Organization helps dyslexics learn to readMichael...


September 21, 1997

Organization helps dyslexics learn to read

Michael Olesker's Sept. 9 column about 82-year-old Betty Mandell was very interesting. However, he should have ended with this note: Today, we are so fortunate to have an organization called May Day Inc. (which stands for Maryland Association for Dyslexic Adults & Youths Inc.) Had this been in existence in Ms. Mandell's youth, she would have been taught to read.

I think this is a worthwhile organization that needs everyone's support.

Shirley Milner


Age no hindrance to determination

Michael Olesker's Sept. 9 column about 82-year-old Betty Mandell and her quest to learn to read brought tears to my eyes.

My great-grandmother taught herself to read decades after her marriage at age 13. Her daughter, my grandmother, taught herself to read music and play her organ prior to her death at 83.

These women had great determination and I admire them deeply.

My prayer is that our children, grandchildren and all generations of children to come will hear these stories and label them as ''the olden days,'' knowing full well that reading is as fundamental and natural as breathing.

Jahn Starr


Royal reserve is not lack of feeling

Nan Cockey's statement (letter, Sept. 15) that well-brought up people are taught not to display emotion is absurd.

I know a great many ''well-brought up'' people (including myself), and no one ever taught us not to display emotion in public.

I agree that self-control does not indicate lack of feeling. This does not mean that if you do show emotion in public, you are not well brought up.

MA I think ''reserved'' would be a more appropriate description.

Gail T. Koch


Elton John's song was a fitting tribute

F. De Sales Meyers (''After The First Death,'' Sept. 10) conveys strong intolerance for the tribute ''Candle In The Wind'' as rewritten by Bernie Taupin and performed by Elton John at Princess Diana's funeral. (I find it silly, by the way, that the author cannot bring himself to cite the composer and singer by name.) He cites the lyrics as ''pathetically inappropriate'' as found in ''a very cheap sympathy card'' and would have instead preferred readings of Shakespeare or even Dylan Thomas. Mr. Meyers fails to comprehend that Princess Diana's family preferred otherwise.

The ''unique funeral for a unique person'' concept combined appropriate poetry readings by Diana's sisters, a powerful biblical passage read by Prime Minister Tony Blair, wonderful song from the Westminster Abbey Choir, and a heartfelt eulogy from the late princess' brother. When Elton John was asked to participate in the funeral, I don't believe he viewed the request as an exercise in literary one-upmanship. The tribute was sung with emotion by one of Britain's best-known contemporary artists and it moved the royal family -- and much of the world's mourners -- to tears. Yes, classic readings were included in the ceremony. And Elton John's gracious offering was a perfect complement.

Alexander Seyal

Bel Air

We must promise to help children

As a Baltimore City public schools teacher, I applaud the efforts of the 5,000 adults and children who attended the Baltimore's Promise Summit last weekend. We need desperately work together to help solve the problems of our children here and now.

I encourage all teachers to cooperate with these types of events; they are the smiths who forge the type of cross-community cooperation that will rebuild Baltimore as one city for all.

, Kenneth S. Ciccone Baltimore

KAL's Cartoon provided auto safety lessons

Every morning is a little better for me as a result of KAL's editorial cartoons. When he focuses his multiple skills on a single subject, the insights are simply great.

His Sept. 7 cartoon did an exceptional job.

My only regret (knowing the sole survivor of the crash that killed Princess Diana was the only person with benefit of a seat belt/air bag combination) is that there was no way to include speed, seat belts and air bags in the same cartoon frame.

Owen Crabb


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