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Sounds, Sights and Memories of September

Summer sailed right by and all area schools are now open for the 2015–2016 school year. The words ‘school is open, drive safely’, always ring out this time of year. However, judging from some driving I have witnessed, maybe a little refresher course on lawful and safe driving is needed.

Motorists must stop at least 10 feet away from a school bus that has its red lights flashing and stop arm extended. Please, this doesn’t mean speed up as the bus stops before that stop sign comes out and get around them. Remember during the foggy mornings kids will be accessing that bus and may be in a hurry and cross in front of you. Slow down and if needed, stop before you are really required to. At some bus stop sites it’s difficult to see the danger that may wait just ahead. Better safe than sorry.

Motorists must stop when they are behind a bus, meeting the bus or approaching an intersection where a bus is stopped. Common sense, but not to one driver I witnessed the other day. Again, approach with caution, you were a kid once, did you ever cut between two parked cars or dart across an intersection?

Stopping for a school bus includes the driver in the opposite lane, this too common sense, right? I watched this law broken this past week. The only time you can pass a school bus with red lights flashing, stop arm extended or stopped at an intersection, and this includes railroad crossings, is when a physical barrier separates the lanes of the highway. For example when a grassy median, guide rails or concrete median barrier separates you from the opposing lanes of traffic.

By law even if the stop sign is in and yellow lights are flashing it is your responsibility to make sure all children have reached a safe place.

Slow down, calm down and use some common sense. Think about what is at risk by your actions behind the wheel.

Some other things to avoid in helping to keep our children safe. Parking and blocking the vision lanes at school crossings, double-parking in school areas, which forces young ones to cross between two parked vehicles. And as the saying goes, school is open drive safely, watch for that distracted student/pedestrian during the early morning and get out of school hours. Be prepared to stop and avoid a tragedy.

The calendar reading September brings a grin to many a local face. Friday Night Lights, College Football Saturdays, and the National Football League?

Steelers, Eagles, Penn State, Notre Dame, the Mounties, Bulldogs or Lancers? The list goes on and on. Everyone seems to have game day gear to wear for their favorite team. I have only one rule: no Dallas Cowboys garb allowed in the office. America’s team to me is everyone serving in the United States Armed Forces.

Incidentally I always root for Army, Navy, and the Air Force Academy. Yes, even when they play Penn State. If the Nittany Lions aren’t good enough to beat them, they don’t deserve to win. I’ll never forget that 7–6 Navy victory my Father and I sat through at Beaver Stadium in the early 70s.

It was a monsoon! Water running down the walking aisles of the stadium like Niagara Falls.

Get out and support your local high school team, stop by Pearson Field and check out Coach Mike Clark’s Lycoming College Warriors. You can also find out the schedule for your hometown Junior Football kids. Every community locally has made the switch from Pop Warner to Junior Football. It’s amazing how the young players from ages 5–12, make the field look so large.

New turf fields can be found up on the hill in Williamsport and at Warrior Stadium in Montoursville. More on the Cherry and White’s STA Stadium project and the Blue and Gold new field next week.

As I look at the calendar for this week one day jumps out at me. The same day that does the second week of every September since 2001.

We cannot ever forget what those evil bastards did to us that day. We can never forget what Militant Islamic fundamentalists did to us in the name of Jihad – we must always remember the 3,000 innocent victims of that day. We must remember the smoke billowing from the Twin Towers as they stood that morning and after they had fallen, showing us just how precious life and freedom are.

Mr. Obama will still not identify Radical Islamic terrorists by their proper name. He continues to play nice with Iran and the Middle East, of course with the exception of Israel. He never gives our only true ally in this region the respect they deserve.

He has done as little as possible to defeat ISIS but enough to say he’s doing something. He has failed in securing our borders and ports to keep out illegal aliens that are criminals, terrorists and a threat to our Nation. And as I’m penning this he is back to taking on Mother Nature and global climate change, the real threat to America. All that Mother Nature needs to do is tell him she’s an Islamist, Mr. Obama would then surely let her alone.

The 14th annual 9/11 Memorial Ride will be roaring through the Valley. Tip of the cap to Tank Baird and all the organizers of the ride. The Memorial Coalition Motorcycle Ride is the oldest and longest routed tribute in our Country. My guess is over 8,000 riders will participate this year.

Get out and ride or line the route in support of the event. What a great way to say we remember, we respect, we honor and we are the United States of America!

God Bless America.

Jim Webb

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