The way Susan Lincoln sees it, sometimes “thank you” isn’t enough.
“It’s one thing to say ‘thank you.’ It’s another thing to do something,” she said.
Susan is the lifestyles coordinator at Spring River Christian Village, 201 S. Northpark Lane, which is holding its first-ever First Responders’ Picnic today.
“We really don’t know what to expect,” Susan said.
Susan said invitations — some of them personally delivered — were sent to as many police, fire and emergency medical personnel in the area as possible.
“We tried to invite everyone we could think of,” she said.
Because Spring River Christian Village has a high senior citizen population, its staff is no stranger to first responders, but Susan said that’s not why the picnic is being held.
“We just wanted to say ‘thank you’ in a fun way,” she said.
The picnic runs from 3 to 7 p.m. on the lawn on the west side of Spring River Christian Village. It is open to all area first responders and their families. Hot dogs, chips, soda and snow cones will be served. There also will be two large bounce houses for children, as well as live music and a number of games. The Spring River Christian Village Choir will perform a tribute song.
Susan knows that a picnic, hot dogs and an afternoon of fun are not enough to compensate first responders for the risks they take on a daily basis. She said the staff at Spring River Christian Village just wanted to make sure that area first responders understand how much the community appreciates what they do.
“When you’re in the middle of a desperate situation and need help, you might not even think about saying ‘thank you’ at the time,” she said. “So sometimes they (first responders) might not even get that.”
On Wednesday, as the nation looked back at Sept. 11, 2001, there were a number of stories detailing the brave work done by those first responders who rushed to help after the destruction of the Twin Towers in New York City. Those men and women ran into those buildings knowing that they were risking their lives but, more importantly, that there were people inside who needed their help.
Several years ago, a veteran member of the Missouri State Highway Patrol explained to me the difference between what first responders do and what the rest of us do.
“They (first responders) rush toward danger, not away from it,” he said.
If there was ever a community that understands the value and importance of the work performed by first responders, it is Joplin. It’s impossible to think back to the 2011 tornado and not visualize the hundreds if not thousands of first responders who converged on the area to offer whatever help they could. Lives were saved because of that help, and further tragedy was averted because of them.
But that’s what first responders do. They help other people. You don’t decide to become a police officer or a firefighter or an EMT unless you want to help others. You certainly don’t do it because of the money.
It’s no secret that in this country, our values tend to be turned upside down, but still it’s hard to understand how an average first-year NFL player can earn 10 times more than a veteran police officer or firefighter.
All the more reason, Susan said, for Spring River Christian Village to put on the picnic.
“It’s sad that they are not paid based on the risks they take,” she said.
The folks at Spring River Christian Village tried to get out invitations to as many public service departments as they could think of, but it’s possible that some were missed, Susan said. So, if you’re a first responder and didn’t get an invitation, feel free to drop by, have a few hot dogs and receive a sincere “thank you.”
DO YOU HAVE AN IDEA for Mike Pound’s column? Call him at 417-623-3480, ext. 7259, or email him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @mikepoundglobe.
The way Susan Lincoln sees it, sometimes “thank you” isn’t enough.
- Local News
Con-Way raises $50,000 for Truckloads of Treasures
About 300 employees of Con-way Truckload, family members and friends went on a shopping spree at Target Tuesday night using $50,000 the company raised for its 20th annual Truckloads of Treasures campaign.
Appellate court rules in favor of Neosho TDD
In another legal victory for the Neosho Transportation Development District, the Southern District of the Missouri Court of Appeals has upheld a lower court’s ruling that the district’s formation cannot be challenged.
Mike Pound: MSSU basketball coach deserves accolades
Whether he likes it or not (I’m guessing he won’t), the accolades have already started pouring in. It is exactly the sort of thing he hates. It’s not that he doesn’t appreciate the kind words that have come his way, because he does. It’s that he is afraid any fuss over him will take attention away from his players.
Commencement exercises set for MSSU, PSU, Crowder College
Commencement ceremonies have been set for students who will graduate this month from local colleges and universities.
Southeast Kansas school board votes to close McCune school
In a unanimous vote Wednesday night, the remaining four members of the Southeast of Cherokee School Board sealed their decision to close McCune Attendance Center, one of five possible options for reorganization of USD 247.
Couple’s quarrel ends in fatal shooting
A 54-year-old man is believed to have shot and killed his wife, and then called 911 and waited for deputies to arrive at their home east of La Russell. Lawrence County Sheriff Brad DeLay said David K. Holman was arrested Monday night after the fatal shooting of Radonna L. (Roland) Holman, 55, inside their home at 6504 Highway 97.
Cold weather, holidays raise risk for house fires
The combination of cold weather extremes and Christmas decorating should have residents watching out for fire danger. Improperly placed space heaters and overloaded electrical circuits are common causes for house fires when temperatures drop, and Christmas trees, burning candles and holiday decorating can increase the risk, fire officials said this week.
Missourians allowed to donate unclaimed property
Missourians can donate unclaimed property held by state government directly to charities that support military veterans, medical research, children’s education and other causes under a new program state Treasurer Clint Zweifel announced Wednesday.
Racine Christian Church reschedules “Journey to Bethlehem”
Racine Christian Church has rescheduled “Journey to Bethlehem” which was canceled last week due to weather.
Baseball proposal draws support of city staff
Advisers to the Joplin City Council recommended Monday night that the council go forward with a proposal to bring a professional baseball team to Joplin. The El Paso (Texas) Diablos, an independent professional team, have proposed moving to Joplin because a Triple-A affiliate of the San Diego Padres is moving into El Paso.
- More Local News Headlines
- Con-Way raises $50,000 for Truckloads of Treasures