This past week, I picked up the paper and read about a Pasco educator, with probably two or three degrees in education, standing up and saying our children's grading system is going to be changed. This is absolutely absurd. It staggers my imagination how with all the problems in our schools, such as teen-age pregnancy, teen-age dropouts, the possibility of larger classes, teacher layoffs and a 12-month school year, that valuable time was spent on such an unworthy cause.
All the children who grew up and traveled to the moon, designed cars that can travel 220 miles an hour in the Indy 500, and became school superintendents got by with the grades A, B and C. Why can't our children do the same?
Come on, people, let's use our heads, or you might receive a P, which means you are still in the process of learning.
Donald A. Cannoy
Cutting politicians' pay
would pay for free camp
Editor: I have an excellent suggestion as to how Commissioner Sylvia Young can cut the county budget to pay for the 1,200 children to go to camp free. She claims it will cost about $62,400. Well, here it is in simple arithmetic. Just reduce the five commissioners', and John Gallagher's and Walter Jones' salaries by $9,000. She will come up with $63,000, and she will not have to touch a penny of our property taxes. If she wants to be a good Samaritan, then let her go out and organize fund-raising activities and let those who want to pay for these kids, pay. But leave the poor taxpayers alone.
I almost can bet that of all the children who will be going to camp, there will probably be one-tenth whose parents pay no taxes at all. There is just too much free-loading in this county, and I am getting a little tired of my money paying for it.
in professors' memory
Editor: Just a few weeks ago, our community mourned the loss of Kevin W. Bowman and his daughter.
Kevin Bowman was an instructor of computer programing and analysis at Pasco-Hernando Community College for several years. For those of us who were fortunate enough to have attended his classes, we will always remember his unique approach to teaching. He offered challenging assignments while he rendered the appropriate level of encouragement to complete the task. Kevin was truly gifted in this respect, and will be greatly missed.
Because the effect of this loss was felt so strongly by so many who, like me, wanted to do "something more," the college established the Kevin Bowman Memorial Fund. This gives us the opportunity to keep his memory in perpetual existence. Please join me in sending your contribution to the college.
Carol S. King
New Port Richey