RIDGWAY--Karen Lundin, the force behind the Christmas Day Happening and Hearts for Hope, has a new challenge, bring Hometown Heroes to Ridgway.
Lundin spoke passionately to the July gathering of the Ridgway Borough Council about her desire to bring the Hometown Heroes banners to Ridgway. Steeped in emotion, Lundin explained the program to the Borough Council and gave examples of how the program has worked in other Elk County Communities. She has been inspired after the program was recently implemented to great effect in Fox Township, asking the council why "Ridgway, the County Seat, does not have this program when even a smaller community like Kersey has over 150 banners?"
The Fox Township program was begun in 2019 when the Elk and Cameron County Leadership program brought it to all the municipality's attention, with the program being implemented in St. Marys, Johnsonburg, and now Fox Township. Lundin went on to say that at least five members of her own family would qualify for the program, which has no direct cost to the Borough for the banners, with families and loved ones paying for the banners that would be hung. The only cost to the Borough would be for the annual placement of the banners in the spring and the taking down of them in the fall before the winter weather would damage them. In fact, the Fall and Winter decorations and banners could be rotated with the Hometown Heroes banners on a schedule. The Borough Council seemingly backed the proposal but referred the matter to the parking and streets committee for a meeting and a report to follow up on the presentation at the August meeting.
Police Chief Ralph Tettis, at one point, had to leave the Borough Council meeting to answer an emergency call. When he returned, he gave the stark news that Ridgway had just suffered its 10th drug overdose case this month. What was particularly angering about this case was that the victim today is the same drug user that had to be revived with Narcan on Sunday. The abuser, in little more than 24 hours, had to once again be revived with the lifesaving Narcan treatment. Chief Tettis warned all substance abusers in the area that a current batch of fentanyl-laced heroin is proving to be especially dangerous. Fentanyl is a synthetic opioid, produced almost exclusively in China, that is shipped into Mexico and then trafficked into the United States across the wide-open Mexican Border that the current presidential administration has enacted. Tettis referred residents to be on the lookout for signs of a fentanyl overdose, which they can identify by a combination of three symptoms known as the Opioid Triad. The triad consists of Pinpoint pupils, Unconsciousness, and Respiratory depression. Call 911 immediately if they have any indications of an overdose, as seconds can save lives.
The financial reports were accepted with no changes, and the bills were accepted for payment. The meeting adjourned at 8:45 p.m.
The next meeting of the Ridgway Borough Council will take place on August 16, at 7 p.m. at the West End Fire Hall. The public is invited to attend.