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Below are the two final essays to be posted on Allegiance and Duty Betrayed. The first one is written by a friend -- screen name 'Euro-American Scum' -- who, over the past four years, has been the most faithful essayist here. He has written about everything from his pilgrimage to Normandy in 2004 to take part in the 60th–year commemoration of the invasion, to his memories of his tour in Vietnam. His dedication to America’s founding principles ... and those who have sacrificed to preserve them over the past 200+ years ... is unequaled. Thank you, E-A-S. It has been a privilege to include your writing here, and it is a privilege to call you my friend.

The second essay is my own farewell. And with it I thank all of the many regular visitors, and those who may have only dropped in occasionally, for coming here. I hope you learned something. I hope a seed or two was planted. But, even if not, I thank you for stopping by ... 25 March, 2010


Three Wounded Amish Girls
Are Back in School

Donations Near $4 Million for
Victims of Nickel Mines Shootings

© Bill Coleman, used with permission

According to doctors at Hershey Medical Center, Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, and various other regional hospitals in and around Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, none of the five wounded girls who were victims of the October 2nd shooting at the West Nickel Mines School in Bart Township/Paradise were expected to live. Yet, miraculously, it appears that all of them will … although two of the five will most likely be permanently disabled.

I, personally, have been sent checks and money orders, totaling in excess of $2,200, by friends and acquaintances in six different states, with accompanying notes saying that they don’t know where best to send a donation, and asking that I forward the money in their behalf to the fund that I believe will use it best.

If you multiply that by the probably countless other similar examples, the outpouring of love and concern throughout the world in support of the families involved in this tragedy has been monumental … and indescribably touching.

And the courage, and will to live, demonstrated by the five young girls who did not immediately succumb to their injuries has been nothing short of miraculous.

Not to mention the abundant love and grace of God, that has been apparent every day of the fifty days that have passed since the tragedy … which should be sufficient to encourage careful reflection on 1 Thessalonians 5:18: In everything give thanks! The Amish community does so each and every day, and they portray that joy-filled lesson through personal, faith-inspired example. What better lesson for the rest of us to take to heart as Thanksgiving approaches?

Below are excerpts from an article by Brett Hambright, which appeared in today’s Lancaster Intelligencer Journal:

As worldwide donations for victims of the West Nickel Mines School shootings approach $4 million, three of the girls wounded in the Oct. 2 attack have returned to classes.

Two other girls who survived the shootings suffered severe head wounds and are likely to have long-term disabilities. One is home while the other remains hospitalized, a spokesman for the Nickel Mines Accountability Committee said Monday ...

... Five classmates of the wounded girls were killed after Charles Carl Roberts IV stormed their one-room schoolhouse in Bart Township. Roberts shot all 10 of the girls before killing himself.

The schoolhouse was razed 10 days later, and classes were moved to a building on a nearby farm.

One girl who sustained shoulder, hand and leg injuries is attending school full time ... Two others with lung, abdominal, facial and leg injuries also are back full time, aside from time away for daily physical therapy treatment ...

One girl remains at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia and ‘is recovering more than expected. She has some ability to communicate’ ...

... Another girl is home but semi-comatose. Those who have visited her [say] she ‘miraculously survived.’

Several funds were established for the victims’ families, which may eventually face massive medical bills. The money also will be used for counseling services, transportation costs and construction costs for a new school, which is expected to be built in the upcoming months.

For the time being, hospitals have waived the majority of medical costs. The families are waiting for these institutions to say they need to start paying ... but some institutions have indicated they can continue covering expenses.

$3.2 million has been raised by fundraising programs.

That figure does not include Capital Blue Cross’ pledge of $500,000 for medical expenses. It also does not account for other smaller funds, [according to the] Mennonite Central Committee.

MCC and three other agencies with local offices — Anabaptist Foundation, Mennonite Disaster Services and Coatesville Savings Bank — have collected most of the funds being overseen by the Nickel Mines Accountability Committee.

The public continues to donate ... it is a daily occurrence, with donations cresting immediately after the funds were established, but there remains a fairly steady stream of contributions.


lori_gmeiner said...

I'm SO GLAD to hear this, Joanie! But my heart goes out to the girls who will be permanently disabled. God bless them.

Anonymous said...

Thank you.

alexib said...

