Of service, awards and trashy people
Friday, June 27, 2014 12:00 AM
If Betty Cobb read “Oh, the Places You’ll go!” by Dr. Seuss, she probably did not think she would go to the United Way of Greenwood and Abbeville Counties for such an extended period. But things have a way of working out like that. A door closed at Greenwood Mills 25 years ago, another opened -- and remained that way -- at the United Way office where she served in a couple of capacities before deciding to set aside more time for herself and husband in retirement years.
Known to many as the embodiment of what United Way stands for, Cobb was feted Tuesday night for her many years of service to the agency that funds many area nonprofits. Cobb is one of those people who stand out as a pillar not only in the community, but also in her work. Of course the agency will move forward without her, but she has been instrumental in shaping and making the local United Way what it is today. And for that, Cobb gets a big thumbs up.
This is a particularly good week for giving thumbs up. On Wednesday, the Greenwood Chamber honored several people for the impact they had on and in the community. Wayne Gantt, president of Blyth Funeral Home and Cremation Services and Oakbrook Memorial Park, received the 2014 Small Business Person of the Year honors. Boggero’s Services was named the state’s (yes, state, not just Greenwood) U.S. Small Business Administration’s S.C. Family-owned Business of the Year while J.B. Smith was given a special honor as the Duke Energy Citizenship and Service Award recipient.
Gantt is not 130 years old, but the business he operates has been serving greater Greenwood that many years, making it the longest-serving business in the county. That’s substantial. And Boggero’s has been in business 75 years. Smith, on the other hand, has given many of her years in quiet and faithful service to a place that is near and dear to her own heart, Bowers-Rodgers Children’s Home. All in all, a great occasion and worthy of a thumbs up at the very least.
Sure, say what you want about us being on a mission but once again we have to issue a thumbs down to the folks who think absolutely nothing of tossing their trash along our roads and highways. Volunteer crews regularly set out, usually on the weekend when they ought to be able to enjoy doing something relaxing or tending their own yards, and clean up the mess others make. It’s one thing when a child accidentally drops something out of the car window or the wind carries a loose tissue or candy wrapper out of the car and onto the roadside. It’s another, however, when people simply deliberately toss their fast-food bags, cups and containers out the window. Or their cigarette butts. And then there’s the real brazen jerk who doesn’t bother going to the county dump site and tosses his bags of trash along the roadway.
Maybe we need stricter laws. Sure would be good to catch these people and make them work on roadside cleanup for weeks at a time. In the extreme heat of summer. Without a water bottle, since they would likely toss that aside too. Or maybe we take a lesson from Singapore which, admittedly, is a bit too strict. Still, the streets there are extremely clean. Singapore has a litter law dating from 1968 that says litter bugs can be fined $1,000 for the first conviction and $5,000 for repeat convictions. Plus community labor, of course. On third offense, the litterer will also have to wear a sign reading “I am a litter lout.”