Beautiful Marylanders

Readers write

October 13, 1991

From: Vi Ballengee

Glen Burnie

After hearing about the "Maryland You Are Beautiful" letters in The Anne Arundel County Sun praising Angela Gambill for the feature article she had written on Jan Emmons ("Thanks for story," Anne ArundelCounty Sun, Oct. 6), I feel that I should tell your readers that Angela Gambill is also one of "Maryland You Are Beautiful" persons, as are other of your employees whose names I do not know.

After reading the article about the Cook family (the family who had been living in a tent and finally rented an apartment with sparse furnishings) I phoned The Anne Arundel County Sun, thinking I could get the Cook's address because I had many things to donate. The person who answered the phone (I'm sorry I didn't get her name) gave my message to Angela Gambill (she had written the article on the plight of the Cook family). Within minutes, Angela called me back.

I told her I had so many things to donate, but some things were very heavy and that my husbandcould do no lifting. Angela was such a caring, sympathetic person that in minutes after that phone call, she called me back to tell me that two or three of the male employees at The Anne Arundel County Sun would load and unload the donations.

I think its important that your readers know that you have such dedicated employees and I hope Angela will name the three males who were willing to help. As it turned out, their help was not needed, but they should be recognized.

There are more "Maryland You Are Beautiful" people I would like to name:my beautiful daughter and son-in-law, Russ and Brenda Howell, who donated a bedroom suite and bedclothes, and also my son, Chuck Ballengee, and my husband, Albert (who furnished the truck). The three of them spent Sunday gathering all the donations and delivered everything to the Cook family.

Mr. Cook called me Friday, again expressing appreciation to all concerned. I made it a point to inform him about the"Beautiful" people who work for The Anne Arundel County Sun. Not oneof the above people were interested in any kind of recognition, justan interest in helping someone in need, as are the "Maryland You AreBeautiful" persons. Thank God for all of them.

Footnote: Mr. Cooktold me they now have everything they need except silverware and a few cooking utensils.

COMPETITION WAS UNFAIR

From: Leona Dunnock

Glen Burnie

On Sunday, Sept. 29, 1991, I attended my first Anne Arundel County Cheerleading Competition at Lake Waterford Park, sponsored by the Pasadena Chargers Organization. This was an invitational competition to which the A.A. Gridiron Rebels Cheerleaders were invited and paid a registration fee like all the other organizations present.

We were under the impression that this was to be a "fair and just" competition, but this was not so! The Rebels Cheerleaders put in many hours of practice prior to the competition, perfecting difficultroutines. All of this was in vain, as it was not their day to shine in the eyes of the so-called "executive" board of directors of the Anne Arundel County Youth Cheerleading Association.

The 115 lb. and 135 lb. Rebels cheerleaders executed flawless routines. However, based on a claim (made by a competing organization) that the Rebels were using the same girl on the 115-lb. and 135-lb. squads, these two squads were subsequently disqualified from the competition. The board of directors overruled the competition judges and made their own decision.

I always thought that in America you were innocent until provenguilty. Not so in this case. Although the girls were asked to do their routines over for the judges (during a break in competition) because of a "problem with their routine," the decision to disqualify themhad already been made. How can you prove your innocence if people choose not to believe you? What can you do if they don't believe the team rosters or their own eyes? As a parent of children on both the 75-lb. and 115-lb. squads, I can attest to the fact that these allegations are absolutely not true! I can see how the mistaken identity issuecould have happened since all of the girls had their hair fixed the same way, and the two girls in question are both blondes.

I'm surethat from a distance, some of these girls could look alike, especially to someone who doesn't know them personally. However, this does not give anyone the right to make clearly unsubstantiated accusations, especially when innocent children are hurt in the process.

I resent the fact that people now view the Rebels as an organization that would lie and cheat to win. How degrading! It's one thing to lose a competition based on points or scoring, but outrageous to be disqualified over an incident that never occurred.

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