Mark’s Musings – February 14, 2018

| February 12, 2018

Mark Fortune

Our world is filled with negativity and the constant influx of bad news. School shootings, tragedies and the senseless deaths of law enforcement officers occupy the news. Our thoughts and prayers go out to the families and loved ones of the two Westerville police officers who were killed while responding to a domestic call over the weekend. It is a stark reminder that the job of law enforcement is dangerous and carries no guarantees of a safe homecoming to loved ones. This should not be the case of course.

Parents, children and loved ones should not have to wonder when they put their kids on the bus whether they will come home that afternoon and certainly the loved ones of a deputy, police officer, state trooper and other first responders should not have to worry about such random acts of violence taking a life. The streets of America are not a war zone.

With so much negativity reported across print, broadcast, electronic and social media outlets around the country one might be left wondering if there is anything positive remaining. We are pleased to report that there is.

Our very own community is filled with more positive happenings and actions than we can report on. Prime examples were the recently held Chocolate Extravaganza and the upcoming Coshocton County Career Center Open House. This week is National FFA Week and The Beacon celebrates the accomplishment of many of our local youth with a section devoted to the Ridgewood and River View FFA programs and the Coshocton County Career Center Natural Resources program. Talented youth, advisors and lessons learned in responsibility and leadership abound.

Coming up pretty quickly is the kickoff of the new 4-H program year. Hundreds of Coshocton County youth participate in this program and gain valuable leadership skills, responsibility and work ethic. Expand your youngster’s horizons with Public Speaking and other opportunities and you have helped prepare a solid future for your child.

A positive and uplifting program that is quickly gaining steam in Coshocton and surrounding communities is the Fellowship for Christian Athletes. This past weekend local teens and adults were able to enjoy an evening of pizza, fellowship and great music at Coshocton High School and then had the privilege of listening to a young woman’s story of love, sadness, courage, illness, and leaving a legacy. 2012 River View graduate and elementary school teacher Michaela Elson held the young audience spellbound as she recounted her story and encouraged those in attendance to “build people up every day”.

With life experiences well beyond her 24 years, Michaela could very well give a TED talk, and more importantly can easily provide inspiration to those well beyond her years. Our community is blessed to have this special young woman in our midst.

Michaela is an example of how someone, when faced with loss, hurt and illness, summons the courage to live each day with a mile wide smile on her face and be an inspiration to others. To quote Michaela, “By the grace of God.”

Category: Mark's Musings, Opinion

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