Source: Lake Geneva Regional News

We need to be more aware...
July 16, 2011 | 03:55 AM

When this kind of suffering can go on, when a family is suffering and their neighbors don't notice, something is terribly wrong.

Our county is blessed to have a man like Sal Dimiceli and his wonderful volunteers who really do something to help. It's one thing to put a dollar in a contribution container, another thing entirely to go out and investigate reports of people who are clearly suffering. How tragic that a man who has no insurance, cannot receive treatment for cancer.

One doesn't have to go far to see that money is spent frivolously and freely by many, many people. How wonderful it would be if before purchasing some bauble or buying a bigger, fancier car or gambling away hundreds of dollars in a casino, people would ask themselves "Is there a better use for this money?"

This family was clearly in desperate need and yet, had it not been for the son writing to Sal, no one would have known, because no one noticed; not even their closest neighbors. I can well imagine the peace of mind the man experienced as death released him from his pain, knowing Sal was not going to let anything bad happen to his family again. What a relief.

I'm old - not ancient, but old. But I remember a time when people watched out for each other, when neighbors kept an eye on the other children in the neighborhood. When a family was visited by tragedy, everyone came together to help. I think we've lost that along way with all the "toys" out - all the tweeting and texting that keep us from having real conversations with people. Everywhere I go people are on their cell phones - in stores, on the streets, while driving and even when walking along our beautiful Lake Geneva. Instead of enjoying the natural beauty around them many, many people are in their own little world either talking on their phones or texting. They don't "see" any more!

Things are getting worse and more and more people are suffering, struggling with job losses, mounting debt and feelings of overwhelming despair. Those of us who still are fortunate enough to have sufficient and in some cases, abundant, income, need to step up and help those who have much less. Everyone is "waiting" for things to get better instead "making" things better for someone else. A little money can go a long, long way when enough people dip into their pockets.

I put all my change in a piggy bank and at the end of a month or six weeks, take it to the bank where they put it into their coin machine and give me the cash. It amounts to $35 or $40. If everyone did that, if every family got a big piggy bank or even a jar with a slit in the lid, that money could be contributed to Sal and The Time Is Now To Help. Multiply that $40 by thousands of people who live in this county. Wow! It would seem like manna from Heaven to those who need it and best of all, you can absolutely trust Sal Dimiceli to put every single penny of that money to good use. What this one man has accomplished in our community is absolutely miraculous. Teach your children to think of others less fortunate, teach them by example and let them participate in giving of themselves. It's the most important lesson you can impart and it will stay with them for a lifetime.

Pamela deRoy
Lake Geneva