We all know that small towns have their own set of problems, and that ours is no exception. But I am here to tell you that if I am going to live in a small town, Ie can not imagine living anywhere else. This community, as a whole, is full of generosity beyond compare, and I am proud and honored to call it home.

Many of you are aware of various local efforts to support those in need as a result of Hurricane Harvey. Think back a couple of decades. Do you remember when we were in their shoes? Maybe since we’ve been there, we know the heartbreak of losing everything.

In the past week, we have seen our neighbors give in so many ways. Some with monetary donations; others with pet supplies, baby supplies, cleaning needs and everything in between.

There is one story in particular that I’d like to share. When I was working Saturday, a little boy about four or five comes in and buys a bar of soap. So as he hands me his dollar, I ask him if he was going to take a bath. He told me that no, it wasn’t for him. He earned this dollar by cleaning his room and he was giving this bar of soap to the people in Texas. After I told him how much that bar of soap was going to mean to a little boy or girl in Texas, he told me that he wanted to help because so many people helped him when his family had a fire. Now how’s that for hope for our future? What goes around comes around.

I just wanted to tell each and everyone of you that donated in any way, no matter how big or small, each and every contribution helps. Whether you gave of your time, supplied the much needed items of any type, or gave what you could — you should be proud. Proud of what you did and proud of what your neighbors did as well. I know I am. You can say what you want about our sleepy little valley, but if there is a need, no matter what that need might be, you will never ever find a place more willing to help.

MARY BENTON

New Bethlehem

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