News From Terre Haute, Indiana

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December 17, 2013

Readers’ Forum: Dec. 18, 2013

Safety officers play major role

As principal of Lost Creek Elementary School, I am so very appreciative that our Vigo County schools have the additional protection of our School Protection Officers. In the wake of the school tragedies such as Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., our schools’ educators have partnered with our community to focus time and resources in developing a plan to protect our children against possible danger.

Being the principal of a large elementary school, I greatly appreciate school resource officers. The School Protection Officers are hired through a partnering agreement with our city, county and school corporation to make this happen in our schools. Lost Creek’s officers, Sheriffs Don Westerfield and Duke Smith, greet visitors and students at the door and assist daily in many ways to maintain safety and security at our school.

Our Lost Creek community sees the officers as assistants, confidants and support for our staff and students. The mere presence of the officers helps to remind everyone who enters the building that respectful behavior is an expectation and their prominent presence ensures students, parents and staff that safety, learning, and fun will be the order of the day — each and every day.

Our public has adjusted to the security changes — having understood that they are necessary to guarantee safety. Most have been very thankful for these changes which have included buzzing in for building access, sign-in procedures and an announced escort to classrooms.

Schools are still one of the safest places for children to be, and by continuing to maintain and improve our safety drills, crisis plans and communication with our first responders (city and county law enforcement), our children will thrive in this great community that puts their safety first.

— Marsha Jones, principal

Lost Creek Elementary

Kind help from special people

On Sunday we were driving on I-70 eastbound with our daughter, Dr. Rumu Sarkar, for the Indianapolis Airport. She was to catch a plane to go to Washington, D.C., where she lives. But near the 15-mile marker the right front tire of my  car busted and we were stranded. We called the AAA, but they were unable to send any help in 90 minutes.

Then a lady stopped her car and asked if we needed any help, and knowing about  the situation, she took Rumu in her car to drop her at the airport so Rumu could catch the plane and go to Washington safely and on time.

We were waiting in the extreme cold and then after an hour a sheriff’s car stopped to give us needed help.

The officer was Deputy Sheriff of Vigo County Brent A. Hall. He was very polite and kind and called the AAA for help, but to help us, he removed the busted tire himself and put the spare on even when surrounded by extreme cold and snow.

I told him that he was the result of my prayer to lord Jesus and we could drive home safely. I know for sure that Americans are very kind and most helpful and the USA is the best country in the world. Where on earth we can find such kind people?

May the Lord bless these nice people.

— Anil K. Sarkar, M.D.

Terre Haute

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    March 12, 2010