O holy night the stars are brightly shining It is the night of our dear Savior’s birth

O holy night the stars are brightly shining It is the night of our dear Savior’s birth

Simply beautiful from my friend Alafairxvx’s blog…

Alafair

Have a blessed Christmas and  Peaceful New Year
December 25, 2016

O holy night the stars are brightly shining
It is the night of our dear Savior’s birth
Long lay the world in sin and error pining
Till He appeared and the soul felt its worth

A thrill of hope the weary world rejoices
For yonder breaks a new glorious morn
Fall on your knees
O hear the angels’ voices
O night divine
O night when Christ was born
O night divine o night
O night divine

A thrill of hope the weary world rejoices
For yonder breaks a new glorious morn
Fall on your knees
O hear the angels’ voices
O night divine
O night when Christ was born
O night divine o night
O night divine

Ooh yes it was
Ooh it is the night of our dear Savior’s birth
Oh yeah, oh yeah, oh yeah, yeah
It…

View original post 8 more words

My Life Has Become An Old Country Song…

I don’t even now where to begin anymore for it seems that every day something else goes wrong. Still waiting for my January 31, 2017 appointment for YAG procedure  (but only one eye) to remove the scar tissue. The office can’t even give me a general idea of how long before the second eye is done. Then I have to go back to be fitted for glasses and the way they book far in advance I’m thinking that won’t happen until March or April. Meanwhile I have to keep replacing the cheater glasses as my vision worsens. I’m currently at the next to the strongest strength and have to practically have to hold something directly in front of my face to be able to read it. Then of course there’s the green circles and arches that appear every time I look directly at a light. Visual disturbances have always been a primary trigger for migraines so it’s like a vicious circle. I don’t want to keep the lights dimmed because of Sasha’s impaired vision so I basically try to avoid looking at lights or lamp fixtures. I don’t go out unless it’s to the doctors so haven’t left the house since Dec. 6.

