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Letters to The Platteville Journal for Nov. 4
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PMS time capsules 

During the years of 1976 through 2000, sixth-graders and some fifth-graders at Platteville Middle School wrote letters to themselves and then placed them into a time capsule. The time capsules were to be opened at their five-year class reunions.

As would be expected, not everyone attended those reunions. Also, a number of those students moved before graduation. Some may not have graduated. As a result, there are many unclaimed letters.

Four classes — 1996, 2003, 2004 and 2005 — either did not have five-year reunions or did not claim their time capsule for their reunion. For those classes and for the classes of 1998, 2000 and 2001: I have all of the unclaimed letters. I also have many letters from other classes dating back to 1982. Unfortunately, some class presidents did not return the unclaimed letters to me following their reunions. I cannot be certain which classes those are, but I fear that those letters may no longer exist.

The intent of this notification is to get as many unclaimed letters into the hands of those who wrote them. The students (with complete confidentiality) were encouraged to write about what was going on in their lives at the time, how they felt about things, personal thoughts, etc. For the first year of the time capsule activity, each student wrote one letter. As the years went by, some students were placing as many as 20 letters to themselves in the capsule. Mr. Kent Scheuerell also had his students participate, so all students had at least one letter placed into the capsule. Needless to say, I have in my possession some very valuable memories that belong to others.

I have determined that the most efficient way to get these mini-treasures into the proper hands is to encourage grandparents, parents, siblings and friends of those who attended the middle school between 1976 and 2000 to make contact with that relative or friend. They will remember if they claimed their capsule envelopes or not. If not, they can contact me via email at Some good laughs await.

Thomas Skubal


This is Hospice Month 

“Many people mistakenly think that choosing hospice care for themselves or a seriously-ill loved one means giving up. However, more than 1 million people across the nation have learned just the opposite. They have been touched by the hospice national campaign, ‘Moments of Life: Made Possible by Hospice.’” 

November is National Hospice and Palliative Care Month. This month is dedicated to, in the words of NHPCO president J. Donald Schumacher, help “debunk this myth, and show that hospice focuses on compassionate, person-centered care, which enables special moments and memories at the end of life for patients and loved ones.

“When patients are admitted into hospice care at an appropriate time, their quality of life can actually improve. Hospice is a team-oriented approach to providing specialized care for people facing a life-limiting illness and includes expert medical care, pain management, and emotional and spiritual support for patients and families. More simply, hospice care supports living one’s life to the fullest and with dignity; regardless of how much time remains.” 

Hospice is covered by Medicare, Medicaid and by most insurance plans and HMOs. Hospice is provided in the home, long term care facilities, as well as assisted living facilities and group homes—allowing people to be with their families and loved ones in comfortable surroundings at the end of life. It is available to people of all ages, with any life limiting illness. 

I want to make sure that people know that help is available and that each November we celebrate National Hospice and Palliative Care month. I encourage you to learn more about this special kind of care that provides comfort, love and respect at the end of life by calling us at 723-6416 or visit our website at

Mareeta Kolman
Social Worker, Grant County Hospice


On Veterans Day

On Veteran’s Day Americans recognize the sacrifice Veterans made, but do we understand the commitment Veterans made?  Every enlisted person in the United States military makes the following oath:

“I, (name), do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; and that I will obey the orders of the President of the United States and the orders of the officers appointed over me, according to regulations and the Uniform Code of Military Justice. So help me God.” 

The oath officers make has the same commitment to defend the Constitution, but the third phrase, to obey presidential orders, is replaced with a commitment to faithfully discharge the duties of the office being entered. The National Guard oath adds a commitment to also defend the state constitution and obey the governor’s orders.

To understand the oath, first consider what is not stated. Unlike some nations, our military makes no pledge of allegiance to our leaders; their allegiance is to the Constitution. Military officers receive their commission from Congress and make no commitment to obey presidential orders. This structure protects Americans from presidential tyranny.

Nowhere in the oath do military members commit to defend United States citizens or property. Doing so would contradict their commitment to defend the Constitution against domestic enemies. This may seem wrong, but it is logical when you consider the purpose of the Constitution.

The Constitution is the authority people grant to the government in order to govern. It defines the type of government we have and it protects our liberties by restraining the government. The President cannot change a single word of the Constitution. Congress can propose amendments, but only the states (the people) ratify (approve) changes. By defending and bearing true faith and allegiance to the Constitution, our military adheres to the will of the people and protects Americans from oppressive governments like communism, fascism, socialism, or the sharia law of Islamic nations.

The last two things to recognize is that the oath is sworn to God; therefore, it is to be honored above all other commitments. Military members freely give up their Constitutional rights and are governed by the Uniform Code of Military Justice and subject to non-judicial punishment.

Is our Constitution worth risking life? Our nation’s Founding Fathers certainly thought so. Today refugees around the world flee oppressive governments and would readily risk their lives to live in America. I personally helped more than 29,000 Cuban refugees do just that. I’m a retired naval officer and like many veterans, my experiences helped me cherish our constitution and realize it was worth risking life for. I find Americans who discredit the Constitution or willingly accept socialism disgraceful.   

This Veterans Day, show veterans you appreciate the commitment they made. Instead of generically saying “thank you for your service,” thank them for defending our Constitution.

Bill Laurent


The Platteville Journal will print most letters to the editor, regardless of the opinion presented. The Journal reserves the right to edit material that is libelous or otherwise offensive to community standards and to shorten letters The Journal determines are excessively long. All letters must be signed and the signature must appear on the printed letter, along with a contact number or email for verification. Some submitted letters may not be published due to space constraints. “Thank you” letters will not be printed. All letters and columns represent the views of the writers and not necessarily the views of The Platteville Journal.