A couple of days ago I heard the rotor of a medical flight, and it occurred to me the helicopter flying over represented an event that should be commemorated periodically and remembered for generations in these mountains.
Obtaining that medical service for this area required the efforts of several thousand people and they should all feel proud and responsible for having participated. I think of Pam, a clerk at a gas station/restaurant three miles south of Jackson who was given five blank petitions for signatures and told to call when she needed more and did call before the day was over. I think of Doris Adams, Ray Adams, and Buzz Adams, who attended innumerable meetings with officials, flight executives, and communities.
I think of then-Letcher County Judge/Executive Carroll Smith and then-State Representative Howard Cornett, who steered money into the effort. I think of the hundreds of coal miners who kept the petitions where people coming off shift could sign them, and how a large percentage of an eight-inchstack of roughly 20,000 signatures were made up of coal-smudged names. I also think of Miriam Fields, who individually collected thousands of signatures.
I suggest that anyone hearing one of those flights should take a second to reflect on one of the most unified efforts ever conducted in these mountains, and how it has benefited everyone who lives here. DEAN CORNETT Blackey