Arnold Palmer’s ex­tra­or­di­nary gift for West­town cou­ple

Daily Local News (West Chester, PA) - - NEWS - Tom McCarey Ber­wyn

To the Ed­i­tor: Although we never had the priv­i­lege of meet­ing Arnold Palmer, his pres­ence in our life jour­ney can­not be over­stated!

You see, twenty-two years ago my wife Bob­bie re­ceived a lethal late-stage cancer di­ag­no­sis. She en­dured sev­eral pro­ce­dures and three surg­eries, in­clud­ing one that was mas­sive.

There was how­ever at one point, we thought maybe, just maybe, it was all be­hind us ....

Un­til we found out an­other pro­ce­dure was needed!

As she was wheeled out from her HUP hos­pi­tal room, I knew Bob­bie’s body was beaten up, she was ex­hausted, but she hadn’t given up and so I knew I needed to find some­thing dif­fer­ent that would mo­ti­vate her more than any words of ex­hor­ta­tion.

About a year be­fore cancer en­tered our lives, Bob­bie had started tak­ing a keen in­ter­est in golf, she’d taken lessons, even played a round.

Over the years to­gether we’d watch the ma­jors and other fa­vorite tour­na­ments.

And we both were sad­dened when we learned Paul Azinger had been at­tacked by cancer, and then even more moved by his in­spi­ra­tional come­back.

So it wasn’t sur­pris­ing that af­ter Bob­bie’s cancer di­ag­no­sis, Zinger was the one golfer she fol­lowed more closely than any other.

In­deed, his sur­vival be­came a sort of guide­post.

As it hap­pened, his book “Zinger” came out a day or two be­fore Bob­bie’s pro­ce­dure.

Im­me­di­ately I knew I some­how had to find a way to get a signed copy of the book with maybe a word or two of en­cour­age­ment from Paul Azinger for my wife. Even if he lived in Florida, and we were in Philadel­phia.

I went into over­drive. Try­ing to get in touch with Azinger, I looked him up in Braden­ton Florida where I’d read he resided, and then tried Or­lando, and even tried thru the PGA HQ in Ponte Ve­dra. All to no avail. I was do­ing so against a time clock click­ing in my brain. I was try­ing des­per­ately to do the im­pos­si­ble. I wante, no I needed, some­how that Azinger-signed book to be await­ing my wife when she would wake up the next morn­ing...

As a des­per­ate last re­sort, on a whim, I de­cided to try a to­tally dif­fer­ent ap­proach.

I called Bay Hill Club & Lodge to one of my life-long heroes: Arnold Palmer.

Some­how I was put thru to the club­house, where as soon as a man’s voice said hello, in tears I blurted out my whole story, my search for a signed book from Paul Azinger for my wife, so she’d keep fight­ing her bat­tle against cancer.

As soon as I stopped to take a breath, the voice told me he un­der­stood, felt bad, was the wrong per­son for me to talk to, but would pass me over to “some­one who can help you, if any­one can.”

A few sec­onds later, a quiet kind voice came on the phone, say­ing “Richard, I am Mr. Palmer’s as­sis­tant, I hear your wife is in the hos­pi­tal, and you are look­ing for help, if you don’t mind, please tell me the whole story again, and let’s see if we can help you. Be­cause if any­one can, know­ing Mr. Palmer, he will find a way to make it hap­pen. As I am sure you know, cancer is some­thing he is all too fa­mil­iar with.”

I re­told my story one more time. My plea to some­how find a way to mo­ti­vate my wife, best friend, and busi­ness part­ner, and ex­plained again how much Paul Azinger’s story had touched her.

I will never ever for­get and will be for­ever grate­ful for the look of sur­prise and huge smile on Bob­bie’s face, when a copy of “Zinger” signed by and with a lovely para­graph of per­sonal en­cour­age­ment from Paul Azinger was de­liv­ered the next morn­ing.