When I saw the new neurologist on December 2, I was told his staff would call me as soon as they got the preauthorization for the Botox  injects for migraines (it’s very expensive so needs a PA). They also said that once they had the PA they’d get me right in because I  haven’t had Botox since June 13 and it’s supposed to be given every 3 months. I’ve been getting Botox for several years and my insurance company approves in 48 hours max. Since my appointment was on a Friday I hoped to hear from them no later than the following Thursday, Dec. 8. Nothing. So I called their office on Monday Dec 12 and after speaking to two different people was transferred to “Chrissy”. Left a VM for her around 10 am but no callback. Long story short I called every day and always had to leave a VM. On Thursday Dec. 15 I called and instead of the elusive Chrissy’s line I chose the prompt for making an appointment. Told the woman my story and upon checking my file she didn’t see anything about the Botox PA. I called again on Friday Dec. 16 and used a line I haven’t used in several years. Once again I chose the prompt for making an appointment and when a woman answered I offered my condolences on Chrissy’s death then asked to be connected with whomever took her place. The woman was quite shocked and said “Chrissy’s not dead!!!”. I started my response in a sickening sweet voice I break out from time to time and said “Oh dear me, I must apologize then because I surely thought she was. Followed that with full bitch mode by saying “Why else would someone fail to return nearly a dozen phone calls? What other reason could there be for such egregious incompetence? And by the way, will you send me an application because I’ve always wanted a job where I did nothing yet collected a paycheck”. She was really rattled but assured me she would get a message to Chrissy. I laughed and said that may be but she wouldn’t call back. She said she’s send the message from her terminal to Chrissy’s. Then I told her to add that IF Chrissy called back she would be reaching an advanced practice nurse so don’t even try to give me any BS “because that won’t float”. I didn’t even bother waiting to see if Chrissy (whom I’d decided may not be real) to call; I called my insurance company who has always been wonderful to work with. Upon checking the file and phone log, she told me someone from the neurologist’s office called on Tuesday Dec. 6 but something must have come up as they said they would call back in a minute. The insurance company said there was no record of a callback. I really had to fight to hold back tears at this point as I was beyond frustrated. The insurance company said they would have their pharmacy department reach out to the office and that she personally would reach out. By the way, never did hear from Chrissy that day. Om Tuesday Dec. 20 the same woman from the insurance company called at 9am. She started off ny asking if the neuro’s office had contacted me and I said no. She said that both she and the pharmacy department left VM’s the previous week and they had not been returned either. She asked my permission to open up a case so they could track this providers office and of course I said yes. She also suggested I call the office to at least make the appointment for the injections as they had approved them. Lo and behold  before I had a chance to call the neuro’s office they called me. After I got up from the floor where I had collapsed in shock, Chrissy told me she had taken a few days off the previous week. I won’t bore you with the details of what I said but it wasn’t pretty. She countered with “I was waiting on your insurance”. I followed up with something that also wasn’t pretty. She told me she had good news for me though ~ she had my appointment date. January 2, 2017. I was like WHAT?????? So by the time I get the injects it will be 7 months since I last had them and I’ll be so far off schedule that they won’t be effective until the second set of injections in April. I’m going to get them in Jan. but have already started looking for a different neurologist. He might be great but his staff is hands down the worst I’ve ever encountered and since moving here I’ve met my share of rude and incompetent medical support staff. I’m just not putting up with this nonsense all the time. Before I bid a farewell to Facebook I met a woman in a GSD group from Maine. We struck up a casual conversation and then I didn’t see her for a few days. When she came back online she said she’d had a “breakthrough” migraine. Not knowing what type of medication she took I told her of the good results I’d had with Botox. She said that she gets the injects every 3 months in Worcester MA. I remember being shocked as from her location to Worcester is over 250 miles and a 4 hour drive ~ one way! I wondered why she would travel so far but after my “Maine Botox Experiences (yes plural) I think I can understand. I initially made an appointment with a neuro in Lewiston (same city the current one is located) in 2011. They booked me out over 7 months which put me into 2012. A week before my appointment the office called to say they had to cancel my appointment as the neuro was out. I said let’s book it NOW. Then they said they didn’t know when he’s be back. Very odd. I called a week later and they said he was still out. A few weeks later I received a letter saying he had left the practice but they would be contacting me within 10 days to schedule me with one of the other providers. Yes you guessed it ~ they never called. Then I made an appointment with a pain treatment center that  did Botox for Migraines. Also in Lewiston which is 55 miles one way.  Now Botox has to be refrigerated so you pick it up from the pharmacy on the way to the appointment and keep it in a small cooler bag. First visit went well. The second visit I picked up the Botox and we were about 15 miles from Lewiston when I received a call  from the office saying that Dr. XYZ “doesn’t feel comfortable doing Botox and would prefer you book with Dr ABC”. I said “Are you kidding me? My appointment is in less than 30 minutes, you KNOW I live over an hour away, and Dr. XYZ decides NOW that’s he not comfortable dong Botox???”. I had to go the following week to see Dr. ABC whom I actually liked better. Saw him 2 more times and bam! The pain center closed. At this point I gave up on Botox I really did. Then a few months later I was driving down a road in the town closest to me (16 miles away) when I saw something that made me slam on the brakes. Hanging outside a medical building was a shingle for the neuro I had to wait over 7 months for and then he poofed from the practice! I jotted down his phone number, made an appointment and got in within a few weeks. He’s the one who’s been giving me injections until he announced this past August that he was closing his practice in September and relocating to Kentucky. I swear to God this is so bizarre I couldn’t make this up as I’m not that creative. And as I said in a previous migraine post, the states are clamping down on doctors so to get a small prescription for pain medication is like pulling teeth with a pair of tweezers ~ virtually impossible.

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I am most definitely not in the holiday spirit. It was with great reluctance that  I put a tabletop fiber-optic tree out today and called it good. It’s hard to be “ho ho ho” when you can’t see the floor, you’re terrified to walk outside lest you fall because you can’t see the ground and lights cause visual disturbances which in turn triggers a migraine. Extremely stressful and it’s gotten to the point where I don’t even want to see anybody. In the past when I was stressed or feeling pressured I turned to books or knitting but haven’t done either in over  year. I was dreading Christmas anyway because my mind has been drifting back to last Christmas. Our dear friend spent the day with us and following dinner we sat in the great room with the fire crackling and watched movies. I was still very upset over the death of my dog on November 5 and it was his sarcastic humor that got me through both Thanksgiving and Christmas . Yet for some unknown reason I never took a single picture either holiday and after he committed suicide in April 2016  I’ll never have that opportunity again. He was our adopted family member; we spent every holiday together. It’s more difficult than I’d imagined.

