Brattleboro can’t Go Fourth without your help

Editor of the Reformer:

The "By the People: Brattleboro Goes Fourth" citizens committee is planning the town’s 41st annual Independence Day celebration, set for Friday, July 4, with a morning parade downtown and afternoon and evening program of free activities, concerts and fireworks at Living Memorial Park.

But first, our all-volunteer effort must raise money to pay for local bands, pyrotechnics and appropriate liability insurance and security. With the coming closure of Vermont Yankee, we’re losing our sole longtime fireworks sponsor. As a result, we’ll be collecting money from spectators at the evening show ("Pay As You Throw" meet "Pay So We Glow") in hopes the community will allow the event to continue.

In addition, we invite all area individuals, businesses and organizations to offer donations at our annual WTSA radiothon, coming Friday, June 13, to the Brattleboro Area Chamber of Commerce on Main Street. (People can give in advance by mailing to: "By the People: Brattleboro Goes Fourth," P.O. Box 1112, Brattleboro, VT 05302.)

We’ll publicize more specifics on our new Brattleboro Goes Fourth Facebook page, so help us by checking it out -- and contributing, too. This celebration has been a town tradition for four decades, and the committee appreciates your help in ensuring it continues.

Kevin O’Connor

For the "By the People:
Brattleboro Goes Fourth"
citizens committee, May 29

Treatment of our veterans is a crying shame

Editor of the Reformer:

My father was a proud decorated veteran of World War II. Last year, my father passed away at the age of 90 at a hospice in Keene, N.H. He was a lifetime resident of Vermont. Over the years, he had many illnesses, heart attacks, hearing problems and finally cancer.

Many times, when we spoke he would say "I have an appointment at the VA in White River." In his 80s, he was driving to the Veterans Administration Medical Center in White River Junction, a distance of 65 miles. He lived only three miles from Brattleboro Memorial Hospital. I believe that any veteran that qualifies for VA healthcare should be given an ID that would allow them to go the nearest healthcare facility for treatment.

Sadly before he died, my brother checked him into BMH. He was transferred to the VA. When we saw him, he asked for his keys because he wanted to drive to the VA. He did not understand that he was already there.

My father was my hero and a military hero. The way veterans are being treated is a crying shame. These proud veterans should not be treated this way. God bless the USA and the veterans that gave all.

Jim Mayotte

Sanbornton, N.H., May 30