Featured Stories


LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

by: PAUL GEFROH - SunflowerSunflower grows from apple tree

Editor,

I have an ancient apple tree in the backyard. It still bears fruit. This year besides apples nature blessed us with a sunflower growing from a wound in the center of the tree. I tell the grandchildren that it was planted by God, which is the truth. I live on 41st off of Glenwood. Maybe you will find the photo interesting.

Paul Gefroh

Woodstock

Nobody ran down the kids today

Editor,

I’m deep in writing a novel, so permit me to try to use those skills to set the scene on Saturday morning, September 7th… Clouds and trees gently dappled an idyllic morning in Woodstock, and sounds of wind chimes and massing starlings graced our neighborhood. But at about 10 am that mood was disrupted at the intersection of S.E. Long Street and 48th Avenue, by the unmistakable sound of a “bad” wreck. We neighbors came out of our houses to find an overturned Black Lexus in the middle of Long, next to a Honda with a smashed front end. Neighbors and the people from the Honda were already helping the Lexus driver, who was hanging in her safety belts upside down. 911 was called. Quickly the Lexus driver was removed to sit on a nearby lawn, comforted by a neighbor, as the Honda driver was showing signs of shock and remorse. But this time, no one was injured. But even though it was his fault, my heart goes out to him: It could have been almost anyone, any time, driving too fast down S.E. Long. And next time it will be somebody else. That stretch goes from 42nd to 52nd – ten blocks – without a stop sign. More and more of us habitually use side-streets to get where we're going, as the main arteries increasingly clog and slow. People learn which side-streets are the least encumbered by traffic signs, use them more often because it’s quicker – and then drive faster without really thinking about it. (How much speed does it take to roll a Lexus SUV?)

Insurance will pay to replace the destroyed car; we can be thankful for the structural design, safety features, and anti-lock brakes on our modern cars, which likely saved lives today. And there was a miracle: The usual groups of children playing near the street were somehow absent on this, their first day off of the new school year. Yet as the day advances, the neighborhood is now once again alive with kids. They play near this very intersection, and many others in the area.

They do not have built-in safety features to protect them from collisions with anxious drivers. They cannot be replaced through insurance funds. Injury to them will rightfully bring a whole new dimension of remorse.

But for us, it is not yet too late. We know what we have to do: We have to slow the traffic on our side streets. We know from experience that people, good people, will not regulate their speed without traffic signs – and in this case, only stop signs will do.

And so we are imploring the City of Portland to install stop signs at S.E. Long and 48th, and on other well-used side streets – to prevent injury and death to our children. It is obviously right and necessary. And it’s not yet too late.

Peter Dyrhaug

Woodstock

via e-mail

Agrees with editorial

Editor,

I just read your assessment of the traffic issues in Westmoreland [“From the Editor”, August BEE] and couldn't agree more! It might seem like a gnat’s annoyance to some, but the poor intersection design at Bybee and Milwaukie is easily fixed by adding a left turn lane. If a few parking places need to be removed, who cares? The benefit will far outweigh the parking inconvenience. And YES to a pedestrian overpass at Reedway! Reed neighborhood access to Westmoreland would be a great addition. Thanks for being so spot on with your observations.

Michele Lytle

Eastmoreland resident

New principal making a mark at Holy Family

Editor, Holy Family Catholic School has just welcomed a new principal, Loretta Wiltgen, who immediately set to work updating the 65 year old building. New hallway flooring was installed, followed by new paint for the gym and the interior of the school, with teachers each choosing an accent color for their classrooms. The work was completed by professionals, helped greatly by the school's custodian Bert Morrison, teachers, and many parent and student volunteers. With one week remaining until classes resumed, much of the community turned out to finish the job by reassembling the classrooms. It’s going to be a great year.

Colleen Gilroy, parent

via e-mail

Knitters: Winter’s coming!

Editor, To Knitters and Crocheters of the Community: As the weather grows cooler, we of the Psalm 139 Prayer Shawl Ministry at All Saints Episcopal Church again invite you to join us in making hats and/or scarves to give to those in need. In late November or December we would like to give each of our Hot Meal attendees a hand knitted or crocheted hat and scarf. This project is a good way to use your yarn scraps and help someone less fortunate. There is a greater need for masculine colors than feminine colors. Because of your generosity last year, our project was a big success. Please help us again this year. You may drop your hats and/or scarves in the basket located in the church office (hours are Monday - Thursday 10:00 to 2:30). The address is 4033 S.E. Woodstock Boulevard.

