Letters to the Editor

BY DI READERS | AUGUST 30, 2013 5:00 AM

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Death of a hero

Delbert Belton, an 88-year-old World War II veteran was robbed and brutally beaten to death by two 16-year-olds. Now why is this?

World War II was a time of American prosperity, but trying times for the military. The physically and mentally demanding requirements the war put on the men and women of the armed forces was tremendous. It was they and those who served before as well as after that we have to thank for our freedom we experience today.

However, it is not acceptable that a WWII veteran, Delbert Belton, was brutally beaten and robbed by two teenagers in Washington State on Aug. 22. It is not just the fact that this man served in one of the most trying wars; it is the fact that society has gotten to the point where beating an innocent 88-year-old man is an issue. Why has it gotten to this point? Where has all the respect and trust that America once experienced gone?

Delbert Belton survived numerous years overseas fighting the Pacific front, and yet America repays him with a horrendous death at the hands of two teens. Respect has left the characteristic of many American people, but it needs to come back. Belton proudly and bravely served for the United States to provide all freedom.

This death has brought about the need to express the need for more respect, and the military has taught me just that. Respect is one of the Army values. Without respect throughout the ranks of the military, America would not be where we are today.

It is brave men and women, such as Belton, who encourage and give meaning to my military career. I look up to the heroes who have gone overseas and either paid the ultimate sacrifice or fought fearlessly to protect others and themselves from harm. Without these heroes, I may not have had such a drive to become one myself.

It is just sad that our society has come to the point where beating elderly people, veterans or not, to the point of death for a few dollars is an issue. I just want to express my sympathy for Belton’s family and say thank you for your service, Delbert. You are an American hero, and that is what you will be remembered as.

Christine Bloyer

Vote for Barron

On Sept. 10, I will vote for Sara Barron for the Iowa City School Board. For the last nine years, Sara Barron has been my coworker at Big Brothers Big Sisters. I've seen firsthand her personal and professional commitment to equity, respect, and advocacy on behalf of youth and families. Sara will be a true representative of our entire district — for kids from each of our many communities, with needs of all variety. Her respect for the cultural, socioeconomic, and racial differences among our more than 10,000 kids is informed by her years of work in the community, and her natural, genuine interest in all people. Issues of equity are not confined to the unique cultures of each of our schools.

Committed stewards of equity in our district understand, appreciate, and champion our differences, while never letting them stand in the way of fairness for all. Sara’s commitment to fairness does not end with our students and teachers, though — you’ll see the same evenhanded approach with her fellow board members as, together, they tackle the issues our district needs to address. Vote fair and equal access for all. Vote Sara Barron.

Chanel Meredith
Iowa City resident

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