Sandoval Signpost

An Independent Monthly Newspaper Serving the Community since 1988

The Gauntlet

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Signpost Cartoon c. Rudi Klimpert

letters, opinions, editorials

re: an open letter to Mid Region Council of Governments (MRCOG)


The unincorporated community of Placitas is politically and geographically central to MRCOG’s future plans for transportation and infrastructure. With over 6,000
people and 230 square miles, the Placitas area is the type of thriving community that should be given a strong voice in MRCOG’s future plans.

However, many would be shocked to learn that the 30 member MRCOG board of directors has found a way to include two members from Sandoval County, two members from the Town of Bernalillo, two members from the Village of Corrales, two members from the Village of Cuba, two members from the Village of Jemez Springs, two members from the City of Rio Rancho, one member from the Rio Rancho Public Schools, and even one member from the Southern Sandoval County Arroyo Flood Control Authority (SSCAFCA) without finding a way to include a single member from Placitas.

When contacted, MRCOG stated that Placitas is represented on the board.

According to MRCOG, Placitas is represented by the two members from Sandoval County. So who represents Placitas? Don Leonard from Corrales and Glen Walters from Rio Rancho. You have got to be kidding.

If MRCOG wants to be seen as a truly representative organization, they need to find a way to expand the MRCOG board to include two members from Placitas.

—Charles Mellon, Placitas

re: in memory of Kevin Michael Sewell

Kevin Michael Sewell of Eunice and Placitas, NM, passed away on November 19, 2010, at the Medical Center Hospital in Odessa, TX, following a brief illness.

Kevin was born on November 23, 1954, in Burlingame, CA. Kevin was a general contractor in the Albuquerque area until a debilitating accident. He then moved to Eunice 3 years ago to begin operating his Full of Bull BBQ and Catering Service, on the URENCO site.

Kevin is survived by his wife, Tempi, his daughter Stephanie Mueller and husband Chad, by three grandchildren, Cy, Mia and Finn Mueller, and by his newly reunited family including his brother Bill Otis and wife Sue, and his sister Andrea Otis.

There will be a celebration of Kevin’s life to be held at the home of Dale and Sue Spenser at 772 Hwy 165, on Saturday December 11, at 2:00 p.m. Everyone is invited.

re: in memory of Jeanne Army

Jeanne P. Army, a Placitas resident for 42 years, passed away on October 25. Jeanne was born in Mulberry, Indiana and lived there for 30 years. She married James Army and had her four children (Leah, Nick, Dana and Garrett) while living in Indiana. Jeanne was married to James for 53 years. He was an over the road truck driver, which eventually brought them to Albuquerque in 1964 because there was work. After 6 months they saw an ad for a house for rent in Placitas, and after moving the family she became a school bus driver for the Bernalillo Public Schools for 20 years. Even though she was part of the Army Nurses Corps in 1944, she considered school bus driving to be her favorite job where she watched many of the children who rode on her bus grow up and occasionally drove their children too. In the 60’s she and many others helped dismantle a building at Kirkland AF Base. The group brought the pieces to Placitas, took out the nails and reassembled the building into the first Placitas Volunteer Fire Department. Several of the people who built the building became volunteer firefighters. A grant was received which covered a used fire engine. Jeanne was a long-time Elder, choir member, and clerk of session at the Las Placitas Presbyterian Church since 1968. She touched all who knew her and will be greatly missed. She is survived by sisters, Mary Bennett, Joanne Dellinger, Susan McIntosh; and her brother John Peter; her daughter Leah Army-Gragert; sons, Nicholas, Dana, and Garrett Army; Jeanne was the grandmother of seven grandchildren; eleven great-grandchildren; and one great-great-grandchild. Memorial service will be at the Placitas Presbyterian Church on December 4, 2010 at 11:00 a.m. A potluck will follow the service at the church.

re: in memory of Kenneth R Kwapich

KWAPICH -- Kenneth R Kwapich, retired United States Air Force, Medical Service Corp, officer, was born in Toledo, Ohio on June 1, 1931 and passed away in Albuquerque, NM on Sunday, November 21, 2010 at the age of 79. Ken is survived by his wife, Mary O. Kwapich; sister, Alice Spath; children, Matthew Kwapich and wife Cherilyn; Judy Kwapich Madril and Christopher Kwapich; as well as other friends and family who loved and will miss him. He was preceded in death by his parents Stephen Kwapich and Frances Wirzikoski Kwapich; brother Melvin Kwapich; and sister Rosemary Joyce. Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at Our Lady of Sorrows Parish, 301 Camino del Pueblo, Bernalillo, NM on Thursday, December 2, 2010 at 10:00 a.m. In leu of flowers, if so desired, make a donation to your favorite charity. A private burial will follow at the National Cemetery. Arrangements by Direct Funeral Services, 2919 4th St, NW, Abq, NM 87107. 505-343-8008.

re: those people

“I am a Right Wing Extremist American and Proud of it.” On a T-shirt, on a body, but not mine. I was a poll worker at my precinct in Placitas on election day, November 2, 2010. I was pleased to be actively involved in the electoral process and to be serving in my community. Not all, however, was uplifting on that day. One campaigner sat across from our polling place (101 feet from the poll-as was his right) with a fierce-looking dog by his car and a gun on his hip. I ask, Is this the Placitas I have grown to love? Is this the United States of America I have loved all my life, for its promise of freedom, life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness? I believe our precious Constitution intends inclusion. That man has a right to carry his gun; he has a right to have his dog, but I found it inappropriate and could not understand the purpose of including either at a polling location in the United States of America, except as a means of intimidation or provocation. But why intimidation? Why provocation? I am deeply saddened to know that this kind of thinking is among us.

I was and am disappointed at the inappropriate actions to which some of our neighbors have lowered themselves, as they exhibited their lack of dignity, integrity, and self respect. Fear and hate are prevailing as opposed to compassion and understanding. Neither fear nor hatred will move us forward as Americans nor will they make us stronger members of the world community. On the contrary, fear and hatred tend to blind us from seeing ourselves and expressing the love that is our core.

I heard several campaigners say, "We are going to take our country back," and I wondered, silently, "How far back do they want to take us?" Back to our deepest recession in history? Back to pre-women voting? Back to the time when only gentried White men could vote? Back to pre-Blacks voting? Back to pre-Native Americans voting? Back to pre-Hispanics voting? Back to Jim Crow days? Back to slavery? Just how far back are they wanting to take us?

 I am extremely grateful for the beautiful people in my life and in this community who love peace and who demonstrate their love for our nation, for our potential, our promise, and our constructive pursuits. Thanks for being among those people.

—Doris Fields, Ph.D., Placiteña

Brandon Barber

re: Brandon Patrick Barber

Congratulations are in order for Brandon Patrick Barber, PV2, who completed Basic Training for the Army National Guard and has finished his ATC training at Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri.

Brandon is the grandson of Daniel and Lydia Roybal of Bernalillo. His mother and stepfather, Katherine Roybal-Nunez and Felix Nunez, live in Albuquerque. Father Dennis Barber lives in Santa Fe.

Brandon has ties to the town of Bernalillo, where he has participated in the San Lorenzo fiestas for the past six years.

PV2 Barber is enrolled at New Mexico Military Institute (NMMI) in Roswell, which he will begin attending in January 2011.





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