Angela Dykes lost seven weeks of memory when she was involved in a head-on crash on M-57 near Ramsdell Road on January 22, 2008. She remembers to be thankful for her life, however, and those who came to her aid that day. On Monday, August 3, Dykes took the time to thank paramedics from Rockford Ambulance for the role they played in her survival. Dykes brought a bag of Lifesavers candies for her saviors and gave them “the rest of the story” while trying to answer some questions of her own. “Was I wearing clothes?” she asked. Of her wardrobe, only her red winter jacket and a pink boot seem to be missing. Dykes was on her way back from teaching at Spring Arbor University when a driver in the opposite direction decided to “peek” around the car he was following to see if he could pass. Instead, the SUV struck Dykes’ Volkswagen Passat head on. Among the injuries Dykes suffered were 35 broken bones. She spent the next four weeks in Butterworth Hospital’s Intensive Care Unit, another five weeks in the Continuing Care Center, and was on her back in recovery from January to July 2008. Formerly a runner, Dykes is now an inch shorter in one leg and will soon have her right ankle fused. “I’m not going to stop having fun. I don’t classify myself as disabled. I classify myself as ‘alternately abled.’” The paramedics said they were happy to have her feedback, and hear she survived. “I remember saying to Jeff, ‘There is no way she is alive in there’,” said Jamie Balcom, a paramedic with Rockford Ambulance. Rockford Ambulance was assisted in the crash by Courtland Township Fire Department. Aeromed was called but unable to respond due to weather conditions. “People don’t choose to come in for whatever reason and say thank-you. I’m here to say, ‘You did a good job’,” Dykes said.
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