YOUR SIDE: The Readers Take Over

Advocate hopes Senate considers chronic illnesses sufferers

To the editor:

My name is Jennifer Witmer and I am an advocate for the community of individuals impacted by celiac disease/non-celiac gluten/wheat sensitivity. I write to urge you to stand with us to ensure the stability for chronic disease patients as the Senate considers healthcare reform. It is my hope that the Senate will preserve key patient protections and respect the circumstances of those combating chronic illnesses.

Any proposal must maintain crucial patient protections that promote access and prevent financial hardships. Specifically, any Senate proposal must prohibit pre-existing condition discrimination.

My family has been impacted by celiac and gluten/wheat sensitivity. My father-in-law is celiac and is currently in remission from cancer caused from his celiac.

My husband, 3-year-old daughter and my 1-year-old son, whom at 2 months was diagnosed, all have a sensitivity. My household is taking the necessary steps to hopefully prevent my family members from getting cancer and continuing to living a healthy lifestyle.

My father-in-law was not diagnosed until he was in his forties, so he unknowingly was damaging his body for 40 years. Celiac and gluten/wheat sensitivity is not a glamorous lifestyle. It is not fun to have to limit my children at family picnics, not be able to go out to eat due to concern of cross contamination and while most moms are able to go play with their children I have to be in my kitchen cooking/preparing every meal. This is an extremely expensive lifestyle on top of the additional medical bills for screening and tests.

I did not choose to have to hold my child down for more blood work and always having the thought in the back of my mind that possibly I will have to hold my child’s hand while they are going through chemo treatments. I do not know what the future holds for my family and their health care needs but we are only one family of millions that are in this same situation.




WWII veterans eligible for Legion of Honor from France

To the editor:

Since 2014 the government of France has been awarding their highest medal, the Legion of Honor to veterans that fought to liberate France during the Second World War.

Many veterans worldwide have now received this great honor but many veterans may not even know it is available. The Legion of Honor is a very significant official medal that is the highest award granted by the Government of France. Living American Veterans who saw service in France or directly supported the French liberation campaigns, fighting in one or more of the epic battles including Normandy, Southern France, Northern France and the Ardennes or fought on French soil in other battles may be eligible.

There is no cost or fee involved. If you served in the United States Army, Navy or Air Force and you feel that you may qualify for this award and would like to apply, an application form must be completed and submitted along with certain supporting documents to the Consulate of France within your area. The form and detailed application information can be found on the website of the Consulate of France in San Francisco, http://sanfrancisco.consulfrance.org/spip.php?article2647.

For assistance, please contact Mr. Guy Black, email korea19501953@yahoo.com and use the subject, American Veteran or send me a letter addressed to Legion of Honor C/O 515 – 95 Moody Street, Port Moody, BC V3H 0H2, Canada. Please do not send me your completed application. I am an unofficial volunteer and my goal is to make sure as many American veterans as possible receive this important tribute in recognition of their service and sacrifice for the cause of peace and freedom.


Port Moody, Canada


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