Commentary by Tracy McCue, Sumner Newscow — Five Cueball thoughts for Sunday, Oct. 4, 2015…
1. Bev Stallbaumer…
It’s always hard to say goodbye to a friend. And Beverly Stallbaumer, who died last Sunday, was my friend.
When I moved to Wellington in 1992, Bev lived at the Wellington Daily News. When I say lived, I mean lived. She was in the office almost 24/7. She had a corner office in the sprawling room that held four full-time reporters, two office helpers, the late publisher Jackson Mitchell and herself. I was thinking about this the other day, but the WDN had 15 full time staffers when I moved here and that didn’t include those working at cable which was right next door. Thinking back on those days make me smile. WDN was a true local paper.
Bev was my first best friend in Wellington during those early years, and I’m not sure I would not have gotten to know the town as well if it wasn’t for her. I was amazed at how many people she was related to. And her daughter, Misty, was at the age of playing high school sports when I was a sports editor.
For all you living under that rock, someone filmed the K-State band performing during its season opener against South Dakota on Sept. 5. Near the end of the act, half the band formed a spaceship while the other half formed a Jayhawk. But it devolved into an interpretation of the Jayhawk performing a sex act. Google the Internet if you don’t know what I’m talking about.
Granted the first time I saw it, I couldn’t stop laughing. If you watched it from a You Tube perspective, it hard not to catch what looks like an innuendo.
But never for one second did I think this was done on purpose. And there has been nothing out there that has changed my mind otherwise.
Commentary by James Jordan, Sumner Newscow — The Kentucky county clerk who is in jail for contempt of court after refusing to hand out marriage licenses to gay couples is not a victim of religious persecution.
She is an elected official and has sworn to follow the law and uphold the law. She does not like the law that makes gay marriage legal, that’s fair enough. But that is her job. She was jailed for contempt of court, but offered releases if she would not try to stop others in her office from issuing the licenses. She refused. So now she is in jail by choice.
People on both sides are trying to make this into a big issue, but it just bothers me for her to play the religious persecution card. It also bothers me for politicians to say this means Christians are now under attack.
The Christian thing for her to do – from a Biblical perspective – would be to resign. Maybe then she could say she lost her job for her religious beliefs. As it is, she is just disobeying the law and getting lots of publicity.
Right leaning politicians are saying its religious persecution and praising her for standing up for her beliefs.
Commentary by Tracy McCue, Sumner Newscow — Five Cueball thoughts for August 22, 2015…
1. Hernandez leaving…
Leonard Hernandez, CEO of Sumner Regional Medical Center, submitted his resignation Friday to take a similar position at Burlington.
While there is most certainly a reason to hit the panic button, this single event should not be defined as an ‘apocalypse is upon us’ defining moment.
Hernandez’ fate here in Wellington came a couple weeks ago when the Sumner County Medical Center board hired the consulting firm, Community Hospital Corporation, financed through the privately funded SRMC Endowment Foundation.
That firm will be doing an extensive assessment report of all operations at SRMC and bring its recommendations back to the board in a few months.
Commentary by Tracy McCue, Sumner Newscow — Five Cueball thoughts for August 9, 2015…
It’s hard to fathom a sadder story than the death of a 9-year-old batboy in Wichita last weekend at the National Baseball Congress World Series. It’s one that has bothered me greatly, because the batboy and the ball boys at football games have been such an integral part of game.
My personal favorite ball boys of all time were Tyson Rayl and Brandon Wilmoth, who retrieved balls those great Wellington Crusader football teams in the early 1990s. To this day, when I look at Brandon, I can’t help but see him as a 10-year-old on the sidelines ready to make the important football exchange. His performance was so legendary as a ballboy, he got a phone call from New England Patriot Quarterback Tom Brady, a couple of years back to take care of the footballs. I made that last sentence up.
As we grapple with the tragedy at Lawrence-Dumont Stadium, let’s eventually put this in perspective. It was a freak accident. I have never heard it happening before. Bat and football boys have been part of the game for an eternity. They humanize a game that can sometimes get way too seriously. And you never know what kind of lasting effect it has on a kid.
For Brandon, he would be come a player for the Crusaders which made a long run into the playoffs and set up the state championship years ahead. Wilmoth would return four years later as a middle school football coach. He is now a game official retrieving balls from other ball boys. For me, Brandon’s growth from ball boy to coach to official marks my own aging process and why I love living in a small town. Again, it’s one of those life experiences that is so good in so many ways.
by Al Melichar, Sumner County citizen — July 4, 1939 in Yankee stadium, an honored ball player walked forward to say a few words. That has been said to be the greatest speech in baseball history. Lou Gehrig said to a crowd of well-wishers, ”I considered myself to be the luckiest man on the face of this earth” It was the sentence before that historical quote that I beam with joy today. “When you have a wife who has been a tower of strength and shown more courage than you dreamed existed, you are truly bless. Those two quotes reflect my sentiments of my lovely wife, Turi.
Any couple, who faces a medical crisis, knows, without a doubt that their faith, their love for each other and marriage vows will be tested. Ours has been no exception. These past six years, after being diagnosed as having Alzheimer’s in our family, have been, no doubt the biggest challenge in our lives. Yes, I have kept the promise vows, I repeated to Turi, over 47 years ago, cherish and love in sickness and in health. Yet, the promise kept, that I want to share to you is greater than our wedding vows.
In the Book of Hebrews, God says, “I will never leave you nor forsake you”. This is the verse we needed when we heard, ” Turi, you have Alzheimer’s”. By faith alone, we had to believe that verse, to hold true, if we were going continue a happy life together.
Commentary by Tracy McCue, Sumner Newscow — You know why the U.S. of A is the greatest country in the world? Because we just are.
Last week, my son and I took a trip to Canada to watch Wellington High School senior Ryleigh Buck play for the U.S. Women’s Baseball team and sight see. One of our destinations was Niagara Falls. If you are going to visit Niagara Falls, figure out a way to get over to the Canadian side because the view is so much more spectacular and there are a lot more things to do.
While there, we ended up eating at a TGIF at a casino. I ordered a steak, a beer and an appetizer. Quinn ordered whatever gross thing Quinn likes to eat. When we got the bill, I about fell out of my chair. It was $77 Canadian dollars which equates into about $60 in U.S. currency. That wouldn’t fly in Wellington.
But then I looked at the taxation thereafter. The tax was 19 percent! We hadn’t included a tip yet. I asked the waiter to come over and look at the bill to see if it was right.
“Oh, yes,” he said. “We here in Canada take it in the shorts. We have a lot of things to pay for up here including free healthcare.”
Pay for something that is free. I like it.
Commentary by Tracy McCue, Sumner Newscow — Chicken Little seems to have moved to Wellington.
Now the sky is falling. People are moving away. Utility rates will be raised to such high proportions that we may never have electricity again. The city is going bankrupt. The hospital is about to close. The water tower is about to fall smack dab on the roundabout at any second.
But while we are in this utter state of panic, let’s just contemplate these few facts:
The world is 4.5 billion years. The United States is 239 years. Wellington is 144 years olds…
Wellington has survived a tornado, a few industrial shutdowns, the Great Depression, two World Wars, a few floods, fires, a poor decision not to get a community college, and a horse mishap in a Wheat Festival Parade.
We can survive this… whatever “this” is.
People, I am exhausted.
With the Fourth of July holiday ending this week, we ask ourselves this important question…