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Letter to the Editor: Americans coming together

Tuesday, September 25, 2001

To the editor:

Dec. 7, 1941, a Sunday, was a tragedy that awoke a sleeping giant, the U.S.A. I was 15 years old at the time and didn't realize the implications that this day would bring. This meant war.

Many people today don't realize that World War II was a war for survival because we came very close to being dominated by a foreign country. Americans worked seven days a week, eight or 10 hours a day with only two holidays off per year. There were shortages of all kinds and rationing of many, many items that we take for granted today.

It goes without saying that Uncle Sam drained this country of young men 18 and older. The one and only thing on people's minds was the war effort and to get our loved ones home from overseas.

On Sept. 11, 2001, there was a terrible attack on this country, causing the destruction of the World Trade Center Complex in New York. The destruction was even greater than Pearl Harbor.

In past years, I had become somewhat disillusioned with the present-day society in this country, thinking that in case of a national tragedy like we just experienced, the people would not unite as they did in 1941. I was wrong. The people have come together and joined fellow Americans to go forward. My opinion of New Yorkers has been elevated, and I have shed many tears subsequently for the families who have lost loved ones.

It is such a warm feeling to see all the people show their patriotism to our great country with the numerous displays of Old Glory flying as a symbol of this land of freedom and the best lifestyle in the world. We are a spoiled people, and it's time to wake up and do our part. We must back our leaders, pray for them, pray that they will seek God's wisdom in their actions.

Even in view of this horrible tragedy, God may use it for some good, such as bring back those who have neglected Him in the past and maybe those who do not know the Lord.

I pray that I do not have to witness anything like this again in my lifetime. Twice is enough.

HELEN WILSON

Jackson, Mo.

Thanks for making sale a success

To the editor:

I wanted to use this forum to say a very heartfelt thank you to everyone in our region who helped make the Phi Kappa Phi National Honor Society Born to Read Garage Sale a phenomenal success. It was heartwarming to see so many people support our effort to promote literacy in the region.

For those unaware, Phi Kappa Phi Chapter 260, in cooperation with Southeast Missouri Hospital and St. Francis Medical Center, has been providing every baby born in 2001 with a Little Golden Book to take home. Numerous studies have shown that reading to a baby early in life yields a multitude of benefits later on. It is our hope that the book we provide will be the first of many each baby will have in his or her library.

On Sept. 15, we held a garage sale to raise money so we could continue buying books for babies for the rest of the year and through 2002. We raised $873.60, a total that exceeded our wildest dreams. The credit for this success goes to many people, too numerous to name. We want to thank everyone who donated their castoff treasures to be sold, everyone who came by and shopped, everyone who helped publicize the sale and everyone who stopped by just to make a donation. Your support enables us to continue to purchase books for the approximately 1,600 babies born here each year.TAMARA BALDWIN

Project chair

Cape Girardeau, Mo.