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline

1-800-273-8255

So I spend my days just piddling around, use the dictating app on my laptop to write a blog entry or Siri on my iPhone to make a call for me. The dictating app hasn’t mastered my NY accent so I have to try and manually correct the apps interpretation of some of my words (don’t even ask). And Siri the brat. Took me 2 years with my previous phone to train her and now I have to start all over again. Just today I told her to call “Mt. Blue Pharmacy” to which she replied “I don’t see a listing for your mother”.

Since this has been such a whiney post I’ll end with something funny. I have the new iPhone 7 but have only set up the most basic features until I can see better. There’s a new feature that, when enabled, lets you say “Hey Siri” and she’ll answer. The other night for the heck of it I said “Hey Siri”. The response was definitely a Depends moment. Siri said “I can’t talk right now as I’m having a staring contest with iPhone 7 Plus and I think I’m winning”.

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The Staring Contest
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Reason I chose iPhone 7 over iPhone 7 Plus

Maine: The Way Life Should Be ~ NOT…

Maine: The Way Life Should Be ~ NOT…

The hour is quite late so I’m deviating from my normal style of posting because I am so disturbed by what I heard on the news as I walked past the television that I am unable to rest. I realized after hearing the story on WGME 13, a CBS affiliate station covering Maine, that I live in a state where the very agencies created to help those in need often turn a blind eye ~for months. While this story may not be a graphic murder scene or the never-ending election debates, it nonetheless is truly unconscionable especially now, in the season of giving, kindness and faith.

The cover photo for this post is one of the first things one sees upon entering the state. Similar signs dot the major highways as well as secondary roads. I even photographed a weather worn sign on the Appalachian Trail in 2015.

I think the meaning behind the slogan is that life in Maine is perfect and perhaps to some it is. I personally find it less than ideal and honestly cannot wait to leave. The state and I have, shall I say, a mutual dislike for each other. I’ve grown weary of the never-ending sound of gunfire, of chasing hunters off my clearly marked property every year, of picking up empty beer cans, burned out firecrackers and an occasional condom from my private river area. Tired of making a doctor’s appointment only to be scheduled 4-7 months out. I’m done.

And what news report cold have angered me so much you wonder? Ir was a story of two women actually. One is a victim and the other the  CEO of KVCAP a non-profit organization that helps “hundreds of thousands of residents overcome the challenges of poverty”.

On your left is Peggy Lane, a homeowner in Central Maine who has been without heat since the beginning of November because her furnace broke and she doesn’t have the money to get a new one. Peggy has been living in extreme cold along with her small dog and her cat. Tonight the temperature is well below zero and the coldest on record for this part of December in 27 years. Peggy and her faithful companions have been making do with a small space heater and many layers of clothing and coats. On the left is Suzanne Walsh .CEO of  KVCAP. Her organization is aware of Peggy’s dire situation but recently advised Peggy  that they have to put her repair out for bid first. before they can help her due to federal regulations bah blah blah.

In desperation Peggy reached out to WGME’s I Team and today reporter Jon Crisos visited her. Here is the story:

“I’m just so cold” — woman without heat for weeks turns to I-Team for help

by Jon Chrisos

Friday, December 16th 2016

WEST GARDINER (WGME) — On this coldest day of the season, a West Gardiner woman doesn’t have any heat. Peggy Lane has been living in the cold in her home for more than a month now and it’s all because of a fight over her boiler. “It’s been a nightmare, it’s just been a complete nightmare,” Lane said.  As the wind whips outside, frost covers the windows of her home. “I’m really cold, and I’m miserable, but I’m just trying to get through this the best I can because I know people have it worse than I do,” Lane said. She said she hasn’t had any heat since early November when her boiler cracked and leaked all over the basement. Since then she’s been trying to get low-income assistance to replace it. “Obviously I do not have the money or I would put the boiler in,” Lane said.

She got a letter Thursday from KVCAP, which administers federal funding, telling her they could help, but would have to put the project out to bid.