To­day, that book still lays on the shelf on Bob­bie’s side of the bed. And Bob­bie is cancer free! Richard Pomer­antz


Sup­port­ing Lon­don

To the Ed­i­tor: As a for­mer mil­i­tary of­fi­cer and com­bat vet­eran, I sup­port Jack Lon­don for State Sen­ate and this is why:

I re­cently re­turned to Chester County af­ter be­ing away for the bet­ter part of a decade due to ac­tive duty ser­vice in the United States Army. I was med­i­cally re­tired at the age of 29 be­cause of in­juries sus­tained dur­ing com­bat in ser­vice to this na­tion. As such, I am very con­cerned with the cur­rent state of sup­port vet­er­ans across the na­tion re­ceive from var­i­ous lev­els of govern­ment. While the U.S. Depart­ment of Vet­er­ans’ Af­fairs has pro­grams for vet­er­ans’ needs, there are sig­nif­i­cant gaps in care that stem from an over­bur­dened sys­tem. Penn­syl­va­nia can and should work to fill these gaps in or­der to en­sure that the nearly one mil­lion vet­er­ans liv­ing here have ac­cess to pro­grams they may need.

Too of­ten, politi­cians at ev­ery level of govern­ment do lit­tle more than pay lip ser­vice when it comes to vet­er­ans’ is­sues. Sure, they may say things like “I sup­port our vet­er­ans” and “I will fight for vet­er­ans”, but what does that re­ally mean? There is hardly any sub­stance to these words. In the eyes of many vet­er­ans, my­self in­cluded, it is lit­tle more than empty rhetoric. My re­search and ex­pe­ri­ence this week has showed me that in Penn­syl­va­nia, our cur­rent elected rep­re­sen­ta­tives are the type who pay lip ser­vice to vet­er­ans but do not do any­thing re­ally mean­ing­ful. While cer­tain bills have been passed that ben­e­fit a small per­cent­age of the state’s vet­er­ans, or give vet­er­ans the abil­ity to ob­tain a spe­cial li­cense plate for their ve­hi­cle, sig­nif­i­cant ben­e­fits have been put on the back burner. For ex­am­ple, Sen­ate Bill 1019 would pro­vide for a dras­tic im­prove­ment in the avail­abil­ity and ac­ces­si­bil­ity of men­tal health ser­vices for vet­er­ans and their fam­i­lies.

Men­tal health is­sues, par­tic­u­larly those stem­ming from com­bat-re­lated Post Trau­matic Stress and mil­i­tary sex­ual abuse are a real and sig­nif­i­cant concern amongst the vet­eran pop­u­la­tion. Vet­er­ans with se­ri­ous men­tal health is­sues are more prone to sub­stance abuse, self harm and even sui­cide. Ac­cord­ing to a Depart­ment of Vet­er­ans’ Af­fairs study com­pleted in 2016, the risk for sui­cide was 21% higher amongst vet­er­ans com­pared to U.S. civil­ian adults. Sen­ate Bill 1019 would take steps to help those vet­er­ans most in need.

What sur­prised and frankly dis­ap­pointed me was that SB1019 has been sit­ting in the Sen­ate Com­mit­tee on Vet­er­ans Af­fairs and Emer­gency Pre­pared­ness since Septem­ber 29, 2015. For nearly a year, mean­ing­ful leg­is­la­tion that would go a long way in dras­ti­cally im­prov­ing the qual­ity oflife for Penn­syl­va­nia’s vet­er­ans has just been sit­ting there. There has been no vote on it. I reached out to the of­fices of State Sen­a­tor Andy Din­ni­man (who sits on the Com­mit­tee) to ask why noth­ing has been done about it and they weren’t able to give me an an­swer.

I want answers as to why a piece of leg­is­la­tion that could help my fel­low vet­er­ans has had no move­ment in a year. So I spoke with Jack Lon­don, Sen­a­tor Din­ni­man’s op­po­nent. I talked to Jack about the ma­jor con­cerns vet­er­ans have, par­tic­u­larly when it comes to men­tal health ser­vices. I brought up SBI 019. Jack was just as shocked as I was with the lack of ef­fort to pass the bill. He said that he would make it a pri­or­ity to push through this piece of mean­ing­ful leg­is­la­tion so that we can get those vet­er­ans suf­fer­ing from men­tal health is­sues the help they so des­per­ately need. I knew from Jack’s back­ground as a po­lice of­fi­cer that the ideals of ser­vice and car­ing for those in need are in­grained in him. I am con­fi­dent that Jack will be an ad­vo­cate for Penn­syl­va­nia’s vet­er­ans. I stand with Jack, be­cause I know Jack Lon­don will stand up for me. Sin­cerely, Sean C. Mur­phy

