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Ode to Susan Hankins
Susan is my third mom, the lady with class and elegance that would remind me that I didn’t always need to cuss to get my point across.
I can hear her words now. She typically starts a conversation with “Oh, Jim... what are we going to do?” I remember her using the same line with many she talked to “Oh, Richard... Oh, Marie... Oh, Karen!” The words that followed “Oh, whomever,” were genuine, caring and typically led to us doing something to tackle a situation or problem.
I have to say that anyone who knows Susan knows that her desire to help others, organizations, causes, or whatever tweaked her passion, is genuine. As we go through life, typically too busy to think outside our immediate situation, Susan reminds us that there is more and that we should take the time to make our talents available to others. She always seems to be able to share her wisdom and motivate us, despite the fact that we feel we have done enough.
If there were more Susans in our communities, the food banks would be overflowing with food, non-profits would have plenty of money, chambers of commerce would bring in more revenue than their members could spend and thousands of people would be willing to volunteer.
I guess that’s the key to Susan, the elusive volunteer. As we go through our busy lives (Yes, Americans work harder than any other country), its easy to say, “I don’t have time to get involved.” But then a lady, in her classy way, reminds us that we can contribute and she shows us that through her example.
I feel fortunate to know Susan, to cherish our friendship and to thank God for giving me three moms, one of which is married to some guy who does something with rockets. Thanks, Barry, for sharing a special person.
Happy birthday and don’t forget your Moses Lake son.
Jim McKiernan, Advertising Director, Columbia Basin Herald; Former Valley Record Publisher