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December 4, 2011
Salem News

Service member upset with getting ticket

To the editor: I am currently serving in Iraq, and will still be in Iraq after most of our military forces have left.

I was not going to comment on an occurrence that happened in Columbiana a few weeks ago, but the more I thought about it, the more I felt that I had to say something. I was home on leave from Iraq to visit my parents and had been looking forward to a round of golf with my father and two brothers, a perfect foursome! We were so excited to all be together again, and were talking up a storm when flashing lights appeared in the rearview mirror. You guessed it, Columbiana Police. We were not running late, were not in any hurry, but since I was driving and not used to my Dad's car or the local speed limits, I must have been traveling over the limit.

I explained to the young officer that I was home on leave from Iraq, and that my father, brothers and I were on our way to play golf, and apologized for not knowing the speed limit. As a paramedic and used to working side by side with law enforcement for 27 years, I expected a warning and a "have a nice day" from the officer, especially since he knew I was home on leave from Iraq.

When he returned to the car with a ticket, ($109), I was not only shocked, but stunned as well. Please don't misunderstand, I do not feel that I am above the law, but I do not knowingly speed in a car. The fact that I have not had an accident or been stopped in over 30 years of driving proves that. This young officer not only shot down the day for myself and family, but he shot down one of the good guys; a public servant who has served side by side with law enforcement here in the states for over 25 years, and is now serving as a remote duty medic in Iraq.

My advice to this young officer is number one: you don't have to write a citation on every person that you stop; and, number two: you need to be able to tell the difference between the good guys and the bad guys. That day, you shot down one of the good guys. My family and I are thankful that this time, you did it with your pen and not with your gun.

John Michael McGeehen, Umm Qasr, Iraq

Lisbon Chamber encourages buying from local merchants

To the editor: The Lisbon Area Chamber of Commerce would like to encourage everyone to buy locally whenever possible this Christmas. There are many gifts that would be greatly appreciated that are available in our own communities.

For example who wouldn't like a gift certificate for a hair cut, a meal out at a local restaurant, car wash coupons,car detailing or an oil change? There may be someone on your list who would like to try out a gym or take a class this winter. What about arranging for snow removal this winter or lawn care for next summer? There are local entertainment offerings that would make for a fun night out.

Our local merchants have great gift offerings in many price ranges. You can get anything from a pair of gloves to getting someone's driveway sealed. If you want something unique check out a craft show that is supporting both a non-profit organization and local crafters. Give the women in your life a break by giving a gift of a local cleaning service.

Try to think out-of-the-box this year giving gifts that will be appreciated and used. When we buy locally we are supporting those business that contribute to our community all through the year. They provide jobs and participate in community activities. These businesses make our towns the places we love and call home.

Remember to be generous when tipping those people who serve us and make our lives easier. The Lisbon Area Chamber of Commerce wishes you a blessed Christmas and remember to support your friends and neighbors by buying locally this year.

KATHY BARTON, President, Lisbon Chamber of Commerce, Lisbon, Ohio

Community Center offers thanks for race help

To the editor: The Salem Community Center would like to thank all race participants and sponsors who made our annual Post T-N-T 5k race a success on Saturday, Nov. 26.

Congratulations to our top three overall winners who were Trevor Popielec, with a time of 17.16; Herb Cratty, with a time of 18.29; and, Robert Fickert, with a time of 19.37. For more race results and photos, follow us on Facebook or visit our website at

We would like to give a special thanks to Donnell Ford, Salem Community Hospital, Salem Visiting Nurses, Silverio Physical Therapy, Stark Memorial, Butech Inc., Crowl Enterprises and Salem Radiology for sponsoring the race. Your support is greatly appreciated.

Dan Scarpitti, Salem



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