June 26, 2016

Intermittent clouds

Cheers & Chidings

CHEERS: to the 125 fifth-graders at Medina’s H.G. Blake Elementary School who turned old, donated wooden chairs into works of art to be auctioned today in a fundraiser. Students transformed 30 chairs into themed creations using paint, foam cutouts, buckeyes and more. Proceeds will go to Kikititi Secondary School in Tanzania and pay tuition, room, board and uniform costs for a student to attend junior high school there.

CHEERS: to Brunswick’s Ken Dudas, 50, for earning Scouting’s highest honor 30 years after completing his Eagle project. In 1976, just as Dudas was leading a group of volunteers in a three-week project to clean the ornate walls of St. Colman Parish Chapel in Cleveland, his Scout troop disbanded. It was at a troop reunion in 2007 that Scout Executive Kendrick Miller heard the story and helped set the wheels in motion for Dudas to receive his long-awaited honor.

CHEERS: to Medina resident Stephanie Sizemore for sharing her struggle with an eating disorder and trying to help others receive treatment as part of Eating Disorder Awareness Week. Sizemore said she used to weigh herself up to 30 times per day. “Society today, there’s so much focus on appearance for young people and if I can help one person realize they’re more than their appearance, more than just a number, I feel really blessed by that,” she said.

CHEERS: to Medina County Auditor Michael E. Kovack’s office for helping some residents going through foreclosure keep their homes. Members of Kovack’s staff received special training through the nonprofit Empowering and Strengthening Ohio People to help negotiate new payment plans between borrowers and lenders. Those interested in making an appointment may call the auditor’s office at 330-725-9137.

CHIDINGS: to administrators of the Army Emergency Relief fund, a charity meant to help relieve the financial troubles of soldiers and their families, for stockpiling a $345 million reserve. While it’s prudent to set aside a little bit of money, it’s a disservice to U.S. soldiers and to those who contribute to the charity to sit on so much cash instead of putting it in the hands of those who need it.

CHEERS: to former Miami banker Leonard Abess Jr., who recently sold his family-owned bank for a small fortune — and didn’t forget the long-serving employees who helped make his business a success. Abess distributed bonuses totaling $60 million among 471 current and retired workers. With all the news of taxpayer-funded bailouts and tales of bankers behaving badly, it is a welcome story of someone who did the right thing.