“I’m just so cold. People shouldn’t live like this; it’s not right,” she said.

Lane called the CBS 13 On Your Side I-Team to see if we could help.

We asked KVCAP if there’s a process for emergency heating assistance.

KVCAP CEO Suzanne Walsh called back to explain based on funding rules, they’re required to get the lowest price for every project.

“We have to operate under very strict guidelines because we’re ambassadors of federal funds,” Walsh said.  However, after talking with Maine Housing, she said they’ll now work to expedite the bid process and get the boiler replaced.

“We definitely want to work the homeowner and make sure she is warm and safe,” Walsh said.  KVCAP also told us they’d send over some larger space heaters and would start getting bids Friday.

If you need heat help, Maine Housing suggests you apply for the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP).

As of Friday, we’re told 32,700 applications have been processed in Maine and the average benefit so far this heating season is $732.

 

This is truly one of the saddest stories I have heard in many a year. It’s also inexcusable.

I Am WILD!!! I Literally Just Blogged About A Flawed VA System Earlier Tonight…

I Am WILD!!! I Literally Just Blogged About A Flawed VA System Earlier Tonight…

Where do they find their employees? Do they hire them fresh out of rehab or prison? Do they land in Florida on a boat? The Bay Pines VA Healthcare System in Seminole Florida is substandard ~ and that’s putting it mildly! That this occurred In February 2016 but just reported by the AP today is even more distressing.

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The Welcome on their homepage:

Honoring America’s Veterans with quality health care services, part of the largest integrated health care

These uncaring, lazy, incompetent examples of human waste aren’t worthy enough to walk in a United States Veteran’s boots ~ not even a few feet! As a health care professional and an American citizen I am appalled beyond words for there is NO excuse to justify this abhorrent lack of action. I don’t want to hear about staffing issues, other patients, change of shift, an in-house emergency. NOTHING the Veterans Administration can say or do could possible validate such incompetency and lack of care. I am so angry, so ashamed that I cannot even write a rational post so am going to hyperlink then copy and paste.

VA hospital left body in shower room for 9 hours

SEMINOLE, Fla. (AP) — Staff at a Veterans Affairs hospital in Florida left the body of a veteran in a shower for nine hours after the veteran died and proper pickup procedures to the morgue weren’t followed.

The Tampa Bay Times on Sunday (http://bit.ly/2goW2NK ) reported that an internal investigation concluded that staff at the Bay Pines VA Healthcare System failed to provide appropriate post-mortem care to the veteran’s body.

The investigative report said that leaving the body unattended for so long increased the chance of decomposition.

The unnamed veteran died in February after spending time in hospice care. The hospital’s Administrative Investigation Board ordered retraining for staff.

Hospital spokesman Jason Dangel said hospital officials view what happened as unacceptable but have implemented changes to make sure it doesn’t happen again.

“We feel that we have taken strong, appropriate and expeditious steps to strengthen and improve our existing systems and processes within the unit,” Dangel said. “It is our expectation that each veteran is transported to their final resting place in the timely, respectful and honorable manner. America’s heroes deserve nothing less.”

The investigation found that once the veteran died, hospice staff members requested a staffer known as a “transporter” to get the body moved to the morgue.

The transporter told them to follow proper procedures and notify dispatchers, but that request was never made, so nobody showed up to take the body away.

Instead, it was moved to a hallway in the hospice and then to the shower room where it was unattended for more than nine hours.

Some hospice staff “demonstrated a lack of concern, attention and respect” for the veteran, according to the investigative report.

The investigation also found that staff failed to check a 24-hour nursing report that would indicate whether the death was reported properly, and staff failed to update a nursing organizational chart that hampered efforts to determine who was in charge.

Information from: Tampa Bay Times (St. Petersburg, Fla.), http://www.tampabay.com.

Why wasn’t this reported for 10 months? Considering the media are like jackals? And how DARE they write this:

Instead, it was moved to a hallway in the hospice and then to the shower room where it was unattended for more than nine hours.

