Sunday, Dec. 2, 2001

By Staff
Perhaps we've lost our way'
To the Editor:
If this is a Christian community, who do we have such things as a woman in her underwear on the walls of the public areas of the mall and movies about witchcraft and sorcery in our theaters.
Perhaps we have lost our way.
Pastor Wade Demers
A division' among Christians
To the Editor:
I was shocked to learn that there is a division among Christians as to whether Harry Potter was good or evil.
Quite plainly in the Bible are the following references: "But for the … sorcerers … their part will be in the lake that burns with fire and brimstone … (Revelation 21:8) and "Now the deeds of the flesh are evident … sorcery … that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God." (Galatians 5:19-21) and "… stops his ears from hearing about bloodshed and shuts his eyes from looking upon evil"… (Isaiah 33:14-16).
So, why are Christian divided on this subject. The word is "compromise."
Deborah Keller
Warwick, R.I.
Crestwood teacher, students commended
To the Editor:
Thank you for The Star's excellent coverage of Explore teacher Susan Hester and her students concerning their trip to the international Co-Nect technology convention in Toronto, Canada. We at Crestwood are proud of this group and of the leadership and innovation Miss Hester offers them.
The four students, James Dubose, Amber Edwards, Lindsey Nicklas and Rayford Parnell offered highlights of their trip at the November meeting of the Meridian Public School Board. Mrs. Dottie Dudley, our music teacher who accompanied the group on the trip, spoke of the students' days in Toronto. It was delightful to hear the students tell of their first ride on an airplane, a taxi, a trolley and a ferry. They told of their 70-minute presentation to the international group at which they were the only students who presented. These students were outstanding ambassadors for our school, our district, city and state.
It is commendable that Miss Hester gave so much credit to the students for their hard work and for their presentation, which earned high marks and words of praise from those who attended.
However, I want to recognize her for her vision, her diligence and her dedication to the students she teaches. She is a true asset to our school and district. Certainly her students share her vision, but she also encourages them to set their own goals and take the steps to reach them.
I admire her tireless efforts and increasing creativity. I commend her for helping her students reach worthy goals.
Congratulations to Miss Hester, her students and Mrs. Dudley for a wonderful trip and for representing Meridian in such a positive light.
Diane Toms
Crestwood Elementary
An extraordinary life
To the Editor:
The obituary in The Star read, "Jo Beth Hawkins, age 52, passed away at her home today." Left unreported was the life of a remarkable lady.
Her father, the late Harold Hawkins, served with distinction as an Air Force mechanic overseas in World War II. After the war, he returned home and established an auto repair business. He and Miss Alice Joyce McNair married, and they were the parents of a son, Harold Wayne, now a practicing physician in Mobile, and a daughter, Jo Beth.
During her high school years, Jo Beth was a drum major of the band and her proficiency and performance there rewarded her with a multi-year scholarship to Vanderbilt University. During her stay at Vanderbilt, she contracted an illness which left her bound to a wheelchair for life. Not to be deterred, she earned two degrees from Vanderbilt; worked for the state of Tennessee, then for the state of Mississippi upon her return to her home state, both in the field of programs for the disabled.
When her health would no longer allow full-time work, she still refused to stop her efforts on behalf of the disabled. Her mother obtained a van and drove her wherever and whenever she could participate in any way to improve life of her peers. Jo Beth was diligent in her work with her computer and was an active member of a city committee to provide access to public transportation for the disabled.
It was the complete understanding, undivided attention and the loving mother/daughter relationship that made it possible for Jo Beth to continue her dedicated work for the disabled to the very last of her productive life.
We applaud Jo Beth's life and recognize another remarkable lady Jo Beth's mom.
Charles Birdsong