PRAISE for the life and immense contributions of Dr. Donald C. “Doc” Master, the Canadian-born veterinarian who spent most of his career in Charles Town. Long before the computer age gave us the master doc, “Doc” Master offered a blueprint for making a difference in a community.

In addition to his commitment to providing excellent care day or night to farmers and other animal owners, Master also toiled as a public servant – including spending more than two decades as Charles Town’s mayor, where his many platforms included fighting to better the city’s infrastructure, curbing drug abuse and encouraging young people to stay in school.

NAY to low voter turnout. The polls were not crowded for last week’s municipal election in Ranson. t’s true there were no hotly contested races and Mayor Dave Hamill’s extended leadership has prompted many Ransonites to feel somewhat complacent about the city’s governance.

Nonetheless, taking time to cast a ballot every Election Day ought to be citizens’ natural impulse. We hope that next time around, more residents make it a priority to register to vote and then speak their mind in the voting booth.


PRAISE for Saturday’s Jefferson County Farm Tour. Agriculture may no longer be the central occupation in the once mostly rural Eastern Panhandle, but our farms remain vibrant, important components of our lives.

Each June, Jane Tabb of the West Virginia University Extension Service offers up a daylong reminder of the essential role farms still play here. Throughout the day, visitors can enjoy free tours of four local farms to learn about the hard work, sacrifice and satisfaction that life on the farm involves. We urge our readers to read Jessica Wiant’s preview and take advantage of this opportunity to go behind the scenes at the Appalachian Fruit Research Station, Dubble ‘R’ Farm, Mount View Polo and O’Sullivan Farm.


PRAISE for local libraries’ summer reading programs. When school lets out for the summer, many kids don’t want to pick up a book until classes resume in August. We’re fortunate in our community to have creative librarians who battle such inclinations.

By offering special programs that make summer reading fun, many young people will seek out books in the weeks to come rather than hide from such “work.”

To sign up your child or to learn more about special summer reading events, call the Charles Town Library (304-725-2208), Shepherdstown Public Library (304-876-2783), South Jefferson Library at Summit Point (304-725-6227) and Bolivar-Harpers Ferry Public Library (304-535-2301).


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