It’s always interesting who you might run into at an airport — especially a military airport.
That was the case for Bill and Helga Curts, of Chapman Lake, on Oct 2.
Bill is a Vietnam and Korea veteran and the couple had stopped at Andrews Air Force Base in Maryland with plans to catch a military plane to Germany when (unknown to them) Vice President Mike Pence was passing through the airport on his way to Arizona.
The Curts had been in the passenger terminal when everyone was asked to move outside as Pence’s entourage passed through (a standard process). At that point, they struck up a conversation with somebody from Pence’s travel detail who apparently picked up on the fact they were from Indiana. Minutes later, he came back and said the vice president wanted to meet them. They were eventually escorted to a spot outside the vice president’s plane.
Bill recalled, “The vice president came out of the aircraft and he says, (much to their surprise) ‘Hello Helga, hello Bill.’ ”
The three talked about family and Indiana connections for 10 or 15 minutes, Bill said.
“I said, ‘I see (State Rep.) Dave Wolkins frequently’ and he said, ‘Oh, yes, Wolkins!”
The interaction was especially pleasing for Helga, who remembers meeting Pence years ago when he stopped at the Kosciusko Courthouse in Warsaw while campaigning for governor.
Helga said she expressed concern to Pence over some of the hateful discourse the administration has had to endure. He shook her hand and said, “Don’t you worry about it. It’s going to be all taken care of and it’s going to be all right,” she recalled.
When the conversation ended, Pence asked a military police officer to escort them back to the terminal. “He was just so friendly and polite,” Helga recalled.
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NICE PAYOUT — That old phrase, “you can’t win if you don’t play,” is not exactly accurate when it comes to the disbursements from Indiana lottery revenues to local communities.
According to paperwork provided by the state and dispersed by the city of Warsaw, the county received more than $13 million in money from lottery revenues in 2018. The breakdown includes $357,757 for the teacher’s retirement fund; $78,322 for police and fire pensions; $2.9 million for the Build Indiana Fund; $8.8 million for lottery winners and $990,532 for payments to retailers.
Since 1989, the Hooser Lottery has contributed more than $5.7 billion “to support good causes in Indiana,” according to the state.
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ELECTION NOTES — A few odds and ends as the municipal election draws near:
- City Council President Diane Quance will never be accused of dragging her feet when it comes to voting. Quance cast an early ballot at the Kosciusko County Justice Building and was informed that she was the first voter of the early voting election season.
- Independent City Council candidate Chris Plack has been appointed to the One Warsaw Board of Directors. The group seeks to promote diversity and had a large turnout for its festival a few weeks ago.
- The Kosciusko County Democratic Party will have a sprinkling of names on most ballots in the Nov. 5 election. In fact, Dems will appear in eight of 10 towns in the heavily Republican county. That includes three candidates running for Warsaw City Council. But more are apparently needed. County Chairman Brian Smith made a final grassroots appeal for volunteers in an email newsletter earlier this week to supporters.
Dan Spalding is editor at InkFreeNews.com.
He covers city government and politics and always welcomes your input.
He can be reached at [email protected] or at (574) 855-7612.