Panel Should Study
OC Police Department
I have lived in Ocean City for 30-plus years and have seen three police chiefs run our department. Current Chief Bernadette DiPino’s tenure has seen a lot of controversies come and go.
The OCPD has been sued by its officers many times. There was a vote by the FOP of no confidence in DiPino’s leadership. There are too many whispers and rumors of misconduct by command staff. FOP leaders seem to lave sooner than they should. One of the ex-FOP leaders seems doomed to be a sergeant till retirement.
The chief’s ex-boyfriend was the lieutenant of the canine unit that allegedly sparked this Earl Campbell incident. Well, I’m glad Jim Hall did the right thing in getting the council to instruct DiPino to offer Campbell the expense for the dog’s medical bill.
The dog got the Hollywood ending, but what about the officer who sacked his career. This ex-officer was barred by OCPD rules from going public.
The OCPD is a para-military organizations that has a strict chain of command. If the officer filed a grievance, would he last as long as our ex-FOP presidents do?
The Salisbury blog that festers political controversy commented that the Earl Campbell incident set a record in responses from the public. I think the public should sign comments, not make them anonymously. The alleged police commenters had no choice but to hide their names.
I have heard DiPino’s travels too much to attend seminars, trade events, etc. Instead of padding her resume this late in her career, I believe she might want to be more hands on. I have heard on more than one occasion that favoritism and grudges rule the way promotions are given.
Let’s fix this problem, ask our council to create a panel to look at the Earl Campbell incident and OCPD’s command staff for any problems. Grant our officers immunity to speak to the panel candidly outside of the chain of command. If DiPino or anyone else needs to be fired, now is the time, it’s winter. We don’t need all of these lawsuits from our police officers.
Animal Abuse Concerns
There is a weather vacated house just off Route 50 on Gray’s Corner Road in West Ocean City that bears witness to a minor tragedy. The house stands empty except for two mostly-abandoned dogs.
One dog (a pit bull) is chained to a crumbling front porch. The other (a chow) is roped to a post in the backyard. For 24 hours each day, they have existed in this way for years. They could get sick and die where they lay. Who would know? Who would care?
Except for the rare acknowledgement of a few well-meaning neighbors, these dogs have no interaction with a living being. They are not played with; they are not walked; and they are never brought indoors regardless of the weather. They absolutely have no joys in their lives. They simply survive. Their reason for living a mystery even onto themselves.
The absentee owner of these two sad creatures does just the bare minimum to skirt Maryland’s toothless animal abuse and neglect laws. They are fed and watered sporadically whenever it suits him to stop by. When confronted, his response is “mind your own business.”
Animals can’t vote and politicians don’t care. So hollow animal abuse and neglect laws continue and nothing gets done except for meaningless lip service.
Perhaps animals don’t feel pain, experience emotion or need care and attention. Maybe they deserve what they get on this earth. Yeah, right.
Trot Helps Charities
On Thanksgiving Day, more than 380 locals and visitors, many in festive costumes, and 60 pets attended the 4th Annual Turkey Trot in Fenwick Island. The Turkey Trot is a two-mile fun run/walk that starts on Lewes Street, goes south to the Maryland line and back. I am delighted to report that the event was terrific success, not to mention a lot of fun. There is no charge to participate, but each year, I select two charities to support and encourage participants to make donations. This year, the event supported two wonderful local organizations: The “New” Friends of the Fenwick Island Lighthouse and Safe Haven Animal Rescue, and it was the most successful Trot ever. In all, we raised over $2000. Over $1,700 will go to help create a museum in the original lightkeeper’s house in Fenwick Island. Over $300, 3 SUV loads of food and other pet necessities for the pets at the shelter. We also received donations in cash and pet needs from many people who wanted to join the esprit de corps, but could not attend. My sincere thanks to our generous sponsors: Just Hooked and Off the Hook was our gold sponsor and contributed $300; The following Silver Sponsors contributed $200 each: Aerofit Mobile, The Bookend Cafe and Indulgence, Nantuckets, Pottery Place, Ruth’s Chris Steak House, and Surf’s Edge Deli and Pizzeria. Other sponsors included: Aerofit Mobile, Delmarva Board Sport Adventures, The Dispatch, hipAHA, House Pawz Pet Sitting and McCabe’s Gourmet Market. A Pre-Trot party was sponsored by The Bookend Café in the Village of Fenwick, Post-Trot Party and Safe Haven donation site was sponsored by Perks Café at the Pottery Place in Sunshine Plaza.
I am already planning the 5th Annual Turkey Trot for Thanksgiving Day, Nov. 22, 2012. With the continued support from the Town of Fenwick Island, local businesses, dedicated volunteers, and people who want to trot for charity, we will be able to help more worthy organizations next year.
(The writer is the president of HipAHA.)
Best Reunion Ever
The Stephen Decatur High School Class of 1971 extends our overwhelming gratitude and sincere appreciation for the generous donations from our prize sponsors for our classmate giveaways and drawings. Their generosity enabled our 40th Class Reunion to be the best reunion ever.
Our sincere thanks go out to Accu Puncture Wellness, Assateague Greens Golf, Atlantic Hotel Berlin, Atlantic Hotel Ocean City, B&F Bikes, Bank of Ocean City, Bay club Golf, Bayside Seafood & Produce, Bear Trap Dunes Golf, Berlin Seafood, Birch’s Plumbing, Comfort Inn, David Bounds, Domino’s Pizza, Dough Roller, Doyle’s Restaurant, Eagle’s Landing Golf, EZ Food Willards, Fager’s Island, Flag Shop Snow Hill, Flamingo Hotel, Frontier Town Water Park, Frontier Town Western Park, Garden Market, Greene Turtle, HR Block, Healing Hands Chiropractic, Henry Fine Arts, Holiday Inn Express, Holiday Inn Oceanfront, Jiffy Lube, Jolly Roger, La Tolteca Mexican Restaurant, OC Injury Center, Reacreation and Parks, Ocean Resort, Old Pro Golf, Olive Tree 127th Street, Outback Ocean City, Phillips Crab House, Pizza Tugos, Rayne’s Reef Restaurant, Red Door Sub Shop, Smokers BBQ, The Palette, Tony’s Pizza, Wainwrights Tire Center and Waterman’s Seafood.
A big thank you to Brenda Golden of the Coconut Times for coverage in the paper of our reunion and Terry Sterner for candid photos and our class picture.
A very special thank you to Senator Jim Mathias for his participation in our celebration and the wonderful reminder, for men and women, to have regular breast cancer check-ups. It’s a family affair.
A Big Class of ’71 Thank You to Leighton Moore (a class member), Rico, and the staff of Seacrets for all of their talent & time in helping to make our 40th class reunion our best reunion ever.
SDHS Class of 1971 Reunion Committee members Debi Thompson Bishop, Albin “Hondo” Handy, Shirley Fitzgerald Warren and Terri Birch Swinscoe
A Vet’s Christmas Wish
All over the world the shooting and the wars stop for one second, then a minute, then five minutes, then maybe an hour, then a day, then a month, then six months, then a year, then five years, then 10 years and then a century.
Peace no more. War’s a veterans prayer.
Richard C. Miller