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Guest Column: Stop and say ‘thank you’ this holiday season

Michele Young is city administrator of the City of Enterprise.

Published on November 28, 2017 2:50PM

Michele Young

Michele Young

Several years ago I, along with other cities throughout the state, received a letter from a very nice gentlemen from Portland State University thanking all of the public servants during the holiday season. It was such a nice letter and I never forgot it.

Every year around this time, I thank about that letter, and I want to continue that heartfelt thank you.

So here is my thank you, and I am sure you will agree.

I would like to thank the road crews for keeping our roads open and safe while everyone is traveling during the holiday season. While you are driving to visit your family and friends, these folks are on call and quite often pulled away from their families to gravel streets and highways, plow snow and clear accident scenes. This includes ODOT, county and city road departments.

I would like to thank our law enforcement and dispatchers who really never get a holiday, they work around the clock helping those who lock their keys in their car while shopping, get a flat tire or just need directions. They also are called out by dispatchers for crimes that tend to increase during the holidays and respond to the many accidents on the roads due to inclement weather.

I would like to thank the health care professionals who also are always on call and or working to help you when you are sick or injured. They are always there for you in your time of need whether it be the EMTs, nurses, aides, lab, X-ray, doctors, cooks and office staff.

Someone is always available while you are with your families during the holidays. I have to add that I was so appreciative the other day when I witnessed hospital maintenance staff graveling their parking lots when it was slick. Thank you.

I would like to thank the fire departments for so quickly responding to accidents and fires, especially when you just sat down to eat with your family and boom, the call comes. Thank you for coming to our aid always.

I would like to thank the public works departments for leaving their homes to help get water to your home because your pipes froze or check the sewer lines because your toilets aren’t flushing. This happens frequently during the holidays.

They too have families they are spending the holidays with, but they come when called. Thank you for that because during the holidays and the rest of the year, water and sewer are critical needs.

I would like to thank my office staff who get the angry calls during the day if the streets are slick, people don’t like the way the snow was plowed, water is frozen, sewer isn’t working or when the police didn’t respond immediately. We know these issues can be frustrating, but we really are here to help, and it can be difficult when being yelled at. I assure you that everyone is doing the best job possible to make sure your needs are met. Sometimes a little thank you goes a long way.

I would like to thank our department of human services and Safe Harbors who often see the worst during the holidays. They are also on call all of the time to help children and adults who need their help. Abuse is a horrible thing, thank you for being there and getting them the help they need.

I have to give a big thank you to the stores and restaurant owners and their clerks who work so hard during the holidays to make your shopping and eating a great experience. Their staff quite often see the worst in people, as we all tend to get impatient during this season. These folks are exhausted by the end of the holiday season, please be kind to them.

I would like to thank the many volunteers who do so much during the holidays. There are so many people to thank in this category so I will just say thank you. Your role as a volunteer is so very important, and I just want you to know you are appreciated.

If I have left anyone out, it was not intentional. Please be kind to others while out during the holidays. The services provided to you from all of these various public servants are quite often taken for granted.

Please take a moment when they come to your aid and say thank you, their family is home waiting for them to return while they are helping you during this busy holiday season.

Drive carefully, and be safe during the holidays, give thanks every day for the many things that you have and are provided.

Michele Young is city administrator of the City of Enterprise.


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