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Sometimes it's good to just stop for a moment and say thanks.

In this community, it happens pretty regularly. But it doesn't happen as often as it should -- only because so many people give of their time, money and expertise to make it a better place to live it would be almost impossible to thank them all.

One example was the tribute to videographer Jim Thorpe, who attends anything and everything to help compile a video history of Carson City.

It's one of the most civic-spirited endeavors around, making it possible for thousands to see important meetings, lectures and events via Carson Access Television.

At age 82, Thorpe says "Isn't it something, getting recognized for your hobby?" His is just the kind of modesty that permeates the Carson area's penchant for volunteering.

There was the recent success of the Easter drive to collect shoes for schoolchildren who need them. Over the weekend, a doll auction raised money for the Children's Museum of Northern Nevada.

In fact, almost every weekend there are several opportunities in and around Carson City to find people volunteering, raising money and giving.

And then there are the more-or-less spontaneous acts, like the continuing effort to maintain a memorial cross alongside Highway 50 for a young girl, Krystal Steadman, whose murder shocked Northern Nevada residents two years ago.

It could have been -- and should have been -- a simple thing to erect a small cross as a fitting remembrance for an innocent child.

But as if to prove evil still lurks among us, someone keeps vandalizing the memorial. And volunteers keep putting up bigger, stronger crosses in an attempt to thwart the vandals.

So Krystal's cross has become more than a tribute to one person. It has become a symbol of how goodness overcomes, how compassion and caring eventually win out. Most of all, though, it shows how the struggle is never over.


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