Letters to the Editor

Grateful for 4h support

The 4H Alls would like to thank the local businesses who supported our two Junior Market Livestock (JML) members, Maddy Miotke and Adela Pederson. A HUGE thank you to Mel from the Grog Shop who has supported us for the past four years, as well as Kathy Beachy from Beachy Construction, Sean from Fritz Creek, and the Wagon Wheel for supporting the JML 4H program.

In addition, Adela would like to thank Wagon Wheel for providing her with another grand champion turkey for the fourth year in a row. Animals were shown and auctioned off during the 4H Expo at the Soldotna Sports Center the first weekend of August. Thank you again for supporting our children and 4H programs.

Sherry Pederson

Drew Scalzi scholarship appreciated

I would like to thank Barb Scalzi and the Homer Foundation for supporting my pursuit of higher education in the maritime field. I will use this opportunity to pursue a Bachelor’s of Science in Marine Transportation at the California State University – Maritime Academy.

The Drew Scalzi Memorial Maritime Scholarship awarded to me will allow me to participate in summer training trips and internship programs, both essential building blocks for success in the maritime industry.

Owen Glasman

COVID-19 not as bad as headlines say

We are bombarded with headlines about COVID-19 in newspapers and on TV. From that, you might get the impression that COVID-19 is worse than ever. The fact is that deaths in the United States last Friday were only 17% of what they were at COVID’s peak in January (769 vs. 4,475). Delta variant cases are already quickly dropping in countries around the world and experts are predicting the same will be true in this country. Unfortunately, leftist politicians are using the delta variant surge as an excuse to re-implement the same totalitarian countermeasures that didn’t work the first time we tried them.

Meanwhile, in Sweden, the country that never mandated face masking or lock downs, didn’t stop in person grade school or shut down businesses, the pandemic is over. The population of Sweden is 10.3 million people, which is about 14 times as large as Alaska’s, and they are averaging less than one COVID death per week. Sweden addressed COVID successfully without doing the ridiculous things we keep repeating. It is time for us to learn from Sweden and push back. Don’t be a victim of COVID tyranny anymore. Masking should be voluntary. If you want to wear one, go ahead, but we should say no to mandated face masking. Let’s start with stopping face masking for school kids. Homeschool your kids if you must. Next, if you frequent a business requiring face masks for entry, thoughtfully consider how badly you need to shop there. It is time to stop this foolishness now. We are Americans, a free people, not a bunch of sheep.


Greg Sarber

The importance of the printed press

I had a subscription to the Sunday Anchorage Daily News delivery along with their online news, so it was disappointing to hear the ADN was stopping south peninsula home delivery, including to the local stores. It’s very important to support the printed press. I continue to be disheartened that we are pushed to online versions. No longer seeing the printed press in the newsstands is a testament to the dumbing down of our society. The print that instead, unfortunately, continues its glossy display in the grocery check-out aisles: the National Enquirer and fashion magazines with an occasional Times magazine.

Local elections are coming up this October. Without local papers, thank you so much Homer News for hanging in there, people will be neglectfully informed. Local news runs great printed Q/A’s of candidates. Either we get this information from local journalists/news or we get it from the outside-funded ads coming in bulk to our mailboxes and TV commercials.

We should be asking, why are our elections so heavily influenced by outside sources such as wealthy Republican Political Action Committees? Our state laws allow this, and as I read, a recent appeals court decision now also allows unlimited amounts to flow in (even though the majority of Alaskans voted for limits to campaign donations).

Freedom of the press is one of our First Amendment rights. How do we know who the press is if we don’t actually read the news, especially local? Really and obviously, Facebook and other questionable social media posts do not qualify as reliable news and information. Civic responsibility is more important now than it ever has been.

Therese Lewandowski

Taliban victory means they get U.S. arms

We armed 300,000 Afghans to fight the Taliban and now we have armed 300,000 Taliban and ISIS and Al Qaeda with arms and equipment. Then we just left, and left it all there.

