Letters to the Editor
(Editor's note: The following presentation was made at last Sunday's annual meeting of the Santa Fe Trail Historical Society. Every year, the group honors a long-time member.)
To the editor:
Through the years, Charles Doudna has given much of his time and efforts to the betterment of the Santa Fe Trail Historical Society.
Charles served early on as president of the organization and continued to give of his services in several capacities that helped the society.
I remember his work during the depot renovation and especially his scaling scaffolding to do work on the ceiling and higher parts of the walls.
Charles and Evelyn volunteered often at the gift shop and took the responsibility of setting up the volunteer list to make sure it was well manned.
Charles has a love of model trains and set up a display and track so children and others could watch the train run through its Baldwin City setting while they visited the depot.
With his great singing voice, he led us in group singing at our annual meetings and even brought song sheets so we could have the words.
Whenever a prayer was needed, Charles would furnish that.
For all that Charles has done through the years, no one is more deserving to receive this honorable membership.
Thank you, Charles.
To the editor:
On March 28, 2001, our son Dillon received the gift of life from a resident of Baldwin City, Janet Gardner. Dillon was diagnosed in 1998, at 16 months of age, with Leukemia. Sadly, a two-year regimen of chemotherapy did not work for his body and he needed a bone marrow transplant. We were told that Dillon's odds for survival were less than 40% chance of living two years after transplant. Nobody in our immediate family was a match, however, Dillon was fortunate to find a near perfect match in Janet.
Thankfully, Janet had taken a few minutes out of a busy day, nearly 10 years before our son needed her help, to have a quick blood test and sign up as an unrelated bone marrow donor. When the call came to donate to a stranger, she didn't hesitate and Dillon was given her bone marrow through a blood transfusion, while he slept peacefully. It was a struggle for the next few months, but he continued to gain weight and develop with few set backs.
Because the human body cannot survive without bone marrow, the date of transplant is often recognized as the recipient's rebirthday. So, we celebrate Janet every year, many miles away in Alberta, Canada. It was such a pleasure to meet her and her husband, a year and a bit after Dillon's transplant, share some laughs and to show them around our community. She is a friend for life and because of her generosity, Dillon enjoyed his 9th birthday last Spring and is looking forward to another busy summer filled with fun.
Janet has since offered to donate for other people as well. It is my hope that she can rest now while others pick up the torch. Go to http://www.marrow.org for more information or to become a donor
A grateful family,
John, Ila and little brother Jesse Sligter (7)
(Editor's note: The Signal will be doing a feature story on Janet Gardner in an upcoming issue.)