April 05, 2020

Weathering the storm

Last week, Maine received some of the worst weather in our history. Thousands of Mainers were left without power, heat and telephone service. Damages totaled in the millions of dollars.

But the storm showed once again that when Mainers are in need, their neighbors never hesitate to rush to help. As I toured the shelter at the Bangor Air National Guard, I was moved by how many people had volunteered to aid those in need. Across Maine, we heard hundreds of similar stories.

This is what being a member of a community is all about, and I have never been more proud to be a Mainer.

I want the people of Maine to know the federal government will do its part to ensure that the damage is repaired as soon as possible. Last week, James Lee Witt, the director of the Federal Emergency Management Agnency (FEMA), assured me that he would personally monitor the weather conditions in Maine and would provide whatever federal assistance is available.

In addition, I have been in contact with officials at the White House and the U.S. Small Business Administration, both of whom also pledged their help. The SBA’s Disaster Office in Niagara Falls, N.Y., can provide federal aid to small businesses that suffered losses as a result of the storm.

I have been in contact with Gov. King to coordinate federal and state responses to the storm, and on Monday toured damaged areas of Maine with officials from FEMA and the Maine Emergency Management Agency. As has occured at the community level, Maine’s state and federal officials will work together to return the state to a degree of normalacy. John E. Baldacci Member of Congress Washington, D.C.

We are one of the thousands of families which want to thank the staff at WWBX-FM and WABI-AM for their coverage during the ice storm. For four days, their broadcast was the only news we got from the outside world, while most other stations were either off the air or broadcasting their regular programs.

All day and all night, someone in our household was listening, even after the power returned. The people of Maine who were able to receive the station’s signal owe a great debt to the staff, one which should be recognized by the Legislature and the governor.

On behalf of all the people who called in to offer help to friends and strangers alike, thank you, WWBX-FM and WABI-AM. Michael J Denis Oakland

And now a eulogy. Please bow your head. Oh Lord, we are gathered here together out of our deep respect for nature and for these trees.

Our fallen friends, who watched over all of us. Who offered a haven to the birds, shade to our citizens, oxygen and historical beauty to everyone. Who yielded only grace and beauty, who always stood tall and proud against all adversity.

We smile now, with remembered pleasured at the generations who passed beneath your branches.

We mourn your untimely passing and hope you rest in (stove-length) pieces. David Betts Bucksport

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