December 31, 2013
We have said goodbye to 2013, and although it was not as intense as 2011 with a fatal car chase and the Amtrak-big rig collision that killed six people, the previous 12 months showed both the accomplishments and sorrows, something the LVN will show this week.
The year began as a tiger, evolved into a lamb and then ended like a lion.
Throughout the news and community events and the stories of triumphs and tragedies, Churchill County showed its resilience in meeting many challenges, whether it would be families overcoming house fires that completely destroyed structures to various groups organizing fundraisers to help those battling cancer or other life-threatening diseases.
Beginning with the last week of December 2012 through early spring, numerous house fires disrupted many lives, and as a community, the residents of Churchill County responded with kindness and charity.
Sadly, the year has ended with an explosion at Bango Oil that critically injured a 24-year-old man to a house fire on Saturday that will affect a family of five trying to regroup and start their lives over again.
People volunteered without hesitation and continued to donate clothes, household items and money in one way to those whose dreams were shattered. Others lent their green-and-white support by the thousands for the Greenwave football team's quest in late November to win its first state championship since 1978.
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Although a state title eluded the team, a world title did not for Jade Corkill, as he and his partner won the Professional Rodeo Cowboy Association's world title in team roping, Corkill's second in his young career.
The county's economy bounced like a yo-yo between taxable sales statics that compared the fiscal years of 2012 and 2013. If it weren't for those tax abatements the state Legislature granted alternative energy, Churchill County would be $20 million richer. Instead of being rich, Churchill County struggles thanks to the irresponsibility of state lawmakers and previous governors.
From February to October, the see-saw battle of sequestration, where money was trimmed from government agencies including the military, to the government shutdown cast a black cloud not only on training and day-to-day operations at Naval Air Station Fallon, the largest employer in the county, but also over Churchill County and the worries that complete furlough or extended shutdown would have cost Churchill County millions of additional dollars taken from the coffers.
Every time we tried to take two to three steps forward to improve the county's economic outlook, the Legislature, especially Las Vegas lawmakers, siphoned more money away from the rural campuses of Western Nevada and Great Basin colleges and channeled them to the state's two major universities.
Now, we look to 2014 with hope but wonder what challenges await us all.
Editorial written by the LVN Editorial Board appear on Wednesdays.