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In The Lake Oswego Review's mailbox this week: A more humane death; Walk the walk; Making waves; Great swim meet; A (swim) team effort; Let there be light; Expand Hallinan Woods; A green connection; ARTmart's a wrap; Protect Hallinan Woods

A more humane death

I have just finished the article in the most recent issue of the Lake Oswego Review, "Husband arrested in Lake Oswego slaying." I am disheartened, since the people of Oregon have passed a law that could have prevented this family tragedy.

I am a retired hematologist and oncologist here in Lake Oswego. I have had many stories with people with end-stage cancers. In 1996, the law that allowed a person to decide about their end of life took effect, the Death with Dignity Act. I do not know if Mr. or Mrs. Winchester knew about what options she would have with the Death with Dignity Act, but if they did, her end of life might have ended in a much more humane and dignified manner. The sons also would not have a father in jail.

I continue to support a person's right to choose how they die when they have a terminal illness. I volunteer with End of Life Choices Oregon (EOLCOR). If her personal physician (internist or oncologist) would not have wanted to guide them through the process, then I or one of the other volunteer doctors could have assisted her.

Often, people never take the actual medicine to end their life, but they do have a chance to talk about options that are available — hospice care, continued medical care, research studies or ending their life when they choose, not when the cancer chooses.

It would be quite helpful if you could follow up with an article about the Death with Dignity Act in Oregon. If one person is spared this type of life-ending story, then it will be well worth the paper's time and energy.

I just had to write this message to you. They lived one block from me, and now every time I pass, I see tragedy when there could have been a more humane ending of Mrs. Winchester's life.

Mark Rarick, M.D.

Lake Oswego

Walk the walk

Thank you to Joe Buck for telling it like it is ("City officials must back words with real change," Feb. 7). Lots of people like to talk the talk, but when it's time to walk the walk, they call Uber. Time to stand up, Lake Oswego leaders, for what you say you believe in.

Too bad Joe's not on the council anymore. We need him.

Peter Toll

Lake Oswego

Making waves

The Lake Oswego aquatic community is made up of outstanding volunteers who spend countless hours each year ensuring children and young adults have many opportunities to take advantage of aquatic sports and their associated health benefits. Last Thursday was a prime example and I'd like to publicly offer my sincere thanks and appreciation.

With about one week's notice, Lake Oswego volunteers pulled together a Three Rivers League JV High School Championship meet on Feb. 7. The fast turnabout was due to a problem with the original pool site in Gresham, and one option put forth was to cancel this year's JV Championship meet.

Undaunted, Lake Oswego Swim Club President Mark Cranch — along with many others, including Bob Heymann, Joe Dahl and Kim Hay — spent countless hours to coordinate a swim meet that hosted 229 swimmers from eight high schools, swimming in 18 different events. It was no small feat!

The meet was run professionally and provided all swimmers a terrific end-of-the-season championship meet experience. Thank you, Lake Oswego!

Karen Andrus-Hughes,

head swim coach

Tualatin High School

Great swim meet

I just wanted to say thank you to everyone who came together to run a successful Three Rivers League JV swim meet this past week.

Due to facility and timing issues at our original location, our league had to scramble to find a suitable location to make a JV meet still happen, with little time to prepare. We were at risk of losing the JV meet altogether, but Bob Heymann, Lake Oswego Swim Club President Mark Cranch and Kim Hay did a wonderful job moving this meet to the Lake Oswego School District pool.

It's important that even our JV swimmers get a chance to have a final swim of the season, and the hard work of the group did not go unnoticed to pull this together. The meet ran without any issues! It was a packed venue, with all eight teams and spectators. All the swimmers had fun, finished with great swims and had a great experience.

Again, thank you Bob, Mark and Kim for running a stellar JV swim meet!

Crystal Ius,

head swim coach

St. Mary's Academy

A (swim) team effort

It's great to have the Oregon City High School Swimming Team back in the Three Rivers League! It was a nice welcome back, and I want to bring readers' attention to what I refer to as a Herculean task that happened last Thursday, with weather and a facility closure at Mount Hood Aquatic Center complicating matters.

