Letters to the editor – October 11th, 2017

Published 6:45 pm Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Another mass shooting

Editor, Smithfield Times
It’s sad to say it, but we’ve become numb to the news of another mass shooting.

“The New York Times” listed 28 major mass shootings in the past 10 years, starting with the Virginia Tech massacre. Another page listed almost daily mass shootings in America over the past 18 months. Last week’s attack in Las Vegas, leaving 59 dead and more than 500 wounded, is unique simply because of the record number of people killed and injured.

The shooter had amassed a ridiculous number of arms, ammo, and explosives.

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Although gun violence is not one of the Virginia Interfaith Center for Public Policy’s current priority issues, it has traditionally been an area where we have a stake as people of faith. VICPP continues to believe that better background checks and some restrictions on the kinds and quantities of guns would make us all safer. Our chapter in Blacksburg regularly remembers the Virginia Tech killings through an interfaith service.

Given the increasing number of shootings in the nation, we must find some agreement on common-sense reforms to limit the violence.

Praying for peace and justice,
Kim Bobo
Executive Director

Hang tags for vehicles

Editor, Smithfield Times
Historic Genuine Smithfield residents and Main Street merchants are fortunate to be able to enjoy first-hand the events and activities that take place frequently in the Historic District. That can also mean some challenges! The events affect everyone who lives and works in the Historic Area and especially those who live and work on Main Street, Mason Street and their “feeder” streets. Smithfield & Isle of Wight Tourism truly appreciates the sacrifices that residents make to promote our town as “Tourist Friendly” and is working hard to manage the successes that Smithfield events have enjoyed.

Toward that end, Smithfield & Isle of Wight Tourism has created a Historic District Resident and Business “Hang Tag” (similar to a handicapped tag that hangs from vehicles’ rear view mirror). This tag is to be utilized on vehicles during street closures so that the Smithfield Police Department and event officials can recognize motorists as an official “resident” (either home or business). Each “Hang Tag” will have the resident’s address listed on it. The tag enables residents to access their driveway or off-street parking area during set up and breakdown times of events. Due to safety concerns, they will be required to have cars off the street during the actual event. Please alert the Smithfield P.D. or Tourism Office at 357-5182 to report visitor violations.

Residents who do not already have one can pick up their “Hang Tag” at the Visitor Center at 319 Main Street. The Visitor Center is open Monday through Saturday 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. and Sundays from noon – 4 p.m. A maximum of three tags per household will be given. Additional consideration will be given to business owners at their request.

It truly takes a Village to become one of the most desirable destinations in Virginia. Thank to the residents and businesses for being an integral part of that village!

Judy Winslow
Director of Tourism

Thanks to businesses

Editor, Smithfield Times
I would like to take a moment to thank all of the Smithfield and surrounding area businesses that supported Freedom Hunters through donations to our recent “Party in the Parking Lot” fundraiser held Oct. 1 in Chesapeake. The amazing support received from these businesses will help provide no cost outdoor adventures to our nations true heroes, those that serve in our military and their families. The support from the Smithfield area businesses was unbelievable, with nearly 90 percent of those businesses asked in the Smithfield and surrounding area, providing donations that were used in our live and silent auctions.

A big Freedom Hunters “thank you” goes out to: 

Amicus Curiae, AJ Gators, Best Cuts, Beyond Main, Bon Vivant, Bubba-N-Franks BBQ, Cockeyed Rooster, Capt. Chuck A Mucks, Hairworx, Hampton Inn, Harmony Nail Spa, Isle of Wight County Museum, Isle of Wight Tourism Bureau, J Davis Salon, Langley FCU, Subway, Todd Rose Insurance Agency, Ms. Kathy Mountjoy, Olympia Sports, Perfectly Natural Soaps, Q Daddys BBQ, Ringos Donuts, Smithfield CenterSmithfield Family Dentistry,, Smithfield Christmas Store, Smithfield Detailing and Pressure Washing, Smithfield True Value, Ultimate Tan, Wharf Hill Brewing, Wilcox Bait & Tackle, XC Nails and Old Dominion Guns.

Thank you once again for your very generous support to our mission. I ask that everyone remember to support those that support the individuals who are protecting your freedoms, and the freedoms of those around the world, when making your purchases here in the Smithfield area. I hope that even more of our local businesses will support our cause next year!

Bud DePlatchett
Freedom Hunters

Backing DeGroft

Editor, Smithfield Times
During my tenure on the Hardy Elementary School PTA, I met Herb DeGroft. He was serving as the Hardy District School Board Representative. Since that time, I have had the opportunity to experience Mr. DeGroft’s dedication to our community. His pride and commitment to Isle of Wight and all its interests is very impressive.  

Mr. DeGroft would serve the Hardy District well as our representative on the Isle of Wight Board of Supervisors.  He is a fiscal conservative who will always spend our tax dollars with caution and consideration. He is well aware of the importance of an outstanding school district and well maintained Emergency Services. He knows the importance of working together to achieve a common goal — to make Isle of Wight a solid investment for all of us.

Please get out and vote on Tuesday, Nov. 7.

Rhonda Clark