I'm very happy to know that three of the girls are back in school and they seem to be doing well. But it makes me cry to hear about the condition of the other two. It's hard not to hate that evil man who did this to little girls! It sounds like the rest of their lives, and their family's lives, are going to be a struggle.

Anonymous said...

Talk about "good news/bad news"--but thanks for both. Alot of us out here have been wondering.

Danthemangottschall said...

".....although two of the five will most likely be permanently disabled"

I don't have the forgiveness the Amish do. I hope the bastard is burning.

Anonymous said...

wonderful news for the 3. We can only pray and hope for the 2.

sandra said...


What happened on your Friday visit to the coroner to find out about the toxicology test?

3timesalady said...

I forgot anout that meeting with the coroner. Were you able to get anything from him, Joanie?---although I guess if you did you would have mentioned it here.

guinevere said...

I know one of the families, I forget which one, took their little daughter home from the hospital right afterwards because they wanted her to die at home. Then they were convinced to bring her back. I hope she isn't the one who is still in the hospital. It sounds like she will be severly disabled and I am afraid the Amish will wonder whether it was God's will to take her and they interfered. They don't need that kind of guilt on top of everything else. I pray for them every night.

C.R. said...

As I understand it, in the Chinese language, the ideograph representing people is called 'Ren', and is made up of two leaning stokes mutually supporting each other. If either stroke were removed, the other would collapse.

Although I am far away, I know this timely update on the children who were injured at the Nickel Mines schoolhouse, will renew my vigor to stand with the remarkable individuals who have shown a steadfast commitment to be obedient to God, even in the face of this horrific tribulation. I will continue to uphold these precious children, their families, and their community in fervent prayer, confident that God, who intimately knows each individual, will supply what each one needs out of the abundance of His mercy and grace.

As portions of Mr. Hambright's article are picked up and disseminated by the Associated Press, our self-absorbed, dying world, will have another brief glimpse into this Amish community. Their profound commitment to offer their lives to God, as a reasonable service of worship, stands in sharp contrast to communities and households that have suffered horrifying losses without the benefit of personal faith in the abundant love and grace of God.

This community has powerfully spoken to our culture, a society desperately in need of the good news of God's transforming love, forgiveness, and redemption. This community can extend the hand of forgiveness to the man who maimed their children, and took others from their midst, because this community understands what it is to be forgiven by a righteous, holy, God.

May our gracious God, the source of all wisdom and comfort, continue to grant these families the strength to extol His goodness and grace, even amid their own profound grief and hardship.

joanie said...

I drove down to the coroner’s office several weeks ago (maybe two weeks after the Nickel Mines shootings, and after having been told in two separate phone calls that the coroner was out of town, and would be back on the day I drove to Lancaster).

Long story short … when I showed up there in person I was once again told that he was out of town. I spoke, instead to an ‘assistant’ who told me that drug and toxicology tests had been performed during the Roberts autopsy and the body was clean. No evidence of drugs (either illegal or prescription) or toxins of any kind.

When I asked to see something in writing I was told that I would have to speak with the coroner himself. I did not pursue that any further.

I also went to the office of the district attorney in an effort to see whether he could provide me with what I wanted. That office was much friendlier, but I was informed that because Roberts is dead, and no charges have been filed against him, the D.A. cannot release that kind of information. It must come directly from the coroner’s office.

I decided to drop the matter. I do not have the time to pursue it further, since I was spending much of my time on the Santorum campaign. I was told that the coroner’s office did look for drugs and that none were present. As far as I know, that issue was never discussed in the media (press or broad/telecast). I still find that combination of circumstances strange, at best.

joanie said...

This community has powerfully spoken to our culture, a society desperately in need of the good news of God's transforming love, forgiveness, and redemption. This community can extend the hand of forgiveness to the man who maimed their children, and took others from their midst, because this community understands what it is to be forgiven by a righteous, holy, God.

Thank you, c.r., for the gentle but powerful reminder.

sandra said...


As I told you earlier, you would have to put pressure in some form on the so-called "coroner."

[Something that HE perceived as pressure.]

Without that, he obviously was going to give nothing.

Merely showing up there wasn't enough.

This stinks to high heavens and NO-ONE is the media, with all the zillions of words written about this incident, will do anything.

What a farce our modern "America" is.

Anonymous said...

Well said, cw-patriot.