Letters to the editor

Nov. 19, 2013 @ 08:33 PM

Do veterans matter in Stem?

Now that the elections are over and Veterans Day is behind, it is time to reflect. During the campaign certain Stem candidates stated that American flags would be placed on telephone poles, once again on the streets of Stem. Thank you!!

However, that seems to be the extent of the Stem Town Board’s support of veterans. Where were any of the elected officials from Stem at the Town of Butner Veterans Day event? They were absent. Not only were Butner Town Council members present, so were town commissioners-elect from Creedmoor, one outgoing Oxford city commissioner, the mayor of Oxford and at least two county commissioners. No Stem officials.

Why should they be present -- the campaign is over. Plus, none has ever defended freedom, so they have no connection or desire to support veterans. After all, the American flag above the Stem Town Hall is torn and the blue field is faded, and the mayor and at least two Stem commissioners are aware. To make matters worse, what do any Stem Officials know about American flags? Only one current elected official has an American Flag in his yard. However, it is a total disgrace, as it torn in four places and needs to be retired. Just drive up Old 75 and look.

Is this how the Stem town officials see veterans -- torn, old and ready to retire? Seems so. The election is over.

Kevin  A. Rumsey

‘Shelter Stories’ inspire adoptions

I’d like to thank the paper for running the comic Mutts, especially Nov. 3rd – Nov. 9th.   The author, Patrick McDonnell has given us a series of cartoons in which he points out the plight of the many adoptable animals in shelters. 

Appearing bi-annually, these are known as Shelter Stories.  Usually he features dogs and cats, but this time the characters are all “pocket pets,” consisting of guinea pigs, a hamster, birds, a rabbit, and even a rat.  These pen-and-ink animals speak directly to the reader.  Each animal voices a plea, giving a heartfelt opinion as to why people should come to the shelter and adopt them.  People should be aware animals in the shelters do face a real countdown to either death or adoption.  Few private rescue groups are available for these smaller abandoned animals.  If you have a desire to get a smaller lifelong companion or do not have space for a dog or cat, please consider them.

Please go to www.petfinder.com and search “small & furry” to learn more about small animals in your area, or call your local animal shelter.  You will be amazed at the number of dogs and cat on their website.  Adopt from them or help if you can with a contribution of money or time to a shelter or the rescue organization of your choice. To do so would put a smile on the face of a deserving animal, plus giving the plight of these sad-faced cartoons a living, happy ending.

Cindy Geiger


Thanks for helping state retirees

For the first time since my retirement in 2005, state retirees had the difficult decision of choosing one of three healthcare plans offered by the state.  We had a choice of the 70/30 State plan, Humana Advantage or United Advantage Plan.  

Most of us were confused about which plan to chose, particularly, those of us who had previously been warned about advantage plans.  Although, the state provided information sessions in many counties, we were still confused.  To add to the confusion, the state assigned each retiree to one of the advantage plans.  However, we were told that we could switch plans.

Before our deadline to choose a plan, I was blessed to receive a one-page information sheet which compared all of the plans.  Having the plans compared on one sheet made it simple to choose a healthcare plan best suited for me.  I received that valuable information from Gina Upchurch, director of Senior PharmAssist. Question: I wondered why those sheets were not provided to retirees even at State information sessions?

Kudos to Upchurch for the help she provided to me, members of the AARP Durham Chapter and  all others with whom  I shared that information.  Upchurch and Senior PharmAssist are invaluable to the Durham community. 

Helen Featherson ,  President