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Lauren Hill’s life inspires us all

Tuesday, April 21, 2015 — The college basketball season is officially finished with Duke being crowned the national champions for the men and University of Connecticut for the women. Some may argue that the biggest story of the college basketball season may have been the debate about the “one-and-done rule,” or the possibility of Kentucky going undefeated. In reality the biggest story in college basketball took place at Mount St. Joseph University.

Mount St. Joseph is a division three school in Ohio that has an enrollment of less than 2,000 undergrad students. Why was this small school the biggest story of the season? Lauren Hill. Early on in 2014, Hill was like any other 19 year old. She graduated high school and was getting ready to go begin college and play basketball, the game she loved.

That was until she was diagnosed with DIPG, a form of terminal brain cancer and was told she only had a few more months to live. Despite the terrible news, Hill was determined to accomplish her dream. That dream was to play college basketball and the Mount St. Joseph program was going to help make that a reality.

Read more: Lauren Hill’s life inspires us all

John Michael Montgomery — a true country legend

Tuesday, April 21, 2015 — Some of my first country music memories rise from the ashes of my grandfather’s beer joint just outside Ft. Worth in the mid-1950s. I remember he had an old jukebox, but he refused to let the serviceman put any Elvis 45s on it. Nope, Grandpa want wanted real country artists like Roy Acuff, Ernest Tubb, Red Foley, George Jones, Eddie Arnold, Kitty Wells, Red Sovine and Johnnie and Jack.

It worked. Sure enough, every afternoon those wrinkly, squinty-eyed, sun-parched Texas cowpokes rolled up in their disposable pickups (that’s a Texas term, I think), scraped the mud and manure off their boots, dropped a couple of nickels into the old Wurlitzer and enjoyed a little music with a few bottles of salted beer poured in skinny little glasses.

Read more: John Michael Montgomery — a true country legend

Thanks for another great fishing derby

Chalk up another great event for Lassen County youngsters — The 26th annual Susanville Junior Fishing Derby sponsored by the Susanville Sportsmen’s Club.

Blessed by a special dispensation from the California Department of Fish and Wildlife that permits the event the week before the regular fishing season opens, the children rise early in the morning to ply their fishing skills along the Susan River or Piute Creek through Memorial Park (for the younger anglers).

Read more: Thanks for another great fishing derby

Responding to the dreaded jury summons

OK, I suspect most of you are just like me — you don’t exactly jump for joy when that red and blue summons from the Lassen County Superior Court turns up in your mailbox and demands your presence to possibly serve as a juror.

I guess it’s not as bad as an induction order — if you’re old enough to remember those things — but it is the government putting your life on hold for a morning, days or maybe even weeks just the same.

I’ve been up here in Lassen County since 1999 and I’m guessing this is the fourth time I’ve been called for jury duty, but I’ve never been selected to serve.

Read more: Responding to the dreaded jury summons

Have you thought about water conservation lately?

Tuesday, April 7, 2015 — While visiting my parents a few weeks ago I became keenly aware of the impact of the drought in California. They live in the foothills of rural El Dorado County and draw water from a well that has sufficiently met their needs for decades, but these last two years they have had to self-ration to keep from running out of water.

They no longer water lawns in the summer and water gardens sparingly. A bucket next to the shower catches water as it warms up and once you are in the shower allotted time is short. While it is easy to understand why they would monitor their water supply at home, I realized their conservation efforts extend beyond their property lines.

Read more: Have you thought about water conservation lately?

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Saturday, August 01, 2015