From the pages of
The Sublette County Journal
Volume 4, Number 12 - 11/18/99
brought to you online by Pinedale Online

Who Really Makes an Impact

Time Magazine has conducted a poll over the Internet the past several months to determine which person has, for better or worse, most influenced the course of history over the past 100 years.

I'm dismayed to see that Elvis Presley, who just edged out Yitzhak Rabin for first place, had the most impact on this century's history. Mother Teresa at #13 in the poll is one step ahead of Madonna and Franklin D. Roosevelt's standing of #20 is behind Princess Diana, who rated a #19. Obviously, the entertainers of the world have more influence on more people than world leaders like Pope John Paul II (#7) and Winston Churchill who rates #15.

There's no questioning the influence Hitler had on this century, and the poll bears this out. He rated #3. But when I see the automobiles that move the population around, I wonder how Henry Ford can only make it to #12. And, what about Einstein? His contribution to the world only gave him a #5 standing in this poll.

Now to the point of this observation - it was refreshing to hear Senator Craig Thomas comment about the group of people who he thought really influenced history in this century. Senator Thomas paid tribute to the veterans who've won the wars of this century and to the men and women who lost their lives in those wars, when he spoke to veterans and their wives at the American Legion dinner in Big Piney last Thursday.

Senator Thomas, a former Marine, spoke at the American Legion Post No. 78 dinner in Big Piney on Veteran's Day. He recognized that veterans fought and died for our freedom and emphasized the need for military power to keep that freedom. He said that our Armed Forces are a responsibility of our government and it is also government's responsibility to make the Armed Forces attractive enough to draw volunteers to serve in the military.

After outlining what is happening in Congress, Senator Thomas told the group he believes in and tries to work for less government and more personal freedom. Gordon Mickelson presented Senator Thomas with a pin from the American Legion and Keith McNinch, Commander of Dee Fox Post #78, gave him a copy of A Doctor's Story by Dr. William Close.

The American Legion's District Commander, Bill Wilburn, and his wife attended the dinner. Mr. Wilburn encouraged veterans to use the outreach medical facility in Green River whenever they need the service as an alternative to going the distance to a Veteran's Hospital.

Keith McNinch presented Paul Scherbel with a plaque, which expressed the gratitude of the Legion members for his long service as Adjutant.

Bill Barney, Bill Kehr, Rudy Landrum, and Gene Aliff were sworn in as new members of the American Legion Post. The American Legion Auxiliary grew by ten new members: Shirley Looney, Nedra Aliff, Rose Gordon, Carrie Budd, Ann Barney, Marilyn McNinch, Lucy Kehr, Betty Findlay, Ada Landrum, and Helena Linn.

Emcee Bob Looney outlined some of the projects - scholarships, honor guard for parades and funerals, donations to the Food Closet, and sponsorship of Boy's and Girl's State - which the local Post and Auxiliary fund and sponsor. One girl went to Girl's State this past year and three boys attended Boy's State. It was a special honor that Chris Brown from LaBarge was chosen to attend Boy's Nation.

I don't think I'll pay attention to the poll. I've never heard of Linus Torvalds, who rated #16 and John Lennon (#11) may have had a big influence on many people's lives but I wouldn't recognize him if I saw him. However, I do know a lot of veterans and I treasure the freedom they bought for all of us. Thank you to Dee Fox Post #78 and the Auxiliary for keeping things in perspective.

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Copyright © 1999 The Sublette County Journal
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The Sublette County Journal, PO Box 3010, Pinedale, WY 82941   Phone 307-367-3713
Publisher/Editor: Rob Shaul