My hat's off to the several people who came together at the last minute and planned a flawless JV district meet at the LOSD pool that was arguably the best JV district competition I have been involved with. It was Bob Heymann who took the lead, organizing the meet and polling coaches to make sure we were all on the same page. Lake Oswego Swim Club President Mark Cranch, who ran electronic timing, was also a key player; so was Kim Hay, who operated our HyTek database and results system.

Many others, including Joe Dahl, a longtime official and friend of high school swimming, played roles that were integral to success. Nice job guys!

Bryan Watt, head coach

Oregon City High School Swimming

Let there be light

In Oregon during our winter months, many of our neighborhoods after the holidays are very dark after sunset. I am impressed that Portland now has a winter light festival that it holds in February.

I propose Lake Oswego have a white light festival for the months of January and February. For my friends and me, as we age it is increasingly difficult to see our way around town on dark streets. Lighting up our yards would be cheerful and provide much needed lighting and more safety as we work our way through our dark winter nights.

Of course, this should be on a voluntary basis. But doesn't it sound like fun? Perhaps a health benefit would be more of us would go for a walk after dinner!

Nona Hoffinger

Lake Oswego

Expand Hallinan Woods

I'm writing to express my strong encouragement to the City Council to include and prioritize the acquisition of Hallinan Woods in the funding of the parks bond.

I live in the neighborhood of Hallinan Woods and use the paths on a daily basis for meditation, communion with nature and for meeting neighbors and their dogs. I feel that the acquisition and investment in nature areas like Hallinan Woods and Stevens Meadow are urgent priorities, as once they disappear, they are gone forever.

I have written to you in the past and will continue to express my hope that this precious local natural resource will be preserved.

Kelly Snook

Lake Oswego

A green connection

On behalf of both the board members of the Lake Grove Neighborhood Association and the Friends of Iron Mountain, I write requesting, and just possibly endorsing, the City Council's decision to put a renewal of the parks bond on the May ballot.

Our hope is a modest bond at the same millage rate as the retiring bond would be approved by residents, and that some acquisition monies in this new bond would help procure two top-priority sites recommended by the Parks, Recreation and Natural Resources Board.

We call these lands natural open "space." In actuality, they are "places": relational realms of experienced well-being. May we continue to preserve primordial habitats of diverse ecologies that invite our human presence and are tolerant in exchange for caring stewardship.

Hallinan Woods and the neighboring Yates property is truly a congregation of life, celebrating its existence among us. As a parcel of beauty, it deserves saving as a totality for its inclusion into the neighboring park land.

We board members live across the lake, but revere our connection in green across this lovely home place.

Michael Buck

Lake Oswego

ARTmart's a wrap

The Arts Council of Lake Oswego recently completed its fifth-annual January ARTmart.

Each year it has become more successful because of the wonderful support from the community, including donations of original paintings, prints, sculptures, ceramics and more. People then have the opportunity to support the ACLO by purchasing the art — new to them! We volunteers keep things moving during the month by greeting people coming in to the sale and so much more.

Sincere thanks to everyone involved in ARTmart this year and every year. We appreciate your enthusiasm, your time and your support of the Arts Council.

See you next year!

Bonnie Cartwright

Lake Oswego

Protect Hallinan Woods

As development density intensifies in Lake Oswego, it's critical to our families, and our property values, to protect our remaining patches of natural land. One piece of land in particular is the Yates property adjacent to Hallinan Woods. Purchasing the property would create a larger contiguous area for the community to enjoy and safeguard the open area from development.

I am not a proponent of higher taxes in general, due to the potential misuse, but money spent on protecting the "commons" is money well spent. We have an opportunity to secure these remaining areas for the betterment of all surrounding property owners and the community, not just a single developer. The benefits are numerous outside of increased property values, with improved well-being, access to outdoors and childhood learning and development.

Future generations and our property values will benefit immensely with each additional park and natural area expansion within Lake Oswego. Please support the earmarking of funds for purchasing available pieces of land like Hallinan Woods.

Richard Rich

Lake Oswego

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