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November 25, 2010
Salem News

Thankful for having grown up in the wonderful town of Salem

To the editor:

This Thanksgiving, I am thankful to have grown up in such a wonderful town filled with caring and supportive residents.

I have not lived a full year in Salem since I graduated high school in 1995, yet when I deployed to Afghanistan last year, I received around a hundred packages and letters from Salem and other parts of Columbiana county.

I opened everything from inspiring letters to homemade cookies to a handmade quilt from a group of ladies in Lisbon.

Fortunately, I was able to send the majority of care packages out to the most remote areas of the country where the paratroopers appreciated them the most.

I am also thankful to all of those who supported my parents and family while I was away. Though deployments are tough on soldiers, it is always harder on the families left behind. It was reassuring to me that my family could count on their friends in Salem.

I would like to single out a few friends for going above and beyond: Derek Coffee and the members of the First Christian Church, Dave and Kelly Janofa and family, Paul and Carol Sue Headland and Fred and Dorothy Conser. I truly want to thank them and all those that supported not only my family, but the thousands of other military families during this past year. Thank you Salem, and please continue to remember the soldiers who are serving oversees.


Captain, Medical Corps, US Army

Tacoma, Washington

Editor's note: Matt Kunar is the son of Fred and Edna Kunar of Salem. After serving as ball boy as a youngster for the Salem High football team then coached by his father, Matt grew into an all-county and district player himself as a linebacker and running back. He graduated from Salem in 1995. He then attended Bucknell University where he was a four-year letterman in football and lettered one year in wrestling. He graduated from the Ohio University College of Osteopathic Medicine in 2005. He graduated from the DeWitt Army Community Hospital Family Medicine Residency Program, Ft Belvoir, VA in 2008. He served the Brigade Surgeon for the 4th Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division, from July 2008-August 2010. He deployed in that role to Kandahar, Afghanistan from September 2009 to July 2010. Matt was awarded the Bronze Star for my contribution to Operation Enduring Freedom X. He and his wife, the former Jillian Plesko, met in medical school. Matt informs they have a "beautiful" 20-month-old daughter, Sophie.

Appreciates everyone who supported Kick-a-Thon fund raiser for dinner

To the editor:

I would like to take this moment and thank everyone who donated to the students of Salem Self Pro Martial Arts for the fund raiser Kick-a-Thon for the Salem Community Thanksgiving dinner held at the Memorial Building 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

We raised $1,788. I am so proud of everyone for stepping up during the holidays. To Jeff and Nancy and all the volunteers who work so hard to put this on at this time of the year. I am so glad that Salem Self Pro can help and we will continue this tradition in the coming years.

Being a lifelong resident of Salem, I think that this is the greatest thing that I can do for this community.

Let's all just take a moment on Thanksgiving Day and be thankful that we can put food on the table for so many that want to fellowship.

Thank you everyone.


Salem Self Pro Martial Arts

Congratulations to Walmart for hanging 'Merry Christmas' signs

To the editor:

I know you will like this!

Congratulations to Walmart for hanging several "Merry Christmas" signs and no Happy Holidays signs.

It's about time a company has said no to the very few atheists who don't believe what Christmas means to the vast majority of us.

Yes, it's Merry Christmas! Christ is what the season is all about and anytime I see anyone, you know what I say.

And if the tiny percent of those who want to take Christ away from us don't like it, too bad. We are not changing our life for them.

Again, congratulations to Walmart and the Salem News which always prints Merry Christmas in their paper.

And from me to you: Merry Christmas!





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