West Chester

Cau­tion: Taxes Ahead

To the Ed­i­tor: Driv­ers need to be very care­ful in the com­ing weeks: speed cam­eras are likely to pro­lif­er­ate in Penn­syl­va­nia. As part of his ef­fort to com­bat the huge state deficit, Gov­er­nor Thomas Wolf and his speed-cam­era-pro­mot­ing Lt. Gov­er­nor Michael Stack and the Leg­isla-

ture are likely to put pedal to the metal in see­ing that the not-for-safety cash ma­chines go up ev­ery­where in or­der to sup­ply more rev­enue for the ir­re­spon­si­ble leg­is­la­ture to waste.

More of our money, the politi­cians don’t need. The tax base is crum­bling as our Rep­re­sen­ta­tives and Se­na­tors siphon more money out of the mid­dle class tank rather than cut back on their cars, perks, pen­sions and WAMs. But, since ev­ery­one drives, cam­era rev­enue is seen by them as a growth

de­mo­graphic. What vi­sion!

Con­tact your elected pub­lic ser­vants and de­mand that cam­era traf­fic en­force­ment for-profit be banned. Oth­er­wise, the road is not clear ahead. VOTE NO on HB 2233! Thank you.


Sup­port­ing Rzu­cidlo

To the Ed­i­tor: We are all tired of the po­lit­i­cal sea­son which seems to last longer and longer each pres­i­den­tial year.

I’m putting my en­ergy into lo­cal pol­i­tics. I re­ceived a mailer from Eric Roe who is run­ning against Su­san

Rzu­cidlo in the 158th. I could not be­lieve what I read – in­de­pen­dent lead­er­ship, will fight for us and will cut through par­ti­san pol­i­tics. Re­ally? In a fundrais­ing let­ter he promised to stand with his Repub­li­can col­leagues- hardly in­de­pen­dent or non-par­ti­san.

What we know about Eric: He’s 28 years old. He was a Fel­low in Ori­gins of Con­ser­va­tive Thought at the John Jay In­sti­tute- Google it. His for­mer em­ploy­ers were Let Free­dom Ring, The Amer­i­can Con­ser­va­tive Union, the Repub­li­can Na­tional Com­mit­tee and Sen­a­tor Rick San­to­rum- Google them. All these jobs were in Wash­ing­ton DC up un­til 2015 when he

was hired to work for a Chester County Com­mis­sioner. Does this sound like he’s go­ing to cut through par­ti­san pol­i­tics? This smacks of ul­tra-con­ser­va­tivism, po­lit­i­cal am­bi­tion and Wash­ing­ton D.C.

In ad­di­tion, Eric is on the board of Amer­i­cans for Chris­tian Tra­di­tions in our Na­tion, lo­cally known as A.C.T.I.O.N. of PA. He also serves as Sec­re­tary of their State Coun­cil. This group car­ries posters of aborted fe­tuses and protests Planned Par­ent­hood in WC, of­ten scream­ing hor­ren­dous things to the clients en­ter­ing the build­ing. The ma­jor­ity of women go­ing to PP go for health screen­ings and med­i­cal care NOT abor­tions. A friend of mine worked at PP in the Tech Depart­ment, and was called the devil when she dropped her el­derly mother off for mass at a lo­cal catholic church by A.C.T.I.O.N. mem­bers. This group has also been known to pub­lish the em­ploy­ees li­cense plate num­bers and per­sonal in­for­ma­tion on the In­ter­net. Nei­ther Eric Roe nor this group rep­re­sents Chester County Val­ues.

There isn’t one po­si­tion on his web­site. He didn’t even have the courage to at­tend the NAACP Meet the Can­di­dates night, choos­ing in­stead to send his wife. Cal­cu­lat­ing. If this isn’t a politi­cian

I don’t know what is.

I’ve known Su­san Rzu­cidlo for years and she is not a po­lit­i­cal op­er­a­tive. She has raised a fam­ily, built a busi­ness and is a home owner. She has lived here for over 50 years and un­like Eric, she pays prop­erty taxes, her chil­dren have gone through our pub­lic schools and she doesn’t hide her po­si­tions they are all on her web­site Google her.

