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Some Thoughts While Stuck In My House

     Dear Paul:

     Some thoughts while stuck in my house.

     • New York City is like the nation’s largest cruise ship. Decatur is like a pontoon boat (with just 3 aboard). Should we treat both the same?

     • America survived the 400,000 deaths in WWII. America could not survive without the ability to be the Arsenal of Democracy. America’s economic might is equal to America’s freedom.

     • If America in 1789 was just as risk averse as America in 2020, would there be any Americans west of the Appalachian Mountains?

     • How many people shelter in place three weeks before the Tornado Warning is issued?

     • The virus does not climb in through your window. How is America going back to work going to harm those who volunteer to remain home?

     • How many potholes will Decatur have after two months of reduced city sales tax receipts? How many citizens will not complain about them to Mayor Moore-Wolfe for the rest of the year?

     • We keep Asian Carp out of Lake Decatur with a physical barrier. This is impossible for people living in a free society and so is any notion of keeping COVID-19 out of Macon County.

John Hauge,  Mount Zion

Bruce Pillsbury Does Not Deserve to be Re-Elected as Macon County Republican Party Chairman

Fellow Republicans,

     It pains me to write this letter in the midst of the worst health crisis in over 100 years, but due to the upcoming Macon County Republican Party Convention on April 15 where we vote for a new Macon County Republican Party Chairman, I am compelled to act.           

     In the last few days of the 2020 Republican Primary, our current Macon County Republican Party Chairman Bruce Pillsbury wrote a scathing newspaper editorial and even mailed out letters throughout District 7 smearing my son and me to endorse my son’s opponent in the County Board District 7 Primary race.

     In that letter, Bruce Pillsbury mentioned being a Precinct Committeeman for 35 years and Party Chairman since 2014. In my opinion, that letter was completely unfounded and filled with false statements to muddy the waters right before the primary election to confuse the primary voters.

     I firmly believe that it is completely unprecedented for the Macon County Republican Party Chairman to attack my family and me to help another “well-established” Republican candidate. I am a lifelong resident of Macon County, United States Marine Corp veteran, the former Republican Long Creek Township Tax Assessor for 19 years, former Republican County Board District 7 member for 10 years, and I am currently in my third term as Republican Macon County Treasurer.

     To date, I have 39 combined years of dedicated, ELECTED service to the Citizens of Macon County. What right does Bruce Pillsbury have to drag me through the mud and attempt to discredit my service to this County and to the Republican Party?           

     What has Bruce Pillsbury done for the greater good of this Party since 2014? The only time that I see Bruce Pillsbury is when he has his hand out asking me for money for the annual Lincoln Day Dinner. It has always been my observation that the personality and tenacity of the Republican candidates will lead to victory in the November General Elections. These victories have nothing to do with Bruce Pillsbury’s “leadership” as the Macon County Republican Party Chairman.

     Therefore, I am asking you to take a moment to reflect upon Bruce Pillsbury’s recent actions, and ask yourself if this is the character of person that we want to run and represent the Macon County Republican Party. If you are an active registered Republican voter in Macon County and interested in running for the Macon County Republican Party Chairman, please contact your local Republican Precinct Committeeperson or contact me directly at before April 15, 2020. Thank You,

Edward D. Yoder,

Macon County Treasurer, Oakley

Memories Of Safe, Wonderful, Clean Fun At The Roller Rink

Dear Paul:

     Past articles of Chaps Amusement Park remind me of the safe, wonderful, clean fun at the roller rink. As a teen, my dear friend, Doris Joynt, and I use to go to square dances on Saturday nights with my parents, Charles and Marie Workman. Then, on Sunday nights I got to go roller skating with treasured friends Philip, Lawrence, Don and Eleanor Sheets.

     Only laughable problem was having to go to school on Monday with white hair. Powder used to make the floor slippery for Saturday dancing was not completely cleaned up by Sunday and it would cling to our hair and clothes. I can’t imagine breathing that in now-a-days. My mother wouldn’t let me wash my hair that late at night because we had no hair drier so I’d go to school the next day with white hair.

     We’d also go to Danceland Roller Rink during the week. What a wonderful time of clean fun and, yep, exercising. Anyone remember getting Chicago Roller Skates as a top Xmas gift?

Bev Blakeman, Sarasota, Fl.

Thanks To Cpl. Gadbury, Family For Recognizing The Lives Of Those Who Were Lost

     Thanks to Cpl. Les Gadbury, Monticello, of Company C, 1st Battalion, 9th Regiment of the 3rd Marine Division and his great family for telling his story. Cpl. Gadbury recognized the lives of those who were lost: “They are the ones who deserve the acknowledgment and any due credit. I’ll never forget the sacrifices they and their families made.” The young people of today should study the sacrifices of these Marines where Cpl. Gadbury fought: Guadalcanal, 1600 killed, 4200 wounded, 3000 died of malaria, Bougainville, (Solomon Islands) 3763 Killed, 5500 wounded, Guam, 1700 Killed, 6000 wounded, Iwo Jima, 6800 Killed, 26,000 wounded.

     I was commanded by Officers and NCOs of the 8th Army Air Corp of WWII when I joined the Iowa Air National Guard 63 years ago at the ago of 17. Most died without telling their stories. There were 75,446 airmen (60 percent of operational airmen) were killed, wounded or taken prisoner. in the air war over Germany. I also had the privilege of working under Robert Gammage, States Attorney of DeWitt County, from Farmer City, who fought in WW II as a teenager with the 101st Airborne Division of Paratroopers (Band of Brothers) at Normandy, Market Garden (Holland) and the Battle of the Bulge at Bastogne. (Belgium).There were 19,000 Americans killed in the Battle of the Bulge from December 16, 1944 until January 25, 1945, the bloodiest American battle of WWII. Bob lived for which he fought as a strong supporter of the Bill of Rights.

     An honor salute to these patriotic men in our lives along with those who fought and died in Korea, Viet Nam, Iraq and Afghanistan.

Kenneth Baughman, Monticello

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Reprinted from the April 8th print and online edition of the Decatur Tribune

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