Whomever this person was, be it 25 years of age or 85 years, they were A. a US veteran and B. a human being. They were loved, a son or a daughter, perhaps a spouse and a parent, and they defended OUR country. How DARE the press refer to them as “it”? How dare they refer to any deceased person as “it”? I have pronounced convicted pedophiles dead yet I never told the ancillary staff to “take care of it”. There are boundaries one simply doesn’t cross…

In closing I found even more detailed information in:

VA staff left veteran’s body in shower nine hours, tried to hide mistakes

PTSD: Secrets, Lies and Closed Doors…

PTSD: Secrets, Lies and Closed Doors…

PTSD is brutal

Those of us who suffer from it often morph into another person just to deal with the demons in our head. Some hide by purposely not disclosing anything about the incident(s) or events, even to spouses or significant others. Some lie when asked. I usually do. When people ask me about my childhood I answer with what they expect to hear ~ “it was good” when in reality it was a nightmare full of horrors. Many of us compartmentalize by locking the trauma behind a closed door. For many men and women who’ve been through war, the battles continue long after the guns go silent. Sadly, their pain is often compounded by a VA system that is rife with problems and at best, difficult to navigate. Often the wait time is 60 days if not longer. A person who served our country in war should not return home only to do battle with the government agency that is supposed to be their lifeline. Many have a revolving door of therapists which in my opinion prevents the formation of that important bond, the continuity which is an integral component in the healing process. I’ve spoken to veterans that have had to “prove” to the VA that their brains are somehow hardwired differently now after returning from war. Why? Who knows why some  engage in battle and return unscathed by the sound of gunfire, bombs and smell of death while others are profoundly affected.

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I’ve blogged in the past about the constant almost year round gunfire in the Western Mountains of Maine. Coupled with the firecrackers/fireworks from late spring to November, someone could go bonkers, especially a war veteran who is triggered by the unexpected sound of gunfire. In my July 4, 2016 post called Caution! Major Whine Around The Corner… I ranted how the never-ending firecrackers and sound of gunshots disrupt our lives to the point where I’ve decided to list my house next spring.  Shortly after I posted that I had a chance conversation with a man I know slightly from living down the road. He used to wave at me and The Germs whenever we walked by.  We were at the dump of all places and I was still ranting about the incessant noise that emanates from our mountains. I learned he was a Vietnam veteran and suffers from PTSD. He told me he’d tried everything but because the gunshots and firecrackers are on any given day, there’s no way to avoid them. Knowing the noise was worse in the warmer months I asked if turning on the AC worked but he didn’t have one. We don’t really need them because of being in the mountains and the ones I’d brought with me when I moved didn’t fit my windows as I have casements. I did however buy one that would fit just to block the noise out. The next day we took one of our older ones down (he doesn’t have casement windows) and offered it to him. He was reluctant but after I explained it was just sitting there and really would help, he accepted it. For a military veteran, I can’t imagine what it must be like to be subjected to unexpected random noise like that. I read where many veterans with PTSD place signs in their yards:

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I’m not sure there’s a specific scientific reason, empirical evidence that can answer that question. And honestly why should they have to prove themselves? PTSD has been accepted as a valid and legitimate medical diagnosis. Yet every day many veterans fight not only the demons in their head but the inane bureaucracy of the Veterans Administration, a government branch that was created to help our returning heroes, not treat them as second class citizens. They gave their all; is this really the best America has to offer in return? 

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For more information about PTSD and veterans, please visit these sights:

Military With PTSD

The PTSD Help Network

War (What Is It Good For)  🎤🎤🎤

Edwin Starr

1970

 

My Eyes……

My Eyes……

I don’t even know where to begin. I called the specialty practice on October 6 (the day I fell in my vet’s parking lot) and after two weeks they called back and gave me an appointment to see an optometrist on November 1. She said I had a lot of scar tissue on the corneas and recommended they be removed by a laser procedure called a YAG. She offered to RX me glasses then but I said I’d wait for the YAG as it might possibly change my distance vision. She also highly recommended Restasis for dry eyes, a problem I have. She said they would set me up with Dr. Garvey, an ophthalmologist within the practice for the YAG. The receptionist gave me an appointment for December 6.

