Orchids and onions
• ORCHID: To local organization “Citizens Uniting Citizens,” espousing a goal of helping recently incarcerated people become productive members of society. Last year, they spoke to 250 inmates and worked with 150. The provide outfits to ex-convicts and reach out to help them bridge the gap and do better.
• ORCHID: To cadets from the Civil Air Patrol at the Youngstown Air Reserve Station, Cub Scout Troop 101 and many other volunteers who spend many hours ensuring that all local deceased veterans are honored with an American flag on their grave, all in time for the approaching Memorial Day holiday.
• ONION: To Niles police Capt. Robert Miketa for his conviction Wednesday on a charge of reckless operation of a vehicle. Miketa, who was suspended a week from the force, was stopped in September and charged with driving under the influence. He refused to submit to a breath test, leading to the DUI. People, including public employees, make mistakes, and let’s hope this is a singular instance for the officer who hasn’t been disciplined before in his several years on the force.
• ORCHID: To Warren City Schools, Ajax Tocco Magnethermic and the Arconic Foundation for working to improve the district’s career and technical classes to prepare students for a career and college. There is a waiting list of about 100 students to get into the program, which has classes in welding and carpentry.
• ORCHID: To Hubbard Elementary School students for raising $9,349.78 for third-grade student Memphis Vance, who was is awaiting a second liver transplant. Born with biliary atresia — a rare disease of the liver and bile ducts that occurs in infants — Vance is on a list for a second transplant due to complications from his first transplant. In April, the elementary school had “Pennies for Memphis” to help the family offset some of the costs related to his medical care.