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All posts by cindy

Pearl Harbor Day

A little piece of family history on this Pearl Harbor Day 2021. Today marks the 80th anniversary of the Japanese attack on the US fleet at Pearl Harbor. This is a page from my great grandfather Joseph Winterkorn’s ‘Ledger’ as he called it. This is where he documented his finances and important events in his life. I received a copy of this ledger several years ago from my Uncle Arthur who lived in Hawaii and worked for the Pearl Harbor port authority.

Greatest news that ever came after days of worry about the fate of our dear son Arthur in the far away Hawaiian Islands, where on the morning of Dec 7th 1941 the treacherous forces of Japan swept over Pearl Harbor causing destruction of life and property to the unsuspecting inhabitants, was a telegram received here on the night of Dec 13, 1941 at 11:15 saying:
“Alls well. love Arthur Winterkorn”
Indescribable are the feelings which those few words carried to us all.
He left the home for those far away lands on the 6th of August 1941 with so much hope and ambition to prepare himself for a better future in life.
Fate grant him life and success.
Written Dec 14th 1941.

Joseph Winterkorn, 1941

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Too Much Money

Book Review

Too Much and Never Enough: How My Family Created the World’s Most Dangerous Man
By Mary L. Trump

I already knew Donald Trump was a sociopath and a narcissistic liar, but it was interesting to read his life history. Like all of us, some of Trump’s behavior is genetic. But being born into the Trump family with all of Fred Trump’s money along with the way he was raised created a perfect storm. Really no surprises as far as Donald Trump goes. There is also a lot about Fred Jr. in the book, since it was written by his daughter.

What I found most interesting is the family dynamics and what it’s like to grow up in a very wealthy family. It’s a totally different world; housing paid for, college paid for, health insurance covered, as well as allowances and trust funds. Some of the ‘hardships’ in the family, included having a leaky air conditioner in a rent free apartment or having to sell your yacht or airplane.

It’s a good read and Mary Trump is a good writer with some interesting insights into the Trump family and specifically Donald Trump. I hope she makes a lot of money on this book to make up for some of the millions of dollars stolen from her by her uncles and aunts.

Sadly, I doubt many in Trump’s base will read this book, but I do hope it helps to get Joe Biden elected in November. This country – and arguably the world – is in deep trouble if Trump gets another four years in the White House.

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Boston Children’s Hospital

TBT – 1997, Boston Children’s Hospital. I’ve been going through my old journals and came across this email that I sent to friends and family back in June 1997, over 20 years ago. Aaron was in the hospital having a major surgery, laryngotracheoplasty (tracheal reconstructive surgery to remove his tracheostomy tube). This was sent out via AOL when pretty much everyone who was on-line was on AOL.

Aaron at Boston Children’s Hospital, June 1997


Update #14 – June 19, 1997

Children’s hospital is quite a place. These doctors and nurses see it all. The most serious cases and cases that can’t be handled in the community hospitals come here to Children’s. There are families here from all over the world. We are so lucky to have this hospital so close by. You don’t need to spend much time here to realize how fragile life is and to be thankful if your kids are healthy. Just walking through the lobby you see kids in wheelchairs, kids with deformities, kids so pasty white and sickly; bandages, IV’s, hearing aids, casts and crutches are plentiful.

They had a busy day in the O.R. the day of Aaron’s extubation / bronchoscopy, so his surgery was delayed. We were told they had 18 O.R.s running all day long and did over 80 surgeries in one day! Eighty children having surgery and more than eighty worried family members pacing the floors of this hospital.

In the past week, we have seen lots of kids come and go from our small little corner of this one-of-many intensive care units. Some with chronic illnesses and experienced parents who know the routine and are coping with more of the same. Then there are families who were worried about their kid’s grades in school one day; and the next, worrying about their kid’s life. The teenage girl who was hit by a dump truck. The 11-year-old boy who lost his hand and his vision when a fire cracker exploded in his hand. The 14-year-old boy who barely escaped death from bacterial meningitis. The baby who has multiple fractures and brain damage after a beating from her mother.

Life certainly is a matter of perspective. And this place certainly does make you think about life and death and what is truly important…

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Why I’m Voting NO on Question One

Massachusetts Ballot Question One 2018

Not all Massachusetts nurses want a ‘yes’ vote on Question 1. The Massachusetts Nurses Association (MNA) is promoting ballot Question 1, which would set limits on the number of patients assigned to a nurse at one time. First, this bill only pertains to hospitals and it’s important to note that hospitals staff about half of all nurses and the MNA only represents about 25% of nurses statewide.

The idea of limiting patient load is good in theory, but it’s more complicated. Supporters say that hospital nurses are often over-worked and limiting patient load could make hospitals safer. It is not surprising hospital administrators oppose the ballot question, because it would be expensive. The cost of health care in the US is a much bigger issue and our whole health care system is a mess, but that’s another story.

Regarding Question 1, I’ll be voting no on Question one for a very different reason, simply because there are not enough nurses to fill the jobs we have now. This country has had a nursing shortage dating back to the 1930’s and I don’t see an end to the shortage anytime soon. If this bill passes, hospitals will drain nurses from other much needed and already short staffed places like nursing homes, group homes, rehab facilities, doctor’s offices and home care.

Hospitals already have the most skilled nurses and they should have the flexibility to move staff where it is most needed, without government imposed ratios. Creating nursing assignments is complex and dynamic and needs flexibility. Hospitals will do just fine without this bill. However, if the bill passes, it will be devastating and life threatening to long-term care facilities for the elderly, sick and disabled – our most vulnerable citizens – who often can’t speak for themselves.

I have been a nurse for 36 years and have worked in several different settings including hospitals, nursing homes and home care. It is the nursing homes and home care who are desperate for nurses and this bill would make a bad situation worse. For example, I know of children with complex medical needs who are approved for home nursing hours, but there are simply no nurses to fill those hours. If there were plenty of nurses I would have no objection to Question 1, however at this time when I weigh the pros and cons, I think a yes vote would hurt more people than it would help.

Please Vote No on Question One.

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Celebrating 100 episodes of Rubber Duck Theater

Producer Cindy Bissell during a production of an episode of Rubber Duck Theater.

 

GRAFTON: Grafton Community Television celebrates another cable access milestone during August. GCTV producer Cindy Bissell, along with program hosts husband Richard Bissell and son Aaron Bissell have reached the 100th episode of their cable access show “Rubber Duck Theater.”

“Rubber Duck Theater” debuted on August 1st, 2011. Cindy, Richard and Aaron Bissell are certified access producers for Grafton Community Television. The program featuring the Bissells with recurring guest Nicholas Nicklebee, is primarily billed as a half hour movie review show, but it includes a variety of topics including family travels and themed conventions. The Bissell family reached episode #50 in January, 2014 and episode #75 in November 6, 2015.

The 100th episode features a one hour special that will run on Grafton Community Television during the month of September. The show airs on Grafton Community Television’s Charter Channel 191 / Verizon Channel 34 on the following weekly schedule: Tuesdays at 11:00 PM, Friday at 10:00 PM, Saturday at 10:00 PM and Sunday at 7:00 PM. The program will also be available at the GCTV VOD link: http://graftontv.org/current/VoD.html.

Past episodes of “Rubber Duck Theater” can also be found at https://vimeo.com/rubberducktheater and at http://www.rubberducktheater.com/

Grafton News article PDF
Grafton News (web)
Grafton Patch (web)

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