No one ever said it was for a meet and greet! Not to mention that this doctor was obviously in a hurry. I told her I haven’t been able to drive for  months because I don’t want to endanger  other drivers. Yet less than 15 minutes later she told me when I come back for the YAG, come early in the day so I have time for everything to wear off before I drive home. I reminded her I gave up driving several months ago. Then she said, “Oh you must take public transportation”. I debated whether I should smack her then or wait till later because when she initially greeted me she asked where Rangeley was and I told her it was a 2.5 hour drive one way. I mentioned the Restasis and she had nothing positive to say about it at all and discouraged it’s use. She told me the scar tissue was minimal and shouldn’t really be affecting my vision. Honest to God I sat on my hands at that point. She said she would start with the right eye then I would come back for the left. I told her I had previously had punctul plugs which were like manna from heaven (small inserts that go into lower tear duct thus keeping moisture in and easing the dryness of eyes). I told her the first ones that were put in came out within a week so the next pair were buried deep. Told her that were like manna from heaven for over a year until I had sinus surgery in January 2015 and the blood that forcibly comes out from your tear ducts must have dislodged them. She went to see if they had any (God in a huge 4 level multi practitioner practice like that why wouldn’t they???)  I heard her tell the tech in the hallway “I know I know I’ll be right there. I’m hurrying”. She came back in, inserted the plugs (which looked awfully small) and told me the left one was “probably going to come out”. I agreed and told her it felt like it would (not my first punctal plug rodeo). She flew off. I went to the receptionist who gave me an appointment for January 31. I told her the punctul plug was already dislodging and she said “Call me if it does” It was gone by the time we got home and the right one came out about 9am today. I called the receptionist, left a voice mail at 10:30am but never heard back. Then I decided to call the optometrist I’d seen in the practice on November 1. Figured since they make you wait months for appointments I’d make mine now. Left a voice mail there as well. A girl called me back about 4pm. She told me that I couldn’t make the appointment until I had the YAG procedure (a direct contradiction of what the optometrist had told me). Well at the rate they book I won’t have the second YAG until February and be seen for glasses in March so why couldn’t I make an appointment now to cut down the wait time?  She said the optometrists receptionist was off today but she’s leave a message for her to call me. $20 says she doesn’t. Then she made a huge mistake. She told me people my age have visual issues and it’s part of the aging process. I JUST TURNED 50 IN NOVEMBER!!! She said “I know how you feel” I told her not to patronize me as she had no idea how I felt. That all this is because I lost my glasses while hiking the Appalachian Trail; that I had zero difficulty seeing prior to that incident and that I’d never worn glasses for reading but now I cannot even see the floor in my own house. So unless she REALLY knows how someone feels as an advanced practice healthcare professional I recommend she refrain from condescending remarks.

I am so stressed over this that I’m grinding my teeth so badly during the night that I’ve destroyed my custom made bite guard. Now I think I’ve damaged the root of a tooth because it hurts like hell. Had this happen once before and had to have  dental implants. I’ve gained 30# from inactivity and rarely leave the house for fear of falling. If I could I would sue my former ophthalmologist of 10 years but the laws are very limited in Maine. I had a two part hysterectomy  for what was really a kidney stone and there was nothing I could do. Partial hysterectomy in January and full one three months later in April. I woke up in Recovery Room with the same pain. I lived with it until October when a doctor who was merely a friend asked why I always looked gray. After having a meltdown in front of him he said “I’ll order you a STAT IVP (test) for tomorrow morning. By the time I got home from the hospital there was a message from him asking that I call ASAP. Turns out I had the mother lode of kidney stones and they had to go in surgically from my back to remove it.

This sucks and now I probably need $$$ dental work.  The only thing I’m sure of is I am NOT having any procedures done by the doctor I saw yesterday. If she cannot pay attention to what I’m saying then she’s not getting within 10 feet of my eyes.

Love,

She Who Needs A Walker because I’m so freaking old and decrepit. Yet I banged out the highest mountain in this state , Mount Katahdin, in less than a half day. And THAT was  my starting point! After that I entered and completed the 100 Mile Wilderness. Oh but wait! I could still see then.

K9 Lina ~ Even In Death Denied Justice Part 4…

K9 Lina ~ Even In Death Denied Justice Part 4…

I was going to end the tragic story of K9 Lina’s death with my previous post however I inevitably knew that one more egregious injustice needed to be told. It has frustrated me for over two months yet I am helpless.

