The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA

Editorials

February 16, 2014

Readers' Forum 2-16 | Sports provides invaluable life lessons

JOHNSTOWN — This is in response to Dennis Edwards’ letter published Feb. 4, “Sports fans should get their own lives.” I have been involved in sports since I was old enough to participate and learned many invaluable lessons about life, which I have passed on to my daughters and grandchildren.

I have learned not only to lose graciously but also to win with grace. I have learned to respect others for their opinions, whether it concerns religion, politics, likes or dislikes, which apparently is a lesson Edwards obviously missed.

As far as his comment about sports fans living vicariously through their sports teams, I must respond with the following comment:

I am 53 years old. At 36, I suffered a brain-stem stroke, which has rendered me unable to participate in many of the sports I love so much. However, I still enjoy watching others play sports, not because I am unable to accomplish anything in my own life but because, through sports, I have learned to be happy for others who are fortunate enough to be able to accomplish their goals.

To take another quote from Edwards, “Sports fans are a pathetic group.” You, sir, are the pathetic one.

Kimberly Rohr

Portage

Resident or not, consider donating

The Richland Township Volunteer Fire Company provides exemplary services to the township and surrounding municipalities. Its average response time is two minutes. It averages 1,000 calls a year; that’s almost three a day.

These people put their lives in danger with every call, without a paycheck. The company relies on donations and fundraisers to maintain the building and equipment.

Private citizens and small businesses are very generous with their donations. But I find it reprehensible that of the approximately 700 businesses in Richland, only 165 donate to the fire company.

Two of the most lucrative businesses, both open 24 hours a day, donate nothing.

In spite of the lack of support from these 535 businesses, the fire station is prepared to respond to any emergency call, 24/7.

If you are thinking, “I don’t live in Richland, why should I donate?” think again. We have many stores and restaurants that you probably frequent. Your family or friends may attend Pitt-Johnstown or Penn Highlands Community College. Have you driven through Richland to go to Bedford or to reach an East Coast beach?

Wherever you live, please consider giving a donation to support our finest.

Thanks to all who have donated. May God bless you. For those businesses that make millions of dollars in profits and donate nothing, shame on you. You should be giving back to the community that supports your business.

Jean Cuppett

Richland Township

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