Ray Dawson

Thank you to all who participated in the Veterans Appreciation Picnic

The Veterans Appreciation Picnic was held on Sunday, Aug. 15 and was hosted by the American Legion Unit 16 Auxiliary. Over 100 veterans and family members attended the event, including the Department of Alaska American Legion Commander, Mike Downs and his wife Robyn, as well as the American Legion Department of Alaska Auxiliary President Jane Larsen and her husband Matt. A fun time was had by all. Thank you to Andre Drake and the 8 Mile Band for the great music.

Representatives from the VA Clinic, Dayle Allen and Jennifer Colton were on hand, as well as Jennifer Henley accompanied by her husband Eric who provided Honor Flight information and applications.

The picnic ran smoothly thanks to the help from the Sons of the American Legion (SAL) who manned the grills and all the American Legion Auxiliary and post member volunteers who helped set up serve and clean up for this event. I could not have done this without you.

A special thank you goes out to our local businesses, especially during these times, who really showed their support for our veterans by providing door prizes/donations for this event including: Alyeska Tire & Auto Service, American Legion Post 16, Art Shop Gallery, Bear Creek Winery, Beluga Lake Lodge, Boat Yard Café, Bob Kawa- Barber, Caroline’s, Classic Cook, Fat Olives, Finn’s Pizza, Fish Connection, Homer Brewing, Heritage RV Park, Kharacters, Kachemak-Gear Shed, Lucky Paws Pet Spa, Northern Enterprises Boat Yard Inc., Safeway, Salty Girls, Save-U-More, Sea Breeze Catering, The Grog Shop, Tire Town LLC, and Ulmer’s Drug and Hardware.

We look forward to next year’s picnic and hope to see even more veterans at this fun-filled event.


Debbie Brahm- Veterans Picnic Chairman

Bev Munro and KBBI history

I truly appreciated the article Tom Kizzia wrote last week about The Homer Foundation. One small error was that he stated Gary Thomas was a founder of KBBI Public Radio. In fact, the original founder was Bev Munro, who moved here from Bethel and worked relentlessly for seed money from the Alaska State Legislature to start KBBI in the mid 1970s. Soon to join her was Kevin Hogan, and together they campaigned in the community to raise attention, money and support for the station to exist.

They were both on the original board of directors and eventually hired me in September of 1977 to be the first employee. Soon after, Kathy Steberl was hired, and lucky KBBI, that gave the station Larry Smith, a steadfast volunteer.

When KBBI was evicted from the station’s first location on Lake Street (the engineer had accidentally put a hole in the roof by walking on it), Larry designed a scheme involving Spenard Builders Supply donating building materials for future underwriting, as well as designing a building owned by the station off Main Street, with all volunteer help. KBBI launched on Aug. 4, 1979, with Bev Munro signing on the air.

Gary Thomas was an amazing volunteer even months before KBBI went on the air. He then replaced my position as program director, and later became a marvelous general manager, replacing the interim general manager. KBBI’s first GM had arrived at a board meeting intoxicated and was not suitable for the Homer community. Gary was instrumental in regaining KBBI’s reputation, and was a steadfast captain for years to come. And who can forget “Moldy Oldies?”

I feel blessed to have known both Bev Munro and Gary Thomas.

Rita Turner

Masks have worked for decades

Masks help reduce aerosols and the spread of disease. We know they work and that’s why we’ve been wearing them for more than 50 years in medical and dental professions. So why is it that our KPBSD superintendent, with the COVID-19 needle pegged in the red on the school district website, would not adhere to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines?

As the COVID-19 delta variant is making younger people sicker, the CDC’s current recommendation is for universal indoor masking by all students (age 2 and older), staff, teachers and visitors to K-12 schools, regardless of vaccination status. We all look forward to not wearing masks again but only “strongly recommending” masking leaves a giant gap below the CDC recommendation for prevention of this disease.

This pandemic is here in our community more now than ever, and a simple indoor mandatory mask policy could help reduce the spread of disease and make for a better school year.


Dr. Jay Marley