Letters to the Editor, March 29-31, 2017
Submissions from Park Record readers
March 28, 2017
Locals rally support for lung transplant patient
Park City native Riley Hancey was an active, healthy, 19-year-old young man until late November, 2016. Having grown up in the Park City area, he enjoyed skiing, mountain biking, and river rafting. Sadly, that all changed in early December when Riley was admitted to the University of Utah Hospital due to influenza/pneumonia and additional complications that resulted in a severe lung infection. By mid-December his lungs were no longer functioning and he was placed on a life-support system (ECMO) to oxygenate his blood. At that time he was also placed in a medically induced coma for a couple of weeks in the hope that his lungs would recover while the infection was controlled. Unfortunately, by mid-January it was determined that although the infection had abated, Riley's lungs had been irreversibly damaged and his only option for survival is a lung transplant.
In late February, Riley was flown by a medical support jet to the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia where he is on the transplant list awaiting the availability of suitable lungs. In the meantime, Riley remains on the life-support system. Throughout his ordeal Riley has managed to stay upbeat and share some smiles, especially with his many visitors while at the University of Utah, despite considerable physical discomfort and being well aware of his circumstances and prognosis.
The Hanceys have started a long-distance support effort rotating family members through Philadelphia to provide Riley companionship and emotional support while he awaits a suitable donor organ and during his recovery period after the transplant surgery. The family would like to thank all the medical care providers at the University of Utah, University of Pennsylvania, and the medical transport team for their outstanding level of care and support. The outpouring of love and support from Riley's friends is also greatly appreciated.
A fundraising site at https://www.youcaring.com/rileyhancey-755941 has been established to help the family with travel and lodging expenses.
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Senior citizens lobby for local care facility
I am writing today as a representative of a group of seniors who recently met with Mayor Jack Thomas to inform him and the Park City Council of their strong desire to have a continuing-care facility established for the citizens of Park City and the Summit County area. Seniors at the meeting stated that, rather than spending their remaining years in some other area, they wish to stay in the city they have contributed to, loved and appreciated. If some physical condition should develop depriving them of their independence, this would not be possible under current circumstances.
The appropriateness of having such a facility available for seniors fits well with the city’s stated goals to maintain diversity in the ages of the population of our community. Also, having this type of facility here would be a benefit to many citizens who need rehabilitation after surgery or a serious illness.
In past years many groups have expressed interest in this area, but have not been able to accomplish their goal of having it become a reality. The current seniors working on this issue are hoping that with the help of the mayor, city council, and Summit County Commission this goal may become a reality for the benefit of seniors and other citizens in our community.
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EpicPromise supports women's mentoring program
On March 17, Vail EpicPromise hosted Park City Community Foundation's Mentoring Program and 12 Ecker Hill Middle School girls for a truly memorable day on the mountain. Students paired up with Women's Giving Fund mentors to experience both fun and enriching activities. Pairs rode the Park City Mountain Coaster before participating in a heartfelt and inspiring workshop by Stacy Ulch of Girls on the Run about living fearlessly and overcoming obstacles. As the girls and their mentors got their heart rates up together, they also shared their hearts.
Thank you to all our mentors, Ecker Hill girls, Ginny Etheridge, Compass Property, All Seasons Resorts, and Girls on the Run for your partnership and heartfelt enthusiasm to inspire our future leaders.
This event was made possible thanks to a generous contribution by Vail Resorts. The Women's Giving Fund Mentoring Program, which also includes twelve Power Lunches at Ecker Hill annually, is a direct result of an EpicPromise grant. Women's Giving Fund includes 1,308 members and distributes a high-impact grant to a nonprofit's project for women and children each year. The first grant helped found PC Tots, an affordable daycare, and this year provided a safe medical exam space for children of abuse at the Children's Justice Center.
Thank you, Vail Resorts and to our mentors for this enriching program. To become a Women's Giving Fund member or to be a mentor, you can reach out any time at email@example.com. This year's grant recipient will be announced July 10, 2017.
Lauren Vitulli, Mentoring Coordinator
Park City Community Foundation
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A message from our local moose herd
Wednesday's edition of The Park Record in my driveway appeared to have been read before I picked it up. There were pages ripped, some pages missing, and a suspicious hoof mark. Later, I discovered the editorial page in my back yard. Written clumsily, in green grass stains, was a message which I feel I should transmit to you.
"We read a Letter to the Editor about moose and other animals excessively populating this area. We wish to point out that, in fact, some of us were here first. In fact, overpopulation of this area by a species which is a clear invasion of habitat, is disturbing to us. While we appreciate some of this species — especially those who thoughtfully plant tulips and other yummy things for us.
The fact is that the new residents of our landscape are much too frequently fatal to us. For example, we used to easily traverse a small section of hard pavement to get from Quarry Mountain to our favorite stream by what seems now to be known as a "White Barn." Now, that place has become a death trap for us; it's really wide, and also, we have difficulty judging the absurd speed and maneuvers of brick-shaped metal thingies. In addition, it is difficult for us to move around our territory. There are "decorative" fences we have to jump over, and we have to walk around things like garden sheds and swing sets.
What's this all about? All of this laudable "growth" is a pain for us. Above all, what's with all the mini-wolves you keep, which like to chase us around? As we said, we were here first. Give us some room!"
I can't quite make out the signatures on this note: it looks something like "Buck, Bambi, and Bullwinkle."
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Sundance Film Festival shares uplifting story with Park City
This past winter has been a memorable one. We received snow like we've not seen in nearly a decade and experienced a Film Festival that brought us some truly inspirational films. Thanks to Sundance, our small town is the beneficiary of a world-class event that puts the focus of the world on us, albeit briefly. The Women's March on Main Street was a particularly large event that benefited from the presence of the Festival.
In the film "Dolores," we were reminded that social justice knows no age boundaries, as the 86-year old protagonist was marching down the streets of Park City that snowy Saturday morning alongside thousands of others, then attending the premiere of the movie that showcases her work. Dolores Huerta is an example of a relatively unknown champion, who was brought to light thanks to the work of one dedicated filmmaker. Sundance provided a platform for this story to be told to several hundreds, both locals and visitors, at several venues throughout the festival.
The Sundance Institute was able to invite a representatives from a diverse cohort of agencies to attend a community screening, included but not limited to Bright Futures, People's Health Clinic, and the Park City Community Foundation. I am grateful for being allowed to watch this film as it has affected how I approach work in the community we all love.
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Park City should invest in locals-only parking, not pools
Who needs a $38.8 million aquatic center? How many people would it serve? How about a locals-only parking lot and ski lift that brings you to PCMR and back. The town/county could buy property and build a multi-story parking lot and a two way (up/down) ski lift that connects to PCMR.
This would serve more locals than an aquatic center. After all, most of us moved here to ski, not swim. I know which way I would want my tax dollars spent. How about you?
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Look to European Union for inspiration
Well, it's official. Our Utah legislature and governor have now passed the strictest DUI law in the country, based in part upon how well it works in Europe. This was unexpected, as I thought we inherently distrusted or dismissed anything coming out of socialistic European society. I stand corrected.
With our elected officials' newfound admiration for Europe's leadership, here are other areas they might want to consider:
Let's hear it for the EU!