This past weekend the Squire traveled to Mackinac City, Michigan to participate in the 52nd annual Labor Day Big Mac Bridge Walk. Just after the 7 a.m. start of the walk, Squire reporters Cliff and Nancy Hill hooked up with avid Squire reader Michigan Governor Jennifer Granholm. Ever gracious and not missing a step, the “Guv” accepted a copy of a Squire featuring front page coverage of the 50th anniversary walk on Labor Day 2007. This being our eighth consecutive Labor Day Bridge Walk, your reporters established a new personal best time for the five-mile crossing at one hour and five minutes. (Not bad, huh?) Upon crossing the finish line, each and every one of the day’s 49,000 participants was awarded a numbered certificate signifying that on this day they had “Walked across the World’s Greatest Bridge. Our particular certificates were numbered 375 and 376. We won’t tell you which of us crossed the finish line first.
Articles by Squire News
Rockford trooper’s work collected in memories Your family photo album likely contains happy pictures of a youngster eating spaghetti for the first time, the school field day, a series of birthdays. For Rockford Michgian State Police Trooper Carol Meyer, her family is a different type and her pictures aren’t of children going to their first day of school. Meyer said law enforcement is a career like no other, and in 22 years at her job, she has books of experience and stories to tell. Meyer has been collecting pictures of her law enforcement “family” for years, and compiles an ongoing series of photo albums to commemorate her work and those of her colleagues on the force. “I love it. I can’t imagine doing anything else,” she stated, showing off her books. Meyer allowed the Squire an “insider’s look” at her law enforcement life. Meyer said the Michigan State Police allows officers to do different jobs throughout the years. She’s has been on the drug team, leaning out of open helicopter doors to search for hidden patches of marijuana in crop fields in Operation Hemp. She has trained on how to legally ram a car to disable it during a high-speed chase, and has a close friend who is a D/Sgt. that supervises the Kent Metro Cold Case Team. “It is very much a family,” she said of the profession. “We mostlydon’t spend time with friends who aren’t officers, we spend time with other troopers and their wives and families.” Meyer is still in a minority group as a female in a male-dominated profession. “They treat us well. Whatever the guys have to do, we have to do, too. We wouldn’t want it any other way,” Meyer said. She believes law enforcement is a fine career for a woman as well as a man, and here in Rockford she is one of four female troopers. Her friend who supervises the cold case team is also a female officer. Currently, Meyer is a court officer. “When they [other troopers] arrest someone, I take if from there,” she said. “I get the subpoenas, see the judges, and take care of the warrants. Once the court stuff is done, I get to play.” By “play,” she means […]
‘If you really want to accomplish something, you can do it’ Riana Hain-Gachiri, 13, may have a future in the world of art. The student who began her second year at North Rockford Middle School (NRMS) this week, has earned a full-ride scholarship to Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp and has also had her work chosen for display at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. Riana was highly recommended by her art teacher, Rachel Kibbe, who gave the girl a glowing review. “Riana is creative, hard-working and talented,” Kibbe said. “Riana is not only exceptional in terms of her artworks, she is a natural leader and encourager.” Riana was in Kibbe’s painting and sculpture class at NRMS. “I think it is inspiring,” said Riana’s mother, Alison. “If you really want to accomplish something, you can do it.” Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp has been mentoring young artists for 43 years and is known as a prestigious institution. Being accepted and having the school cover the tuition is an incredible achievement. Alison Hain gives credit to the Rockford school system. “It shows what a fine school North Rockford Middle School is,” she said. “Riana just loves her school and her teachers.” Riana’s painting will be displayed at the University of Michigan for the month of July 2010. Carol Tice, art department director at Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp, said the display will be in an exhibit which is part of the “Experience Blue Lake” celebration, showcasing art by the students of the camp. Kibbe said, “Riana would be a fantastic addition to any art camp. Her kindness, talent and work ethic make her a delightful student.”
Sweetheart Splash, art event benefit local families in need Sandy Waite, director of the North Kent Service Center, recently visited Rockford Rotary Club to thank the service organization for generous donations made over the years. She said need requested from the center is at an all-time high and each donation helps a local family that is in financial difficulties. “In 2005, your generous donation of $10,000 was designated to be used by our clients who needed assistance in paying utility bills,” she said. “Money spent on our clients utility needs in 2006 and 2007 was $3,938 and $5,717, respectively, with the balance of $759 used in January 2008.” Waite said the Rockford Rotary donation of $500 in 2008 was used to purchase a variety of meat averaging 50 cents per pound. The donation allowed the center to buy approximately 1,000 pounds of chicken, sliced hams and other meat to stock the food pantry. In 2008 the center distributed 739,000 pounds of food. The 2007 Art Gala, jointly organized by four local Rotary groups including Rockford’s, and held in the Wolverine World Wide corporate offices, raised $17,000 for the center. That money, Waite said, was used for operational expenses, such as the building mortgage, electric, heat, waste removal and gas for company vehicles. Waite reported that utilities for the center are approximately $30,000 per year. “Your donation helps keep our facility up and running so we are able to service our families,” she said. In the past four years, Sweetheart Splash, also a Rockford Rotary event, raised $10,790. “As you can see, there is always a financial need here at the North Kent Service Center,” Waite said. “The Rockford Rotary has played a significant role in allowing us to continue ‘Helping Our Neighbors in Need.’”
12th Joyce Blakeslee, Chad English, Glenn Knox, Al Pedley 13th Florence Cooley, Aunt Barbara Gardiner, Matt Palmer, Sandy Wybranowski 14th Goldie Ellenwood, Uncle Joe Gardiner, Lindsey Ray 15th Wendy Harr, Bonnie Hyder 16th Joyce Bolthouse, Sheryl Deyoung, Wilma Ingham, Colin Kalemba, Allyson Meester 17th Kellie M. Mackie 18th Nate Brown, Gil Clark, Jaden DeVogel, Susan Eckert, Mike Moore, Phyllis TenBrink 19th Paul Krupp, Haley Pilgrim, Roberta Sheils