Letter to the editor

The Kansan

COVID-19 'uncharted waters'

These past 18 months have been a challenge for all of us, from medical professionals to teachers, grocery workers to long-term care staff, families caring for seniors or caring for children, and many others.

In particular, we want to extend a thank you to our Harvey County Health Department. Just like law enforcement and first responders, they train and prepare for the unexpected. The COVID-19 pandemic is certainly uncharted waters.

The pandemic has ebbed and flowed. Active cases have slowed at times, only to pick back up again. The Health Department has remained ready to devote the necessary resources to respond through it all.

Disease investigation isn’t new for local health departments. Long before we’d heard of COVID-19, it’s been our duty to track diseases for the Kansas Department of Health and Environment such as whooping cough, hepatitis and chickenpox.

COVID-19 has been unwelcomely persistent, more so than any of us likely would have imagined. COVID-19 has been a tiring and frustrating time in our history, and still today.

We certainly hope no one has to get that call informing them they have tested positive for COVID-19 or are a close contact of someone who has, but if you do, please be understanding, kind and respectful. Our Health Department’s purpose is to educate our communities and prevent the spread of diseases. That was as true before COVID-19 as it is now.

Harvey County has overwhelmingly been supportive and appreciative of the work of our local health professionals. We thank everyone for their perseverance. Better days are ahead.

George A. “Chip” Westfall Harvey County Commissioner, District I

Randy Hague Harvey County Commissioner, District II

Don Schroeder Harvey County Commissioner, District III

Call it what you want, but keep Lindley Hall

Lindley Hall has been in the news lately for two different reasons. The first one was whether the name be changed because Frank Lindley did not allow minorities to play basketball when he was coaching, There is no debate that Frank Lindley discriminated against minorities and it was wrong.

Lindley Hall has a lot more history than Frank Lindley. I never knew Frank Lindley and do not worship him. My heroes were Coach Ravenscroft and Coach Schlup who coached after Frank Lindley. The gym they call Lindley Hall was a big part of my life. Playing on a basketball championship team in 1965-66 with a packed crowd on both Tuesday and Friday nights was quite an experience Two of the players on my team were Mario Garcia and Benny Martinez. Both were starters. I think it would be more appropriate if Mario and Benny would comment on changing the name of Lindley Hall than me.

The outside wall of Lindley Hall fell in a storm where the letters "HISTORICAL LINDLEY HALL had been placed. I have a suggestion. Do not put the letters back up. To those people like me that want to call the gym Lindley Hall, they may do so. To those people who do not like the name Lindley Hall, they can call it the gym at Santa Fe or whatever they wish. The school board has a difficult decision. If they don't change the name, many people will be upset. If they do change the name, many people will be upset. There are no winners. Just leave the name off the building.

The second issue is should Lindley Hall (the gym at Santa Fe)be torn down or saved? Many years ago the historical court house was torn down and replaced with an ugly looking modern building. It was said it would cost more to repair the old court house than to build a new one. I have heard this reasoning too many times. Saving history must be worth something. Several years ago there were 15 vacant buildings in the downtown area. My partner and I ended up buying most of these buildings. We did not tear them down but we repaired them. Once you destroy an historical building it is gone and can never be brought back.

Save Lindley Hall — the gym at Santa Fe. DO NOT TEAR IT DOWN.

— Stan Brodhagen, Newton