Letters to the Editor, Feb. 26

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Leave it to

BLEVE here

EDITOR: It seems strange to me that Sonoma County collects large sums for permits and inspections while building/remodeling a house to “ensure our safety” (i.e. fire code, egress windows, elevations, etc.), yet they allow the railroad to create the danger of a massive BLEVE (a boiling liquid expanding vapor explosion) caused by the rupture of one or more among the over 150 fully loaded LPG rail-tankers that have been parked here very close to many homes in Schellville all winter.

All without a permit or any safeguards, and apparently just so the railroad can make a profit. Maybe it is time for the folks in Sonoma to “rail” against the county.

Eileen Pharo


Here’s the good news…

EDITOR: Thanks to the “LOVE” art exhibit at the Plaza, my 2-year-old and a 5-year-old daughters have learned to read the word “love.” This is the first word that they both can read in any context; on any T-shirt, in any book at the library, on any Valentine’s Day card they received at school. My 5-year-old can write it without hesitation. It was heart warming to drive them back and forth through town everyday and hear them say “Look Mom! It’s LOVE” with a tone so excited, so pure, and so sweet. To have this word be their first read has been a gift. Thank you Sonoma for hosting “LOVE” and for sealing the most important word on this planet into my children’s minds and hearts.

Danielle Davila


And here’s the bad news…

EDITOR: The October 2018 report from the United Nations says we have only 12 years to transform our economy to preserve our planet before catastrophic planetary failure. We need a massive mobilization of every sector of society. If we do not make this happen, we are complicit in our demise.

Leslie Sheridan


Friends of Turkana still giving

Editor: Local nonprofit, Friends of Turkana, does not skim donor contributions for overhead (“Charity Expert: Rethink Your Views on Nonprofits,” Feb. 1).

Begun as a parish project, we “adopted” a medical mission in Turkana County in Kenya. A woman named Evangelist had opened a small dispensary to treat resettled famine families. Our donations supplied the means.

A missionary priest had begun an irrigation scheme in nearby Kaputir. Turkanas received food for work. Each family received an acre of land and the means to plant.

As correspondent, I exchanged monthly letters with Evange. She was 59. The people called her Akimat (old woman). They practiced native medicine and resisted change. Infant mortality was high. Childhood immunizations were unknown. A measles epidemic claimed many lives.

Evange bought a gasoline generator to pump water from a well into a community tank. Bought chickens from down-country to give the kids eggs.

Early one morning shots rang out as neighboring Pokots raided livestock. Women and children among the dead and wounded.

Bed care was needed. With riverbed sand, Rev. Mick Gannon built blocks for a health center. One day, Mick and eight budding soccer players drowned, crossing the Turkwell River. Joe, his father, came from Ireland to do the work his son began.

In 1978 we became a nonprofit, independent of the parish. Evelyn Berger did the banking. I wrote a monthly newsletter.

Evange urged me to visit. When I arrived in April 1981, Turkana was emerging from prolonged drought and famine. The 40-bed Kakuma hospital where Evange worked, had 116 inpatients. Our “adopted” mission at Kaputir (since renamed Nakwamoru) fared better. Sr. Canisius kept busy in the 18-bed health center we had furnished.

In Sonoma Bob Lynch gave the Turkana visit a full-page spread, my photos superimposed on a map of Africa. With the need documented, Friends of Turkana added members, making possible our support of Kakuma Mission Hospital. Inspired by others, Friends of Turkana continues giving.

June England


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