UP: To Senior State Trooper Brad Lowe for earning the Superintendent Award, the West Virginia State Police's highest honor. Lowe, a Williamstown native and son of Wood County 911 Director Randy Lowe, is stationed at the Logan detachment. During 2012, Lowe completed 177 criminal investigations, made 86 felony arrests, 225 misdemeanour arrests and confiscated $994,000 worth of illegal drugs. Congratulations to Senior Trooper Lowe for his service to the citizens of West Virginia.
UP: To Tom Knopp, director of Good Samaritan Center in Kenova, who is participating in a one-man attempt to "walk out hunger in West Virginia." During the next 67 days, Knopp hopes to raise $10,000 in each of West Virginia's 55 counties to benefit food pantries. Knopp, who was in Wood County this past Thursday, hopes his walks - generally 25 miles - will draw awareness and raise money for hunger in West Virginia. The money he raised in Wood County will go to the Mountaineer Food Bank.
UP: To all of the volunteers who give their time to help make this area a better place to live. These many volunteers were honored this past Monday evening in Vienna at the United Way Alliance of the Mid-Ohio Valley's 2013 Volunteer Recognition Dinner. Congratulations to these special people.
UP: To the students at Edison Middle School who are taking part in the F.O.R. Club (Friends of Rachel). The club is an anti-bullying program named for Rachel Scott, the first person killed in the Columbine High School shootings in Colorado on April 20, 1999. The Edison students are spreading kindness through several targeted acts, such as making new students feel welcome at the school, talking with students who are sitting alone and even baking cookies for area firefighters and law enforcement officers.
DOWN: To the continuing congressional stalemate that is adversely affecting government operations and citizens. Republicans, Democrats and the president need to stop the politicking and come to a reasonable compromise.