Clinic was great

To the editor:

On Jan. 20, my husband had an appointment to receive his first vaccination against the COVID-19 virus. We were both impressed by the organization of the drive through vaccination process.

I drove around the Haywood County Event Center while he filled out the paperwork and removed his coat. Everyone was friendly and professional.

Except for a sore arm he has had no side effects. We thank everyone who has worked so hard and efficiently to make the COVID-19 vaccination process in Haywood County proceed so smoothly.

Ms. B. G. Johnson

Maggie Valley

Just wear a mask

To the editor:

Just a note to say that The Mountaineer is doing a great job of keeping all of us informed about COVID in Haywood County.

It’s still disturbing to see how many of our citizens are anti mask. Also disturbing to see some local businesses not even making an effort to get customers to wear masks.

To those who refuse to wear a mask because it’s against their rights as a citizen, what about the rights of the healthcare personnel who have to take care of them when they end up in the hospital? Or someone they know or family member ends up with COVID. Just wear a mask

Estella Searcy


Lake Junaluska singers program treated poorly

To the editor:

As a multi-year, substantial donor to the Lake Junaluska Singers, I am shocked and appalled at a decision made by Ken Howle, and perhaps others, regarding the termination of music directors, Mary Huff and Kathy McNeil, of the Junaluska Singers and the apparent timid institutional support to continue this successful program.

In a world that is constantly demanding accountability, Mr. Howle and others have a responsibility and obligation to share with donors, as well as the community who have supported this group, the rationale and reasons for such an abrupt dissolution for a program that has brought outstanding recognition to Lake Junaluska itself and to the area.

It is a matter of integrity to disclose if there are any issues that merit such extreme measures.

Without the professional contributions and dedicated service of Mary Huff and Kathy McNeil, this program would not have catapulted to such high praise throughout western North Carolina and the music profession as well as the Methodist community.

To eradicate the blessings and focus that Waynesville and Lake Junaluska have received by having this program is unconscionable without some reasonable explanation, which has not been given. Donors are entitled to an explanation, if there is an expectation of continued giving.

I have offered my opinion as a financial sponsor of a program of which I have championed for many years.

My pride extends further being the grandmother of one of the singers, who had the opportunity to grow professionally and spiritually under the direction of Mary Huff and Kathy McNeil.

Having a long career as a musician and having sung with The Atlanta Symphony Chorus, under the direction of the renowned Robert Shaw, I believe that I am in a position to credibly question the direction that Ken Howle and others have unfortunately chosen.

Jean Worsham Howell


(Editor’s note: The Mountaineer reached out to Lake Junaluska leadership and learned the decision to not have a Lake Junaluska Singers season in 2021 was due to the uncertainty caused by the pandemic. Lake Junaluska remains committed to providing opportunities for young people to explore their God-given talents. Information was shared publicly with the Lake Junaluska community via a community email and online at the Lake Junaluska website.)

Vaccination process was great

To the editor:

On Jan. 21, I received my first COVID-19 vaccine shot administered by the Haywood County Health Department at the Smoky Mountain Event Center. Things couldn’t haven’t gone more smoothly.

I arrived at noon – my assigned time – and the process was completed by 12:30 p.m. This included registration, receiving the vaccine, and a 15-minute waiting time.

Processing was quick, thorough, and efficient. All personnel were courteous, well-informed, and helpful.

The health department and the people working at this site are to be congratulated. After the difficult time we have borne over the past several months, my experience was positive, uplifting, and encouraging.

My hat is off to the health department and, especially, to the men and women staffing the vaccination center.

Despite a cold and rainy day, they were cheerful, efficient, and helpful. I offer my sincere appreciation and thanks. I encourage everyone to be vaccinated so we can return to a normal life as soon as safely possible.

Bruce Carruthers


Postal issues must be addressed

To the editor:

Recently there has been a major issue with the U.S. Postal Service. First it started off we weren’t receiving mail for days and days. Now packages have started not being delivered. What is the issue?

When you call to complain or follow up you can’t get a call through so you have to submit an email and then you don’t get a response on that. I have had two packages that have been “out for delivery” for four days but by the end of the day they are put in “held for pickup” status.

When I went by the postal service to pick up the packages I was told they weren’t there that they would be delivered today. That was two days ago and still no packages.

This is getting extremely frustrating and I’m sure I’m not the only one this has happened to.

This issue needs to be addressed as I know a lot of my family members rely on getting their medications through the mail and packages are just getting “lost” or taking weeks to be delivered after they have arrived at the postal service.

With the COVID, times are hard I realize this, however at least a follow up about the issue would be nice but you don’t even get that much from the postal service.

If there was one thing you used to be able to count on it was the mail arriving, now you never know if that will even happen.

Ashleigh Brown


Great job

To the editor:

Hooray for Haywood County.What a great set-up for our vaccines.

It was a very smooth operation with so many helping.

Eva Kate Thurber

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