Living and working in a small mountain town like those that surround the Almanor Basin has taught me that one of the highest callings one can answer is public service.
Those who answer the call to serve others often find themselves in the enviable position of protecting the quality of life in the communities they serve.
Dedicated individuals who recognize the importance of public service and the profound effect it can have on the lives of other people have always understood the importance of community.
Originally hailing from the San Fernando Valley, a vast suburb of Southern California, I moved to Lassen County and unpacked my belongings in the lumber-mill built town of Westwood (hometown of mythical logger HYPERLINK “https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paul_Bunyan_(lumberjack)”Paul Bunyan), and later found employment reporting for the Chester Progressive in Chester.
The people I’ve met here exhibit that close-knit bond that people in small communities enjoy, that’s often missing in the bigger cities where the number of people can be overwhelming and faceless.
My experience now that I’ve settled in has been that small town residents seem more willing to learn each other’s names, while also stepping in to shoulder the burden taking care of neighbors in need — even when they live across town.
We oftentimes fail to recognize or express our gratitude to those public servants and community volunteers whose natural instinct is to help their fellow man.
The epitome of those who answer the call to serve others include our veterans and those who still serve, law enforcement personnel, medical providers and our firefighters.
Throughout history, firefighters and police officers are entrusted with our safety and security, even when they place their own well being in harms way, and willingly undertake the civic obligation to assume this position in society.
From big cities to small towns, and every size in between, they have made extraordinary efforts to protect the public from harm.
The men and women in uniform serving in the armed forces often make the ultimate sacrifice, stepping forward to protect our freedoms.
Public servants understand that integrity is an enduring principle that’s reinforced each and every day. They value personal attributes such as moral character, not based on convenience or expediency, but a lifelong commitment to a standard of conduct.
With a population of nearly 2,200 residents, Chester is one of those small towns filled with mountain charm and big hearts.
I believe the caring members who serve the many townships throughout our region help bind us together into an interconnected community.I am strongly optimistic about the future. The success and health of the people in our region is not the result of one person, or a single group of people, but rather a truly cooperative effort by people from all walks of life.
They fulfill that responsibility every day with professionalism and dedication, ever mindful of the enormous trust placed in them, and reminding the rest of us that a life spent helping others is what a worthwhile life should be all about.