Jun

02

Posted by : Monitor Admin | On : June 2, 2017

: Club members work to assemble the shortwave antenna.

By Pearl Cantrell
Monitor Staff Writer
GUN BARREL CITY–Gun Barrel City Fire Department and the Cedar Creek Amateur (ham) Radio Club have teamed up to create backup communications in cases when storms take out electrical power, damages cellular phone networks, and even renders Internet and land lines useless.
A couple of years ago, the ham club installed a basic radio with a range of 15 miles as part of the Emergency Operations Center the fire department maintains to coordinate communication in the area. That range meets most local needs.
However, the April 29 tornadoes (not to mention hurricanes Ike and Katrina) have demonstrated the need to communicate beyond the local area. How do you reach Austin or Fort Worth or other regional centers that can bring aid in a hurry? The answer: shortwave radio.
Working with Fire Chief Joseph Lindaman, the club has installed just such a station that can reach out to metropolitan centers outside of the local area. “It is just another layer of protection for area residents,” radio operator Ed Busch said.
Shortwave requires much larger antennas that are rotatable. Though light weight, the antenna is awkward, due to its size. There was much discussion about how to lift the antenna from the fire station parking lot where it was constructed to its rooftop tower, May 25.
Then the Chief came up with the idea of using a ladder truck to lift, and then extend upwards across the roof. It worked beautifully.
There are many improvements yet to be made to the radio station in the EOC, which includes the sophisticated equipment belonging to the club, but in the meantime the club can use it for training and as a club station for its members. And in the case of emergency conditions, trained radio operators can call out for assistance.
The Gun Barrel City Fire Department is very active in the community and in its efforts to protect the city’s residents. “This was a unique project for the city to partner with a civic group,” Lindaman told The Monitor. “It went really well.”

Jun

02

Posted by : Monitor Admin | On : June 2, 2017

By Rollin Hadsell
Monitor Staff Writer
ATHENS–Memorial Day gives us as Americans a time to reflect on the ones who have paid the ultimate price for us to enjoy the freedoms we have every day. CrossFit 751 Gym went above and beyond just remembering our fallen heroes Saturday, May 27.
More than 100 people took part in a workout called the Murph. The workout is in honor of one of those heroes, Navy Seal Lieutenant Michael Patrick Murphy, who was killed in action June 28, 2005 after being involved in a firefight with the Taliban in Asadabad, Afghinstan.
Murphy became a United States Navy SEAL in July 2002. Murphy was on a mission to capture a Taliban leader living in the hills in Afghanistan. Murphy received 14 medals for his bravery and sacrifice, including the United States Military’s highest decoration, the Medal of Honor. Murphy was also awarded a Silver Star and Purple Heart.
“There are several Hero Workouts in CrossFit that are named after fallen soldiers, but Murph is by far the most well-known,” CrossFit 751 Head Trainer and Manager Kam Fletcher said. “Here at CrossFit 751 & CrossFit GBC, it is an event that we take tremendous pride in, because it is a way for us to not only honor Lt. Michael Murphy, but all soldiers who have given the ultimate sacrifice.”
The Murph workout consists of a one-mile run to begin, doing 100 pull-ups, 200 push-ups, 300 air squats and finishing with another one mile run, all while wearing a 20-pound vest while doing the workout. Fletcher explained the reason they use this workout. “It is an extremely tough workout, and we would not want it to be any other way. It is just a glimpse of what those guys go through overseas & in times of war. With that being said, everyone is encouraged to join, even those who are not members of the gym.”
Fletcher said no one has to go it alone in this workout. “The workout can be done in teams, because we really want the entire community to embrace what this is really about; coming together & supporting something bigger than ourselves. There is really no way we could ever repay those who have given the ultimate sacrifice, but this is our way of showing how much it means to us.”

May

31

Posted by : Monitor Admin | On : May 31, 2017

Sarah Maples Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution place wreaths on either side of the flagpole to honor those in the military who paid the ultimate price, giving their lives for the cause of freedom.

By Denise York
Monitor Staff Writer
MABANK–Sarah Maples Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) Past-Regent Susan Cothran reminds us Memorial Day is not the beginning of summer, a day of picnics at the lake or a time to wish each other “Happy Memorial Day,” but a somber, solemn day to honor those who died defending our freedoms.
Cothran spoke at the “Laying of Wreaths” ceremony the DAR performed at the Veterans Memorial Gardens in Mabank May 30, the designated Memorial Day. “Today we honor those fallen service members in our history who gave their lives, died, to establish or defend our freedoms in the United States of America.”
Initially called Decoration Day to honor the Union Army’s war dead, by the early 20th century it evolved into a holiday to honor all military who died in service and was held on May 30. Forty years ago, Congress moved the holiday to the last Monday in May to give people a three-day weekend. It is called Memorial Day Observed but has always been a day to remember the fallen.
Whatever civilians think, veterans will tell you “please don’t say Happy Memorial Day” or thank them for their present service on that day as Memorial Day is a day to honor those who died fighting for our freedoms and our way of life.
She echoed the words of President Trump when he honored those still missing and presumed dead “We can never replace them, never repay them but we can always remember them.”
Wreaths made by Dar members Jean Cawkins and Linda Minor were placed on the flagpole to remind everyone of the great sacrifice many made.
The group read several passages from previous presidents including what George Bush said in 1992 “On this day, we must tell the stories of those who fought and died in freedom’s cause. We must tell their stories because those who’ve lost loved ones need to know that a grateful Nation will always remember. We must tell their stories so that our children and grandchildren will understand what our lives might have been like had it not been for their sacrifice.”
Sarah Jungman closed with the words of Joseph Campbell “A hero is someone who has given his or her life to something bigger than oneself. Our flag does not fly because the wind moves it. It flies with the last breath of each soldier dying to protect it.”