In reading your article (R-J, 11-12) on Veterans Day ceremonies at the monuments at Meriden’s Broad Street (near the grocery store), I noticed mention of many politicians attending, but not of the current mayor, Mike Rohde. At the ceremonies, their was a quick statement made about Mayor Rohde being on vacation. I find it hard to believe that on the 11th hour, of the 11th day, of the 11th month (Veterans Day) that the mayor decides to take a vacation rather than to honor our brothers and sisters, not only of Meriden but of all veterans serving our country. I believe he owes an explanation to all Meriden veterans of his not attending, or not even a proclamation by him read in his absence.
It really saddened me to read about the death of old friend Allyn Chabot on Wednesday, Nov. 6. Allyn was like an older brother. His death only a day or two after his friend and mine, Raoul LaQuerre, was a double dose of sadness. Raoul and Allyn worked many years together at the old Meriden hospital. I worked there from 1966 until 1978. Both were approachable and always kind and respectful to others. I looked up to both of them as family. It has been many years since I’ve seen them. They were both veterans, great workers and very knowledgeable. My time with them at the hospital is worth remembering as happy times. I remember going to see Elvis Presley in 1975 with Allyn and Valerie in New Haven. It was a great show! I will always treasure that time. Allyn and Raoul will be definitely missed. Great people are always remembered, and that’s what they were — kind, honest, great people. Bless them both!
Nick Piccolo, Southington
A strong chain
I would like to extend my sincere appreciation to the voters of Southington for your support on Election Day. I consider being Town Clerk an honor and a privilege, and I look forward to serving the needs and interests of our residents. I would also like to give a special thank you to my tremendous network of supporters who did everything from putting signs in their yard and writing letters to standing in the cold at the polls for me and so much more. I especially want to thank my hard-working election committee who provided me guidance and support. It takes many dedicated people to run a successful campaign. Each of you was a link in a very strong chain, and I could not have done this without all of you.
Kathy Larkin, Southington
Military Family Month
November is Military Family Month, and as a leading nonprofit dedicated to strengthening community through youth development, healthy living and social responsibility, the Meriden YMCA offers the following tips to help children of military families in Meriden cope while loved ones serve overseas:
1. Avoid the Countdown: Try not to focus on the expected homecoming date of a loved one serving overseas as these dates can change. Instead, emphasize how mom or dad will be home once the work is done. 2. Give a Geography Lesson: Using maps and books to learn more about the place or region where the parent is stationed will empower the child and provide some comfort. 3. Family Ties that Bind: Help the child stay connected during separation by building holiday care packages for the parent and taking advantage of services like United Through Reading that videotapes a parent reading their child’s favorite book or the Armed Services YMCA’s Operation Kid Comfort program that provides a personally handcrafted quilt or pillow. 4. Monitor the Media: News stories can scare or alarm children, keep an eye on the child’s media exposure and be prepared to answer questions prompted by what they see and hear. 5. Take Advantage of the Internet: Utilize Facebook, Skype and other chat services to keep in touch with the parent in real-time. This will let the child know their parent is safe while providing important bonding time. 6. Find Time for You: When a loved one is away, the remaining caregiver takes on the brunt the family responsibilities. This can be stressful, and many Y’s offer free memberships through the Military Outreach Initiative and child care (free babysitting through the Meriden YMCA Take A Break Program) that provide additional support to keep the body and mind healthy. For more information, visit: www.meridenymca.org.
Joan Goodman, Meriden YMCA
November 12th’s R-J front page had an article with Wallingford Town Councilman Economopoulos losing his seat. Paragraph two, Economopoulos blames someone else (John Sullivan) for the loss of his seat. Maybe Mr. E should be looking in the mirror and take responsibility himself for his loss and stop the blame game. The system works — if enough voters don’t like what you did, what you stand for, or how you conduct yourself,they just don’t vote you back in; it is as simple as that.
Stop that blame game!
Paul Merola, Wallingford
Time to get to work
To Meriden Area 3: Thank you for re-electing me as your City Councilor (Minority Leader). On November 5th you voted for a more transparent, balanced government committed to the people. I will continue to earn your trust by faithfully working on your behalf and treating your dollars as my own (and I don’t spend easily!). I truly appreciated those that stood by me as big money, special interest and union endorsements attempted to remove taxpayer-first representation.
A special thank you to Tanya, Mike, Rebekah and Liz for their help keeping me composed and focused throughout the election season. And thank you to my mom, who passed away in mid-September. I know she was looking down over me.
Now it’s time to get to work. We will be rolling out several initiatives over the next 12 months in collaboration with our newly elected mayor and our five-member minority group. Next year’s budget will again present difficult questions and tough decisions will be made, but voters have selected a team of officials that will use common sense and reason to guide Meriden on its path to improvement. Again, thank you for your vote of confidence. I will not let you down.