On September 27, 2016, a woman from NJ wrote and launched a ForceChange petition asking for:

Justice For Dog Locked Inside Hot Car Until She Died
Posted by Lindsay Savitzky

The dog Ms. Savitzky  sought justice for was K9 Lina. However, this is the photograph she used at the head of her petition:

img_9601She also targeted the wrong agency as the petition was to the attention of  Director William J. Bryant of the Arkansas State Police but in another area of the petition letter she refers to K9 Lina’s handler as a deputy with Madison County Sheriff’s Office (MCSO).

I looked at Ms. Savitzky’s profile on the ForceChange petition and she describes herself as:

I’m a woman in her 30s who lives in New Jersey and cares deeply for the welfare of people and animals. I volunteer at RBARI once a week, cleaning the kennel and socializing with cats looking for homes.

RBARI is Ramapo Bergen Animal Refuge in Oakland NJ (Bergen County) which indicated  Ms. Savitzky lives in the general area of my hometown. Since there was no way of contacting her, I sent an email to ForceChange describing the errors. A week passed without a response so I wrote again. I began noticing comments by people directly on the petition’s front page also outlining the errors but the petition remained the same for a month. I posted towards the end of October as did several law enforcement officers. Some even gave links to K9 Lina’s photo. She was a Belgian Malinois in a MCSO vehicle, not a springer spaniel in a red sports car. Meanwhile, time and energy that coud have been focused on Lina was being spent trying to have an incorrect hence invalid petition corrected. Digressing a moment, this is not the first time I have encountered gross inaccuracies in a ForceChange petition. In October they published a petition about a man who sexually assaulted a dog, written by a woman whose bio said she is a copy editor. Unfortunately the petition targeted an agency in a completely different state than which the offense occurred and the suspect lived. After two emails ForceChange corrected it.

K9 Lina’s petition however was not being corrected nor the writer or ForceChange responding to emails or comments left on the page. On October 30, 2016, I sent yet another email to ForceChange:

This petition is all wrong! I REALLY wish petition writers would fact check before putting something like this out. This is HORRIBLE! Do you even know what a Belgiun Malinois looks like? Are you afraid to say the handlers name? Because good handlers aren’t – his name is Deputy Jonathon Cornelison of the Madison County Sheriff’s Dept in Huntsville Arkansas. He works under Sheriff Philip Morgan. Need more information? On Sept. 9, 2016 he left his PARTNER, K9 Lina in HIS squad car parked in HIS driveway
for over 6 hrs. During that time he took his children to daycare, helped a friend fix a lawnmower – here read it for yourself! It was 91 F outside BTW.

http://www.4029tv.com/article/madison-co-announces-discipline-for-k9-handler-after-dog-s-death/5265623

And since you obviously don’t know what a Belgian Malinois looks like or bothered to Google K9 Lina, here is her picture!

http://www.arkansasmatters.com/news/local-news/prosecutor-not-filing-charges-against-deputy-for-k9-death

On November 1, 2016 the petition was changed. It was now targeted  to Madison County Sheriff Phillip Morgan and the spaniel in a red car had been replaced with one of a K9 ~ just the wrong one! The picture was of a GSD whereas K9 Lina was a Belgian Malinois.

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This dog is K9 Conan, who until his retirement and subsequent death in 2015, was a bomb sniffing dog with the Outagamie County Sheriff’s Dept in Appleton Wisconsin. Even if Linda Savitzky and/or ForceChange doesn’t know the difference between the two breeds, all it takes is to look at the K9’s shield to see it clearly doesn’t say Madison County Sheriff’s Department. Plus if you zoom in just a tad you can read ‘K-9 Outagamie County Sheriff’s Dept.’ When K9 Conan died in 2015, Outagamie County Sheriff’s Dept released a private video of Conan singing along to Toby Keith. 🎤⬅︎

By this point I’m not even going to pretend I was nice. To put a picture of a deceased K9 from a department over 700 miles away is a not only a disgrace but disrespectful to both of these brave dogs. To be honest I was more upset over K9 Lina because it was obvious from my brief research that K9 Conan was valued and loved whereas K9 Lina was left in a hot car for over 6 hours in 90 degree weather where she died a slow and agonizing death while her handler cavorted around town helping a friend fix a lawnmower, paying bills,stopping in an auto parts store, going to the sheriff’s department and meeting an officer from another department at a sports bar ~ all on his time off.

