Dear Santa Claus: I#039;ve been a very good boy this year

Published 12:00 am Saturday, December 21, 2002

Dear Santa: I'm writing to you because in 1897, The New York Sun told a little girl named Virginia that you really do exist. And since I still believe in miracles, and we all know newspapers are never wrong, I figured I would send you my wish list.

Sorry, it's so late, but I've never been very good with deadlines (I know, this is a bad attribute for someone in my line of work).

I've been a very good boy this year, so, I can do without the new clothes -- most of which end up being way too small before the winter is over -- or the tools and such (I'm not a very good do-it-yourselfer anyway). Instead, I've got a very specific wish list. It's pretty lengthy and a lot to ask for, but here goes:

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A rejuvenated downtown Ironton that allows people to live, work and play close to home.

A new business (or a few new businesses) here in Lawrence County so most of our residents do not have to go to Kentucky or West Virginia to make a living.

A thousand more jobs would be a nice start, but anything you can give us would be appreciated.

More volunteers for the many worthwhile programs in our communities. If we pull all of our resources together, we can help others achieve things they never thought were possible.

More people to visit shut-ins and folks in our nursing homes.

Not everyone is fortunate enough to spend Christmas, or any other day for that matter, with loved ones. Giving someone else the gift of companionship could go a long way.

Continued comments from readers that give me constructive advice on how to improve the newspaper. But, please, no shouting or words that I can't print in this column.

More folks to write letters to the editor. This page is reserved for just that, commentary. The more people who speak their voice makes this page that much more diverse and appealing.

The money needed to pay for such wonderful efforts as The Point industrial park, the Ironton industrial park and the Underground Railroad museum in Burlington, to name a few.

These projects will bring opportunity, cultural and educational opportunity to our communities.

More career opportunities for young people that don't require them to leave the county once they finish their education. We're tired of giving the big cities some of our best and brightest minds.

Speaking of big cities, perhaps you could find a way for the Cincinnati Bengals to win a few more games this season? I know it's way too late this year, but maybe you can pull a few strings for next season. A gift-wrapped Byron Leftwich would be nice.

Some statewide political officeholders who have a clue about the needs of Appalachian Ohio. How

would someone from Cleveland, Cincinnati or Columbus know what is best for us?

A settlement in the DeRolph case would be nice. We need to find a way to fund our schools so that we get as much money as the schools in those big cities.

Finally, health and happiness for my family, friends, co-workers and all of Lawrence County.

P.S. Also, if you could, please make sure that my three children get everything they want for Christmas. Lord knows I can't make that happen myself, but with a little help ….

With love and admiration,


Shawn Doyle is managing editor of the Ironton Tribune. To comment, please write to him in care of the newspaper or send an e-mail to shawn.