Community leaders share Thanksgiving wishes

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By The Staff

Each holiday season, county and school officials take a moment to share their plans and express their holiday wishes for the community.


This year, County Administrator Max Baker said he plans to go to his son’s house here in Los Alamos, where he and his family will share the traditional meal with friends.


“This is the time of year where we all pause and consider our blessings,” Baker said. “Los Alamos is certainly a great place to live and many tremendous people live here.”


Council Chair Jim Hall said he and his wife are planning on going to their daughter's house in Ruidoso to have Thanksgiving dinner.


“I wish that everyone has a healthy and blessed Thanksgiving,” he said. “We are fortunate to live in a beautiful place and a great county. We’re thinking of our troops overseas and hope they all come back home.”


School Board President Steve Girrens is spending the day in town.


“Our children are home from school and my mother-in-law is here and we’ll all be having Thanksgiving together, full strength as a family,” he said.


Girrens wished residents traveling for the holiday safe journeys and for those staying home, a day filled with joy of family and he asks everyone to give thanks for the many blessings of being American.


When called for comment, school board member Jody Benson was busy baking ancestral recipes passed down from her great grandmother to her grandmother to her mom and now to her.


“I’m having family and friends over for Thanksgiving.” Benson said. Her wish for the community is that she would like everyone to meet the future with courage and excitement.


“There are going to be some big changes that we can meet together,” she said.


Council Vice Chair Robert Gibson and his family are planning a quiet Thanksgiving at home.


“These are times of considerable uncertainty and anxiety,” he said. “It’s a good day to take stock of all that we can indeed be sure of and be thankful for. And we wish for some snow for the skiers.”


Councilor Jim West plans to have Thanksgiving dinner with a group of friends this year. He says they are old friends whom he’s known for a long time.


“I hope that this next year we can accomplish as much as we have in the past year,” West said. “I think this past year has been a good year for the county. The future for this community is great despite all the doom and gloom that’s taking place throughout the world. I think the future of Los Alamos is great and I don’t have any plans to move.”


This year Councilor Nona Bowman and her husband Charlie will celebrate Thanksgiving in Los Alamos with their son and some good friends. She shared some of her reasons for feeling thankful this year.


“On this Thanksgiving day, let us remember that even the pilgrims, in their difficult and dangerous times recognized the need for a time to withdraw from their everyday activities and share with friends, neighbors and family, the blessings that had been received during the year,” Bowman said. “We are especially thankful for our good friends and neighbors who are always there when there is a need. We are also thankful for our children and grandchildren who keep us young by keeping us up to date on their generation’s thinking.”


Bowman wished each Los Alamos family a happy and safe holiday.


“We have challenges in our community and nation but let’s not forget the blessings we have received during the past year,” she said.


There have been disagreements and disappointments this year, here in Los Alamos and the year has been difficult financially for many, Councilor Frances Berting said.


“Still, looking at the big picture, we are in a beautiful natural setting and little by little we are working to improve the infrastructure, the man-made setting,” she said. “We have an excellent county staff and a council that is working together internally and with staff, trying to incorporate as many citizens’ wishes as can possibly fit compatibly into each issue (and the budget). It is my hope that for each disappointment there is at least one issue where each citizen can feel pleased at the outcome this Thanksgiving. So go forth and enjoy our Los Alamos as it is now and as it is becoming – small town, safe, gorgeous and friendly.”