I talked to other officers and they were just as surprised and disgusted as I was yet to this day none of our emails have been answered and the petition remains online and incorrect.  I wrote ForceChange yet again:

I’ve previously written you about the inaccuracies in this petition which commenters are pointing out as well yet you fail to respond.  I found it necessary  to email you last week because a petition written by a woman (who states she’s a copy editor) was directed to officials in the WRONG  state. I’ve noticed this is a trend with many petitions on your site which makes me leery of signing or promoting any of them.  It is not my job to edit every petition launched at ForceChange to ensure it’s accuracy. The petition I referenced does a disservice to both police K9s because the writer doesn’t have her facts correct and because ForceChange has neglected to address it when notified. Responsible K9 handlers are as appalled as I. Wrong dog, wrong target.  In closing,  kindly remove my name from any of your mailing lists and for your edification I’m attaching the corrected photos.

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this-is-lina

Next I scrolled through Savitsky’s numerous petitions, found a site that she frequents and posted an open comment:

While I applaud your dedication and the work you do on behalf of animals, you wrote a ForceChange petition seeking justice for K9 Lina’s hot car death in AR. It was pointed out to ForceChange over a month ago that the wrong agency was targeted and that the springer spaniel in the red sports car was NOT Lina. Commenters including LEOs left links to K9 Lina’s picture. Emails were sent to ForceChange and finally the petition was edited. It is now worse than ever! I’m not going into all the errors here but read the comments on the petition YOU wrote. To top it off the dog’s photo you now have on the petition is a K9 but NOT Lina. It is K9 Conan, a bomb sniffing dog from WI who died in 2015. His badge on the picture clearly reads Outagamie County Sheriff’s Depart. K9 yet the petition insinuates it is K9 Lina. They weren’t  even the same breed! K9 Conan was a GSD; K9 Lina was a Belgian Malinois.  First the petition targeted the State Police who had NO jurisdiction since the handler is a Madison County deputy. Now it targets the sheriff who can’t charge the deputy since the Prosecutor (who is over the sheriff) decided no charges. Law enforcement is in an uproar over this Linda. Do you dislike them that much that you and ForceChange will allow an invalid petition to stay online uncorrected? Because if you do shame on you. You are no better than the deputy who left Lina to roast to death in a hot car for 6 hours!

Once again, no response so we give up. This grossly inaccurate petition just compounds the tragedy of K9 Lina’s death. The day after she was left in a hot car for hours by her handler, Sheriff Phillip Morgan  blamed her death on the deputy’s  50 hour work week and lack of sleep. Sheriff  Morgan described the dog’s death as a “bad accident.  Matt Durrett, 4th Judicial District Prosecuting Attorney declined to press charges against her handler, Deputy Jonathon Cornelison. The day following her death a Facebook support page was set up ~ for Jonathon Cornelison where very little is posted about the loss of this K9 officer. A memorial wasn’t held for K9 Lina until November 12.

It’s as if she never existed.The entire area seems to have an ‘out of sight, out of mind’ attitude. Making the situation more sad, she only served with MCSO for one year.

As for petition writers, to be blunt, if you don’t know the FACTS, stop writing garbage like this as it denigrates the seriousness of a K9’s death because of a handler’s negligence and in turn, that incompetent handler tarnishes the badges of thousands of excellent handlers who would take a bullet for their dog.

“A K9 officer is a universal dog that can detect, track, guard, and apprehend. A K9 dog is a separate officer hat serves his duty just like any human officer.
Any offense against the dog makes you subject to prosecution and you may end up being incarcerated.”

Apparently this does not apply to Arkansas.

I keep hoping for the day I don’t have to post this.

The first to sense the hostility of a suspect,

The first to react to protect his master.

The first to enter where danger lurks.

The first to detect the hidden intruder.

The first to take action against violence.

The first to sense his master’s joy.

The first to know his master’s sorrow or fear.

The first to give his life in defense of his master.

The last to be forgotten by those who work with others like him.

They know him as a “Partner,” not just an animal.

k9-lina-ar

Lina, I care…