I know Su­san as an ad­vo­cate and I know that as a State Rep she will bring all her ex­pe­ri­ence and knowl­edge to help her con­stituents. We live in a time of grid­lock in Harrisburg where she would be but one vote. How­ever, here in Chester County, her dis­trict of­fice would be a place of ad­vo­cacy for all the peo­ple.

I’m tired of can­di­dates ly­ing about who they are. I want the real deal and that is Su­san Rzu­cidlo. Vote for her for State Rep. Sin­cerely,

Deb­bie Matthews

Vote Hans Von Mol

To the Ed­i­tor: When an in­cum­bent state rep­re­sen­ta­tive has served three terms and seeks a fourth, vot­ers have enough in­for­ma­tion to de­cide how well the can­di­date has been serv­ing their in­ter­ests.

How, then, is War­ren Kampf per­form­ing in the PA Gen­eral Assem­bly? Where does he stand—and vote— on is­sues that mat­ter to us ci­ti­zens in the 157th Dis­trict? What and whom does he sup­port? It’s hard to de­ter­mine from his fre­quent news­let­ters, but a look at his vot­ing record and rat­ings is more re­veal­ing.

Kampf gets a 25% rat­ing from Planned Par­ent­hood Penn­syl­va­nia Ad­vo­cates. He has voted to make women’s ac­cess to re­pro­duc­tive health­care more dif­fi­cult.

Kampf gets a 33 per­cent rat­ing from the Sierra Club. On the 2012Mar­cel­lus Shale bill. Kampf voted to limit fund­ing for en­vi­ron­men­tal is­sues in fa­vor of the gas drilling lobby.

The Na­tional Ri­fle As­so­ci­a­tion rates him as vot­ing their way 64 per­cent of the time.

Project Vote Smart, a non­par­ti­san, vol­un­teer or­ga­ni­za­tion that col­lects in­for­ma­tion from elected of­fi­cials about their po­si­tions on key is­sues, re­ports that Kampf “has re­fused to pro­vide vot­ers with po­si­tions on key is­sues… de­spite re­peated re­quests.”

Kampf made the pre­pos­ter­ous claim in 2012 that the Voter ID Law (aka voter sup­pres­sion law) would “help vot­ers.” The cost of this failed Repub­li­can-led leg­is­la­tion not in­clud­ing the law’s de­fense in court – was at least $12 mil­lion.

Kampf voted for pen­sion re­form bills that would sig­nif­i­cantly weaken our al­ready un­der­funded and un­der­per­form­ing pen­sion fund.

Kampf voted NO- four times - on the 2013 trans­porta­tion bill which pro­vided much needed fund­ing for road and bridge re­pair as well as pub­lic tran­sit.

Kampf is the lead spon­sor of H.B. 1993 which re­moves the rights of school districts to con­duct ap­peals of un­der­assessed prop­er­ties. It could lead to sub­stan­tial losses in rev­enue for school districts. Large com­mer­cial prop­er­ties stand to ben­e­fit while res­i­den­tial tax­pay­ers will pay more in the form of in­creased mill­age. The PA School Board As­so­ci­a­tion op­poses it.

In short, War­ren Kampf has voted for spe­cial busi­ness in­ter­ests over the best in­ter­ests of the peo­ple and fam­i­lies of the 157th. He op­poses spend­ing on in­fra­struc­ture and sup­ports re­form that en­dan­gers the re­tire­ment se­cu­rity of all who pay into a state pen­sion plan.

War­ren Kampf is not watch­ing out for us, in the 157th. Vote for Hans von Mol in Novem­ber. Mar­garet van Naerssen


Are we bet­ter off?

To the Ed­i­tor: When Pres­i­dent Obama took of­fice, he ad­vo­cated a phi­los­o­phy of hope and change. How­ever, a phi­los­o­phy must be cou­pled with ap­pro­pri­ate ac­tion in or­der to be trans­formed into suc­cess.

Pres­i­dent Obama cre­ated poli­cies and ac­tions which he be­lieved would bring about bet­ter race re­la­tions at home, and re­duced ter­ror­ism around the world.

The bot­tom line is ... the bot­tom line:

Are race re­la­tions in Amer­ica bet­ter or worse since Pres­i­dent Obama took of­fice?

Have ter­ror­ist at­tacks in­creased or de­creased since Pres­i­dent Obama took of­fice? Jamie W. Gon­charoff

Chester Springs

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