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No basis for attack on character

Editor: In response to the letter by John Renke, I also read the attempted character assassination of Ed Collins by Barbara Fredricksen on June 1.

Planning to respond myself then, I read the article over to see what argument she presented to support her allegations, before putting pen in hand. And you know, there was none! There was not one paragraph, not one sentence, not one word to support her vicious charges. She, in her elaborate, though somewhat overly dramatic presentation, produced not one fact to confirm, not one shred of evidence to support her accusations. It then became clear to me that this was nothing more, nothing less, than a liberal editorialist doing her best to damage the political career of a man she politically disagrees with.

My point is, Mr. Renke, and I know I've never met you or Ed Collins for that matter, and I don't want to sound patronizing, but don't you agree that we're giving more credibility and attention to Barbara Fredricksen's editorial than it deserves?

The only statement that Ms. Fredricksen made that had any credibility to it was that Ed Collins led the tax freeze in 1992 _ a year when she said a tax increase was much needed. His vote on this freeze and his leadership displayed in getting it passed are the reasons and the only reasons why she went after this man so viciously in her acrimonious editorial. And that's that!

John J. Monks,

Pasco County

River Ridge's first graduates

vow to make their mark

Editor: So that's it. It's over, really over. Two wonderful years at River Ridge have come to an end.

Graduation is approaching, and the memories are coming back. All the times that have passed are being re-lived, even as future adventures are anticipated. Thoughts of football games with the pals, parties at the beach and special times with the ones we love are filling our minds and feeding our memories. Those times are over, so what comes next?

Some may say that the real world will hurt, but the Royal Knights know differently. Being taught in a school full of knowledge, pride and perseverance has pointed us toward the future.

Being a member of the first graduating class of River Ridge High School is not only a pleasure, but an honor as well. To be the first students to set the trends and traditions for the future classes has been very exciting. The memories we've made for ourselves and others will always remain. As seniors, we've gotten the chance to say how we feel and change what we disagree with. We have truly had the chance to mold our school.

Walking through the halls, knowing how the community sees our school brings a certain pride to the campus. The seniors' respect for the school shines through all their help and appreciation. Everyone has gathered together to make this first graduation the best possible.

But as we leave this stage, another is upon us.

Sure the thought of entering the "real world" is scary, but it is also exciting. To know that all the knowledge we have gained over the past years is going to really help us is comforting. The time teachers gave, the advice they shared and the questions they asked will all come into play as our future unfolds. Being a Royal Knight has been everything we expected, and more.

The chances we were given at River Ridge offered the seniors much more than many other academic environments. Not only is the campus beautiful and the equipment new, but the teachers are exceptional.

The ability of a teacher is best seen in the graduate, and the 200 graduates at River Ridge shine, not only from knowledge but from understanding and dedication, as well.

The older generation tends to blame the younger for the troubles of today. This generation will be different. We strive to be those who are responsible for the advances of tomorrow. Rather than being the butt of a joke, we will be the hands and minds of the future.

Whether it's with technology, biology, economics or art, the graduates of our time have vowed to be remembered. The River Ridge class of 1993 cannot be forgotten, we are "first" class.

Melissa Devaux,

River Ridge Class of 1993

Robert L. Gipson has served

Port Richey and its people well

Editor: As an elected city official of the city of Port Richey, I take serious umbrage at your paper's unconscionable and most reprehensible diatribe against Robert L. Gipson. I am well aware of Mr. Gipson's background. I respect him for what he has accomplished in spite of it. This man, whom you so unrighteously castigate, is unquestionably one of the most civic-minded members of our community. Whenever he is called upon to perform a community service, he graciously accepts the assignment.

Bob Gipson has served as president of the Citizens Association of Port Richey; has been a member of the Board of Adjustment in Port Richey for over five years; is a hard-working, dedicated member of the Citizen's Advisory Committee for the Revision of Ordinances; is the author and cartographer of the 1993 Port Richey Community Map and Guide; is the editor and publisher of the official city of Port Richey newsletter; and last, but not least, he is currently serving as parliamentarian to the Port Richey City Council, a temporary assignment decided upon by our mayor and approved by the council.

Bob Gipson did not volunteer for any of the above assignments. In each case his services were requested. He receives no remuneration whatsoever. Certainly, the least we can do for citizen Gipson is to thank him for his contributions to our community. And certainly the least a newspaper can do that purports to serve the best interests of the communities it serves is to accord such a citizen the dignity of a public acknowledgement.

Shame on your newspaper and shame on messieurs Larry Dougherty and Jan Glidewell! O tempora! O mores!

William D. Wilson,

Councilman,

City of Port Richey

The Bill DiCola story was

thorough and compassionate

Editor: As the mother of Bill DiCola, I am writing regarding Jim Carson's very thorough and compassionate story in Sunday's Pasco Times.

Except for telephone conversations to Bayfront Hospital, we never met. Yet, his very detailed description of Bill's high school activities and his near-fatal accident is remarkable reporting.

It's a long road ahead for Bill, but the many prayers of friends, teachers, co-workers, all those who know Bill are much appreciated. We know he will "Never Give In."

We are indeed indebted to Jim for this sad, but true story.

One last word to all parents. Do not allow a child to ride a bicycle unless he is wearing a helmet.

Robin Falzone,

Port Richey

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