Child’s story touches East-Coast teacher

From the editor’s desk

From the editor’s mailbox:
> Valerie Young, a fourth-grade teacher in Philadelphia Public Schools, sent an e-mail after reading a story on our Web site about an area youngster who suffers from Moya Moya disease.
The disease causes blockage of the main blood vessels to the brain, which leads to strokes and seizures.
Young said she is having medical problems and doctors haven’t been able to determine the cause. She indicated her symptoms are similar to those suffered by Samuel Spurgeon, the 12-year-old boy in the story.
“I’ve had three strokes in three years,” she wrote. “On Thursday (Nov 20), I was at school and I had another episode. … I was scared because my symptoms were worse than the previous two times. I really thought that I was going to die.
“I’m scheduled for a consultation with a neurosurgeon on Tuesday (this week) and I’m scared to death.”
She is hoping to begin a national support group for those with Moya Moya disease. “It’s good to know that I am not alone,” she wrote.
> Cathy Hess is co-chair for the 2004 Curry County Relay for Life.
“I relay because I have two dear co-workers who are cancer survivors,” she wrote in an e-mail seeking volunteers for the annual fund-raiser.
“I relay because my son is named after his uncle who was taken by cancer at the age of 23. I relay because my nephew’s 14-year-old daughter lost a battle with leukemia in September of 2001. Lastly, I relay because in third grade, at the age of 8, I lost my mother to cancer. I know you relay for similar reasons.”
An organizational meeting for relay volunteers is scheduled for 5 p.m. today at the Java Loft inside The Master’s Centre.
n Carol Singletary, a teacher at Clovis High School, had this to say about Michael Jackson’s week in the news following allegations of child molestation.
“Every year I ask my students to discuss the difference between heroes and celebrities, and every year it is hard for them to see the difference,” she wrote in an e-mail. “Recently they give lip service to the idea that firefighters and police officers are heroes, but I can tell by the way they talk they aren’t really convinced.”
> Fort Sumner Mayor Raymond Lopez sent a two-page fax summarizing the stance he and some other Fort Sumner residents have taken on Billy the Kid issues.
“We are totally opposed to the disinterment of William Bonney’s remains, not because we feel that we have anything to hide (as some people have suggested), but because the exhumation of a grave represents an invasion of one of the most sacrosanct rights we have as individuals and obligations for human remains.
“You don’t go digging up a person’s grave for a publicity stunt, which is all we see that this Billy the Kid case is about.”

From the Editor’s Desk is a weekly memo to CNJ readers. David Stevens can be reached at 763-6991, extension 310, or by e-mail: