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Thumbs Up/Thumbs Down: Views by the Echo Press


Thumbs Down: Here’s a scam to take note of: e-mails that claim to be from Social Security office asking for a reply that contains the recipient’s date of birth, Social Security number and mother’s maiden name for “verification.” Social Security will not send you an e-mail asking for such personal information. When in doubt, or if you have any questions about correspondence you receive from Social Security, contact your local Social Security office, (320) 762-2454 in Alexandria, or call 1-800-772-1213.


Thumbs Up: The Marine Corps League, Runestone Detachment 1409 of Alexandria, recently received a generous donation from the Leaf Valley Game and Fish Conservation Club. The detachment was chartered earlier this year and plans to participate in area community events, including “Toys for Kids,” a toy drive for needy local families at Christmas time. “We want to become involved with veterans’ events and render assistance to all Marines, uniformed and civilian, as well as their widows and orphans,” noted Grant Haugen. The donation will also help the detachment meet its goal to be more involved with the Honor Guard at veteran funerals. The Marine Corps League meets the first Tuesday of the month at 7 p.m. at the Alexandria VFW Post 936. Donations may be sent to MCL Runestone Detachment 1409, 1102 3rd Avenue East, Alexandria, MN 56308.


Thumbs Up: Mary Anderson of Alexandria sends a huge thumbs up to Sarah Smith, Kathleen Clarke and Wendy Kuhnau, who all played a part in saving her life. “Without each of them and the ambulance crew responding to my total cardiac arrest at the RCC on August 16, I would not be here,” Anderson said. “I’m living every day to the fullest. Life is good.”


Thumbs Down: Driving on Alexandria Broadway is bumpier these days because of manhole covers that aren’t flush with the street. A reader sent us a thumbs down about the problem, which is more than just a mere nuisance. “Unfortunately, it leads to repairs car parts that break after many drives over and into the manholes,” the reader said. “They’re unavoidable unless we drive into the path of another vehicle.”


Thumbs Down: On the topic of driving, a reader is frustrated with motorists who have forgotten the point of stop signs. “Does stop no longer mean stop?” she asked. “It seems too many people drive out into the main roads and vehicles coming along who have the right of way have to brake to allow that.”


Thumbs Up: Here’s a double thumbs up to the Alexandria Golden K Kiwanis’ “Terrific Kids” program, which recognizes and encourages selfless acts of local 6th graders, and to the kids who helped make the club’s recent Pancake Day a big success. “Our club could simply not carry off this large event and fundraiser without the enthusiastic help of Terrific Kids,” said John Loken. “It is heartwarming to get this glimpse of our next generation of leaders and realize their dedication to values that we all share. Our club and every community activity that receives a contribution from Golden K directly benefits from the work of these young people, for they are terrific kids.”


Thumbs Up: A group of local volunteers packed up their construction tools and traveled to Elbow Lake in October to help the family of a deployed soldier. In just a couple days, the volunteers helped install siding, put in new windows and complete other weatherization duties. Owen Miller of Alexandria and the local chapter of Beyond the Yellow Ribbon helped coordinate the efforts.