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Wahl to Wall: Finding the true Christmas spirit

Paul Wahl is editor of the Chieftain.

Published on December 20, 2017 10:08AM


This is our Christmas edition. You’ll find one tradition in a special section in this week’s printed version. Santa letters are always heart-warming. I hope you enjoy them as much as we did bringing them to you. Thanks to all of the teachers who participated.

I got wind this week of several good things people had done, and I decided to share those in my Christmas column. After all, what’s more in the Christmas spirit than doing something for your fellow man.

The first one came from Lorri Fischer, an instructor in the Enterprise School District. You may have read the story we did about Hannah-Kate Sheehy having the lead role in a recent Elgin Opera House production. She is a student at Enterprise Elementary.

In recognition of her performance, Lorri told me during one of the performances, her classmates traveled to Elgin to cheer her on and then presented her with roses in a special ceremony onstage.

“It was a magical night,” Lorri said.

I can only image how special for both the students and Hannah-Kate. It’s an experience these children will remember for the remainder of their lives.

The second recognition goes to Claire Webb, a student at Joseph High School. She is a member of the school’s FCCLA Club, which conducts a wreaths and greenery fundraiser each year.

Claire was honored recently for having sold an amazing $1,463 worth of product for the sale, which one school official told me was a record high for individual sales in the past 25 years.

She did an outstanding job. Claire, when Jennifer Powell in the Chieftain advertising sales department decides to retire, there me a job for you.

In addition to being a crack salesperson, Claire also attended Oregon Leadership Institute and is working on an FCCLA project with the Humane Society.

Way to go, Claire!

I have slightly fewer details on the third Christmas spirit award. A gentleman called the office shortly after the Dec. 6 edition was published. He had just read the amazing story about the friends of Kathy Jenkins and their quest to purchases eSight glasses for her.

He attempted to use the online link mentioned in the article to donate; however, it didn’t work.

We had carefully checked the address to be sure it was correct, but what we didn’t count on was the computer system that justifies our columns having a mind of its own. It decided to break the URL and inserted a standard dash, which looks for all the world like it is part of the address.

This was an individual who does not live in Wallowa County. He was so determined to donate to a good cause, he went to all the work of calling us to get the correct information. We called him back and provided it with our apologies.

Now that is the Christmas spirit if ever I have seen it. Most people would have figured, well ... I did my part and it didn’t work so I’m off the hook. Here’s wishing all of our readers a Merry Christmas. May your days be merry and bright.



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