‘Besides the kids and grandkids, nothing was more important to them than the township’ by BETH ALTENA Jim McIntyre served Courtland Township first as a trustee from 1998 to 1992 and then as supervisor until his unexpected death in 2010. On Friday, Sept. 16, family members, firefighters and township and county officials joined in remembering the service of Jim and wife Kletis. The township dedicated Fire Station II in their honor with a ribbon-cutting unveiling a new sign, memorial and plaque. “Besides the kids and grandkids, nothing was more important to them than the township,” said son Doug. MaryAnn Anderson said she, current supervisor Chuck Porter and Jim all ran for office the same year in 1998. The dedication Jim and Kletis showed for their community was profound and made many improvements to the township possible. Porter said Jim had the qualities that make a supervisor successful, which are character traits that also make farmers successful. “He knew there is a time for planting and for harvesting,” said Porter. “He had honesty, humility, a strong work ethic, and was conservative financially. He had the principals to take chances and to take risks.” Porter used the example of the North Kent Sewer Authority as one risk McIntyre believed in, and also building the second fire station. “Because of his personality, things ran smoothly for the township,” Porter noted. He joked that there have been very few residents during the meetings under McIntyre’s reign, a sign of good leadership. Kletis was supportive of all the efforts of the township and always provided refreshments at events and decorated the township offices for holidays. She was the driving force behind a celebration of the township’s 150th birthday. Daughter-in-law Phylis McIntyre was touched deeply by the township’s desire to create a permanent memorial for Jim and Kletis. She called the celebration bittersweet. “We’d rather still have dad, but this is wonderful for the township to do,” said Phylis.
Courtland Township Fire Department
by BETH ALTENA Courtland Township Fire Chief Micky Davis used a training practice as a chance to remind the public that cars are not a mobile shield of armor and to always be vigilant about safety while driving. On Thursday, May 26, Courtland and Montcalm firefighters used a car donated to the department to practice techniques to release people trapped in cars. The practice took place in the parking lot of Courtland Township Hall, 7450 14 Mile Road (M-57). Davis described to the other firefighters the importance of disconnecting the car’s battery during a rescue. He said making sure the airbags don’t deploy during the extraction is important. He advised putting a blanket over victims before breaking glass or if they are in a position to be injured by the rescue process. Davis was especially happy to work with a new cutting tool with the flexibility to turn in tight places. That piece of equipment normally costs $4,000 new, but the department was able to obtain a demo for considerably less. Another new piece of equipment for the department is a new electronic light system that can be activated either from the fire station or the Rockford Ambulance substation located next door. When a call for service comes in, firefighters or paramedics are able to activate a sign board on the road, warning drivers that rescue vehicles are entering the roadway. According to Davis, it is another safety factor for the first responders and was purchased and installed by the Kent County Road Commission. After the demolition, which included opening all four doors, breaking all the windows and taking the roof off the car, Davis had it displayed in front of the township’s sign with the message “Your Safety First.” Davis said he also plans to have a message warning drivers not to text while behind the wheel. He said texting while driving has become a major problem in recent years.
Dear Editor: Last year, dogs were banned from the Farmer’s Market and the parks. I’m guessing that this was because some dogs are not trained to act politely and some owners don’t take care of dog waste or other messes. In spite of these difficulties, I missed having canine friends at the parks and markets. My thought is that dogs should be allowed at parks and markets. Let the ones that are polite and friendly come. Let owners who know that dogs in this setting need to be on a leash and cleaned up after bring their dogs. I really feel that the well behaved and responsible are being penalized for difficult and irresponsible. I encourage the city council to overturn the “no dogs” ruling. Sally Warren Rockford Dear Editor: This is a long over-due note of thanks to the Courtland Township Fire Department and Rockford Ambulance. Our first need of their services came the day after Thanksgiving when a chimney fire erupted into a full-blown fire. Upon arrival the volunteer firemen moved furniture, clocks, pictures, etc. to a three-season porch so that many treasured possessions were spared. Thanks to their professionalism the home was salvageable and by the end of February the Dunns could move back into a refurbished home. Then on May 7 the Rockford Ambulance answered a distress call to the same address when Vernon was found in his barn. Though the ending was not as good this time, their efforts were just as valiant. We as a community should be proud of our well-trained, compassionate volunteers and professional ambulance staffers. We are equally proud of our community. They surrounded the family with the same care and concern thus they deserve accolades as well. Thank you all, The Vernon Dunn Family