Letters to the Editor for June 11

Missing Mike

Lots of great people have passed lately, but I want to praise one who might have been missed by some of our community who never had the luck of having him repair their chain saws or gardening machines: Mike Kroeger, of M-K Motors of Odell.

I actually moved to the Odell area (1986) after buying a saw from him on the phone from Virginia where I lived at the time. I was looking for a house with land for a horse, from Lyle to West Linn, and had forgotten where I knew the name “Odell,” but I knew something about it was very fine — another story.

Mike was a truly great person and everybody who knew him knew that much.

Not only was he excellent at all I ever saw him try, but as an inspirational human being, Mike’s attitude toward his very serious medical problems (cancer and heart problems from his radiation) and toward work in the woods kept me coming back for sharpenings and just to hang out and listen.

When Mike fixed something, from my experience and that of the guys I knew, it stayed fixed.

His one flaw, if you can call it that, was he was so trusting and generous he could be taken advantage of. But it’s hard to say somebody “trusted too much,” isn’t it?

Odell for a while had one of the best collections of business owners anywhere: Mike at MK, Butch Gehrig, Conrad Nielsen, the Alleys and Art Magaña made it a rare and wonderful place to go for so many things you need.

Mike Kroeger was a truly great man, and I miss him.

Bob Williams

Hood River


I am extremely concerned that the Hood River News would publish a letter which clearly says that, in the opinion of the author, somebody’s national background and religious affiliation is significant as to what that somebody or his business does or does not choose to do on Memorial Day! (Re: “Why not Memorial Day?” Our Readers Write, June 4.)

Additionally, I thought the policy was to not publish material critical of a private business, much less an individual’s religious preference.

Or, as we teenagers used to say: “What does this have to do with the price of beans?”

Dave Dockham

Hood River

Credit due

In regards to the Young Voices article on June 4: It was a nice article by Joel (Aberg), but I feel that he forgot to thank the most important person — my mom, Leslie Melby.

He would not have landed in the Northwest thru EF without her. She is the one who gives her all to making sure all the exchange students have a wonderful Hood River experience. She picks the students, searches for families, and follows through with them the entire time they are in the states. To her it’s not a job; it’s her passion.

This journey started in the mid 1980s when she hosted students from Tsuruta, Japan, our wonderful Sister City, and that has since turned into her desire of showing off the town and community that she was born and raised in because she is so proud of it.

She not only brings these young men and women into the area, she also opens her home to these wonderful young ones. Some of them that I had the opportunity to meet and get to know are Yukako, Junko, Mizaho, Mario, Martine and Larissa.

There are more and she has been at it so long that I can’t keep track of all who have entered her life, but she remembers them. Many have come back to visit as adults with their new families. They not only want to show their family what a wonderful person she is but to show them how beautiful Hood River is.

A few years ago she had an EF student living with her while she was in Hood River. Mom came out to Iowa for Thanksgiving and brought this young lady with her. It turned out that a classmate from this young lady’s hometown was attending the same high school that I worked at and the two were able to catch up and spend some time together talking about their experiences in the United States.

Thank you, Mom, for all that you have done for all the students you have opened your heart and home to over the years. Thank you to the host families who have welcomed these students and also made them a part of your family. Thank you Hood River and surrounding areas for allowing these students to make wonderful memories.

Danelle Frank

Sioux City, Iowa

Retire Merkley

Why don’t you liberal moonbats ask Jeff Merkley to explain the ethics violations filed against him? Could it be that it’s because he has no possible defense?

Targeting the political opposition with the weight of the federal government is a cowardly act. And just one of the reasons I think Merkley is unfit to hold office in our great country.

He has voted for every illegal criminal alien amnesty bill, voted against bills to help veterans and voted for bills that destroy the American way of life in the name of “global warming.” And he has voted time and again to deny our Constitutional rights like those guaranteed by the Second Amendment.

Time to retire this socialist.

Cliff Mansfield


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