If you would like to use some of our yarn scraps, or for more information, please call the church office coordinator, Cynthia Reynolds, at 503/777-3829 during office hours. Thank you to all of you knitters and crocheters!

Bev Curtis

Psalm 139 Prayer Shawl Ministry

All Saints’ Episcopal Church, Woodstock

Missing Manx cat

Editor, I am missing a green eyed MANX cat – no tail – cat which got out of my car after relocating from Salem to S.E. 16th and Claybourne in Westmoreland, near QFC, on July 25th. Flyers in this area have come down just after a couple days, even when I repost. If you know of anyone feeding such a cat, or who recently acquired such a noticeable cat, please advise me at 503/875-5066. Need assistance. She would jump through a bedroom window to come in and eat. She is skittish around strangers, but if hungry, just might make your acquaintance. There is no evidence of her being killed and I have checked the deceased records at Multnomah County. She may even have jumped into a vehicle. She got out after a vet visit for her shots. She was wearing a collar with ID which shouldn't have come off within just two days. She was not yet micro-chipped. There was construction going on around the block at the same time she went missing. She could have been transported out of the area. She is a torti (Black/Brown/Tan, no white), Manx, with what appears as NO TAIL, but is actually one vertebra. It’s now September…she is still missing. I hope someone reading THE BEE can help me find her.

“Miriam”

Westmoreland 503/875-5066

Students back from Latin American volunteer work Editor, “Amigos de las Americas (AMIGOS)” is proud to announce the return of 21 teenagers from 11 Portland metro area high schools, after another summer of service projects in Latin America – where they spent up to eight weeks. Among these were Medeline Banks, Noah Gerlach, Scout Ramos, Bree Simmons-Yager, and Zoe Walker Aparicio, all seniors at Cleveland High School. The community should be proud of them and the work they do, and any high school student interested in AMIGO service next summer might want to start by visiting: www.amigoslink.org/portland

Kathleen Miller S.E. 61st Avenue Victim of litter Editor, I am sure, as I write this, those of you that read THE BEE are not the ones that are throwing the leftover fast food, cigarette butts, glass bottles breaking, and many other gross things that litter my yard and driveway. Granted, I am in a location right on the turn off from McLoughlin Avenue, going west to the Sellwood Bridge. Usually cars are going so fast I wouldn’t think they would have time to throw junk out their windows, but they do. I wish I could catch someone in the act. Isn’t littering out your car window against the law? When I am done cleaning up the last bit, I think I will make a “NO GARBAGE” sign.

Susan Milholland via e-mail

EDITOR’S NOTE: Although the city now denies it, when that exit was constructed after the Tacoma overpass was built, there WAS a stop sign posted at the first cross street for those turning off McLoughlin. The stop line is still barely visible there, for those who look for it. THE BEE strongly believes that instead of the 30 MPH speed limit sign posted at that corner now, which encourages drivers turning off McLoughlin to continue across the intersection without any attention to the residential neighborhood at the corner, a stop sign should be returned to that location and the stop line should be repainted.

Thanks from Moreland Presbyterian Editor, Moreland Presbyterian Church would like to thank the neighborhood for their support of our September Food Drive. On Sept 15, families from the church canvassed our immediate neighbors while other neighbors dropped off food donations during the week. We were able to deliver 750 lbs. of food to FISH Emergency Services, a local organization that provides emergency food boxes to people in need from North, Northeast and Southeast Portland. Thanks neighbors for making the food drive a success!

Sarah Gibson, Director of Children's Ministries

Moreland Presbyterian Church

Friends of Trees

Editor, My name is Chris Dunning and I’ve just started volunteering for Friends of Trees as the Sellwood-Moreland neighborhood coordinator. I'm writing to alert people to the key dates for ordering and volunteering for the Sellwood-Moreland planting. My number is 971/404-8106 [for those who would like to know these dates]. Email also works well.

Chris Dunning This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

All letters to the editor are subject to editing for clarity and available space, and all letters become property of THE BEE.